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Pelikan M320

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17 replies to this topic

#1 Moppeh


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Posted 01 June 2010 - 20:55

This is my first review, on a pen my parents got me for my 18th birthday. I purchased it from Richard Binder, as I preferred to be safe than sorry when it came to nib functionality. This is my first Pelikan souveran, my only other pelikans being an epoch and a pelikano (so not really comparable). I can't say I have that much experience with modern higher-end pens, the only other ones I've really used are a Lamy 2000 and a Pilot vanishing point. So if I gush a little over this pen, that would be why. :)

First Impressions: 8/10
A typical pelikan box, nice and sturdy. I think it would have been a lot cuter, however, if Pelikan had made a miniature box sized to this pen. The pen on first glance looked beautiful and rather adorable (but would have been more adorable in a littler box!).

Appearance and Design: 10/10
I chose the pen primarily for the appearance, and I was not disappointed. While I love the typical Pelikan black/green/blue choices, I wanted something that was 'special' and would really stand out. This pen definitely does that. The marbled red contrasts beautifully with the gold-plated fittings, and it even seems to sparkle. My pictures do a horrible job of showing the depth and vibrancy of the color.
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Other than the unique color, this pen is just the typical Pelikan souveran-- a simplistic design that still looks great.

Weight and Dimensions: 10/10
I like small pens. Really, really small pens. If you do not, then this pen is not a good pen for you.
Here are some pictures of it with an Esterbrook J and a Lamy Vista. I was suprised that though it looks tiny, it actually wasn't too much shorter than the Estie.
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This pen fits fairly comfortably in my hand unposted, but again--I love small pens, and write with them on a regular basis. I also have very small hands. It might work better for normal/large hands posted, but I never post my pens.
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Here is another size comparison, this time with one of my vintage ringtops, a Wahl.
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This pen fits in a lot better with my ringtops than with it's German brethren.

As a result of the small size, this pen also feels very light, and mildly insubstantial. But I can't imagine why you would want a pen this little to be heavy.

Nib and Performance: 10/10
I ordered this pen from Richard Binder, so the nib of course was incredibly smooth and nice and wet, making for very enjoyable writing.
This nib is a fine, and as you can see in the picture below, is slightly wider than a pilot fine (though not as much as I expected).
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For fun, here's a picture of the nib compared to one from a chinese pen I have.
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Filling System and Maintenance: 9/10
I realize I've only had this pen for a day, but my first experience with the Pelikan piston-fillers has been excellent. The pen was easy to fill, and Pelikan fillers are renowned for their high-level of function and durability, so I hope that mine will be the same. The only thing I had a problem with is that this pen's barrel is semi-transparent...which means my ink, Waterman Black, shows through pretty clearly. I'm planning on getting some maroon or brown ink for this pen though, and that should solve the problem.

Cost and Value: 8/10
This pen was expensive for me, but I am also a high-school student. It certainly is less expensive than many other modern pens on the market, though arguably less functional, due to the small size. I received this pen as a present, to commemorate a special event, and think that for that purpose, this pen fits perfectly and the cost was quite reasonable.

Conclusion: 9/10
For me this pen is a great way to always remember my 18th birthday, and an excellent introduction into the world of Pelikans. I am already plotting to get my next one.
I would concede, however, that this pen might be more of a collector's pen than a user's. The small size makes it unsuitable for extended writing, and might make it completely unusable for someone with large hands.
But I love it and can't wait to use it along with my esterbrooks and pilots. This is a different take on the usual Pelikan, making for a memorable and beautiful pen that I'm sure I'll enjoy.

If you have any questions or comments, please share! As I've said, this is my first review, so I'm sure there are lots of things I could work on or missed including.
Currently using: pelikan 320 + sheaffer balance

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#2 dwong



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Posted 01 June 2010 - 21:29

Congrats on your bday, and you received a mighty fine present! Thanks for the great review.

#3 bigstick



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Posted 01 June 2010 - 21:42

Happy Birthday!
I was 20 when I bought myself my first Pelikan: an M&K-made model 120 with a medium stub. It took me through college, university, grad school and my first few jobs before a career change made ball-points obligatory. Now I'm back in a career that rewards a fine pen, and that same Pelikan is still in my pocket, still filled with Skrip black, still writing a superb fluid line with glass-smooth action and utter reliability. That's 36 years of pleasure without a single service. I wish you joy of your present and a long, fulfilling life with it.
Pelikan 120 : Lamy 2000 : Sheaffer PFM III : Parker DuoFold Jr : Hero 239 : Pilot Vanishing Point : Danitrio Cum Laude : Esterbrook LJ : Waterman's 12 and an unknown lever-filler : Lambert Drop-fill : Conway Stewart 388

MB Racing Green : Diamine Sapphire Blue , Registrar's : J. Herbin violet pensée , café des îles : Noodler's Baystate Blue : Waterman Purple, Florida Blue

#4 Pengrump



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Posted 01 June 2010 - 21:49

Happy Birthday! Enjoy your very attractive pen. I love the color.

#5 JMX



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Posted 02 June 2010 - 06:19

Nice Review! I'd buy a M620 like that in a second.

Pelikan 140 OB
Pelikan M605 blue F
Pelikan M200 transparent (Demonstrator Japan) M
Pelikan Level 65 yellow M
Pelikan Level 65 red B  
Pelikan Go! black/magenta M
Pelikan Go! black/petrol M
Pelikan M70/Go! (C/C) magenta B
Pelikan Steno red (70s)
Lamy Safari charcoal 1.5 mm italic
Lamy Safari yellow EF
Lamy Vista Eyedropper 1.9 mm italic
Reform P 120
2x Reform 1745

#6 Lorna Reed

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Posted 02 June 2010 - 07:39

Congratulations on your 18th Birthday :clap1: :clap1: :clap. Thank you for the review - this pen is on my wish list and I hope one day to have one. Enjoy yours and use it in good health!
Whatever is true,whatever is noble,whatever is right,whatever is pure,whatever is lovely,whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things.
Philippians 4.8

#7 handwriter


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Posted 02 June 2010 - 08:26

Congratulations on your 18th birthday. Nice review of a nice pen. I have the orange one, I think is the only pen that I bought just for the looks. The problem with the barrel transparency is probably even more pronounced than with the ruby red, but even so it is a beauty.
Is nice you found smaller pens to compare side to side with the 320 in your pics. The Estie and the ringtop are beautiful too.
I'm a user, baby. We love what we do not possess. Plato, probably about pens.

#8 irbyls



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Posted 02 June 2010 - 13:19

Congratulations on turning 18 and getting an awesome pen! :thumbup: :bunny01:

And... it's all your fault that I want one now. :rolleyes:

#9 jar


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Posted 02 June 2010 - 13:51

I'd love to see a comparison of this pen with say, the Dinky.

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#10 Renzhe



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Posted 02 June 2010 - 20:01

I'd buy a M620 like that in a second.

Is the Madrid not like that?

#11 haziz



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Posted 03 June 2010 - 07:48

Another fan of small pens and I have very large hands. I do use my pens posted though. Love my M150 (only a little bigger than the M300 and a bargain Pelikan piston filler). I find the M150 size to be very good, and the M400 to be the perfect size. The M600 is too big. I shudder when people criticize the M400 as too small, but to each his own. That is why extensive choice is good.

#12 rokurinpapa



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Posted 05 June 2010 - 08:49

Happy birth day and congratulations!! I have also M320 Orange.I think the flexibility of the M320nib resembles that of M1000.


#13 gary


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Posted 05 June 2010 - 11:09

Very nicely done, especially the comparison photo with the Esterbrook, the ringtop, and Lamy.
I didn't appreciate the 320's were that small. Lovely pen though.

Edited by gary, 05 June 2010 - 11:10.

#14 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 16 June 2010 - 23:33

Very Beautiful pen....has joined my list.

I don't mind a small pen, I have two, a Geha 790, and a real tiny Mercedes pen from the '50s. (Yep....both Black of course.)
I could force my self to write with the Geha with out the cap, but with the cap on it's nicely balanced.
The Mercedes is so small I can not write with out posting. The cap is long, so it posts well.

If you post it, it is lots bigger. and Is designed to post, with those two metal rings on the end cap.

I have a 120 with a steel fine nib that is not semi-flex, but a joy to write with.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,


The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.




#15 bookworm2109



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Posted 17 June 2010 - 00:34

Very good review. I enjoyed it a lot. I like the size of my Estie SJ. I wonder how this compares in size?

#16 hecya



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Posted 17 June 2010 - 01:18

Really nice pen. My most expensive pen is a Pelikan M215 and this one really looks very attractive.
Thanks for sharing.

#17 breaker



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Posted 02 October 2010 - 22:07

nice review on a nice pen
Cogito ergo sum

#18 pajaro


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Posted 31 August 2017 - 18:41

Very good review. I enjoyed it a lot. I like the size of my Estie SJ. I wonder how this compares in size?


My SJs seem enormous by comparison with my ruby red 320 or green pajamas 300.  My 320 is a fine, the 300 an extra fine.  The nibs are a pleasure to caress paper with, and the brass piston mechanism is exquisite.  I like small things, and in these two pens I have found great satisfaction.

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