Jump to content
Classifieds is broken, please do not submit any new ads ×

How Many Pens Make You A Collector?


sidthecat
 Share

Recommended Posts

An antiques dealer once told me: "If you have three of something, you're a collector." I happened to recollect this the other day when I realized I had too many pens to simply put in a drawer anymore. And If I buy that Moore ringtop on eBay I will become a Specialty Collector - a truly scary thought.

 

How do you define, and possibly constrain, that acquisitive urge? Number? Kind? Condition? What makes you pull the trigger?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 83
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • ANM

    3

  • OcalaFlGuy

    4

  • The Blue Knight

    3

  • inkstainedruth

    3

I concur with the antiques dealer. I was thinking 2-3. Some say you are a collector when your collection has a structure, a purpose, such as to collect every variant issued of a specific object, say Parker 51. But my definition is less constrained.

So, if you buy fountain pens because you like having them and not because you need them, you can call yourself a collector, even though guys with 20.000 dollar worth of pens might not be willing to call you one of them.

 

It`s all relative. :happy:

Edited by rochester21
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Are we distinguishing between users and collectors, or between normal people and fountain pen nuts?

 

I'm trying to get down to one carry pen and three at home, and I'm getting close. I believe I qualify as a user, but I'm also crazy.

Edited by sombrueil
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Two. One fountain pen gets you hooked. The second purchase means you are on your way...

http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/606/letterji9.png

 

I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.

 

Mark Twain

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"If you have three of something, you're a collector."

 

Last time I counted I had more than three socks. What does this make me?

Just like socks pens are objects that I actually use.

 

I'd rather call me an "amateur" (latin "amare" = to love), because "collecting" rather sounds like some serious business and I don't have serious intentions.

Greetings,

Michael

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think collecting is about attitude. It's about being interested in the things and in the history behind them. So you could have a collector's attitude to fountain pens and only have one pen, if you had spent a lot of time finding out about, say, your Vacumatic, how to date it, where it fitted in the Parker universe, and so on. But in the nature of things, if you do all that work, you'll probably end up owning more than one Vacumatic, indeed more than one Parker...

 

As for constraining the urge... I'm now increasingly saying to myself that ebay acquisitions will be limited to

  1. one-offs and real rarities. Custom pens, pens that come up once or twice a year.
  2. modern production models at less than half 'new' street price. And that is limited to Edison, Bexley, and Platinum.
  3. really interesting lots with a number of good vintage pens.
  4. five specific pens I need to fill the gaps in otherwise complete ranges.

That means I can't go out and splurge on a red Parker 45 just because I don't have one. And I also have a rule that I'm not allowed to buy anything new, from retailers, unless they have a sale on.

 

But there are no rules about what I can buy at flea markets, as long as I have money in my pocket :-)

Too many pens, too little time!

http://fountainpenlove.blogspot.fr/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One if your goal is to continue buying.

My Collection: Montblanc Writers Edition: Hemingway, Christie, Wilde, Voltaire, Dumas, Dostoevsky, Poe, Proust, Schiller, Dickens, Fitzgerald (set), Verne, Kafka, Cervantes, Woolf, Faulkner, Shaw, Mann, Twain, Collodi, Swift, Balzac, Defoe, Tolstoy, Shakespeare, Saint-Exupery, Homer & Kipling. Montblanc Einstein (3,000) FP. Montblanc Heritage 1912 Resin FP. Montblanc Starwalker Resin: FP/BP/MP. Montblanc Traveller FP.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My first thought was you are a collector if you buy one more than you need.

 

The question becomes then what do you need. I could easily justify two: one plus a spare. But then you NEED another pen so you can use a different color ink, then you NEED both a fine and a medium, then you NEED a nicer pen for long writing sessions.... then you NEED to try a piston filler. Then you NEED... Before long you have a bunch of pens. Then you realize if buy this particular pen, you will have one of each color, or some significant number of some model or brand or in some other way complete or add to your set of pens in some fashion. You buy an additional pen because of what you already have. You are officially a collector.

Adam

Dayton, OH

It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings.

-- Prov 25:2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think "collector" is a label, and attempts to define it by numbers is too simplistic. Right where I am presently sitting I can see four oil paintings, yet I would never consider myself an art collector. On the other hand, I do consider myself a "collector of writing instruments" (fountain pen collector is too restraining) because I have actively acquired, studied, curated, and displayed my pens and pencils. My collection began when I consciously decided that I wanted to collect--not when I had acquired a certain number. Of course, YMMV.

 

Dale

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the answer is 42.

So, what you're saying is that FP use and accumulation is the Answer to Life, the Universe and Everything? :lol:

Cool beans.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you have uninked pens laying about you're probably a collector...

Visconti Homo Sapiens; Lamy 2000; Unicomp Endurapro keyboard.

 

Free your mind -- go write

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A number is irrelevant. How you relate to the pens you have is the answer.

"When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick; and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

~ Benjamin Franklin

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the answer is 42.

That would be my son's answer as it is the answer to the universe. but do you have 42? ;)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Agree with some of the comments that it isn't about the number. I think when you start seeking or researching variants of the same pen or brand that makes you a collector. Sorry, but there isn't a single reason in the world that justifies those of us who own 51's with different caps

Short cuts make delays, but inns make longer ones.
Frodo Baggins, The Fellowship of the Ring, A Short Cut to Mushrooms

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think collecting is about attitude. It's about being interested in the things and in the history behind them. So you could have a collector's attitude to fountain pens and only have one pen, if you had spent a lot of time finding out about, say, your Vacumatic, how to date it, where it fitted in the Parker universe, and so on. But in the nature of things, if you do all that work, you'll probably end up owning more than one Vacumatic, indeed more than one Parker...

 

That's more or less how I see it. When I first started trying out fountain pens, each new pen was bought with the idea getting a better, or at least different, writing experience. I still would not buy a pen without intending to write with it. At some point, though, I started buying pens that were merely interesting to me, without any idea that they would be better than what I already had.

 

I probably became a collector when I already had a couple of Esterbrook Js, but decided that I wanted to get them in a few more colors rather than just buying new nibs for them. Or maybe it was when I saw a vintage Conklin Crescent filler and decided that I just had to have one.

 

For myself, this works better with vintage pens, but apparently there are people who want to get every color of Lamy Safari, or special editions like that maple Vanishing Point that came out a year or two ago.

 

Maybe another aspect of being a collector, and this relates to the original "how many pens" question, is that you don't consider selling off or giving away pens merely because you have too many. There are pens that I'd like to sell because they simply don't interest me any more, but there are others that I'll keep even though I'm unlikely to write with them again.

"So convenient a thing it is to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has a mind to do."

 

- Benjamin Franklin

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't see collecting as a pejorative concept, so I don't worry about what someone else thinks..

 

Buy what you can afford and what pleases you and enjoy them. Resell the ones you don't want anymore, but you will never find the really good ones if you stop at two or six because you don't want be a "collector". It's such a relative term.

Edited by ANM

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time. TS Eliot

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That would be my son's answer as it is the answer to the universe. but do you have 42? ;)

Incidentally am on 84 as my Wing Sung 590, bought only because people here were appreciative of it ,landed the day before.

 

Guess I have twice the answers I need :-)

A lifelong FP user...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share








×
×
  • Create New...