|he trouble with this first design was that the ink dried on the feed too quickly if the pen was left unused for a while, but also that it sometimes too willingly released ink and created a nice blob, it also frequently leaked in the cap.
In 1950 Parker introduced the Parker 41 a somewhat smaller pen than the Parker 51 that was a mid-priced line between the Parker 51 and the Parker 21 with similiar design. Parker realized that these pens handled the ink better than the old Parker 21 style, so when the Parker 41 was discontinued in 1951 the complete Parker 21 line was redesigned, the
Mark II becoming in fact identical in most aspects to the Parker 41, the only thing that differed were:
The design of the clip
The imprint on the cap
The imprint on the filler mechanism (The Parker 41 clearly states this)
The Parker 41 came in a wide range of colours and since the parts are interchangable it is quite probable that Parker used old Parker 41 stock and fitted to Parker 21 filling mechanisms, leaving both Parker 21's and Parker 41's in rare colours, such as described in the Parker 41 section of this penography.
|Some sources list both Parker 41's and Parker 21's in additional colours of coral, turqoise and different shades of green and blue. One of the reasons for the early demise of the Parker 41 was that it was not looked upon as a "real" 51, so when the Parker 41 was discontinued, a cheaper Parker 51, the Special 51, was introduced to fill the middle priced niche, left by the Parker 41, between the Parker 21 and the Parker 51.
t is important though to remember that all parts between the two Parker 21 designs are not interchangable, the nib and feed can be exchanged, the section and filler can not. The Mark II's redesigned section fitted snugly over the nib and feed — they are easily told apart since the Mark I nib and feed was attached to the filler unit when the section was unscrewed, Mark II "stuck" in the section.
The Parker 21 quickly became very popular and soon took over 60 percent of Parkers over $5 market. They are today very common and often excellent writers. A lot of "high class" collectors use them as their everyday pen. Due to the cheaper plastic they are relatively easy to break, especially the sections are often found cracked.