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The Ultimate Book Of Pens


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Hi All,

 

Having my interest sparked in Pens, I have look through a quite a number of Bookshops in Brisbane, Australia and have only found one book relating to pens. It's "The Ultimate Book of Pens" published by h.f.ullmann, unfortunately the book was sealed in heatshrink plastic so I have no idea as to the contents.

And it selling for about $110 US (or a pelikan M200 with a spare nib posted to Australia) so really want to know if it is any good.

 

Anyone own or read it?, if so reccommend it? if not is there a better book for just fountain pens for instance?

.....Or buy the Pelikan, read FPN and forget the book? :rolleyes:

 

regards

 

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I have a couple of books that I think are pretty good. I got them through "Other Sellers" on Amazon.com/us

 

One is Fountain Pens, The Collector's Guide to Selecting, Buying, and Enjoying New and Vintage Fountain Pens by Jonathan Steinberg. Its chapters are: 1. The early history of the fountain pen, 2. Self-filling pens, 3. Collecting fountain pens, 4. Fountain pen manufacturers. It also includes useful addresses, but since it was published in 1994, it doesn't have internet information. It doesn't have as much helpful information, such as value/prices, as the second one, but it has very nice pictures and covers a wide range of makers and styles of pens.

 

The second, and the more useful, IMO, is Fountain Pens Past & Present, Identification and Value Guide, 2nd Ed., by Paul Erano. It was published in 2004 and does give actual price ranges for the pens. It is more thorough and more complete than the other one, and if you're only going to get one (of these two), this is the one to get. Of course, 2004 prices may not be accurate today. Does anyone have any ideas on how 2004 prices might relate to today's prices?

 

The prices for both books were very reasonable, under $10 U.S. They were both used books but in excellent condition.

 

If you find any good FP books, post them here, o.k.? Anybody... I'm a big believer in reading books about things, but FPN is a great substitute.

Edited by doccandace
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This was one of the gifts I found under the Xmas tree :)

 

To be honest I only glanced through it but my impression is good. There is a comprehensive history of writing instruments and a long list of makes (a few I did not even know the existance!) with models, pictures, history etc... I did take a look to Pelikan and I found an accurate list of models and dates.

 

My impression is that the quality/price ratio is very good. And there are 500 pages to go through!

 

I found this link: http://www.tesco.com/books/product.aspx?R=9783833150999&bci=4294222543|Ullmann%20Publishing

 

Cheers, Andrea

 

Hi All,

 

Having my interest sparked in Pens, I have look through a quite a number of Bookshops in Brisbane, Australia and have only found one book relating to pens. It's "The Ultimate Book of Pens" published by h.f.ullmann, unfortunately the book was sealed in heatshrink plastic so I have no idea as to the contents.

And it selling for about $110 US (or a pelikan M200 with a spare nib posted to Australia) so really want to know if it is any good.

 

Anyone own or read it?, if so reccommend it? if not is there a better book for just fountain pens for instance?

.....Or buy the Pelikan, read FPN and forget the book? :rolleyes:

 

regards

 

Fof 3

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  • 4 weeks later...

we have it, not as comprehensive as Andreas Lambrou's Fountain pens of the world, but a very nice book, 500+ pages with 3 columns on each, one column for each of three languages, english, french and german (I think). Not an encyclopedia but a very interesting book with facts and social history and essays. The subtitle is manufacturers, designs and writing culture and that pretty much sums it up. A beautiful book.

 

I'd head towards AL's Fountain pens of the world if you want an encyclopedic pen book .....with this being one to buy after wards if you want to round out your knowledge.

 

stella

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Just got it a few days ago, at Chapters in Canada. Got it for 50 $ CAN.

 

Had a little more than a glance through it. It is in three languages : English, German and French.

 

It is much more comprehensive than other books in that the first 200 pages cover the historical, technical and sociological aspects of writing, with some consideration of marketing and design throughout the past century. It includes summaries on supports for writing throughout history (clay tablets, roman and greek wax tablets, parchment, papyrus and paper), as well as one on the develpment of inks through time. It also covers the development of other hand held writing instruments, such as the wood pencil, the mechanical pencil, the steel nib, before slipping into the history of the fountain pen, the materials used to make them, the diverse feeding systems. It also covers ball points right up to recent innovations, such as the electronic fountain pen.

 

The next 300 pages are "manufacturers' portraits". Not as extensive as Lambrou and other, and it may disappoint some for that aspect. However, the book is broader than most in that it does highlight European manufacturers more than most other books I have seen with the exception of French books. It is obviously German-made, and covers well German and Swiss manufacturers (Pelikan, Montblanc, Senator, Soennecken, and others), with plenty of illustrations from these. US readers will find it short on American pens.

 

Finally, the appendices are interesting: questions and answers on the world of pens and pencils, as well as an historical timetable on the development of writing instruments. The bibliography is interesting but not very extensive.

 

In short, a very useful reference book.

 

 

Fernan

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I found it at a library last weekend. In Italy is edited by Gibaudo Edizioni and is written in italian, english and french.

 

I give a more detailed look at the first part. The part before the advent of fountain pen was quite nice, but when I come to the beginning of fountain pen history there was the infamous ink blot fake history about Lewis Waterman losing his contract.

 

I stopped there, not looking for more, but I'm regretting not having looked for Eversharp history (just to see if their pencils were attributed to japanese Sharp). I just looked fast ahead to see that the later part of the book is about recent models, for which I have almost none interest.

 

So. at least for history, I cannot consider it an useful reference, it's more a damaging reference.

 

Simone

Fountain Pen Wiki - www.FountainPen.it

Fountain pen Chronology (need help to improve...)

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I picked up a copy at Levenger's Boston store last summer. At first glance it looks like it may be pretty good, but on actually reading it I found numerous inaccuracies (checked against other books in my collection). Among the most obvious errors is that General Dwight Eisenhower signed the German surrender with a ballpoint. (Wrong on two counts!) Given the cost of the book (US$75.00), I would have hoped for something better. There are too many other, better books available; it might be better to pass this one by.

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The part before the advent of fountain pen was quite nice, but when I come to the beginning of fountain pen history there was the infamous ink blot fake history about Lewis Waterman losing his contract.

 

Ciao Simone, interesting remark.

Could you point me towards some source were this story (I mean, the famous Waterman insurer story being a fake) is discussed?

 

Thank you in advance.

 

Andrea

<font face="Verdana"><b><font color="#2f4f4f">d</font></b><font color="#4b0082">iplo</font></font><br /><br /><a href='http://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/index.php?showuser=6228' class='bbc_url' title=''><font face="Trebuchet MS"><br /><font size="4"><b><font color="#8b0000"><font color="#696969">Go</font> <font color="#006400">To</font> <font color="#a0522d">My</font> <font color="#4b0082">FPN</font> Profile!</font></b></font></font><br /></a>

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The next 300 pages are "manufacturers' portraits". Not as extensive as Lambrou and other, and it may disappoint some for that aspect. However, the book is broader than most in that it does highlight European manufacturers more than most other books I have seen with the exception of French books. It is obviously German-made, and covers well German and Swiss manufacturers (Pelikan, Montblanc, Senator, Soennecken, and others), with plenty of illustrations from these. US readers will find it short on American pens.

 

Finally, the appendices are interesting: questions and answers on the world of pens and pencils, as well as an historical timetable on the development of writing instruments. The bibliography is interesting but not very extensive.

 

In short, a very useful reference book.

 

 

Fernan

 

That's very interesting to hear :) My gf also bought it at Chapter's and sent it to me via surface snail mail (so I'll still be waiting for a couple of weeks), but hearing it's about German pens makes me excited, since that's where I live.

Pretty neat to hear too that the history of writing instruments is also included. Only makes me more excited for the it.

 

As to errata in the book, I'm sure there's enough pen pundits on this site to point them out ;)

Edited by Ink Sandwich
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The part before the advent of fountain pen was quite nice, but when I come to the beginning of fountain pen history there was the infamous ink blot fake history about Lewis Waterman losing his contract.

 

Ciao Simone, interesting remark.

Could you point me towards some source were this story (I mean, the famous Waterman insurer story being a fake) is discussed?

 

Thank you in advance.

 

Andrea

This David Nishimura article is the best reference about it:

 

http://www.vintagepens.com/ink_blot.htm

 

Regards

Simone

Fountain Pen Wiki - www.FountainPen.it

Fountain pen Chronology (need help to improve...)

Old advertisement (needing new ones to enlarge the gallery...)

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The part before the advent of fountain pen was quite nice, but when I come to the beginning of fountain pen history there was the infamous ink blot fake history about Lewis Waterman losing his contract.

 

Ciao Simone, interesting remark.

Could you point me towards some source were this story (I mean, the famous Waterman insurer story being a fake) is discussed?

 

Thank you in advance.

 

Andrea

This David Nishimura article is the best reference about it:

 

http://www.vintagepens.com/ink_blot.htm

 

Regards

Simone

 

Grazie.

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I've been searching for the perfect book and there are just too many. I found two used books on Amazon and one New for $400 - there are no "used" copies for sale of this particular book.

Fountain Pens Past & Present, by: Paul Erano - $37.39

Fountain Pens of the World, by: Andreas Lambrou - $90

The other I can't even afford to type. Actually it was; The Ultimate Book of Pens, by: Barbro Garenfeld for $400.

The first two I can get used copies, which is fine by me.

 

I was trying to keep up with everyone's comments and got a little confused. Was there a final recommendation made and are any of the above part of that recommendation?

I know I am a bit late to the party on this subject since it is February 7th, but thought I'd give it a go. Having a bit of trouble identifying some pens and pricing well.

Thank you.

Judi

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Actually,depending on the brand of fountain pen that one likes,one can find(for the most

part)books that give information on the major brand that they're looking at. I have Andreas

Lambrou's first book on vintage f/p's(bought on fleabay for a small price);the history of

italian f/p's from the author herself(another fleabay find--2 vol. set);a small coffee-table

book on mostly italian f/p's with major german and american brands thrown in(another in-

expensive fleabay find);and of course Paul Erano's book on fountain pens that's already

been mentioned(found at a bookstore in an antique mall).

 

 

Fleabay is a good source for finding books about fountain pens. Another that is worldwide

and a good source for out-of-print books is abebooks.com

 

 

John

Irony is not lost on INFJ's--in fact,they revel in it.

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Thanks a million, John. I have a Dunhill that I swear I'm the only one in the world that has ever seen it. I'm exhausted from searching for information about this pen. I've been advised to ask for 400 to 225 for it and have dropped it to 195 with no bites. I'm hoping to find it in one of these books. I can usually find my pens someplace but this one is a mystery.

 

I appreciate your information. A member offered his Andreas Lambrou book at a very good price. I sure do need it.:rolleyes:

 

Take care.

Judi

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It is a beautiful book with nice pictures.

 

But it is by far not the ultimate book. It jumps through the history of the major brands, naming and picturing some famous pens but by no means extensive.

 

On the other hand, even if it is in 3 languages so the text is only 1/3d interesting it is a lot of book for the money. Great for someone starting in the hobby, but lacking on the plain extensive facts.

 

 

 

D.ick

~

KEEP SAFE, WEAR A MASK, KEEP A DISTANCE.

Freedom exists by virtue of self limitation.

~

 

 

 

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Dick,

Are you referring to Lambrou's book or the Ultimate Book of Pens? Is there a book you would recommend? I am expecting to receive Lambrou's book in about 5 days. Hopefully it will help me and I hope you're talking about the Ultimate Book of Pens in your note..

If not, I'll keep trying.

Thank you for responding.

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Dick,

Are you referring to Lambrou's book or the Ultimate Book of Pens? Is there a book you would recommend? I am expecting to receive Lambrou's book in about 5 days. Hopefully it will help me and I hope you're talking about the Ultimate Book of Pens in your note..

If not, I'll keep trying.

Thank you for responding.

I am referring to the ultimate book of pens.

 

 

The Lambrou books (he wrote several, I have only one of them) are much more encyclopedic.

 

Another very good book about the basics of pencollecting is Peter Twydle's book "Fountain Pens"

 

 

D.ick

~

KEEP SAFE, WEAR A MASK, KEEP A DISTANCE.

Freedom exists by virtue of self limitation.

~

 

 

 

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  • 3 years later...

I am guilty! I am one of the authors (G.B.) in the book. In the beginning we didn´t took the author Garenfeld for serious, when she came up at a penshow and was looking for co-authors. It is mainly a second edition of the book writing instruments from Dietmar Geyer (first published 1987 and I think as Writing instruments also available in English). To make it more lively collectors should write about some brands. It was a great experience. The German title is Kulturgeschichte der Schreibgeräte, so the translation would be History of fountain pens, but the publishers made "Ultimative...

Gerhard

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  • 6 years later...

I think it is a nice book. Easy to read, really good quality pictures, very accessible. The Japanese pens are rather absent, except for the Dunhill/Namiki and Pilot history, but for that we have the excellent Lambrou's book. All-in-all, happy to have it.

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