About a year and a half ago I got my first oversize Balance, it was my black one.
Then a friend told me he has the stripped one and the Abalone Pearl was soon to follow.
I love the shape of these pens (maybe because they were the prototype to the MB 149).
The Balance truly has a fantastic Balance. This pen was designed with amazing precision to fit the hand of its user. With out a doubt one of the most comfortable pens ever made.
It is light weight, perfectly balanced and has the perfect lines to sit comfortably in the hand.
The nibs are a bit different between the 3 models. The black Balance has a big 14k single tone nib.
The other two has a 2 tone 14k smaller nibs.
I personally like the single tone nib because it is bigger but to be honest all 3 nibs feels very close related. They are nails with no attempt to be flexible. They are very smooth of course and nicely wet even though I personally like nibs wetter then that but I believe most people would love the nib as is.
The nib demands no pressure to write and that is very important for me. When a nib is so stiff then it has to float over the paper and these nibs deliver.
There is a nice feedback to these nibs, actually more feedback then most new nibs I encountered.
The black pen is my favorite to use simply because I like using black pens that draw little attention.
The stripped pen is beautiful and is a classic Sheaffer colour pattern.
It looks just like many other smaller size Balances Sheaffer produced at the time.
The Pearl Abalone on the other hand is a true looker and is also the most expensive one of the bunch. I understand Sheaffer put pieces of Abalone shell in the resin and they look like they are floating in the body, very stunning pen. The Abalone pen also has an interesting feature, it doesn’t has the white dot on the cap which makes it more rare and desirable.
The filling mechanism is the bullet proof lever filler. The pens hold a lot of ink for a non piston pen. Nothing much to add to this as this is a functional and reliable filler.
There are a lot of Balance pens out there but I never liked the standard size because I found them to be too small for my hands. These O/S size is perfect for me, the black pen is 5 ¾” capped (14.6cm) the other 2 are just a bit smaller. If you find the standard size a bit too small go and get yourself the O/S size and I promised you you will not be sorry. If you don’t want to spend too much money the black O/S Balance is easier to find and isn’t too expensive.
I think Sheaffer changed a lot in the pen industry with the Balance. I believe until today you can see the basic Balance design in many pens but very few really are as good as this pen.
Edited by goodguy, 02 July 2008 - 14:23.