Monday, June 14, 2010


It’s been a while since I’ve mentioned my workhorse pen from Classic Fountain Pens in Los Angeles, the Sailor 1911 Large. Anyone familiar with past pages of this blog will already know that Sailor fountain pens take a prominent place in my fascination with pens. No need to review my impressions of Sailor in general. Six different Sailor models are in constant rotation at and around my desk, but the 1911 Large is my never fail, always-a-joy fountain pen.

The 1911 Series was introduced by Sailor twenty-five years ago to mark the company’s foundation. Over the years, variations on the initial design have come out periodically, though it has not varied greatly. Of course, they’ve always had the great Nobuyoshi Nagahara designing the nibs, and that standard is unfailingly consistent. The chances are almost ninety-nine percent certain that a Sailor nib will give satisfaction right out of the box. Most of my Sailor nibs are unmodified and I’m happy with that. The medium 21k gold nib on my 1911 Large was modified to fit my preferences by John Mottishaw at Classic Fountain Pens, and he worked magic on that fountain pen. If anyone is considering a Sailor pen, I strongly recommend John at

Specifics on the 1911 Large…

MODEL NAME: 1911 Color 2021

NUMBER: 11-9201


FILLING SYSTEM: Converter and cartridge

NIB: 21k gold in a wide range of sizes

The design of the pen is traditional and measures 5.5 inches capped, weighing 24 grams. It comes in yellow, blue or red, with gold trim and pocket clip. There are double bands on the cap, which has a rounded black top, minus the familiar Sailor anchor logo. Mine is yellow, and slightly reminiscent of the old 1928 Parker Duofold Mandarin.

I refer to my 1911 Large as the workhorse because it writes page after page, day after day without the smallest slip. The medium nib is very wet, and you would think it might guzzle ink, but that isn’t the case. The ink flows smoothly with good economy. I was writing a letter this morning that turned out to be several pages, and looking back on those pages at the end, I felt the pen deserved some praise. It lays down line after line, day in and day out, forever looking and feeling like the acme of fountain pen writing. Kind of wish I had the blue and red models as well.

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Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America