Appearance & Design: 8
It's a Capless Decimo, which means it looks like any other Capless Decimo you're familiar with. It comes in a plastic bag in a hinged plastic box, which is essentially what all the standard Pilot range come in. I think the pen is very pleasant and attractive for what it is, but doesn't really inspire awe with its design. The finish has a very fine pearly or glittery look not dissimilar to some nail polishes. It doesn't beat you in the face and in fact is something you tend to sit and stare at for a while, just admiring the execution. The clip design is not bad, but sort of breaks the flow of the rest of the pen. The Capless nibs, in my opinion, are the biggest weakness in the appearance of the pen.
Construction & Quality: 9
I've always liked the fit and finish of the Capless models, and this one is no exception. I would give it a 10, but I've never really loved the way the clip is attached, though I have never encountered a problem with it. The click mechanism, for what it's worth, is well-executed and doesn't feel cheap or janky at all. For those unfamiliar with Pilot Capless fountain pens, the nib retracts into the body, and a door closes over the nib to protect it and keep it from drying out. I find that this works well and does not feel or look nearly as gimmicky as it initially sounds.
Weight & Dimensions: 10
I like a little density to my pens, though I do not like them to feel heavy. The Decimo is not a bulky pen and is not extremely heavy, though it has just the right amount of heft to tell someone that it's a nice pen, and it is nice and stable in the hand when writing. If you like featherweights like the 78G, this may not be for you, but it's much lighter than the standard Capless, without losing any of the "quality" feel. Some find the clip to be a nuisance, while others find it to be harmless or even helpful in the same way the triangular grip of some pens is helpful. I find it ever-so-slightly positive for my grip style, but if you have an unorthodox way of holding the pen, you might want to give it a try before you commit.
Nib & Performance: 9
I originally was turned off by Capless Decimo pens because I thought the click mechanism was just a gimmick. I tried one in a pen store, and I completely changed my mind. Not because of the click, which I really don't care that much about. I fell in love with the Decimo for the nib. Since then, I've experienced a few different Capless nibs, and my first still remains my favorite for its extreme smoothness.
The EF nib of the new Decimo is quite a bit finer than the F model. The tines are aligned pretty well and are pretty symmetrical...very normal in my experience with Japanese fines. I've had very good overall luck with Japanese fine points, and hesitate to ever get a German EF nib again, though I'm sure good ones are out there somewhere.
How fine is it? Well here's a photo with the EF on the left and the F on the right:
The line it puts down is comparable to the line that I get from the Pilot Penmanship EF nib in my 78G Sunagami. It is slightly dry and can really put down a spiderweb. No picture of that yet, but perhaps I'll add one later. The nib is smooth for its size; while it does not float over the paper as easily as my favorite F nib does, it is not scratchy or catchy at all. It is what one would expect from a quality Pilot EF nib...crisp, smooth, with a tiny bit of feedback. It is possible that with some use the nib will break in a bit, widening very slightly and becoming smoother. I have only tried Sailor Kiwaguro in it so far, and I may try an Iroshizuku soon if I have a chance.
Filling System & Maintenance: 7
Came to me with an empty cartridge (and the metal cover for it) as well as a CON-50 converter. The CON-50 and CON-20 are pretty weak in terms of ink capacity, and they are one of the biggest flaws in an otherwise very nice pen. I wonder how much ink this EF nib could possibly go through in a day, but some people like having 1ml or more, which requires either a syringe with cartridges (my preference, normally), or a CON-70 which of course does not fit in the Capless models. I filled mine with the CON-70 and it's no big deal for me really, but I will likely later switch to refilled cartridges, as that gives me a much better look at ink levels without unplugging a converter (the CON-50 doesn't give you much of a window when installed in the Capless).
Cost & Value: 8
I got this from a shop here in Taiwan for 3900NT Dollars (just over 132 USD at time of writing). It is not a cheap pen, especially for those just starting down the road in fountain pens, but they really are great pens. I hear lots of people talk about how great it is to use one-handed or how convenient or quick it is, and I just don't really see myself buying this pen for that reason. The nibs are excellent to downright fantastic at times regardless of deployment method, and I consider these among my best pens.
The 2012 colors of the Capless Decimo may include something that speaks to you, or it may not. Though I like it, I'm not sure the
Hope this has been helpful! Sorry about the relative lack of pics and the quality of the provided ones so far.
Edited by XiaoMG, 09 March 2012 - 08:14.