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 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 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, 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, 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 Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Full-Flex

(Sold) This is a 194  Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Golden Pearl celluloid, with a 14k gold, two-tone XF 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. This is a full-size pen, and it measures 5.1" capped and 0.48" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Full-Flex, uncapped

Parker make a few kinds of nibs for its highly successful Vacumatic line. They all share one thing in common - a superb writing performance. The nib's ability to write a consistent, juicy line and its soft, gliding feel rank among the best ever made. Today, decades after the last Vacumatic left the factory, very few modern nib makers can boast a similarly high level of nib design, engineering, and craftsmanship. Most Vacumatic nibs are of the firm variety. After all, the pen was guaranteed for life (the Blue Diamond series), and a firm nib was more resilient to heavy-pressure writing. The Janesville company also made a semi-flex nib, which is less common, but equally good in terms of performance. A discerning customer was  also able to special-order a fully flexible nib that was designed specifically for Spencerian and Ornamental Penmanship. Such nibs are very rare today, and, understandably, remain highly sought after by calligraphers and collectors alike.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, XF Full-Flex, nib profile

The pen I am offering today comes vested with a rare, two-tone XF Full-Flex nib. With light pressure (i.e., "normal writing"), the pen writes a fantastic XF line of about 0.3 mm. With increased pressure, the tines open up with ease to produce a wide and juicy line of up to 1.3 mm, with excellent snap-back. Many flexible vintage nibs on the secondary market have signs of having been abused, flexed outside of their normal range. This nib, however, is perfect, virtually without any signs of use. It has ample tipping material, of excellent geometry. The tines are perfectly aligned, and I tuned the nib to write a somewhat wet line with light pressure so that you can take advantage of its ability to write a beautiful hairline with a light hand. For the best calligraphic effect, I recommend that you use a dry-writing ink (here, a KWZ IG Violet #3), which will enable you to get very subtle gradations of line width, necessary for the graceful transitions between hairlines and swells in Ornamental Penmanship.

This pen will perform at its best in a skilled hand. If you don't have much experience with vintage flex nibs, I recommend that you go slowly and gently, at least at first. High-quality flex performance is not about how soft the nib is or how wide it opens up. Rather, it's about the nib's responsiveness to minute variations in pressure, and this nib excels at that.

Cosmetically, the pen is simply gorgeous, without any flaws or defects. The celluloid has a vibrant color of incredible depth and chatoyancy. Barrel transparency is very good, the imprint is strong, and the gold-filled trim as good as new. Quite honestly, this is a beautiful pen. The only issue is a very slight plating loss on the nib, which happens to the vast majority of 1940s Vacumatics, and it has no bearing on performance.

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

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F (NOS)

(Sold) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Golden Pearl celluloid, with a 14k gold Fine nib. The pen is in a new-old-stock (NOS) condition, but I did restore it, as the filling mechanism had hardened over time, and the nib needed a tune-up. The pen was disassembled, cleaned, the filling mechanism overhauled, the nib tuned, and I polished it gently with a soft cloth. However, you can be sure that the pen has never been inked up.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F (NOS), uncapped

How would you like to be able to walk into a fountain pen store, seventy years ago, and pick out a brand-new Parker Vacumatic from inside a beautiful glass display case? I know I'd love the opportunity! Well, I have the next best thing for you today, a new-old-stock, unused Parker Vacumatic Major in gorgeous Golden Pearl celluloid, with a fantastic 14k gold Fine nib. The pen is as beautiful today as it was the day it left the factory, literally. Most pens that have spent seventy years in storage do not write well, which is why I also restored and tuned the pen's ink and feed system, so that it's ready either for your display case or your favorite ink, whichever you prefer.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F (NOS), nib profile

Over the decades, the rubber diaphragm has hardened and, as a result, the filling mechanism was "sticky." I decided to take the pen apart and restore it, the way I usually do, so that the pen is as gorgeous as it is functional when you receive it. I hope this gives you that incredible feeling of going back in time to the time when the fountain pen ruled the office.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F (NOS), nib close-up

Needless to say, the pen is in impeccable condition. The celluloid is so vibrant, so full of chatoyancy, so smooth. Barrel transparency is perfect. You can watch the pen getting filled, and you can watch how you favorite ink sloshes inside it. Of course, once you've bought the pen, you can fill it with whatever ink you want, but I'd encourage you to avoid permanent, cellulose-reactive inks, in particular, as they will stain the material, thus making the barrel opaque. Gold-filled trim is perfect, the imprint is strong.

The pen writes beautifully. Parker tuned its nibs in the 1940s to write at the lightest touch, and that's where this pen performs optimally. However, it will take greater pressure in stride and reward you with a gentle, pleasant "spring" and you might even get a hint of line variation. With light pressure, the pen writes a confident, consistent line of about 0.3 mm, but it will widen with increased pressure. I think this would be an ideal pen with which to enjoy the shading and sheen of your favorite inks, but less ideal as a daily office writer, esp. on poor-quality copy paper.

Parker Vacumatic Major Fountain Pen, Golden Pearl, F (NOS), capped

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F

(SOLD) This is a 1945 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major in Golden 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, nib tuning, and a gentle polish with a soft cloth (by hand). The pen measures just over 5" capped, and 0.5" in diameter.

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F, uncapped, with the plunger showing

The Parker Vacumatic was a revolutionary pen. The statement seems even more poignant today, decades later, as the pen continues to impress, for its good looks, quality of craftsmanship, the technology built into it, and, most importantly, its performance. A pen with a large, "ever-visible" ink capacity (this pen holds over 1.5 ml of ink), excellent ergonomics, and a nib to die for. It doesn't get much better than this!

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F, nib close-up showing excellent tipping geometry and alignment

If you are a person who loves to write. If you find comfort in doodling. If you enjoy your pen's company,  you're likely to fall in love with this pen. Today, we don't have to write with a fountain pen - there are several more efficient and usable modes of written communication - and yet we write a lot, we develop an emotional bond with our pens. They, in turn, give us this extraordinary sensation of being connected to our thoughts, our senses, in a unique and thoroughly satisfying manner.

This particular Vac is in excellent condition, with deep, rich, gleaming celluloid, excellent barrel transparency, fantastic gold-filled trim, and a glorious 14k gold nib. 

Parker Vacumatic Major, Golden Pearl, F, capped

The nib is smooth, but without compromising its writing ability. I tuned it to write at the lightest pressure, to lay down confident strokes in virtually any direction, and to be responsive. The nib is not flexible, but it feels soft, without feeling mushy. I cannot think of a modern gold nib that gives you that incredible ability to absorb micro-shocks coming from the surface of the paper, without disconnecting you from your writing. The tipping material is ground to a typical Fine point, producing a line of about 0.4 mm on my paper.

If you are a fountain pen enthusiast, you should try a well-tuned, restored Vacumatic. You might find it hard to go back to modern pens afterwards.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major, F Semi-Flex

(SOLD) This is a 1946 Blue Diamond Parker Vacumatic Major fountain pen in Golden Pearl celluloid, with a 14k gold Fine semi-flexible nib. The pen has been restored, which included a complete disassembly, a thorough cleaning, an overhaul of the filling mechanism, an adjustment to ink flow, 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.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major, F Semi-Flex, uncapped, showing the filling plunger

When Parker created the Vacumatic, it was truly a revolutionary pen (the phrase I wrote comes from a Parker ad). First of all, the graceful lines of the pen are not only ergonomically sound, but they are also undisturbed by any visible filling contraption such as a lever or a crescent. The filling mechanism is accessed by unscrewing the rear (blind) cap to expose a plunger mechanism. Next, we have the laminated celluloid, created by stacking up overlapping layers of clear and opaque celluloid, thus creating this timeless pattern of breathtaking beauty and great functionality. It allows you to clearly watch the pen fill and gauge remaining ink level with ease. Speaking of ink level, the Vacumatic has a huge ink capacity, easily holding up to 1.7 ml of ink. It was a lot then, and it is a lot now. Very few modern pens can boast such as large ink reservoir. Finally, there's the 14k gold nib. It's one of the best nibs ever made, in my opinion. Made in a process that's largely lost to us, the nib has an impressive ability to absorb vibrations coming from dragging the point across the paper. The nib feels soft and smooth, but without inhibiting its writing ability. The point is ground such that it writes under the lightest pressure, laying down a consistent line, regardless of stroke. Again, very few modern nibs can match this level of writing ability.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major, F Semi-Flex, nib profile, showing excellent tipping geometry and tines alignment

When I tune a vintage nib, I try to preserve its original character as much as possible. It would be easy to just polish the writing surface with Micro-Mesh, but it would alter the nib's personality and hinder its original writing ability.  If you write with a heavy hand, this nib is not for you, as the tines will spread, increasing line width and ink flow. This nib really shines when writing with a light touch, and pressing harder only to add character to your writing, a little bit of line variation. I'd rate this nib as a semi-flex, meaning that it will easily produce a line of F-BB width. However, be careful not to spring the nib. If you're used to writing with a Noodler's Ahab or Konrad, you might be tempted to press hard, but I caution you not to do that. Start by increasing pressure in very, very small increment, and you will be rewarded by a beautiful line!

Cosmetically, this is one of the nicest Vacumatics to come across my desk in a while. The gleaming celluloid is rich, deep, and vibrant. Barrel transparency is excellent, and there are not flaws or defects of any kind. The gold-filled trim is in equally great shape. A beautiful pen! It would make an awesome daily writer (except on cheap office paper), and would be a fantastic gift for a close friend or family member to celebrate a special occasion. If you do buy it for a gift, please let me know and I will include a nice box with the pen.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major, F Semi-Flex, capped. The orange tones in the barrel result from the background showing through the transparent material.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl, F

(SOLD) This is a 1943 Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major in Golden Pearl, with a 14k gold, two-tone 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 by hand. I work according to current "best practices" in pen restoration, and I use high-quality replacement materials and specialized tools.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl,  F, with the cap and blind cap off

Do you own a fountain pen that makes you feel special in some important way? A pen that you would take with you on a trip, to write an exam with, perhaps sign your marriage license? A pen with a soul? If I come across as a little corny, it's not intentional! Parker certainly felt strongly about their Vacumatic being that special pen that will "help you get the breaks." The phrase I wrote comes from a Vacumatic advertisement showing a handsome man holding aVac, smiling, and two beautiful women right beside him, also smiling. I wonder what kind of "break" the pen is getting this gentleman?

Joking aside, I think that part of the charm of a vintage pen is its provenance. A pen that's over seventy years old, made during World War II, in a tough economic and political climate, purchased by person who, most likely, has since passed away. The company's heritage, the pen's history, and its unquestionable beauty and timeless design, all contribute to the feeling of distinctiveness, significance, even mystery. I believe I just defined the pen's soul. Do you agree?

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl,  F, a nib profile showing perfect tine alignment and tipping material geometry

This particular pen is in beautiful condition, the gleaming celluloid deep, rich, vibrant. Barrel transparency is excellent; the warm tones you see in the photo are caused by the brown background showing through. You can even see the silhouette of the filling mechanism. There's just some very faint surface wear and some plating loss on the nib.

What a great writer! The Fine nib feels smooth and soft, without any skipping, hard-starts, or ink starvation. It writes a somewhat wet line that will bring out the beauty in your favorite inks and is likely to become one of your favorite performers. The nib will open up nicely if you press harder, giving you a semi-flex line. I used Sailor Kobe Old Foreigner Ward Sepia ink.

Parker Blue Diamond Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl,  F, capped

Parker Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl, XF

(SOLD) This is a 1946 Parker Vacumatic Major, Blue Diamond, in Golden Pearl celluloid with a 14k gold, two-tone 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 hand polish. I work according to current best practices in pen restoration and I use high-quality replacement materials and specialized tools.

Parker Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl, XF, with the cap and the blind cap off

Parker's Vacumatic was a huge engineering triumph. The Wisconsin company implemented an advanced filling mechanism, without disrupting the graceful lines of the pen. The Vacumatic mechanism was durable, easy to use, efficient, and held a lot of ink. This particular pen holds up to 1.7 ml of ink, nearly three times as much as a typical cartridge or converter. The large ink capacity played an important part in Parker's advertising campaigns, and this particular quote comes from an endorsement of the Vacumatic by the great Kenneth Roberts (author of Northwest Passage). Endorsement by a novelist made a lot of sense, as the pen "holds twice as much ink and shows when to refill" compared to a typical level-filler of the era. Today, pen companies often try to evoke a sense of luxury, class in their ads, but during the golden age of the fountain pen, the emphasis was on functionality. After all, people used fountain pens all day, every day, and their pens had to "just work."

This Vac is in excellent shape! The gleaming celluloid is free from any flaws or defects, barrel transparency is excellent, as is the gold-filled trim. A gorgeous pen that now can be yours, so you can enjoy long writing sessions whether you're working on your own book, traveling the world, taking notes in a meeting, or jotting down research observations in a lab.

This is a Blue Diamond pen, which means it had Parker's lifetime warranty and was, typically, better built and/or equipped than other models. This nib, for example, is a beautiful, two-tone 14k XF nib. The nib writes a self-assured, consistent XF line. It is smooth, perfectly aligned, with ample tipping material. I tuned it to write a wet but controlled line so you can enjoy your inks' color and shading. The nib has a bit of spring, but it is not a flexible nib. Sometimes, we are tempted to push harder, especially coming from modern steel flex nibs,. The "spring" is a pleasant sensation and can even give you a hint of line variation, but please, be careful as as not to spring the nib (pun not indented).

Parker Vacumatic Major Golden Pearl, XF, capped

Here, I used the amazing KWZ IG Violet #3, an iron-gall ink that darkens as it dries. You can use mostgood inks in a Vacumatic, just avoid permanent and highly saturated inks, as they might stain the celluloid and/or damage the diaphragm.