Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, XF Semi-Flex

(Sold) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Emerald Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XF Semi-Flex nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). I use only very gentle restoration techniques and use only the highest-quality replacement materials and specialist tools. The pen measures slightly over 5" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, uncapped

In the late 1930s and throughout the 1940s, the pen industry underwent a major shift toward sturdy, dependable, always-ready, consistent, self-filling pens that were supposed to perform equally well regardless of one's ink, writing technique, paper, air pressure and temperature, and other, sometimes extreme, conditions. Each major brand offered a lifetime warranty on their flagship models, and made sure their pens would not require servicing often.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

In terms of nib manufacturing, there was a definite transition toward less flexible, larger, thicker nibs with plenty of tipping material, so that they would comply with the dominant handwriting style of the era. For most people, including office professionals, Ornamental Penmanship was quickly becoming less practical and was gradually phased out in favor of the more rapid and legible business cursive, such as the Palmer Method. Flexible nibs were still available as special-order items, but the vast majority of gold nibs made at the time were semi-flexible or firm.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, nib close-up

Parker's nib design focused on improving the gold point's ability to absorb vibrations caused by dragging the tip across the surface of the paper. Such vibrations are often perceived as unpleasant, and nib makers went to great lengths to minimize them. The Vacumatic nib was a great example of this new type of design. The nib has variable thickness (strategically distributed), which further improves its "compliance," its ability to seamlessly conform to the writer's movement, responding to even the slightest variation in pressure, direction, and rapidity, while soaking up microscopic paper bumps with ease. This particular nib lays down a line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper) and spreads easily to about 0.7 mm with slight increase in writing pressure. This is not a fully flexible nib, so please do not try to push it beyond its limit, but it can be used rather effectively to instantly add character to your handwriting.

The pen is in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects. The Emerald celluloid has incredible depth, vibrancy, and still very good barrel transparency. The gold filled trim is in equally good shape, and the imprint is strong. The filling mechanism holds up to 1.8 ml of ink.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, F, Semi-Flex

(Sold) This is a 1943 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Azure Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold Fine Semi-Flex nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth. This is a typical specimen of the model, measuring a little over 5" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, F, Semi-Flex

I am often asked for advice regarding vintage fountain pens. One of the most frequently asked questions is what pen do I recommend as a "safe bet," a pen that can easily be considered a top-tier pen, yet one that sells for a lot less than a modern pen with comparable features and performance. Those of you who follow me on Instagram probably know how much I love Sheaffer pens, but, to be honest, it is the wartime Parker Vacumatic Major that makes the best premium vintage pen for beginners and advanced collectors alike.

The Major is a larger pen in Parker's line-up, but it does appear somewhat smaller, compared to most modern luxury pens. Still, it has superb ergonomics, posts extremely well, and feels very comfortable, regardless of your grip. The material is gorgeous, particularly in Azure! The barrel has very nice transparency, which allows you to gauge your remaining ink level with ease. Speaking of ink, the Vacumatic holds a lot of it, up to 1.7 ml (with some variation across models), and comes equipped with one of the most ingenious and reliable filling mechanisms ever made.

With all that being said, the Vacumatic really excels as a writing instrument. It comes with a fantastic 14k gold nib, one that writes at the lightest touch, and when pressed harder, rewards you with a hint of line variation, instantly adding character to your handwriting. It's precise and yet it has excellent performance latitude, laying down a satisfying line in virtually all directions, with luscious long curves and steadfast rapid upstrokes. A fantastic tool with which to take your handwriting to the next level.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, F, Semi-Flex, capped

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XXF

(Sold) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker 51 Vacumatic fountain pen in Blue Cedar, with a stainless steel cap, gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XXF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). This is a full-size pen, measuring about 5.3" capped (135 mm).

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XXF, uncapped

The Parker 51 is not only "the world's most wanted pen," but it is also, in my opinion, a writer's pen, a pen for people who love to write. No, it's not made of fancy, colorful acrylic; no, it's not finished in Maki-e; no, it's not adorned with a snowflake. However, it's a beautifully designed, very well-made, highly comfortable, stylish writing machine. A pen that accommodates a variety of grips, angles, and rotation. With a dependable slip cap, ready to deploy, ready to write, this is one of the most reliable writing instruments that I have ever tried. Parker's solution to the age-old problem of fluid expansion and contraction under different conditions, is perhaps the most foolproof, resulting in a pen that has silky-smooth, consistent flow of ink, a pen that glides across the page, but without making a messy line. A crisp and precise writer, just when you need it the most.

This particular pen is in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects. The filling mechanism works efficiently and holds a lot of ink (up to 1.8 ml). The cap is in equally great shape, as is the gold-filled trim. The imprint is strong. Quite honestly, this is a gorgeous specimen of this iconic pen. The Blue Diamond indicates the pen's extreme durability, and you can be sure that this pen will give you years of dependable service. A true XXF writer, you'd be hard-pressed to find an equally great factory nib that writes so fine so well today.

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XXF, posted

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF Semi-Flex

(On hold) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Azure Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XF Semi-Flex nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth. This is a full-size pen, measuring a little over 5" capped and 0.48" in diameter, very typical of this model.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, uncapped

It's very interesting that a lot of new fountain pen enthusiasts are interested in improving their handwriting, and, in particular, in learning (or re-learning) cursive. There's been a lot of discussion lately about the value of learning cursive, and, often, the fountain pen is thought of as the ideal tool with which to learn cursive. I am not sure if the fountain pen is the answer, but I do believe it offers a combination of features that can be extremely helpful in improving one's handwriting.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, nib profile

The Parker Vacumatic I'm offering today is an excellent penmanship improvement tool. It is a full-size pen (though somewhat smaller than most modern luxury pens), perfectly balanced, with a pleasant tactile sensation, a high-capacity filling mechanism, and an XF semi-flexible nib. The nib is tuned to write at the lightest touch, producing a line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper), opening up to about 0.7 mm, with relative ease. However, this nib is not meant to be flexed a lot, but, rather, it's excels at adding a touch of character, a hint of line variation to your handwriting.

The nib comes with ample tipping material, of perfect geometry and alignment, giving you consistency, virtually regardless of the direction or rapidity of your strokes. Admittedly, the nib produces a more graceful line with rapid strokes, but you can also use it effectively for slow, methodical practice.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, capped

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XF

(Sold) lThis is a 1943 Blue Diamond, full-size Parker 51 Vacumatic in Blue Cedar, with a 14k gold-filled cap, and a 14k gold XF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth.

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XF, uncapped, with the blind cap removed

Today, most of us use fountain pens for fun, with fancy ink and paper. It's interesting how our idea of performance has evolved over time. Free from work-related constraints of form, we tend to prefer pens that write fat, juicy lines that bring out the depth, saturation, shading, and sheen in our favorite inks. However, you might be surprised to know that, for decades, pen companies, including Parker, worked on making ink flow more controlled, more restrained. In fact, one of Parker's advertising slogans, "Writes dry with wet ink," was used to further emphasize the fact that their pens could be used safely and reliably on even the most important office papers, personal journals, and other "mission critical" work. if you are among the continuously growing number of people who use fountain pens for serious work, you might find this 51 of interest.

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XF, nib profile

The Parker 51 Vacumatic I'm offering today is a superb example of the 1940s writing performance standards. It comes vested with a fantastic XF nib, which lays down a confident, consistent, resolute line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper). Ink flow is incredibly well-controlled, providing a monoline that you can depend on for all of your important work. Whether it's for professional or personal purposes, the 51 will not let you down, never skipping, starving for ink, or skidding out of control. The nib feels smooth and soft, while being very forgiving of both angle and rotation. The nib is tuned to write at the lightest pressure, but it will take a heavy hand just as easily.

This is a gorgeous-looking pen! With a rare, 14k gold-filled cap with an interesting alternating Guilloché pattern (two straight and two "scalloped" lines). The pen is free from scratches or blemishes, with only the slightest surface wear present (difficult to see with the naked eye). The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape, the imprint is strong.

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Blue Cedar, XF, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major "Long" Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F, Semi-Flex

(On Hold) This is a 1943 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major "Long" in Golden Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold two-tone, Fine, Semi-Flex nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). This is a full-size pen, longer than most of the later Major models, measuring about 5.3" capped and 0.48" in diameter. 

Parker Vacumatic Major "Long" Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F, Semi-Flex, uncapped

When it comes to flex, the conventional wisdom is that the best performance is to be found among vintage pens, particularly those that have not been abused. Finding such a pen "in the wild" is becoming more and more difficult, and, as a result, the prices of restored vintage pens with flex nibs have gone up substantially over the past few years. There's a lot of variability among vintage flex pens, even across the same model, and each pen is going to have its own unique feel and performance characteristics. Quantifying flexibility is, therefore, rather difficult. I always tend to to cautious and conservative in my assessments of flex, paying special attention to a nib's responsiveness, rather than total tines spread.

Parker Vacumatic Major "Long" Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F, Semi-Flex, nib profile

What you want in a quality flex pen is its ability to respond to your hand's subtle changes in writing pressure, direction, and speed. You want to be able to create a subtle transition between a hairline and swell, as that is the very foundation of Ornamental Penmanship and most other similar styles. The pen I'm offering today would be an excellent addition to a calligrapher's tool box. A pen that doesn't have a huge range, but it does have enough of it to be a superb instrument with which to create awesome calligraphy. The nib writes a Fine line of about 0.4 mm (on my paper), and opens up easily to at least a BB. The nib is smooth, soft, and feels as though it has a shock absorbing mechanism built into it. It offers you a comfortable, yet agile, ride across the paper, with that highly coveted gliding sensation. It will allow you to bring out the beauty, shading, and sheen of your favorite inks, thanks to its wet flow under pressure. And, it's the more rare two-tone variant to boot!

The pen is in excellent condition. Being the "Long" model, it should feel comfortable in most people's hands, with a high-capacity filing mechanism, and the timeless, gorgeous Golden Pearl celluloid, this pen is sure to put a smile on your face. The material has such depth, vibrancy, as if it's alive, with hundreds of tones of brown, gold, and yellow. The transparency is a bit ambered, but you can still see your ink inside the barrel with ease.

Parker Vacumatic Major "Long" Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F, Semi-Flex, capped

Parker "Striped" Duofold Senior Fountain Pen, Vacumatic, Green & Gold, XF

(On hold) This is a 1943 Blue Diamond Parker "Striped" Duofold Senior Fountain Pen, a Vacumatic filler, in Green & Gold celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XXF nib. This was a Parker flagship model, a large pen, measuring 5.3" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker "Striped" Duofold Senior Fountain Pen, Vacumatic, Green & Gold, XF, uncapped

Parker's Duofold has been the flagship model for decades, a pen that embodies elegance, class, beauty, and all-day writing comfort. A supremely beautiful, luxurious-looking pen, it resembles a Medieval stained-glass window, a true work of art. It's also a pen with superb ergonomics, with a streamlined, graceful shape, undisturbed by a filling contraption, and a very comfortable, slightly tapered section. The pen should be suitable for the vast majority of users, including those with large hands.

Parker "Striped" Duofold Senior Fountain Pen, Vacumatic, Green & Gold, XF, nib profile

I could go on at length about the amazingly rich, vibrant, semi-transparent celluloid, and the high-capacity, efficient filling mechanism, but, truly, the star of the show is the 14k gold nib. Duofold nibs are renowned for their reliable performance, day in, day out, on all kinds of paper, with all kinds of ink, able to accommodate a broad variety of writing techniques, grips, degrees of writing pressure, etc. The nib was engineered to take advantage of the proprietary gold alloy, with its unique elasticity and vibration-dampening properties. The shape,continuously varied in thickness, further enhances these properties, while the tipping material adds a measure of reliability. Parker's engineering prowess allows the Janesville company to create a writing surface both smooth and "grippy," a nib tuned to write at the lightest touch, yet taking increased pressure in stride. This nib lays down a consistent XF line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper).

Parker "Striped" Duofold Senior Fountain Pen, Vacumatic, Green & Gold, XF, nib close-up

If you have been looking for a beautiful pen that writes the most enjoyable, dependable business cursive, look no further. If you are a lover of modern Japanese nibs, you're in for a real treat. And if you've been trying to take your penmanship to the next level, this pen might be just what your handwriting needs.

Parker "Striped" Duofold Senior Fountain Pen, Vacumatic, Green & Gold, XF, capped

The pen is in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects, and is priced at $199. Please, contact me if you're interested in ordering it, and I will email you a PayPal invoice. Shipping fees are listed on this page. Thanks!

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XF

(Sold)  a 14k gold XF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth. The pen measures around 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XF, uncapped

Yesterday, I saw an amazing post on Instagram showing a trio of OMAS Arco celluloid pens, and it reminded me that it must be the most beautiful pen material ever made. My next thought was, how about the 1940s Parker Vacumatic? Quite frankly, the Golden Pearl celluloid must be at least in the same conversation as the Arco, quite possibly a runner-up. Wouldn't you agree?

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XF, nib profile

The celluloid exudes timeless beauty. The Vac has been around for decades, yet it manages to look fresh and exciting, while other classic designs have a somewhat more dated appearance. The shimmering, gleaming material explodes in a myriad of colors and patterns, most of which  unique to each individual pen. The stacking of the different layers of celluloid resulted in creating a semi-transparent barrel, which allows you to watch your pen fill (awesome!) and gauge remaining ink level with ease. It's such an ingenious design, and yet it remains unmatched by any modern acrylic, in my opinion. The pen really does make you smile, as if emanating warmth, pleasantness. The rich, vibrant browns and yellows certainly add to that perception, as does the unique tactile sensation that only vintage celluloid has.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XF, nib close-up

Yes, the material is gorgeous, but the pen is also a top performer. The 14k nib, thanks to its ingenious design and manufacturing process, is a true expert at reducing paper vibrations and, thus, giving its owner a resolute, forthright, yet entirely cushioned ride. It's a rare nib that is made to be firm, yet feels soft. I tuned it to write at the lightest touch, as required by Parker, but it will also take increased pressure in stride, giving you more generous flow and a hint of line variation. The nib just wants to go, as if to attack the paper; it wants you to write more, making the most beautiful strokes, down, up, and across, including glorious curves (about 0.4 mm on my paper). It's a pen that wants to make you push yourself that much harder, write that much longer. It's such an exciting, wonderful thing to just pick it up, ink it up, and put it to paper. The reward is instantaneous.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XF, material close-up

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XF, capped

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Cordovan Brown, F

(Sold) This is a 1947 full-size Blue Diamond Parker 51 Vacumatic in Cordovan Brown, with a two-tone stainless steel cap, gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, nib tuning, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand).

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Cordovan Brown, F, with the cap and blind cap removed

Having such a huge variety of awesome fountain pens available today (both vintage and modern), it's becoming more and more difficult to put together one's "Top Five" lists of favorites. However, no matter how I shuffle my "Top Five," the Parker 51 Vacumatic is always there, and close to the very top. Apparently, I am not crazy, as the "51" has been "the world's most wanted pen."

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Cordovan Brown, F, nib profile

To me, what makes the "51" a favorite is its writing performance. Period. Yes, you can argue that it has supreme ergonomics (no step, no threads, a slight taper), and that it comes with a sophisticated, high-capacity filling mechanism, but, at the end of the day, when the rubber meets the road (insert your favorite cliche), and the pen has to perform consistently, at the highest level, regardless of ink, paper, writing technique, the "51" never lets me down. It writes where most other pens refuse to. It produces the most splendid, silky smooth monoline that other pens are jealous of. It is firm, without feeling harsh. It has that awesome, resolute willingness to deliver ink to paper, without fuss, without hesitation. 

The pen is in fantastic condition, without any flaws or defects. The material is vibrant, with a deep, rich color, and a pleasant glossy finish. The cap and gold-filled clip are in equally great shape. Truly, a fantastic specimen, and, interestingly, the "last year" model of the Blue Diamond lifetime warranty. The following year, Parker began a transition toward the new variant of the "51," the Aerometric.

Parker 51 Vacumatic Fountain Pen, Cordovan Brown, F, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, F

(Sold) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Emerald Pearl celluloid, with a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). This is a full-size pen, measuring around 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, F, uncapped

Most fountain pen enthusiasts, even those who do not currently own a vintage pen, would agree that the Parker Vacumatic is utterly beautiful. Most people are also aware of its ingenious, high-capacity filling mechanism. However, fewer people are aware of the pen's incredible writing performance. Quite simply, the Vacumatic is one of the best writers ever made. There, I said it.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, F, nib profile

What is it exactly that makes the Vacumatic such an awesome performer? As with most things, it's a combination of factors, including its superb ergonomics, the ink delivery system, and, of course, the nib. Made of 14k gold, the nib might look like modern nibs by the likes of Pelikan, Montblanc, Bock, etc., but the similarities are superficial only. The nib has a continuously varying thickness, which combined with the properties of the alloy (developed by annealing, tempering, and hammering) gives the nib incredible elasticity and vibration dampening ability.

As the nib moves across the surface of the paper, it begins to vibrate. These vibrations, let's call them "paper buzz," are experienced as "roughness" or "toothiness." Modern pen makers try to minimize these unwanted sensations by polishing the writing surface (the tipping material) to an extreme degree. While that might give the user a momentary sensation of smoothness, it also compromises the nib's writing ability, reducing friction and impeding capillary flow. Parker's solution to the "paper buzz" problem was radically different, and it involved engineering a vibration dampening mechanism into the nib, but, crucially, without overpolishing the writing surface. The result is a nib that writes consistently at the lightest touch, feels smooth, including rapid upstrokes and cross-strokes, and will give you a hint of line variation if called upon to do so. It's really is a genius piece of writing technology! 

The pen's in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects, with gorgeous, gleaming celluloid of incredible depth and vibrancy. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. A beautiful specimen! 

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Emerald Pearl, F, capped

Parker "Striped" Duofold Ingenue Fountain Pen, Blue Pearl, F

(Sold) This is a 1940s Blue Diamond Parker "Striped" Duofold Ingenue Fountain Pen with a Vacumatic filling mechanism, in Blue Pearl celluloid, with a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with soft cloth. The pen measures 4.8" capped and 0.43" in diameter.

Parker "Striped" Duofold Ingenue Fountain Pen, Blue Pearl, F, uncapped

Which modern fountain pen would you call "cute?" There are lots of plain pens, elegant pens, classy pens, luxurious pens, beautiful pens, but cute?  I am sure you all can think of a lot of cute pens, but I'm finding the question difficult and a Google search isn't helping, either. However, if I am allowed to include vintage pens, it would have to be the Parker "Striped" Duofold Ingenue. 

Parker "Striped" Duofold Ingenue Fountain Pen, Blue Pearl, F, nib profile

Marketed towards women, the flagship Ingenue is a dainty pen that looks like a piece of jewelry rather than a writing instrument. Parker claimed that, in various opinion polls, "Lead and other pen," which was particularly true of the Duofold line. The gorgeous celluloid explodes in a rainbow of colors, vibrant and bright, resembling a Medieval stained glass window, including barrel transparency. The stylish gold-filled trim offers a bit of luxury, class, while adding some warmth to the dominant cooler tones of the Blue Pearl celluloid.

Today, marketing a "lady" pen would be risky, and calling it "Ingenue" might even be perceived as offensive, yet this pen is clearly made for a smaller hand. I can think of many scenarios where having this pen would be awesome, ranging from formal business meetings to solitary long writing sessions at your favorite coffee shop. And, with the holidays approaching, it would make a fantastic gift to usher a friend or family member into the exciting world of fountain pens. But most of all, this is one of the cutest pens I've ever seen, and that means a lot to me! How can you NOT be tempted add it to your collection?

The pen writes a consistent line of about 0.4 mm, and it most likely sold as a Fine. The 1940s Duofold nibs are not the most exciting gold points ever made, but they are responsive, reliable, almost business-like. This particular nib is no exception. It writes at the lightest pressure, but will take a heavy hand in stride, dampening paper vibrations with ease and providing that highly coveted gliding sensation as it moves across the paper.

The pen is in great shape! There are no defects or flaws. The material is beautiful, as is the gold-filled trim. The imprint is a bit faded, but visible clearly. The filling mechanism works easily, efficiently, and holds a lot of ink. You should be able to use most conventional inks currently available, just remember never to let ink dry up inside the pen. If you're going to put the pen away for a few weeks, just flush it with water a couple of times.

Parker "Striped" Duofold Ingenue Fountain Pen, Blue Pearl, F, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF

(Sold) This is a 1942 Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen is Azure Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth. The pen measures about 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF, uncapped

The year 1942 was pivotal for the U.S. fountain pen industry. As the country entered the war, the pen companies were faced with significant difficulties, including severe material and labor shortages, and yet, both Parker and Sheaffer, were able not only to withstand the crisis, but also found a way to flourish, bringing us such awesome writing instruments as the Sheaffer Triumph and the Parker Vacumatic.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment.

The pen I'm offering today was made during the first year of Parker's shift toward the new "plastic" variant of the venerable vacuum filling mechanism, along a few minor design changes. The pen is in fantastic condition, without any flaws or defects, with gorgeous, vibrant celluloid, excellent barrel transparency (the warm tones you see in the photos), and excellent gold-filled trim. Quite simply, a fantastic pen! With the holiday season fast approaching, this would be a superb gift for a family member, a friend, or even yourself. 

The star of the show is the 14k gold nib. It's ground to write an XF line (about 0.3 mm on my paper) that is confident, self-assured, brimming with optimism. It's the kind of line that brings a smile to your face every time you write. You see the ink being deposited on the page in a perfect monoline, with a light touch, and a hint of line variation, if you press harder. A fantastically responsive nib, it will conform to your handwriting style, following your rapid strokes without question or hesitation. The nib has a great ability to dampen paper vibrations, which gives you that most coveted sensation of smoothness, yet without disconnecting you from the page, your writing, and your thoughts. The nib's genius is, partly, in its varying material thickness, to further optimize performance. It was made in a painstaking process, now mostly lost to us, in which writing performance was the absolute priority. If you're a fan of Japanese gold nibs, you're going to love this Vac, quite possibly wanting to add more than one to your collection.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen Azure Pearl, XF

(Sold) This is a 1944 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Azure Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pen measures about 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen Azure Pearl, XF, uncapped

If you have been in the fountain pen hobby for a few years, you, do doubt, have acquired a few awesome pens, such as a Lamy Safari, TWSBI Diamond 580, Pilot Custom 74, Platinum #3776, etc. Now, you're probably wondering if you should upgrade to a truly spectacular pen, such as an Aurora Optima, Pelikan M800, Montblanc LeGrand, etc. You're probably wanting to experience that superb feel in the hand, that amazing writing experience that takes your breath away, and, of course, you want a pen that's utterly beautiful. So what's stopping you? I think for most of us, it is the price. The cost of owning a spectacular "luxury" fountain pen is prohibitively high. If only you could be sure that the pen will, indeed, knock your socks off, that it will write perfectly out-of-the-box. You've probably read mixed reviews, and you're just not wanting to take the chance. Some people prefer to buy from a nib meister, who tunes each pen before sending it out, but that, typically adds extra cost. May I offer you an alternative, a restored, beautiful Parker Vacumatic that has been tuned, adjusted, thoroughly tested, and is guaranteed to write as well as Parker intended.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen Azure Pearl, XF, nib close-up

The phrase I wrote comes from a Parker Vacumatic advertisement, and, I hope you agree, it's not difficult to imagine how otherworldly the Vac must have seemed to prospective Parker customers. With such a graceful, handsome, gorgeous design, a superb, partially transparent Azure Pearl celluloid, the high-capacity advanced filling mechanism, and the writing performance to match, this was, and continues to be, an unimaginably amazing writing instrument. And yet, it's real, can be enjoyed today, and is available for a lot less than a modern Italian or German top-tier pen.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen Azure Pearl, XF, nib profile, showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

The pen writes a super confident, consistent XF line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper) with a light touch. It writes excellent rapid strokes in virtually all directions without ever feeling toothy or catching the paper. It's incredibly effective as a shock absorbing mechanism, so that your writing experience feels like a cushioned ride in a luxury sedan, yet without being disconnected from the paper. It's a sensation that has to be experienced to understand. It's just such a fantastic writer. And if you decide to push it harder, it will respond with a hint of line variation, giving you that awesome, joyful feeling and adding character to your handwriting.

Cosmetically, the pen is simply beautiful, without any flaws or defects. The material has such depth, such vibrancy, such chatoyancy. It shimmers, as if alive, yet it has retained quite a bit of transparency so it also fulfills a utilitarian purpose,  allowing you to gauge remaining ink level with ease.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen Azure Pearl, XF, capped

The pen is priced at $189. Please, contact me if you're interested in ordering it. Shipping fees are listed on this page. Thanks!

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XXF

(Sold) This is a 1944 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major in Golden Pearl celluloid, gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XXF (needlepoint) nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pen measures about 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XXF, uncapped, with the blind cap off

The quote I wrote comes from a Parker wartime advertisement, showing a mother with a daughter, looking  at a photograph of their husband/father in a U.S. Army officer's uniform. Today, such an ad would probably face a lot of criticism, but, regardless, one must appreciate the fact that the Vacumatic was designed to be a daily "workhorse" kind of pen to be used in all kinds of environments, including out in the field, at sea, and in the air, and it proved to be a reliable tool for tens of thousands of American servicemen.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XXF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

What makes the Vacumatic such a good daily writer? Bearing the Blue Diamond lifetime warranty, the pen was designed from ground up to be a tough, dependable writing instrument. I've restored countless Vacs, and I rarely come across any cracks or material malformations. The celluloid of which the pens were made, is of the highest quality, stable, suitable for machining, resilient against environmental challenges, and, most importantly, drop-dead gorgeous. The filling mechanism, despite having some plastic parts, is equally dependable as the pen's body. It's an ingenious mechanism, and it has definitely stood the test of time. I must point out, though, that the pen is meant for heavy daily use, rather than for frequent ink changes and sporadic, quick note type of scenarios. Finally, the 14k gold nib. Though it's not as huge and thick as its competition (e.g., Sheaffer's Lifetime), it's, nevertheless, a reliable gold point, with just the right amount of tipping material, and of excellent geometry.

In the hand, the Vacumatic is supremely comfortable, it becomes an extension of your hand, and, hence, your thoughts. Writing with the Vac is such a pleasant experience. It's so effortless, gliding across the page, as if hovering above it.

This particular nib is a rare needlepoint, writing a line of about 0.2 mm (on my paper) with light pressure. Despite being very fine, it's also incredibly smooth, writing confident rapid strokes in virtually all directions, without feeling scratchy or catching the paper. Today, if you want a needlepoint nib, your only option is a custom grind. Yes, you can buy a Japanese XXF nib, but such nibs are designed to be used primarily with Japanese handwriting where short, downward strokes are required. If you have small handwriting, if you need to write a lot on poor-quality paper, or if you write a business cursive (e.g., Spencerian penmanship, Palmer Method, etc.), this nib is likely to become one of your top performers.

Cosmetically, the pen is in great shape! There are no defects or flaws, just very minor surface wear, difficult to see with the naked eye. The gold-filled trim is in equally great condition. The imprint is strong.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, XXF, capped, the red hues indicate barrel transparency

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF

(Sold) This is a 1945 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major in Azure Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pen measures about 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF, uncapped, with the blind cap removed

The Parker Vacumatic I'm offering today is everything I want in a fountain pen. It all starts with the design. It's a handsome, graceful, streamlined shape with superb ergonomics, posted or not. Next, the material, in this case, the gorgeous, highly coveted Azure Pearl celluloid, which has incredible depth, vibrancy, and excellent barrel transparency. The gold-filled trim is elegant, sparse, and adds a touch of luxury. The vacuum filling mechanism goes beyond today's ubiquitous C/C filler, and provides a large-capacity system that is as simple as it is efficient, a writer's dream. Finally, the nib and feed. One of the best such units ever made. No, it's not as technologically advanced as Sheaffer's Triumph, but it has amazing ink flow latitude, allowing a broad variety of tunings, to satisfy even the most discerning writer. 

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

The pen is awesome, yes, but it is the nib that steals the show. It's a beautifully made 14k gold nib, with ample tipping material, of perfect geometry. The incredible property of this nib is its ability to provide a smooth, cushioned ride, without compromising writing ability. While a lot of modern gold nibs are optimized for smoothness, their overly polished writing surface is prone to develop flow issues, particularly hard-starts. Parker came up with just the right kind of tipping geometry for the Vacumatic nib. It's a nib that never falters, never skips, never starves for ink. If you write with a light touch, it will give you a superb, consistent monoline. If you press harder, it will reward you with a hint of line variation, and will instantly add character to your handwriting. You put it away for a few minutes uncapped, no problem, it will start back up the instant you put it to paper. The oversize ebonite feed, with its broad ink and air exchange channels, does a great job buffering ink and regulating its flow, delivering just the right amount of ink to the nib's point, responding to your most subtle variations in pressure, angle, and rotation. With light pressure, the pen writes an XF line of about 0.3 mm, but will open up nicely with increased pressure, giving you an almost semi-flexible character.

The pen is in excellent overall condition, without any flaws or defects, with gorgeous color and very nice barrel transparency. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. The imprint is strong.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Azure Pearl, XF, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F

(SOLD) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major in Golden Pearl celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand, without chemicals). The pen measures about 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F, uncapped, with the blind cap off

When I work on vintage fountain pens or write with them, I seem to experience the world as a better place. A place that it could be. I feel the same way about the pen community, which is an enclave of sanity for me, a place that's peaceful, welcoming, full of tolerance and optimism. A place full of fantastic people who find utter joy in the simple act of handwriting. A place where "all the doors are red." I am very thankful for being a part of it.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F, nib close-up

Today, I have a pen that epitomizes my love of fountain pens. It's a Parker Vacumatic Major in Golden Pearl celluloid. To me, it's one of the most beautiful pens ever made. The shape is so simple, streamlined, graceful, and yet so comfortable to hold. The lines are gentle, flowing, undisturbed by a filling contraption; the blind cap flawlessly incorporated into the barrel . The section is slightly tapered, with a gentle lip, and supremely ergonomic. Posted or not, the Vacumatic remains well-balanced, feeling like an extension of my hand. The gold-filled trim is subtle, distinguished, but without overpowering the gorgeous, shimmering, gleaming celluloid.

The nib writes a confident Fine line of about 0.4 mm (on my paper) with a pleasant amount of "spring." It's tuned to write at the lightest touch, which I strongly believe is crucial to a satisfying writing performance. The nib starts writing the instant you put it to paper. It seems to develop an relationship, a physical and emotional bond with the paper, a mechanism that provides a seamless transition between your thoughts and the page. There's no more barrier between you and your writing, no excuse for not picking up the pen. And when you start writing, the world becomes a better place and "all the doors are red."

The pen is in fantastic condition, without any flaws or defects, with a gorgeous, vibrant celluloid, excellent barrel transparency, and great gold-filled trim. The filling mechanism works efficiently and holds a lot of ink. The imprint is slightly faded, but still crisp. If you wish to buy this pen as a present, please, let me know and I will include a gift box with the pen. Thanks!

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Black, F

(SOLD) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Black celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Black, F, uncapped, with the blind cap removed

My ultimate goal in restoring vintage fountain pens is for my customers to enjoy writing with them. I, therefore, carefully select suitable candidates from among fountain pens made between the early 1930s and the late 1950s by the four major U.S. brands, as I believe most of the models made in that era can be fantastic daily performers, even for the discerning writer. 

To me, writing with a restored vintage fountain pen is all about the joy it brings me. The pen I am offering today is a great example of such a pen, yet it is also quite affordable. Because it has a small blemish on the cap and the imprint is a bit faded, the pen's available at a 25% discount, which makes it one of the most affordable Vacumatics today. I am guessing the pen will sell quickly, so if you're interested in ordering it, please do not delay and contact me as soon as you can.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Black, F, nib tune-up

If you like pens that write a conservative, dry line for use on poor-quality office paper, this pen is not for you. However, if you enjoy soft, gold nibs that dampen vibrations, joyfully grab onto the surface of the paper, and lay down a juicy, enjoyable line, look no further. The nib is tuned to write wet, which means that it will help bring out the color depth, saturation, shading, and even sheen out of your most beautiful inks. If you use it on great paper, such as Tomoe River, the ink is likely to pool slightly, giving you that luscious, velvety smooth look that you, no doubt, have seen in the awesome work by @gourmetpens , @attilasultis , and @catharinemisook (among others). Such a line is the reason why I, and many other pen fans, reach for the vintage fountain pen, as modern pens are, typically, tuned to write with quite a bit more restraint. This pen, however, is anything but shy. It brims with self-confidence and will take your creative, characterful handwriting in stride, giving it the flair it is capable of and deserves.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Black, F, capped

Parker 51 Aerometric, Teal Blue, B

(SOLD) This is a 1949 full-size Parker 51 Aerometric fountain pen in Teal Blue, with a gold-filled cap, and a 14k gold Broad nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand).

Parker 51 Aerometric, Teal Blue, B, uncapped

I am often asked to recommend a vintage pen for a new fountain pen enthusiast. Say, you've tried a Lamy Safari, a TWSBI Vac700, perhaps even a Pilot Custom 74, and you've swallowed the bug. There are a few vintage models that can be excellent "first vintage" pens, but the Parker 51 Aerometric is probably the safest bet. No, it is not made of a colorful, intricately patterned, modern acrylic, but it's everything else you want in a fountain pen.

Parker 51 Aerometric, Teal Blue, B, nib close-up

Let's start with the nib. Most Parker 51s came with a Fine nib. This particular nib, however, is a Broad, a truly rare model! It lays down a juicy line of about 0.7 mm (on my paper), with a slight stub-like quality. It's dependable and brimming with self-confidence. A firm nib, but feeling soft on paper, thanks to its excellent shock-absorbing properties. It's a perfect nib for a beginner due to its forgiving nature. Yes, it will let you get away with all kinds of quirks of your grip, angle, rotation, and writing pressure. A nib that's ready to write, whenever you command it to. And, it looks as good as new, with ample tipping material, of perfect geometry.

Parker 51 Aerometric, Teal Blue, B, showing the filler unit, a clear sac

The pen has superb ergonomics thanks to the long, streamlined shape, with a comfortable, step-less section, and excellent balance, posted or not. The filling mechanism has just been completely overhauled and will last for decades without having to be serviced. It's easy to use, efficient, and holds a lot of ink. Finally, the appearance. Again, unless you must have a super colorful bespoke acrylic pen, the 51 is a handsome beast. It's somewhat toned-down, classy appearance makes it a great office writer. It will look stylish, but without drawing unwanted attention. The little bit of gold-filled "bling" is actually very tastefully done and adds quite a bit of character to the pen.

The pen is in fantastic condition, without any flaws or defects. One interesting bit about the barrel is that the date imprint is missing. It was uncommon but some P51s did come without a date imprint. It's just an interesting detail, and I thought I'd mention it.

Parker 51 Aerometric, Teal Blue, B, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Semi-Flex

(Sold) This is a 1945 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major in Golden Pearl celluloid, with a transparent barrel, gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold XF Semi-Flex nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pen measures 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, uncapped, with the blind cap removed

In 1945, the U.S. fountain pen industry was thriving, despite a severe economic crisis, including material and labor shortages. Parker continued making its highly-successful Blue Diamond Vacumatic pens, perfecting their design and manufacturing process. The pen I'm offering today is a great example of the model, made out of the gorgeous Golden Pearl celluloid, with an awesome 14k gold XF semi-flexible nib. The pen looks virtually as good as new. The shimmering, gleaming celluloid has incredible depth and vibrancy. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. Barrel transparency is so good, it looks as though the pen had never been filled. The imprint is strong. And the nib, oh the nib!

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

Despite some obvious similarities, each pen I restore is unique. I select from among vintage pens that can, potentially, make excellent daily writers, even for people who are new to the fountain pen hobby. Sometimes, I come across a pen that's special. This pen is one of those pens.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, nib close-up

What makes it special? Yes, it's in amazing cosmetic condition and has been overhauled, serviced, and ready for your favorite ink. But what makes it truly awesome is the nib. The nib will be particularly appealing to those of you who like Japanese fine and extra-fine nibs. It lays down a confident, self-assured line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper) when writing with a light hand (0.6" with increased pressure). It's been tuned to perform flawlessly at the lightest pressure, grabbing onto the surface of the paper and not letting go until you command it otherwise. If you press harder, the nib is going to respond with a pleasant "give," opening up just enough to give you a hint of line variation, adding character to your handwriting. No, it's not flexible enough for Spencerian or Ornamental Penmanship broad swells, but it will be great for a business cursive, and virtually any modern "small" handwriting.

The nib makes it a fantastically versatile tool. If you fill it with a dry ink, you'll be able to use it as a dedicated office writer. If you ink it up with a wet, saturated ink, you're going to get that awesome juicy flow, which, combined with the line variation, is going to bring the best out of your inks, particularly shading, even sheen. It's a very fine point, yet it's very smooth and easy to use. Quite honestly, this nib is likely to outperform a lot of modern gold nibs, unless, of course, you prefer very firm nibs, such as those on a Platinum #3776.

This pen would be an ideal first "top-tier" vintage pen for a fountain pen enthusiast, and it would make a fantastic Christmas gift for a family member or close friend. If you intend this to be a present, please, let me know and I will include a nice gift box with the pen.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Semi-Flex, capped

Parker Lucky Curve in Black Chased Hard Rubber, XXF Full-Flex

(On hold) This is a 1920s Parker Lucky Curve "ring top" button-filler fountain pen in black chased hard rubber (BCHR) with a 14k gold XXF full-flex nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand).

Parker Lucky Curve in Black Chased Hard Rubber, XXF Full-Flex, uncapped

This is a superb example of the well-respected and highly collectible Parker Lucky Curve from the 1920s. It's in amazing condition, without any trace of wear or fading, which plagues the vast majority of BCHR pens from that era. The pen looks as good as new, and it would be a perfect specimen for the high-end collector. The imprint is strong.

Parker Lucky Curve in Black Chased Hard Rubber, XXF Full-Flex, nib close-up

The pen was designed specifically with Spencerian penmanship in mind. It's a classic "ring top," meant to be worn around one's neck, so it's a lightweight, compact pen when capped (4.5"). However, it converts to a full-size pen when posted (5.7"), as it is meant to be used that way. In terms of ergonomics, the pen resembles those of a well-designed dip pen holder, with a somewhat long, streamlined shape and great balance. It's extremely comfortable to hold, lightweight, and very pleasant to the touch. The button filling mechanism works flawlessly and holds a lot of ink. 

The pen is a calligrapher's tool, a high-precision writing instrument, capable of producing beautiful penmanship. It was designed for a skilled hand, and will perform as well as any flexible pen of that era. I would rank it as a "full-flex," just shy of being a wet noodle, but it offers excellent flexibility, and fantastic snap-back. With light pressure, it writes an XXF line of about 0.3 mm (on my paper), and you can get the line even thinner if you use dry ink and dry paper. The nib excels at transitions between hairlines and swells, which is the cornerstone of Ornamental Penmanship. If you are new to flexible nibs, this pen is probably not for you, unless you're willing to learn its dynamics and try to write with a light hand. The best news is this pen had not been used much in the past, if at all, which means the nib is free from any (invisible) damage that many vintage flex nibs develop over time (due to using excessive pressure). The tipping material is ample and of perfect geometry. 

Parker Lucky Curve in Black Chased Hard Rubber, XXF Full-Flex, posted