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Sheaffer Touchdown Tuckaway Question.


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#1 david i

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 05:04 AM

We recently had a multipage thread about Sheaffer's 1940-1951 Tuckaway series short pens characterized by frantic evolution and by nomenclature that only sometimes reflected the full-length pens to which they were connected.

You can see that thread (link take you to page-2, which has the "final" list showing dozens of models)

http://fountainpenbo...me/page__st__20

The Tuckaway series was in its waning days in 1949 when Sheaffer released Touchdown pens, replacing the plunger filler that dominated the last decade. A key change for Touchdown in general was the blending of the full length Sovereign and Statesman models from the prior years into Touchdown's Statesman model with elimination of the Sovereign. Sovereign had been an open nib pen $8.75 same size as the Triumph nib $10 Statesman. But, for 1949-1950 during the Touchdown era, only one pen was produced, with open nib like Sovereign, but with $10 price and with Statesman name. The Touchdown Statesman was longer than the earlier Sovereign and Statesman pens.

The short Tucky versions of these pens followed similar course. What should be a "Statesman Tuckaway" in 1948 had name just Tuckaway, itself having switched name from the prior 1945-7 Tuckaway II. What might have been better named "Sovereign Tuckaway" in 1948 actually had name Lady Sheaffer (yeah, Lady Sheaffer, not Lady Tuckaway)

In 1949 the Tuckaway that reflected the full length Statesman (itself a blend of prior Statesman and Sovereign), kept the name Tuckaway. Makes sense. The Statesman and Tuckaway were parallel names for the long and short versions of 1948, and the fusion of styles in 1949 took the name and price of the more expensive model.

So, some of the Tuckaway models (model, not the whole series of same name) have bigger nibs than others, some hitting about the size of earlier oversized Balance, making for a massive nib in a stubby pen. But others have smaller nib.

When i noticed this in passing, I'd wondered if I was comparing accidentally injection-plastic Touchdown 1949-50 pens to similar looking Lady Tuckaway from 1948. But, not. Recently I pulled a few pens. All are Touchdown, thus 1949-50. Seem to have same name when tags and stickers found.

So... anyone care to explain why the 1949-50 Tuckaway, proper, (short equivalent to Statesman), turns up with different size nibs?

Here is a pair of 1949-50 TD Tuckaways for comparison. Green pen has well more massive nib.

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regards

David
David R. Isaacson MD. Website: VACUMANIA.com for quality old pens with full warranty.
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#2 gregamckinney

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 04:50 PM

All the examples (6) in my collection have the larger nib of the two you show.

Was there anything going on at this time with styles of nibs being introduced or phased out that might explain the variance on this model?

Regards, greg

#3 Sam Marshall

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 06:53 PM

David,

This is one of the confusing things about collecting Sheaffer. Both of these pens are called Tuckaway, but they are two different models. There is no clear documentation on how there two models relate.

The Green pen is a model 82 SM Tuckaway and is the model shown in the "Sheaffer's 1949 Line" publication sent to dealers. It has the #8 Sheaffer nib, same as Oversize balances--the 1939-1941 Premier for example.

The Blue pen is a model 74 SM Tuckaway and, was to the best of my knowledge and belief, a 1950 or 1951 replacement. It has the #74 Sheaffer nib same as on the 1939-1941 Statesman along with many more.

Both pens are shown in a 1951 publication and both show a list price of $10.00. I do not know if both were marketed at the same time or if the 74 SW was a replacement with a smaller nib to keep Sheaffer's profit margin up. If I had to bet, the 74 SM replaced the 82 SM to keep the pen at a $10.00 price point.
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#4 david i

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 07:13 PM

Thanks Sam,

The different model codes are helpful, and your thesis makes sense.

Only caveat I'd toss in is that the nibs, while seeming to be the sizes of older nibs, do not have the markings of the 1930's nibs. The big boy is not marked "Lifetime", the smaller neither "Lifetime" nor "Feather Touch".

best regards

David
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Email: isaacson@frontiernet.net

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#5 PatM

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 09:55 PM

David -

On the basis of a quick look through some bags of Tuckaways - not the trays I posted earlier - I came up with these PFs that have virtually the identical nibs to the TD versions with which you started this thread.

My shot isn't the best but the pen on the left has the large flat nib and the nib in the pen on the right has a smaller 2-tone nib but most of the plating has been worn/polished off the top portion (probably the reason I had it in a bag).

An interesting note on these as compared to your TDs is that the WD version has the larger nib and the non-WD version the smaller.

Best,
Pat
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#6 matt

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 10:13 PM

Pat,

The pen with the smaller nib appears to have an 875 price code. Is there a code on the pen with the bigger nib?

#7 david i

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 10:36 PM

David -

On the basis of a quick look through some bags of Tuckaways - not the trays I posted earlier - I came up with these PFs that have virtually the identical nibs to the TD versions with which you started this thread.

My shot isn't the best but the pen on the left has the large flat nib and the nib in the pen on the right has a smaller 2-tone nib but most of the plating has been worn/polished off the top portion (probably the reason I had it in a bag).

An interesting note on these as compared to your TDs is that the WD version has the larger nib and the non-WD version the smaller.

Best,
Pat
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Hi Pat,

Bit swamped right now, and will chime in again a bit later I hope, but I wonder if pen on left is cap-swap, though I'll toss caveat.

Best I know, the plunger fill, forticel (injection plastic) 1948 pens have white dot cap on Statesman (triumph nib, $10) and equivalent Tucky, and no white dot on Sovereign (open nib $8.75) and quivalent tucky.

In 1949 the Touchdown line blended the two models into one pen, still named Statesman for the long pen, open nib as had the older Sovereign (though maybe not same size), but with name, price point ($10) and white dot of the higher line Statesman.

Your pen on left looks like a Sovereign with a Statesman cap.

Now... to challenge myself... "Well, David, how do you know the blending of the 1948 Statesman and Sovereign occurred in 1949. Could it not have take place late 1948, still plunger fill era, after the 1948 catalogue was released???"

Yeah, never easy. BUT, if that happened, I'd expect a $10 on the open nib pen on left. It would-- if not a mix-- be a uncatalogued (?) 1948 open-nib Statesman-equivalent tucky, something believed not to have developed until the 1949 Touchdown era.

Counter views are invited. This subject continues to give me headache.

best regards

David
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Email: isaacson@frontiernet.net

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#8 PatM

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 08:22 PM

David -

On a closer inspection, I would venture that if either cap was switched, it had to be done close to birth since the overall color and patina on each match so well. I haven't had a chance to wander back through other Tuckaways. Will do so soon.

Best,
Pat




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