Monday, November 22, 2010

Will write for my supper...

Saturday evening was very pleasant indeed. Good (very) food around a table with our friend, Va.

She is an excellent cook, and an even better storyteller - and they're all real-life stories of her friends, relatives, life. Much fun, laughter, the warmth you get from deep friendship (not to mention well-prepared edibles and chocolate cake).

Garage sales are among the many things Va enjoys and she has a fine eye for beauty. The "old lady's" watch - platinum and diamond encrusted - a very fine buy.

Knowing my fondness (fetish?) for fountain pens, she presented me with two. With the aid of a magnifying glass (the eyes aren't what they used to be) I was able to determine that the black one was an Esterbrook, the green (with a translucent barrel) a Recife.

The Esterbrook dates from the late 1940's and the ink bladder is still supple and holds ink.

You can see, in the photograph, the lever used to load ink. It is a very long time since I made use of such a pen.

I was able to find out from this site:, that the pen is (may be?) a J-series pen, which date from around 1948.

I checked the pen, testing it with water before ink, and it works very well. The pen is slimmer than many of the others I own, but fits well in the hand.

The nib is in excellent condition. This pen was well looked after.

I need to further investigate the Recife. It looks like a "demonstrator" pen, given the translucence of the barrel. But it has no converter, nor reservoir within, so I am not certain what to do regarding inking it. It is possible it can take a Waterman cartridge.

Below is an example of how the Esterbrook writes. It is a pleasure to use.

Many thanks, Va.


  1. Kevin,

    You know the nib screw out of these and you can interchange with other nibs - that's the really cool part about Esterbrooks and Pelikans - there are a few others too.

  2. Owwwww! I love fountain pens too although I don't own any that nice. How sweet of your friend to give you those.

    I save my special fountain pens for special occasions and special events. I have one parker pen that I've used in every test and every exam since high school. It's my good luck charm.


  3. @Julie I didn't know, Julie - not about the Esterbrooks, the Pelikans yes.

    That's something I'll look into for this one. I really like how it behaves on the page. Color me really happy. :)

  4. @Jai I love fountain pens because they are functional works of art. I have two Parkers - Sonnets both.

    Hey, I love poetry - how could I not have a pen with such a name!

  5. You should follow Julie (Okami) on twitter and her blog, if you're not already. She is one ultimate pen enthusiast! I write with a mechanical pencil... *cough*

  6. Hi Laura, I have Julie's blog in my Google Reader (fed to my iPad) and I also follow her tweets. There is a real risk to my bank account doing that - but, what the heck... :)

    A mechanical pencil...does that mean it writes by itself? :D

  7. A mechanical pencil...does that mean it writes by itself? :D

    It does sometimes...but what it writes is very scary... ;)

  8. I hope that you and yours will enjoy a wonderful Thanksgiving, Kevin!

  9. Thanks Laura. My best to you and yours for Thanksgiving. A truly blessed holiday.