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How Far We Can Define A Pen As Vintage!



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We could try this: Contemporary pens (last 10 years); Modern pens (11 to 25 years); Vintage pens (at least 50 years old); Antique pens (over 100 years old). What about pens between 26 and 49 years old: well, perhaps they are just old used pens.

 

There is one advantage of using time: take a pen like a poster mentioned, Parker 51 and another, say something new this year. The Parker 51 is already old, but in time the new pen will become old and therefore vintage, while the Parker will become an antique. You need a moving framework so new pens can age and become vintage, no matter how dreadful they are today. 50 years from now, someone on whatever Ebay looks like then will be hovering over the buy button for a vintage 2015 FP of no particuilar merit.

 

That's why you really can't fix around a particular pen.

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One recently called the Mont Blanc a cheap, plastic production pen. ({Gasp} Sacrilege.) Though I think he was trying to be funny.

 

 

I'm not sure - MB is probably the most loved and hated brand out there: Loved for their long history of making great pens, their great designs and their fame. Hated for being a non-fountain-pen-guy-fountain-pen and for certain quality issues when it comes to their new pens. The opinion that their modern pens are best described af cheap plastic pens is, to my knowledge, not that uncommon. I would not go that far, although I do think that they have made vintage pens of a considerably better quality, and that modern Pelikans are keeping the quality up to a higher degree. No offence intended, and I do own and use (a few) modern MB's myself.

 

 

 

I think any pen put on the market before the Parker 51 is vintage.

 

 

You hear that a lot. The only question, then, is whether to include the grand old 51 or not. I think that they have now entered vintage-land according to most people.

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I think any pen put on the market before the Parker 51 is vintage. The 51, with its streamlined styling, is more modern looking than the open nib pens made after it, so it's hard to consider the 51 vintage where all the newer antique look pens are considered modern.

 

I don't think that's valid. The 51 was introduced in 1941, just before the start of WWII. A lot of pens that are classics, and vintage, were introduced after that. Think of the Triumph pens and its variants. Think of the PFM and snorkel, which are classic and vintage. You may not like the Sheaffer plastic pens of the 50s, but they are vintage.

 

I also think that 50 years or older is too restrictive. Maybe 40, but not 50.

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For the fun of it I asked my wife, who doesn't collect pens, what the word vintage meant. Her response was,"Anything over 50 years old.....you're vintage." I guess that settles that! I would consider my collection mostly a collection of vintage pens, pens made between 1898 and 1950. When I'm describing pens I often say vintage 1930, or vintage 1940, referring to the approximate date of manufacture. Perhaps we should just use vintage in that way, to describe the year of manufacture and not have vintage carry any other meaning.

 

Funny I don't like using 'antique' for fountain pens. When I think of antique I think of something that is no longer usable, something that is just put on display to look at because it is old or has some historical or is of personal interest.

 

I have a Weidlich eye dropper filler pen from about 1898 with a most wonderful nib. I love writing letters with it. It is a beautiful, fully functional pen...call it quite old, but not an antique.

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When I'm describing pens I often say vintage 1930, or vintage 1940, referring to the approximate date of manufacture. Perhaps we should just use vintage in that way, to describe the year of manufacture and not have vintage carry any other meaning.

 

 

We already have "circa" or "s." (1930s, 1940s, etc.)

 

One thing is for sure: "vintage" means different things to different people. Its preference over the terms "old" or "used" by sellers to create a positive impression by association ( the link to fine wine is undeniable) have meant that it's been so overused as to be rendered meaningless, like "amazing" or the odious "awesome." I would say that it still suggests "not new," but in the dictionary and to at least one commenter in this thread a retro design in a new pen merits the term.

Edited by Manalto

James

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Does the seller have the right to insist that a 871 Sheaffer Balance Classic 90s is a vintage FP?, actually I've searched whole the net to buy a similar one but the result was always out of stock!!!

Edited by H1N
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Does the seller have the right to insist that this 871 Sheaffer Balance Classic 90s is a vintage FP?

 

In this country anyone has the right to insist anything, and they do. Now whether he's correct in calling it vintage is what this whole thread is about. I'd ask him, oh-so-innocently, "Do you mean to say it's used?"

James

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Nothing wrong with using the word 'antique' to describe a very old pen. I think, though, like real antiques, if it isn't functional or useful then it is just old junk, or in the museum.

 

As in anything, caveat emptor. However, we could help by not abusing terms ourselves and leaving the buzzy terms to folks who have no clue what they're offering, or the reissues/limited editions marketers, to try to sell steak through the sizzle.

 

So, here's some other terms we could use: :D

  1. zeitgeist pen: a vintage, classic pen that defined an era, set the writing world on a new course.
  2. trendy pen: a pen that was a flash in the pan, favoured for awhile but lacked staying power
  3. primal or ur pen: a pen from which a whole new pattern or type of pen flows
  4. venerable pen: one that writers bow down to as of such earth shaking importance that life is enhanced by basking in its aura
  5. admirable pen: one that has attributes that delight, but the pen itself isn't particularly noteworthy; a back-handed complement, a nice try pen
  6. matriarchal/patriarchal pen: one your mother/father bought you
  7. big name pen: a pen made by a big name company, always used pejoratively
  8. bush-league pen: a pretty bad pen given to children to ruin their handwriting
  9. tacky/naf pen: a pen covered in gold, silver, filigree, and other junk to jack up the price; often referred to as a limited edition pen and sold to collectors with too much time on their hands
  10. DIY pen: a pen that needs to be completely reworked upon purchase, not fit for purpose, but sold as though it worked; a kit pen.
  11. charity pen: a non-working pen found in a charity shop or country auction
  12. corporate pen: a pen given to employees to remind them where they work

Oh gosh, I'm getting silly. Your turn.

...be like the ocean...

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Why not call dip pens vintage and FP's modern?

 

Because modern dip pen nibs and holders are still being made - see Brause, D. Leonardt and Nikko, for example.

The materials have generally been upgraded to a better grade of stainless steel, and modern manufacturing can produce stiffer nibs with finer points for tasks like Manga drawing.

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“Them as can do has to do for them as can’t.


And someone has to speak up for them as has no voices.”


Granny Aching

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When Sheaffer was closing the Ft Madison service center, their definition of "vintage" was anything made before 1982. Pens made in the 1970s are now, or soon will be, 40 years old. :o As much as I hate to say it, I think that qualifies as vintage.

That's exactly what I was thinking. After 40 years a pen should be declared vintage

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Perhaps the difficulty here is that in commercial usage the word vintage is one of those very rare English conjugated adjectives that is adjusted according to not the noun being modified, but to the owner of the object being described--thus:

 

My pen is vintage.

 

Your pen is not aging well.

 

His pen is a piece of junk.

 

This misunderstanding of English grammar can make precise definition impossible.

ron

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Perhaps the difficulty here is that in commercial usage the word vintage is one of those very rare English conjugated adjectives that is adjusted according to not the noun being modified, but to the owner of the object being described--thus:

 

My pen is vintage.

 

Your pen is not aging well.

 

His pen is a piece of junk.

 

This misunderstanding of English grammar can make precise definition impossible.

ron

 

More appropriately --

I want to buy that pen, but it's old and used

I want to sell that pen, it's vintage and tested.

fpn_1412827311__pg_d_104def64.gif




“Them as can do has to do for them as can’t.


And someone has to speak up for them as has no voices.”


Granny Aching

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