Design evolution: From Parker Slimfold to Parker 45

One of the things that fascinates me with collecting pens, is discovering their history. Once of the most obvious transitions in design, is the evolution of the original Parker Slimfold (from the UK Duofold series) into the design we now know as the Parker 45.

Here’s a visual example of how the Parker Slimfold evolved into the Parker 45.

From left to right:

The Original Duofold Slimfold (Mark I) – a very succesful little pen, consistent with the design of the rest of the UK Duofold series like the Junior, Senior, Duofold, Victory, etc.

“Transitional” Slimfold – Notice that the cap has changed shape with the more recognisable inverse cone finial of the 45, and the gold cap band has now moved to the cap lip. The clip is also longer and launches the design that will be used on the 45. The pen body however remains the same with the same rounded end of the barrel. The pen still has the same aerometric filling system.

Slimfold Mark II – Now a cartridge filling pen, the barrel is taperred with a flattened end to accommodate the new cartridges, the section is longer and the nib is the new removable unit of the Parker 45. Notice however, that the cap is still threaded on the barrel, which is the most obvious distinguishing feature between the Slimfold Mk II and the 45 Arrow. Also, there is no ring between the barrel and the section yet.

45 Arrow CT – The first Parker 45. The barrel taper is a little bit narrower than the Slimfold Mk II, but similar length. The section is significantly longer making it a much longer pen than the original Slimfolds. The cap is still plastic, but it’s now push-fit with an internal clutch, and there is a “resting” ring between the barrel and the section.

45 Brushed Steel (early) – And here is the final design of the 45 that we are most familiar with. The cap is metal, and the body is either plastic (similar to the Arrow) or also fully metal (the “Flighter” models). The early ones had plastic finial at the end of the barrel, which eventually became a metal finial, and eventually disappeared altogether.

What is missing from this storyline of course are the Parker 19, and the Eversharps (10,000 and ‘Big E’) which originally influenced the whole design change. That’s because I have not found one yet 🙂 If anyone has one to sell, let me know!!

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