Faber-Castell 663 Fountain Pen23 January 2017
In 1919 a gentleman called Hermann Böhler left Kaweco to form a company named Osmia. Faber-Castell began to acquire Osmia in 1935, finally buying the company outright in 1951. During this time, and into the early 60s, Faber-Castell continued to use the Osmia name and logo. The 663, however, was produced in the 60s using the Faber-Castell name while retaining the Osmia logo of a diamond inside a circle. They can be found on eBay now and then for quite reasonable prices.
The 663 comes with a gold nib. Mine’s a fine. With pens of this age you’re going to find nibs in all kinds of conditions. Mine needed a little work to smooth it but now writes beautifully, with just a little bit of flex, too. You can’t buy a new, modern, pen with a gold nib of this standard for the price you can pick one of these up. Just procede with caution if buying from someone unknown.
It’s a piston filler and holds quite a bit of ink. There’s a large clear ink window. It looks red in the pictures because of the ink I’d filled it with.
The gold plated clip is strong and still very clippy even after all these years. The cap screws closed and posts securely.
The overall style of the 663 really makes me think of Mad Men. I can see Don Draper using one of these. Who knows who has used it, though, and what’s been written with it? There’s always a romance with vintage pens. They’ve passed through many hands before being held by yours and, hopefully, will pass through many more after you.
I recommend the Faber-Castell 663. It doesn’t seem to be particularly collectable which means it’s reasonably priced. You won’t find a new pen of this quality for even twice as much.
I took the information in the first paragraph from this page on FountainPen.it.
Still a great pen, but unfortunately no longer reasonably priced if you can find one at all. It also seems that the piston seal is breaking down in a lot of them, although that’s something we’ll probably see a lot of with all kinds of vintage pens from that period over the next couple of years.