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Cross ATX review


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#1 drunken spider

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Posted 05 December 2009 - 20:45

I thought that I would try my hand at my first review. I am a newcomer to fountain pens, but in the short time I have had an interest I have 'accumulated' six pens of differing styles, and I feel my ability to differentiate between good and bad is increasing. I also think that as a lot of newbies read the reviews of pens they are interested in, a review from a fellow newbie might be of some use.

INTRODUCTION: I bought this pen for a couple of different reasons. First one is that I got married in the summer, and the pen the registrar gave us to sign the register was a Matt Black Cross ATX. Of course, I didn't know this at the time, but a little research of the wedding photos and the interweb provided the answer. The pen used on that occasion was a lovely writer which was a different experience from most FPs I had used before. This planted a seed, and the rest is (recent) history. My other reasons for buying this one were: 1, it was cheap and 2, I wanted to try more pens to gauge what I like and don't like before spending a much larger sum on a Fountain pen.
On opening the box the pen looked streamlined and classy. This pen came with 2 cartridges and the converter inside the body.

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Appearance & Design (1-10)7
The Sage green colour looks like a grey in artificial light, and really only shows it's green in daylight. Not necessarily a bad thing. The pen looks understated but classy. The shape is streamlined and although both ends are flat it is not overall too angular. In particular the clip join at the top of the cap is a nice design feature. The almost 'hammerite' finish looks ok on this pen, but would not be to my taste on most pens. The shiny silver coloured section provides a nice contrast with the body and blends well with the steel nib.

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Construction & Quality (1-10)8
Length capped- 140mm. Length posted- 148mm. Length unposted- 129mm. Diameter at section- between 10 and 7mm. The pen feels well made, and being metal has a decent weight to it. The balance to me seems better posted, and the weight not too unwieldy but enough that you know you have a pen in your hand.

Nib & Performance (1-10)4
This is a steel nib in medium. It lays down a wet line about the same thickness as a Lamy Safari medium. Not much thinner than my Pelikan M805 with a broad nib. Writes quite nicely. Not quite as smooth as the 2 Lamys I have or the M805, but not scratchy either. Under a 10x loupe the tines seem evenly matched.
One problem in use is the shiny metal section. I find this get slippery quite quickly and causes me problems with grip and orientation of the nib. I don't have particularly sweaty hands so I imagine this could be a problem for most people.

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Filling System & Maintenance (1-10) - 7
Cartridge or converter. What can be said about this? Takes the same converter as the Apogee, Century etc. Has worked well for me so far.

Cost & Value (1-10)7
I bought this from a British online retailer in a sale for £27.50 with free postage. Thought this was a good price for a pen that was around the £45 mark RRP. Seems like a decent pen for the money, made better value by the cheap price I paid.

Conclusion (1-10) - 7
Overall I think the Cross ATX has got a fair bit going for it. It writes well and seems fairly robust in fit and finish so could be carried around without much fear. The slippery section could be a problem if you intend to write for extended periods, but for odd notes and signatures it is fine. I would probably not buy another unless I saw a matt black for a steal, but likewise, don't intend on parting with it anytime soon.

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#2 Rogue Puppy

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Posted 05 December 2009 - 20:56

Thank you for the excellent review!

#3 I am not a number

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 12:50

Very nice review, good and well-reasoned scoring!
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of nothing at all...

#4 Taurean

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 14:45

Thanks for the lucid and straightforward review.
The pen is beautifully elegant!
I would like to know though, from other people acquainted with this pen, if they have faced similar issues with the metallic section in terms of grip for extended periods of writing.
And I must add, very interesting color..

Parker VS (rust)
Parker "51" aerometric (navy grey)
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Sheaffer Imperial IV Touchdown (green)

#5 drunken spider

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 18:29

Thank you for the excellent review!



Very nice review, good and well-reasoned scoring!



Thanks for the lucid and straightforward review.
The pen is beautifully elegant!
I would like to know though, from other people acquainted with this pen, if they have faced similar issues with the metallic section in terms of grip for extended periods of writing.
And I must add, very interesting color..


No no, I thank you.
It takes quite a bit of work to post a review, and seeing as it's my first, I am glad you liked it. :thumbup:

I think others have commented on the slippery section, but I suppose it all depends on your preferences as to whether that becomes a problem for you.
As for the colour, the lighting I used for the photos makes it look a light grey. Sat on my desk just now it looks a dark grey, but in sunlight it looks a very muted grey green.

#6 Vanrensalier

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 06:02

I love the look of the ATX. So much so that I have a full set of the Basalt Black: Two fountain pens (med & XF), roller ball, ballpoint and pencil. The XF ftn pen was my most recent purchase and I was disappointed to see that it was made in China. All of the others that I have were purchased a few years ago and were made in the USA. They are all good quality, brass barrel pens. My only criticism of them is that the nibs are extremely stiff compared to other steel-palladium nibs that I have. Thanks for the review!

#7 MYU

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 23:31

Thanks for the detailed review. Overall, a very nice looking pen. The clip looks strikingly familiar... :hmm1:

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(Photo courtesy of Dandelion)

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#8 archie001

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 11:36

Good review of a nice pen, thanks!
Fountain Pen is for people who have a delicate taste in writing

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#9 mel o

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 18:00

Very nice review. It doesn't look anything like green though.






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