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Help with identifying a strange Vintage Sheaffer Pen please.


British99
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Greetings to all.

 

This is my first post on this forum, I've found it to be very helpful in identifying a few vintage pens I've recently inherited but now require more help than just viewing. 

 

I require some help with identifying an odd older Sheaffer ball pen, - I've tried my best to include as clear photos as possible, but if anyone would like anymore to help with the I.D please let me know, 

 

What I already know about the pen is:

 

It should be pre 1964 as the name is "Sheaffer's" and not "Sheaffer" as research shows me that they discontinued the S around 1964. 

 

it is not solid gold or gold filled as there are  no hallmarks that are visible only script/markings that are - "Sheaffer's. Made In The USA. and then a very strange "376" just above the "Sheaffers". 

 

Additional info; It is a push pen, not a twist pen, and it does feature the classic white dot at the top of the cap. 

 

1, What model is it?

2, What year is it (aprox?)

3, Is the 376 a factory engraving or been done post factory? it is on the cap band but the engraving plate on the barrel is blank and untouched. 

 

Any information on this would be incredibly helpful and appreciated!

 

Many thanks for reading. 

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  • joss

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Your pen is a rather rare Snorkel Triumph ballpoint made sometime during the Snorkel model run between 1952 and 1959. I can't tell you anything about the "376" on the cap band however.

 

These ballpoints are rare. Sheaffer made plastic "Clicker" ballpoints--with the same mechanism as the Triumph ballpoint--during the Snorkel period and I believe sold some "trios" consisting of the ballpoint, mechanical pencil, and a Snorkel fountain pen. The Clicker ballpoints were produced with both plastic caps (called Valiant) and stainless steel caps (Sentinel). There's a thread somewhere here in FPN either in the Sheaffer forum or a forum for ballpoints in which Clickers are discussed. Brian McQueen and I are both collectors.

 

I've posted photos of my Triumph ballpoint which was, ironically, made in England. I say ironically because you are from England and have one made in the US, while I, an American, own one made in England. FYI, mine is part of a Triumph trio made in England, consisting of the ballpoint, the mechanical pencil, and the Snorkel fountain pen. It's a rare and interesting set, so I'll post photos of it in the Snorkel photo thread when I can. 

 

I'm pretty sure Brian also has a Triumph ballpoint, but I don't know if it was made in the US or England. I suspect he'll chime in on this thread, or you can message him about it.

 

BTW, the refill shown in one of the photos is a modern replacement.

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Interesting, I did not know that these ballpoints existed. I recognize the shape of the Triumph gold filled pencil of the Snorkel era but I do not see this ballpoint pictured in any Sheaffer catalog or advertisement that I have.

Is it correct that the Triumph Snorkel with gold filled cap and barrel appears first in the 1955 catalog? If so, this ballpoint might be from the mid (rather than early) 1950s.

 

The 376 imprint is odd and seems a bit out of place.

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"3, Is the 376 a factory engraving or been done post factory? it is on the cap band but the engraving plate on the barrel is blank and untouched."

 

I just want to note that what you refer to as an "engraving plate" is often called a "cartouche." My example does not have one.

 

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Hi Joss & Rob, many thanks for the information you both provided and thank you for the photos of your own Rob, beautiful pen and some really helpful and in depth information!

 

Joss - I believe they were first introduced in 1953 as this catalog from Brian  suggests? https://drive.google.com/file/d/1BNvy5RkmFSQcith6eKG7P9rFNt9BFA0F/view

 

Rob - Thank you for the in-depth response, and the lovely photos. that is very funny that we both own opposite pens to our own nationalities lol! 

 

The 376 still baffles me, could it possibly be a prototype, sales award, or custom order? 

 

Thank you both again for helping me to get a positive ID on this pen! 

 

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3 hours ago, British99 said:

Joss - I believe they were first introduced in 1953 as this catalog from Brian  suggests? https://drive.google.com/file/d/1BNvy5RkmFSQcith6eKG7P9rFNt9BFA0F/view

 

Yes, but the only 'all metal' Sheaffer Triumph in the 1953 catalog is the Masterpiece in solid gold. The Sheaffer Triumph with gold filled cap and barrel is present in the 1955 catalog so maybe it was not available before 1955. 

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  • 1 month later...

Every example of this ballpoint I've seen always have numbers on them for some reason 

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  • 2 weeks later...

This is in fact not a Triumph ballpoint, as 3rdlakerobert suggests, though I thought it was for some time, as well.  It is actually called the Registered White Dot ballpoint, and is not associated with the Triumph Snorkel.   There is a chrome version, too!  Believe it or not, these were priced at $10 and $15.  Several models of the Snorkel fountain pen were priced below that.  

Registered White Dot.PNG

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Thank you for your input Brian! I was aware about that magazine entry, which is 1957, but I did not associate the rather vague description of The Registered White Dot with an all metal gold filled pen. Do you have pictures of the chrome version of this ballpoint?

 

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Thank you Joss and Brian for your input, It's interesting to know it was manufactured around 1957 and not earlier in the 50's as I first believed. 

 

 

I was not aware of the name being 'Registered White Dot', I am surprised they did not give it a less formal name in line with their other offerings at the time. 

 

I wonder if the 376 engraving on the cartouche was the production number, either done in-house or by the original owner wanting to give it an identity. Either way it is fascinating!  - I appreciate everyone's input in helping me find an I.D. 

 

I am unsure if I'll be keeping it as I (like many) have too many ballpoints in my collection. 

 

Either way it is a very interesting pen and it's brilliant to have a full I.D on it as well as some background on it. 

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There is also a more elaborate description of The Registered White Dot ballpoint in the Sept 1957 issue of Sheaffer's Review, which is available in the PCA library (see page 30 in this pdf from the PCA library).

According to the description, the ballpoint was hand-produced (?) and numbered at Sheaffer's Fort Madison factory. If only one pen was provided to every three dealers, this pen might be quite rare. From the statements in the text I would have expected a more glamorous registration imprint though on this special pen.

 

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9 hours ago, joss said:

Really great info and pictures, Brian! Thanks for sharing. The chrome version of this ballpoint is likely really rare.

This is the only chrome one I have seen, for what that’s worth.

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