Mabie Todd Swan Visofil V111/59

The Swan Visofil was introduced in a fanfare of publicity in 1937 and it was clearly seen by the company as a major part of their future but it was not to be. Visofil production was a casualty of the Blitz, so far as I can tell, but it is instructive that whereas the company moved heaven and earth to reintroduce the Leverless and Self Fillers, the Visofil never reappeared. That may have been the government’s decision. They took control of wartime production and, across the industry, the emphasis was on fewer and more simple models. It may also be, though, that Mabie Todd were not entirely grief-stricken at the necessity to drop a model that was expensive to produce, fairly fragile, and had not reached sales expectations.

Comparatively uncommon now, the Visofil is eagerly sought after by collectors, and small wonder. When restored, it’s an excellent filling system, the pen comes in some of Mabie Todd’s most beautiful colours and the trim is decorative.


This is the smaller purse or vest pocket version in Italian Marble, a V111/59, I believe. It’s a wonderful colour mixture and unique to Mabie Todd, so far as I know. As well as in their prestige Visofil models, they used this colour, and some of the other Visofil patterns, in their low-cost Jackdaw school pens. The No1 nib is an oblique stub with some flexibility.


My thanks to Eric Wilson for restoring this pen.

4 thoughts on “Mabie Todd Swan Visofil V111/59

  1. These Mk1 Visofils are wonderful pens and the pattern of yours is gorgeous. The filling mechanism works well and it holds lots of ink, much more than the leverless pens. I have a 211/60 (black) and sorting the filling mechanism was an easy task requiring no more than a section of size 20 ink sac. Restoring the MK2 (VT340) looks a lot more complicated but one of these pens is on my wish list.

    I am sure that you have seen it but there is some nice information on these sites:

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