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Good Workhorse Pens?


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#41 ParkerDuofold

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Posted 07 December 2017 - 03:23

Hhhmmmm... I know Professional Dilettante wanted us to "expand the horizons" of the neophyte user, but I'll have to stick with the L2K as my choice for a "good workhorse pen."

Surprise, surprise. :D


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#42 Nibson

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 08:46

I think it's a mark of just how good the L2K is, that whenever anyone asks what's the best pen for this or that, the L2K is so often a strong contender. I admit, I hadn't thought of it as a choice for a newbie. But you know, that could make sense. It's certainly a distinctive and robust pen.



#43 IndigoBOB

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 09:15

Lamy Safari - The grip may not be the most comfortable, but the section's shape provides a very secure contour.  I can let my hand relax and the pen holds itself in my grip

 

Ranga Zayante - The ebonite is so comfortable, can be eyedroppered and it uses a standard jowo nib unit filling system as well.  Probably the most comfortable pen I have.  No effort to hold because of the traction ebonite provides.  I think if you find a descent ebonite pen that suits your preferences of dimensions you won't be able to beat the comfort that material provides.

 

Lamy 2000 - falls into just about every category.  I think  it's a desent workhorse, but it's not the most comfortable pen I've used.  The convex shape of the grip isn't my preference, and there's no landmarks to grip onto either, but the material does make up for that a good amount.   It's hard to go wrong with a Lamy 2000, but it's not my favorite.  But I think it does qualify as a good workhorse pen.


Edited by IndigoBOB, 09 December 2017 - 09:17.

A voice:  I'll write pages and pages, days upon days, to be able to breathe out a few lines,

I'll do whatever it takes to breathe out those few lines, where the breath breathes out on its own, in on its own,

To thine own...

...breath on its own.


#44 Venemo

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 09:21

I would suggest a TWSBI Eco, you simply cannot go wrong with those pens.



#45 IndigoBOB

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 11:29

I would suggest a TWSBI Eco, you simply cannot go wrong with those pens.

 

I like the Eco's, too.  

 

I think they did a good job with the Eco-T...

...'cept the color.  I switched my Eco parts onto the Eco-T body.


A voice:  I'll write pages and pages, days upon days, to be able to breathe out a few lines,

I'll do whatever it takes to breathe out those few lines, where the breath breathes out on its own, in on its own,

To thine own...

...breath on its own.


#46 Nibson

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 13:09

Lamy Safari - The grip may not be the most comfortable, but the section's shape provides a very secure contour.  I can let my hand relax and the pen holds itself in my grip

 

Ranga Zayante - The ebonite is so comfortable, can be eyedroppered and it uses a standard jowo nib unit filling system as well.  Probably the most comfortable pen I have.  No effort to hold because of the traction ebonite provides.  I think if you find a descent ebonite pen that suits your preferences of dimensions you won't be able to beat the comfort that material provides.

 

Lamy 2000 - falls into just about every category.  I think  it's a desent workhorse, but it's not the most comfortable pen I've used.  The convex shape of the grip isn't my preference, and there's no landmarks to grip onto either, but the material does make up for that a good amount.   It's hard to go wrong with a Lamy 2000, but it's not my favorite.  But I think it does qualify as a good workhorse pen.

Definitely agree. The Indian pens are going to create a massive headache for premium fountain pen brands. You can get a superb fountain pen in great materials such as ebonite, hand turned for not a lot of money. Add a quality nib from Jowo as you say, or one of the other quality makers, and you have a pen that can go toe-to-toe with the best of them - including pens costing multiple times your total layout for your semi-bespoke Indian pen. The only advantage for the premium pens I can see, is that they work straight out of the box, whereas you have to be prepared to tinker a little with the Indian ones. The premium brands lose that advantage though, when they sell pens that do not work properly straight-off. This is where they need to focus, if they're to maintain a distinctive quality that justifies their price. Some of these brands seriously need to pull their socks up in that regard.



#47 IndigoBOB

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 13:44

Definitely agree. The Indian pens are going to create a massive headache for premium fountain pen brands. You can get a superb fountain pen in great materials such as ebonite, hand turned for not a lot of money. Add a quality nib from Jowo as you say, or one of the other quality makers, and you have a pen that can go toe-to-toe with the best of them - including pens costing multiple times your total layout for your semi-bespoke Indian pen. The only advantage for the premium pens I can see, is that they work straight out of the box, whereas you have to be prepared to tinker a little with the Indian ones. The premium brands lose that advantage though, when they sell pens that do not work properly straight-off. This is where they need to focus, if they're to maintain a distinctive quality that justifies their price. Some of these brands seriously need to pull their socks up in that regard.

 

 

I've been thinking the same thing, but I'm too new to the scene to back it up.

 

I tried my first ebonite with FPR due to black friday sales this year.  It needed tinkering, but the material is more comfortable than anything I've tried (a lot between $2-$200).  I would have never thought about ebonite based on what's popular, but it was the material I've been looking for.

 

So I tried a safe ebonite brand, bought a Ranga Zayante this week, and from what I can see it's the same Jowo set up as Edison Pens and my Franklin-Christoph, but ebonite and made from India.  I can see a faint tool mark, but I can't tell the difference between the overall performance.  Like you say, the Indian pen goes toe-to-toe and it's more comfortable. 

 

And now ASA is on my radar because they have Jowo set ups for even less money and they work great and look great. I'm so surprised and caught off guard by the potential these companies have after buying a Franklin-Christoph for 2-3x the amount when it's basically engineered the same:  Solid body around a Jowo setup...   but with the ebonite which feels substantially more comfortable, even feels warm, and has a traction to it that makes it optimal for long writing sessions and writing in general.  


A voice:  I'll write pages and pages, days upon days, to be able to breathe out a few lines,

I'll do whatever it takes to breathe out those few lines, where the breath breathes out on its own, in on its own,

To thine own...

...breath on its own.


#48 ink-syringe

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 16:33

I'm rather late to the fray I know, but I would second the Platinum Preppy

 

 

a mere 8 years.

 

<cue all the pro-necro bumpers who will shout me down but the pen landscape has dramatically changed in 8 years so perhaps a new thread would be better>

 

<on the other hand interesting to see some of these pens are still around and some have gone away (remember the Pilot Knight?)>

 

 


Looking for a cap for a Sheaffer Touchdown Sentinel Deluxe Fat version

 

#49 ParkerDuofold

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 17:20

I think it's a mark of just how good the L2K is, that whenever anyone asks what's the best pen for this or that, the L2K is so often a strong contender. I admit, I hadn't thought of it as a choice for a newbie. But you know, that could make sense. It's certainly a distinctive and robust pen.


Hi Nibson,

I agree. It seems whenever most questions come up on this board; the two primary responses are the L2K and/or the P51... those two always get cited the most,... with everything else just speckled in the mix for seasoning. :D


- Anthony
With thanks to my Mom & Dad; who taught me to run free, but not run wild.

Please pray the Rosary daily. :)

Grab life with both arms and give it a bear hug every day! :D

#50 sandy101

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 18:31

Platinum Plasir, Faber Castell Basic or Loom Italix Parson's Essential, Waterman Hemisphere, Cross Century 2 - or Cross Townsend, Montblanc 146.



#51 RockingLR

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 19:33

Ok I'm biased here as I kinda stumbled into fountain pens on accident more then anything but I'd say Pilot metropolitan for a good beater that you don't have to worry about breaking and can easily toss in a pocket or bag.  I haven't tried many other brands besides noodlers and I think they could be really frustrating for a brand newbie but quite fun once you have your toes dipped in the water.
 

It's fun to go read through the old blog. I'm all for resurrecting old threads. If the info's still mostly relevant why not? :)

 



#52 pajaro

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 19:55

First so far as modern pens go, I'd vote for the Safari and the Phileas/Kultur both of which do what they are supposed to very well. (2nd hand
info only on the Safari but I do appreciate it's ability to have it's nib switched out) For me, the Kultur demonstrators now sit at the top of my suggestions for a first (modern) pen.

That being said,

Pun intended, it's hard to put my fingers on it but personally, but I get more enjoyment from using a vintage pen. There to me is just something about them that in many cases seems to have disappeared between their heyday and the design of modern FPs. There's something I feel, a connection with a vintage pen that I don't seem to get from it's modern "replacement". There's just such a noticeable difference between a pen "doing well what it's supposed to do" and a pen that feels at home, almost physically connected to the hand that holds it. I'm sure there are modern pens that can still elicit that same response but more seem to have lost their way to that in the passing of time.

So, of course, in the end, I have to side with ZI here and go with whichever Esterbrook of the Dollar or J famlies that fit ones hand the best, and there's probably one of those that fit most hands. It may be the difference for you as it is with me between having a pen you like to write with and having one that makes you sigh with contentment.

I could say more on why that's my choice. In fact, I already have. Here. http://roossinck.wordpress.com/

Bruce in Ocala, FL-Resident Estie Crack pen enabler

 

There is a thought captured here by Bruce that I understand.  The vintage workhorses were designed and made in a time when they were in widespread use, and they had to offer assured good service that is not so essential in today's offerings, which are a niche or hobby item.  It is hard to define the difference, but having lived through that period, I get that the vintage workhorse was something that had to work to sell, where the current pen fits more needs, as in collectible, user writing tool and just fun stuff.  It doesn't seem so essential for today's pen to work, and a good number of them work poorly.  Not what I needed in the 1950s and 1960s.


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They took the blue from the skies and the pretty girls' eyes and a touch of Old Glory too . . .


#53 Bookman

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 04:27

It's too bad speculators have driven up the price of NOS Waterman Phileases.  A Phileas with an F nib is my idea of a great workhorse pen.  It's a comfortable, all-day writer.  Another one: Nemosine Singularity, at a fraction of the price of a Phileas.  Use the Singularity filled as an eyedropper: the extra heft from the extra ink still keeps the pen at near-feather weight. Add your choice of #6 nibs.  I like the FPR flex nib.


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