My father grew up using and loving Parker fountain pens. One day when I was old enough (13?), he sat me down and showed me his collection. Now of course, when I say "collection" I really mean horrific graveyard of unusable pens. But that didn't stop him from telling me about each one, why he liked it, and why it was different from the rest. To him, they were moments in time, part of his history, tied to very specific periods and events.
Shortly after, I was given a supremely average Parker Reflex and at that young age I enjoyed it very much. Swapping between blue and black cartridges with reckless abandon and enjoying as they casually mixed, until the previous color yielded to the new one.
As an adult with a full-blown pen addiction, I figured it time to start hunting down some classic Parker pens.
The Parker 75 was my first quality acquisition, a Flighter (stainless steel) model in "quite used" condition from a fellow on FPN. I figured that it would be an excellent choice for a daily carry, as the sturdy construction and weathered finish would mean that I could keep it in my pocket with whatever else and not worry.
So how did things turn out?
Really well so far! It's always in my pocket or in my bag. I don't have to worry about a pen sleeve, or otherwise keeping it away from my keys or sharp objects or penguins. And it's small & light enough that it doesn't adversely affect said pocket.
The clip feels very strong and reliable, but because of previous use, I'm not overly confident in the slip-cap staying on while riding clipped to a pocket.
The grip is a "guider," with grooved indentions for where your fingers should lie. A much less severe version than you'd see on a Lamy Safari. I like it, but it's unobtrusive and easy to circumvent - you can simply rotate the nib&feed unit within the section.
It starts up every time, laying down a very moist XF. Inks tend to come out very saturated.
Also of note, the 75 is very user-friendly, in terms of replacing parts. The Nib slides off the feed, which just plugs into the section. Assuming you can find a replacement nib (or feed, or section, or barrel, or cap...) at a price you like online, it's easy to swap them out.
Man, I really need to start slowing myself down to write legibly.
Meh, we'll worry about that later.
As I mentioned in the samples above, it's a very narrow pen. I would not recommend the 75 for longer writing sessions, even when posted. I have a feeling Parker intended it more for on-the-go writing anyway. I'm not particularly inclined to draw with it, oddly enough. But maybe it's just the inks I've used in it up to this point. Or my mood. Or the winds.
So would I recommend this to the average pen enthusiast? -----Probably not.
Why? Well for starters, most of the ones you see for sale have much nicer finishes - sivler cicele or grain or something else... written in French. They're much more collectors than workhorses. Gorgeous, but you're certainly payin' for all that pretty.
Second, as nice as the 75 is, I don't find it to be particularly unique (again, outside of having a crazy metal finish). I think a lot of modern pens can be found with roughly the same properties.
I think the Parker 75 is a lot more likely to win people over with its specific aesthetic than its resumé.
The reason I bought it was the durable metal finish and pocket-accommodating profile. It did not disappoint. If that happens to be what you're looking for, jump on it.