Introduction to Michel (Michael) Perchin Twist Ballpoint Pens
The purpose of this guide is to familiarize you, the potential buyer, with the Michel Perchin Ballpoint Collection of fine, sterling silver and enamel, writing instruments. We will define the edition size, detail the color palette, and highlight the important features of these unique, limited edition, twist mechanism ballpoint pens, for the benefit of new and experienced collectors and admirers of fine pens alike.
The Michel (Michael) Perchin Ballpoint Collection
Although well known for its meticulously crafted fountain pens, one of Michel Perchin, Inc.’s earliest production pens was a limited edition pair of writing instruments simply known as the Ballpoint Collection. The pens were produced in two colors only, warm amber hard enamel with 22K yellow gold plating and royal blue hard enamel with rhodium plating.
The pens were slated for production of only 888 pieces in each color, beginning in 1997, but not all serial numbers were completed due to time constraints, strict quality control standards, and the introduction of newer designs. (See our other short guide discussing serial numbers for limited edition items.) Recently, however, Michel Perchin, Inc. was able to reschedule and complete production of a limited quantity of serial numbers that were never completed when the pens were first being produced
Many Michel Perchin authorized retail dealers sold out of these items in the last several years but, some of the newly produced pens may be available. One authorized retail dealer, White Mountain Trading Company, seems to still have some of these items available for sale on eBay. The original manufacturer’s suggested retail price for these items was $1100 apiece but some matched serial number sets, (a hard to find occurrence due to production scheduling and color variation), may sell for more in the after market or collector’s market.
These ballpoint pens feature English hallmarked, .925 Sterling silver, and one-piece barrels, fitted with a twist mechanism cap which retracts the ballpoint refill into the body of the pen.
The sterling silver pen barrels are precisely engraved, (known as guilloché), prior to the application of translucent hard enamel in multiple layers using a goose quill. (See our other guide detailing the enameling process.) The alternating “wave pattern” engraving gives the pens a shimmering effect when turned under light.
The serial number for each pen is engraved on the cap ring after the words Michel Perchin:
The numerator, or top number of the serial number, indicates the pen’s position in the production sequence. The denominator, or bottom number, indicates the MAXIMUM number of pens to be produced in the series. (See our other guide regarding serial numbers.)
The ballpoint refill extends out through the nose cone of the pen with a twist of the cap.
It retracts again into the body of the pen with a twist of the cap in the opposite direction. The pen accepts a Schmidt brand, P 900 style, ballpoint refill which should be available at most office product stores or stationers.
Lastly, one great feature on all Michel Perchin pens is the beautiful engraved “MP Elephant” logo. The elephant was chosen as a mascot for the Michel Perchin brand because of its recognition as a symbol for prosperity and good fortune in many middle to far eastern cultures.
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