It took a minute for me to figure out why this one looked a little different. It’s a Sheaffer "Pearlie" (or "Pearl Center" pencils, if you choose to speak the King’s Sheafferese). But it’s no ordinary Sheaffer Pearlie – in fact, it’s the only one like it I’ve ever seen. This one is a thin model (shown here next to one of the usual girth):
But the pencil had one very obvious problem. Thrilled as I was to find a new variant of these, I knew it would bug me if I couldn’t do something about that missing top. Fortunately, these pencils aren’t all that hard to find in this color without the pearl center, and I had a duplicate (thanks to the spare I found on Terry Mawhorter’s table in Philly):
I resolved to attempt a topectomy in order to restore my tired example to its former glory, but I ran into a problem almost immediately: the solid color examples, unlike the pearl-centered kind, have upper barrels molded from one solid piece of plastic. My brilliant idea was to use a knife to carefully cut along the lowest rib molded into the plastic. In theory, once the top was cut free, it should just slide off . . .
Unless it shatters. Maybe that’s why there aren’t any of these thin model pencils floating around, huh? Against my better judgment, I decided to give it one more shot – and one shot was all I had left. It took more time than it was worth by most standards, but at the end of the day:
The only thin model Pearlie I’ve ever seen is back on the road!