18 May 2013

Pilot's Safety

This is not the first time we see a safety pen on these Chronicles. During the early days of Namiki Mfg. Co. five filling systems were implemented in Pilot pens—the O-shiki (O-式, eyedropper filler with shut-off valve), the T-shiki (T-式, lever-filler), the N-shiki (N-式, hoshiawase), P-shiki (P-式, plunger filler) and the L-shiki, (L-式) the retractable-nib safety system shown today.

The hoshiawase system is the only original innovation by Pilot at the time, The rest of systems were copied from Western products (plunger filler, lever filler and safety), or from other Japanese companies –Maruzen had marketed and manufactured eyedroppers with shut—off valve derived from Onoto’s plunger fillers around 1910, and on these Chronicles I already showed a Japanese Swan with that same system from ca. 1915.

Other Japanese companies made safety pens—Sailor, Platinum, SSS, Itoya…—, but they are hard to find nowadays, and that makes these finds all the more valuable. This safety pen in particular is in immaculate condition—most likely, it was never inked. The decoration and imprints on the black ebonite barrel look like fresh out of the production line.

The pen sports a replacement nib. It is a very flexible unit, made in 1930, of size 3 in 14 K gold labeled as steno (for shorthand writing). It is perfectly identified as made by Pilot, as has always been the case with Pilot and Namiki nibs. The barrel, on its side, carries the brand and the company names: “PILOT / NAMIKI MFG: CO. / MADE IN JAPAN”. The production date is around 1925.

The imprint on the nib reads as follows: "STENO / 14 KARAT GOLD / PILOT / REGISTERED / -3-".

These are its dimensions.
Length capped: 118 mm
Length open (nib extended): 124 mm
Length posted (nib extended): 151 mm
Diameter: 12 mm
Weight (dry): 13.7 g

My thanks to Mr. Sugimoto.

Platinum 3776 Century, music nib – Platinum Pigmented Blue

Bruno Taut
Shinjuku, May 16th, 2013
etiquetas: Pilot, soluciones técnicas, Japón

NOTE ADDED ON MAY 22nd: The nib is not original. The replacement nib shown on the pictures was made in 1930. My thanks, once again, to Mr. Sugimoto.


SUGIMOTO said...


このニブは オリジナルでは ありません。
STENO・ニブは 昭和5年=1930年

Bruno Taut said...



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