(SOLD) This is an early 1940s Sheaffer Craftsman fountain pen in striated Golden Brown celluloid, with a 14k gold "33" Extra-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).
I love restoring vintage Sheaffer fountain pens! Sheaffer made a lot of excellent pens, particularly in the 1940s, some of which have survived in desk drawers, shoe boxes, attics, cellars, and other less-than-favorable storage. Still, Sheaffer's quality was so good that most of the pens that come across my desk can be restored and enjoyed as excellent daily writers. I also find Sheaffer pens to be beginner-friendly. Let's not forget, fountain pens were made to be used all day, every day. They were meant to be writing instruments, not luxury goods. Sheaffer built a lot of quality and innovation into their pens, and, today, decades later, we can enjoy their genius: - fountain pens that "just work."
This particular pen, with its beautiful gleaming celluloid and an awesome 14k gold nib, was the "Lamy Al-Star" of the 1940s, a more upscale version of Sheaffer's Craftsman line. A medium-size pen (4.9" capped, 0.45" in diameter), the pen posts very well and is as comfortable as can be expected of the company that brought us the Balance. It is in excellent shape, both cosmetically and functionally.
The 14k XF nib is truly the star of the show. I tuned it to write at the lightest pressure, but it will reward you with a nice "give" if you press harder. The tines will spread a little, adding character to your handwriting, but do not expect this to be a flex nib. A gold point, made by a team of skilled technicians in a process that's mostly lost to us, the nib performs beautifully, producing a 0.3 mm line that's smooth, wet, consistent, and, most of all, confident.
This pen would be an ideal first vintage pen for a fountain pen novice, a gateway to the wonderful world of classic writing instruments.