Every now and then a product comes along that is, to use a word, magical. The new item does something new and, in doing so, promises to “change everything”.
That’s the case with the brand new Parker 51. The Parker 51 is not like anything you have seen before. It promises to solve many of the issues that have a long plagued those of us who use a traditional fountain pen. It employs brand new technology and is a taste of the future, NOW. At least that is what Parker is telling us. Does it live up to the hype? Let’s take a closer look.
Like a pen from another planet”……..”So unique and so beautiful there is nothing to compare to it–so good it cannot be improved by any known method!”
The Parker 51 is the latest pen design from the well-known and well-regarded pen manufacturer Parker Corporation. The pen builds on their quality and expertise but the Parker the 51 has a brand-new design that promises to give it a smoother feel when writing, not blotch ink all over the place and, best still for me, work well for people who are left-handed.
Yes, the Parker 51 promises that and much more. It even works with special ink to ensure that the ink is dry almost as quickly as it is laid down on the paper. In fact, it REQUIRES this ink. That is a mark against it but then again progress always has a price.
Parker was innovative in its design with regard to the cartridge and mechanism for capturing, holding and distributing ink.
It developed the latest technology that employed a vacuum approach in recent iterations of their fountain pen. That technology now finds its way into the Parker 51 as well.
Removing the bottom cover reveals a plunger. It is this plunger that allows the user to suck ink from the bottle into the pen’s bladder where it then waits to be use. The mechanism works quite well and is certainly a cleaner and faster design than we have seen it on other pens in recent years.
The body of pen is made from a brand new material- Lucite- that is slowly finding its way into many different products. It is revolutionary in its self in that it is durable, strong and light. In addition it comes in numerous different colors which allows this had to be as much a personalized piece of art as it is a writing utensil.
What truly distinguishes this pen from all others is the nib. Fountain pen nibs haven’t seen much change in quite some time. In recent years they all take the same basic pattern. All are exposed, all have two flanges, and all allow ink to flow through the regulator and be distributed when the nib is pressed down on the paper.
At first it might look like Parker dispelled with the nib entirely. Don’t kid yourself, there is a nib on this pen. In this case, however, it has seen a degree of change that is both awesome and unexpected. You see, the nib on this pen is hidden behind a plastic cap that extends from the body of the pen. This allows the ink to flow even more smoothly than ever before and it allows the ink to dry more quickly too. It does change the feel of writing.
I found that there was an adjustment to be made when moving from the traditional fountain pens I use to using this particular pen but once that adjustment period was over Relatively quickly and I within a short time I found that I truly enjoyed using the Parker for my writing.
Finally let’s talk about the caps. The Parker 51 has a removable cap that keeps the ink from drying out.
Not content with the cap merely being a functional part of the pen, Parker set out to make it a part of the user’s individual style and taste. Pen caps come in different materials and colors ranging from chrome to gold.
They also have a blue gemstone that adds to the appeal. Put them all together and the Parker 51 says,”I’m not living in the 30’s. No, I’m living right here in the present and the 1940’s may just have begun but I’m already prepared for the 50’s. The future is coming and it is mine!”
Yes this is a brand-new innovation in writing. It has a look and style all its own and will, at least initially, get some strange looks when you first pull it out. Trust me, this is a great design advance in writing utensils and I predict that this end is going to be a huge success.
Heirloom 14kt cap and 14kt trim set $80.00, pen $50.00, pencil $30.00
Heritage Sterling cap and 14kt trim set $40.00, pen $25.00, pencil $15.00
Custom GF cap 4 alternating lines set $22.50, pen $15.00, pencil $ 7.50
Sterling cap and GF trim set $17.50, pen $12.50, pencil $ 5.00
What I Like: Looks great; ink dries fast; comes in various colors for body and cap; New technology that really makes a difference
What Needs Improvement: Requires special Parker 51 ink; Not inexpensive
All pens from my personal, albeit dusty, collection.