Sunday, November 8, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Swingline 77B

Swingline 77B (without and with base) steel and plastic chrome finish

Swingline 77B steel and plastic chrome finish

Two years ago I bought a small pink and chrome Swingline 77B stapler and had a feeling it was missing something.  I had seen other 77 models with molded plastic bases which seemed to complete the picture.  Yet, the bottom of this 77 seemed too finished to be encased in plastic.  Finally I happened upon a complete red and chrome 77B and later acquired this ivory and chrome example.   One might ask who needs a stapler separate from its base.  The most obvious answer is so that the base can be fastened to an out of the way surface and house the stapler when not in use.  As the stapler slides into the base it locks in place so this mounting surface could be on a wall or even a ceiling and the stapler would hold fast.  I mean this stapler could even be used in space.  Now there are other wall-mountable staplers out there, but the 77B is by far my favorite yet.
Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, November 8, 2009.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive-Apsco 3003 & 4004

Apsco 3003 chrome and hammered gray finish

Apsco 4004 chrome and hammered gray finish

Here are two more models from the Apsco line. Each has the same sleek design as the Apsco 2002 featured September 14, 2008.  The 3003 is a smaller version of the 2002, retaining the austere Scandinavian design of the "deluxe executive" model yet scaled to fit the proportionately smaller surface area of the non-"deluxe executive" desk.  This in contrast to the recently featured Swingline No. 3 which is really only  a shorter version of the No. 4.  The 4004 is the "dual-purpose" model, for use as a plier, tacker or desktop stapler.  Two more examples that fall under the "great things come from Sweden" category.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, November 2, 2009.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Swingline No. 3 & No. 3C

Swingline No. 3 steel & plastic gray finish

Swingline No. 3C steel, plastic, and wood black finish

Swingline No. 3C (bottom) steel & wood black finish

I have previously featured the Swingline No. 4 and the No. 3P, yet only mentioned the No. 3. Here are two examples of the more compact workhorse that was no less wide-spread. It's no rarity, but as with the No. 4, the design is among Swingline's best. At the museum where I work, there are many examples of the gray No. 4 still in use which certainly can attest to the quality of its manufacture and design. The No. 3C, above, an earlier example, has the black finish, early plastic plunger and a wood base.  Its finish is similar to another No. 4, also previously mentioned here.  When I first saw a No. 3C, I did not expect to base to be as finished as it is.  I include an image of it to show its simple yet elegant inscription and rivet attachment.  It reminds me of how Michelangelo said he freed the figures from the blocks of stone he carved.  Perhaps inside this block of wood, a streamlined Sphynx-paw base lurks...waiting for its freedom.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, October 11, 2009.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive-Neva Clog P-50

Neva Clog P-50 steel brushed metal finish

When it rains, it pours. In the last month I have learned about three new Neva Clog staplers. The appearance of the P-50 connects a model number with the US2033599 patent drawing. At first, I was a bit puzzled by its appearance, the spring button that pushes up through the anvil plate. Fortunately, the patent drawing explains its purpose. The anvil of the P-50 is designed solely to pin and the button prevents the staple from bending up in the middle, producing a easily removable staple. The design seems almost limiting but I am sure with knowledge of its intended application, it makes perfect sense. In any case, I am only too pleased to share another chapter of the Neva Clog story.
detail of US2033599 patent drawing

detail of US2033599 patent drawing

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, October 1, 2009.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Neva Clog M-100 & MB-100

Neva Clog M-100 chrome finish

Every now and then something comes along and renews my passion for staplers. Best described as a "Franken-stapler", the M-100 is a S-100 with a modified jaw. I have every reason to believe it was Neva Clog factory modification as evidenced in the photo below from a recent online auction. The box is labeled "Special Neva Clog Stapling Plier Model MB-100," indicating the MB-100 is most likely a modified B-100. It gives me great hope to know there are more Neva Clog "Special" staplers out there. From browsing Neva Clog patents, I know there were many more stapler designs than staplers I've seen and that means many more Neva Clog to find. Cherchez l'agrafeuse!

Neva Clog MB-100 image from a recent online auction

Excerpt from The Stapler of the Week, September 23, 2009.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Arrow Commander

Arrow Commander steel blue and corroded finish

The Arrow Commander is by no means a remarkable stapler. Like the Markwell RX-45 and Neva Clog staplers featured March 2, 2008, the Commander components are punched and formed from sheets of steel. When I was in elementary school, my father was a punch-press operator for Tonka Toys in Mound, Minnesota. The simplicity of design and construction found in the Commander reminds me of those early Tonka trucks I played with in my youth. It's really quite interesting to wonder at all the products made of pop-rivets and sheet metal. One need only to add some real rubber wheels and my friend Gary in Duluth might add it to his annual Tonka window display.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, April 6th, 2009.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Bostitch P-4

Bostitch P4 stapler steel black finish

The Bostitch P4 is another fine stapler design by J.F. Cavanagh. Perhaps you remember the Bostitch P1 stapler featured May, 24, 2008. The P4 has the look of a staple gun tacker but Cavanagh included an anvil plate with a very deep throat. The combination of increased staple-driving leverage and the extended reach of the anvil plate suggests it was designed for commercial or industrial use. In my opinion, at the time the P4 and the P1 were two of the more innovative stapler designs offered by Bostitch. They took the power of a tacker and applied it for stapling good, not evil.

detail of J.F. Cavanagh patent 2,095,659 Fastener Applying Device

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, March, 30, 2009.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Markwell RTP

Markwell RTP steel chrome finish

Markwell RTP steel chrome finish

The Markwell RTP is remarkable for its ornate engraved decoration announcing everything you need to know about it. This engraving lets you know which and how many staples you'll use, how far you have to insert the paper to put your staple up to 4 inches from the edge, where you need to press to operate the stapler and perhaps most importantly "RTP" is the nickname you'll use for your Markwell stapler. I can't say what "RTP" is short for aside from the fact Markwell used similar model names such as the RX, RF, RB, along with many variations on these model initials by adding extra numbers or letters. In addition to these intitals, some models were also given additional nicknames, such as the Staple-Master, the Pacemaker, the Handi-Clip and the Staple-Robot to name a few. In any case, the RTP is a very memorable stapler.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, March 22, 2009.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- El Casco 85 CT

El Casco 85 CT steel chrome finish

El Casco 85 CT box cardboard printed label

The 85 CT is another amazing El Casco stapler. It may not be the gold plated version, but this chrome plier, like the M1-CA, is quite a statement. My first thought was how closely it resembles the Neva Clog Junior. The 85 CT's construction is a bit more substantial, but it is produced for a luxury market, whereas the Junior was manufactured with utility in mind. The box provides a useful lesson for stapler enthusiasts, because as the art of stapling maybe a universal language, it helps to know the corresponding word for what it is you're speaking.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, March 14, 2009.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Bates 88P

Bates Hand-Grip 88P steel gray and chrome finish

Bates Hand-Grip 88P box printed cardboard

Bates Hand-Grip 88P plastic, steel chrome finish

Somewhere in between Swingline's 99 plier and Cub plier, the Bates Hand-Grip 88P is simple and to the point. It is interesting to contrast these two examples to see how little the more modern plastic and steel example has changed from its all steel predecessor. The interesting feature of all three mentioned staplers is the pierced tab at the back. I've already offered the theory that it's purpose was meant to prevent "office drift," but I ponder whose office it was used in. It's actually small enough to be carried in a pocket and would be classified as a light duty stapler. It may be foolish to wonder at who or what vocation this design was aimed, but it's what I think about in my spare moments. I'm always asking the question, "What would you fasten with this stapler?"

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, March 8, 2009.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Hotchkiss No. 57

Hotchkiss No. 57 steel grey and chrome finish

Hotchkiss No. 57 steel black and chrome finish

Hotchkiss No. 57 box cardboard with printed paper label

These examples of the Hotchkiss No. 57 join the No. 52 and No. 54 in the series but at first glance they reveal only superficial differences between models. The No. 57 uses a slightly narrower gauge 1/8" staple, where as the No. 52 and No. 54 share 3/16" or 1/8" staples. The instructions included in the No. 52 and No. 57 boxes references the method to clear jammed staples "by placing a pencil between the jaws of the plier and compressing the handles" at which point "the patented spring front plate comes into play allowing the crumpled staples to be ejected." The No. 54 is not mentioned in these instructions and this led me to notice a small button located just behind the jaw which when depressed takes the place of the pencil in ejecting a jammed staple. This button is also found on the Elastic Juwel, which leads me to believe it's taken from the German design. All in all another fascinating chapter in the Hotchkiss story.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, February 18, 2009.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Swingline Cub Plier

Swingline Cub Plier steel chrome and green finish

Swingline Cub Plier steel chrome and green finish

Along with previously featured Swingline Cub staplers, these Cub Pliers not only fall into the "cute" category, but are also perfectly sized for comfort and function. When held in one's palm, the user's thumb and index finger naturally fall into position in the indents on the top and bottom of the stapler. The Cub Plier features a punched tab at the rear to enable attaching a chain or string to prevent "office product drift" which tends to occur in the workplace. As with all Cub examples, Cub or no 77 staples are required, for which I am still searching for a equivalent source as Swingline has discontinued production and sold off all surplus stock. I have not seen enough examples to speak to the color variety, although a recent eBay auction featured an orange Cub Plier, which in my experience is an uncommon color. Crate and Barrel's trendy subsidiary, CB2, is peddling a modern orange Swingline. Although, I can't say it'll be on my wish-list.

Image from a eBay auction offered by Mitchell's Memorabilia Company.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, February 12, 2009.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Novus B 22

Novus B 22 steel two tone grey and chrome finish

Novus B 22 box printed cardboard

There seems to be a pattern in my stapler collecting. A lot of my favorite staplers designs come from German designers or manufacturers and Novus has been making staplers there since 1949. Along with Novus, Leitz and the previously featured Elastic are some other German stapler manufacturers of note. The Novus B22 is a straight-forward design, staples load in front by operating catch in rear, conversion to tacking means merely opening up the stapler and switching from staple to pin requires only to move the anvil in the desired direction. Nothing too fancy here, but the muted greys are soothing and very pleasing to the eye.

Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, January 26, 2009.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Hotchkiss 122A & 122-P

Hotchkiss 122-P steel chrome and grey finish

Hotchkiss 122-P box cardboard with printed paper label

Hotchkiss 122-A steel, pot metal, and plastic black finish

Hotchkiss 122A box printed cardboard

Here is a comparison of two different versions of the Hotchkiss 122 series manufactured in two different eras. I first consulted my wife/resident objects expert regarding the 122A and the first words out of her mouth were, "war-time relic." Rationing applied to all the essentials of life such as food, clothing and yes even stapling. I've seen Swingline staplers from the same era made from similar materials including bakelite and even wood. The 122-P by contrast has very little in variety of material. It's design is the same with the exception of it's plier stapler foot, but the construction is a bit more refined. A comparison of the box designs is also of some interest. The 122A box is simply printed cardboard box whereas the 122-P has a two part box with a printed paper label attached. Another example of this style of box can be found with the Hotchkiss No. 52, Stapler of the Week, January 19, 2008. All in all two very interesting staplers and as the nickname "Bantam" suggests, they're small yet powerful.
Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, January 19, 2009.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Stapler of the Week Archive- Arrow 210

Arrow 210 green and chrome finish

The Arrow 210 was introduced to me last fall by a fellow stapler enthusiast but I hadn't come across an example until recently. The 210 was most likely designed and manufactured in good old Brooklyn, NY and has a few really interesting features that sets it apart from other desktop models. The most interesting has to be the anvil plate which is triangular in shape and offers not just two but three staple settings: staple, pin and temporary staple. Staples load from the rear, the top opens with the release seen on the side and to top it all off, instead of simply hinging open for tacking, the entire top comes off. Another notable feature of this 210 is the area on top of the stapler holds a plastic plaque which could be engraved with your company name. On the whole it is quite a nice desktop stapler.

Excerpt from The Stapler of the Week, January 5, 2009.