Sheaffer transitioned from the Triumph, with lever and Vacuum-Fil options, to the Touchdown - named for its filler - in 1949. In 1952 the Touchdown was replaced by the Snorkel - also named for its filler. I think the 3 year span of the Touchdown is too brief for such an excellent filling system.
Evidently Sheaffer also felt the Touchdown filler had good legs. In 1953 they revived the filler in the TIPdip line of pens with Cadet and Craftsman models. The only difference between the 2 models is a steel cap on the Craftsman. The TIPdip moniker is from a longitudinal hole through the feed - much like the one for a Snorkel tube. This allows the pen to be filled by submerging only the end of the feed. Similar to the Snorkel system this eliminates wiping the grip section after filling.
I believe this to be the first steel nib pen model offered under the Sheaffer banner. Previously all Sheaffer nibs were 14 karat and any steel or 12 karat nibs were sold under the WASP banner. Like the WASP Addipoint, and the Esterbrook, these nibs are threaded units. Sheaffer offered 16 different points; 5 semi-flexible, 5 flexible and 6 firm. This is a firm fine.
This pen is as close to new condition as any I've ever restored. It was inked at least once though perhaps only once. There is no blemish or flaw. The nib writes a wet, smooth line.
The sac and Touchdown o-ring have been replaced and are guaranteed for at least one year provided inks like Noodler's are strictly avoided.
Length Capped - 132 mm (5.2”) Uncapped - 116 mm (4.6”) Posted - 149 mm (5.9”) Diameter Cap - 12.2 mm (0.48”) Barrel - 11 mm (0.43”)