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Osmia 1222 Ef

osmia

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20 replies to this topic

#1 ralfstc

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Posted 14 April 2020 - 20:19

Hi folks,

 

I have picked up a very pretty green celluloid Osmia 1222 and it's on the way in the mail!

 

I've been trying to find out more about the specific model, and it's proving challenging, as Osmias are not mean to have 4-digit codes. It is a pre-war (therefore pre-F-C) button-filler. Looks like 2-diamond nib (obviously not a huge pen at 5'/125mm). It has the long cap top and a simple "Osmia" clip.

 

I'd be delighted if somebody could give me a sense of where this fits in the model line.

 

Thank you!

 

Ralf



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#2 Azuniga

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Posted 14 April 2020 - 21:26

I remember having seen a couple of Osmia 1222, because the four digit model number surprised me, in the Andy Lambrou book, they were dated 1931 & 1933 but he does not say more about them...

Now I am curious to know more too, some one here will know about it...



#3 ralfstc

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Posted 14 April 2020 - 21:52

I hope so! :-)



#4 OMASsimo

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Posted 15 April 2020 - 00:19

These are pretty rare, so there will be little information. I have a 222 which is a 1930s button filler. I wouldn't be surprised if there was some connection. If you could post pictures we could compare.



#5 ralfstc

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Posted 15 April 2020 - 01:42

Happy to do so once I get it-- the seller's pictures are quite dark and unhelpful!

 

Thanks for the interest!

 

Ralf



#6 ralfstc

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Posted 21 April 2020 - 19:16

Hi folks,

 

Here are some pics. You can see the celluloid is very reminiscent of a Parker Moderne type of pattern.

 

The pen is a button-filler. It's had its sac replaced, and the nib, tiny though it is (number 1), writes beautifully. When I cleaned it all out it contained about 226 liters of blue-black ink and the old sac could have been used as industrial adhesive.

 

I'd love some info on the pen. It's my first Osmia, and is quite delightful! But the shape says early 30s while the number MAY suggest 1950s. Most interesting.

 

I included a picture with its cousin, a Parker Duofold Junior.

 

Thanks for looking,

 

Ralf

 

 

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#7 Christopher Godfrey

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Posted 26 April 2020 - 19:10

You know, ralfstc, I have what I have always understood to be a <226>, bought a few years ago from the wonderful Cristof in Switzerland, and it is a <large> pen in very similar celluloid to yours (maybe a bit more green-ish?) and with an anonymous barrel -- no numerical engraving.  It has a large #6 nib and your new pen makes me wonder if perhaps mine ought to be designated <1226>?

 

For some incomprehensible reason I seem to be unable to attach a photo -- damn!



#8 ralfstc

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Posted 27 April 2020 - 02:15

Hi CG,

 

There does seem to have been a series that ran 222, 224, and 226 so yours could well be right. Osmia seem pretty well ordered with their numbers (as far as I can tell, the final number should always relate to nib size). All the more reason for mine to be an outlier. Fabulous nib on the 1222, I bet the 226 is lovely too!

 

Best

 

Ralf



#9 Christopher Godfrey

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Posted 27 April 2020 - 13:38

It was just a passing thought, Ralf, and I should trust Cristof, of course...so 226 it is.  I'll try to upload once again. 

 

No, cannot do so, even when I reduce the photo down in size to tiny.



#10 OMASsimo

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Posted 27 April 2020 - 18:57

Hi CG,

 

There does seem to have been a series that ran 222, 224, and 226 so yours could well be right. Osmia seem pretty well ordered with their numbers (as far as I can tell, the final number should always relate to nib size). All the more reason for mine to be an outlier. Fabulous nib on the 1222, I bet the 226 is lovely too!

 

Best

 

Ralf

 

Hi,

 

Sorry, I meant to reply to this earlier but wanted to make photos first. No chance, just too busy. So, I'll show pictures later.

 

Osmias numbering system was kind of systematic but with limitations. I knew only about two- and three-digit numbers and the 22x series was produced in the 1930s as a series of coloured celluloid button fillers. Throughout the years, the last digit indicated some sort of size but probably it wasn't necessarily the nib size number. E.g., I have several 74 models which have #3 nibs, but they were replacements obviously. My 34G has a #3 nib but I'm not sure if it is the original one or a replacement. I'm not sure if a pen made for a #4 nib could be equipped with a #3 as well. My 44, which should be very close in age to your pen due to its clip, has an original Supra nib, which has no size number but looks like a #4. My 222 has a replacement #2 nib but is slightly younger than yours judging from its clip.

 

Later, that is post-war, pens have a pretty clear numbering system. First digit is the model series, last digit the nib size, if it's 2-digit it has a steel nib, if the first digit is doubled, it's a 14k gold nib. The last pens made under the name of Osmia in the 1960s were the 66 and 77 Progress, which do not fit into the numbering system and have nothing in common with the Progress series of the 1930s.

 

But now to your pen: It looks VERY similar to the 222 model, the most significant difference is size. My 222 is only 111 mm long and made of a different celluloid. However, I have another pen branded by a stationary shop in Frankfurt/Main that showcases the same celluloid as your pen and, except for the clip and imprints, is almost identical with the 222. They even share the same threads so that I can exchange all parts between the two pens. Given that the DIN system of standards started in 1918, this might not be over-interpreted but it's still surprising. 

 

One thing I noticed is that your nib seems to show a #1 imprint inside the diamond on the nib. So, what size is it really? Your nib imprint also looks different from any Osmia nib I've ever seen, actually older.

 

In any case, you've rot a really rare gem, congratulations!



#11 ralfstc

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Posted 28 April 2020 - 17:45

Thanks, it's a lovely pen. Irrespective of rarity, I really enjoy it. I can check the nib size-- what's the length of a standard Osmia number 1 or 2?



#12 OMASsimo

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Posted 28 April 2020 - 18:39

Fortunately, loveliness and rarity aren't mutually exclusive. Osmia pens are among my top favourites and are among the best vintage pens ever produced in my opinion.

 

To answer your question, the length may vary but the diameter at the section should be distinctive. When I measure from edge to edge right where the nib enters the section, all my #2 measure 4.5 mm, the #3 around 5.0 mm, and the #4 roughly 5.5 mm. Different #2 nibs vary quite considerably in shape and length but the #2 feeds are the same size and quite distinct from #3 and #4 feeds.



#13 ralfstc

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Posted 28 April 2020 - 22:32

Ah! That's really helpful. My measurement is 4mm, so I assume that it is indeed a standard number 1 nib.

 

Thanks,

 

R.



#14 OMASsimo

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Posted 08 May 2020 - 20:16

My apologies for not being back earlier and again apologies that I still didn't get around to take pictures of the 222 and its no-name sibling. The one thing that came in between, besides work, is that I was lucky enough to find and be able to purchase an Osmia 223 in excellent original condition! It's fully restored and in use by now and I decided to first take pictures of this new 223 instead of the 222. But I promise I will deliver the other pictures as soon as I can.

 

So, here they come:

 

image.jpg

 

 

 

image.jpg

 

 

This pen came in a box most probably from the 1930s with an imprint of a Munich jeweller and goldsmith. This shop doesn't exist anymore in contrast to the Frankfurt stationer mentioned above. It's unclear, though, whether or not this box has any relation to the pen or not.

 

As you can see, most of the design features are very similar to your pen. The one exception is the clip. Your clip has the ball as a reference to the Parker Duofold and thus points to an earlier production. My pen most likely is slightly younger but not much. The clip is already the typical "Heidelberg clip" that you also find on many other pens produced in that area. You can also date this pen roughly from the imprint on the barrel:

 

image.jpg

 

Besides being in unsusually good condition for a 1930s pen's imprint, you see that the diamond shaped company logo is still missing the circle around it. This was changed slightly later but I don't know which year exactly. My 222 already shows the new logo on the barrel, the same one as on the nib.

 

This brings me to the nib shown here:

 

image.jpg

 

 

The imprint looks like on yours and it is a ML (medium left oblique) indeed in agreement with the imprint on the barrel. I'm pretty sure it is the original nib. And it is a #3 consistent with the model number 223.

 

Last but not least a size comparison between the 223 and 222 (all in mm):

 

Length closed:      115/111

Length uncapped: 108/102

Length posted:      141/135

Diameter barrel:   12.3/10.5

Diameter section:  9.2/8.3 (measured at the thinnest)

Diameter cap:      13.7/12.3

 

It would be great if you could share your measurements for the records.

 

I bet I don't have to state that it's a fantastic writer, of course. :)



#15 ralfstc

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Posted 14 May 2020 - 17:39

What a gorgeous pen!

 

1222 dimensions:

 

Length closed:      124

Length uncapped: 117

Length posted:      146

Diameter barrel:    11.3

Diameter section:  9.4

Diameter cap:      12.7

 

I was expecting more dimensions in common. As in ANY of them!

 

Ralf



#16 OMASsimo

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Posted 14 May 2020 - 22:38

Thanks, I really lucked out. These 1930s celluloid button fillers all are gorgeous, your 1222 as well. I hope to get around to shoot pictures of the 222 and the corresponding no-name pen on the weekend.

 

The comparison of the dimensions is quite interesting. It almost looks like the 1222 is kind of a stretched version of a 222 (but not quite). It's probably another design family with different proportions but the same design elements as the 22x series.



#17 OMASsimo

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Posted 17 May 2020 - 19:07

Finally, here are the pictures of my 222 together with an almost identical button filler with an imprint reading "JUWEL // Carl Klippel, Frankfurt a/M". The latter seems to be made of the same kind of celluloid as your 1222. My Osmia 222 showcases a different and very pretty celluloid similar to "cracked ice" but in a caramel colour. The nib had been replaced by a no-name steel nib and the hard rubber parts were in poor condition when I got it. But no complaints, it was a gift from my favourite stationer. :) I insisted on paying for this little gem but he wouldn't let me. By the way, I bought the other pen for 1 € plus shipping! Anyway, I restored the 222 and replaced the nib by a De La Rue Onoto #2 nib. Why? Because it was the right size, the right era (1930s), and a similar quality. Someday I may find the correct nib and will be happy to swap it. And funny enough, the JUWEL apparently has an exchanged nib as well because the barrel imprint indicates another kind of nib point. This indicates that in both cases the owners liked their pens enough to go through the trouble of replacing a probably broken nib. The JEWEL was replaced by a really nice though curious 14k gold nib, by the way.

 

 

image.jpg

 

 

image.jpg

 

 

image.jpg



#18 ralfstc

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Posted 20 May 2020 - 16:28

Wow, yes, that's an identical celluloid as far as I can tell. Overall the impression of the 222 is that it is a little stubbier than the 1222, which is a thin and long pen. They are all quite wonderful! 

 

Inspired by the 1222, I have a 994 on the way (the vacumatic pump type) in brown stripes, bought on the FPN classifieds. Seems a little bigger and looks really stunning. 

 

Next step will be an Osmia piston filler. Maybe an 883/4 or a 74?

 

I do love these old German pens. So solid, and terrific writers. They make me happy :-)

 

R.



#19 OMASsimo

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 22:38

Wow, yes, that's an identical celluloid as far as I can tell. Overall the impression of the 222 is that it is a little stubbier than the 1222, which is a thin and long pen. They are all quite wonderful! 

 

Inspired by the 1222, I have a 994 on the way (the vacumatic pump type) in brown stripes, bought on the FPN classifieds. Seems a little bigger and looks really stunning. 

 

Next step will be an Osmia piston filler. Maybe an 883/4 or a 74?

 

I do love these old German pens. So solid, and terrific writers. They make me happy :-)

 

R.

 

 

Down the Osmia rabbit hole? ;)   I certainly won't blame you. I'm curious about the 994, a model I don't have in my collection. This sounds like a pen from the per-war Progress series. I hope you're going to present the pen here.

 

The 88x and 7x series are quite different animals. The 74 is a pre-war piston filler in guilloched celluloid. There was a lady size 72 and a bigger 76 as well but the 74 is the one that is found most often. If I'm not mistaken, they were placed in the middle price range of Osmia, which all were pretty expensive at the time. (One of the reasons why the company was struggling economically) But the 74 was so popular that many of them were repaired and fitted with replacement nibs to keep them working. So, watch out that the barrel imprint matches the nib if you are interested in original condition.

The 88x series are more modern post-war piston fillers of the Supra series of the early 50s. The early versions of the 88x still have a simple piston mechanism covered by a blind cap but later models have a modern differential piston. They all have bi-colour Supra nibs but those are a bit stiffer than pre-war Supras in my experience. Still outstanding writers and extremely solid pens. In my opinion, they still had the best nibs of the era.

 

Happy writing! :)



#20 ralfstc

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 23:43

Indeed. And I just accidentally bought a 224, on its way from Seattle to Victoria (about 120km, or three weeks at current postal speeds). It looks like at has a number 5 nib in it, so that's interesting!

 

Apologies for the typo, it's a 294 not a 994. Glorious pen. I'll take some photos soon . . . 







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