Here is the iconic Waterman 52 in superb, almost like new BCHR. The color on this 52 is still jet black. Chasing is beautifully crisp. The imprints pop out of the barrel. The nickel-filled trim is good condition as well. a little wear around the clip rivets. The only flaw of this pen is that the lever sticks out of the barrel just slightly. This is because the lever box is slightly raised in the middle (see pics), which likely happened when someone tried to pull the lever with a solidified ink sac in it. There are no cracks in the lever box, and of course it all looks a lot more obviously zoomed in than to the naked eye. The 14kt. Waterman #2 is delightful. It’s an XF (0.3mm), but with an italic like line variation. Just normal writing with this pen is fantastic. The flex on this nib comes easily and the responsiveness is superb. The range of flex is also superlative going from XF to BBB (1.8mm). If it weren’t for that little hump in the lever box, I’d grade this Near Mint because everything else besides is.
Here is a Waterman 5 “BROWN” in black celluloid and gold-filled trim. If you don’t know, in the late 1920s Waterman created a color code for their 5 and 7 line of pens. The 5 and 7 are essentially the replacing the 55 and 56. In the original coding “Brown” nibs were just the “Fine” nib, but around 1929 the codes changed and “Brown” became the “Fine Flex” nib. In my experience, Brown flex nibs are much more common than say the very rare “Black” flex nib, but also less common than the Red or Pink flex nib. This Waterman 5 is in good condition. There is light scratching on the body but it is still a glossy black. There is little bit of brassing on the band, but it is not significant. The clip and lever look pretty good with only light scratching. Imprints are great, and the nib matches the color on the end of the barrel. The 14kt. Waterman BROWN keyhole nib is a great nib. It is generally not quite as flexible as the Pink, but I would say better than the Red due to it being a F or what we would say is “XF.” The flex really is nice. Great responsiveness, great flow, and flexes with very little pressure from 0.3mm to BBB. Normally, it writes as a wet and smooth XF with just a hint of feedback.
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This Waterman 52 comes in the red mottled or wood grain hard rubber. The color is still very nice on this pen with only minimal fading. The gold-filled trim still looks very nice. You can obviously see it has some wear in the zoomed up pictures, but it is all much less obvious to the naked eye. Imprints on the red/black hard rubber models are really difficult to read, and this one still has imprints that definitely have some fading but in the right light and with good eyesight you can still read them. Only the globe in the center is mostly worn off. There are some very, very light teeth marks on the top of the cap. Honestly, I didn’t even see them until I noticed them in the picture. The 14kt. Waterman #2 on this pen is a gem. Many people define “wet noodle” in terms of quantity of flex (it goes BBBB++++) or ease of flex (paintbrush like), but I grade flex on quality of flex. So though this nib is very soft, it’s not uber soft. It’s something much better. It is ultra responsive, approaching dip nib kind of responsiveness. Just look at that crisp flex action in the pictures. Normally, this pen writes as a nice and smooth XXF/XF (0.25mm). It’s not glass, but you don’t expect that from an XXF. Range of flex is great going up to BBB (1.8mm with ease). The flow keeps up well, but that snap back is just spectacular. Notice the detail flex lettering done within a 5mm space! This 52 is in a beautiful, classic style. In good condition with good color, and a superb nib.
This Mabie Todd Swan is an early, turn of the century eye dropper with an ebonite over/ under feed. This Swan is about the girth of a pencil. It is in fantastic condition for a 100 plus year old pen. The color is still jet black with the original shine on the hard rubber. Chasing is good with plenty of the original texture. The imprints are also crisp and easily readable. This is a deluxe model with solid 18 kt. gold bands. The solid gold bands do have some light surface scratching as is expected being 18kt. gold. With it comes an original Swan eyedropper and pen box, though the box is not original to this pen as it’s a “Self-Filing” box. But I found the pen with this box in the “wild,” so I’ll pass it along to the buyer. Now to this wonderful juicy nib. This 14kt. Swan nib is a ultra-soft, genuine wet noodle. This is an oh so near paintbrush noodle. For normal writing, I would not recommend it. It does have a sweet spot that is smooth, but it’s not very big or forgiving. Plus, the tines separate with the slightest pressure. And it is wet like a lot of these eyedroppers. Remember, their forebearers were the dip nib, so there was wet and really wet. This is really wet. Range of flex is superb going easily from F (0.4mm) to BBB+ (1.8mm). The responsiveness for a nib this soft is impressive. For such a wet writer, it can railroad occasionally. It railroaded on me once during the writing sample, but if you did a bunch of flex as fast as you can (not recommended by the way) it will railroad. It’s a Swan in superb condition with 18kt. bands and a stellar noodle nib.
Here is a stunning Wahl-Eversharp Sapphire Ring Top. The pen is in overall beautiful condition. The gold-filled trim has minimal wear. Please remember that the pictures are ultra-zoomed and picking up flaws not detectable to the naked eye. The body still has great color, and only surface scratching typical of normal use. Additionally, this ring top is suited with a superbly soft 14kt. Wahl #3 nib. Normally, this nib writes as a XF / F (0.3mm-0.4mm). That is, with ultra light soft strokes, it’s a wet, glassy smooth XF. But add the slightest bit of pressure and the tines with split to a F. Often when tines are this soft they don’t make good normal writers, but this is soft and buttery regardless of the pressure you apply. The range of flex is wonderful going up to BBB+ (1.9mm!). The flow keeps up well, and the responsiveness is still quite good for a nib this soft. If you are looking for a pen in this size, I’m not sure what more you could ask for. It’s beautiful, superb craftsmanship, and equipped with a superior all around nib.
Here is the classic Waterman 12 in chased hard rubber with gold-filled repousse bands on the barrel. The black body has faded some to a dark brown. The chasing is in very nice condition with plenty of texture still left. The imprints still look almost new. The gold bands look untouched with very little signs of wear. The 14kt. Waterman #2 is a superb nib. Normally, it writes as soft XXF, which is fairly smooth for so fine a nib. But this nib is soft. Soft enough that normal writing needs a light hand or you will start to flex the tines. This is quite paintbrush soft, but it is nearly there. Remarkably, this nib also has very good snapback, which is not that common for so soft a nib. The range is also superb going from XXF (0.2mm) to a plentiful BBB (1.7mm).
SIZE: 5 1/4″ Capped
NIB: 14kt. Waterman #2, XXF to BBB (0.2mm-1.7mm), WET NOODLE (See “Grading Flex Nibs” for How I Grade)
Here is a nice Waterman 52 1/2 V in BCHR. The “52” means it is a lever filler. The “1/2” means it is half the diameter of the normal “52”, and the “V” stands for vest pen. That is, a short pen meant to carry in your vest pocket. The BCHR on this has faded from the original black to a dark brown. The chasing is still present though worn, and it does have some texture. The imprints are also easily readable. The gold-filled lever and ring top are in good shape with little to no brassing. The 14kt. Waterman #2 writes normally as a wet XF (0.3mm). It has a smooth sweet spot but I wouldn’t call it “glassy.” It has a pleasant bit of feedback. The flex ranges from XF (0.3mm) to a nice BB (1.5mm). It is a bit too firm for me to grade it a “super flex,” but it has some very nice responsiveness. It’s plenty good flex to do some nice work. Overall, a great little Waterman 52 1/2 V.
Here is Mabie Todd Swan model # 3161. It is a lever filler in black celluloid. The pen is in really nice condition. The body looks really good with only light surface scratching from normal use. The gold-filled trim also looks really nice with only the slightest bit of wear on the clip and lever. The section on this model threads into the body making it easy access to the sac. There just isn’t much to write about other than it looks great. The 14kt. Swan #1 is a lovely writer. It has a wet and glassy smooth flow. It is slightly stubbish and slightly oblique F which adds some character to your writing. The flex ranges from F (0.4mm) to BBB (1.7mm), which is fantastic. The flex is on the firmer side of “super flex,” but everything else (responsiveness, flow, line variation) ring all the bells for super flex. You can definitely do some great flex work with it. Overall, a lovely Swan in excellent condition.
Here is Mabie Todd Swan self-filler in wood grain hard rubber. The hard rubber is beautiful. The color has undergone very minimal fading through the years. The pen is about the size of a Waterman 52 and very similar in design. The imprints are present, but those on the side of the barrel are quite worn and difficult to read. The gold-filled trim is in nice condition as well with the exception of the lever which has some obvious plate loss along the edges. But the two bands and clip still look great. The 14kt Swan #2 is a lovely wet, soft and glassy smooth writer. It falls somewhere between a Mediuma nd Broad (0.6mm), and it is not shy about putting down some ink. The flex on this is soft and wet with some nice responsiveness for a medium nib. It has some nice range going from M/B (0.6mm) to BBB (1.7mm) with ease. Overall, just a wonderful Swan in a beautiful style.