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Pens By Drgoretex Aka Ken


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18 replies to this topic

#1 MrClegg

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 18:57

I can’t tell you why but I’ve been less and less tempted by mass produced pens of late and have found myself looking for pens that are made by people to whom I can speak, or at least speak to in electronic terms.
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!

Tiger1.jpg

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

Tiger3.jpg Tiger6.jpg

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.

Tiger4.jpg

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:

Tiger7.jpg

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

Orange Flake.JPG

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.

Orange Flake5.jpg Orange Flake6.jpg

The yellow has what are probably black veins running through it,

yellow2.jpg

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.

yellow4.jpg

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.

Kens pens4.jpg Kens pens3.jpg

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...

Craig

Edited by MrClegg, 18 October 2011 - 22:02.

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#2 dcpritch

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 19:09

Those are beautiful pens, and a great review. Well done, Craig! I'm sure Ken will be busier than ever in the near future.
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#3 whichwatch

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 19:10

I agree - Ken's pens are terrific. I bought a Doce Vita look alike a while ago and it was drop dead gorgeous. I eventually sold it on Classifieds, but sure wish now that I had kept it. I have thought several times about contacting Ken and asking that he make another. And, as you said, it was quite a bargain at the price he asked.

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#4 olivier78860

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 19:57

Nice cigar pens. Is there a way to have a custom nib replacing the "iridium point germany" one in the making process ?

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#5 MrClegg

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Posted 18 October 2011 - 20:20

Nice cigar pens. Is there a way to have a custom nib replacing the "iridium point germany" one in the making process ?


If you want something specific, i.e. 14 or 18 CT you can purchase one here: www.meisternibs.com if you want a custom grind you could contact Brian Edison (Meisternibs is his site) he can do a number of different grinds, alternatively you could ask Ken to ship it directly to a nib meister of your choice.

Craig

Edited by MrClegg, 18 October 2011 - 21:13.

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#6 Lloyd

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 02:08

Can you use it as an eyedrop filler?
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#7 nightwing

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 02:14

Gorgeous pens! I especially love the Tiger's Eye. I hope Ken has more of that material in stock... it really is stunning.

Do you know what size Meister nib is used for these pens? (#5, #6, etc.)

#8 jandrese

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 04:47

Fantastic, thanks for sharing. Brian Edison at Meisternibs. I may be slow on the uptake (it is late at night) but I assume this is Brian Gray of Edison pens. Right?

#9 raging.dragon

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 05:27

Do you know what size Meister nib is used for these pens? (#5, #6, etc.)


They look like #6 nibs to me.

#10 raging.dragon

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 05:28

Fantastic, thanks for sharing. Brian Edison at Meisternibs. I may be slow on the uptake (it is late at night) but I assume this is Brian Gray of Edison pens. Right?


It would be Brian Gray of both Edison Pens and Meisternibs.

#11 saketb

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 07:06

Very beautiful and its for sure an eye candy. It reminds me of a pen from the Sheaffer 300 series - THE IRIDESCENT BLUE BARREL.

But, this one is something different and I like the Orange the most...

Great review.
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#12 Uncle Red

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 16:43

What's Ken's website?

#13 MrClegg

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 19:21

To answer a few questions...

I've not tied it as an eyedropper but I don't see why not: it's only a bit of silicon grease on the threads.

Yes it is Brian Grey of Edison Pens and yes he is also the man behind Meisternibs - I meant to say it was Brian AT Edison sorry for the confusion.

Yes the nib is a #6 size.

I don't think Ken has a website - but he responds to PMs.

Craig
"Those Who Know What's Best For Us, Must Rise And Save Us From Ourselves."
Witch Hunt - Neil Peart


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#14 dbranam

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Posted 20 October 2011 - 14:37

Gorgeous! Thanks for sharing both your experience and the photos. Ken has a thread for a recent 'bamboo' pen in the penturning forum titled "and now for something completely different" That one is also very very lovely.

#15 KrazyIvan

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Posted 20 October 2011 - 16:23

I also have one of Ken's pens. Well, a kit pen just because I liked the shape of "El Grande". I saw the orange one but wanted blue. Ken made it happen.

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El Grande- Uncapped by IvanRomero, on Flickr

#16 GemMayhem

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 07:33

Craig,
Thanks for sharing the photos of your pens crafted by Ken. They are incredible and the colors are out of this world! :notworthy1: I'd be hard-pressed to pick a favourite. They look like a dream to write with and I hope you have countless hours of enjoyment from them. :)

@KrazyIvan - I can see why you were drawn to the crushed blue acrylic. That's a dynamite pen - gorgeous!!! :thumbup:

I agree that there's something magical about a pen that's handcrafted by someone you can "talk" to. It makes it all the more personal and special. Not to mention, it's a wonderful way to support talented artisans, like Ken. :thumbup:

All the Best,
Gem

#17 lovemy51

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 08:34

that Tiger Eye looks delishhhhhh!!!!!! :puddle:
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#18 glennalvia

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Posted 14 December 2011 - 00:52

Very beautiful pens and very good review. All the more that I'd like a couple of these pens for myself!!

#19 dannyboy

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Posted 14 December 2011 - 01:29

Those are truly stunning pens, especially the Tiger Eye and the Orange one. Thanks for a review that reveals the great quality of Ken's pens with words & photos!






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