Thank you Michael for posting this information on the Affinity. I have been interested in this new model from reading the other posts on about it in this forum, and from what I could find on the web. I have check with my local B&M, which does carry the Cross line, and they had not yet received any of this particular model at the time I last checked.
Thank you for including a picture of it with the cap on, as the official Cross site has only the posted view of the pen. I also like the side-by-side picture with the Century II and Townsand for comparison It is interesting that the barrel portion of the Affinity is the same weight as the barrel of the Townsand, (but of course the Townsand cap is equal in weight to the barrel, a fact that some have found a detriment of the Townsand line).
There were several points you made, and I am glad you brought them out, that have cooled my ardor somewhat.
1) The matching of metal threads to plastic threads, which I feel may lead to excessive ware on the plastic side.
2) The lack of a converter, (personally I never use cartridges in my Townsand, which is the only FP I own capable of using them). The fact that the pen came without the converter speaks, in my opinion to a decline in Crosss customer orientation. Secondly, although Cross converters for their other fountain pen lines (#8939 for Townsand and #8030 for the others apart form the Affinity) have an MSRP of $4.00, the Cross web sit, while identifying the Affinity converter as #8756 does not list it on their site. Have you tried to obtain a converter for the Affinity? (Of course you may be very satisfied with using the cartridges which seem to be the same standard one used in Crosss other FPs.)
3) The nib being misaligned on the feed section does not, again in my opinion, speak well of Crosss Quality Control, and while they are now boasting that their nibs are being mass produced in China they ought to be extra careful to get them right.
4) You feel your steel fine point nib is a wet writer? The only experience I have with steel nibs are my three Esterbrook nibs, two of which are fine points, and one medium. From these I was under the impression that steel nibs were, a) thinner than a gold one designated as being the same size, and
slightly drier than the gold counter parts, but that is not to say poor writers by any means. Of course these impressions, and perhaps misunderstandings, of the nature of nibs may certainly be the result of my limited experience.
All in all I want to again thank you for posting this information on the new Affinity. I will be curious to learn the views of others, especially of those who have a good opinion of Cross products. I myself have a high regard for Cross, and I hope I don't have to alter it in the future, (I have the Townsand FP, and the pencil, ballpoint and select tip in both the Century II and Townsand lines, and I regard my Townsand FP as a high quality and excellent writing instrument which I use equally as much as my Pelikan Souveran M400). But for now I am no longer tempted to buy an Affinity from a web site before I have a chance to carefully examine one.
Edited by Bipedallou, 20 October 2009 - 02:22.