I’ve bought a couple of Edison pens and am very pleased with the quality, nibs and looks of both. So it was with the realisation that it is possible to buy good quality non massed produced pens that I saw one of Kens pens, his aptly named Tiger Eye, in the Classified section.
I asked him for some dimension details and took a risk. The pen arrived 10 working days after my paypal payment and I quickly had a look at the detail before leaving for work. And what detail!
The finish of the pen is flawless and possibly more noticeable because it is unspoilt by a clip. I don’t think the pictures do this pen justice but it is beautiful: a swirling mix of black, deep mottled brown, deep orange, light orange along with pearlescent patches that twist and move as the pen is turned
if I ever see a tiger’s eye up close (and have the presence of mind to compare them) and it’s not like this pen I’ll be surprised and not a little disappointed!
The nib comes from Meisternibs, which is to say Brian Edison, and is a steel medium, like Brian’s pens, it is easily removed for replacement or cleaning.
I like steel nibs and after Ken mentioned that he had write tested the nib I found it was smooth, and although in my view narrow for a medium, a perfectly acceptable nib. I dabble at grinding my own nibs, and with the ready availability of a replacement should I get it wrong, I ground this into a cursive italic that I would describe as a fine and very smooth.
After filling it with Visconti blue I sat down and wrote a letter. I have quite large hands and the length of the body is perfect without being too long or short, the pen is light, has a very comfortable diameter section that tapers with a small lip at the nib end, has no issues at all regarding balance and really is a joy with which to write. About the only distraction I had: I use a daylight LED desk lamp when I write, the light picks out every flash of pearlescent colour and I ended up spending time looking at the pen whenever a glint caught my eye!
I don’t know if Ken adjusts the flow of his nibs but I consider it has perfect flow rate for my tastes, that is to say not too wet but enough that the true colour of the ink gets laid on the paper.
If I had to find fault with anything it is the converter:
I’ve seen Ken sell pens because he is raising money to buy supplies for making more pens, obviously tying money up in accessories isn’t something he wants to do. The converter is a bought in unit at the budget end of the scale, it works perfectly and when you’re writing it makes no difference but I will at some point order a replacement from Meisternibs, mainly because I think a pen of such high quality deserves a high quality converter.
I realised that after a few pages of writing the pen suits my hand perfectly and I really enjoy using it. I have a bit of a thing for yellow and orange pens, so after a few days I contacted Ken and asked if he had or could get any material that would fit the bill. As it happens he had a yellow and an orange he had been thinking about working with, I told him as soon as he’d made them I’d buy them from him and sat back to await the PM saying they were done. It duly arrived and I paid for the pens: another 10 day wait!
Well, they arrived today, and they too are beautiful, both flawless and both of fantastic quality. By that I don’t mean fantastic quality for the price, I mean fantastic quality – period.
The orange pen
is made from an acrylic that looks like the one used for the Dolce Vita, with what looks like pieces of marble throughout the material, it gives a wonderful and continuous changes in the reflected light.
The yellow has what are probably black veins running through it,
but I’m going to say they’re darkest blue because they have shadows that look like deep blue ink spreading through the depths of the acrylic, hence my choice of ink: Diamine Midnight.
The nibs, one medium, one broad are both very smooth and once again have a flow rate that I find suits my preferences well, as I did with the Tiger Eye, I will grind these nibs myself, probably at the weekend and give them a full writing test then. I’ve not included a writing sample because this is about Kens pens not my nib grinding, choice of ink or my writing.
Capped: 14.8 cm
Open: 13.6 cm
Cap diameter: 16 mm
Body diameter: 15 mm
Section diameter: 10-9 mm
Does not post.
Weight: 24 grams
Without cap: 16 grams
I suppose the key question to ask when summing up a pen is: “would I buy another one?” I mentioned quality and price before and whilst these are excellent quality writing instruments, they are also, in my opinion at least, an absolute steal for what Ken asks for them. So the answer is “Yes” without hesitation, Ken’s just got to find an acrylic that shouts to me, that said his recent Bamboo pen is also very appealing...
Edited by MrClegg, 18 October 2011 - 22:02.