Zenith 548/E7 gray and blue-gray finish
The Zenith stapler has long been a favorite of mine. Zenith is actually a brand of Balma-Capoduri & C. which also manufactures the popular Italian glue and adhesive brands, Coccoina and Lakol. My love for European office supply design continues and it's actually a shame my enthusiasm developed after my studies abroad in Italy. I had previously compared the Zenith to the Matac 7, another Italian stapler but had not acquired a Zenith until recently. Fortunately I found two different models, the 551 and the 548/E7. There are a few differences between the two, the 551 uses 24/6 & 24/8 staples and the 548/E7 uses 6/6 & 6/8 staples. The 551 is a bit longer than the 548E which perhaps provides the leverage needed to staple 5+ sheets or even thin cards and cardboard.
Zenith keeps updating their plier staplers for the modern age and its markets. The US distribution ranges from design-conscious sellers such as Design Within Reach, boutiques such as LA's Plastica, internet mega-marts such as Amazon, and of course the collector's fix dealer eBay. All I know, is if I'm ever near Voghera, Italy, you can be sure I'll be bringing home an assortment of Zenith staplers.Excerpt from the Stapler of the Week, November 23, 2008.
Zenith 548/E blue and blue-gray finish
Update May 25, 2009: I came across this 548/E and had to include it to represent a "vintage" version. Along with all it's corrosion and patina, this 548/E has a few interesting inscriptions. Like the 551 above it states it is "Importe d'Italie" but on the top it features the phrase blue box in Italian, French, English, and Spanish.