My husband, who is a member of FPN, showed me a horrible photo he saw there: more than $1000 of gold fountain pen nibs, sold for scrap. I studied it carefully and most of those nibs were not damaged. I saw a few that were bent – all bent nibs can be saved. There may have been some in the pile with cracks or missing iridium but I didn’t see any.
What’s the scrap value of a gold nib? Can’t be all that much. Most gold-nib pens in unrestored condition are fetching £30 and upwards – often far upwards these days. Those scrap merchants are throwing money away! How can we get across to these people? A lump of lead behind the ear would do, but we could appeal to their greed if there was a way of contacting them.
It’s so infuriating. Hundreds of restorable pens are going in the trash. I’m sure many of us would love to have those pens, or even those nibs. All restorers, I am sure, have otherwise excellent pens set aside awaiting an appropriate nib.
We could, of course, buy the nibs that appear in quantity on eBay and I have tried to do that once or twice, without success. I’ve also had gold scrap merchants going door-to-door, collecting any gold they can get. I’ve tried to educate those guys but it’s an uphill job. How many fountain pens do they destroy every month?