Like a handful of other bloggers, Brian Gray asked me if I would review his new Edison Mina for my blog. No conditions and he wanted an honest assessment. (He did offer a discount on the pens if I decided to keep them.) I wanted to share a few brief observations here on FPN, too. (It's a pet peeve of mine that bloggers just point you to their website. To me that is not in the spirit of FPN sharing and so I try to mix it up a bit.)
Appearance and Design: 4 of 5
My first impression—these pens are sleek! The pen flares at the ends—it is not a huge flare, it is very slight. Not enough to make the pen odd or difficult to house or carry. Pluses in the design for moi: flush barrel and cap, and the clipless cap. The two pens he sent me were acrylic: Black in the Extended Mina and Bedrock Flake for the Standard Mina. Call me pen-simple, but I like acrylic and these were very classy.
I give it a 4 instead of 5 because the nib collar sticks out a bit from the section. This is me being picky.
Construction & Quality: 5 of 5
Well-made, sturdy pens. What can I say? It's Edison and I am a fan.
Weight & Dimensions: 5 of 5
I think people are beginning to understand, from Okami's review and those who have seen the pen in-hand, that these are not small pens. Brian made a big deal about how the pens are for smaller hands. My expectation was to receive a small pen. They are merely thinner in the right places for those of us with small hands. There is nothing diminished about the Mina. I was very surprised by how long the Extended Mina turned out to be. (Yeah, I know, Brian publishes the dimensions but I didn't pay too much attention before hand.) The photo below shows the Mina in a Visconti storage case. The extended fits in easily but just fits! You might have trouble with a pen case if the closing flap is not adjustable. Notice that the Standard Mina is a little longer than the Nakaya Piccolo next to it.
Standard Mina Inked: Weight 21 grams. Length 5 1/4″.
Uncapped: Weight 15 grams. Length (nib tip to barrel end): 4 3/4″.
Extended Mina inked: Weight 23 grams. Length 6″.
Uncapped: Weight 16grams. Length (nib tip to barrel end) 5 1/4″.
These are pens for anyone, man or woman, who likes a slightly slimmer pen. It's not quite as slim as a Visconti Ragtime, but it is as lightweight and is noticeably thinner than the Edison Huron.
Nib & Performance: 4 of 5
Without the experience of the italic nib, I'd give this category a 5 of 5....Brian sent me a steel 1.9 italic and it had flow problems. (He thinks a small number of these italic nibs may have flow issues. Let him know if you have one of those!! It may not be you but the nib!)
He also sent me a regular fine steel nib and an 18K gold nib. (Note: no Edison logo on the gold nib for now.) These are smaller nibs than the usual Edison nib (#5 nibs as opposed to #6). Brian tunes these nibs and so they are smooth, wet and delicious to write with.
Nibs unscrew and you can change them out for other #5 nibs. Brian offers six #5 nibs in gold, steel and italic.
Filling System & Maintenance: 5 of 5
It's a c/c pen. You can also convert it to be an eyedropper. If you do that the capacity is approx. 3mls which is true for other Edisons as well. How do you maintain it? Just like your other pens... flush the nib and converter occasionally and feed your pen lots of ink!
Cost and Value: 5 of 5
As of this writiing the Minas are $100 less than other Edison offerings. I'm not going to question why. Must be the #5 nibs and the slightly slimmer profile. Cost is same for extended or standard Mina.
You get to pick the material, the nib. Seems like a good value to me!
My pals on FPN know I've been obsessed about getting my pen collection to a small number of pens. Occasionally I slip up and buy a pen I think I should have, or seemed like too good a deal to pass up...whatevah...my goal is only to buy pens I really, really want. I'd like to have both Mina profiles... but I'm only going to add one for now: an extended Mina! I'm hoping the standard may become an Urushi project (no, I have no inside information, I'm just hoping!).
If you like lightweight pens, the Mina is an excellent choice.
More photos and other observations on the blog if you feel like visiting there.
Best and kind regards,
Here's my video link, too, of the pens:
Watch me struggle over the italic.
Edited by watch_art, 02 January 2016 - 15:41.