Well, I received this pen months ago. Sadly, I was kept busy by a variety of school projects and have only now come around to write a review. But, on the other hand, this gave me a good amount of time to use the pen and get a good feel for what it offered.
First time I stumbled onto the Pearl and saw the Red and Black Ebonite, I started saving up for the inevitable day that I'd put in my order. But I wanted the exact one in the picture, dual ink windows (it is an eye dropper) and no clip (the reason it has a clip I'll get to later on). The order process was smooth enough, I think Brian was quite busy at this point, there was some 4 or 6 week wait period from the day I put my order in until I was able to receive the pen. I ordered it with an 18k Gold nib ground down to a .5 CI. Soon enough, the pen was mine!
As you can see, just like in Brian's pictures, the pen does shine! I love the ebonite and the feel of the pen is smooooth. The reason I did not want a clip with my pen was because I did not want to feel the connection where the clip gets inserted. Brian must have forgotten about my request and included a clip anyway. When I received the pen I was surprised to see that the entire cap felt like one full piece, even though it wasn't. Since there was no real hint of a top piece which was holding the clip, I declined Brian's request to send the pen back (at his cost!) and have another sent out without a clip. But, he insisted that the option will be on the table if I change my mind in the future. Couldn't ask for more in the service department!
The weight of the pen is not heavy and not light, I can write with it for hours, and have, and enjoy the exercise. Some close-ups of the dual ink windows:
The pen holds a TON of ink and I love that I can see as the ink runs down either at the end of the pen or in the middle, depending on how I'm holding/positioning the pen. But, in all honesty, I think I simply like the aesthetic value of having these dual ink windows and the contrast with the Red and Black Ebonite is perfect.
And, of course, the nib:
The section is not the 'concaved' one that come with some of Brian's pens, I preferred this one, and will be requesting it from now on whenever I order another pen from him. Regarding the nib, I was never thrilled with it from the pictures on Brian's website. It seemed that the gold nib was too...dull. Even looking through the rhodium and the two tone nib, I was not impressed, and decided to simply stick with the 18k gold nib. Since I received the pen, I've had a complete change of heart. I'm now a huge fan of the nib, oh so shiny! But, in all seriousness, the nib in real life is night and day to what I saw in the pictures and the .5 CI is excellent. I've had a few pens worked on by Richard Binder and Brian's come quite close to his quality. There is a bit of 'tooth' on the upstroke but that's not something that I can't handle, the feedback is nice and, depending on the paper you're using, at times you'll forget it's even there. It's probably a 7 on a 1-10 wetness scale, although I prefer an 8, it's nice to have variety as well. It's also nice to know that if I ever feel that I'd like it changed, I know Brian can easily tune it for me. I do have to add that I have experienced one problem with the pen. When I was still in Arizona and taking notes on a paper I was writing for a seminar class, the pen began to leak...from where exactly I'm not sure and I don't know if it was due to the fact that it might have been bouncing around in my backpack (although in a secure section of the backpack, I'm sure my walking made it go up and down). I have yet to experience it a second time, so I'm hoping it was a one time thing. But, again, if it does happen, I know Brian will be happy to take a look at it and adjust it as needed.
The pearl is probably my favorite of all Brian's creations, I hope to have another on the way soon. I'm sorry to say I can't recall the exactly price of the pen, but I'm thinking $480, including shipping (would have been more if you want a clip as well).
Edited by AKAGodSent, 14 July 2009 - 02:28.