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Visconti Homo Sapiens M Nib


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44 replies to this topic

#1 saltypete

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 03:36

I am very new to the world of fountain pens and I will be the first to admit that my experience is limited. However being a newbie gives me the chance to write a review without too many preconceptions or ingrained biases which some long time fp users may have.
When I joined Fountain Pen Network one of the first reviews I read was for the Visconti Homo Sapiens. The interesting choice of material and the gorgeous two-tone nib appealed to me and I decided that one day I would own one of these pens. That day came a little sooner than I expected, and on Friday I took delivery of a Homo Sapiens. Below are my thoughts on this beautiful writing instrument.
I should firstly note that because of my inexperience with fps I have only 4 pens from which to make my comparisons. They are a Parker IM (F Nib), Waterman Expert (F Nib), Waterman Carene (F Nib), and a Pelikan Souveran 800 (F Nib).

1. Packaging and Box

Upon opening the package it was clear that the packaging on this pen was presented far better than any of my other pens. Yellow Visconti cardboard outer with a faux leather clamshell case inside. The case itself holds the pen, a bottle of Visconti Ink, cleaning cloth (which I have read is impregnated with a substance to clean the bronze fittings), a book with mini DVD, and a 'nib shaped' bookmark. There is a drawer below the main part of the case that holds an instruction book and has the pen's serial number in it. All around I was impressed with the presentation of this pen.

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[/b]2. The Pen Itself[/b]

The lady who took my order for the Homo Sapiens said to me that she did not think the pen was particularly attractive. I must disagree with her. I think that it is an absolutely stunning piece of engineering. The lava resin body and cap has silvery flecks through it (which I assume has something to do with the lava), and is offset by the bronze fittings. I think the combination works. The pen is not shiny in the way my black and gold Waterman Expert is, but has sort of a matte finish. The body of the pen feels smooth and cold to the touch but is easy to grip when writing for long periods. As others have said, it kind of feels like a dense rubber but tapping it reveals that it is quite solid and hard.
This is a large and heavy pen, even when compared to the Pelikan 800. I have not been posting the cap when I write as i find that it adds too much weight to the back of the pen. I don't know if this pen is classed as oversized but I think it is big although I find it to be comfortable to grip and write with.

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3. The Nib

I know little about fp nibs but I know that I like the Homo Sapiens Dreamtouch nib. I opted for the medium nib (all my other pens have F nibs) and I think I chose well. When compared to the nib of my Pelikan 800, it is obviously wider (being an M) and feels wetter. I know others have called their HS nibs 'firehoses', mine is quite wet and does bleed through poor quality paper but on decent paper it writes very well. I have found the nib to be super smooth requiring no pressure at all. It provides far less tactile feedback than the Pelikan which i don't mind in the least. So far it has been a joy to write with and I can see this pen becoming my favourite writer. I am using Visconti Blue ink and it works well, I love the colour too. I am not confident enough in my own handwriting to provide a sample in this review, but suffice to say I love the way this pen writes.
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4. The Filling System

The only comparison I can make is with my Pelikan 800 and I have to say that I prefer the piston fill of that pen to the HS's 'power filling system'. I followed the instructions and had no trouble filling the pen but after only three days (of admittedly heavy writing) I needed to refell. I got over a week from my Pelikan but it only has a F nib and puts out far less ink than the HS, and I might not have mastered the HS filling system yet. All in all I'm not worried if I have to refill my HS every 3 or 4 days as it will give me a chance to try other inks in it.

5. Overall

Overall I feel very positive about this pen. OK, it is not cheap, but I see it as a cut above everything else in my humble collection. The choice of materials make it an interesting piece to have in a collection, while the dreamtouch nib makes it write beautifully. As a pen for a realitive newcomer to the world of fps, I think it was a good choice. The only downside is that it may spoil me for all other pens.

Pete

Edited by saltypete, 22 August 2010 - 05:34.

My Pens: Visconti Homo Sapiens M, Pelikan M800 F, Sailor 1911 Realo B, Lamy 2000 M,Conway Stewart 28 M,1946 Parker Duofold M,Waterman Carene F, Waterman Expert F, Parker IM F
My Inks: Iroshizuku Tsuki Yo, Iroshizuku Ku Jaku, Iroshizuku Shin Ryoku, Iroshizuku Tsyu Kusa, Visconti Blue, Stipula Calamo, Pelikan Black

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#2 langere

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 03:39

Pete, great review! Reviewing pens is one of the greatest services you can perform and you really captured the essence of the pen - I have one too and agree with you on all points.

Erick

Visconti Giardino dell'Eden "F" nib running J. Herbin 1670 Caroube de Chypre 

PENBBS 500 "F" nib running Iroshizuku Murasaki-Shikibu

Platinum Tiger and Pine 3776 "F" nib running J. Herbin Lierre Sauvage

 

 


#3 jips123

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 08:56

Nice review! But seeing some nice writing examples, would be the icing on the cake.

#4 WendyNC

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 11:47

The only downside is that it may spoil me for all other pens.


Not all others, just many of them.

Lovely, fresh review and presentation.
I came here for the pictures and stayed for the conversation.

#5 Yuki Onitsura

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 12:02

Very nice review and some lovely photos to boot. The powerfiller is a bit tricky to fill completely without Visconti's travelling inkpot but if you want a better fill, dip it in and push the plunger down all the way as you would normally. After that, pull the plunger all the way back out, hold the pen nib up and push the plunger in until ink starts bubbling at the nib. Dip the nib into a bottle of ink and push the plunger the rest of the way in. That should give you pretty close to a complete fill.

Yuki
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#6 mandarintje

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 13:24

Very nice review =)
may I ask...about the dreamtouch nib... does it have flexibility? and line variation if you add a little more pressure?
I've never used a palladium nib before.

It's most definitely on my hit list, it's a lovely pen.
you can never get it wrong, because you can never get it done!

#7 akrishna59

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Posted 23 August 2010 - 04:40

very well done review, nowadays there is a lot of talk on h s. i am truly happy for you and the way you have presented it i dont think you are a newbie any longer. you see time can be compensated by spirit and passion, in a few aspects in this world.

rgds.

krishna.
ladies and gentlemen write with fountain pens only.

#8 777

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Posted 23 August 2010 - 12:44

Very good job on your review!

This is one of those pens that someday I hope to maybe attain. It's expensive though, so that may never become a reality...

Since I can't have it right now I'm more than happy to read all about it! I personally think it's a VERY attractive pen. I'm not sure why the sales lady would have said otherwise...

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777

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#9 tanalasta

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Posted 25 August 2010 - 14:54

Beautiful review and photos... :thumbup:

I also agree that there is a simple elegance and function in the design of the HS. It's durable, scratch resistant and doesn't need quick as much TLC in daily use as a MontBlanc (I've already dropped the Dumas once and the HS twice).

The nib and feed can be easily adjusted (or maladjusted). Mike did a fantastic job regrinding and altering the flow of my VIsconti in what is one of my most delightful writers and one I use daily for journaling.

You have a nice collection by the way, inc. the Peli M800.


In Rotation: MB 146 (EF), Noodler's Ahab bumblebee, Edison Pearl (F), Sailor ProGear (N-MF)
In storage: MB 149 (18k EF), TWSBI 540 (B), ST Dupont Olympio XL (EF), MB Dumas (B stub), Waterman Preface (ST), Edison Pearl (0.5mm CI), Noodler's Ahab clear, Pilot VP (M), Danitrio Densho (F), Aurora Optima (F), Lamy 2000 (F), Visconti Homo Sapiens (stub)

#10 spinningtrees

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 17:47

Great review! I have been drooling for this pen ever since I read about it in a catalog some time ago. I held one (uninked) in a pen store and it felt light, though maybe with ink it comes in heavier.
When my book is published (if it makes any money) then this pen just might be mine!
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#11 Glaurung

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 18:18

I held this pen in a store uninked, too; and the nib has some flex to it (against a thumbnail). One day, this pen will be my next "major" acquisition.
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#12 raulfragoso

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 21:02

Thanks for the great review ! I also have the Homo Sapiens with a stub Palladium 1.3mm nib and it's one of my favorite pens. The texture is quite unique if compared to any other pens, and the tactile experience is really incredible.
[]'s
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#13 inkyindi

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 22:21

I know others have called their HS nibs 'firehoses', mine is quite wet and does bleed through poor quality paper but on decent paper it writes very well.


Know what's funny? I have the HS with a B nib and I find that, to my tastes, the B writes like a M! I have asked Bry to hold a BB nib for me to replace the B I'm using now.

#14 kanajlo

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Posted 30 August 2010 - 18:45

When compared to the nib of my Pelikan 800, it is obviously wider (being an M) and feels wetter. I know others have called their HS nibs 'firehoses', mine is quite wet and does bleed through poor quality paper but on decent paper it writes very well.


I certainly agree, Pete, as regards the wetness and how the HS compares to the M800. Thanks for the fine review.
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#15 laser8

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 07:05

Very nice pen, and nice review too!

#16 ampatb

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Posted 04 September 2010 - 04:19

I have a Homo Sapiens pen with a fine nib. I love the way the pen looks, feels and writes. My only complaint is that there seems to be a problem with ink leaking from the point where the nib and section meet. I usually get a small ink stain if I hold the pen right at the bottom of the section. This problem has manifested itself on two different pens. Is this a design issue? Anybody else have this problem?

#17 raulfragoso

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Posted 04 September 2010 - 04:26

I have a Homo Sapiens pen with a fine nib. I love the way the pen looks, feels and writes. My only complaint is that there seems to be a problem with ink leaking from the point where the nib and section meet. I usually get a small ink stain if I hold the pen right at the bottom of the section. This problem has manifested itself on two different pens. Is this a design issue? Anybody else have this problem?


I had issues with ink sweating at the bottom of the section too, and many others have complained about the same issue with the Homo Sapiens. But after unscrewing the nib, giving it a good clean and putting it back with a bit of silicone grease around the threads, as suggested by Bryant and others, it's been behaving well for a couple of months now without any any leaks.
[]'s
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#18 raulfragoso

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Posted 04 September 2010 - 04:28

oops, double post

Edited by raulfragoso, 04 September 2010 - 04:28.

[]'s
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#19 rubyeyespenlover

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Posted 04 September 2010 - 14:05

Nice review, really! :thumbup:

Not so nice not having yet the pen on my desk!!!! :headsmack:
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#20 Inked

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Posted 04 September 2010 - 15:43

Hello SaltyPete

I was fortunate enough to hold one of these in my hand on my last trip to Laywine's in Toronto.
A very unusual and wonderful sensation. Cool at first touch, but warms up in seconds.
A lovely lightness under your fingers, like the pen is breathing or wicking away the heat and moisture from your skin.

You have a very special pen. The HS is a special creation. Congrats to you and Visconti.

Thank-you for the review and happy trails with your HS.

Inked








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