The Parker 51 is a fountain pen introduced in 1941. Parker’s vintage advertisement called it “The Most Wanted Pen in the World”, a slogan referring to the restrictions on the production of pens for the civilian market in the United States. during WWII. Parker’s continued advertising during the war created a demand that took several years to complete after the end of the conflict. A common misconception about Quink is that it was primarily intended for the Parker “51”, which has generated more than $ 400 million in sales over its thirty years of existence. While Quink was ideal for use with the 51, other Parker pens of this generation were just as capable of using it. The Parker “51” was first made available in 1941, ten years after the development of Quink. The two inks that were best used with the “51” were specifically the Double Quink later, quick-drying and super-fast Superchrome. The pen and ink were both named “51” to mark 1939, the company’s 51st year of existence, during which development was completed (US Patent No. 116,097).
By giving the pen a number instead of a name, Parker avoided the problem of translating a name into other languages. The “51” was innovative at the time, with its hooded tubular nib and multi-finned collector, all designed to work in conjunction with the pen’s exclusive ink, allowing the pen to remain wet and establish Uniform line with ultra-fast drying ink or more traditional inks. With various refinements, the “51” remained in production until 1972. The most significant design change occurred in 1948, with the introduction of the improved aerometric filling system. At the same time, Parker reformulated its ink, reducing alkalinity, adding a selection of brilliant colors, and calling the new Superchrome product. Like the “51” ink, it also came with a warning that it should only be used in the Parker “51” (or his new little brother, the “21”), but the warning was more discreet. The pen was not named after the P-51 Mustang fighter; but Parker took advantage of the coincidence by comparing the pen and the plane in his advertisement. In addition, a pilot suspected of falsifying flight records in his logbook to overstate his actual experience would have recorded “P-51 hours”, relying on the ambiguity of the term “P-51” to avoid to confront suspect. The “51” is popular with collectors of pens, and in 2002 Parker released a lookalike model called 51 Special Edition. In 2004, the Parker 100, bigger and heavier, was launched.