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Can Someone Identify This Esterbrook?


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16 replies to this topic

#1 TitoThePencilPimp

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 03:24

Was gifted this pen by someone who has no need for it. Wow, the nib is really amazing. Better than my Sailor 14k nib Sapporo. Can anyone identify the name and date of pen?741DC7E4-059F-4147-9AC6-A3390968023C.jpeg

Edited by TitoThePencilPimp, 22 January 2020 - 03:25.


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#2 FarmBoy

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 07:34

Jeff. Most certainly the pen went by Jeff.

If the cap and barrel jewels are the same diameter which the look to be the pen is a model J

Despite rumors otherwise, Esterbrook called the color Green. Likely late 40s early 50s.
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#3 TitoThePencilPimp

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 09:58

Thank you! I did some reading and this appears to have been a budget pen? Really lovely nib, better than a lot of my gold nibs.

#4 Estycollector

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 11:48

This is the source I use.
http://www.esterbrook.net/

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#5 JakobS

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 17:48

The spoon style lever probably places it later in Model J manufacture then earlier......

 

What number nib do you have? 


Edited by JakobS, 22 January 2020 - 17:49.

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#6 inkstainedruth

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 22:37

Esterbrook was a "second tier" brand (the top tier being Parker, Waterman and Sheaffer).  Some people say it's a third tier brand but I disagree.  Their R&D went into the huge range of available nib units, which were interchangeable between pens (even the post J-series era, I believe), and were in different levels from the student grade 1xxx series nibs, which just have folded over tines (no tipping) to the top level 9xxx series nibs.  And the celluloid they used for the barrel seems to be reasonably good quality as well -- at least that's been my experience with the number I've gotten on eBay or found in the wild.

If you can tell us the length of the pen (as well as, of course, what the nib is -- because enquiring minds want to KNOW  :D) and possibly also the girth, people can tell you if it's a full-size J, a thinner LJ, or a shorter SJ.

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#7 Freddy

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 23:14

Thank you! I did some reading and this appears to have been a budget pen? Really lovely nib, better than a lot of my gold nibs.

Well..TTPP enjoy usin' your new green Esterbrook Juliet.....Care to let us know which nib and ink combo usin'..?

 

      Fred



#8 Estycollector

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Posted 23 January 2020 - 00:11

I've collected and restored a few of the Esterbrooks FP's between 1932 and mid '50's. What has been impressive in the hard black plastic and quality plastic from which the pens are constructed. 

 

Also, the simple and effective lever fill mechanism that can easily be repaired. The metal parts take a shine easily and the jbars endure decades of old ink and a busted diaphragm surprising well. 

 

Yes, the nib selection provides the opportunity to change the personality with a twist. 

 

I tend to think of Esterbrook as the pen for people who write. :)


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#9 corgicoupe

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Posted 23 January 2020 - 02:30

And the hardware is stainless steel rather than plated brass.  They are user pens for sure.  I think I have about ten of them, and another ten nibs.


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#10 antoniosz

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Posted 23 January 2020 - 16:32

I think much of the success of our beloved Esties is in the excellent development of stainless for their nibs.
I cannot think of any other pen of that era 1940-1950 with stainless steels that have endured so well in time. 
Ditto for their amazing rubber sacs also :) 



#11 TitoThePencilPimp

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Posted 24 January 2020 - 05:42

Dont have any calipers or ruler on hand to measure the pen. However, here is a side by side comparison with two different size pelikans.

The number on the nib is 2556. I inked it with Sailor Gentle Ink (green with yellow undertones?/ I forget the name). But there was a bit of Pelikan Red Ink in the pen I forgot about. The ink color appears to be black with occasional green tint mixed in.0B62742E-AD43-498C-AA31-71D70C1F1A9C.jpeg

#12 Estycollector

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Posted 24 January 2020 - 10:57

Dont have any calipers or ruler on hand to measure the pen. However, here is a side by side comparison with two different size pelikans.

The number on the nib is 2556. I inked it with Sailor Gentle Ink (green with yellow undertones?/ I forget the name). But there was a bit of Pelikan Red Ink in the pen I forgot about. The ink color appears to be black with occasional green tint mixed in.attachicon.gif 0B62742E-AD43-498C-AA31-71D70C1F1A9C.jpeg

 

It looks like a full size J. http://www.esterbrook.net/j3.shtml


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#13 corgicoupe

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Posted 24 January 2020 - 16:14

Agreed.


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For love of it. And yet not waste time either.

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#14 pajaro

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Posted 24 January 2020 - 19:17

I think much of the success of our beloved Esties is in the excellent development of stainless for their nibs.
I cannot think of any other pen of that era 1940-1950 with stainless steels that have endured so well in time. 
Ditto for their amazing rubber sacs also :)

 

I think the durability might be due to the people then having made things well and to last.


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#15 Estycollector

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Posted 24 January 2020 - 20:26

 

I think the durability might be due to the people then having made things well and to last.

 

I do agree. There was not an interest in buying it twice. I use 100 year old straight razors and the quality of that steel to hold an edge never ceases to impress. 


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#16 AAAndrew

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 14:55

Esterbrook started as, and I would argue, was always, at its heart, a maker of nibs. They just so happened to start making the bodies to go with them about 70 years into their company history. As a maker of the best American-made steel pens, they knew steel, they knew what makes a good nib, and how to make one. 

 

I'm sure others will have the details, but sometime in the early 30's Esterbrook developed an alloy of chromium steel for their Estercrome line of dip pens. This or a similar alloy of steel was also used in their Re-new-point nibs, and there was called Duracrome.  

 

In their 1938 catalog, they introduce the Estercrome Styles section of their dip pens with this description: 

 

"Recent scientific developments of allow steels have proven the merits of Chromium. Its use has made possible corrosion-proof, stainless and wear-resisting materials and a surface of lasting beauty. With these obvious advantages, Chromium alloys are replacing less efficient materials. Recognizing its value, Esterbrook has developed a Chromium allow especially adapted to the manufacture of pen points. The result is the Estercrome line of pens shows here. To the unusual high quality of Esterbrook has been added a durability and long life which this new material now makes possible." 

 

 

fpn_1580136799__img_3267.jpg

 

 

The Estercrome dip pens never really took off. They were stiffer than their spring steel counterparts, and they were also introduced at a time when fountain pens were becoming more affordable as well as popular. 

 

In the same 1938 catalog, 

 

"Duracrome is a solid metal of platinum-like appearance found only in the Esterbrook Fountain Pen. It is not a substitute for gold; it is not an imitation of gold. It represents a distinct advancement in the manufacture of fountain pen points. Duracrome is corrosion-proof and wear-resistant. It takes and holds a finely tempered point and permits scientific grading and perfect point duplication. Points of the same symbol number are identical in writing action. Esterbrook offers you the first complete line of fountain pens. In this line there is a point that you can recommend for any use to which a pen can be put." 

 

 

The emphasis is on the pen point or nib. The pen bodies came in a small range of colors and sizes. They were just not as important as the nibs, and it's the nibs where Esterbrook really shines. 

 

The 2556 was based on the Esterbrook #556 dip pen, one of the most popular general purpose dip pens Esterbrook made. Glad you found one you like. Taken care of, it will last you for a very long time. 



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#17 Estycollector

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 17:48

Esterbrook started as, and I would argue, was always, at its heart, a maker of nibs. They just so happened to start making the bodies to go with them about 70 years into their company history. As a maker of the best American-made steel pens, they knew steel, they knew what makes a good nib, and how to make one. 
 
I'm sure others will have the details, but sometime in the early 30's Esterbrook developed an alloy of chromium steel for their Estercrome line of dip pens. This or a similar alloy of steel was also used in their Re-new-point nibs, and there was called Duracrome.  
 
In their 1938 catalog, they introduce the Estercrome Styles section of their dip pens with this description: 
 

 
fpn_1580136799__img_3267.jpg
 
 
The Estercrome dip pens never really took off. They were stiffer than their spring steel counterparts, and they were also introduced at a time when fountain pens were becoming more affordable as well as popular. 
 
In the same 1938 catalog, 
 

 
The emphasis is on the pen point or nib. The pen bodies came in a small range of colors and sizes. They were just not as important as the nibs, and it's the nibs where Esterbrook really shines. 
 
The 2556 was based on the Esterbrook #556 dip pen, one of the most popular general purpose dip pens Esterbrook made. Glad you found one you like. Taken care of, it will last you for a very long time. 


Thank you for replying and sharing such good information. :)


Edited by Estycollector, 27 January 2020 - 22:23.

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