Diamond Point "Taper End" Pen c1932-1939
by Jim Mamoulides, March 12, 2002, updated June 20, 2002
A truly odd duck
The Diamond Point Pen Company started in New York, NY sometime after 1900. Collectors who are familiar with the company are probably most familiar with the large Duofold Senior sized lever fill pens Diamond Point made in the 1920s in a range of wild colors and patterns. Some models of these pens had wide horizontally engraved cap bands on both ends of the cap. Earlier pens were marketed under the Blofil and Protector names. Diamond Point is not related to the Diamond Medal pen company from Chicago.
Diamond Point marketed their pens in the upper end of the low price segment, while still offering 14 karat gold nibs and decent designs and attractive plastics and finishing. They were neither bottom feeders nor competing with the big four brands. As a result, the Diamond Point pens of the 1920s and 1930s looked the part of a more expensive pen, but they saved money by using smaller, unornamented nibs and using a cheaper and less durable plating process.
It is my understanding, from talking with Diamond Point collectors, that the earlier flat-top pens may have been made from hollow plastic tube stock rather than solid stock that was lathe turned, making the pens cheaper to make. The cap and barrel ends would have to be capped using this method, probably glued on.
In the 1930s, Diamond Point introduced a line of pens in black and their typical bright patterns with unique tapers on each end of the pen. The pen also had a very large and distinctive clip with a ball end. Like earlier flattop Diamond Point pens from the 1920s, this pen has the clip imprinted with "DIAMOND" and two P's.
This particular model is unusual compared with other 1930s pens in that the streamlining popularized by the Sheaffer Balance pens, introduced in 1930, is absent in favor of a rather straight cap and barrel with tapered nipple-like protrusions, which are black cap-top inserts. This is most noticeable on the color models, where the black caps show distinctly from the pen body. Certainly the pens won't be mistaken for anything else.
References showing this model date it from about 1932 to 1939. The pen carries no imprint and only refers to the maker on the clip.
Diamond Point nibs are good quality and write well enough, but certainly don't stand out next to the more elaborate and decorated nibs produced by Waterman, Sheaffer, Parker and Conklin.
The Diamond Point pen shown in this article is fitted with a somewhat flexible fine-medium nib. It's a slightly larger than average sized pen, about 5 inches long capped and 6 1/4 inches posted.
For a pen designed for the second tier market, it's very well made. Everything fits together well, the trim is uniformly plated, the cap screws on tightly and there are no ragged spots anywhere. The plastic polishes up nicely and the pen feels very good in the hand. The cap posts snugly and feels like it will stay put. The only item to me that looks cheaply done is the clip, which has a very stamped look to it. The taper ends take some getting used to, but they are distinctive.
The clip, as is typical with clips mounted to the front of the cap, makes the pen ride high in the pocket, but holds it very securely.
The pen fills quickly and easily with a stroke of the lever. The lever is not ornate, as on older model flattop Diamond Point pens, but this pen was made at the height of the Depression, so little cut backs appear on many makers pens.
The good news is the nib is smooth, though not buttery, and writes with a nice, but small amount of flex, giving some expression to writing. The bad news is the nib is a tad on the small size and certainly is plain.
Considering the market, this is a nice pen, but it would not sway a Parker or Sheaffer owner away from their favorite. For those who had less to spend, this would have been a nice pen that should have provided good service. It's unique and an interesting design, not a copycat, which fits with the other Diamond Point pens I've examined or used.