Jump to content

The Fountain Pen Network uses (functional) cookies. Read the FPN Privacy Policy for more info.  To remove this message, please click here to accept the use of cookies






Photo

Hero 100, 616 and 132


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 Nihontochicken

Nihontochicken

    Nihonto Chicken

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,316 posts

Posted 01 August 2006 - 01:20

Just to have some writers to play with, and to check out what China is producing, I recently bought three Hero pens, a 100, a 616 and a 132 Model. Here are my impressions. Realize I am a newbie and so perhaps lack some sophistication and experience to well evaluate these pens. Hopefully there will still be something of value here for most readers.

The Hero 100 is the flagship clone of the Parker 51, using a 14K gold nib. I got a maroon model with brush silvertone cap and gold trim. This is a newer model 100, without the Parker-style arrow clip.

The Hero 616 is another 51 clone, a step below the 100, with a 12K gold nib. I got the green model with the polished goldtone cap, which does have the Parker-like arrow clip.

The 132 is another 51 clone, this an offshoot with a half black, half gold barrel joined in a wavy line, with apparently the same 12K gold nib as the 616 (some variance in the plastic parts).

Looks, Fit and Finish:

100: The 100 is a decent looking pen. The cap is the best finished of the three by far. Unfortunately, the clip appears to be anchored to the cap similar in manner to the 132 (see below), giving doubts as to its serviceability. There is an exterior camfer at the open end of the cap, so it better blends into the pen barrel when capped in its overlap fit. Unfortunately, the grooved metal ring between the nib section and the barrel is there just for looks (and it does look a bit cheap), because it does NOT provide a closure detent for the cap. The cap just jams on until stiction restricts further advancement. There is no positive "stop" that I can tell. Basically, this sucks, unacceptable on any pen that has classical aspirations.

616: The 616 body looks very similar to that of the 100, minus the metal tassie. Close inspection shows the nib section-barrel separation ring is a sandwich of plastic between two metal disks, as compared to the 100 all-metal unit. Indeed, the section barrel threads are metal on the 100, and plastic on the 616. The cap is polished gold electroplate over steel, with fine longitudinal incised lines. It's not great, but passable. There is no bottom edge camfer as on the 100, and so there is more discontinuity between the cap and barrel on the overlap fit. The cap fits even worse that that of the 100. Again, no positive stop, just jams on until stiction takes over. And when jammed on tight, the cap still rocks on the barrel! Totally unacceptable. Now, get this, when the 616 cap is placed on the 100, it fits more smoothly, and there IS a positive internal stop!!! And no rocking! And the 100 cap fits the 616 barrel no worse than it does the 100 body. The 616 cap has the Parker clone arrow clip. Good news: This clip has a strong circular collar as its base, and so doesn't have the structural weakness that the 132 (and new 100?) clip does. Bad news: there are four bubbles underneath the gold plating. Yuck-o. I don't know whether they are hollow bubbles or have crud underneath the plating.

132: The least expensive clone, the Hero 132, has some interesting attributes. Narrower than the 100 and 616, the 132 pen body is more robustly made than both. The barrel is an interesting half black, half gold color, apparently made in separate sections that meet not in a circular plane, but in a three dimensional curve, dipping toward the nib on one side of the barrel, and toward the rear on the other. The forward end of the barrel has a metal insert to thread to the nib section, unlike the 100 and 616 barrels, which are both just threaded plastic. The 132 nib section threads are also metal like the 100. OTOH, the 132 cap is cheap, thin, gold plated steel with a bad clip design. Despite this, it fits the pen body better than either of the other two!!! It slides on with increasing friction, and then "snaps" closed the last little bit, coming to a positive external stop where its edge butts up against the threaded metal insert in the barrel, leaving a smooth, unbroken external surface at the junction. Unfortunately, the clip uses just two folded metal ears to lock into a rectangular cut in the cap, with only little metal hooks at the ear ends to anchor the press fit clip. So there are four points of contact, each consisting of two pieces of thin sheet metal meeting edge on at 90 degrees to each other. This is guaranteed to fail, and fail it did. With only a week in my shirt pocket, the clip loosened enough so as to be worthless, and so this 132 is now a desk pen. Sigh.

How Do They Write? (All three using Waterman blue-black)

100: The 100 fine nib is by far the smoothest writer of the three. Though the 14K nib appears the same width as the 132 12K nib, it puts down a slightly thicker, but drier, line. The 100 is not as smooth as my Parker 75 with extra-fine 14K nib and Parker cartridge ink.

616: The 616 medium 12K nib is "scratchier" than the fine 100 nib, and puts down a wetter line.

132: The 132 fine 12K nib is likewise "scratchier" than the 100 nib, and puts down a slightly thinner and wetter line.

The Bottom Line

These Hero pens have some very good attributes, but the quality is far from seamless. Some things are done well for the money, other things are done so poorly one has to imagine, "What were they thinking?" The clip pulling out of the cap on the Hero 132 was indicative of really deficient engineering and manufacturing, IMO. Too bad, the rest of the pen is built stronger than the other two. With some nib smoothing, it may have remained my carry pen if the clip had survived. At this point, I can't recommend Hero pens until the cap problems of poorly anchored clips and poor barrel fit are solved. Again, this is all just my newbie opinion, take all with a grain of salt.
Nihonto Chicken

Sponsored Content

#2 Sparky

Sparky

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 292 posts

Posted 01 August 2006 - 01:35

You bring up some good points--- the cap exchange on the 616 and 100 is something I never thought to try. Overall I think the price point for all the pens certainly makes them appealing---27.99 for a hero 100 with a 14K gold nib is hard to beat... me thinks.

#3 Nihontochicken

Nihontochicken

    Nihonto Chicken

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,316 posts

Posted 01 August 2006 - 18:39

Here are writing samples from the three Hero pens, along with a sample from my Parker 75:

Posted Image
Nihonto Chicken

#4 Nihontochicken

Nihontochicken

    Nihonto Chicken

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,316 posts

Posted 05 August 2006 - 02:15

Well, the Hero 132 got a new lease on life. My better half has decided to use it as her purse pen for her sudoku puzzles. I'm now carrying the 616 pen with 100 cap in my pocket, will see whether the clip is better anchored, rotating it with the 100 pen, 616 cap combo.
Nihonto Chicken

#5 Sparky

Sparky

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 292 posts

Posted 07 August 2006 - 07:24

Are you sure the 616 is a gold nib? I thought it was steel.

#6 Dillo

Dillo

    Museum Piece

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 6,643 posts

Posted 07 August 2006 - 13:06

Are you sure the 616 is a gold nib? I thought it was steel.

Hi,

It is supposed to be steel.

Dillon

Stolen: Aurora Optima Demonstrator Red ends Medium nib. Serial number 1216 and Aurora 98 Cartridge/Converter Black bark finish (Archivi Storici) with gold cap. Reward if found. Please contact me if you have seen these pens.

Please send vial orders and other messages to fpninkvials funny-round-mark-thing gmail strange-mark-thing com. My shop is open once again if you need help with your pen.

Dillon


#7 Nihontochicken

Nihontochicken

    Nihonto Chicken

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,316 posts

Posted 07 August 2006 - 14:33

Oops, sorry, you're right, the 616 apparently has a steel nib. Gold plated, though! :lol:
Nihonto Chicken

#8 J. John Harvey

J. John Harvey

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 251 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Flag:

Posted 07 August 2006 - 15:15

I have a Hero 100 and I could have sworn the nib was steel...

#9 matrixseq

matrixseq

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 59 posts

Posted 27 April 2008 - 01:05

I did not know Hero started producing with 14K nibs !!

Wow ... I might have to go back and check out this line ....

Thanks for the review thumbup.gif

#10 zamine

zamine

    Dipped Only

  • Member - Gold

  • Pip
  • 3 posts

Posted 02 May 2008 - 12:10

QUOTE(matrixseq @ Apr 27 2008, 01:05 AM) View Post
I did not know Hero started producing with 14K nibs !!

Wow ... I might have to go back and check out this line ....

Thanks for the review thumbup.gif

the 616 and 329 is with steel nib,while 100 gold.

zamine.

#11 SallyLyn

SallyLyn

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 867 posts

Posted 03 May 2008 - 02:49

The Hero 110 has a 12K nib. More importantly the tipping is smoother than a 616, 329, 330, etc., and I think just as good as the 100.

#12 Jimmy James

Jimmy James

    Macho Business Donkey Wrestler

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,772 posts
  • Location:Virginia

Posted 04 May 2008 - 23:43

I own all these pens (plus one new style 329). I'm a bit surprised the 132 didn't come out better, though. I'm sorely tempted to buy another from isellpens. It's something like half the price of the 100 but is just as good a pen in my book. It just goes to show that it really comes down to the individual pen if you ask me. I might have gotten a great 132 while the original reviewer got a poor one.

Some time soon, I hope to buy an old style 329, another 132, and a 110.

ETA: One other thing to mention is that my 132 is a gold and grey model, not the half black and half gold model. They really don't look like quite the same pen despite the same model number.

Edited by Jimmy James, 04 May 2008 - 23:46.


#13 hoche

hoche

    Near Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPip
  • 30 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 13 May 2011 - 10:56

the 616 has a gold nib?
I using 616 when i was a kid, really a good pen, cheap, realible and good to use.

#14 adallak

adallak

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 280 posts
  • Location:Central Massachusetts
  • Flag:

Posted 23 May 2011 - 06:29

Close inspection shows the nib section-barrel separation ring is a sandwich of plastic between two metal disks, as compared to the 100 all-metal unit. Indeed, the section barrel threads are metal on the 100, and plastic on the 616.

Never put a 616 in your hip pocket. It will break apart at the barrel/section junction.
“Be nice to people on your way up because you meet them on your way down.” Jimmy Durante quotes (American Comedian, Pianist and Singer, 1893-1980)

#15 Ink Sandwich

Ink Sandwich

    Doublemint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 274 posts

Posted 24 May 2011 - 00:26

The Hero 616 is a nifty little pen. I just love writing with it using Pelikan Blue-Black.

Does anyone have experience with a Hero 1000 btw?

#16 Nihontochicken

Nihontochicken

    Nihonto Chicken

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,316 posts

Posted 26 May 2011 - 04:21

Wow, talk about a zombie thread (returned from the dead). It's so old, I have no idea as to what Hero 616 pens look (or perform) like now. With all the effort Chinese pen makers put into change and glitz, if they just put half the effort into replicating the basic Parker 51 quality and simplicity, they would probably own the thinking man's (woman's) functional fountain pen market. Luckily or unluckily, hubris predominates, and the modern Parker 51 is as far away from fruition as ever.
Nihonto Chicken

#17 adallak

adallak

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 280 posts
  • Location:Central Massachusetts
  • Flag:

Posted 30 May 2011 - 03:10

The good thing about Hero 616 (and any other hooded nib) is that you can leave it uncapped for hours and it will wright right away.
“Be nice to people on your way up because you meet them on your way down.” Jimmy Durante quotes (American Comedian, Pianist and Singer, 1893-1980)

#18 bingo_zyb

bingo_zyb

    Dipped Only

  • Member - Silver

  • Pip
  • 1 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 30 May 2011 - 11:52

it's surprice to see you discussing Hero's products because i'm from china
Hero's pen usually means a lot to us.
It just like Nike or Adidas in the US,very normal,most people are familiar with it.
My first pen was a 616 given by my father.
as i know,616's nib is steel and 100's is 14K

#19 JonathanBarboza

JonathanBarboza

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,015 posts
  • Location:Dartmouth, MA
  • Flag:

Posted 27 August 2011 - 00:12

Does anyone have a HERO 100 Flighter that they wouldn't mind selling? Box and papers NOT required... Please PM me if you have one :)

WTT: Conklin Nozac Cursive Italic & Edison Beaumont Broad for Pelikan M1000 or Something Cool (PM me to discuss. It's part of my One Red Fountain Pen trading post)

WTB: 1. Camlin SD

2. 1950s to early 1960s 1st Gen MB 149 with BB nib

3. Airmail 90T Teal Swirl

4. PenBBS 355-16SF Demonstrator


#20 saketb

saketb

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 472 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 03 October 2011 - 19:04

How much is advisable at the maximum, to pay for the Hero 100?
Pilot Vanishing Point Royal Red
Sailor Professional Gear - Sailor Jentle Grenade
Kaweco AC Sport Red Limited Edition - Kaweco Red
Sheaffer Prelude Chrome - Private Reserve Sherwood Green
TWSBI Diamond 540 - Sheaffer Purple
Sheaffer 300 - Private Reserve Orange Crush






Sponsored Content




|