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


Registration on the Fountain Pen Network

Dearest Visitor of the little Fountain Pen Nut house on the digital prairie,

Due to the enormous influx of spammers, it is no longer possible to handle valditions in the traditional way. For registrations we therefore kindly and respectfully request you to send an email with your request to our especially created email address. This email address is register at fountainpennetwork dot com. Please include your desired user name, and after validation we will send you a return email containing the validation key, normally wiithin a week.

Thank you very much in advance!
The FPN Admin Team






Photo

Mb 149, Mb Starwalker And Cda Leman


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 Sidestreaker

Sidestreaker

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 490 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 04:50

Posted Image


This will be my first review on my purchases for the past few months with my recent new obsession with fountain pens. Iím have been using disposable roller pens and fluid ink pens and writing in blocks almost all my life. I do occasionally use FP but has never been a fan until recently. I picked up my first MB FP because I canít seem to find anything else interesting in the FB boutique to spend my coupon on. So, there you goÖ
I did more research on FP and other manufacturers and almost any enthusiast will surely find their way to this forum. After a few weeks enjoying my Starwalker, I came across a modest Caran DíArche boutique in a neighborhood mall (just happen to walk pass 5 times within 10 minutes). Fell in love with the Leman series Ė the Black Ebony and immediately it is on my list. After losing sleep for a few days, I finally returned to the shop to pick up the Leman along with a bottle of carbon black ink. It was all smiles from the sales assistant.

In the following weeks, I was searching for more writing paper and notebooks to go with my lovely pair of FP which I use in rotation. In the same time, after much reading and research, I have decided to include the MB149 in my collection list, so there I was, going into every MB boutique that I came across to hunt down the legendary instrument with the best price. To my dismay, seemed like all the MB boutique in Kuala Lumpur has sold off all the 149 stock in the country (probably I was not the only one with the coupons around). Eventually I found rather low profile timepiece shop that also distributes MB products. And there it was, a MB 149 greeting me like a long lost friend.

After pages of ink dipping, page filling, late nights scribbling and practicing on my penmanship, hereís a story of not one but 3 pens being used almost daily. I know that there have been reviews before on the same pens but I would just like to put them together and share my experience in using them.

Posted Image


Mont Blanc Starwalker Midnight Black Resin (F nib)

Appearance and Design 7/10
Overall, I like the shape of the pen and the unique swelling cap shape. The floating star is unique and instantly recognizable as a brand and as a range of product. The ruthenium plated clip and ring gives a dark and sleek complexion to the otherwise platinum shiny finish, which I find more appealing, after comparing the two. The ruthenium nib and its minimalistic design has its charm. The shiny resin looks and feels good. Fancy.

Construction and Quality 6/10
The pen feels solid, no sloppy edges and all metal and resin parts are smooth and well made. I do have an identical shell of a fine-liner/rollerball pen and the cap seals better compared to the fountain pen, so there are some minor inconsistency in the quality. The cap screw over the other end and reduces any potential scratch marks. Overall, still a well built pen compared to many other pen/manufacturer Iíve seen so far.

Weight and Dimension 6/10
The pen is rather light and you canít really feel it in your pocket but good enough for extensive writing. Best used when capped to have the full weight of the pen for balance.

Nib and Performance 7/10
To be completely honest, I have not much of experience in writing with fountain pen, so I am just rating this based on my other 2 pens. My initial experience with this pen take a bit of getting used to like the angle of writing, applying the right pressure and maintaining a consistent composure. I had some problems initially with skips and pauses, but now that I have improved my penmanship, that has been reduced significantly and enjoying it every bit. I write tight and small and the fine nib works well for me, though MB nibs are bolder than most of its competitors, this would generally be a medium nib size.

Filling System & Maintenance. 6/10
The only complaint I have here is the cartridge system without any piston converter. If this is the only pen, Iíd imagine, Iíll be changing cartridges very often and will be running out of ink before I run out of ideas to write. So far no leakage and maintains a clean pen, even in flight.

Cost & Value 6/10
I had a coupon for Mont Blanc when I bought this pen so I paind less than half of its retail price and definitely a value for me. But with that price, you are comparing it to some great writing pens out there like Pelikan, Souveran, Duofold or Sailor. With its brand name and the status it carries, it does attract more attention with its unique appearance and design.

Conclusion (6.33)
This is my everyday pen, well almost, and Iím sure to rotate this with some other pen as they come along. It is attractive but not too flashy, unique and interesting in terms of design and most importantly, it writes well enough for me.

Posted Image

Posted Image

Caran DíArche- Leman Ebony Black(M nib)

Appearance and Design 8/10
Simple, classic and elegant. Thereís something about the proportion of this instrument that I really like, that other pens canít achieve in terms of balance of looks and appearance. It is not too flashy with its silver plated and rhodium coated trims and black lacquer finish. The golden and rhodium plated nib is proportionate to the pen and looks really elegant. Thereís strength behind its simplicity and form.

Construction and Quality 8/10
The metal barrel with lacquer finish over it does have some weight behind it. The heavier mass gives confidence and a solid feel to it, suggesting that this is made to last. Rhodium coat will maintain its shine for a longer time compared to other metals and lacquer finish is a better option to the standard resin. Iíd imagine this pen to maintain its good looks for a longer period of time. Pictures may tell a thousand words but nothing can be said about how it feels in the hands until one handles it. Superbly well built!

Posted Image

Weight and Dimension 7/10
Heavier than most pen of the same size, there are more metal parts behind the lacquer and the good weight gives a good feel and encourages me to grip better. I can even write it well not capped on a good day, but having it capped still gives a better grip. Both works for me, often the former to reduce risk of scratching the surface.

Nib and Performance 7.5/10
Smooth, stiff and slightly scratchy with my M nib, but with the right angle and the right paper, it outperforms my MB Starwalker. It skips and pauses a bit in the beginning but has improved so far. You can really feel the surface of the nib on the paper, much like a sport suspension on a sports car, bumpy but fun. I like the writing coming out from it as it has more character. Using Carbon CdA ink now and I just love the tones. Iím rotating it with my
Starwalker. Definitely not boring.

Posted Image


Filling System & Maintenance. 6/10
Piston converter, have no issues so far and easy to refill. Options to use cartridge is available as well.

Cost & Value 7/10
You know what you are paying for when you pick up this pen and it is in the solid construction quality. Nearing the price of a MB 146, itís a solid pen makes you want to pick it up again and again. I have previously bought a Caran díArche Ecridor Eclat for my wife from the same boutique and the sales person gave me a good discount for the Leman and all the ink cartridges and bottle to go with it. I am already considering of another CdA FP in the future.

Conclusion (7.25)
Iím loving it to bits. It is going to be challenging to find another pen to match up the feel and quality of a Caran díArche. Iíve tried other FP in their range like the Ecridor and Varius and all seems to have a character of their own. Its tight, its clean looking, and itís a Swiss. This is for keeps!

Posted Image

Posted Image

Meisterstuck 149- (B nib)

Appearance and Design 8/10
What can I say, its not even right for me to put a number there but I will anyway. Classy, elegant and fat. THE pen that every collector must have, sometimes more than one.

Construction and Quality 7/10
Precious resin and gold nib, clip and ring. Well built, if there are invisible cracks here (nature of resin) I canít see it. The pen is at its showroom quality now and Iím sure it will last long enough to pass to my kid when he/she gets to college.

Weight and Dimension 7/10
Though it is a large pen, my small hands finds it rather comfortable to grip and write with it. With this kind of pen, I go for the B nib to write big. When I pick up this pen, I would want to write BIG. Its weight is rather light, comfortable for extensive writing. I find that writing without the cap is better and already well balanced.

Nib and Performance 8.5/10
Super smooth, writes instantly well from the box and still continuously being impresses by the results. I donít have to explain more on the quality everyone knows.

Filling System & Maintenance. 7/10
This pen is new in my shelf and I have no issues with it so far. The piston filling systems holds lots of ink and there is no leakage for now and writes perfectly every time. This is my desk pen.

Cost & Value 6/10
Expensive and highly valued, people buy this as a must have and embrace all its imperfection. Thereís more than a pen here, it comes with reputation and a soul (as what MB likes to say about their pens). The vendor gave me 20% off discreetly to get me out of the store.

Conclusion (7.25)
A major item in the checklist has just been ticked. To possess the 149 is to carry the burden to write something worthy of it. SeriouslyÖ

Posted Image

Posted Image
My link

Life is like Chinatown signage, its cluttering, confusing but everything that you need is there, just have to look harder....

Posted Image

Sponsored Content

#2 Gojira

Gojira

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 629 posts
  • Location:Australia
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 04:56

Great review. I especially enjoyed the pictures of your journal entries.

#3 yachtsilverswan

yachtsilverswan

    Atlanta

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,100 posts
  • Location:Atlanta
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 05:07

... To possess the 149 is to carry the burden to write something worthy of it. SeriouslyÖ

Posted Image


Well said.

Your handwriting is exceptionally nice with a smooth flow; and you are a talented sketch artist.

Notice how the B nib on the MB 149 gives your handwriting some line width variation - broader vertical strokes and narrower horizontal strokes. That line width variation flows from the ovoid shape of the B and BB MB nibs - the nib tips are horizontal ovoids longer in the horizontal direction than the vertical.
Ray
Atlanta, Georgia

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point with Richard Binder ItaliFine 0.9mm/F Nib
Faber Castell's Porsche Design with Gold & Stainless Mesh in Binderized CI Broad nib
Visconti LE Divina Proporzione in Gold with Binderized CI nib
David Oscarson Valhalla in gray (Thor) with Broad Binderized CI nib
Michel Perchin LE Blue Serpent (reviewed) with Binderized CI nib
Montblanc 149 in Medium Binderized CI nib
Montblanc Pope Julius II 888 Edition (reviewed) in Bold Binderized CI nib

#4 Sidestreaker

Sidestreaker

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 490 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 08:03

@Gojira - Thanks, those sketches are done with a MB fineliner though and the text are from the Starwalker and Leman.

@yachtsilverswan - Thanks again. I just love the variation from the B nib and suddenly have the urge to expand more B or BB nibs collection. I'm still practicing on my penmanship with the 149 to get my strokes right, and learning to take my time in writing and getting my lines straight. Sometimes, I find myself more like 'drawing' the text rather than writing them. Not sure if that is a good thing. I'm working on a large A3 smooth sketch pad to really enjoy the bold nib with illustration in between similar to my A5 notepad entries shown here.

Just the other day I came across a Souveran 1000/800 with a B nib and can't help but thinking how it writes. That's next on my list ^_^

Edited by Sidestreaker, 15 December 2010 - 08:51.

My link

Life is like Chinatown signage, its cluttering, confusing but everything that you need is there, just have to look harder....

Posted Image

#5 yachtsilverswan

yachtsilverswan

    Atlanta

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,100 posts
  • Location:Atlanta
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 15:13

@yachtsilverswan - Thanks again. I just love the variation from the B nib and suddenly have the urge to expand more B or BB nibs collection...
Just the other day I came across a Souveran 1000/800 with a B nib and can't help but thinking how it writes. That's next on my list ^_^


If you like line width variation, you should also explore Cursive Italic nibs, ground from your M, B, or BB nibs by a Nibmeister. The Nibmeister regrinds the nib to create an ever more ovoid profile, creating the greatest usable line width variation with thinner horizontal strokes and wider vertical strokes. Here is a writing sample of one of my pens re-ground to a smooth wet Cursive Italic by Nibmeister Richard Binder:

Posted Image

Regarding the Pelikan M-1000 and M-800, the M-1000 nib is much springier and much more lively than the M-800 - try the M-1000 first.

Have fun.
Ray
Atlanta, Georgia

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point with Richard Binder ItaliFine 0.9mm/F Nib
Faber Castell's Porsche Design with Gold & Stainless Mesh in Binderized CI Broad nib
Visconti LE Divina Proporzione in Gold with Binderized CI nib
David Oscarson Valhalla in gray (Thor) with Broad Binderized CI nib
Michel Perchin LE Blue Serpent (reviewed) with Binderized CI nib
Montblanc 149 in Medium Binderized CI nib
Montblanc Pope Julius II 888 Edition (reviewed) in Bold Binderized CI nib

#6 hari317

hari317

    Classic

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 14,846 posts
  • Location:Mumbai, INDIA
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 15:22

Thank you for such a refreshingly different review! you have very good handwriting!
In case you wish to write to me, pls use ONLY email by clicking here. I do not check PMs. Thank you.

#7 pelman

pelman

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,175 posts
  • Location:Southeast TN
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 16:31

+1, Very nice review.

I am still looking for my first 149 or 146.

#8 Claver

Claver

    Jack of all nerd-ery.

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 67 posts
  • Location:Edmonton, AB
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 17:05

Your review tipped the scales--I've got my sights set on a 149.

Fantastic review.
Enough of this chocolaty goodness, we've got work to do.

#9 ballboy

ballboy

    A pen-intent man shall pass

  • FPN Supporter - Rhodium

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 650 posts
  • Location:Edge of The Peak District
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 17:18

Having bought a 149 and Leman this year, I agree completely with your assessment of these fine writing instruments, especially the Leman.
Roger


Magnanimity & Pragmatism

#10 lewis

lewis

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 284 posts
  • Location:Maidstone, UK
  • Flag:

Posted 15 December 2010 - 22:48

I was bought a Leman this year and agree it is a stunning pen. I don't know of any other pen that is as well made as the Leman.

A 149 remains very much on my wish list. Although I think I'm more likely to go for an M800 or M1000 first.

Great review and thanks for taking the time to share.

:thumbup:
Fountain pens aren't a collection, it's an insatiable obsession!

Shotokan Karate: Respect, Etiquette, Discipline, Perseverance

#11 ballboy

ballboy

    A pen-intent man shall pass

  • FPN Supporter - Rhodium

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 650 posts
  • Location:Edge of The Peak District
  • Flag:

Posted 16 December 2010 - 01:04

I think, lewis, you even have the same pen as the OP.
You'll love the 149, I'm sure, but can understand going for a Pelikan first if you wish to change nibs.
I still find my Leman a great presence in the hand and probably my favourite still, even with the 149 on board. International cartridge/converter system is a neat flexible filling arrangement too.
Roger


Magnanimity & Pragmatism

#12 Sidestreaker

Sidestreaker

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 490 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 16 December 2010 - 06:52

Thanks everyone.

@yachtsilverswan - Thanks again for the tip! Oh, I'm considering try out some flex nib as well, any recommendation?
I was about to further find out the difference between the M800 vs M1000. I feel adventurous to commit to M1000 if I don't get a chance to try both :).

@ballboy and lewis - the Leman is almost my everyday pen now. It is progressively taking the majority of the pages in my journal now. Also, just to share, during my purchase of this pen, I had the chance to try out the Varius series, Ivanhoe in particular and it writes slightly smoother and the barrel which I thought was too thin, provides a good grip and well balanced with the cap on. Again, the quality is exceptionally good.
My link

Life is like Chinatown signage, its cluttering, confusing but everything that you need is there, just have to look harder....

Posted Image

#13 lewis

lewis

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 284 posts
  • Location:Maidstone, UK
  • Flag:

Posted 16 December 2010 - 16:55

Interesting to note that even though you have those 2 stunning pens, the Leman still remains your favourite. Makes me wonder why its not featured more here.

Ballboy - how would you rate the 149 against the M1000? I've read the comparisons on here, but they seem to be slightly biased, depending which forum you are reading it in. I am sure I will own the 149 one day but it's just SOO much more expensive than the M1000. I can get change out of £300 for a new M1000, whereas a new 149 is nearer £600 - is it really that much better?

To get back on track - the Leman is simply an awesome pen - I can't fault it. Some may prefer a longer pen, but if posted, it has a decent length.

Glad there are at least us 3 fans on the FPN!
Fountain pens aren't a collection, it's an insatiable obsession!

Shotokan Karate: Respect, Etiquette, Discipline, Perseverance

#14 ballboy

ballboy

    A pen-intent man shall pass

  • FPN Supporter - Rhodium

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 650 posts
  • Location:Edge of The Peak District
  • Flag:

Posted 16 December 2010 - 19:08

Good job this is a multi-pen review; that way we're not going off topic with all these pens!

lewis; I think the Leman still has the edge on my affections regarding its filling system and sheer build quality. Its nib is wetter and smoother (wide medium vs MB fine medium,) and the pen is satisfyingly weighty. Aesthetically it is uniquely entrancing.

The 149 is surprisingly delightful to write with: big, yet comfortable to hold, nicely balanced, even when posted and has a nice sense of occasion to writing with that huge swaying nib which is a delight to control. Only thing is, I'd probably plump for a medium to broad or even stub on such a sized pen. However, since I was going for vintage (pre 1985) for ebonite feed and single barrel construction, this is what I bid on and won.

Overall, it's a close thing between these two, but if I only had to have one, it would be the Leman for now...until I try a broad/italic 149.

I got the 149 at way below today's prices of £490, and feel none the worse for that.
Roger


Magnanimity & Pragmatism

#15 georges zaslavsky

georges zaslavsky

    vintageandmodernpenslover

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 12,033 posts
  • Location:France
  • Flag:

Posted 18 December 2010 - 14:24

congrats on the pens :thumbup: and thanks for the review. You should try a vintage 149. You will be delighted.
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

#16 nicholasyeo

nicholasyeo

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,809 posts
  • Location:Singapore
  • Flag:

Posted 18 December 2010 - 16:58

Good god, those are elaborate, beautiful sketches! I am all admiration... :puddle:
Lovely 149, now I feel like getting myself one.

#17 breaker

breaker

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 580 posts

Posted 29 January 2011 - 08:50

very nice review on a great pen
thanks!
Cogito ergo sum






Sponsored Content




|