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Pilot Custom 823


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#1 jandrese

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 16:24

This is a quick review of the Pilot Custom 823 clear demonstrator with medium nib. This big pen with a big nib may be the world’s most perfect pen. Nib adjustment and ink flow are perfect, and I mean fantastic right out of the (very nice) presentation box. The vacuum filling system holds a lot of ink and the tank can be totally sealed off. The grip section is very comfortable to hold. The pen is lightweight but feels solidly built and balance is good with the cap posted or not. The clip is large, strong, and functional yet is elegantly shaped. The large cap band reeks of quality and the cap insert joins seamlessly with the grip section to seal the nib off from the air. This combined with the filling system make this pen ideal for air travel; the pen, when sealed off at both ends cannot leak. As can be seen in the photos the ink chamber is difficult to totally clean out, but this pen is a user and so what if the lubricant in the barrel stains a little, it gives it character.

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The large 14K monotone nib is soft, smooth, wet (but not too wet), responsive, and unflappable. This may be the finest production nib available today, and it rivals the best ever. There is a solid feeling of durability and quality on every millimeter of this pen. A classic cigar shape that pretty much copies a Montblanc 146 this pen offers arguably superior quality at around ½ the price. This particular model of the 823 is in limited supply in the USA, less than 100 or so was made available here. Like the other 832 pens this comes with a bottle of Pilot ink but in this case it is the iroshizuku kon-peki ink instead of the much less exciting Pilot black. As most of us know, kon-peki is a very nice blue and like all the iroshizuku inks is quite expensive on its own.

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An awesome pen well packaged with a special bottle of ink make this a nearly unbelievable value.

Edited by jandrese, 10 March 2010 - 17:43.


#2 Patrick L

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 16:35

This is a quick review of the Pilot Custom 823 clear demonstrator with medium nib. This big pen with a big nib may be the world’s most perfect pen. Nib adjustment and ink flow are perfect, and I mean fantastic right out of the (very nice) presentation box. The vacuum filling system holds a lot of ink and the tank can be totally sealed off. The grip section is very comfortable to hold. The pen is lightweight but feels solidly built and balance is good with the cap posted or not. The clip is large, strong, and functional yet is elegantly shaped. The large cap band reeks of quality and the cap insert joins seamlessly with the grip section to seal the nib off from the air. This combined with the filling system make this pen ideal for air travel; the pen, when sealed off at both ends cannot leak. As can be seen in the photos the ink chamber is difficult to totally clean out, but this pen is a user and so what if the lubricant in the barrel stains a little, it gives it character.

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The large 14K monotone nib is soft, smooth, wet (but not too wet), responsive, and unflappable. This may be the finest production nib available today, and it rivals the best ever. There is a solid feeling of durability and quality on every millimeter of this pen. A classic cigar shape that pretty much copies a Montblanc 146 this pen offers arguably superior quality at around ½ the price. This particular model of the 823 is in limited supply in the USA, less than 100 or so was made available here. Like the other 832 pens this comes with a bottle of Pilot ink but in this case it is the iroshizuku kon-peki ink instead of the much less exciting Pilot black. As most of us know, kon-peki is a very nice blue and like all the iroshizuku inks is quite expensive on its own.

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An awesome pen well packaged with a special bottle of ink make this a nearly unbelievable value.


You reaaly like clear demonstrators Jon.

#3 dizzypen

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 16:38

Thanks for the review. Sounds like you really love this pen.

One quick note you mean Pilot 823 rather than 832. ;)
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#4 jandrese

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 16:46

Thanks for the review. Sounds like you really love this pen.

One quick note you mean Pilot 823 rather than 832. ;)



right! wonder if i can correct that?

#5 dizzypen

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 16:48

You can.

Click the edit button and then click the use full editor button. You can correct the title that way.
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#6 Mr Ink

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 17:00

Nice pen! Can you please include some writing samples just to see how thick that medium nib writes?

#7 enricof

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 17:56

Well done, Jon.

I'll try to add a small contribution.

I have all the three versions (pics and writing samples here), but the clear one is my favorite and most used.

The only problem I found is the ink trapped behind the inner cap, but, as you said, it's a user pen and it just add a bit of character.

Disassembling to clean the barrel is not a big issue, you can find  this useful to put everything back together.

A few more pics "in the wild" here, here and here (always inked with Montblanc White Forest).



If only they made a white trim clear version...


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#8 jandrese

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 18:24

Well done, Jon.

I'll try to add a small contribution.

I have all the three versions (pics and writing samples here), but the clear one is my favorite and most used.

The only problem I found is the ink trapped behind the inner cap, but, as you said, it's a user pen and it just add a bit of character.

Disassembling to clean the barrel is not a big issue, you can find  this useful to put everything back together.

A few more pics "in the wild" here, here and here (always inked with Montblanc White Forest).



If only they made a white trim clear version...



Thanks for the links. I was just wondering about taking the pen apart for cleaning.

#9 Tumbleweedtoo

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 20:50

Great Review! Thanks! I simply cannot get enough writing time with my 823 and keep looking for more reasons to write with it. It is such a great pen that I really cannot think of a reason to get another 823 and deprive myself the joy of writing with the one I have, the amber color.

All the best,
T

#10 Highbinder

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 21:29

Nice short and sweet review! I notice the ink barrel staining on your pen is the same on mine, much more prone at either end of the barrel (at the plunger seal and at the blind cap) I wonder why that is?

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#11 HenryLouis

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 21:55

awesome photos. I need to get mine soon X:
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#12 jandrese

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 21:57

Nice short and sweet review! I notice the ink barrel staining on your pen is the same on mine, much more prone at either end of the barrel (at the plunger seal and at the blind cap) I wonder why that is?



I don't think my barrel is stained, the lubricant Pilot uses is stained, or has trapped ink within it. The threads at the end of the barrel have also trapped some ink.

#13 Highbinder

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Posted 10 March 2010 - 23:33

the lubricant Pilot uses is stained, or has trapped ink within it.


Damn I bet it is that. Mine exhibits exactly the same patterning. I didn't realise how similar in dimensions the 823 is to a 146!

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#14 Ed Ronax

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 13:13

Nice review, thanks.
And how can this be, because he is the Kwisatz Haderach.


#15 shaqin93

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 13:14

Thanks for the review. I actually like the staining, as it does show a bit of character.

#16 razr

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 15:40

Great review! :thumbup: I'm leaning toward the amber model for my next FP.

#17 Dr Lopez

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 16:22

The blue stains that one sees are ink or lubricant? I did not understand. In any case, can that make difficult to change inks? I mean, when you go from a deep black to a pale purple in the next filling for instance, would not it be the case that your inks get mixed because of improper cleaning? I have much interest in getting this pen but the impossibility of proper cleaning puts me off a bit.
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#18 enricof

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 16:33

The blue you see is not ink-stained barrel.

It is ink-stained lubricant residue.

None of my pen show the issue (well, in the black one it would be very difficult to see), and the quantity involved should not be so large to contaminate the new ink.

Anyway, I think sooner or later all 823's users find that "field stripping" these pens is not only easy, it's also funny...

See my previous post here for some useful links.


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#19 jandrese

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 18:58

The blue stains that one sees are ink or lubricant? I did not understand. In any case, can that make difficult to change inks? I mean, when you go from a deep black to a pale purple in the next filling for instance, would not it be the case that your inks get mixed because of improper cleaning? I have much interest in getting this pen but the impossibility of proper cleaning puts me off a bit.


Enrico is quite correct. The blue stain is ink trapped in the lubricant or lubricant soluble dye dissolved in the lubricant. In any case the amount is not much so I don't think changing inks will be a problem. Unless maybe you go from a super saturated black like Noodler's to a pale yellow or some other extreme. But that would be a problem with any pen.

#20 PatientType

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 19:10

Great Review! Thanks! I simply cannot get enough writing time with my 823 and keep looking for more reasons to write with it. It is such a great pen that I really cannot think of a reason to get another 823 and deprive myself the joy of writing with the one I have, the amber color.

All the best,
T



My excuse was that I'd want to have and use more than one nib size. Ergo, my black 823 is a medium and the amber a broad. You just need to focus on developing your skills at rationalization. In NO time, you'll have all three of the 823 barrel types.

#21 jandrese

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 19:25

Nice pen! Can you please include some writing samples just to see how thick that medium nib writes?



Here is a writing sample

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#22 enricof

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 20:39


Great Review! Thanks! I simply cannot get enough writing time with my 823 and keep looking for more reasons to write with it. It is such a great pen that I really cannot think of a reason to get another 823 and deprive myself the joy of writing with the one I have, the amber color.

All the best,
T



My excuse was that I'd want to have and use more than one nib size. Ergo, my black 823 is a medium and the amber a broad. You just need to focus on developing your skills at rationalization. In NO time, you'll have all three of the 823 barrel types.


I know what you mean.
Having all mediums, they are always inked with difference colors to be free to choose according to morning whim (but often I end with carrying all the three of them...).

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#23 Apotheosis

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 03:20

OMG..this just got me re-opening the box and just staring at this pretty pen..
I've decided, if mine doesnt get sold soon..i'm putting it into my permenant rotation

Thanks Doc for the review..I've linked it to my sale post as I suppose many have no idea what they're missing !
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#24 jandrese

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 04:26

OMG..this just got me re-opening the box and just staring at this pretty pen..
I've decided, if mine doesnt get sold soon..i'm putting it into my permenant rotation

Thanks Doc for the review..I've linked it to my sale post as I suppose many have no idea what they're missing !
leo



actually, your sale posting made me write this review finally. I can't believe your pen has not sold.

#25 reprieve

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 22:30

Jandrese-- What is that pinkish ink (in the M400 BB) in your writing sample?

#26 jandrese

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Posted 13 March 2010 - 00:05

Jandrese-- What is that pinkish ink (in the M400 BB) in your writing sample?



Noodler's Hellfire highlighting ink.

#27 blopplop

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Posted 13 March 2010 - 03:55

Thank you for the review. From the moment I laid eyes on these pens (in a Stylophile's review), I've been wanting to purchase one as an everyday carry around pen. What a beauty!

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#28 kushbaby

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Posted 13 March 2010 - 04:01

Thank you for the review. From the moment I laid eyes on these pens (in a Stylophile's review), I've been wanting to purchase one as an everyday carry around pen. What a beauty!

Dave


So, you've gotten the demonstrator bug, huh? First the Stipula... :D

Edited by kushbaby, 13 March 2010 - 04:01.

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#29 blopplop

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Posted 13 March 2010 - 04:06


Thank you for the review. From the moment I laid eyes on these pens (in a Stylophile's review), I've been wanting to purchase one as an everyday carry around pen. What a beauty!

Dave


So, you've gotten the demonstrator bug, huh? First the Stipula... :D


I confess.... :)

Actually, my problem is that I have several pens that I've considered "grail pens" that I never actually thought I could really own. The 823 happens to be one of them. You know how it goes... :)

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#30 Mr Ink

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Posted 13 March 2010 - 05:52


Nice pen! Can you please include some writing samples just to see how thick that medium nib writes?



Here is a writing sample


Thanks very much - that's very helpful.