I am not a calligraphist, but I'll attempt calligraphy sometime soon for letter writing and pure fun. So feel free to make fun of my awkward line variations in the writing sample. Actually, many of those jumps between thick and thin lines were unintentional since I'm getting used to this pen.
Before I get to the pen itself, I have to say that the pen's box is really really cool! I love the whole whaling theme! Maybe someday soon I'll get around to reading Moby Dick while taking notes with the Ahab.
Dark red with swirls of dark dark dark green striations. This will be a pen I'll especially use for the winter holiday seasons. Honestly, I can't help but think of Christmas decorations when I stare at this pen.
I like the silver cap ring and clip. There's nothing overly fancy about them, they're labeled "NOODLER'S INK" and nothing else. The steel nib has the same labeling.
Contrary to the many review I've read about the Ahab's clip, I actually like the clip's whale themed design.
Here is a picture of the pen with my other "Christmas color" pens (is blue a holiday color? oh well)
Weight: Feathery light.
The cap clip is springy and won't fray the material it's clipped onto.
The vegetal resin certainly doesn't feel as durable as my stainless steel pens, my acrylic pen, or my plastic Lamy Safari. I read on a review somewhere that the material is dentable with a fingernail. I tested this by pressing my fingernail against the pen with plenty of pressure and did find a dent, but the dent was very shallow. Actually, I'm looking at my pen now and I cannot find the dent. Perhaps I cut into some dust or overlaying oils (I touched the pen after eating some chips, forgive my slobbiness).
This pen is definitely wide and thick. This may turn off people with small hands, but the pen's girth really isn't a problem when you account for this pen's nearly non-existent weight.
I heard about Noodler pens leaking so I did a "leak test". I put the pen nib-facing-down in my pocket and walked around my neighborhood and ran up and down the stairs of my house while doing some chores. The pen did not leak for some reason, this gives me some confidence in using this pen as a daily writer without having to worry about getting ink all over my clothes.
The pen will cough up a few drops of ink if you shake it a few times with your hand, but you have to shake the pen with a conscious effort. I think this is normal behavior for many pens. My Japanese Sailor-Sheaffer and USA Sheaffer 440 pens will spill a few drops of ink when shaken vigorously up and down. I wouldn't worry about using the Ahab as an edc pen. The ink won't spill if you're walking around town. Just don't do any activities that involve shaking a lot like mechanical bull riding or jumping jacks.
Oh boy, this is where all the calligraphists shake their heads at me.
I was expecting some scratchiness with the nib. After all (I think), this pen was designed for flex and not daily writing. To my delight, the Ahab's nib is actually very smooth! Flexing wasn't an issue for me, I actually ended up flexing the nib on accident quite a few times. I guess I don't have a light writing hand after all. Well, it's either that or this nib is easy to flex. I wouldn't classify this nib as "rigid" or a "nail."
I did 30 short downstrokes with this pen to test for railroading instances. Only 2 out of the 30 instances expressed railroading.
(not the most scientific way of testing a flex pen, but I'm new to these kinds of pens)
Since this pen doesn't have serious leaking problems, I wondered if I could use this pen for note taking and math scribbling. I wrote with less pressure to achieve a fine line and compared the Ahab's fine line width capability with my Japanese Sailor-Sheaffer's fine nib.
I enjoy smooth and wet medium nibs for notetaking outside of the lecture hall. I love sitting back, listening to music, and taking my time with my studies (even if I find my studies to be BORING, at least fountain pens make studying pleasurable).
I compared the Ahab's thicker line capabilities (requires very little pressure, no strain on the hand was felt) to my medium nib pens.
Here is a picture of the pens altogether, just for the heck of it.
This pen does require patience. I spent a loooong half-hour setting the nib and feed to my liking. However, the time spent getting to know this pen is worth it. After tinkering with this pen you'll gain some knowledge on nib/feed setting, eyedropper conversion,and nib swapping. If you're seeking a cheap daily writer and you don't care about line variation, then at this price point I recommend NOT buying this pen.
If you're like me and you're looking for a cheap gateway to flex pens, then I highly recommend buying this pen.
If you care about line variation but at the same time desire a daily writer, then this pen is suitable but you'll have to be careful to not vigorously shake it. And by vigorous, I mean shaking the pen in the same way mad dictators shake whatever is in their hands when making violent gesticulations during rants.
I love this pen. My desire for more pens has diminished greatly ever since I got a hold of this beauty. I have my workhorse pens and a pen with enough flex for my preferences that can also double as a daily workhorse.
Edited by apkayle, 01 June 2013 - 00:28.