(Susan M. Pigott is a fountain pen collector, pen and paperholic, photographer, and professor. You can find more from Susan on her blog Scribalishess.)
Let me introduce you to Walter, my 1970s Montblanc 149. I looked long and hard for just the right 149. I knew I didn’t want a modern one. I wanted one that was lovingly used with a 14k nib with some bounce to it.
I chanced upon some desirable Montblancs on the Fountain Pen Geeks “For Sale” forum. But they were all sold before I could snag one. The seller, Barry Gabay, let me know that he had some others I might be interested in. Sure enough, he had a 1970s Montblanc 149 with a bouncy 14k nib. I bought it, completely unaware that I was purchasing it from the editor of Pen World Magazine!
When the pen arrived, I immediately fell in love. When I fall in love with a pen, I usually give it a name. There was no question he would be named “Walter.” I am a rabid Breaking Bad fan, and this gorgeous black 149 made me think of Walter White in his Heisenberg Pork Pie hat.
Of course, my Walter isn’t an evil meth maker, he’s just an innocent victim of my fountain pen addiction.
Like Walter White, my Walter has a few bruises and scars. These do not bother me in the least--in fact, I love that Walter’s finish bears marks of use. It gives him character.
The 149 is a large pen, measuring 5.8 inches/147mm capped, 5.2 inches/132mm uncapped, and 6.6 inches/168mm posted. It is perfectly balanced, and I adore large pens. My 149 has plastic piston threads, and the piston works flawlessly--as smooth as Heisenberg talking himself out of a tight situation.
The cap has a simple clip, somewhat brassed, but that’s what a rough life will do to you. The cap ring is engraved with Montblanc Meisterstück No. 149. “Germany” appears in tiny letters on the clip band.
The most stunning thing about any MB 149 is the enormous nib. This gorgeous hunk of 14k gold is tritone with beautiful scrollwork, the Montblanc logo, and the number 4810 (the height in meters of Mont Blanc).
The nib is a medium and is juicy, smooth, and bouncy. The solid ebonite feed supplies plenty of Kobe Mikage Grey ink to the nib. Walter is a delightful writer. He and I have collaborated on some rather dark poetry and prose.
I know some people think that Montblancs are overrated and ostentatious. I disagree. Even though the pen is large and can command attention, the simplicity of this black and gold cigar-shaped pen also allows it to be classic and stealthy--like black Ray-Bans over piercing green eyes. Yes. Go ahead and say it: “I am the danger.”
Enjoy reading The Pen Addict? Then consider becoming a member to receive additional weekly content, giveaways, and discounts in The Pen Addict shop. Plus, you support me and the site directly, for which I am very grateful.
Membership starts at just $5/month, with a discounted annual option available. To find out more about membership click here and join us!