Monday, January 25, 2010

An email with a Vacumatic question

This email arrived today:

Hello David,

Is it possible for  a 2d. generation 'Made in Canada' Burgundy Pearl Senior Max. to be correct with 2 black jewels?

Your assistance is appreciated,


It is... unlikely, though always hard to have absolutes, especially for Canadian pens.

USA Pens by mid 1939 all at first glance seem to have black bottom jewel, which really is not that. Rather it is a pseudojewel actually with target pattern, as by this time Parker no longer (in USA) made true bottom jewel with removable tassie, instead cutting the blind cap to a point to look like a jewel and press fitting a tassie over that.  In good light the blind cap fake jewel shows concentric target stripes just as if you looked edge on to smooth later blind cap.

USA high line pens had striped top jewel still (except blue of course) through mid 1942, so all 2nd gen pens through 1941 should have matching top jewel on high line pen.

It is not clear that Canada ever went to the pseudojewel. I have seen late 1941 pens and even early 1942 double jewel pens from there with removable bottom jewel.  Most Canadian pens I see, even late 1941 have striped/matching top jewel. But, again I have seen even early 1942 Double Jewel pens from Canada (unlike USA) and sometimes they have black jewels both ends, even on high line pens.

I'd be curious about your pen's date code, but generally if before 1942, a matching jewel on top (and probably both jewels for Canadian pens) would be expected... at least to some degree.

That the pen is Canadian removes some of the sting from the lack of matching jewels, because unlike pens from USA, particularly for late issue double jewel pens, the rules are a bit less clear.

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