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Duke Emperor Stub Fountain Pen (Duke Confucius Art Pen)

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6 replies to this topic

#1 den_lim



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Posted 25 March 2012 - 08:25

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I bought this pen last Feb from an Asian seller on eBay.
At that time, I was looking for reviews on this pen, but I found none.
It was selling at a relatively cheap price and I was aching to get a pen with this sort of nib, so I decided to risk it and buy one.
(Cheap, meaning, no one was bidding on it at that time and a similar nib on a Sailor would cost at least double what I got for this pen.)
With the import tax and everything, it came down to about US$80.

The first thing I saw when I opened the shipping carton was a big black box. Inside the box, were foam, a cloth cover and another box.
The second box was made out of lacquered wood and had some Chinese designs on it.
Inside were a bottle of ink, a converter, a cartridge and the pen itself.
I didn't really care about the cartridge or the ink so I never used them.

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The pen itself was heavy. The barrel felt and looked like it was made of wood. Very solid.
The nib had three tines, which made me think of the Platinum music nib.
The converter had "Made in Germany" written on it, which was strange, since this is a China-made pen.

I attached the converter onto the pen, loaded up some Lamy Black and started doodling.
I loooooooved this pen.
It was amazing.
It was like drawing with a brush.
Check the images out for what the pen can do.

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You can not use this pen capped.
It is perfectly balance uncapped.
Capping it would make the pen top heavy.
Just look at how big that cap is!

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There are a couple of problems I experienced with this pen.
First is the converter. The construction on the converter felt a bit shabbier than the pen itself -- which is funny because it was the only part of the pen that had "made in Germany" written on it. When I was loading up ink by twisting the converter, sometimes, the silver top of the converter would twist, opening the top of the converter instead of pulling up ink.
The second is the inks you can use with this pen. The nib makes even dry inks very wet. Lamy black is supposed to be dry but it flows very easily with this pen. I had problems with Lamy turquoise being too wet to use.

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These problems were minor to me.
I really liked this pen, so much so that I got another one a few weeks later to have one in reserve.
This is where I finally found a problem with this pen that may be a deal breaker for some.

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One the left is the first one I bought. The one on the right is the second one.
You can see a big difference with the nibs.
On the first one, the tines are all the same size, the two slits equally distributed.
The second one, the slits are biased to one side.

Performance-wise, the difference in how smooth the ink flowed in the first one compared to the second one was very small.
Some people would not notice it.
I hope this helps anyone who is thinking about purchasing this pen.
I really, really love this pen. It's my favorite one for drawing and sketching.

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#2 requiescat


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Posted 25 March 2012 - 18:23

Thanks for the review, especially the writing samples! Now I have to look at mine more closely and see the spacing of the slits on the nib; I didn't think to check that (I didn't notice anything amiss but I only did a cursory check).

#3 Uncle Red

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 16:38

Wow, I didn't realize these used 2 slits, very cool.

#4 requiescat


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Posted 26 March 2012 - 22:15

I just checked--mine look like they're either centered or just slightly off, but with my eyesight I'd need to obtain a magnifying lens to be sure. (One of the slits might be a little far to the left, but if so it's subtle.) Still, a good issue to be aware of.

#5 bitterwonder


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Posted 26 March 2012 - 22:39

Mine looks pretty ok.

#6 watch_art


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Posted 27 March 2012 - 04:49

Slits being off a little is pretty common with all makes of pen and nib and just happens sometimes. I had a Pel M405 that was WAY off. THe right tine looked like a sliver of metal compared to the left tine. Wrote smooth and wet, though.

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#7 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 19:44

pretty interesting pen :thumbup: thanks for sharing
Pens are like watches , once you start a collection, you can hardly go back. And pens like all fine luxury items do improve with time

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