Pelikan’s M620 City Series (2001-2006)

Pelikan M620 City Series

 

The quintessential collector understands passion.  It permeates every act of assembling, using, preserving, and displaying whatever may be the focus of one’s interest.  The aforementioned undertaking can convey a tremendous sense of satisfaction.  The activities of the collector should not, however, be confused with those of a hoarder.  The collector is deliberate, focused, even if only loosely, and with a self-awareness that the hoarder lacks.  Why do we collect?  It seems to be a part of human nature, the motivations behind it as varied as the individuals who partake.  Some of us do it as a celebration of the objects as works of art.  Others use collecting in order to make sense of the world or as a means of accumulating a source of knowledge and ideas.  Collecting can showcase a prowess or even be used to teach a lesson.  Over the years, Pelikan has produced individual pens meant as part of a larger grouping.  One such assortment began in 2001 when Pelikan released the first model in a group of pens known as the City Series.  These special editions have become incredibly coveted by collectors.  The pens are part of the M6xx line and officially dubbed M620.  A total of twelve models in all were made and collectors have spent a considerable amount of time and energy trying to amass the entire series.  Many have been successful while others continue the hunt.  What follows is meant to highlight the City Series and to pay homage to the efforts of my fellow collectors.  I can assure you that photos do not do these pens any justice.  Their beauty needs to be seen in person in order to be truly appreciated.  This particular post is dedicated to the efforts of Mike W., a fastidious collector whose years of effort and perseverance brought the pens that you see below together.

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News: Edelstein Garnet Added to the Standard Line-Up

Pelikan Edelstein GarnetThe Edelstein collection of inks now spans 15 different shades inspired by various gemstones.  These have been split between a standard perennial line up of eight inks with the remaining seven comprising a more limited edition series usually only available for a short time.  In a surprise move during March of 2017, Pelikan announced that Aquamarine, the 2016 Ink of the Year, would become part of the regular line-up, swelling the ranks to nine.  Today, Pelikan took to social media to announce another resurrection.  This time it is Garnet, the 2014 Ink of the Year, that will joint the standard assortment, bringing the total number to an even ten.  

“We have some great news for you! It‘s back again: our Edelstein Ink of the Year 2014 Garnet is now part of our standard assortment! 🙂 Catch it, if you can. 😊”

Garnet was billed as a dark red color.  The fact that this is the second time an older limited edition has been put back into service suggests that this might be a new trend for Pelikan.  That possibility may give hope to those longing for some of the inks from days gone by.  Amber, Turmaline, and Amethyst come to mind as past fan favorites that have been sorely missed since their discontinuation.  I’m a little bit at a loss as to why Garnet may have been chosen ahead of any one of those.  It’s not that Garnet doesn’t have its admirers but it generally received somewhat mixed reviews at the time of its original release.  Amber, in my opinion, would have been the smart play here, hands down.  Still, I won’t complain about added variety and I’ll take heart in the fact that we may yet see some of the more desired inks make a return.  What are your thoughts on Garnet’s new status? 

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News: Pelikan Raises U.S. Prices

Pelikan M800 EF NibIn January of this year, I reported that Pelikan pens equipped with an EF nib and sold in the European Union were to experience a price increase of 10-12%.  We have since seen this in full effect across all of the releases out of Hanover this year.  What this translates into is that an EF furnished M800 cost €44 (~$50.79) more, an M600 cost €32 (~$36.94) more, and an M205 cost €10.40 (~$12.01) more than the same model equipped with an F, M, or B nib.  To add insult to injury, it’s not as if the premium price is buying anything new or improved.  So why did Pelikan single out the EF nib?  The official explanation offered was that EF nibs are popular, make up a decent portion of sales and, due to their extra fine width, take more time to produce due to the extra grinding and polishing that needs to occur for a smooth writing experience.  If that justification sounds weak, consider the alternative explanation put forth by several sources citing that the unofficial reason for this price increase was to discourage EU vendors from selling their wares to Asia.  The implication then is that the price increase represented Pelikan’s attempt to further control the market.  To date, the United States has been spared from this practice.  Perhaps that is due to the fact that U.S. customers already pay a significant premium when purchasing domestically.  Well, it appears the other shoe has finally dropped and, to the excitement of no one, Pelikan has decided to extend the EF premium across the pond with the release of the M600 Vibrant Orange.

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News: M600 Vibrant Orange

Pelikan M600 Vibrant OrangeThis year has seen some rather conservative releases as far as color and styling go.  When you look at the Spirit of 1838, the M815 Metal Striped, and the M805 Raden Royal Platinum you see pens with a very monochromatic or two toned styling (usually black & silver).  I don’t say that to take anything away from those models but many of us out there yearn for a splash of color.  The M205 Olivine and the upcoming M800 Stone Garden help scratch that itch somewhat but even their colors are more subdued.  To the casual observer, it would seem that Pelikan has been using their M600 line over the last few years to provide an outlet for more colorful releases.  We saw this with the Pink and the Turquoise-White for example.  Well, today we have a new addition to that line, the M600 Vibrant Orange.  Rumored since earlier this year, the Vibrant Orange is due out by mid-November and is sure to be a welcome addition to many who find the M600 line of pens to be the sweet spot in terms of size and weight. 
 
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Pelikan Hubs 2018 – Philadelphia: A Recap

Pelikan Hubs 2018 Banner

Another Pelikan Hubs event has come and gone meaning that it’s time for a proper recap.  September 21st was a big day for lovers of fine writing as it marked the fifth installment of Pelikan’s annual gathering.  Word continues to spread about the fun and excitement of the evening as demonstrated by the ever-expanding number of registrations.  This year saw gatherings take place in 181 cities spread across 46 countries with over 4500 registered participants, a roughly 30% increase over the year prior.  Given the gravity of the occasion, Pelikan kindly provided me an opportunity to interview the Hubs team ahead of this year’s event, allowing us a fresh perspective and a small peak behind the curtain.  Not all was smooth sailing this year, perhaps a reflection of some growing pains.  There are reports of Pelikan’s gifts not being delivered to a few of the Hub locations in time for the event.  Other Hubs have reported Olivine ink boxes containing Smoky Quartz, a puzzle that’s beyond me to solve.  While disappointing, I think that it is important to keep things in perspective.  The free gifts are indeed nice but they are by no means what brings the majority of us together so hopefully those Hubs were able to make the best of the situation.  The Hub masters continue to show no shortage of passion and commitment and deserve a lot of kudos for ensuring the success of their local venues.  Many went above and beyond by making or purchasing their own items for attendees to sample and take home.  It is the dedication of the Hub masters that goes a long way to making the event as great as it is.  Their efforts are even more commendable when you look at the ever increasing burden of finding a venue for such large groups without any budget.  It’s that burden which prompted me to relinquish the title of Hub Master this year in Philadelphia, PA, USA.  Frank Limper of Federalist Pens and Paper picked up the mantle and ran a great event.  Our local hub has been held at a variety of locations and this year brought us somewhere new, The Victoria Freehouse Pub.  The venue was cozy, provided good food and drink, and had a nice atmosphere.  Everyone that I spoke with had a great time and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the venue for a future gathering.  The only major blemish on my night was the parking ticket waiting for me when all was said and done (¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ).

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News: M800 Stone Garden Special Edition


Pelikan M800 Stone Garden Fountain Pen
As anticipated, news broke early this morning across Europe regarding the next big release out of Hannover.  All I can say is prepare to hear the sound of jaws dropping.  Today we have the Pelikan M800 Stone Garden Special Edition and, if the product shots do it justice, it looks to be a gorgeous fountain pen.  Of course, given the inconsistent track record of Pelikan’s product photography over the last several releases, we’ll have to reserve judgement until we can see some real world pictures.  Still, there is a lot of promise here.  This model follows closely on the heels of the M205 Olivine which just recently entered retail channels and the much more limited Raden Royal Platinum.  The promotional literature for the Stone Garden states; “Rock gardens are known for their soothing effect.  The new special edition Souverän M800 Stone Garden absorbs this atmosphere and offers tranquility in daily chores.”  It is anticipated to be available around mid-October. 

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Exclusive: An Interview With The Pelikan Hubs Team

As you likely know by now, this is the fifth anniversary of the Pelikan Hubs event.  The excitement is certainly building as we are now just under a month away from the big day.  Some of you have been around since its inception while a large swath of those reading have come to the event more recently.  Have you ever wondered how it all came about?  Questioned whose behind it all?  Maybe you’re wondering if this is going to be something to look forward to for years to come?  I too had a lot of questions and a few concerns about the event.  I e-mailed Juana, a member of the Hubs team in Hannover, who works in the social media department.  Quite unexpectedly, that message actually ended up leading to a very pleasant telephone conversation with Pelikan’s Global Marketing Manager of Fine Writing Instruments, Jens, and the rest of his team.  They were gracious enough to grant me and The Pelikan’s Perch an exclusive interview.  After much thought, I posed a series of twenty questions to the group which you will find below along with their answers.  I hope that you find the information interesting and perhaps walk away with a clearer understanding of the event’s purpose and its origins.  The text that follows has only been very lightly edited for easier readability due to differences in language but the responses have not been altered in any meaningful way.

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Contest: WIN a Pelikan P16 Stola III Fountain Pen

Pelikan M600sThe Pelikan’s Perch turns 4 years old today!  No longer a toddler, part of me still cannot believe that the site is going strong and continuing to grow year after year.  I can only attribute that fact to my love of the brand, the great products Pelikan puts out, and the support of all of you, without which none of this would be possible.  My blog was born from a desire to share the knowledge and perspective that I had gained in researching my favorite fountain pens.  I wanted to give back to the community that empowered me in my quest and fostered my love for fine writing.  All I can do is say thank you.  Thank you for reading, for sharing my work, for interacting and contributing to the conversation, and for four great years.  To celebrate this anniversary, I have decided to host the first ever contest to grace The Pelikan’s Perch.  In trying to decide just what type of prize to offer, I reflected back on my own collection.  In doing so I realized that the Pelikan P16 Stola III fountain pen would be well suited for the task at hand and entering for your chance to win one couldn’t be easier.  Read on to learn about all of the details.

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