Shortly before the Chicago Pen Show, Dan Reppert emailed me to ask me if I had any idea what these came from:
Nope. I have absolutely no idea. I knew it was a pencil mechanism of some sort, but the plastic bushings on these are unlike anything I’ve seen before.
I might as well have thrown out some wild, off-the-wall guess that it was a fan blade from a windmill or something crazy like that. Oddly enough, had I done so, I would have been right. Sort of.
I asked Dan where he found them, but he didn’t share that detail or anything else with me about them – in classic Dan form, he was being mysterious and teasing me with a "you’ll see." The Chicago Pen Show finally rolled around in May, and there was Dan with this in tow:
This nifty piece of folk art was made mostly from pieces of Sheaffer pencil parts – well, all except for this little guy in the corner, who fell off a couple times during the course of the show:
The fact that such unusual mechanisms were used to make the windmiill suggests that this was made either by a Sheaffer employee or by someone who enjoyed trolling around in Sheaffer’s dumpsters. The fence and the tree are made from pencil barrels, the sun is a ring of clips, and a closer look at the flowers reveals that with all those white dots, they must have carried a Sheaffer lifetime guarantee of freshness: