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The St Dupont Olympio Or Orpheo And Similar Fountain Pens.


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#1 jar

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 14:13

ArchiMark produced a great thread on the ST Dupont Montparnasse line and so I am starting a similar examination of the Olympio/Orpheo/Fidelio (now called the small size) pens.

ST Dupont has a long history of producing luxury goods. They began with luggage, combining craftsmanship and the absolutely best materials to produce luggage that looked great but also would stand up to the hardest use. Later they got into lighters producing what have always been the very best ones available anywhere.

In the early 70s ST Dupont decided to get into fountain pens.

As usual, they carried over their experience in precision manufacture, precious metal and Chinese Lacquer techniques into the pens they built.

In this post we will deal with one model, the Olympio.

The history of the model gets a little complicated as they used different names for the series in different markets and also in their descriptions of the sizes.

In some areas the line was called Orpheo while in the US market it was called Olympio, so you will often find the terms used interchangeably. Initially there were two sizes, and they were described as Large and Extra Large. Later a third smaller pen was added that was called Fidelio.

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The sizes of the pens capped as shown are:

5 1/4"
5 1/2"
5 3/4"

The pen we will look at here is the Large size (medium) Olympio, in particular one in the lined gold finish.

 

Like all of the ST Dupont pens it is a cartridge filled pen or can use regular ink with an included converter. The Olympio series uses a standard sized international cartridge or converter so there is a broad selection of inks available.

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The machining is absolutely amazing. Each engraved line is slightly undercut and the undercut part faceted. This produces a wonderful effect. The lines directly in line of sight show only the flat top, as the angle changes you see the faceted effect and as you see beyond the depth of the engraving the lines appear smooth again. The look changes constantly; playing with light, shadow and viewing angle.

The Large and Extra Large Olympios both use the 18K nib while the slightly smaller Fidelio uses a 14K nib. The nib on this pen is an Extra Fine 18K gold wrap around nib that is super smooth and puts down a moderately wet line.

As mentioned above, the highlight of any ST Dupont product is their attention to detail and that is true here as well. The clip is spring loaded so it slides on smoothly and holds securely on thin fabrics or thick. The cap slides on or off nearly effortlessly but when you are putting it on, the last few millimeters allow it to center and then there is a reassuring "Click" as it seats in place.

Another feature I love about the ST Duponts is that when the cap is posted, the pen is only slightly longer than when capped. The cap remains in place securely, the balance is great and once again everything simply feels just as it should.

This is quite different from other large sized pens that are often considerably longer when the cap is posted than when the pen is capped.

Here is the Olympio and a Montblanc 146 posted as an example.

 

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There are quite a few pens out there in the same relative size as the ST Dupont Olympio ...

 

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From left to right: Conway Stewart 100, Montblanc LeGrand 146, OMAS Ogiva (D-Day), OMAS old style Paragon, Olympio Large, Pelikan 800, Sheaffer Legacy, Levenger Sheaffer Connoisseur, Waterman Expert.

... but there are few that provide the complete package, that address aesthetics, performance, feel and sound.

ST Dupont. Luxury defined as the attention to detail in even the most mundane of things.

 

As I mentioned above, the Olympio/Orpheo/Fidelio family consists of three similar pens in different sizes.

 

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We looked at the Large (Medium) sized, so now let's turn our attention to the smaller Fidelio.

The Fidelio is still a fairly large pen, 5 1/4" long closed and about 5 1/2" posted. It is similar in size to many other popular pens...

 

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From left to right: Parker Sonnet, Waterman Phineas, Pelikan 600, ST Dupont Fidelio, Older style Pilot/Namaki VP, Sheaffer Prelude and OMAS old style Milord.

 

...but has all the characteristics of a ST Dupont product.

Fit and finish are perfect and the sound when capping is classic Dupont. The nibs are 14K, a rhodium plated medium one on the silver pen and a single tone gold fine hard one on the black Lacquer version.

 

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I find that my Fidelios get more pocket time than either the large or extra-large versions simply because they fit my hand perfectly. They put down a moderately wet line, with no signs of skip or hesitation and the fine nib in particular always amazes me.

 

Now let's examine the last of the Olympios, Goldilocks BIG bed.

 

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It is 5 3/4" long capped.

This really is a big pen, right in there with some of the larger made.

 

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From left to right: Pelikan 1050, Montblanc 149, the Olympio, OMAS new style Milord and 360.

 

Just as with all the others, the attention to fit, finish and detail is pure perfection. The hand done Chinese Lacquer work is amazing.

 

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The pen posted is only about 1/4" longer than when capped and the balance is perfect.

 

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#2 ArchiMark

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Posted 09 June 2016 - 14:53

Excellent overview of these great pens, jar....thanks for posting this!

As soon as I can take some pics, I will add about 4 handsome Olympio/Orpheo model pens here....

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#3 jar

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 01:48

Here are a few models to get things started.

 

A Palladium and Black Laque de Chine XL:

 

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A Shaman LE:  this version did not use Laque de Chine since it was impossible to get a clear enough natural lacquer to allow the pearlescent white lacquer to shine through.  The insets are Mother Of Pearl.

 

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the Version one of Vertigo:  while not a number edition it was only offered one year.

 

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and the Shaman, Vertigo, Vertigo 2 (numbered edition), a Placed Laque and the Barleycorn. (listed right to left):

 

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One of the three FuenteFuente commemorates, the Opus X:  this is a return to Laque de Chine.

 

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Another limited Edition, the Medici: 

 

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#4 ArchiMark

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 03:34

Some very handsome pens and great info, jar......

 

Will add some of my Olympio/Orpheo pens that have different finishes than yours sometime soon...

 

Thanks.


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#5 Z-Tab

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 08:29

I have a pair of Olympio XLs that I recently picked up (a Palladium Trim and a Vertigo 1). They are terrific pens for quick notes with exceptionally solid build quality, so you don't feel like frequent capping and uncapping will do any damage. Plus, while heavy, they are so well balanced that they are good for longer writing sessions as well.



#6 RMN

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Posted 10 June 2016 - 20:16

Wow, that classifies under pen porn, Jar!

 

I will pin this one, too for now.

 

 

D.ick


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#7 jchch1950

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Posted 12 June 2016 - 15:48

thanks for new post. I hope that ST Dupont will get the recognition they deserve.

#8 phentrek

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Posted 12 June 2016 - 15:55

Thanks Jar. This was very informative. I have my first Olympio waiting for me at the p.o. box.
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#9 jar

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Posted 12 June 2016 - 18:32

Thanks Jar. This was very informative. I have my first Olympio waiting for me at the p.o. box.

Fantastic but without pics it never happened.  (in fact these days even with pics it may not have ever happened)


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#10 phentrek

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Posted 12 June 2016 - 20:33

Fantastic but without pics it never happened.  (in fact these days even with pics it may not have ever happened)

 

Fair enough... 2 from cell phone camera

IMG_1792.JPG

IMG_1793.JPG

 

It's an extra large Olympia with M nib...

 

Jar, does the section of the extra large also fit the large?

 

thanks


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#11 jar

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Posted 12 June 2016 - 21:43

 

Fair enough... 2 from cell phone camera

attachicon.gifIMG_1792.JPG

attachicon.gifIMG_1793.JPG

 

It's an extra large Olympia with M nib...

 

Jar, does the section of the extra large also fit the large?

 

thanks

No, they are two entirely different diameters.  Beautiful pen though.


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#12 ArchiMark

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Posted 13 June 2016 - 01:06

Wow, that classifies under pen porn, Jar!

 

I will pin this one, too for now.

 

 

D.ick

 

Thanks for pinning this one, D.ick......and you're right about pen porn.....so, maybe the thread title needs a warning about being 18 or older to view this thread.... ;)

 

thanks for new post. I hope that ST Dupont will get the recognition they deserve.

 

Well said, it's been a mystery to me why ST Dupont isn't more often mentioned around here.....they are truly top-notch quality pens and handsome too....


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Current Pens: Cross, Delta, Montegrappa, Parker, Wahl-Eversharp


#13 phentrek

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Posted 13 June 2016 - 02:02

No, they are two entirely different diameters.  Beautiful pen though.


Thank you. One of the things I like best is what you pointed out about how deeply the cap posts. While this pen is long and heavy the balance when posted is fantastic.

Edited by phentrek, 13 June 2016 - 02:05.

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#14 ArchiMark

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Posted 15 June 2016 - 20:00

Here's the first post of several showing each of the Olympio or Orpheo pens I have.......

 

First up is the colorful Orpheo Grande (at least that's what I think it's called...) Placed Red Lacquer pen.

 

Second shown is the handsome Orpheo Grande Placed Blue Lacquer pen.

 

Length Capped:  5.75" (14.7 cm)

 

Diameter Barrel: 0.5625" (14.5 mm) at widest location

 

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#15 ArchiMark

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 01:09

Next up, a classic looking Olympio XL (largest size...) in black lacquer and palladium trim.

 

Length Capped:  5.8" (15.2 cm)

 

Diameter Barrel: 0.5625" (14.5 mm) at widest location

 

Please note difference in cap design/details from the prior Orpheo post.

 

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#16 ArchiMark

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 01:17

Here's another Olympio XL size in black lacquer and palladium cap and trip. Note the lined area on part of cap and black inset square on pocket clip.

 

Cap pulls off like almost all ST Duponts  and snaps back on with the classic distinct sound that registers quality.

 

Length Capped:  5.75" (14.7 cm)

Diameter Barrel: 0.5"+ (12.7 mm) at widest location

 

* Dimensions are approximate.

 

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P1080490_zpssgivqf9l.jpg

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#17 jar

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 12:41

I find my Black Olympio XL with the Palladium cap one of the more formal of my St Duponts.  The plain black lacquer ones regardless of which model come in a close second.


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#18 RMN

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 20:48

That Blue Laquet Orpheo is a beaut, Mark.

 

 

Question.:

I see Olympio XL with metal and with resin sections. Can you address that matter?

 

I personally am not a fan of metal sections.

I have an Ellipsis with resin section, luckily

But my Elysee has a metal section, alas.

 

 

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#19 jar

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 21:28

That Blue Laquet Orpheo is a beaut, Mark.

 

 

Question.:

I see Olympio XL with metal and with resin sections. Can you address that matter?

 

I personally am not a fan of metal sections.

I have an Ellipsis with resin section, luckily

But my Elysee has a metal section, alas.

 

 

D.ick

That's simply an indication of the age of the pen, earlier Olympio/Orpheo models had resin sections and later they changed to metal sections. IIRC the change was in 1997 or 1998.


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#20 The Blue Knight

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 21:45

Take these are heavy pens how much do Olympio and Orpheo weigh?








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