Onoto Magna Classic Royal Ruby
OK, I'll admit it. I saw the photographs of these on the Onoto website and started drooling. Fortunately for me, these pens became available just as my employer handed me some vouchers as my long service award. Combine them with the discount that Onoto give for members of the WES, and I could just about justify buying this pen. Oh wait, I did.
Appearance and Design 10
This pen is quite a departure from the rest of the line up of the Magna Classics. It is manufactured from a glossy acrylic, with the section being from the same material (in contrast to the black section supplied with some of the other colours). Another difference is that the barrel does not have the usual imprint confirming that you are holding/looking at an Onoto.
The silver furniture provides a striking contrast, and is, in my opinion, far more aesthetically pleasing than gold would have been.
Construction and Quality 9
I have one minor gripe – and it is minor but as you are all pen addicts, you will share my pain. When my pen first arrived, I could not ink it because the barrel stubbornly refused to unscrew. According to David at Onoto, this is sometimes caused by fumes from solvents. After a few frustrating days, and just when I thought I was going to have to give up and send it back, cycles of heat and cold did the trick.
The pen is beautifully finished, with not a manufacturing mark, burr or anything to be found that shouldn’t be. Nothing rattles that shouldn’t – indeed, nothing rattles on this pen. Acrylic it may be, but it doesn’t feel thin or brittle.
Weight and Dimensions 9
This is a large pen, but very light in weight for the size. However, I comfortably use it for all day writing sessions, and while I am currently recovering from a thumb injury, it’s the only pen I can use all day. But fortunately, I have had the pen for long enough to say that for me the balance is perfect unposted (the only pen I post is a Kaweco Sport).
Nib and Performance 10
The nib in this pen was ground to a CI for me by John Sorowka (included in the overall cost of the pen), and as John has worked on several nibs for me and knows what I like, I would have been very disappointed if it hadn’t been just right when I inked the pen.
I needn’t have worried, it is perfect for me. Apologies for the writing sample, but my writing is very poor at the moment due to a) the thumb injury and lack of sleep.
The nib is smooth, and glides over the paper with a tiny amount of feedback. It’s a wet writer, but that’s how I like them.
Filling System and Maintenance 10
What can I say? It’s a cartridge convertor. I haven’t experienced a problem with it, and should one occur, I know what to do. I have found that these pens are easier to flush than many others out there, so that’s a bonus.
Cost and Value 9
Oh how I would love to give this a score of 10. But I can’t – it is an expensive pen, but a very beautiful pen that writes flawlessly.
However, it arrived well packed in a stunningly beautiful and simple box, burr walnut I believe. This almost pushed this score back to a 10.
A strikingly beautiful, albeit expensive pen, which writes flawlessy. The Magna Classics are pens that look beautiful, not pieces of jewellery that happen to write.