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Box Labeled Parker 51 -- Super 21


teryg93

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I've seen a couple of pens on ebay in a box labeled "Parker "51" -- Super "21". They're advertised as 21s. Does anyone know if that's what's likely to be in the box?

 

Thanks!

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Got a link? It is generally easy to tell a 51 from a 21.

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Well, it's definitely a cap for a 21....

Unfortunately, there aren't good photos of the sac sleeve from all sides.

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."

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Well, it's definitely a cap for a 21....

Unfortunately, there aren't good photos of the sac sleeve from all sides.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

Thanks. I'm going to do more research so I can learn to tell them apart myself!

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The nib stretches beyond the hood like the two (that's all...) Super 21's I have had. If you bid, assume it's a 21 or Super 21 and bid accordingly.

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Super 21

San Francisco International Pen Show - The next “Funnest Pen Show” is on schedule for August 23-24-25, 2024.  Watch the show website for registration details. 
 

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The last generation of the Super 21s...the clutch ring sometimes confuses as it looks identical to those on the 51s, but Parker did use it for the 21s

Thomas
Baton Rouge, LA
(tbickiii)

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It is worth noting it is the instruction set that is shown, the box is generic and doesn't specify a model.

San Francisco International Pen Show - The next “Funnest Pen Show” is on schedule for August 23-24-25, 2024.  Watch the show website for registration details. 
 

My PM box is usually full. Just email me: my last name at the google mail address.

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So, I've never been able to pin down the differences between a 21, a Super 21, and a 51 Special. I have a regular 21 and a 51 Special, and they both have the hoop-style filler (as opposed to on a 51 Aerometric). I *think* I'm right in saying that 51 Specials used the same material (i.e., Lucite) for the barrels, but have an Octanium nib like on the 21s. But I have never been able to get anyone to definitively pin down where the Super 21s fit in the spectrum between a "regular" 21 and a "regular" 51 Aero. I'm including the 41 in that spectrum, BTW -- I know that that they were marketed as a lady's pen, and as an intermediate between the student grade 21 and and top of the line 51s, but didn't sell particularly well since they used the same grade of plastic for the barrel as the 21s.

I actually have at least one of all of the aforementioned pens -- except for a Super 21....

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."

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So, Looking at the 'Super 21' cap, and the '21' was around the other side, unseen, there is no chrome band at the bottom edge of the cap, as on a '51' ?

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So, Looking at the 'Super 21' cap, and the '21' was around the other side, unseen, there is no chrome band at the bottom edge of the cap, as on a '51' ?

Later 51s (late 1960s) don't seem to have that band you mention.

"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

 

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So, I've never been able to pin down the differences between a 21, a Super 21, and a 51 Special. I have a regular 21 and a 51 Special, and they both have the hoop-style filler (as opposed to on a 51 Aerometric). I *think* I'm right in saying that 51 Specials used the same material (i.e., Lucite) for the barrels, but have an Octanium nib like on the 21s. But I have never been able to get anyone to definitively pin down where the Super 21s fit in the spectrum between a "regular" 21 and a "regular" 51 Aero. I'm including the 41 in that spectrum, BTW -- I know that that they were marketed as a lady's pen, and as an intermediate between the student grade 21 and and top of the line 51s, but didn't sell particularly well since they used the same grade of plastic for the barrel as the 21s.

I actually have at least one of all of the aforementioned pens -- except for a Super 21....

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

Haven't you pretty well described where the Super 21 fits? 21 plastic, 21 cap with arrow clip, "PARKER" on the hoop filler, Octanium nib. I just looked at the NOS 21 Super here in my basement. Inside I have no idea what kind of collector is in the 21 Super. I have never had any reason to take a Super 21 apart.

Edited by pajaro

"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

 

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Haven't you pretty well described where the Super 21 fits? 21 plastic, 21 cap with arrow clip, "PARKER" on the hoop filler, Octanium nib. I just looked at the NOS 21 Super here in my basement. Inside I have no idea what kind of collector is in the 21 Super. I have never had any reason to take a Super 21 apart.

 

Well, as far as I've been able to determine, there's a difference in the style of clip between a regular 21, a 41 and a Super 21.... Is there more than that?

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."

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Well, as far as I've been able to determine, there's a difference in the style of clip between a regular 21, a 41 and a Super 21.... Is there more than that?

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

The clips of 21 and Super 21 are very different. I haven't had a 41 for several years, and can't compare it to the Super 21. The regular 21 doesn't have an arrow clip. I would not be surprised if there were a difference in the arrow clip of the 41 and Super 21.

"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

 

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Well, as far as I've been able to determine, there's a difference in the style of clip between a regular 21, a 41 and a Super 21.... Is there more than that?

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

 

A clip is a clip, but when the pen meets the paper, the value in a Super 21 is the tubular nib, which makes it much more a member of the 51 family than a standard 21, which has a more conventional nib under the hood. It's been mentioned that some P51 collectors happily carry a Super 21 as their everyday writer/pocket pen.

 

 

So, when trying to identify a 21, that's where you should start. In the example posting from the beginning of this thread, picture #3 is a good shot of the underside of the nib. Notice that the exposed end of the feed is flat and has a nice oval "O"-shape, which means the nib is tubular, similar to a P51 or P61. The various standard 21 models will have a more round ended "D"-shaped profile. The cutout in the hood is also smaller in a Super, especially compared to the early standard 21s.
Other differences to help differentiate a standard from a Super 21:
- As mentioned in postings above, the clip should be a flattened-fletch arrow (if the cap is original/correct).
- If the underside of the nib isn't shown in an online photo, you can look closely at a side view of the pen. That flat, oval end of the Super feed is parallel to the hood cutout and should be flush or slightly recessed from the hood, so nothing "sticks out" on a side view. Standard 21s have feeds that often show as a a rounded bulge coming out of the front of the hood on a side view.
- If the inscription on the filler says "PARKER 21" then it is a standard, but if it reads simply "PARKER" then you may be looking at a Super.
- The threads at the barrel joint are different. Look at the width of the threaded plastic area as compared to the clutch ring. If the threads are only about as wide as the ring, it's likely a standard 21. The threaded section on a Super is nearly twice as wide as the ring. After you look at a few of these it's an easy-to-spot difference.
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Just to add to the confusion, there's two different Super 21 clips. The earlier one looks like the the sort the earliest 21s used, with added hints of arrow-ness:

fpn_1470410668__1956s21.jpg

 

The later ones are essentially the same as the 45's, just held down with a different jewel:

fpn_1470410833__1960s21.jpg

 

 

Another difference between Super and Not is that Parker actually acknowledged, in a covert way, that the plastic on the Not-Supers was unreliable; the advertising made much of the NEW X100 plastic!!! that the Super was made of. Not quite as good as the Lucite of the 51 (Special or otherwise), perhaps, but certainly less disappointing. I've actually enjoyed the writing characteristics of the Not-Super 21; the tubular point was certainly part of a more reliable overall package, but I don't think there was a marked superiority in the on-paper feel. You just spend less time cringing in anticipation of the hood crumbing in your fingers.

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It's been mentioned that some P51 collectors happily carry a Super 21 as their everyday writer/pocket pen.

 

Who? I may need their cards....

San Francisco International Pen Show - The next “Funnest Pen Show” is on schedule for August 23-24-25, 2024.  Watch the show website for registration details. 
 

My PM box is usually full. Just email me: my last name at the google mail address.

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