Mint pens with original price stickers
The question of whether or not to use a given vintage pen becomes particularly acute when dealing with a mint specimen bearing its original stickers. While truly pristine examples of postwar pen production are fairly easy to come by (especially the standardized mass-produced models of the '50s and '60s), mint specimens of prewar pens are real rarities.
Whether or not that rarity is adequately reflected in current market values is another matter. In our opinion, pens in top condition are still significantly underpriced. In more mature fields of collecting, the difference between near perfection and perfection can raise value by several times; in vintage pens the premium is usually but a fraction of that, often only 25-50%. This is bound to change.
At the present time, however, many shortsighted collectors still take mint pens, remove their original price stickers, and put them to use. This makes no sense, for identical pens in near-mint or excellent condition are readily available for significantly less money and, of course, once the formerly mint pen has been in use for a short time, it will be in the same condition as they are.
For those whose obsession with the work ethic extends to inanimate objects, we make this offer: if you cannot bear to keep a fine prewar pen stickered, pristine, and unused, send it to us and we will pay you good money to accept an equivalent pen in trade that has already been destickered.