Collecting Vintage Conway Stewart Pens

Collecting Conway Stewart pens can be a very demanding, but ultimately rewarding challenge. The numbering system used for their models is unlike that of any other major pen manufacturer. Normally model numbers relate to the various aspects of that individual model: size, filling system, or nib size.

The advertising of Conway Stewart shows that model numbers were issued without any real order. Many times, the same model was designated with two different numbers, depending upon whether it was sold for the domestic market, or for export.

For the enthusiasts, this can make identifying any given Conway Stewart model very demanding. The pens can be defined mainly into two groups: "early pens" and the later celluloid pens. Both groups have their adherents among collectors, and many simply choose to collect both!

The early pens, made of hard rubber, can be more of an adventure. It is important to remember that the Conway Stewart pens were marketed as being "everyday" writers. Thus, the original owners used them everyday. After ten, twenty, or thirty years of constant, everyday use, can leave an impression on even the best made of pens!

Searching for an original Duro lever filler in mottled hard rubber in mint condition can be quite a quest and will not be as easy as locating some of the later pens. As with all vintage pens, the larger models will be more expensive and difficult to find than the smaller models. A large Duro such as that pictured here can require quite an investment in both time and money to add to your collection.

Of course, it's not necessarily a simple task to compile a complete collection of the later production pens. Some of the celluloids are very rare today, and command a premium price.

The Herringbone patterns, in Green, Red, and Blue, for example, are considered to be quite desirable. Others however, can be easier to locate, and allow the collector the opportunity to enjoy vintage Conway Stewarts at an entry-level price.

Given that the nibs available on these pens from the late 1940s and 1950s are every bit as good as those found on the earlier Conway Stewarts, if you're looking for a collection that also serves for daily use, these later pens can be the ideal choice.

My personal favorites of their signature celluloids are the Herringbone in every color; Mottled hard rubber in Red and Black; Black lined Olive Green; Floral and of course, the famous Cracked Ice. Once you begin collecting Conway Stewarts, I am sure you will find your own favorites!

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