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Visconti Chatterley Ripple


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28 replies to this topic

#1 saskia_madding

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 22:03

I haven't seen too many reviews for this gorgeous pen, so I thought it was my duty to finally write one. I have been wanting a silver/clear Chatterley Ripple for a while now, but hadn't been able to find one on the secondary market. I asked Bryant to keep an eye out for me, and eventually a set of the three came up for sale. I didn't want the gold/ivory or the silver/black ones, but I was desperate for the silver/clear, so I bought all three. The silver/black sold, and now I'm trying to sell the rose gold/ivory one (although I am almost caving ... I want to try the 1.3 stub nib!). Even though the set cost me a small fortune and clearly more than I can afford, I'm not sorry I snagged it.

Appearance & Design - 10/10
The first impression of this pen when I pulled it out of the box was "wow!". It is a seriously stunning pen. I'm definitely a fan of demonstrators, but this one is in a league of it's own. The silver, when shined, almost glows, and makes the contrast with the semi-visible clear barrel that much more beautiful. The silver overlay on the clear barrel allows you to see the ink slosh around inside, but it also veils it slightly, making the demonstrator aspect of this pen appealingly subtler than, for example, my Pilot Custom 823. Also, those who don't like metal grip sections, be warned - this pen has a silver grip.

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Construction & Quality - 10/10
There is nothing bad to say about the construction and quality of this pen. It is solid, no visible seams, nothing out of sorts. Flawless.

Weight & Dimensions - 9/10 This pen is the same size as other Visconti Ripples, which to my mind, is large. It is about 1/2" longer than a TWSBI when capped, and is clearly larger in terms of girth. I only took a mark off in this category because the Ripple is HEAVY, and personally, I don't adore heavy pens. Having said that, when writing with this pen unposted, the balance is so well done that it isn't a struggle to use. In my estimation, writing with this pen posted really throws off the balance. People who are used to writing with something larger than m600 Pelikans will probably have no problems at all with this pen.

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Nib & Performance - 10/10
This is Visconti's palladium, "dream-touch" nib, and it is amazing. It's smooth as silk, like writing with one of the ribbons that I used to put in my hair when I was younger - soft, smooth, and silky all at once.

Because I got this pen on the secondhand market, I only had two choices for nib - broad and fine. I went with broad, since the medium on my LE Wall Street was about as small as I'd like to go. Now that I've tried the broad, I'm not sure how I'm adjusting to it. I find that the writing angle works best being more vertical than I tend to write, and it's a bit wider than I'd like also. I suspect I'll take it to the DC Pen Show and have a nibmeister grind it down just a tiny smidgen, and also work with me on the required writing angle. Having said that, these are just my personal preferences, and the nib itself is perfect and work perfectly.

WRITING SAMPLES
Tsuki-yo and MB Gandhi:
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Comparative samples:
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Line width close up:
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Filling System & Maintenance - 9/10
I am a fan of vac/plunger/piston fillers or all types. This pen work just like my Pilot Custom 823, with the shut off valve and everything. I like this system a lot and find it a pleasure to fiddle with. However, it can be a pain to get the pen entirely clean and will require a lot of pumping, so people who do not appreciate the care and maintenance aspect of fountain pen ownership might considering sticking to using the same coloured ink inside it all the time.

I took one point off because it is difficult to let this pen dry out completely, so there always seems to be droplets of water in the barrel. This can be a problem with the Custom 823 also, but the nib on the 823 pulls right out, facilitating complete air drying. Not so with the Visconti, where a special tool (that I don't have) is required to remove the nib.

Cost & Value - 10/10
I ended up paying more for this pen second hand than I would have new. That irks me a tad because it came with some purple staining in the clear threads under the ink window that I can't get out (which can be seen in the below picture if you enlarge it).

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I have asked Bryant to keep an eye out for one without staining, but I doubt I'll see another one on the secondary market. And having said that, I'm still glad I bought this pen. I use it all the time and very much enjoy it.

Conclusion (Final score, 58/60)
I pretty much adore this pen. This is the pen that gets the most comments, and even today in the elevator someone who didn't know anything about fountain pens saw it in my hand and said, "WOW! Now *that's* a pen!" and even whistled appreciatively. :D I personally don't care what people think of me or my pens, but the sheer joy that comes with writing from this pen makes the pen worth it. I use it extremely frequently, and I don't regret buying it at all. Even if I can never end up selling the gold/ivory one. :D

Edited by simonerodrigue, 16 June 2011 - 22:07.


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#2 Ghost Plane

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 22:16

Kind of sums up why I own 6, yes SIX, Ripples in assorted nibs, colors, and finishes. :notworthy1: :notworthy1: :notworthy1:
Other than my Spirit of Life, which I prefer to keep at home, this could well be my perfect pen. :cloud9:

#3 watch_art

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 00:14

Gorgeous. Love the ink samples, too. The Penman Sapphire at the bottom looks just like my Private Reserve DC Supershow Blue. What say you?

fpn_1432247667__cropped-20150427_0641231 sigpic14481_1.gif vanness.jpg?t=1321916122


#4 jandrese

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 02:18

Thanks for the great review. Cool pen but perhaps a nicer ink display! Certainly shows off why FPs are so versitile. Now all you need is the Carbon Dream. I'm not a huge Visconti fan despite owning several but the Carbon Dream Ripple makes me tingle.

#5 Yuki Onitsura

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 04:05

Nice review of a ridiculously good looking pen! It's pens like this that make me such a huge Visconti fan.

I'm not a huge Visconti fan despite owning several but the Carbon Dream Ripple makes me tingle.


I believe Bryant has the Carbon Dream on special at the moment. Go on. You know you want to ;-)

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#6 saskia_madding

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 04:51

I've never done a side by side comparison of DC Supershow Blue and Penman Sapphire. Maybe I'll pick up a sample of the DC ink somewhere and give it a try. :)

I really do love this pen, and I'm learning to handle the broad nib. Before I fell in love with demonstrators, I fell in love with the blue Visconti Ripple. I'd still seriously consider buying it if I ever found it reasonably priced. But now I focus more on demonstrators, because I absolutely love to see the ink slosh around in the barrel.

I definitely think this is the prettiest demonstrator I own. I would love to see pictures of other people's silver/clear Ripples.

Edited by simonerodrigue, 17 June 2011 - 14:53.


#7 Jonst

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 07:23

Thanks for the great review and congratulations on the beautiful pen.

I recently bought a Carbon Dream from Bry and I was quite suprised by how large and heavy it is in the flesh. If the Carbon Dream (made of resin, carbon fibre and titanium) is heavy, the silver ripples must be very hefty indeed!!

I hope you continue to enjoy this great pen.

Best wishes

Jon

#8 breaker

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 15:25

nice review and pics!
thanks!
Cogito ergo sum

#9 bugmd

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 17:36

Kind of sums up why I own 6, yes SIX, Ripples in assorted nibs, colors, and finishes. :notworthy1: :notworthy1: :notworthy1:
Other than my Spirit of Life, which I prefer to keep at home, this could well be my perfect pen. :cloud9:



My hero, I only have a couple of them. Amazing pens. Wish that I had the free cash a couple of years ago to buy the ones that Bry had up for sale. For now, I will keep looking on the used market.
A. Don's Axiom "It's gonna be used when I sell it, might as well be used when I buy it."

#10 Ghost Plane

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 18:21

If you spot the pre-Bryant models with 18k nibs, grab them. I have a B and a stub and both are excellent. In fact, the stub was my first nib swap back in the days of Ken Jones at Visconti and I blame him entirely for my subsequent addiction :roflmho:

Managed to bag my blue Ripple on the 'Bay for $350 some years back. Don't hate me because I'm sumgal on occasion! :bunny01:

#11 Dark_Severus

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 18:37

Congratulations on your beautiful pen!

That is a really tempting Visconti.... :notworthy1: :notworthy1: :notworthy1:

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#12 bassplayrr

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 18:55

Beautiful pen. I'm envious.

Thanks for the review and pics!

#13 saskia_madding

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 20:00

Oh my god, $350?!?!?!?! Curses! :headsmack:

Are the 18k nibs so much better than the palladium dream-touch ones? What's the difference in writing experience (if you don't mind my tapping your expertise)? :)

#14 Ghost Plane

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 23:05

It's not that they're better, it's that they're great in their own way. The Pd feels softer, but the 18k are silky smooth and often feel like they're floating on the ink when properly adjusted. Sort of like having to choose between a Ferrarri and a Lamborghini :roflmho:

Think of the 18k as just a hair stiffer in feel, but still having that indefinable Visconti "something" :cloud9:

#15 reprieve

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 23:05

I have Bry's silver and clear Ripple and the ivory and rose gold Ripple. They are stunning on top of being amazing writers with cool filling systems. I love to watch the ink slosh around in my clear Ripple. They are really well-made pens; other than my Romanica, the Ripples are my most reliable Viscontis. I don't worry about them breaking. There's a reason that these pens are so hard to find now!

#16 reprieve

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 23:10

It's not that they're better, it's that they're great in their own way. The Pd feels softer, but the 18k are silky smooth and often feel like they're floating on the ink when properly adjusted. Sort of like having to choose between a Ferrarri and a Lamborghini :roflmho:

Think of the 18k as just a hair stiffer in feel, but still having that indefinable Visconti "something" :cloud9:


Floaty is a great description of the 18k nibs. I have two medium nibs that I just had to keep (even though I usually prefer Visconti's B, BB, or stub nibs) because they are so perfectly smooth and wet! The 18k stub on my Romanica is one of the nicest nibs I've ever written with. I actually have a slight preference for the 18k nibs over the palladium, but, like Ghost says, they aren't better. Just different.

#17 Ghost Plane

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 23:14

I hear you about those perfect M nibs. I have an 18k M on my black/silver Romanica and it's so perfect I kept it :embarrassed_smile: You KNOW a nib is great if I keep a size I don't normally use. :notworthy1: :notworthy1: :notworthy1:

#18 jasam

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 02:58

The Ripples are outstanding! I only have one -Black and Silver- and I use it every week with no exception!

I'm going after a clear/silver and I'm considering getting a Carbon Dream since there are only 25 Chatterley Ripples and owners do not like to sell them -bad for me :headsmack: -.

Have you bought the CF Ripple, Ghost ?

#19 Ghost Plane

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 12:45

Swapped another Visconti for it. :thumbup: The dark body looks awesome with a crimson ink on board :ninja:

#20 tanalasta

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 13:52

Beautiful. The one thing that irritates me about the Homo Sapiens is lack of an ink window and I just adore your silver/clear ripple.

Fantastic purchase!
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)






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