(SOLD) This is a 1949 Parker 51 Aerometric fountain pen in Navy Gray with a stainless steel cap and a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, nib tune-up, and a gentle hand polish. I work in accord with current best practices in pen restoration and I use high-quality replacement components and specialized tools.
In the late 1940s, Parker 51 was already the world's most wanted pen. The company was having trouble meeting the demand. It's fair to say that the 51 was the iPhone of the 1940s, a pen coveted by a great many people. The company issued a series of advertisements asking people to be patient and promising increase production to meet the demand. The quote I wrote comes from such an advertisement.
This particular 51 is in amazing condition, one of the nicest 51s that's ever come across my desk. I have a feeling the pen had never been used, but I did replace the connector and sac with a new-old-stock unit, as the original had softened over time. Some 51 connector would inexplicably become soft (esp., the part on which the sac is seated) and need to be replaced. Some restorers choose to fix the connector by drilling it out and gluing a piece of plastic tubing. I prefer to replace the whole thing, as it is a more elegant and durable solution.
The nib is a gorgeous Fine! It writes a confident line, one that I tuned a bit above average in terms of flow, so you can enjoy that gliding sensation, but without making a mess on less-than-perfect paper. The nib has a large sweet spot, and is forgiving of your holding angle and rotation about the page. It writes at the lightest touch, but will also take a heavy hand with ease. This pen would make a fantastic EDC, a work pen, a great pen for taking notes in college, or writing in your journal. You'd be hard pressed to find a more versatile fountain pen, vintage or modern.
If you've wanted to try a 51, but were apprehensive about buying one of uncertain provenance, look no further! This is a fantastic pen and it has to be experienced to understand why so many pen enthusiasts firmly believe the Parker 51 is the best fountain pen ever made. I think that if you're going to own just one vintage pen, the Aerometric 51, with a Fine nib, should be it.