Parker Vacumatics are undeniably popular pens. Collectors prowl flea markets, pen boards and eBay hoping to score uncommon variants. Like this one.
The Long Major size is not so easily found. They do turn up but you have to look around a bit. Silver pearl is not a rare color, but finding one with clean white trim is another matter as the nickel bits, once tarnished, are almost impossible to restore.
This one saw light in the second quarter of 1939. For a 74-year old pen, it is in great shape. The celluloid remains glossy and its transparency is excellent for its age. This striped splendor makes it easy to understand why these celluloid marvels become obsessions for collectors worldwide.
Its genteel appearance hides a secret – a two-toned factory stub. Most Vacs came in Fine. Stubs accounted for less than one per hundred Vacumatics made, giving this one added cachet. It has some bite to it and is particular about how it is held to the page. Once its sweet spot is learned though, it’ll shake its moneymaker all night long.
I am told Mike Masuyama tweaked the flow on this one, so it does not suffer the dryness common to Vacs. It is a slick writer which I can still use for meeting notes without consuming a small forest’s worth of paper.
What truly bestows immeasurable value on this pen is its provenance: it was a birthday gift from my best-est friend. When your significant other is also your Number 1 enabler, epic surprises like this make you weak-kneed and sentimental.