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The Pelikan M405 with a Binder "Itali-fine" nib


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6 replies to this topic

#1 Pueo711

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Posted 13 August 2009 - 13:55

The Pelikan M405

This is the follow-up review hard on the heels of my first report on the Vanishing Point Raden. I acquired the Pelikan M405 in early August, having been bit hard by the FP virus. This pen was purchased from Richard Binder's shop in a medium point along with an "Itali-fine" nib. Richard tests the pens he sells and tunes them if necessary so it was no surprise that this pen also writes well "out of the box."

Pardon the repeat picture from the earlier VP review; comparison shot - Carene (top), VP Raden (middle), Pelikan 405 (bottom)
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Pelikan M405:
First impressions: Light! REALLY light! At half the weight of either the Carene or the Raden, this pen feels like a feather in my hand. It is also smaller than either the Carene or Raden, both in length and diameter. Swapping out the nib is easily accomplished, it takes longer to write and explain how to do this properly than it does to actually change the nib section. A piston filler, it holds a lot of ink in comparison to the Raden or Carene.

Appearance and Design: The standard Pelikan (200, 300, 400, 800 and 1000) series (not the special 425/450/625 series) are very workmanlike in appearance and construction. Everything about the pen tells you that this is a workhorse, made for everyday use. It ain't flashy and there ain't no bling. If you're looking for a prestige pen from Pelikan, you'll want either the special series pens, the Majesty line or perhaps one of the vintage pens. This is not to say that the 405 isn't attractive. There is a form follows function aesthetic to this pen, combined with the blue striping and stark black of the body that is quite beautiful in its simplicity. The clip is the standard "pelican beak" and it is quite secure. The M405 differs from the 400 in the trim - the 400 has gold trim and whereas the 405 has silver trim. The blue striping is both reflective and translucent. In strong light it shimmers silvery-blue and also doubles as an ink window.

Balance and Comfort: This is a very comfortable pen. Because it is so light weight I can write for a very long time without any fatigue whatsoever. It is much more comfortable in the hand posted as most of the balance is rather forward, close to the cap threads.

Nib Performance: I ordered the 405 with a medium point, and it is indeed a true medium when compared to the Carene, which lays down a much narrower line. (This comparison surprised me, as I'd always assumed that the Carene was what a medium ought to look like, but as the Carene was my first pen, I had nothing to compare it against.) The medium nib is truly gorgeous in 14k gold and what I'd guess as partial platinum/rhodium masking. Having also ordered an Itali-fine from Richard Binder, I swapped out the nibs to see how the two compared, and how the Itali-fine would compare to the Raden's custom oblique cursive italic nib (also from Richard Binder). Both the medium and Itali-fine laid down a very wet line, much more so than the Raden. This is a very juicy pen with either nib! The Itali-fine is a definite keeper and it is staying on this pen! It is not only one of the smoothest nibs I've ever written with but it is absolutely versatile allowing italic cursive writing with the "normal" section and a fine point when reversed, creating an almost perfect pen for work or home use.

From the earlier VP review: Nib comparison - top, Raden (Binder oblique cursive italic), bottom, Pelikan 405 (Binder Itali-fine)
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Filling System: Piston fill.

Real Value: An excellent value!

Final Verdict: A very functional pen, one that has already become my main workhorse, but not entirely plain-Jane as the silvery blue stripes compliment the silver trim very nicely. Of course, it'll never be mistaken for a high-end Visconti, Mont Blanc, Danitrio, Nakaya or Krone, but then again, this isn't a "prestige" pen, this is a pen you'd use everyday and not be afraid to take everywhere; a pen that will comfortably fit in the boardroom, office, shopping mall, grocery store or right on a desk or table at home!

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#2 Aissa2

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Posted 13 August 2009 - 15:28

Very nice review. I really enjoyed reading it. Also, you have one of the most beautiful handwriting's I have ever seen. :clap1:

Pelikan M800 red/black XF,
Lamy Raspberry All-Star XF,Pilot VP red/rhodium,Bexley Americana Strawberry swirl,Lamy Limited Ed. Pink 2009
Lamy L.E. 2008,Pelikan M400 black FP,Lamy Vista demon., Lamy L.E.2005, Charcoal Lamy 1.5 nib, Pelikan M600 green/black med. nib

Ink: Diamine Red, Red, Red....



#3 italiansallion

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Posted 13 August 2009 - 15:34

thanks for a great review! its goo to know that this is a light pen, it was on my WTB list, but i cant use light pens...

#4 andyk

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Posted 13 August 2009 - 21:46

Hi,

Great review often wondered about an Italfine nib, but with exchange rates, import duties etc, probably too expensive.

I have all three pens and use them all regularly.

By the way you have great hand writing wish mine was half as nice.

Andy

#5 HDoug

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Posted 13 August 2009 - 22:40

Thanks for this review and the one on the VP Raden. I use Binder italics but always wondered about the Itali-Fines. OK, now I get it!

Hey, just wondering... do you have some connection with Hawaii? "Pueo" is the owl, and Seven Eleven is an open-all-night store. Not trying to decode your name, but I'd guess you are a night creature?

Doug

#6 Pueo711

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Posted 15 August 2009 - 01:08

Thanks for this review and the one on the VP Raden. I use Binder italics but always wondered about the Itali-Fines. OK, now I get it!

Hey, just wondering... do you have some connection with Hawaii? "Pueo" is the owl, and Seven Eleven is an open-all-night store. Not trying to decode your name, but I'd guess you are a night creature?

Doug


Hey Doug! As a matter of fact, I live on O`ahu. And yeah, I am indeed a night creature (check out what time it was when I posted each review), up late mostly because I work nights, though I added 7-11 mainly because it sounded better than 154 (the last three digits of my license plate :roflmho: ).

#7 breaker

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Posted 03 October 2010 - 17:23

nice review
Cogito ergo sum






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