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A small pen with a MONSTER nib (Mabie Todd Swan)


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15 replies to this topic

#1 bluemoon

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Posted 18 May 2008 - 18:26

This is my first review, so please bear with me.....

The pen is a Mabie todd Swan. from The late '10 or early '20... cant tell exactly, the body has inscriptions "MAY 21.18 PAT PDG". I am not going to mark each part individually, as i think it is a unfair to judge a 80 yrs old pen in present context... I am just going to share my experience with it.

The pen:- The pen itself is exactly 11cm long, a ringtop lever filler(English made). The colour is blue marbled, exactly like blue on blue lapis lazuli Parker Duofolds. The look(not apparent in my extraordinarily bad photography) is simply gorgeous. The ringtop, lever,
and three rings in the cap, all is gold filled. The good thing is it is completely free of any brassing that often plagues vintage swans(even the lever). Posted it becomes 14cms, not bad for my medium size hands. All the repair I performed on it is only a good flush and installing a new sac. It is good to go again.

NIB:- The model no is 172/52, stamped on the back. So it has a #2 swan nib with heart shaped breather hole. The nib is a broad stub superflex.

Performance:- This is the best part of the pen. I am a completely F/XF buff.... all my M/B/BB 51 or vacs stay on shelf when I carry a XF 51 aero. But this pen has changed it... No Superflex nib I have ever seen(quite a few...) have such smoothness,
such beautiful springy feel and controlled ink flow... the ink flow specially is excellent. not less enough to find the
pen skipping, not so much to soak in the paper.

Overall this pen demonstrates why we all love vintage pens so much. Only if there had had been a modern pen to match this..... sigh....

Attached Images

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Edited by MYU, 02 December 2008 - 01:17.


"This is my prayer to thee, my lord---strike,
strike at the root of penury in my heart.
Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.
Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in service.
Give me the strength never to disown the poor
or bend my knees before insolent might.
Give me the strength to raise my mind high above daily trifles.
And give me the strength to surrender my strength to thy will with love. "


Rabindranath Tagore.

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#2 vermiculus

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Posted 18 May 2008 - 18:29

Nice nib! Where did you find it?

- Tris

#3 bluemoon

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Posted 18 May 2008 - 18:42

QUOTE(vermiculus @ May 18 2008, 11:59 PM) View Post
Nice nib! Where did you find it?

- Tris


All of my collection is from local vintage pen dealers or flea market..... thumbup.gif I give them a little TLC, and most of them they are as good as new.

"This is my prayer to thee, my lord---strike,
strike at the root of penury in my heart.
Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.
Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in service.
Give me the strength never to disown the poor
or bend my knees before insolent might.
Give me the strength to raise my mind high above daily trifles.
And give me the strength to surrender my strength to thy will with love. "


Rabindranath Tagore.

#4 vermiculus

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Posted 18 May 2008 - 18:56

QUOTE(bluemoon @ May 18 2008, 07:42 PM) View Post
All of my collection is from local vintage pen dealers or flea market..... thumbup.gif I give them a little TLC, and most of them they are as good as new.


I have been lusting after something like that for a while - I've never tried a proper flex. Great find! I haven't found any flea markets in my area where pens surface very often, so I usually use eBay.

#5 hari317

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 05:55

Wow! Nice pen.
In case you wish to write to me, pls use ONLY email by clicking here. I do not check PMs. Thank you.

#6 Lloyd

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 06:48

You're gonna need to buy a lot of ink to feed that monster.
"Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination."
Oscar Wilde

#7 Ghost Plane

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 11:11

Oh man, that is pen porn for the B nib lover! wub.gif

#8 girlieg33k

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Posted 24 May 2008 - 16:40

Congrats on your lovely pen! The vintage Mabie Todds (Swans, Blackbirds, and Swallows) are great finds! Love all of mine.
Talking about fountain pens is like dancing about architecture.

#9 Martius

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 04:57

Very nice! Swans are pretty underrated, I think. Not only do some of them have honest-to-goodness superflex, but they have some very interesting nib shapes as well. I have one (an English Swan) that has a semi-flex nib not unlike a Binder "Condor" nib, which alternates between fine right-side-up and paintbrush width upside down.
"Can I see Arcturus from where I stand?" -RPW

#10 bluemoon

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 07:24

QUOTE(Lloyd @ May 24 2008, 12:18 PM) View Post
You're gonna need to buy a lot of ink to feed that monster.


Very true......


"This is my prayer to thee, my lord---strike,
strike at the root of penury in my heart.
Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.
Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in service.
Give me the strength never to disown the poor
or bend my knees before insolent might.
Give me the strength to raise my mind high above daily trifles.
And give me the strength to surrender my strength to thy will with love. "


Rabindranath Tagore.

#11 bluemoon

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 07:28

QUOTE(Ghost Plane @ May 24 2008, 04:41 PM) View Post
Oh man, that is pen porn for the B nib lover! wub.gif


True... using the full flex the down stroke is 2.5 mm.

"This is my prayer to thee, my lord---strike,
strike at the root of penury in my heart.
Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.
Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in service.
Give me the strength never to disown the poor
or bend my knees before insolent might.
Give me the strength to raise my mind high above daily trifles.
And give me the strength to surrender my strength to thy will with love. "


Rabindranath Tagore.

#12 bossy

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 23:56

Nice and bold, but a refill every other page¿
Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right
to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers,
and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
Revelation 22:14-15

#13 JRodriguez

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Posted 26 May 2008 - 00:35

Gadzooks! What a fantastic nib! Martius is spot on about the underratedness of Swans. There's some fantastic specimens out and about.

#14 EventHorizon

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Posted 28 May 2008 - 03:48

SWEEEEEET.
Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.
Isaac Asimov, Salvor Hardin in "Foundation"
US science fiction novelist & scholar (1920 - 1992)

There is probably no more terrible instant of enlightenment than the one in which you discover your father is a man--with human flesh.
Frank Herbert, Dune
US science fiction novelist (1920 - 1986)

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#15 ethernautrix

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Posted 28 May 2008 - 06:43

Very nice!

Me, I'm no good with stubs, broads, obliques, italics, even fine or extra italics -- just can't... do it. Tried.

But that looks really cool! Tempts me to try again....

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#16 freewheelingvagabond

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Posted 03 October 2010 - 18:02

<!--quoteo(post=615070:date=May 18 2008, 11:59 PM:name=vermiculus)--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(vermiculus @ May 18 2008, 11:59 PM) View Post</div><div class='quotemain'><!--quotec-->Nice nib! Where did you find it?

- Tris<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->

All of my collection is from local vintage pen dealers or flea market..... <img src="http://www.fountainp...#>/thumbup.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":thumbup:" border="0" alt="thumbup.gif" /> I give them a little TLC, and most of them they are as good as new.

What is this 'little TLC'? some magic potion?
https://soundcloud.com/freewheelingvagabond






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