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A Very Unusual American Swan


MarcShiman
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A very strange Mabie Todd Swan, presumably American:

 

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7144/6698428727_0be79d594a_b.jpg

 

This pen has the right parts, sort of. The clip is right. The cap band arrangement isn't really right (not for a flattop). The stamps on the top and bottom of the pen are right - sort of, they are gold colored. The stamp on the barrel is very incorrect.

 

The section is what is really weird on this pen. The barrel opening is huge - too big for a Mabie Todd 46 section. The opening in the section that is in there for the nib is too small for a 6 size nib. Its marked 46 on the end of the pen, but I'll be damned if I can figure out how to fit a 6 size nib in there..

 

This is a big fat pen. I've got to think that someone in the factory made it lunchtime with leftover parts (although I'm not sure where this particular celluloid came from - or maybe bakelite?.

Edited by MarcShiman
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Just WHAT was going on in that factory??!!! Your FP reminds me of my Mosaic! It has the same aesthetic as yours, more of the body of a blackbird, but with the Mosaic design sold only for Swan FP's. I was thinking mine was a prototype. Hmm. take a look:

post-108733-0-17598000-1441012287_thumb.jpg

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at the cap end it appears to have a slightly oily sheen. Though it seems doubtful that MT US would be using casein, perhaps MT came into possession of a casein rod, and this was entirely an experiment with the material? See a Galalith manufacturer sample card at JewelHistory dot com, Art Deco Galalith entry March 27, 2009 (no association yadda yadda, or to content - just to see the sample card)

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Just WHAT was going on in that factory??!!! Your FP reminds me of my Mosaic! It has the same aesthetic as yours, more of the body of a blackbird, but with the Mosaic design sold only for Swan FP's. I was thinking mine was a prototype. Hmm. take a look:

As I have remarked elsewhere, I have not heard anywhere else of a Swan self-filler in the 47 "Mosaic" material. I happen to know also that this particular pen carries no Swan on its barrel, just "Mabie Todd"

 

Could this be a "lunchtime special" or perhaps a prototype? It has a Swan 2 nib so I presume it is slightly larger than a Blackbird, also the clip is different from the norm - it resembles the clip on my "L300/64" i.e. without the "line" down the centre.

 

Cob

Edited by Cob

fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


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Cob, if only we could have been flies on the wall!

Yes, and we would have been able to observe that absent-minded so-and-so in the stamping section, asleep on the job!

 

C.

fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


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I believe its plastic. The walls are way too thin for bakelite, it would have fallen apart by now. I'm pretty sure it isn't casein either.

 

My thoughts on this - if you look at the last pen of this picture:

 

fpn_1440171296__swan_pens_from_dc_2.jpg

 

...this color was called "Mottled Mahogany" in a 1931 ad. Mabie Todd moved from hard rubber to plastics somewhere between 28 and 32 in the second generation of eternals. First to go was red hard rubber, and I don't think it was replaced (although I need to check the one in the picture). Then black hard rubber, as 2nd generation black eternals are typically made of plastic (called "ebony" in the literature).

 

I am assuming that "mottled mahogany" was what they went to when they got rid of mottled hard rubber (MHR). My thoughts are that this odd pen was an attempt with one of the plastics they got from a supplier to see how it would look.

Edited by MarcShiman
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