Muji Fountain Pens – My Thoughts

Muji is known for its minimalistic and clean design for its products and I for one, adores them very much! I wish I can afford to grab all their stationeries and store them in my room. As much as my desire to buy all of them, they are not cheap though. So I just managed to get their fountain pens, both the compact and full size.

I have owned them for some time. User experience for both of the pens are very good thus far; no major problem with the ink flow nor does the nib is giving out any problem too. They are really good pens and are suitable to be used as everyday carry pen.

The Built

As they are made of aluminium, they are light and sturdy when you hold it in hand, which is something I like about aluminium pens. =) What I don’t like about them? Vulnerable to dents and scratches because they are a rather soft metal. =/

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Both the round and compact has a very tight cap. It will require some effort to remove the cap from the pen, especially the compact, which it spares the worries of the cap falling off without my knowledge. When you put the cap back, you can hear the reassuring ‘click’ sound that tells you that the cap is now secured. The clip of the pen is doing fine with what it is supposed to do. So basically, on this side, I have no complains with it.

Posting the cap?

However, I have some thoughts about posting the cap with the pen. Let’s begin with the full size one. If you take a look at the back of the pen where one usually post the cap while writing, you’ll notice that there is a dedicated section that allows the aluminium cap to slide in, making it appears to be an almost perfectly smooth cylindrical barrel, which is a nice touch. But if you are not being careful with it, it will ended up like mine, dented and I can’t post my cap now. It doesn’t matter to me anyway because I don’t usually post the cap while writing. =)

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And yes, I have something to say about posting the cap for the compact one too. Because the body of the compact is so short, you have no choice but to post the cap while writing with it, unless you have baby’s hand? The problem comes when I posted it; it wobbles. I don’t know about you but it annoys me when it happens. I just don’t like the feeling of the pen wobbling in my hand when I am writing with it; just made me feel insecure, as if the pen going to break into half any moment. =/ I owned two other compact fountain pen, such as the Kaweco Sports and Pilot Petit; the cap posted just nicely. You won’t even have the wobbly feel that the Muji gives you. I think Muji should look into this for the revision of this pen. It’s a beautiful pen, why not make it even better with this minor improvement? =)

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The Nib

Now let’s talk about the nib. I don’t expect that much when I bought the pen because I have never heard of them before and the brand is not solely a pen producing brand. So, really, I am not expecting much from them. They surprise me! It’s really smooth. No head start problem. Ink it up, wait for a few minute for the ink to settle in and you are good to go! The moment you put the nib on the paper, it glides through it smoothly while provides you the necessary feedback. It’s not too wet nor dry, just nice. The nib is what I love about the pen the most. The most. Take a look at the writing sample. Pardon me for my writing. I don’t write that often these days, more like typing. =(

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Overall

As overall, I like the Muji fountain pen. Mainly due to the smoothness of the writing. The writing experience is really great for a pen of that price. However, the built quality is one concern that holds me back from buying a few more copies to keep them. And the price too. It’s about the same as the Pilot Metropolitan and Lamy Safari, which they offer a much better quality for their users. I know it’s unfair to compare the Mujis with these pen producing companies, but since we are talking about pens, I think the comparison should be in place.

Nonetheless, I’d recommend the Muji fountain pens to those who are looking for an economical and affordab;e everyday carry fountain pen. You’d be happy with the smoothness of the pen. =)

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Pilot Metropolitan: Best value for money all-rounder

Pilot Metropolitan Fountain Pen Review

It has been a really long while since I last written a review for the fountain pen that I have.

Life has been busy and now only I managed to find some free time to write down what I think about my pen. I hope this review will be helpful in your decision making of getting one for yourself too! =)

Today I am going to write about a pen that I like very much, the Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen.

I have been using this pen for months to come now and I am confident to say that this is one of the best fountain pen that I have come across. I will tell you why this is the best fountain pen I’ve encountered thus far later.

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First, I will begin with how I get to know them. It all begins with strolling in YouTube, watching reviews of fountain pens, endless of them and building up my own wish list. Haha. Then I came upon this one; the very one that many users are giving many good reviews about it. I told myself that I am going to get one. But since I am in Malaysia, I am often faced with very limited choices of fountain pen that I can get my hands on. So one day when I am just shopping around in a local bookstore, I stopped by a counter selling pens and look for some new pens and guess what, I found it! Surprisingly, it is very affordable! I requested to try the pen, hold them and feel the balance of the pen, and I bought it without writing with it at first. After all, it is a Pilot pen. I have confidence in their quality. =)

This pen is solidly built; it feels sturdy and solid in hand. Some part of the pen is in plastic but most of it are metal, hence the solid feels. Balance of the pen is on point, really, really good. Not very heavy nor thick, just strike the balance very well. You can cap the pen while writing, of which you will feel slightly heavy at the back of the pen, but it will still sit comfortably in your hand because of the balance of the pen.

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Not only that, the cap itself gives a very satisfying click when you close them. It gave you a very secure feeling, of which you don’t have to worry if the cap will fall off in the middle without you knowing it.

You will notice that there is a glossy band at the thickest part of the barrel. That part is the part you get to choose different colour and design. For me, I go for the plain one because the other design is just not my cup of tea. Ha! Quite a number of colours to choose from, you can look it up on Google. =)

Alright, time to talk about the writing experience of this pen.

I bought the medium nib, as usual, but it turned out that although it is a medium nib, it feels very thinner compared to other medium nib pen that I have, such as Cross ATX and Lamy Al-Star. Probably this is because it is a Japan made pen.

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Despite it being thinner and finer than other medium nib pen, it writes very smooth. Very smooth. It doesn’t have any ink start problem too. So you don’t have to worry about leaving your pen uncap for a long time because the ink will just flow whenever you need them to.

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I have been using them for months to come. The more I use it, the more I love it! It is just that good!

I have few things that I am not that happy about though.

First, the grip section is made of plastic and doesn’t feel very good kind of plastic to me. Why is this bothering me? For a pen that cost less than RM50, I won’t be expecting them to use upmarket or high grade metal to make it. The body of the pen is partly metal and because you have to screw down the body onto the grip section, the wear and tear comes to be a big concern to me since the grip section is not made of really good quality plastic like the Lamy Safari. I really hope that this won’t be causing me any problem any time soon because it is still so new.

Second, the converter that comes with it. For a pen that cost less than RM50 and comes with a converter is really something. However, this one that comes with it causes a little concern regarding the fitting of it. When it is fitted in the pen, you can still feel that it will wobbles if you try to push them. Although there is no leaking until now, I wish the converter could fit snuggly into the pen instead of having that extra space for it to wiggle and wobble.

Third, also regarding the converter, is that it can’t support the international standard converter, which is a real headache. Problem with Pilot fountain pen is that they prefer to use their own design of cartridges and converter, which is a huge inconvenient if you need to find replacement parts for the pen. If you really want to get a spare converter, can look for CON-50 as a replacement.

Overall, I still love this pen. It has done a brilliant job by striking a balance between the appearance and the writing experience. Not too heavy, well balanced, smooth writing and affordable. What more can you ever asked for?

Highly recommended.

Suitable for:

Daily use; beginners; for those who look for value for money fountain pen

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Kaweco Skyline Sport Fountain Pen – -I have been itching to write about it!

Hey guys, I’ve been very busy for the past few weeks so there was no blog post. I am back again this week and I’m going to bring you guys a review that I’ve been meaning to write for some time.

I am going to write a review on Kaweco Skyline Sport fountain pen. I first found out about this pen when I am browsing through Pinterest. The moment I saw it I was really attracted to its look. So I went to look it up at Amazon and found it. After factor in all the delivery charges and etc, I figured I’ve got myself a great deal and decided to order it. After about 3 weeks, I’ve got my pen, delivered to my door step all the way from Germany. =)

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It’s box! Paper box but looks really classical! =)

When I got hold of the pen, I was surprised by how small the pen is! It is totally different from what I had imagine. I mean, look at how small it is when I am holding it in my hand! It appears bigger in the photo. Lol. Well, there won’t be any problem if I post the cap on when writing though. Guess it was designed that way. =)

Without the cap posted

Without the cap posted

With the cap posted

With the cap posted

Let’s start with the material. It was made of good quality plastic. How can I tell? Well, I tend to grip on to the pen quite strong whenever I write and with this pen, I can write confidently without worrying that the pen will break in my grip. Lol. Kaweco has this model made with different type of materials, such as aluminium, chrome finishing and many more. Mind you, they have different price tag though and they are not cheap either.

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It has a round barrel and an octagonal shape cap to prevent it from rolling around on the desk, which is really practical. =) Not only that, what I love about this pen is that the cap is a screw cap. Unlike click-off cap that I had with my Cross ATX fountain pen, with a screw cap, I can have less worry of my pen will fall off from the cap whenever I am carrying them with me.

Because it is made of plastic, it is also very lightweight. I can carry it around with ease and write longer with it. However, being very light has good and bad side for it. I will go to the bad side later. =)

The Kaweco Sport is using a short international cartridge for the ink mechanism. It does has a converter; it is a squeeze type converter which is not something that I fancy. There are people who convert it to an eye dropper but I think I just gonna stick to cartridge for the time being. =)

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For those who have followed me for some time, you will know what size of nib I will go for. =) Unlike the other medium nib pens that I have, this one appears drier. Not sure if it is because I haven’t been using it for quite a few months and the nib will need some time to get the ink flowing smoothly again, I had experienced some start-problem with the nib; I have to scribble on a scratch paper before start writing with it. Also, compared to my Cross ATX, you will notice that the amount of ink that was being delivered to the paper by the Kaweco is lesser, which makes it dries faster on the paper.

The top is written using my Kaweco and the bottom is my Cross ATX. Notice the difference in intensity of the ink?

The top is written using my Kaweco and the bottom is my Cross ATX. Notice the difference in intensity of the ink?

Now, I got a few complaints about it. First of all, there is no clips that comes along with the pen which makes it hard for me to clip it on my pocket. It left me no choice but to put it in my pants pocket and I am not that used to it because all the while I’m clipping to my shirt’s pocket. Kaweco does has clip for this model and you have to buy it separately. What? Can’t you gave us along with any purchase of the pen to make it something optional for the users to put it on or not?

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Second, I wish the nib could be just a bit more, wet-ter? A fountain pen should be about effortless writing; the nib should be able to glide across the paper, laying down lines without you having to press the nib hard on the paper. Although this pen tend to have a dry-start problem most of the time when I am about to write, the writing experience of it is still what I would describe as smooth in overall. Not the silky smooth type but it is good enough. Nonetheless, I still wish it could give out a bit more ink every time I write with it.

And last of all, the weight. It is too light for me. It’s like you care carrying a normal ballpoint pen. It’s not a bad thing actually, but if you don’t have a clip on it and the only way you can carry it is to put it in your pocket, being too light might be hard for you to notice its existence.

After all, things that I am complaining are things of a personal preference.

Will I recommend it? Yes. Absolutely! Such a small pen will be good for ladies who can carry it in their small purse. Not only that, it will be good for journal writing as well. If you are in Malaysia and would like to buy them, can head over to Amazon and look for this seller: Seitz Global. I had a very good experience with them and will certainly look for them again for any future purchases. =)

Last but not least, as usual, leave me comment. If you have this pen too, share with me your thoughts about it. If you are about to get one and would like to know more, drop me a comment too. =)

Cheers and see you next week! =)

Pelikan Script – Review

Hello to all who are reading my blog and I can’t describe how happy I am to be back here again! =)

Last week, I wrote a guide on how to choose a fountain pen for yourselves. If you haven’t read about it, click here to check it out! Don’t miss it out! =)

I am back on doing review for this week’s content and I am reviewing a pen that is rather special. Special not in the sense that it is very expensive, but in the sense that it is not very widely available in Malaysia market. And yes, it is the first time for me to own a pen like this.

Pelikan Script 1.5mm calligraphy pen.

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I don’t do calligraphy writing that much so there is not really a need for me to have a calligraphy pen, but well, I’ve always wanted to have one of them. =) One day, I might get myself the Pilot Parallel. =)

So there was this day when I am shopping for ink in one of the local book store, I came across this long-looking pen in the cabinet and was intrigued by it. My curiosity urges me to ask the shop staff to show me the pen. I don’t have a chance to test it out but I thought, hey, how could it go wrong anyway? And since it is not very expensive, I bought it.

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The body of the pen is made of plastic and it is very long. As you can see in the photo comparison between my Cross ATX fountain pen and this Pelikan Script calligraphy pen. Despite the length of the pen, you don’t have to worry about the balance though; I have using it for months and I can write with it comfortably in my hand. The cap of the pen was designed as a click-off cap but you cannot post it at the end of the pen while you are writing.

The nib is available in 3 sizes of which all of them are colour coded; Green for 1.0mm, Blue for 1.5mm and Red for 2.0mm. For this pen, the nib is not the ordinary size of nib which I think it is broader than the already broad ‘Broad’ size. Therefore, the use of this pen is quite limited. It also comes with a long international cartridge and I think it can fits a converter as well. I just need time to find out which converter can fits in. =)

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Let’s start with the good thing about this pen first. I have been using it for months and I am quite pleased with the overall writing experience of this pen. One thing that I love about this pen is the line that it lays on the paper. God it is beautiful! I love the line variation! Looking at how the line changes its width when it curves and bends just take my breath away, although I am not a calligrapher. But boy, I just love the line variation of this pen!

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Second thing about this pen is the design and weight. I like the long design of this pen that was made to resemble the element of a quill, which gives me some kind of vintage feels whenever I am writing with it. Plus, what I like about the design is the balance that it gave me. Its lightness enables me to write longer than usual without causing much fatigue to my hand. And if you think that the longer part of the pen will make the rear end of the pen heavier, you will be surprised. The pen is very well balanced.

What I don’t like about it?

The length of the pen. This pen is suitable for everyday use but the length makes it hard to be stored and carry it around.

Second thing that I don’t like about it is that it is built of plastic. I know, with this price, it is reasonable. But somehow I wish it could be aluminium like Lamy Al-Star, I don’t mind pay more for it, really.

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It’s hard to find things that I don’t like about this pen. I am just being nitpicky though. Overall, I like this pen. I like how it feels and writes. If you ask whether would I recommend it? Yes, I would. Please, get yourself one too. Hee. By saying so, I must also remind you that personally, I don’t think this is suitable for everyday writing for school or office because this type of nib is considered as something fancy and I don’t think it would be suitable to be used in the school or office. Unless you are in creative line of job. =)

Is it affordable? Yes! It is not very expensive for a fountain pen; I bought this for about RM18, if my memory serves me right.

So, this is it, my review for Pelikan Script 1.5mm.

I hope you enjoy this review. If you have any suggestion on how I can further improve my review, feel free to write me a comment and I will see what I can do about it. =)

Look forward to hear from you.

Thanks and see you next week! =)

Cheerio!

How to choose a fountain pen

Guide on how to choose a fountain pen

Hello readers!

I hope last week’s writing on the introduction of fountain pen will provides you some basic entry level information on what you have to know about a fountain pen. This week, I will write a guide that shall provide you some tips on how to choose the right fountain pen for yourself. Being an avid writer, I appreciates all my pens that I am using in my writing. Every time I am writing, I love how the pen is laying out the inks in line on the paper, giving the sensation that I am creating a piece of art on the paper. Although these days I am working along with my mechanical keyboard more than my fountain pens, my love for pens is still as strong as before. =)

Today, I am going to write about how to choose the right fountain pen for yourself. Why is that so important? Having the right pen is important because it is a tool for you to express yourself and when you are expressing yourself, you have to be comfortable with it. Apart from choosing the design of the pen, the most important thing about fountain pen that you have to consider seriously is the nib size. Now, if you are using a fountain pen and you are not comfortable with the nib, your handwriting will then go wrong, the purpose will then be defeated and the writing sensation will be gone too, along with everything else, except maybe for the look of it.

Now, let’s cut the chase and get right to the point. How do I choose the right nib?

Take a look into your handwriting. If you have a small handwriting, you will be needing a fine nib for it instead of medium or broad which will gives out too much ink and you won’t be able to see a word that you are writing. On the other hand, if your handwriting is of medium size or big, then medium and broad will be the right choice for you.

Then, think about how you would use your fountain pen. Will you be using them on a daily basis for general writing purposes? If you are, then fine and medium nib will serve the purpose. If you are using them for journal writing, then you may consider of using fine or medium nib. However, you may also consider of using calligraphy nib which will appears broader and will give you more line variation when you are writing, thus can give you more feeling in your writing. If the purpose of using fountain pen is to sign documents, then you shall go for medium or broad nib.

Written using Cross ATX Fountain pen, medium nib, Cross Black ink.

Sample writing using Cross ATX Fountain pen, medium nib,
Cross Black ink.

I mentioned about calligraphy pen just now. Technically, it is still a fountain pen, except that the nib is wider in size, some of them starting at 1.0mm and above. With this sizes, the line that you draw on the paper will appears broader than the usual fountain pen. when it is being used for writing, it can creates variation of lines which is very good for calligraphy writing. There are few brands and types of calligraphy pens that are quite famous in the market that you can give them a try, like the Pilot Parallel Calligraphy pen. Not sure if you can get them in store in Malaysia but I am sure that you can get them online. If you managed to find them being sold in the bookstores in Malaysia, please share with me. I would like to buy one of them as well. =)

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Sample writing using Pelikan script 1.5, calligraphy pen. Nib width: 1.5mm.

 

Personally, my favourite choice of nib size is medium. Mainly is because I will be using them on daily basis; yes, I have the habit of carrying a pen with me every time I am out of the house. Second, my handwriting size isn’t what people would call small and it is not too big either. On top of that, I am using my pen for signature as well, which if I am using a fine nib, the line will be too fine to be seen clearly and if I am using the broad nib, then it will be too bold that some of the line that should be thin will appear thick as well. Hence, after taking all these into considerations, I have decided that I will go for the medium nib. I have about 6 fountain pens now and all of them are of medium nib and one calligraphy pen.

Now, after you have chosen the right nib size for yourself, you might want to think about the ink system to go along with your pen. For instance, are you going to use cartridge on your fountain pen or you are going to use a converter? The advantages of a cartridge is that it will gives you a lot of convenience when it comes to changing the ink; all you have to do is to pull out the finished cartridge and plug in a new one and you are ready to go again. But the down side of it is that cartridges are not very environmentally friendly, in my opinion; they are made of plastic and everything the ink finishes, you have to throw them away. What a waste! Also, it is not very economical in the long run. A pack of it will gives you 6 cartridges with a price of about RM5. It might sound cheap now but mind you, they don’t last very long and you have to change the cartrigde quite often. On top of that, the choice for the colour of ink that comes in cartridges are extremely limited and hard to find. Thus, when it comes to this reason, many people will tend to go for the converter. Using a converter gives you the freedom to use basically any ink that you can get your hands on; regardless of the colour and the brand of the ink, it just doesn’t matter; all you have to do is to plug the converter in, plunge the pen into the ink bottle and start to pump up the inks into your pen.

In a nutshell, you will have to assess the size of your handwriting and the purpose of which you are going to use your fountain pen in, to decide which fountain pen would suits you best.

So this is it. I hope this piece of article will helps you in choosing the right fountain pen for yourself.

As usual, if you have any comments, questions or suggestions that I can make this blog more informational and helpful, please by all means write me a comment and I will get back to you as soon as possible. =)

Cheerio!

Yours truly.

Introduction and guide to fountain pen

Hello hello hello! Welcome back to Pen-o-holic! I hope you enjoy my previous post on the review of Cross ATX fountain pen. If you haven’t read about it, you can click here to find them. =)

While I am preparing for my next pen review, I noticed that there are many people out there who still don’t know about fountain pen; some of them haven’t even heard or seen one before in their life. So, I have been giving it a thought for some time and have decided that I will write an introduction to fountain pen, hoping that I will be able to lure more people to join me with my latest addiction. Ha!

So, let’s get started!

I will begin with some history of fountain pen. When I started to know what is a pen, when I am still little, the pen that I am using and holding in my hand was a ballpoint pen. The normal and less-than-a-dollar pen that can be easily found in any bookstore or stationary stores. Then as I grew up, during history lessons, I learnt that human being begin writing by carving it onto something; wood, stone, bamboo, and some even do it on leather. Further then, in the movies, I learnt about quill pen, or what most of the people would recognize as the feather pen, because well, it is made of real feather. After quill pen, then there is the born of fountain pen. As far as record was retrieved, it was believed that the first concept of fountain pen was born in the 10th century, when there is a demand for a pen that won’t stain the writer’s hand or clothes; as a result of that demand, is a pen that is able to hold its own ink reservoir and able to deliver to the nib when writing is required. Apart from that, the ink won’t leak even when it is being hold upside down. There, ladies and gentlemen, is the born of fountain pen.

There are several distinctive features about a fountain pen. For instance, the point of the pen which delivers ink to the papers, is known as the nib. The nib is like the soul of the fountain pen; it is that important that if you have spoil the nib, the pen won’t be able to writing anything properly anymore. There are people however, have made some tutorials on how you can mend your nibs, which you can look for in Youtube. For me, I would have prevent that from happening in the first place though, to spare the pain of all the repairing process.

Normally, fountain pen will comes in 3 sizes of nibs; fine, medium and broad. The width of fine nib is around 0.45mm, plus minus; medium nib is between 0.55mm-0.60mm and broad nib is about 0.70mm-0.80mm, or more or less like that. There are many pen makers out there and when it comes to the width of the tip, they don’t have a standard measurement to that. Also I would like to note that Japanese fountain pen makers used to have a finer line that any other pen makers. You will notice that Japanese pen maker like Pilot has a thinner line even though it is a medium nib, compared to other pen maker of the same nib size. Hence, my advice is that when you are buying your own fountain pen, test them out to make sure that the width of the nib is to your liking, otherwise you will be wasting your money.

This is the nib. Amazing isn't it? What a piece of art. =)

This is the nib. Amazing isn’t it? What a piece of art. =)

Apart from the nib, another features of fountain pen is that it has its own ink reservoir. There are few types of ink supply that you can get for your fountain pen: a cartridge, a converter and built-in piston. Cartridge and converter are more commonly found in the market. Fountain pen that comes with built-in piston are rarer in the market though. Cartridge is a plastic ink container that is very easy to use; just plug it into your fountain pen and you are ready to go. Once the ink is finished, pulled out the cartridge and replace it with a new one and you are ready to go again. All in all, process will take less than a minute. However, there are limitations with using a cartridge; for users that want to try out more colours in their writing, they will find that the colour choices for cartridges are pretty limited. Therefore, this is the part where most of the user will switch to converter.

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A normal short international standard cartridge.

 

Using a converter requires a more delicate process. Why is it called converter in the first place? It is basically an ink piston that draws ink into fountain pen. Yes, it is. The reason it is being called a converter is because it is an accessory that can convert cartridge compatible fountain pen to be a piston-filled compatible fountain pen. The good thing about a converter is that it can be reused for many time to come, which proved to be more economical for fountain pen user in the long run. And it is more environmentally friendly too, I believe; you don’t have to throw away the plastic cartridge every time it finishes. Another plus point of using a converter is there are more choices in terms of ink brands that you can use and the colour as well. For instance, say you are using a Parker fountain pen, you may not be necessarily using Parker brand ink; you can use inks from other brands as well, as long as you like the colour of it, then all is well. But I do wish to note that some pen maker will tells you that they encourage their pen user to use the ink of their own brand, reason being they are worried that the composition of the inks of other brands might cause unwanted reaction with your nib and hence damaged it. But well, as long as your perform maintenance on your fountain pen regularly and keeping them in tip top condition, you can have a peace of mind over that.

There are several downside to using a converter though; for instance, the hassle that it takes to refill the pen when the ink finishes. You have to be very careful so that the ink won’t spill over your tables or stain your hand or clothes upon refilling. Another downside to using a converter compared to a cartridge is the ink capacity; the ink capacity of a converter is comparatively smaller than a cartridge, but the difference is really very little, so, you don’t have to sweat about that. =)

Photo courtesy of Louis Vuitton.

This is a sample of how a converter looks like. Photo courtesy of Louis Vuitton.

The last is the built-in ink piston which is lesser to be found in the market. Its function is the same with the converter, except this one is built in and no, you can’t simply remove them and use a cartridge instead. There is an upside to this however; the ink capacity is higher in this one. Significantly higher than the other two. I don’t have one like this at the moment but I look forward to own one in the future. =)

Photo courtesy of TWSBI

Photo courtesy of TWSBI

In a nutshell, a fountain pen has its own ink reservoir and it has a nib that delivers the ink to the paper that you are writing on. Cartridges is the most convenient way to your pen filled up; converter gives you more choice on the colour, is much economical in the long run and much environmentally friendly as well; built-in piston does provides you bigger ink capacity.

So, how much difference it is compared to ballpoint pen?

Ballpoint pen is an advancement of fountain pen. It carries its own ink, it won’t leak, easy to carry around (you don’t have to worry about the pressure of the surrounding as if it will affect the ink flow of your pen). People like that and above all, because it is very affordable and easy to obtain, it has become the most commonly used type of pen in probably the whole world. Thus, it has make fountain pen almost obsolete in this era. In terms of convenient and affordability, fountain pen is behind ballpoint pen.

In these days, fountain pen still remains, mainly I think is because there are many out there who still appreciates art, for it is a piece of art and a creator of art.

I love fountain pen so much because the writing sensation that it gave me is irreplaceable. The user experience is magical. When the ink is finished, you have to fill them up. Then from time to time, you will have to do the maintenance of the pen to keep it in tip top condition. I felt more connected with my pen comparing to when I am using ballpoint.

They are just wonderful.

So this is it, the introduction of fountain pen. Next week, I will write on tips on choosing the right fountain pen. Stay tuned. =)

As usual, if you have followed me until this part, I would like to thank you for your interest and support in my humble blog. I would like to further invite you to drop me any comment that you have for me, whether on how I can further improve this blog and what you would like to see from me in the future.

I look forward to hear from you soon.

Cheers, yours truly.

Cross ATX fountain pen review

Hola fellow readers! Welcome to Pen-o-holic and this very very first review of mine.

Today, I am going to bring you the review of my very first fountain pen, the Cross ATX fountain pen. For this pen, the colour is basalt black with chrome finishing. I fell in love with this pen when I first saw it. I mean, look at the matt black body with the chrome finishing. Such a gorgeous! For this pen, I must thank a group of my dear friends who bought this for me as my birthday gift. It is simply the best present ever! =)

Before I go further into the pen, let’s take a look at some detail of the pen:

Cross ATXFirst off, it looks absolute fantastic to me! The build quality is really solid and heavy even without the cap on. The finishing of the pen made is much durable and you can worry less about having it scratched easily against anything when you put it inside a bag or something. I don’t have a pen collector box to store my pens, so for now I am putting them in a box which comes with pens that I have purchased, as long as they are protected.

pen-o-holic: Cross ATX Basalt Black

Together, the length and weight of the pen made it possible to rest in my hands comfortably. I can write easily without the cap posted on. Of course, you can write with the cap posted, which will eventually adds some weight to the pen. Most of the time I write without the cap posted at the end, I felt that it gave me more dynamic control over the pen. Good thing about the pen is that even with the cap on, the balance of the pen won’t be off. So it means that when you are writing with the cap on, you don’t have to worry that the rear end of the pen is too heavy and you have to exert more force on the grip, which will grow tiresome as you write. If you prefer heavy pen for your writing, you can always write with the cap on.

pen-o-holic: Cross ATX Basalt Black

pen-o-holic: Cross ATX Basalt Black

For my ink system, I go for the converter. Mainly, I felt that I will have more choices of ink if I am using a converter; I can use inks of other brands if I want to and I don’t have to worry about the compatibility of cartridges if I were to use other brand. Plus, as a regular user, I think going for converter would be more economical and much environmental friendly; cartridges are made for single usage only – you have to throw them away when they are finished. Of course, cartridges will gives you more convenience; you can save the hassle of getting your hand stained with inks during refill and you can carry a spare with you easily when you are travelling. Or, the alternative is that you can use the converter but bring along a cartridge as a spare. It’s your call. =)

pen-o-holic: Cross ATX Basalt Black

Then the nib. It feels great. For this pen, my choice is the medium one as I am looking to use the pen in multiple purposes, such as regular writing and signing documents. Personally I don’t like to sign using a fine pen and regular writing using a broad nib would be too much for me. Hence, I go for the medium one. This nib tends to be a bit on the wet side. As for what I meant by wet is that it disperse quite a lot of ink during writing. This makes you need a thicker paper to write on, probably 80gsm and above would be ideal. If you are using paper of about 70 gsm, you probably might have the problem of ink bleeding.

pen-o-holic: Cross ATX Basalt Black

Speaking of writing, it writes perfectly. The ink flow is smooth and the best thing is that it won’t feel scratchy. Scratchy means when you are writing, the line on the paper will appear ‘disconnected’. Not sure if that description is correct, but what I meant to say is that the flow of ink is really good. However, during my college days, I don’t use fountain pen that often. I will only put them to use when I am in the mood of writing in cursive. Hence, when you have put it aside for some time, the ink on the nib will dry up and will take some time to get it flowing smoothly again; what you can do during this time is that you can push the piston of the converter down or press the cartridge to push the ink to the nib. You will need a piece of paper to write on, ensuring that the ink started to flow again. That’s not a big deal though, because after you left it there for some time without having any ink flowing, the nib will be dry.

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Now, nothing is perfect and I do have some complains about it. First of all, the grip section. Because it is a metal body and there is no grip texture on it, it tends to get slippery after I am writing with it for some time. When that happens, I have to stop my writing, take a cloth and wipe my hand and the pen. For those who have sweaty hand, a cloth on standby will comes in handy.

Second, I don’t like the cap. Not the design, but how it secures my pen. I wish it could be tighter, or it could come with a screw cap, which I am perfectly fine with, although you have to sacrifice the convenient of being able to use the pen with just a pull. For a few times the pen actually fell off from the cap when I am shopping around in shopping mall and passer-by told me about it. I am really lucky, really, although I am quite frustrated by this. =/

Third, the design of the nib. I must admit that I have some OCD. Every single time after a refill, I can’t help but to notice that there is some ink stain left in the lines that resembles an inverted rank chevron. I did of course, tried many times to wipe it off but because the ink feed line is very close to it, every time after I wiped it, it will draw more ink out of it, making it impossible to have a very very clean nib. Wish they could come out with a nib design that is cleaner, or at least easy to clean.

Conclusion:

It is a nice pen to write with. I love the way it looks, feels and most of all, how it writes. Despite the downsides that I have pointed out above, I still love this pen. =)

There are many brand of fountain pens out there and they come in a very wide price range. I can’t recall the price of this one in particular, but the best I could recall is that it is in the range of close to RM300. It is indeed quite pricey for a starter. In the market, there are fountain pens that you can get with as low as RM15, you just have to look for them hard enough. =)

So this is it, my very first review of my very first fountain pen.

Leave a comment if you have any suggestion(s) that can make my review more interesting! =D Would certainly love to hear from you.

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