I will write everything out here (with slightly more detail) and provide the pictures in between.
The Sailor Ink Pen is a bargain-basement model available from DAISO, Japan's most popular 100-yen shop. It comes in a cellophane sleeve with one Sailor black ink cartridge (a very nice black).
This is actually my second Ink Pen. I bought my first one in Japan last year and send it directly to the trash bin because it had a tendency to tear through paper. This one is better behaved, but it seems to have an uneven flow and tends to pick up paper fibres in the nib very easily. Clarification: I now believe the uneven flow is mostly caused by fibres getting stuck in the nib. Upon taking the macro photos for this review I noticed tiny bits of fuzz that were not visible to the naked eye and managed to remove them.
Nib: The nib appears to have no tipping unless examined under magnification. It looks, acts and feels like a very fine stub. It's very toothy but entirely functional, and puts down a decent medium wet line.
Top of nib:
Underside of nib:
Body: Made of very lightweight plastic, the Ink Pen is actually a deep navy blue. The cap and end cap are made of transparent but cloudy plastic. The name "Ink Pen" is stamped in silver on the side of the barrel. Not much thought was given to the stamping as it does not line up with the nib's orientation, and appears upside down when in use. There is a small but sharp step from the barrel to the section where the cap slides on which I find irritating. The clear plastic end cap suggests potential for eyedropper conversion.
The whole thing:
Value: It's a dollar. And it works. That's already better value than a lot of pens out there (I'm specifically thinking of a couple of Italian makers and my Parker Sonnet). Personally I would rather pay 200 or 300 yen and get a slightly smoother nib.
Performance: This pen has a lot of potential. With some nib-smoothing it would make a great carry-around pen. It can sit for months without drying up -- it starts instantly. It is by far the best quality 100 yen pen I have tried so far (The Platinum Preppy runs circles around it, but it's about 250 yen, if memory serves). Out of the box it works OK, but the nib picks up so much paper fibre that I don't think it would be useful as a daily writer. With a bit of tweaking I can see it being something to keep in a purse or pencil case, especially since it never dries out.
Edited and edited and edited to make the pictures work. GRRR!
Edited by Neill78, 11 November 2009 - 23:02.