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Hi everyone!

 

I have just been told by my cousin that I am going to be receiving a fountain pen from inheritance. The pen is a Swan 4660.

 

My question is, what is a respectable price for a Swan 4660 that is near mint/mint possibly unused? I have NO intention of selling, and am not interested in the ridiculous amounts things go for on ebay - I'm simply wondering what a pen such as this is worth approximately given no unrealistic bidding etc?

 

To me it is priceless and may or may not be used by me ever, I'm scared to use something possibly new old stock.

 

While we're at it, what would a used but excellent condition one be worth being reasonable with pricing?

 

 

Sorry that this is a weird question, I'd just rather know if I should protect this pen not only for personal reasons, but also monetary reasons.

 

Thank you all! If I get the pen soon, I will upload photos!

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The word "mint" referring to items that are perhaps 70 years old is used far too often in my opinion.

 

If your pen is unused and "mint" it will be in its box., with its papers, and may well have a paper band around it indicating the price for which it sold; it would be in full working order. That would be mint, in otherwords as though it came form the shop yesterday. If the pen has not been used for a number of years it will need a new sac and therefore will not be in working order.

 

However even if it is not working, a 4660 in that condition would be rare indeed and worth most likely several hundred pounds. If the nib is an Eternal it will be worth a bit less. If the nib is truly flexible this would enhance the value somewhat.

 

Cob

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


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  • 7 months later...

Cob wrote re the Swan 4660: "If the nib is an Eternal it will be worth a bit less"

 

Thanks for this information but am curious why it is so?

 

I ask as a Swan 'Torpedo' neophyte who owns two Swan "4660" pens... One pen is shorter in the barrel by approx. 0.6cm, has a No.6 'Eternal' nib and a 4660 imprint at the knob end. The other pen, with the longer barrel, has no 'Eternal' nib imprint on its No.6 nib and the fat, long barrel lacks any Model No. imprint at any place.

 

Purely from my own (limited) experience using and gazing at these two awesome pens, I wondered if perhaps 'Eternal' signified a deliberately stiff nib, specifically for use when creating carbon copies, in the same way the Conway Stewart No.60 was often fitted with a stiff 'Manifold' imprint nib for the same purpose?

 

Info re any of those differences or variants in the '4660' will be certainly appreciated :-)

 

Mike

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From what you say I suspect that the two models, whilst both being leverless, will have different filling systems: one will have the older-type paddle system whilst the other will ahve the later pressure bar type introduced I think in 1951.

 

The reference to the Eternal nib relates to the fact that Eternals are "nails" and most people today do not want them. Elsewhere in this forum it has been stated that there are flexible Eternals around. I have never come across.one.

 

Cob

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


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Nibs vary from totally rigid to soft and flexible. Many high end pens have nibs with lot of gold, that are thick and very rigid, such as most Sheaffer Lifetime nibs, and most large Parker Duofolds. They write well and look great. Swan Eternal nibs are like these.

 

However, most current fans of Mabie Todd pens prefer the springy nibs, and love the outright flexible ones. Swan Eternal nibs are very very very rarely anything but totally rigid (I agree with Cob - and have never seen a soft one, but people insist that they exist).

 

So in the current market, Eternal nibs fetch a lower price.

 

If you like the thick large gold nib, take advantage of it! They still write well.

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Nibs vary from totally rigid to soft and flexible...high end pens have nibs with lots of gold, that are thick and very rigid...in the current market Eternal nibs fetch a lower price.

From what you say I suspect that the two models, whilst both leverless, will have different filling systems: one will have the older-type paddle system whilst the other will have the later pressure bar type introduced, I think in 1951...Eternals are "nails" and most people today do not want them...

Cob

 

Thanks to you both for the information that: Swan's No.6 nib, with 'Eternal' imprint, is frequently of nail-like character!

 

Regarding the pen without any 4660 model imprint (shown on right-hand side of attached image) and why it has a longer barrel:

 

Can I conclude from Cob's reply that the long barrel length resulted from a change in leverless filler design, for a modified 'leverless' filler mechanism?

 

Can the date of change of paddle/ filler bar assembly help to date a Swan's probable year of manufacture?

 

Frompost-62252-0-98507300-1517729453_thumb.jpg

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I have here a No 4 pressure bar leverless barrel that I have just measured. From the tip of the filler knob to the end of the barrel threads, it measures 83.3mm. N.B. this barrel is un-numbered. The No 6 pens may have been longer - i am not sure; they were certainly fatter. Mabie Todd were a bit hit-and-miss with numbering their pens; this has been discussed at length elsewhere.

 

The pressure bar system was introduced in 1951. Dating Swans eactly is virtually impossible - certain generalisations may be made: for example early paddle leverless pens had the paddle held in place by a screw this probably lasted only a couple of years - say to 1936. Since paddle leverlesses were made from 1933 to 1950 or so, otherwise your guess is as good as mine. The "torpedo" shape appeared in 1947 so that narrows it down somewhat.

 

The only Swan I know of that can be dated exactly is the New York split lever pen; these were made only in 1919!

 

Cob

Edited by Cob

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


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  • 1 year later...

I am glad to see this thread. I have what I had figured to be a 4660( but no model number imprint anywhere) with no nib or bar inside but in stunning physical condition externally. I finally found a reasonably priced #6 nib and it will arrive in a few days. Appearance wise it seems like it might be flexy and in the ef-f range. But it IS an Eternal.

I assume this one takes the button filler type bar? If so, do any of you know which size?

Edited by RayCornett
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Have you checked inside the barrel for a paddle half way up it? they were far more common than the button bar pen

Of course. That's how I knew it had no bar inside :)

I recently read somewhere that post war leverless took button filler bars. This is definitely post war according to the imprint.

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  • 7 months later...

Ok, so the #6 I got late last year turned out to be WAY too big for what I thought was a 4660. I found a cheaply priced #2 which I will try. If it's too small I guess i'll try a 4. lol

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