Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, F

(Sold) This is a mid-1940s White Dot Sheaffer Triumph Craftsman Vac fountain pen in striated Carmine celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Triumph 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). This is a medium-size pen measuring a little over 5" capped and 0.44" in diameter. It posts very well, and writes a true-to-size Fine line of about 0.4 mm, so it's possible it sold as a Medium.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, uncapped, with the plunger partially extended

One of the most intractable problems that a fountain pen designer must try to solve is handling the expansion of ink due to changes in temperature and pressure. Today, sadly, but understandably, most pen makers focus on aesthetics rather than engineering aspects of pen design, and, as a result, most pens made today employ a similar, simple method of regulating flow, i.e.,  a plastic (or, rarely, ebonite) feed with a relatively larger surface area and one (sometimes two) channels. As a result, modern pens are not particularly good at dealing with ink flow fluctuations, particularly those due to changes in temperature. We keep hearing stories of pens "exploding," leaking, burping, when the temperature or atmospheric pressure go up or down by a significant amount.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment. Also, note the oversize ebonite feed

In the early 1940s, Sheaffer brought to market its own solution to regulating ink flow, the Triumph system. The Triumph solves the ink expansion problem by providing an oversize ebonite feed with a larger surface area and one larger channel that runs inside it. The feed is enclosed inside a cylinder made of 14k gold, which offers an additional buffering capability and further protects the system against external factors, such as drying out. By today's standards, the Triumph is "ahead of anything in the field" despite predating modern pens by more than half a century. 

What this means to us, writers, is that a Triumph pen is going to give us that silky smooth, well-controlled, generous, steady, and delightful flow of ink, regardless of atmospheric conditions, and will be resilient against quirks of ink, paper, and writing technique. The pen I'm offering today is a great specimen of the Triumph, in fantastic condition, and made of the highly coveted Carmine celluloid. And, it's priced well below most modern pens of comparable features and performance.

The nib, which probably sold as a Medium, lays down a generous Fine line of about 0.4 mm (on my paper). The oversize feed keeps the flow steady and consistent. The nib is firm but feels smooth and soft on paper, thanks to its ingenious upturned design and the vibration dampening properties of the gold point. Cosmetically, it's great! The gleaming, vibrant Carmine celluloid is so gorgeous, and irresistibly so. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. The imprint is strong.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, capped

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, XF

(Sold) This is a 1942 White Dot Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Vac fountain pen in striated Carmine celluloid, with gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Triumph 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). This is a medium-size pen, measuring around 126 mm capped (5"), and 12 mm (0.46") in diameter. It posts very nicely, like all Sheaffer wartime pens, so it should be comfortable even for people with larger hands.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, XF. uncapped, with the plunger partially extended

When it comes to classy good looks, the wartime Sheaffer Statesman is definitely in my Top Five. Made of the highly coveted striated Carmine celluloid, the pen looks stunning. The material has such depth, such vibrancy, such shimmering character. The barrel has excellent transparency, and the gold-filled trim looks superb. The imprint is strong. Quite honestly, the pen looks as good as any modern luxury pen and would feel right at home sharing a display case with the latest Montegrappa or Visconti. And, this is the more desirable (and rare) Statesman variant, with a matching striated section and ink stored directly inside the barrel.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, XF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

However, this pen also happens to be a fantastic performer. It is meant to post securely, so it should be perfectly comfortable for people with larger hands. It's balanced so well, it feels like an extension of your hand. When I put it to paper, I get this exquisite extra-fine monoline of about 0.4 mm. A line that never falters, never skips, or starves for ink. A line that impresses with its sheer willingness to perform. Unlike modern XF nibs, the Triumph has none of the usual toothiness or scratchiness, virtually regardless of your grip, holding angle, or writing pressure. A great pen for anyone wishing to improve their penmanship, particularly cursive, thanks to its impressively larger sweet spot and forgiving nature. And, it holds up to 1.6 ml of ink (using the two-stroke method).

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Fountain Pen, Carmine, XF, capped

Sheaffer Triumph Vac Fountain Pen, Carmine Red, XXF

(Sold) This is a 1942 White Dot Sheaffer Triumph Vac fountain pen in striated Carmine Red celluloid, with a gold-filled trim, and a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Triumph XXF nib. The pen comes with a matching mechanical pencil. Both the pen and pencil have been completely overhauled and function up to Sheaffer's factory specification. The pen has been disassembled, gently cleaned, the filling mechanism was rebuilt, the nib was tuned for optimal performance, ink flow was adjusted, and it was given a quick hand polish with a soft cloth.

Sheaffer Triumph Vac Fountain Pen, Carmine Red, XXF, uncapped, with the plunger partially extended

I have been hoping to have a nice offer during the holiday season, and I am so excited to have found a great Sheaffer pen and pencil set for you this year. This is a superb kit, ideal for the passionate writer. If you write a business cursive, Spencerian penmanship, or American Cursive Handwriting, this set will work like a dream. Whether you're an experienced scribe or just starting out, having the right tool is crucial, and, fortunately, this wartime fountain pen is among the best cursive writers I've ever tested. And, best of all, it is in awesome shape!

Sheaffer Triumph Vac Fountain Pen, Carmine Red, XXF, nib profile, showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment. Also, note the transparent barrel showing the background through.

What makes this fountain pen a superb cursive writer is the very fact that it was designed, from ground up, specifically, for business penmanship. Made during an era when handwriting ruled supreme, the Triumph is an utterly enjoyable writing instrument, rewarding its owner with consistent and forgiving performance, day in, day out. The Triumph nib, designed on the "rocker" principle, offers a firm, yet cushioned ride, accommodating a variety of grips, angles, and degrees of writing pressure. Despite having a very fine point (0.3 mm on my paper), it never feels scratchy, or even toothy, never catching the paper, even in rapid upward strokes, virtually regardless of its rotation about the page. And if you need an ultra XF line, simply flip it upside down, it was designed to write that way, too!

Sheaffer Triumph Vac Fountain Pen, Carmine Red, XXF, close-up of the beautiful material and strong imprint

The high-capacity, efficient vacuum-filled mechanism ensures long writing sessions between fills, and the transparent barrel allows you to see the ink sloshing around inside it. The gleaming, shimmering celluloid has a deep, rich, vibrant color and awesome chatoyancy. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape, adding a tiny bit of luxury and "bling" to the set. Last. but not least, the pencil works flawlessly, comes with a full eraser, and is ready for the standard 0.9 mm refill.

Sheaffer Triumph Vac Fountain Pen, Carmine Red, XXF, capped

Sheaffer Craftsman Fountain Pen, Carmine, F

(sold) This is a mid-1940s Sheaffer Craftsman lever-filled fountain pen in striated Carmine red celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone Feather Touch 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 (by hand, with a soft cloth). The pen measures 5.1" capped and 0.45" in diameter.

The vast majority of modern fountain pens are made of injection-molded plastic. Such pens are relatively inexpensive, as the manufacturing process lends itself to the usual cost-saving thanks to mass production. If you wish to own a more visually interesting  pen, you need to pay more, and your typical material choices include acrylic, ebonite, wood, and celluloid.  Each material has its pros and cons, but there seems to be a consensus in the pen community that celluloid is the royalty of pen materials.

Celluloid is truly an organic material, made from natural cotton seed fibers, colored with natural dyes, created in a painstakingly long, intricate, and tightly controlled process. Today, only a handful of pen companies use celluloid due to the incredibly high cost of the material and the inherent manufacturing complexity involved. Still, many discerning customers are willing to pay a substantial premium for modern Montegrappa celluloid pen. The material's beauty, its depth and chatoyancy, it's shimmering quality are simply irresistible.

If you are interested in owning a celluloid pen but are discouraged by the price, may I offer you an alternative? Here is a beautiful, restored, vintage Sheaffer Craftsman, made of the famous striated Carmine celluloid, a lever-filler, vested with a fantastic 14k gold Feather Touch Fine nib. A pen that's truly as beautiful as it is functional, and, best of all, it costs a fraction of a modern Italian celluloid fountain pen.

The pen is in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects, with gorgeous, vibrant, smooth celluloid, excellent gold-filled trim, and a strong imprint. The nib is tuned to write at the lightest touch, laying down a Fine line of about 0.4 mm (on my paper). The pen provides an enjoyable, smooth, confident writing experience that would be very hard to match by a modern pen, regardless of price. It would be an ideal first vintage pen for a fountain pen enthusiast, but, in the hand of a skilled fountain pen writer, it would produce the most graceful handwriting, and, most importantly, give you lots of joy and a great reason to just write.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Oversize Fountain Pen, Carmine, XXF

(On hold) This is a 1942 White Dot Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Oversize fountain pen in striated Carmine celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone Triumph Lifetime 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 was the largest pen in Sheaffer's Triumph line-up, measuring 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Oversize Fountain Pen, Carmine, XXF, uncapped, with the plunger partially extended

Sheaffer's wartime manufacturing capability was among the best in the entire U.S. precision industry. The Iowa company ran an extensive R&D program, with laboratories that were at least a decade ahead of other pen makers. Sheaffer implemented a sophisticated testing and quality control program, including machine testing of all of the pen's features, including how well it would fit into a breast pocket of a business suit, without doing any long-term damage to the fabric. Such attention to detail is one of the important reasons why we can enjoy 1940s Sheaffer pens today. If restored well, these pens are going to give joy and awesome performance to even the most discerning fountain pen enthusiasts. 

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Oversize Fountain Pen, Carmine, XXF, nib close-up

The Valiant was Sheaffer's pride and joy. A pen that was truly as beautiful as it was functional. Made of the vibrant, complex striated Carmine celluloid, the pen I'm offering today looks as classy as some of the modern Italian celluloid pens, yet you can have it for a fraction of the price of a Montegrappa or a Visconti. Celluloid is the royalty of fountain pen materials, visually stunning and extremely pleasant to the touch. It's been described as warm and inviting, even luscious. The pen has a semi-transparent barrel, which adds complexity to the material and offers an important functional advantage. The gold-filled trim complements the streamlined design, with a touch of luxury. There's one small scratch on the cap, but otherwise, the pen is in excellent shape, including flawless trim and a strong imprint.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Oversize Fountain Pen, Carmine, XXF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment. Also note the transparent barrel and strong imprint

The pen comes vested with the awesome "wrap-around" Triumph XXF nib. The nib lays down a consistent line of about 0.2 mm, which puts it in the needlepoint vicinity, yet it feels smooth on paper and writes rapid upstrokes without ever catching the paper. For a point that fine, the nib has a large sweet spot. It would be an ideal tool with which to write a business cursive, the Palmer Method, or any of the modern logographic writing systems. You're not going to find a modern XXF nib that will come even close to the Triumph in terms of performance with a light hand and rapid strokes. Did I mention it is a beautiful, huge chunk of gold? 

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Oversize Fountain Pen, Carmine, XXF, capped

The pen is priced at $169. Please, contact me if you're interested in buying it and I will email you a PayPal invoice. Shipping fees are listed on this page. Thanks!

Sheaffer Triumph Fountain Pen, Carmine, F

(SOLD) This is a 1942 White Dot Sheaffer Triumph fountain pen in striated Carmine celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime 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). I work according to current "best practices" in pen restoration and I use high-quality replacement materials. I completely removed the old Sheaffer "packing" material and replaced it with a modern material that's of higher quality and better durability than the original. This is a full-size pen, measuring 5.1" capped and 0.47" in diameter.

Sheaffer Triumph Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, uncapped, with the plunger partially extended

As the U.S. entered World War II, the pen industry was at a pivotal stage in its history. Sheaffer was tasked by the Government to manufacture high-precision components for the war effort, including mission-critical bomb fuses. Despite severe material and labor shortages, the Iowa company not only succeeded in staying afloat, but it also fulfilled its obligations, hired new staff, and expanded its real estate. Sheaffer attributed a lot of its success to its use of high-quality materials, such as gold and celluloid, and, most importantly, its advanced research laboratories. Sheaffer engineers worked tireless to perfect the fountain pen as a writing instrument, and its child was the Triumph nib and feed system.

Sheaffer Triumph Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, nib close-up

The pen I am offering today is a great example of the venerable Sheaffer Triumph. Made of the gorgeous striated Carmine celluloid, with a wide gold-filled cap band and the characteristic rounded clip, the pen is one of the most beautiful writing instruments of the 1940s. The pen is in fantastic condition, with a gleaming, deep, rich, and vibrant material, a nicely transparent barrel, and excellent trim. In fact, the pen is so gorgeous that it would feel completely at home in a display case next to some of the modern Italian celluloid pens by Montegrappa. 

Sheaffer Triumph Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment.

The large Triumph Lifetime nib is in superb condition. It lays down a Fine line of about 0.5 mm (on my paper), and it glides across the page effortlessly. The nib is designed on the rocker principle, which gives it a unique feel and a large "sweet spot." In daily writing, the pen will feel smooth, virtually regardless of your grip, holding angle, and rotation about the page. It writes equally good strokes in all directions, without ever catching the paper or feeling scratchy. Yet, despite the smoothness, the nib writes confidently, never having any hard-start or skipping issues that plague modern buttery smooth nibs. And if you need an XXF line, just flip it upside down - it was designed to be able to write this way, too. The vacuum filling mechanism works efficiently and holds more ink than some of the largest modern piston fillers.

Sheaffer Triumph Fountain Pen, Carmine, F, capped

Sheaffer Triumph Tuckaway (early), Carmine, XF

(Sold) This is a Dot Sheaffer Triumph Tuckaway Vac fountain pen in striated Carmine celluloid with a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Triumph 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). I completely replaced Sheaffer's original "packing" material with a high-quality modern replacement, using current "best practices" in pen restoration.

Sheaffer Triumph Tuckaway (early), Carmine, XF, posted

The Fountain Pen Week special offer continues with another rare, beautiful pen at a reasonable price. This time, a gorgeous Sheaffer Tuckaway in striated Carmine celluloid, with a fantastic Triumph XF nib. This is a rare, early clipless model, which is particularly hard to come by in red.

Sheaffer Triumph Tuckaway (early), Carmine, XF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

The pen is an ideal pocket or purse pen. It's very small when capped (4.4" capped and 5.2" posted), sturdy, and a fantastic performer. It's the kind of pen you carry with you at all times, and it will reward you with instant start-up, a smooth, controlled line (about 0.4 mm on my paper), and a nib that's particularly forgiving of your angle and rotation. Take it with you to work, your favorite coffee shop, on your travels. It will fit perfectly in the pen loop of your Traveler's notebook. In fact, it seems custom-made for it!

Sheaffer Triumph Tuckaway (early), Carmine, XF, capped

If you're a fan of the Kaweco Sport, Liliput, TWSBI Mini, you're going to love this pen. Except, I think it's a better "pocket pen" design than its modern counterparts. It's truly as beautiful as it is functional, the vacuum filling system holding up to 1.5 ml of ink (using the two-stroke filling method). The pen is in very good cosmetic condition, with faint signs of use, and no flaws or defects. There's some wear on the section threads (virtually unavoidable on this model). The imprint is strong. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape, without a trace of brassing. Barrel transparency is good. The platinum mask on the nib is as good as new.

Sheaffer Triumph Tuckaway (early), Carmine, XF, compared to the modern Aurora Optima

Sheaffer Balance "Lady" Carmine, XXF

(On Hold) This is a mid-1930s Sheaffer Balance "Lady" (a.k.a., "350") fountain pen in striated Carmine celluloid, a lever-filler, with a 14k gold XXF nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a gentle but thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, adjustment of ink flow, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pen measures 4.7" capped and 0.42" in diameter.

Sheaffer Balance "Lady" Carmine, XXF, uncapped

Last time I posted a Carmine Sheaffer Balance, I received a lot of inquires and some of you missed out on that pen. I am happy to report that I have just restored another beautiful "Lady" Sheaffer Balance in the gorgeous striated Carmine celluloid, with a smooth, precise 14k gold XXF nib.

Sheaffer Balance "Lady" Carmine, XXF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment. Also, note a nice ink view window.

The pen is as gorgeous as it gets, in my opinion. It's probably my favorite fountain pen material of the 1930s. Sheaffer was a major innovator in the area of material science, and the striated celluloid came out of its laboratories, following years of research, trying to replace hard rubber as the main pen material. Obviously, the Iowa company succeeded, and the Carmine celluloid is among the most sought after materials in the vintage world today. The pen is in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects, with only very minor surface wear, excellent gold-filled trim, and a perfectly usable ink view window in the section. A handsome pen, it will make a perfect companion on your travels or a faithful friend on your visits to a coffee shop. It'll make your journaling that much more enjoyable. Once you hold it in your hand, put it to paper, you'll want to write, write, write.

Sheaffer Balance "Lady" Carmine, XXF, nib close-up

The nib is, once again, one of my frequently requested points. A true XXF, it lays down a consistent line of about 0.3 mm, and if you write on very dry paper, such as Rhodia, you might easily get it down to a needlepoint width (0.2 mm). However, the nib is free of most of the unpleasant toothiness associated with modern XXF nibs. That's thanks to the nib's incredible ability to absorb vibrations coming from the roughness of the paper, also known as "feedback." You will still feel connected to the paper, the pen being an extension of your hand, and, in turn, of your thoughts, but the experience will be full of joy. I do want to point out that the nib performs at its best if you write with a light hand. It will reward you with consistent performance in strokes in virtually all directions, including long curves, without ever catching the paper. However, if you write with a heavy hand, this pen is probably not for you.

Sheaffer Balance "Lady" Carmine, XXF, capped

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Tuckaway, Carmine, XF

(SOLD) This is a mid-1940s White Dot Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Tuckaway in striated Carmine celluloid with a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Triumph XF 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).

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Tuckaway, Carmine, XF, posted

The Tuckaway was made primarily as a "lady" pen, and was marketed to women during the war years. As more and more women were entering the workforce, elevating their economic and social status, their demand for nice fountain pens increased. Today, the Tuckaway remains one of the best portable pen designs ever made. So many companies have tried to create the perfect pocket pen over the years, but few have been able to match Sheaffer's ingenuity.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Tuckaway, Carmine, XF, compared to a modern Aurora Optima

If you love the Kaweco Sport, Liliput, TWSBI (Vac) Mini, Sailor Sapporo Mini, etc., you're going to love this pen. The Tuckaway's strength is its superior ergonomics, as it "transforms" into a full-size pen when posted. It's just the right size to fit most people's hands comfortably, it is equipped with a vacuum filling mechanism, and it comes with the fantastic Triumph nib. And, finally, the gorgeous Carmine celluloid. In the world of portable pens, it doesn't get much better than this.

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Tuckaway, Carmine, XF, nib profile showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment, a clear ink window, and strong imprint

The nib probably sold as a Fine, but I'd rank it closer to a modern XF. It lays down a self-assured, assertive 0.3 mm line on my paper, gliding across the paper without much effort. A firm, smooth, dependable performer, this would be an ideal journaling pen. Take it along with you on your travels or your favorite coffee shop. Get immersed in your thoughts, feelings, let the pen connect you to your writing, and enjoy the ride. Whenever you pause, take a look at the material and admire its depth, vibrancy, and chatoyancy. 

Sheaffer Triumph Statesman Tuckaway, Carmine, XF, capped

Cosmetically, the pen is in excellent condition, without any flaws or defects, and with only very minor surface wear. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. The imprint is strong. Take a look at the comparison shot with the Aurora Optima. I think the Carmine celluloid is as beautiful as that of Aurora.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Tuckaway XF, Set in Box, Carmine

(SOLD) This is an early 1940s White Dot Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Tuckaway Fountain Pen (a.k.a., "1250") and Pencil Set in striated Carmine celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone Triumph Extra-Fine nib and a matching pencil, in original box. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism (replacing existing "packing" material with modern high-quality replacement), adjustment to ink flow, a nib tune-up, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pencil has been refilled with Sheaffer's original 1940s refill.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Tuckaway XF, Set in Box, Carmine, posted

This is a gorgeous, rare Sheaffer Tuckaway set. The Tuckaway was made in a few different models, this one being the Valiant, marketed primarily to men. Made of the exquisite, gleaming Carmine celluloid, with a transparent barrel and a matching striated section, this is a pen that's bound to bring a smile to your face. The set is in excellent condition, free of any flaws or blemishes, with just the faintest surfaces wear, difficult to see with the naked eye. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape.

The pen is a fantastic writer! It lays down a consistent, self-assured, even cocky line of about 0.3 mm on my business paper. This puts it easily in the XF territory, possibly even XXF if you write on dry paper, such as Rhodia. However, the firm Lifetime nib has none of the "shortcomings" of a conventional XF nib, so it'll allow you to glide effortlessly across the page, with consistent strokes, in virtually all directions. A  modern Japanese XF nib will give you an equally fine line and smooth performance, but it will not be as good at rapid upstrokes and curves. It will also feel considerably more toothy than the Triumph and will have a very small sweet spot. Many of my customers who've tried the Triumph XF nib have been surprised at how smooth and forgiving it feels. I tuned it to write on the wet side, so that you can further enjoy that hovering sensation.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Tuckaway XF, Set in Box, Carmine, nib close-up showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

If you write a business cursive or want to learn Spencerian handwriting or the Palmer Method, this will be an excellent tool with which to do that. It's a portable set, comes in the original box, and will fit in your favorite small case, such as Kaweco Sport. Posted, this "Tucky" converts to a full-size fountain pen and will feel comfortable even for people with large hands. And, it is so beautiful, don't you think?

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Tuckaway XF, Set in Box, Carmine, capped.

Sheaffer Tuckaway Vac in Carmine, XXF

(SOLD) This is a mid-1940s Sheaffer Tuckaway Vac in striated Carmine celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone Triumph XXF 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. I work according to current "best practices" in pen restoration.

Sheaffer Tuckaway Vac in Carmine, XXF, uncapped, with the plunger rod partially extended

The phrase I wrote comes from Sheaffer's advertisement issued around the time the pen was made. Gender stereotypes were exploited and normalized in product marketing, and the pen industry was no different. Throughout the 1940s, as more and more women entered the workforce, Sheaffer tried to tap into women's newly acquired income, appealing to their sense of femininity, and designed the Tuckaway to be the perfect pen to fit in a woman's purse, much like lipstick. Though many pen brands had their own version of a "Lady" model, the Tuckaway was, undoubtedly, the most successful thanks to its clever, timeless design, and unrivalled writing performance.

Sheaffer Tuckaway Vac in Carmine, XXF, nib profile showing excellent geometry and alignment

The Tuckaway is not merely a small pen. In fact, the pen is small only when capped, and it converts to a full-size pen when posted. It's girth is greater than most other "Lady" pens, which makes the venerable "Tucky" a great pen to be enjoyed today by both women and men. These days, the gender stereotypes used by pen companies in the first half of the 20th century seem unnecessary, even offensive, but you cannot deny the Tuckaway's sense of gentle daintiness, elegance, and class.

The Carmine celluloid is among the most beautiful pen materials ever made. It's deep, rich, and vibrant. The color depth, along with the subtle transitions in luminosity, make, in my opinion, such a desirable color today. This particular pen is in excellent condition, one of the best specimens of this design I've seen in a long time. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. There's just some really, really minor surface wear, difficult to see with the naked eye. The imprint is strong, the ink window clear.

Sheaffer Tuckaway Vac in Carmine, XXF, posted

This pen is unique in that it comes with an XXF nib that is going to feel much smoother than a conventional needlepoint. It lays down  0.2 mm line on my business paper, which puts it easily in the needlepoint territory, yet you don't have to worry about the nib feeling scratchy or catching the paper. courtesy of the Triumph "rocker" design. Simply put, this nib has a large "sweet spot," which is virtually impossible to achieve by modern nibs of such fine width.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Vac Oversize Carmine, F

(SOLD) This is a 1942 Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Vac-filler Oversize in striated Carmine celluloid, with a transparent barrel, and a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Triumph 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 hand polish. This was the largest Sheaffer Triumph Vac filler at the time, measuring 5.2" capped, and 0.48" barrel diameter. This pen is also know as the "1250."

When the U.S. entered World War II, Sheaffer had a 40% preference rating out of nearly fifty fountain pen companies. A staggering lead in the pen industry. By comparison, today, the U.S. has only a handful of pen brands, very few of which manufacture pens in house, and none of which make nibs, except for special-order pieces made by a jeweler (Newton Pens). Sheaffer leadership was present all across the market, the Valiant I am offering here, occupying the top of the line, but even the entry-level Balance Vac-fillers were of excellent quality.

The phrase I wrote is a 1942 quote by Sheaffer's Chairman speaking on the subject of quality. I think it sums up this particular pen perfectly. The Triumph Valiant was an marvel of technology, born in an era of a serious economic and political crisis and severe material and labor shortages. Sheaffer engineers made a pen that had it all: a timeless, ergonomically sound design, a breathtakingly beautiful celluloid, a vacuum filling mechanism (holding up to 1.7 ml of ink), and a phenomenal Triumph nib and feed system.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Vac Oversize Carmine, F, uncapped, with the plunger partially extended

I call the Triumph a "system" because it was more than just a nib and a feed. Today's pen makers, with a few exceptions, buy nib and feed screw-in units from third-party manufacturers. The units are of high quality, but they have a simple construction and a somewhat generic performance. The Triumph, on the other hand, was the result of a lot of hands-on craftsmanship by a team of highly skilled technicians, who made sure each system performed perfectly before it left the factory.

This nib is ground to a Sheaffer "standard" Fine geometry, laying down a line of about 0.4 mm (subject to variability as a function of paper, ink, and writing pressure) and the supplemental writing surface (top of the nib) that produces a much finer line of about 0.25 mm. The pen writes under the lightest pressure, it's confident, precise, and a lot of fun. I tuned it a bit more wet than Sheaffer intended, so that you can bring out the best color and shading out of your favorite inks, but without making a mess on the page.

This nib would make a perfect business writer. It's so consistent and versatile that you can easily imagine writing with it all day, not worrying about running out of ink, or the nib skipping, hard starting, or starving for ink. The transparent barrel makes it easy to gauge your remaining ink level, and it's just such a cool "demonstrator" feature!

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Vac Oversize Carmine, F, a profile photo of the Triumph nib showing perfect geometry and alignment. Also, note the crisp imprint.

Sheaffer made two versions of the Oversize Valiant. This particular model is the early variant, featuring a matching section (see the striated celluloid in the photo). Also, here the ink is stored directly inside the barrel. The other, later variant, had a more generic black section, and the ink was stored inside an inner "cartridge." I will leave it up to you to decide which model you prefer, but to me, this one takes the cake.

The pen is in excellent cosmetic condition. The celluloid gorgeous: deep, rich, and vibrant. There are no flaws or defects, only very, very slight surface wear. The niband the gold-filled trim are in equally excellent shape. Frankly, this is one of the nicest Valiants I've seen in a long time. Do not let this one slip away! It'll be a while before I can source a similar pen.

Sheaffer Triumph Valiant Vac Oversize Carmine, F, capped

Sheaffer Balance Vac-filler in Carmine, F

(SOLD) This is a late 1930s Sheaffer Balance Vac-filler in striated Carmine celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone Lifetime Fine nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, ink flow adjustment, nib tuning, and a gentle hand polish. This is a full-length slender "875" model, measuring 5.3" capped, with a barrel diameter of 0.42".

Sheaffer Balance Vac-filler in Carmine, F, with the cap off and the plunger rod partially extended

The previous Balance I posted sold in minutes, so I decided to post another. Here's a chance for you to own this classic pen, made to last, a fantastic performer, made out of gorgeous vintage celluloid, and with a superb gold nib to boot. You'd be hard-pressed to find a modern pen with an equal blend of features and performance, anywhere near the price. This pen will not disappoint!

A lot of fountain pen enthusiasts believe the Sheaffer Carmine striated celluloid is among the most beautiful fountain pen materials ever made. I am inclined to agree. This particular pen is in excellent condition, the material rich, deep, and vibrant, and with great barrel transparency. The gold-filled trim is in equally good shape. Frankly, this pen looks as though it was made yesterday. The imprint is strong.

Sheaffer Balance Vac-filler in Carmine, F, capped

The Sheaffer Balance was the BMW of fountain pens, a writing instrument that was as beautiful as it was functional. It was made to fit one's hand like a glove, and to be "driven" day in, day out, offering its user consistent and satisfying performance. The pen holds an astonishing 1.7 ml of ink, has superb ergonomics (posted or unposted), and a gold nib that is firm without feeling like a nail. It's a large, beautiful, Lifetime nib that I tuned to write a generous, wet line, so you can experience it at its best, as it's effortlessly gliding across a sheet of your favorite paper. It writes without hesitation, at the lightest pressure, and will never skip, skid, or starve for ink. How many modern pens come with such dependable, enjoyable performance out-of-the-box?

Sheaffer Balance Vac-filler in Carmine, F, side view of the 14k Lifetime nib, showing perfect tipping geometry

If you've never owned a vintage pen, but are a lover of beautiful Italian celluloid pens, look no further. This pen will look every bit as gorgeous as your Montegrappa, but will give you that special vintage performance that few modern pens can match. If you are an experienced vintage pen user, then you already know what to expect of the Lifetime nib, one of the best gold nibs ever designed. The phrase comes from a Sheaffer advertisement, and the ink is Sailor Kobe Bordeaux.