Earlier this year I saw an ad posted in the classified section of the FPGeeks forum for two black modern Duofolds. The Ad correctly listed them as an International and a Centennial. No mention was made of date codes or nib grades and the two pictures were very fuzzy and didn’t show the nibs or cap medallions. I could tell the International was a MKI and the Centennial was a MKII or MKIII. The seller mentioned the Centennial had serious flow issues and wouldn’t write and probably needed nib work. It also had a symbol engraved on the back of the cap. He said the International worked perfectly.
I have a few spare Centennial nib units so thought I might be able to swap one in if the original nib wasn’t salvageable. The price had been reduces three times with no bites so I decided to take a chance. The price was very good so I offered the seller his reduced asking price and the pens were shipped to me.
I made off like a bandit. The International (my first) turned out to be a 1988 possibly preproduction UK made model with a great medium nib. Its in good condition and perhaps I’ll show that pen down the line. The Centennial turned out to be a 2006 Centennial MKIII with the ace of spades design on the nib. First year for this design. Not sure about the symbol and perhaps someone who watches my video can enlighten me. The pen was in like new condition only completely full of dried ink. Both pens were inky actually but the Centennial was the worst. It took a full day of intensive soaking and flushing to loosen it all. It was a very dirty nib.
Overall its a great pen with a classy design reminiscent of the old streamlined Duofolds. Flat top with Ace motif on the medallion and nib. This design element was new as of the year this pen was made and a departure from the arrow nibs up to this point. The ace looks classy and the arrow clip is retained so I like it. The clip is beefy and made to stand up to heavy use. All trim is heavily plated in 23k gold. The pen really does feel luxurious and I strongly recommend it. They have also recently released the MKIII in Ivorine, Lapis Lazuli and Big Red shades but these have no black bits like older Centennials.
The medium nib performs really well and this is a smooth and comfortable writer. The shape of the section is just perfect for me as is the weight and balance of the pen. Ideal for long writing sessions but maybe not posted. The pen posts but becomes a little ridiculously long when doing so.
That’s it. Love this pen and it’s a welcome addition to my collection. I still think the MKI design is my favorite but I’m definitely glad to have this pen.
For some great deals on Parker Duofold Centennials, head over to Pen Chalet.