It can be considered as best fountain pen for the money. The Vanishing point is a Quinquagenary. Yes, that is 50 years indeed. Its rettractable nib is very unique in design and still today. But let me take you back to the origins of the Pilot, the creator of Vanishing Point.
The history of the Pilot pen up to 1964
The Pilot Pen Company was founded in 1918 by Ryosuke Namiki as the Namiki Manufacturing Company.
Originally, in 1915, Mr. Namiki produced solely gold nibs for pens and not the actual pens themselves. In 1918 his company began producing writing instruments, the Pilot pen was the first brand produced by the Namiki Manufacturing Company. After 1924 the company focussed less on simple pens and start offering beautifully hand-painted pens. These hand-painted pens are known for their unfading designs and can have feminine floral designs or even Japanese samurais or dragons or anywhere in between. Namiki is most famous for what is called maki-e (lacquer work) designs. These hand-designed pens are some of the most collectible pens in the world.
In 1927 legendary English retailer Alfred H. Dunhill, best known for his tobacco pipes, smoking supplies and luxury goods, began to carry Namiki pens at the Paris store he had opened three years earlier. Dunhill soon secured the distribution rights to Namiki maki-e-decorated pens and pencils in several countries under the Dunhill Namiki label, and then in 1930 became the distributor of all Namiki products worldwide except in Japan, China, and the United States. This deal resulted in the Dunhill-Namiki pen company which later, in 1938, became known as the Pilot Pen Corporation. The Pilot Pen Corporation still has control over Namiki Manufacturing Co. today. During World War II Pilot stopped producing pens. When the war ended Pilot began producing ballpoint pens. However, Pilot did not give up on its origin of fountain pens.
Pilot pen, Vanishing Point is born: best fountain pen for the money
In 1964 they started producing a fountain pen that did not come equipped with a cap, instead the Pilot pen featured a nib that could be retracted, much like the ballpoint pens on today. This cap-less fountain pen was the Pilot Vanishing Point. The Pilot Vanishing Point was designed for ease of use. It is really a sixties product. This might contribute it is the best fountain pen for the money. Convenience came first, just like many other products designed then. Revolutionary then and unmatched to this day, this pen – besides best fountain pen for the money- was the first retractable fountain pen on the market.
Photograph by Sharada Prasad CS
This Pilot pen produces a very smooth, solid line and is exceptionally easy to write with. The Vanishing Point is five and a half inches long and the ink cartridges are removable and replaceable. The pen is designed to have a larger size body to be durable, also reason to be best fountain pen for the money.
The Vanishing Point is still produced today, but now is available with a traditional nib or with a modern ballpoint. Don Fluckinger, of RichardsPens.com, an authority in the vintage pen or collectible pen world, lists the Pilot Vanishing Point as one of the top ten modern pens.The classic fountain pen version of the Vanishing Point is offered with a fine, medium, or broad nib that is crafted from 18 karat gold. Some of the capless pens have a twisting mechanism to retract the nib and some have a more common clicking mechanism.
Pilot Vanishing Point in a variety of colors and finishings
Pilot Vanishing Point pens are available in a wide array of colors and finishes with many choices of accent colors. The Fermo collection comes in either silver, blue, or black with rhodium accents and has the twisting mechanism. The classic Vanishing Point Collection has a wide variety of colors including black, blue, yellow, red, white, chrome, brown, and raden, which is black with colored specks. This classic collection also offers gold or rhodium accents.
The design for the Pilot Vanishing Point pens, despite being continually produced for the past fifty years, has not been visibly changed since its initial production, aside from the twisting retraction piece on the Fermo collection. Using any of these Vanishing Point pens, so named for its ability to hide its own nib, will result in the user gaining a feeling of elegance and class.
This particular Pilot pen is convenient for carrying due to the retractable tip. This high quality pen is off course great to use at home or for letters but in my view, it is most handy when carried for an important signature, or even a ceremony or more general while traveling.