Pelikan is a German brand of fine writing instruments established in 1838 by chemist Carl Hornemann, who initially concocted and sold inks and pigments in 1832. Another chemist, Gunther Wagner, took over the company in 1871 and adopted his family’s emblem, the pelican, as the company symbol in 1878.
In 1996, most of the company shares were acquired by a Malaysian holding firm. However, Pelikan pens are still made at the company plant 30 miles east of Hanover, Germany.
Demonstrators, as their name suggests, allow you to see the mechanisms of the pens, as well as how much ink you have left, ensuring that you won’t run out in the middle of a sentence or a particularly effusive flourish.
Peli 205 blue demon writing sample in a Yeah! notebook with Diamine Cerise ink.
The pelican-beak-shaped clip, fittings, and ornamental rings are chromium-plated, with a built-in converter-style fill system, also called a plunger mechanism. It’s comfortably sized at 4.14 inches long capped, 5.13 inches long posted.
Available nib sizes are EF, F, M, and B. This one’s an F. The nib is hand-crafted and hand-polished stainless steel, strong and robust, yet with a hint of spring that allows a bit of play in line variation.
Pelikan pens are not distributed in Manila. Try buying online.
The pen is filled by dipping in an ink bottle and twisting the plunger mechanism from the bottom. This makes ink stain the section (the area just after the nib), which is why many collectors, such as myself, dislike inking demonstrators. But it looks pretty when filled.
The blue Peli demon rests on a Yeah! notebook, purchased at National Bookstore in Rockwell. A Moleskine knock-off – see elastic along the side – it is inexpensive and well-made, the paper creamy with no feathering and minimal show-through. Yeah!
The Peli’s clip is beak-shaped and has eyes (left). The Parker Duofold’s nib is gold and flexy. More on that next time.