Recently there was discussion about the Scripto in Fountain Pen Geeks (an estimable forum). My husband remembers the Scripto from the sixties. It was sold in Woolworths and was, he said, the scrapings from the bottom of the fountain pen barrel, a poorer pen than the Platignum (and that’s saying something!). I worked on one or two myself and those were not good pens, either aesthetically or as writers. My comment in the discussion was somewhat disparaging. A couple of other people came in to defend the pen.
Digging through the pile of pens I have yet to restore I came upon (you’ve guessed it!) a Scripto. Unlike other Scriptos I’ve had this is a cartridge filler. It has a bright metal cap and a hooded nib. The hood has a metal insert which mimics the Parker 61. The cap fits well.
The cartridge is unlike anything current. I flushed it and refilled it with a syringe. It wrote perfectly well with no hard starting or skipping. I had to eat humble pie and returned to the discussion in FPG to report that I had changed my mind about the Scripto.
Well, I’ve changed my mind to some extent. Like the Platignum, a pen in the same price range, it depends which Scripto you have. The two lever-fillers I repaired were just bad pens with poor ink delivery except for the purpose of leaking. They were not worth the effort I had put into them and were ultimately consigned to the landfill. This cartridge pen is very much better and would make a decent everyday writer though it is evidently a cheap pen.
I suppose this goes to show that it doesn’t do to rush to condemn.
2 thoughts on “Scripto Cartridge Filler”
Whether it’s just a coincidence or if there’s a real connection I don’t know, but I’ve a Scripto, identical in other respects but minus its cap – the coincidence being that the Scripto nib tip appears to be formed in the same way as some of the cheap Platignum nibs – Regal, Silverline, Ensign, Cadet and perhaps others.
It seems that the extremity of the nib is turned under at the tip, thus forming a double thickness, which is then smoothed, giving a contoured/rounded profile which makes for very smooth writing – rather a shame since the rest of the pen lacks quality. So is there a connection with Platignum? – in fact Scripto were located a few miles north east of London c. mid ’50s to mid or late ’60s, not that far from the Mentmore/Platignum manufacturing base.
I assume, but am guessing, that it was more practical to bend the nib tips of these pens since they are made of steel, rather than 14 ct. nibs which are softer. It looks to be that this bending of the tips avoided the costly effort of tipping nibs with Iridium etc.
Unlikely that I’d ever write with mine, but I can sense the smooth properties of the tip – it’s true that in their final years Platignum created some very smooth points, but as said, a shame that the rest of the pen lets them down.
There is no connection between Scripto and Platignum. Scripto is an American company. The practice of folding the tip of a steel nib goes back a long way and is very common in cheaper pens. It gives a smooth writing surface as you say but the life of the nib is much shorter than one tipped with iridium (or whatever).