The Maruzen Limited Edition Parker Duofold Rashin
I went to the Maruzen Department store in Nihonbashi this afternoon and saw a new pen there that was so interesting it merited an article. It is made by Parker for Maruzen to commemorate Maruzen's 135 year anniversary. It's called the Duofold Rashin (Japanese for compass) because the compass is featured in Maruzen's company song. A lot of Japanese companies have company songs, and this one was written a long time ago by a famous Japanese composer. Yes, I was told the composer's name, and yes, I have forgotten it already. Sorry!
They are making only 300 of these pens. They are blue plastic with chasing on them (the texture is very similar to BHR pens). The nib is two tone, 18K medium point. There is a serial number on the cap band and a gold colored compass on the end of the cap with the words PARKER DUOFOLD 135 MARUZEN encircling it.
They went on sale on June 18, 2004 and will sell until the 300 run out.
The pen is 170 mm long posted, has a 13 mm radius, and weighs 32 grams. It comes in a wooden box that resembles a book.
According to Ms. Kobayashi behind the counter, Maruzen is not selling these from their Web site but they will take e-mail orders even in English at firstname.lastname@example.org
The price is 63,000 yen (the price includes Japanese consumption tax) for the pen and wooden box, and I'm sure there will be additional shipping costs. I would give the dollar equivalent but the rate changes every day.
For more information and photos of Maruzen new and old, see Ron Dutcher's article.