The secrets of celluloid

The versatile and transformative material for Montegrappa pens


In 1869 the intuition of the American John Hyatt led to the birth of celluloid: a colorless, transparent and flammable plastic material, obtained by the process of gelatinization of nitrocellulose along with alcohol and camphor.

Elastic, shock resistant and extremely pleasant to the touch, celluloid is configured as one of the most chosen raw materials to give body to the precious Made in Italy fountain pens: Montegrappa celluloid pens are sure of style and personality, color and elegance.

The celluloid for pens allows a wide range of colors and ensures stability to the production process, standing as a leading material in the world of fountain pens that meet the criteria of high quality craftsmanship and refined beauty.


The history of celluloid

From raw material to processing

The development of celluloid as a material that we know today kicks off around 1845, as a response to the need of the industrial world to find a new substitute for some materials of natural origin that were beginning to run out and, Consequently, to greatly increase their price, such as the turtle, ivory and mother-of-pearl.

Everything begins with cotton, which is treated with nitric acid and sulfuric acid to obtain nitrocellulose, a material processed with camphor alcoholized, hot and under pressure: so you get celluloid, not before having subjected the material to a hardening process, which makes it stable, ready to be worked with the lathe, both hot and cold.


Celluloid for industrial use

The mass production of products

In 1869 the patent was registered for this material with a thousand uses, but only in 1890 the celluloid was chosen for the mass production of many products because it is able to take the appearance of very valuable materials such as horn, ivory, precious, semi-precious stones, coral.

In its natural state, celluloid is a semi-transparent, straw-yellow material with a gelatinous consistency. With the simple addition of dye, however, you can get an infinite variety of colors and patterns: a celluloid fountain pen can take on a striped, marbled, mottled and much more.

The celluloid is produced in sheets and is then transformed into bars that undergo a period of aging that can last up to a year. The bars then pass from the maturation period to the drying phase. They are then cut to size to be better worked according to the objects that will take shape.


Celluloid Montegrappa

The brilliant look of precious fountain pens

Montegrappa subjects the celluloid to a particular drying process, in which the material is perforated to allow better ventilation: during the drying phase, which usually lasts six months, constant in-depth chemical analyses are carried out to monitor the moisture of the material and thus obtain a perfect celluloid fountain pen.


Worked celluloid for wrapping

With the wrapping we proceed to the processing of a 2/3 mm celluloid sheet that is cut into long strips and rolled around a rod or passed through a cone. You get a tube to glue to the shape and leave to dry for 20 days. In this way the color will be uniform over the entire body of the pen, without wasting material.

Worked celluloid for turning

With this type of processing, performed strictly by hand, you can work only small amounts of material at a time, giving rise to the most varied forms of pens. The limited editions Montegrappa, the rare pens from the most precious and particular collection are thus born, from the meticulous processing Made in Italy of celluloid blocks.


Celluloid fountain pen: the advantages

Why choose celluloid fountain pens

The properties of celluloid are numerous and all extremely useful to the point of making it one of the favorite materials for the creation of Montegrappa fountain pens that resist the use and time.

It is a material that is easily colored and lends itself, therefore, to the creation of valuable writing instruments in different colors and with drawings that otherwise would be difficult to replicate.

Celluloid has a totally hypoallergenic composition: there is no danger that it is harmful to health.

In addition, to its long list of capabilities is added that of being able to partially absorb the moisture of the hands, returning to the touch a pleasant feeling: a really important skill when it comes to selecting the material of an object that will be held for a long time.

And then celluloid is characterized as one of the most impact-resistant materials, a useful feature when it comes to pens.

Celluloid is therefore an absolutely "resilient" material, which is well suited to different shapes and situations.


Montegrappa celluloid pens are the choice of style and quality oriented towards a material with a thousand uses, with many nuances: a solid and infinitely creative for the many souls of Montegrappa, a kaleidoscope of emotions to live, to write, holding in your hands the excellence of Made in Italy.