Monday, July 9, 2012

Fake pens alert

A warning to anyone buying vintage pens on eBay: beware of the Korean seller "yeujeff", formerly "jeffriad" [and now rttrfb, as of September 12; also sunpawel]. He is a notorious faker, specializing in Parker Duofolds and 51s. The pens on offer use some original parts, combined with newly-made caps and barrels. He appears to have sold quite a few forged Mandarin and bandless Duofolds, as well as fake demonstrator 51s. The new parts appear to be skilfully machined, complete with what appear to be factory imprints -- which, however, are clearly laser-engraved upon closer examination. You can read more about yeujeff/jeffriad's fakes here, here, and here [this post at Fountain Pen Network has now been removed by the site administrators, along with all other mentions of yeujeff/jeffriad's doings; I have already written to ask them to reconsider]. You can see what they've been fetching on eBay here (note that there may be a few common but genuine pens scattered in among the fakes; I have yet to see one of his "rare" pens that is unquestionably authentic).

As I have noted elsewhere, it is a real pity that yeujeff/jeffriad didn't choose the honest path, for there is a considerable market for customized vintage pens. Judging from the quality of his counterfeits, he would have done very well making "fantasy" pens -- surely much better than making fakes in the long run, even if he is never arrested or prosecuted.

PS This also demonstrates the limitations of eBay's feedback system, in which yeujeff/jeffriad boasts a 100% positive rating. You can read the comments of the victims here. Note the wildly unlikely numbers of Mandarin Yellow Duofolds, bandless Big Reds, 51 demonstrators, and double-jewel 51s in Nassau, Yellowstone (aka Mustard), and Buckskin Tan.

UPDATE: The posts at FPN regarding the Korean fakes have been restored, though it appears that they have now been redacted to remove any mention of his current username, yeujeff. At least some threads have been locked, as well (threads here, here, here, here, and here).

After having had the opportunity to inspect a few of the fakes in person, I have posted some further details and comments here.


JA said...

Hi again DAVID, I had the pleasure of meeting you personally at the Pen Show in Madrid in 2015, I am reading your Blog about the duofold Falsas of Korea and I would like to ask you a question as a great expert on this subject. I have seen an ad on eBay with this number -222314169235 - and I wonder if it will be false, the reason is that I see the threads of the barrel for the BlindCap with a rare color, is not a uniform yellow, ¿ perhaps Parker manufactured the threads of the barrel with this color and model ? But I have seen these same threads in many yellow Duofold, even from serious sellers like this -401224745846-, this seller I think is serious but the pen also has the same type of threads. My question is this, can both Duofold be false?
I appreciate your info very much, it is very valuable. You can send the reply to this mail
"" "" , I have bought you various types of spare parts and parts and I have learned to restore Sheaffer, s Vac-Fill with their advice on the WEB, a success.
Thanks in advance
Juan and MarĂ­a

David said...

My apologies for the delayed response. Your comment fell into our spam filter, and I only saw it now. I cannot judge the eBay pen with absolute certainty from photos alone. Nevertheless, the use of celluloid stock of the sort used on the Moire series as a plug in the end of a Duofold barrel is more likely to be a sign that the barrel is genuine, rather than fake.
Genuine barrels were typically made of tube stock, plugged at the end. The plugs were usually matching in color, but not always -- and if the threads which held on the blind cap had been damaged, they may well have been repaired by re-plugging the end of the barrel, using whatever celluloid stock was available.