When I first saw the new Parker 100 last year I had mixed feelings. The Parker 51 has been one of my favorite writing instrument for many years and this new visitor appeared to have an attitude... move over cousin 51 youre a has-been and Im the new kid on the block!
Well, once in my hands for review I can say the Parker 100 is a modern compliment to the 51 yet this pen has qualities and design to make it stand quite separate and apart from anything ever produced by Parker. The design is borrowed from legend and brought to the 21st century with modern materials and technology. Slightly larger than the 51 or 61 I find it is still quite light and just as manageable as its smaller cousin. The 100 weighs in at 1.25 oz , slightly twice the weight of the 51and only .25 oz more than the smaller Sonnet. So given the slightly larger profile, the light weight makes this an almost almost identical feel in the hand.
The Parker 100 is 5 5/8 (142mm) closed and almost 6 (150mm) with cap posted. The barrel is 0.498 (12.66mm) diameter, noticeably larger than my 51s yet has a very light and comfortable fit. The satin brushed caps and striking new style clip give an appearance fit for the new generation. The clip is tight and gives a firm grip, and notably a smooth and solid fit when it is posted. The trim is 23K gold or silver-plated gold trim with a high polish finish that contrasts nicely with the matte finish of the brushed caps. The metal end jewels are a bright high polish finish, but are recessed so they would do not appear to be exposed to scratching or abrasion. I really like the appearance of the hooded nib and find a very slight flex, maybe not a part of the intentional design, but never the less we are very conscious of this performance and are able to coax a slight line variation.
The ballpoint, pencil and rollerball are almost identical in size and the feel in the hand. Each weigh in at 1.25 oz . The pencil is a twist action clutch repeater, the lead is gravity fed and stored under the eraser. The ballpoint also accepts the new gel refills.
All gold trim Parker 100 fountain pens have 18K gold nibs. All silver trim fountain pens have 18K gold rhodium-plated nibs. Parker 100 caps are finished in a shimmered gold or shimmered graphite effect, and the barrels are lacquered in a choice of five modern colors. The barrel colors are Smoke Bronze, Diamond Blue, Honey White, Opal Silver and Cobalt Black.
The filling system is either ink cartridge or ink bottle with the Deluxe piston fill converter. Fountain pen nibs are available in XF F M and B. Parker 100 fountain pens are beautifully gift boxed, and include a black velvet pen pouch.
So where does this model slot in the Parker family line up? I would say right with the vintage or modern 51 SE and the Sonnet.
Pen in hand image courtesy of Pentracer Joseph Camosy
Parker 100 pen are available from Fountain Pen Hospital
© 2004 Len Provisor.