Pelikan’s M915 Hunting was a limited edition of just 3000 numbered pieces released in 1994. This was back in the early days of Pelikan’s limited edition releases, officially only preceded by the Blue Ocean (1993). This model was aimed at the community of hunters. The pen sports a sterling silver barrel overlay done in the Toledo style and portrays a classic motif. The scene is dominated by the depiction of a stag held at bay by two hunting dogs. As you pan around the barrel, you see representations of classic game animals such as pheasants, quail, wood grouse, and ducks taking flight. There is even a scene of a fox slinking away. This entire landscape is set within an oak-leaf border. The cap and piston knob are done in a shade of hunter green with a green lacquer used to fill in the areas between the engravings on the overlay. The nib is the standard two-toned 18C-750 gold seen on the M8xx line. All of this comes together to stunning effect when seen in person, regardless of what your stance on the sport of hunting is. Unfortunately, there are concerns about the durability of this finish that I wanted to share in case you own or have occasion to come across one of these.
While it is not hard to acknowledge that the M915 Hunting is a splendid pen, it may not be the most durable. I have always contended that the purpose of a pen is to write and all pens should be used in that capacity. I don’t collect show pieces that are meant to sit idle, their purpose unfulfilled. This has always been my personal approach to this hobby. Pelikan has suited that philosophy well as their pens are usually quite durable, including many of their oldest models. Hunting is the first Pelikan fountain pen that has caused me to question that assertion. My personal experience as well as that of a few others with first hand knowledge has been that the green enamel on the barrel can actually soften and dull with use. Finger prints can be seen embossed into the finish and, with ongoing and regular use, the enamel can wear away completely, resulting in a marring of the pen’s overall appeal. It is unfortunate then that this pen may be better suited as a show piece than a daily user.
The technique of lacquer applied to a silver overlay does not appear to have been implemented on too many other limited editions. The Concerto (1996) is the other most notable pen with a lacquered motif. Intended for release around Christmas 1995, production was delayed by problems encountered in testing the pen’s materials. This was reportedly due to issues with the application of the lacquered finish. Whatever adjustment they may have made, the Concerto appears to be a bit more durable though it seems telling that we haven’t seen this type of finish regularly used since.
I wrote to Pelikan in Germany and their repair service confirmed that they do not have any spare parts for the M915 Hunting and therefore it appears that they are unable to repair any damage that the lacquer finish might incur with use. This is a beautiful pen and a great writer so I’m not here to dissuade anyone from purchasing or using one. If you do plan to use it, just take extra care and be mindful of the issues that can arise with regular use. Feel free to leave a comment and let me know what your experience has been.