There are many fine fountain pens being made today. Writing quality does not always correlate with price, however, and don't forget that a skilled pensmith can do wonders, making scratchy nibs smooth and dry writers wet. Sellers that offer such services deserve your patronage!
Brand preference is highly personal. If you want to hear what other pen fanciers recommend, check out the chat on the various online pen forums. While most pen magazines are good at covering new releases, in-depth critical reviews are best sought elsewhere.
Though vintage and antique writing equipment is our main focus, we are often asked about more recent fountain pens. At the moment, our new-pen offerings are largely limited to the assorted closeouts on our Specials page and the miscellaneous post-1975 offerings listed below.
7552: Parker 180 Flighter: stainless steel cap and barrel, gold plated trim, US-made, includes Aerometric-style slender convertor, 14K gold two-way triangular nib (offers two nib grades in one, with a thinner line when the nib is used inverted); new old stock with original clip tag, several available.
7357: Parker 180 Guirland: gold-plated, made in France, two-way flat gold nib, feed marked "X/M"; one of the less common patterns of one of Parker's lower-production pens; new old stock, includes convertor.
11087: Parker 180 Imperial rollerball: gold plated cap, barrel, and trim, grouped parallel lines pattern; US-made, new old stock but no box or packaging, date code "AI"; a few available.
11072: Parker 180 Ms. Parker ballpoint in box: brushed stainless steel with gold plated trim, bold barrel band; 13.1 cm long, clipless, designed by Emilio Pucci, takes standard Parker refills; made in USA, includes leatherette sleeve, instruction sheet is dated 1979.
11077: Parker 180 Ms. Parker rollerball in box: brushed stainless steel with gold plated trim, bold barrel band; 13.1 cm long, clipless, designed by Emilio Pucci, takes standard Parker refills; made in USA, "QC" date code, includes leatherette sleeve.
7154: Parker 35 Flighter fiber tip: unusual model, made in France for the French market, stainless steel cap and barrel, gold plated trim, 12.7 cm long; new old stock, black plastic grip section; fiber tip refills no longer available, but includes custom-made adaptor permitting use of refills taken from BIC ballpoints.
10691: Parker 35 Guirland fiber tip: gold plated, one of the less common patterns, made in France, a model not originally distributed outside Europe. Condition is excellent but for two areas of plating loss at the cap rim (see detail), which appear to be a manufacturing defect rather than from wear. Fiber-tip refills no longer available, an adapter is included that permits use of refills taken from BIC ballpoints.
10266: Parker 4-color Flighter ballpoint: brushed stainless steel cap and barrel, 12.9 cm long with tip out, 13.2 with tip in, gold plated trim, 45-style clip; uncommon model, made in Germany, color selected by holding pen level with matching colored arrow upwards when operating cap mechanism; uses standard mini refills, condition a bit rough with bumps and tool marks at ends, mechanism works fine though a bit sticky if colored arrow not lined up precisely to vertical.
9498: Parker 75 ballpoint: burgundy plastic barrel with gold plated cap and trim, black cabochon clip button; no imprints, a known test market/prototype model.
7650: Parker 75 ballpoint manufacturing display: five pieces in sterling silver illustrating different stages of forming a cap, deep-drawing from sheet; the last stage is at final dimensions with the top hole cut, but before application of the imprints and engine turning; from Parker's Janesville factory.
11041: Parker 75 Damier: rare and desirable pattern in sterling silver, made in France, full French hallmarks, smooth-writing "M" 18K nib.
10771: Parker 75 Florence: two-tone vermeil, gold over solid sterling silver, cabochon in clip top; made in France for the Italian market, French and Italian hallmarks plus Italian serial number on side of section. USA 14K nib, section ring with angle indicator lines, old-style metal convertor, pen appears to be new old stock with only light shop wear; one of the most attractive and elegant 75 patterns.
8909: Parker 75 Florence: solid sterling silver, French-hallmarked, black cabochon in cap, 18K French nib, slender convertor, smooth section ring; clean, some wear to barrel end button, fleabites to metal.
8278: Parker 75 Godron: sterling silver, chrome plated trim, made in France, section with angle indicator, full French hallmarks on silver and on nib; very clean, some small bumps to edges of barrel end tassie.
11021: Parker 75 Milleraies ballpoint: silver plated, chrome plated trim, fine parallel lines pattern, made in France, "AL" date code, nice appearance but tool marks to clip button, a touch of plating pitting at the end of the arrow clip.
7651: Parker 75 nib display: five 14K USA production nibs in various stages of completion, to illustrate the process of manufacture; these came to us loose, but could easily be mounted and framed.
10639: Parker 75 Queen Elizabeth in box: limited edition fountain pen made from brass from the famous ocean liner, in less common oversize "treasure chest" brass-bound wooden box, with certificate of authenticity, box key, nib wrench, and spare cartridge (converter installed). Unused, noting handling marks to box.
9060: Parker Classic ballpoint: dark blue matte finish, gold plated trim, made in USA, "PC" date code, Kiwanis emblem on clip.
7685: Parker Classic Flighter ballpoint: brushed stainless steel, polished chrome clip and actuator button, 13.6 cm long, made in USA, connector threads machined, not stamped; new old stock, part of a large hoard, see our Specials page for quantity discounts.
11083: Parker Classic Grain d'Orge ballpoint: gold filled, made in France, special order for Bank One with enamel logo on clip and engraving on cap; "IE" date code could be either 1984 or 1988. As new, but no packaging.
11082: Parker Insignia Athenes ballpoint and injector pencil: elegant but short-lived pattern, gold plated with black lines; new old stock but no packaging, ballpoint uses standard refills, pencil uses 0.5 mm lead, clips bear DB logo.
6567: Parker Israel's 50th Duofold Centennial: numbered limited edition of only 500 pieces, in a cherrywood box with inset bronze commemorative medal with matching number; complete with all original packaging and paperwork; we were fortunate enough to acquire a small cache of these very scarce Duofolds, including some with sequential numbers.
10949: Parker Wood Pen: rare German-made limited edition cartridge/converter filler (slender metal-bodied squeeze-filler converter included), 14.3 cm long, gold plated trim, redwood cap and barrel, section band bears number 883, original sticker on back of cap. Cap is not made to post on the barrel end. Reportedly production of this pen was soon halted by Parker USA, well before the intended 2000 were made.
10835: Platinum (?) Ever-Ready Sharp pencil in box: chrome plated trim with applied spiral pattern; 13.6 cm long, etched spiral pattern, not sold to the public, commissioned by the Sharp Corporation as a gift item reproducing the appearance of company founder Tokuji Hayakawa's 1915 invention (read more here). Pencil uses .5 mm lead, reportedly made for Sharp by Platinum.
9862: Reform 1745: German-made piston-filler, 13 cm long, gold plated trim, green barrel with black cap and filler knob. Pelikan-style screw-in interchangeable nib unit, two-tone plated steel nib, blue-tinted ink window. New old stock, with sticker -- several available. Please note that at this price, we cannot test and tune nibs as we do for our regular stock items: we are selling these as found, from the factory.
7153: Sheaffer Imperial: sterling silver cartridge-filler, 13.1 cm long, gold plated trim, White Dot, unusual zigzag diamond engine turning; only slightest bumps to edges of ends, smooth wet writing inlaid 14K gold nib.
9829: Sheaffer Imperial pencil: sterling silver, 12.7 cm long, crosshatch pattern, gold plated trim, White Dot, uses .9 mm lead; new old stock, several available, original price stickers on back may vary from that shown in photo.
8076: Sheaffer Imperial Sovereign pencil: 14K gold filled, 12.75 cm long, White Dot, uses .9 mm lead, new old stock, original price sticker on back; several available.
7780: Sheaffer Targa ballpoint: sterling silver, 13.3 cm long, chrome plated trim, White Dot, twist-action to extend and retract tip; new old stock but without packaging; several available.
7806: Sheaffer Targa ballpoint: sterling silver, 13.3 cm long, gold plated trim, White Dot, twist-action to extend and retract tip; new old stock but without packaging; several available.
11058: unmarked reproduction of Thomas Jefferson's fountain pen: heavy solid sterling silver, 12.1 cm long, based upon the so-called Bion style pen made for Jefferson in 1824 by William Cowan, a watchmaker in Richmond, Virginia (references here); this copy made in limited numbers, authorized by Monticello. Plated nib, could be replaced with an older dip nib or quill slip for better historical effect; no real feed system, so don't expect modern fountain pen performance -- originally sold as a dip pen.
Here are some articles from our Vintage Pens FAQ that are equally applicable to modern fountain pens:
What do vintage pens offer that new pens
While eBay can be a good source for new and recent fountain pens, watch out for low-feedback sellers offering deals that look too good to be true. Chinese-made fakes -- especially pseudo-Montblancs -- are an ongoing problem, as are fraudsters who "borrow" pictures to offer pens that they do not even own.
Here is an article on fake Parker Sonnets and how to identify them; there has also been a recent flood of fake S.T. Dupont pens, about which you can read more here . It pays to buy such widely-counterfeited items from an established retailer.