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Parker 51s for sale

The Parker 51 is, undoubtedly, the most successful pen ever made.  The first production pens appeared in 1941 and the Parker 51 dominated the fountain pen market until 1976, when the last pens were produced in England, American production had already ceased in 1972.

All our Parker 51 pens are fully serviced and tested.  The 51 collector, or ink governer as it was originally called, is made up of a number of very fine fins that act as a second reservoir for ink.  If a 51 has been left for a while with ink residue still in the pen this can dry and block these fins, impairing performence so a properly carried out service is essential.

There is a great deal of confusion about naming the 51 versions, but it is accepted that there are four main types.  Following David Shepherd's excellent 'Parker 51' book, I use the following scheme: 

Mk I - Vacumatics (1940 - 1948)

Mk II - Aerometric (1948 - 1969)

Mk III - Aerometric, square ended barrel, tapered 61 style cap, thin section ring, pearl cap stud (1969 - 1971)

Mk IV - Aerometric, square ended barrel, tapered 61 style cap, thick section ring, metal cap stud (1971 - 1975)

 In October 2002 Parker launched the 'Parker 51 Special Edition'.  This was, visually, a copy of the 1942 'Icicle' or 'Empire State' model made with 21st. century technology.  It retailed at $350 and met with a mixed reception from Parker 51 enthusiasts.

Twenty years later Parker produced another 51 version, the 'New Parker 51'.  It is still too early to decide on the success of this 'reimagined' 51 but the signs are not particularly good.

This collection is populated by the original Parker 51 Vacumatic and Aerometric pens.  I make no secret of the fact that, if I could only have one fountain pen for personal use it would be a Parker 51.  I think a twin jewelled Vacumatic in 'Yellowstone' would do very nicely.

                                     Find out more on our Parker 51 review

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