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Mrs-ish mconlonx recently rediscovered these two beauties, which we grabbed while cleaning out her grandmother's house.

20191127_061432_1574877278438.jpg

The one on the left is an Eversharp with lever ink refiller, and on the right is a Parker with some kind of mechanism under the cap on the back end.

I like watches but I am totally out of my league with pens.

Someone tell me I have the equivalent of an OG Rolex GMT Masrer-I here...
 

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Nothing that good but a couple nice pieces.

The Eversharp is a Skyline, in one of the more common configurations...burgundy with GF cap. Nice pen from the 40's, altho not a personal favorite. The shape's a tad odd...and with the GF caps, they don't balance well posted, IMO.

The Parker is a Big Red Duofold from the late 20s, looks like. It's a button filler; press the button, sac gets squeezed a bit, draws in some ink. Takes a fair number of presses to fill.

Both are fairly common, made in significant numbers, but also iconic pens for their day. Both are well worth sending in for a thorough cleaning, almost certain re-sac, and probably a bit of polishing up on the lever box and button filler.
 
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Lovely
I am huge fan of the Big Red and have used them for years - amazing when you think they are 80+ years old
Is there any writing on the side still visible? You can put a little powdered chalk/talc on it, blow it off and it will sit in the stamping and make it legible
does it say Lucky curve? USA? Canada?

I think the Big Red is the equivalent of the Rolex sub - only worth 1/100th the value
 

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I think the Big Red is the equivalent of the Rolex sub - only worth 1/100th the value
Wouldn't go that far. If they're in really good shape, they're worth a fair bit...but if mostly worn imprints, they're just very common. Even in period, you're competing against Balances, Waterman 5x and 9x, and the 5 and 7 are around the same period with the colored nibs. Parker nibs are sound but not, IMO, particularly better than, say, Sheaffer or Waterman's non-flex nibs. (Flex nibs...different story, but also different price bracket.)
 
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Fair point - although they are actually very uncommon in the UK - I was actually thinking in terms of original marketing strategy with both priced just outside what folk would justify on such items - so though both were not real 'luxury' both were/are very aspirational - also both garnered social cache & cult status - the Rolex is an icon and the Big red was an icon - most people now recognise a Rolex, back in 1930 in the USA most would recognise the Big Red.

I prefer the vintage Waterman's and have many - I think they were often better made than parker, and agree their nibs are superb - I have a magnificent 100yr oversize writer; a sublime flexy red ripple no7, and gone but not forgotten, a legendary turquoise n gold Patrician which I used to write with but flipped in a trade for a very rare couple of Conway Stewarts, my main collecting field.
 
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A Senior Duofold, from what I can find online, ran $7 at intro. Waterman's Cardinal Red...which was a bit of a premium...the 54-size shows as $4.50, in a catalog at archive.org. Sheaffer Balance was a tad later...end of the 20s to 30s...but they were 9 and 10. Somewhat surprisingly, the Patrician was only $10.

So the Duofold was in line with the other name brands' premium pens. I wouldn't equate any of these with a Rolex of today; the premium on Rolexes has just skied. A Duofold was, what, 5-7x the cost of a Wearever...but a Rolex is 15x the cost of a Hamilton. And I'd argue a Wearever is closer to a Seiko 5 than a Hamilton...in which case the comparison is that much worse. There's plenty of solid watches out there for around, say, 1000...my Ming 17.06 Copper was 1250, IIRC. A Rolex OP 39 gray market is still 5K...and a Sub *starts* at 10K. So, the Duofold's premium amounted to a few hours of work...but a Rolex would be measured in weeks.
 

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I was not comparing as equivalent the Parker Big Red with a Rolex Sub per se. I was comparing them by analogy of proportionality - what they represented. Both the Parker Duofold Big Red then (and one might say a modern Duofold today) and Rolex Sub (from the 1950s to date) are veblen goods, both priced extravagantly above what is deemed normally acceptable to pay for a decent pen or decent watch. Both are iconic, both trend setters & widely copied, both aspirational items, objects of desire and symbols of wealth or achievement.

When the Duofold was launched in 1921 America was in the middle of the worst depression she'd known; in 1921 unemployment had jumped from 5% in 1920 to 9%; in 1921 - farmers were earning less than 2 dollars a day. A fountain pen that cost $7 seemed absurd and even indecent.

According to the Bible of fountain pens, Lambrou's Fountain Pens of the World, 'At that time (1921) almost all pens were black, selling at around $2.75. Lewis M Tebbel, one of Parker's branch managers had a revolutionary idea for a new pen: it would be of considerable size, with a large ink capacity, a big gold nib and produced from a vivid red-orange material...such a pen would sell for about $7 - more than twice the generally accepted price. The proposal met with considerable skepticism from the Parker management but Tebbel persisted, pointing out that although times were hard (America was in the middle of its economic
Depression 1920-21) there were plenty of new expensive cars on the road (some sources say Tebbel took managers to the roof of the building and pointed out all the Cadillacs) indicating that people could find and were willing to pay the money if they wanted...'

He was proved right - a great product, with canny marketing, priced high to increase desire, sales shot through the roof and made the Big Red a coveted legend. Much like the sub! Competitors Waterman, Sheaffer, Conklin, LeBoeuf all played catch up and would offer some exceptional pens, some better than the Big red, but nothing could match perception n market share of Parker's mighty big red
 
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