This is a near mint Parker 51 fountain pen and pencil set in classic Black. The same colour on the earlier Vacumatic model was 'India Black', there must have been a reason to drop 'India', perhaps something to do with independence.
The pen is an English Parker 51 aerometric filler set dating from the third quarter of 1953. The pen is not dated but the pencil is clearly date stamped for that year.
The finish on this set is superb, it has a deep lustrous shine with no visible flaws. The 'lustralloy' caps are also in excellent condition, still retaining some frosting and totally ding free.
The set is presented in a contemporary pen pouch which is, I think, real leather and is in excellent condition. The pouch is not branded so was probably purchased as the original owner intended to carry the set around and needed some way of protecting it. Given that the set is in its sixty eighth year and is in pristine condition it appears that the pouch was a good choice.
No restoration was required but set has been fully serviced and tested. The 14Ct. Gold nib has a fine point and it lays down a smooth, firm, fine line. Parker 51 nibs are not flexible, the design of the hood prevents this.
The aerometric filling system works perfectly, taking up a good volume of ink with four presses on the filler bar.
The pencil is a 'repeater' or clutch pencil, the correct one for the set. It operates by pressing the cap to expel the lead.
The Parker 51 was so successful, and in short supply, that in the early years of English production new pens were changing hands at a much higher price than Parker's recommended retail. It was hailed as the 'best pen that Parker ever made' and is till much sought after decades later.