First year pen with imprint by bottom tassie, metal filler unit, metal bottom jewel, clip with large diamond and reverse negative imprint, and cap with double-border cartouche. There is a large oval mark on blind cap (visible in pic) that appears to be a filled large deep scratch. Cap has no dings and withour brassing, but appears to have two sets of the 4-line clusters worn away (they are lightly stamped in this style). Double Jewel "51" pens feature end screws ("jewels") at both top and bottom of the pen. Yellowstone is one of the three high-cachet vac-era "51" colors. This one is one of those "Would be excellent except for..." pens. Wish I could hand this pen to the various restorers next time I drop off 50 "51" pens and say, "Just make 'em all write like this". I don't know if it is just patina or represents a rose-gold-filled cap. I'm still trying to figure if this is an era-specific finding or random batch variation (or differential fading, or...), but I have been leaning of late toward considering early pens to have this reddish cast and later pens more of the brown color. The Double Jewel Parker '51' perhaps is amongst the most collectable vintage pens. Clusters of converging lines can be found for the cap pattern. The imprint is faint, probably polished at one point. The celluloid pencil (vs acrylic pen) shows typical greening of color. BLIND JEWEL AND TASSIE appear to be aftermarket replacements- likely Ariel's material. Bottom Tassie is solid 14k (probably an old swap) as these usually associate with solid gold clip, which is not present. Wet fine-medium line The Heritage Cap is an up-cachet gold-filled cap, especially when found (it could be had either way) with solid gold trim. Very late 1941 and very early 1942 pens have a single line imprint by the clutch, which gave way to the far more prevalent two-line imprint soon after. For single jewel "51" with sterling cap, the condition of that lined silver cap drives value. The sort of pen that shows why- back in the day- basic 51" sold well. Beautiful pen with quite smooth point, especially for such a fine nib. Rhodium plating intact save for areas at very bottom below the deco band. Nice eye appeal with bright white cap, at some discount from price with an "eye popping" sterling cap. A basic standard size vac-fill era, showing in nice shape. The sort of pen that shows why- back in the day- basic 51" sold well. The wide-lip cap is the less common of the two 1948 "early Aero era" caps. Iridium looks broad to my eye, but the line put down by the pen is medium. While most- contrary to myth- do need some degree of restoration when found in the wild, the Aerometric pens are more likely at least still to fill and write than are most other vintage self-filling pens. And, that might be so, depending on some of hte nuances of "introduction". The presence of the Parker halo suggests post 1957 production though it could be well later. Nib looks to be Octanium The thread sleeve inside the metal barrel was loose when I acquired the pen. The barrel has a couple significant tooth marks Probably could be filled, but i've opted to let it go as is. This set has superb cap frost on the pen and quite nice frost on the pencil. The chrome filling unit has some flaking, not uncommon. Very smooth medium point (on the fine side of medium, but makes the Medium grade to my eye). Despite the Demi status, not a tiny pen, as long as the prior Parker Vacumatic Major and bit thinner. Couple (literally) pin marks to cap, no frank dings. The Special was the "affordable" Parker "51" with it's 1950's introduction. Halo logo on pen dates it, i suspect, to after 1957. This one is mint with original price/nib-grade tag.
The tassie (blind cap ring) has some nicks and dings. The blind cap is fitted with a gold-filled or gold tassie (trim ring), instead of being smooth, as for Single Jewel pens. The blind cap is a bit short relative to most "51" blind caps and (thus? Some pens are destined to be better writers than others. The blind cap ring (tassie) has the "typica" mm or so of high point brassing on the main step. Pencil works; I tossed couple leads in the storage slot under the eraser. Something of a bonus as the value of the solid 14k tassie is well more than that of the usual gold-filled tassie. This imprint actually is less common than the the typical First Year imprint. "T7" imprint indicates USA production with Canadian plastic in 1947. Most are heavily dinged with lost rhodium plating, etc. The coin silver (90% silver) cap is less common than the sterling caps though still not a "rare" cap. The rhodium plating is gone by the bottom of hte cap, showing the underlying silver, and is partially present on remainder of the cap. For single jewel "51" with sterling cap, the condition of that lined silver cap drives value. Black plastic is clean, sporting a two tone clutch ring. 1-2mm high by several mm wide bit of brassing at bottom of cap (opposite side from clip). With the exception of the all-metal Signet, Flighter and Presidential models, the plain old "Aero" long has run second fiddle to the Vac-fill era pens. The one-squeeze filling action also is popular with writers. Excellent metal with no dings, Pencil has bit of high point brassing (you can see it at very top edge of clip). Pen slightly later (consistent with mythology that pencils took longer to sell back in the day). Still, the pen in this set packs a late 1948 date code. Pen grades near mint, with clear sac and wisp of ink emerging on water testing. It's 1948 imprint makes it a "first year" Aero, not that most people really care. It's 1948 imprint makes it a "first year" Aero, not that most people really care. Internal chrome filler unit with some wear to the chrome. 1948 date code makes it a "first year" Aerometric, not that any one cares so much. Pen has sharp barrel imprin and nice chrome "Press Six Times" filling unit. This one is proper with black top jewel, "special" filler and Octanium nib. Water testing shows a wisp of ink so pen has been dipped. The Mark III "51", final form for this venerable series, was produced for about three years around 1970 (yes...
Cap has no brassing and no dings; one or two tiny pin marks. T-7 imprint believed to indicate assembly in USA from Canadian plastic. I have flushed the front end since i took the photo, so the hood now is quite clear too. Shipping starts at about $9 insured in USA and ranges up with price of pen.
Jump to summary chart For those of us concerned with when a pen was made, Parker is the sweetest of all makers, in that many of their pen actually have a date printed right on them.
Friend, neighbor and well respected restorer of old pens, Ron-- in order to accomodate a large portion of these pens, which could have set his usual queue back by a month-- let me drop by on multiple evenings so he could do overtime to get many of these done, while still providing timely service to... If you happen to have pens needing repair, do give these guys a yell. Produced merely two years and released in small numbers, the "red band" Parker "51" pens from 1946-1947 are items of high cachet.
Discontinued due to challenges repairing them, today they are quite scarce. Introduced in 1947, the Demi essentially is a one year model, thus markedly less common than either Demi Aerometric or the single jewel standard size pen.
Nassau is the most highly sought and scarce amongst the regular production colors from the vac-fill era. First year variants of this cap have double-border. Gives a nicely shaded stub-like experience even used by right handed writers (as am I). Cap has no brassing or dings but has scattered pin sized bubbles just near the clip. Tassie (bottom ring) has "typical" brassing at edges of the steps. Blind cap has earlier metal jewel (save it as bonus for future swap if you get a first year pen with plastic jewel). The cap is free of significant dings, but has numerous light nicks and has no rhodium plating, though the warm silver looks nice. Lustraloy cap extremely clean, fully refrosted during restoration. Cap has no dings but has numerous scattered pin marks, some clustered. T-7 imprint believed to indicate sanctioned USA assembly with Canadian plastic parts, in 1947 of course. The final forms of the pen, Mark II and Mark III, at first glance appear more like some of those other pens than they do "51" proper. Pen has long clip (early style), "press 4 times" brushed filling unit, and unimprinted barrel. Pen appears unfilled but gives wisp of ink on water testing, so at least was dipped. Just an example of some of the modern artistry available out there for the dedicated "51" collector.