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Sumgai Or... (Why I Love Miscellaneous Lots)


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i recently picked this lot up off ebay for $135 shipped. that doesn't sound like a sumgai find at all, and maybe it's not. i took a gamble on this bunch of pens advertised simply as "4 FOUNTAIN PENS MISC NAMES COLORS" because i saw something in it the minute it was posted, bid on it immediately, and nursed that bid for nearly a week until it closed. as i expected, one other bidder tried to snipe me in the closing seconds, but i had a much higher backup bid, and survived.

so what did i see? and was it worth it?




if i'm wrong, then i'm about $100 in the hole, but even so, there are at least two other good pens there i can probably recover that investment from.

will post better pics and report more about condition, etc. when the lot arrives in a few days.

Check out my blog and my pens

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Is that big pen a Dunn Dreadnaught? If so, very cool :)

Currently using:Too many pens inked to list, I must cut back! :) I can guarantee there are flighters, urushi, and/or Sheaffer Vac-fillers in the mix!!!

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The Lapis Lady Duofold?

It looks Jade Green to me, although I may be wrong.

Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.


—Oscar Wilde

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the duofold looks jade green (badly discolored, as usual) to me as well.


the prize in the lot (i'm hoping) is the dunn dreadnaught, the big pen with the bakelite barrel (yes, this was bakelite); the barrel's gone milky so that may indicate a problem, and the little red knob at the end is the more fragile casein variety, but it looks to be all there, and i'm betting that a good restorer can put it back in business.


for more on the dunn pen, see here:



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Very cool, congratulations! I'm looking forward to your updates.

Currently using:Too many pens inked to list, I must cut back! :) I can guarantee there are flighters, urushi, and/or Sheaffer Vac-fillers in the mix!!!

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  • 3 weeks later...
the dunn dreadnaught cleaned up pretty well:


the bakelite barrel has discolored into (for me) a rather fetching cafe au lait, so i don't mind, especially since i can find no signs of cracking or crazing.

the nib is gorgeous, although i haven't tweaked it yet to smoothen it and improve the flow:


the filler mechanism actually works and is pretty smooth, although as you can see from the droplets of water on the rod, there's probably a gasket somewhere within that needs replacement.


and then there's that odd two-part cap originally meant to protect the nib while dipping (and potentially creating a bigger mess):


the casein red plug still screws into the barrel, but it's a bit ratty and i hope someone out there remanufactures these things in sturdier plastic:


so ii'll be keeping this for now more as a specimen than a writer, but it's practically a free pen, since i've sold two of the other pens (a wahl ringtop and a lady duofold ringtop) that came in the lot and recovered the cost of the whole lot ;)

now from the same seller, just minutes ago, i got a new lot of miscellaneous pens (an eversharp, a salz, a moore, and i'm not sure what else) for $55. should be another interesting project.


Edited by penmanila

Check out my blog and my pens

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      @Texas42 Thank you. I myself have recently had the experience of cleaning out a Wing Sung 699, in which the iron-gall ink has been sitting for six months. No damage to the metal piston rod (whereas, in a Wing Sung 3013 vacuum-filler, it would have been corroded, turned green, and contaminated the ink in mere weeks), but there was a ring of colour at the far end of the barrel that wouldn't budge, and I found it impossible to unscrew the filling mechanism to clean the interior wall of the ink rese
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      Ah Ruaidhri ya wee heid banger, you do indeed have an Irishman’s way wid dose words now. I’ll be from outer Aberdeenshire up in the blizzard riven braes of the Grampians.  Amateur medicine and surgery is it? Well what noble aspirations you do possess, we need to encourage such noble experimentations.  I pondered on leaving my own battered shell to science, but, until I read your pearls of wisdom and lament, I had comedown on the side of leaving my body to Findus frozen foods.  However, your rema
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