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Waterman Charleston (Black w. GT)


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29 replies to this topic

#1 Meuge

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 00:37

I've owned a Waterman Charleston in Ivory Pearl for about a year, and have been extremely satisfied with it. However, in the meantime I've tried to get into other pens and other manufacturers. Yet aside from a Sheaffer Targa and an old Parker 21, I have yet to find another pen that I feel good writing with... and no other pen improves my handwriting like the Charleston (I got a chronic case of doctor scribbles)

After realizing that Parker Sonnet, Parker 100, and Lamy 2000 were all not for me, I decided I was going to end my searching for awhile and just enjoy writing. I wore my old Phileas nib down to a hemisphere over the past year, so I decided that I needed a new reliable pen to write my lab notes with. And being in a conservative mood, I decided to order a classic black/GT Charleston with a M nib.

So, without further ado, here's my review:

1. Appearance: 4



For me, Charleston is the essence of a 'classical' looking pen. It's simple, yet elegant... and its flowing shape is very pleasing to the eye.

The lacquer is a deep glossy black... much better than the cheap Phileas... reflective and alluring. But I can't say that it can't get better. Perhaps this is just because the lacquer on the Ivory Pearl Charleston looks so stunning in comparison.

The gold trim is well done, albeit the engravings a little geometric and shallow on the band. However, both the cap and the nib are wonderfully done.

2. Body: 4



The body is VERY solid... it almost feels like it's made of metal. It's lighter than brass though, but heavier than plastic normally feels like.

The pen feels very nice in the hand. Just heavy enough to be noticed, yet light enough for prolonged writing.

The filling mechanism is a "boring" cartridge/twist converter. However, I am a big fan of the Waterman converter. It holds about 0.75ml of ink, and is very easy to use.

3. Nib/Performance: 5




I have been spoiled by consistently reliable Waterman nibs, but this 18K beauty takes the cake. This medium nib is by far the smoothest nib of any pen that I have used, and it puts out a true medium wet line, without a hint of scratchiness.

Overall:
The Charleston is an amazing pen, especially given that you can find it under $100 online. With its superb 18K nib, a classic look, and a reliable filling system, Charleston is one-fits-all instrument that any self-respecting stylophile should be proud to call his (or her) own.

Edited by Meuge, 13 December 2006 - 05:20.


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#2 Russ

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 01:09

Meuge,

It is a handsome pen indeed.
Does the nib have a bit of flex?

Russ

#3 Judybug

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 02:22

Meuge,

Thanks for this review. It's very well done. Like Russ, I'm curious about how flexible the nib is. I like a little flex, but not so much that I feel like I don't have control of the pen. Also - give me a hint about where to find the Charleston for under $100. The best price I can find on the internet is $105.

Judybug

Edited by Judybug, 13 December 2006 - 02:24.

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#4 Meuge

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 05:25

To Russ and Judybug - the nib is springy, but has little flex to talk about. It's not nail-stiff and pleasant, but don't expect much line variation from it.

As far as price is concerned, I got it for $95 from penwa.com ...

#5 Maja

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 05:39

Hi Meuge!
Thanks for the review of the Charleston and for posting some pics of it. It's a nice-looking pen smile.gif

I like to post my pens a lot, so I was wondering if you could comment on how the pen handles when the cap is posted (if you've already posted it). If you don't want to post this pen, perhaps you can comment on how it handles unposted...

Thanks in advance!
~Maja
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#6 TMann

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 05:40

Nice review! biggrin.gif

I have a question for you: What do you think of the weight of the Charleston, compared to the Phileas? Do you write with the Charleston posted or unposted?

TMann

#7 Meuge

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 06:01

Normally I don't post my pens.

The barrel of the Phileas was much lighter than the Charleston, and sometimes posting the Phileas made it more comfortable, because it was very front-heavy when unposted.

The barrel of the Charleston is heavier and more solid, and provides a perfect balance for the nib and the feed mechanisms. Posting the Charleston is uncomfortable to me because of the size of the pen, and because once posted it becomes very rear-heavy and doesn't feel right.

I'll measure the exact weight of either pen and post them tomorrow.

Edited by Meuge, 13 December 2006 - 06:01.


#8 Maja

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 06:10

Thanks for the detailed answer, Meuge!
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#9 Guest_Saints1976_*

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 09:14

QUOTE(Maja @ Dec 13 2006, 06:39 AM)
I like to post my pens a lot, so I was wondering if you could comment on how the pen handles when the cap is posted

When posted the cap on my Charleston is not a good fit ie in my opinion you have to force it on slightly too much to stop it becoming loose and falling off. For that reason I don't tend to write with it posted. Unfortunately that means I never really use the pen much at all because unlike the reviewer I find the unposted pen rather small sad.gif

#10 zyg

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 11:08

I have three Charlestons - chrome CT and gold GT pens and a mechanical pencil. They are wonderful pens, I use them as my daily writers at home (and I write a lot).
The nib is very smooth, ink flow perfect. My both pens have F nib, as this is my favourite nib size. Waterman Florida Blue ink.
But I also witnessed an incident when Charleston GT pen fell down from the table on the carpet and split into two, just behind the golden trim on the barrel. And it was not a Persian carpet, just ordinary fitted carpet. Since that time I keep all my pens in a leather case.
Zyg

#11 Rique

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 13:42

QUOTE(Meuge @ Dec 12 2006, 09:37 PM)
The lacquer is a deep glossy black... much better than the cheap Phileas... reflective and alluring. But I can't say that it can't get better. Perhaps this is just because the lacquer on the Ivory Pearl Charleston looks so stunning in comparison.

Thanks for the review! The Charleston has been on my wish list since it was released, specially the ivory one. There isn´t much info about it on the web, though, and it is not mentioned very frequently here at FPN.

Is there any lacquer in this pen? I thought it was just a well polished plastic body - not the usual lacquer-over-brass as in most Watermans.

regards,
Rique

#12 jsonewald

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 13:47

I have a black/chrome Charleston, and it is one of my favorites. It has an F nib, but is very wet, and just glides on paper. Overall, it is the smoothest writer in my collection. Mine seems to have a plastic/resin body though. It doesn't look or feel anything like a lacquer over metal body.

#13 Meuge

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 14:21

I never said I thought it was metal... I just said it's solid and not as light as the Phileas.

As far as lacquer, I guess it could be polished plastic. I thought that it might have a clear layer on top, because of the depth and shine of the finish.

#14 Judybug

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 15:44

Meuge,

I have a Phileas medium point that is pretty broad for a medium. I also have a Phileas fine point that is comparable to a lot of mediums in other brands. Is this true of the Charleston? Is your medium Charleston nib about the same width as your medium Phileas nib?

Judybug
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#15 Meuge

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 16:19

QUOTE(Judybug @ Dec 13 2006, 03:44 PM)
Meuge,

I have a Phileas medium point that is pretty broad for a medium. I also have a Phileas fine point that is comparable to a lot of mediums in other brands. Is this true of the Charleston? Is your medium Charleston nib about the same width as your medium Phileas nib?

Judybug

How about this: the Charleston Medium is broader than the Sheaffer medium, but narrower than the Parker medium. It's about the same width as the Lamy2000 fine.

Overall, it's probably the broadest point I'd consider using every day with the size of my handwriting (the Lamy, and particularly the Parker, mediums were too broad for me).

#16 HyperCamper

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 19:33

Thanks for the review! smile.gif

I own a Charlestion Ivory GT and, although, it's been out of rotation some time now, it's one of my favourites...
"There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper and the people who consider price only are this man's lawful prey."
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#17 Maja

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Posted 15 December 2006 - 07:33

QUOTE(Saints1976 @ Dec 13 2006, 01:14 AM)
QUOTE(Maja @ Dec 13 2006, 06:39 AM)
I like to post my pens a lot, so I was wondering if you could comment on how the pen handles when the cap is posted

When posted the cap on my Charleston is not a good fit ie in my opinion you have to force it on slightly too much to stop it becoming loose and falling off. For that reason I don't tend to write with it posted. Unfortunately that means I never really use the pen much at all because unlike the reviewer I find the unposted pen rather small sad.gif

Thanks for the info, Saints!
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#18 Delivered

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Posted 31 December 2006 - 14:23

I picked up two of these at a local office store where they were being discounted. Both cost me a total of $128.00. One I gave away the other i kept.

Since I love italic nibs I sent mine off to Dillon to have it reground. It came back yesterday. Dillon's work is superlative. The pen is incredible. I have also had Dillon work on a couple of other pens with equal results.

Great service and excellent results. Yes, this is a shamelss plug for Dillon.

Regards,

Delivered

#19 Meuge

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Posted 26 January 2007 - 16:01

By popular demand, here's a writing sample.

These were done on a 5mm square-ruled page, 21lb laser paper.



#20 pvdiamon

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Posted 26 January 2007 - 16:54

I first purchased a Waterman Charleston Black/CT ball point pen. Recently, i got the fountain pen companion, fine nib. It's a great writer, and I enjoy it, the only drawback being the difficulty posting it.

The pen with a fine nib is very similar to my Aurora Ipsilon Deluxe, XF nib, but that pen has the advantage of posting with a snap so it stays on and doesn't scratch the pen.

John
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