Vintage Pilot Fountain Pens
Like Sailor, Pilot started making pens in Japan in the early area of the twentieth century. Creator Ryosuki Namiki began in 1915 making gold nibs, but by 1918 his Namiki production Company, Ltd. ended up being churning on writing instruments—Pilot had been its first brand.
In 1924 the organization ended focusing solely on pen production and expanded its repertoire to include lacquering and hand-painted pencils, labeled as Maki’e. The designs, which are known for their particular longevity and stubborn refusal to diminish, ranged from quiet yard views to depictions of samurai soldiers and dragons. The exquisite information put into every pen tends to make these some of the priciest collectible pencils in the world.
The richly lacquered figures among these very early Pilot pens set all of them apart from their rivals by the belated 1920s, Pilot pens had been on the market worldwide. In 1930, Namiki signed an advertising deal with Alfred Dunhill, a British pen distributor. Subsequent vintage pens made between 1930 and 1940 and marketed by Dunhill are named Dunhill-Namiki pencils. Like its Pilot predecessors, the Maki’e pens will be the most collectible Dunhill-Namikis, whether the nibs have been in sizes from 1 to 6, 20, as well as 50.
Dunhill-Namiki also made a small amount of celluloid pens, which are extremely rare—some enthusiasts don’t even understand they exist. After that, in 1938, the company became known as the Pilot Pen Corporation, and Pilot continues to control Namiki even today.
Utilizing the outbreak of World War II, Japan therefore the great britain became belligerents, and Dunhill-Namiki halted pen manufacturing. After the war, in 1961, ballpoints entered the Pilot manufacturer product line, but Pilot would not forsake its fountain-pen roots—its Cap-less water feature pen from 1964 featured a retractable nib.
These days, Pilot creates rollerball pencils, needlepoint pens, and technical pencils, with Namiki as a subsidiary that creates high-end writing implements. It's even reestablished its relationship with Dunhill, releasing a limited-edition collection of Dunhill-Namikis in 1996.
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