The 3172 is among the least common of Swan’s 1950s pens. It’s a delightful colour and for once the description of the colour is accurate: pastel green.
Why did this pen not sell well? One must remember that the 50s was the decade of denial of colour – black suits or black morning coats with grey pinstriped trousers. Black pens of course. A man seen wearing pink in those days would have caused a riot and a pale green pen would have caused its owner to be viewed askance.
Enough with the 50s fashion, and on to the pen itself. It’s the same as all the other No. 1 nib torpedo pens apart from its delicate, pleasant colour. I’ve had one or two of these pastel green pens before and it seems that they hold their colour well, unlike the greys which can fade with a yellow tinge.
The pen has a firm Phillips nib. This is correct and may be either original or a replacement. Phillips of Oxford took over repair of Mabie Todd pens and ultimately received unassembled stock which they put together with their own-stamped nibs.
A lovely small pen, not suitable for the flex brigade but a very nice writer and of interest to the collector.