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OMAS Paragon (Mottishawed .6mm stub)


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11 replies to this topic

#1 errantmarginalia

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 16:10

OMAS Paragon (Pardon the terrible pics...)

In my long-standing love affair with pens, I had, for whatever reason, neglected Italian pens entirely. It's not that I'd purposefully avoided them; they had simply never really registered on my radar. Similarly, I had never had the pleasure of writing with a Mottishawed nib. A few weeks ago, I decided to address both lacunae in one fell swoop: I ordered a Venice Blue and HT OMAS Paragon from Pat and had John regrind the nib into a .6mm stub. I was hoping this pen would become my Holy Grail: an everyday user I wouldn't get bored with within the first few weeks of using it. All I can say is, so far so good.

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APPEARANCE/FINISH: 5/5

It's funny how one's tastes change over time. The form of the Paragon had never particularly appealed to me; I now think it's one the most elegant and classic pens out there. The finish on this pen is excellent: the cap twists smoothly and closes securely, while the action on the piston is also quite smooth. One interesting note: there is a very small engraving of the word 'PROTOTIPO' on the cap, just above the OMAS engraving.
The Venice Blue is a very beautiful blue: a deep, dark, and rich blue to which pictures don't do justice. If you have some Diamine Prussian Bue, however, you have some sense of the color of this pen.

SIZE/WEIGHT: 4.5/5

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The Paragon is a rathe large pen, but light as a feather. I used to prefer smaller pens in the 200/400 range, but like my tastes, my hands have changed and I now prefer a larger pen for long writing sessions. In this respect, the Paragon immediately felt right in my hand.
The 'soft' resin also makes this pen a pleasant tactile experience.
I don't post with this pen, as the pen is entirely too long with the cap posted (the cap posts very high up on the barrel of the pen). This is a new experience for me, as I usually prefer to post (hence the .5 deduction). Still, there's something nice about holding the cap in my left hand as I write with the other.

NIB/PERFORMANCE: 6/5

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Richard Binder gets a lot of press around these FPN parts, and deservedly so; the Binderized stubs I have are a pleasure to use. But this Mottishawed stub is in every respect every bit their equal. It's very smooth, with the perfect dose of wetness. The ebonite feed ensures steady flow, and the nib has yet to skip a beat, even on the slickest Clairefontaine paper. Finally, the width is perfect for everyday use: not too ostentatious, while still giving my handwriting a little much-needed flair. In other words, I am VERY impressed with John's work.
As an aside, as soon as I saw the Venice Blue on John's site, the pen screamed for Diamine Prussian Blue, and I suspect it will never see another ink. Though you can't tell from the picture, the colors match perfectly, and Diamine inks have quickly become my favorite for their overall performance (flow, lubrication, shading are all superb).

FILLING SYSTEM: 4/5

I'm deducting a point here. The Paragon is a piston-filler, which is fine by me. In fact, the piston is probably my favorite filling method. I really wish that OMAS had thought of a way to include a window, however, as I don't like the idea of not knowing how much ink is left in the pen. A small gripe, but a gripe nonetheless.

CONCLUSION

I love this pen, small warts and all. It's not flashy, it's not a conversation-starter, and that's just the way I like it. It's simply an elegant, classic pen: the best of Italian design and American nib craftsmanship (and as a Frenchman, that sentence hurt a little bit ;-).
The nib is a joy to use, and I would wholeheartedly recommend John Mottishaw's work to anyone.
It's only been a few weeks, but this pen immediately went on my never-ever-ever-sell list, and I think I'll be happily using this one for years to come.

David

PS Thanks to those whose review format I adopted (TNS, Ryan, etc...).

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#2 southpaw

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 17:46

Congrats on an excellent pen - one of the best mods out there, imho, especially with the custom ground nib. I too agree with you on Prussian Blue being a great match for the Venice Blue. Thanks for the great review, and enjoy the pen.
"But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Rom. 5:8, NKJV)

#3 RichardS

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 19:18

Great review, I enjoyed it a lot. Makes me start thinking about Omas again though ... I really should have one, shouldn't I? ;)

#4 sonia_simone

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 23:16

We all should!

I have two Mottishaw nibs and they're really excellent.
Isn't sanity really a one-trick pony, anyway? I mean, all you get is one trick, rational thinking! But when you're good and crazy . . . ooh hoo hoo hoo! . . . the sky's the limit!
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#5 Blade Runner

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 23:31

Very nice review and pen David.
What are you writing about in your notebook (first photo)?
It looks very interesting and organized!

J

#6 errantmarginalia

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 23:44

Thanks for the kind words, everyone.
Jeen, I'm in the process of writing my doctoral dissertation on Michel Foucault, a French post-structuralist thinker. These are my notes for a set of lectures he gave in 74-75 entitled "The Abnormals" (Les anormaux).
Thanks again,

David

PS I agree, Richard, OMASes have their rightful place in any collection...

#7 MarkVA1968

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Posted 17 November 2006 - 18:17

David,

Would you please be so kind as to relay what writing pad/journal is pictured here? Is it a Moleskine?

Thanks and best regards.

Mark

#8 jd50ae

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Posted 17 November 2006 - 18:22

Yes, inquiring minds want to know. biggrin.gif

#9 fjf

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Posted 17 November 2006 - 22:39

I have the same pen in grey, with the standard medium nib, and I agree with your review entirely. A VERY nice pen. I like it.

#10 errantmarginalia

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Posted 18 November 2006 - 14:48

QUOTE(MarkVA1968 @ Nov 17 2006, 06:17 PM)
David,

Would you please be so kind as to relay what writing pad/journal is pictured here?  Is it a Moleskine?

Thanks and best regards.

Mark


Hi, Mark. Yup, it's a garden-variety Moleskine. I've had good luck finding Moleskines with good paper. Best,

David

#11 cmeisenzahl

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Posted 19 December 2006 - 12:04

Great taste in pens! wink.gif

#12 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 28 January 2007 - 20:47

nice pen indeed wink.gif
Pens are like watches , once you start a collection, you can hardly go back. And pens like all fine luxury items do improve with time






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