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  1. Tibaldi Impero Celluloid and Its Imitaors Tibaldi Impero celluloid is regarded by many pen collectors as the most beautiful material ever used for fountain pens. OMAS Arco Bronze may be the only other material in its class. Although the original Tibaldi company has been out of business for some years, rods of the Impero material have been somewhat available until relatively recently. The unavailability of genuine Impero rods may be why some resins that more or less explicitly emulate Impero celluloid’s appearance have appeared in several pen makers lines. I have a couple in my collection, and I will share photos comparing them with the real thing. The first of these to come to my attention was the “Blue Sorrento” resin used by Leonardo Officina Italiana in one of their Momento Zero issues. Leonardo did not promote this as resembling Impero, but the material reminded my of Impero, although it was more blue and a lot less black. The second was a Carina 14 from Atelier Lusso (Eric Sands) in the very attractive “Faux Tibaldi” resin cast by Jonathan Brooks. Although that material had some sparkly bits, it did have more of the Impero “feel” than the Italian resin used by Leonardo. Most recently, Brian Gray, owner of the Edison Pen Company, announced a new material in their “Production” Collier series, carried by their dealers. Brian called the material “Nighthawk.” He explicitly compared and contrasted this material to Tibaldi Impero.I found the photos most attractive and ordered a Collier in this material. When I put it side-by-side with my Leonardo Momento Zero Blue Sorrento, I discovered the two pens were made in the exact same material. The general feel of both Brooks’ Faux Tibaldi” and the Italian resin used by Leonardo and Edison are similar. Putting them next to each other, you see their differences quite clearly. I hope you find the photos interesting. Top to bottom :Lusso Pens Carina 14, Edison Pen Company Collier, Leonardo Momento Zero, Stipula for Mercury (a LE of 50 started by Tibaldi itself but completed by Stipula after Tibaldi's demise.) All these pens have italic nibs are a pleasure to write with, but that's another story for another day. David
  2. Hello everyone, I was reading a childhood memoir by Satyajit Ray (renowned Indian film-maker and writer). There, he mentioned of "black Waterman and Swan fountain pens which were made of a material called Gutta Percha". As a fountain pen enthusiast, naturally, I was curious. A quick Google search showed something related to dentistry instead of what I was looking for. Wikipedia says it is a form of latex. Does anybody have any idea what is Gutta Percha? Also, does anyone own a waterman or swan (or any other brand's pen) made of this material? warm regards, Auntor
  3. I do own some celluloid pens, a Parker Vacumatic pen and pencil set and a Montblanc from 1951. They’re nice, but I don’t really understand all the love for celluloid. As far as I know, celluloid was first used as a poor man’s replacement for ivory, but is still expensive and difficult to produce by modern standards. It tends to shrink, warp, and discolor with age, and it bursts into flames with relatively little provocation. I can see why it is rarely used today. It seems to me that acrylics, which can be beautifully colored and do not have those disadvantages, are altogether superior. Yet, celluloid seems to hold a special place in the hearts of fountain pen aficionados. Why? Why is Montblanc’s precious resin the object of criticism for being “just plastic” while celluloid is immune?

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