Monday, February 12, 2007

I Like the Cut of Your Nib, Sailor

I don't think I've made much of a secret how much I enjoy using Sailor pens. In fact, because I like the way they perform so much, when I opened the Pear Tree Pen Company, Sailor was the very first pen line I signed up with.

There does seem to be a little bit of confusion regarding this brand, however, and one of my customers recently wrote me, stating "Also, am considering a Sailor pen. I must admit I am confused about this line of FPs. Have heard they come in piston filler, but never seen them. Also, some seem to have the anchor logo, some don't. Some are medium, some are full, some are "older design.

Can you tell me what you have available in black, clarifying the above?"

I guess he liked my response, and he encouraged me to post it, figuring others may be equally confused. So, here it is, with some minor modifications. :)


To celebrate its 95th anniversary, Sailor made a limited edition pen, called the Realo. That was Sailor's first and only piston-filler, and it was limited to 600 units (500 for the Asian market, numbered xxx/500, and 100 for the European and North American market, numbered xxx/100), all of which are sold out (at least on the retail level).

The Realo is based on Sailor's King of Pen. Primary differences included the filling system (Realo is piston-filled, K.O.P. is cartridge/converter), and material (Realo is resin, K.O.P. is ebonite). The Realo also had gold trim, whereas the K.O.P. is generally unadorned.

The full-size 1911 pens with the anchor logo on the cap were imported into the US before 2006. In early 2006, Sailor's US distributor split up, and there was a 2-3 month period where it was almost impossible to get a 1911 here in the States. From what I've been told, only the US-imported 1911s had the anchor logo on them (they also had a "blind cap" that matched the barrel color). In an effort to stave off a price increase, the new US distributor and Sailor agreed to produce the same 1911 around the world, rather than have a slightly different pen in the US market. As a result, the end caps are now universally black, and the anchor logo on the cap has also been replaced with a black domed cap, giving an overall torpedo-like shape. The other change to the design involves the trim ring - in previous iterations, there was a metal trim ring at the end of the section nearest the nib. The new edition has a thinner trim ring moved up on the section and is now situated just below the barrel threads.

At that time, Sailor also discontinued the burgundy and green version of the 1911.

There is also a smaller version of the 1911 that is available, called the 1911M (for mid-sized). It used to be known as the "colors" series pens, but that doesn't fit anymore, since the full-size 1911 is now available in the same colors. The full-size 1911 (or FS) has a 21K gold nib that 's somewhat larger than that on the M. The M's nib is 14K gold. The M is shorter in length and smaller in circumference than its larger sibling.

They come in the same colors -- Red, Blue, Yellow and the clear Demonstrator. In the full-size, black is also available, but black isn't offered in the M-sized version. The black version comes in either gold-plated or rhodium trim. Both are in stock.

Also, the M doesn't have a zoom nib or a medium-fine. In the FS version, the demonstrator is also available in gold or rhodium trim, but the M's demonstrator is only available in gold.

I have the black 1911 FS in black in all nib sizes - EF, F, MF, M, Music and Zoom. I don't have any broad nibs in stock, but they can be ordered and delivered very quickly if necessary.


I think that about covers it.

Let me know if you have ay more questions and I'll do my best to answer them."

I hope that was helpful and thanks for stopping by!


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