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Kaigelu 356


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21 replies to this topic

#1 bhbarto

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 17:58

Here is a quick handwritten review of the Kaigelu 356. Please excuse my poor printing and any typos contained in the review. The second pen in the first picture is a Parker "51".

The bottom line for the Kaigelu 356 is this: It is a high quality Chineese pen similar to the Parker Sonnet. The pen required some initial nib tweeking to improve the ink flow, but this pen is good enough to be my daily writer. Highly recommeded.

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#2 isellpens

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 23:56

Great review and I am considering adding this one to our line-up at www.isellpens.com . :eureka:

#3 richardandtracy

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 07:45

If you have one of the twist c/c's that has a black central connector band on it and a metal ball in the c/c, I'd advise you to keep an eye on corrosion of the ball inside. I have three pens (a K356, K362, K363) where the ball has corroded and discoloured the ink, and also produced sludge that could potentially clog up the pen.

Other than that I would wholeheartedly agree with your assessment, even going so far as to say I think the silver version is the equal of the Sonnet Flighter, CT (the lowest price one).

Regards,

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#4 RCC

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 09:37

Thanks for the review. I just got one of these after reading Richard's review. I always liked the look and feel of the Sonnet but the two I had were not good writers. One was scratchy and the other suffered from seriously reduced flow on the upstroke, resulting in a very dry dragging writing experience.

Then I got this pen for $7 and it writes great and is very very smooth.

I do not know how well that snap on cap will hold up over time, but I have to say the one I bought is a very nice little pen and a very nice writer.

Glad yours worked well too.

#5 Jorge

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 11:56

Thanks a lot for the review.
Could you be a bit more specific on those "minor adjustments" to the nib that you had to do in order to improve the ink flow?
I own one as well, but mine is a bit dry and has a tendency to skip, so probably you found how to change that.

#6 bhbarto

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 13:53

Thanks a lot for the review.
Could you be a bit more specific on those "minor adjustments" to the nib that you had to do in order to improve the ink flow?
I own one as well, but mine is a bit dry and has a tendency to skip, so probably you found how to change that.


I am by no means a nib professional, but I do know two tricks that can make a poor writing pen into a great writing pen.

First, if a pen is writing very dry, it is possible to GENTLY pull the tines apart from each other a small distance so that they are perhaps the thickness of a piece of paper or two farther apart. Secondly, the adjustment most likely put the times out of sync vertically, this will need to b e checked with a magnifying glass. Simply adjust the times carefully again with your fingers.

I would suggest additional research here on FPN before attempting any adjustment. The nib on the 356 is as hard as a nail, so it should survive some attempts at adjustment. Good luck.

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#7 lovemy51

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 07:38

i have this one and never had to do any nib tweaking -just fortunate, i guess.

but the pen came with a cracked jewel :gaah: . got a refund (seller offered it) and kept the pen. not bad, hey?

thx for the review.

#8 watch_art

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 13:26

This is a really good little pen. Little. Too small for my preferences - but still a great little writer. Good review. Thanks!

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#9 bhbarto

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 15:01

This is a follow-up to my initial review that I posted a few weeks ago. The 356 is holding up pretty good, no major issues to report with the exception of the "ball" in the cc filler as noted by richardandtracy. I noticed that the ball in my 356 had corroded as well, and had left a rust color stain on the sides of the clear plastic of the cc filler.

I decided to try to remove the ball from the cc filler. I pulled the black section of the filler from the clear section, and with a little pressure they came cleanly apart. The ball shot across the room, and upon inspection, it was rusted and corroded. The two parts of the cc filler snapped easily together, and the filler operated perfectly now without the ball.

Just on a whim, I ordered another 356 in stainless steel, and if it has a ball in the cc filler I will remove it prior to inking the pen for the first time.

The 356 is still a great pen for the money, it is just a shame the Kaigelu opted to cut corners in the manufacture of the cc filler for the pen. Luckily, it is a easy problem to remedy.

bhbarto

Pen(s) Currently in Rotation:

ASA Daily (Medium) - Iroshizuku Murasaki-shikibu

Sailor 1911 Large (Broad) - Iroshizuku Tsukushi

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#10 kma335

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 02:56

This pen and my Jinhao 159 are my first two pens! They have not arrived yet but I can't wait :) Does the Kaigelu write smoothly?

#11 richardandtracy

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Posted 17 September 2012 - 09:34

My K356 nib was not perfect when I got it, I described what I did to it in the comparative review here: http://www.fountainp...ith-lookalikes/

Regards,

Richard.

#12 kma335

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 13:30

The nib on my Kaigelu out of the box was perfect for me. The ink flow kept up nicely and it wrote quite smoothly and still does.

#13 richardandtracy

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 15:35

That's great to hear.

Regards,

Richard.

#14 brownargus

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 20:03

I have just received a new K 356 which came in a slip case from Hong Kong. I filled it with Diamine Sapphire ink and am pleased to say it wrote perfectly from the start. The nib is a medium but presents more like a European medium/fine and is very smooth - almost as smooth as my Parker Sonnet which it emulates. The finish is very good and belies it's cheap price (£5.80 incl. postage). I checked the converter filler following the comments in the foregoing posts and am pleased to report that the small ball in the converter seems to have been dispensed with as there isn't one in the pen I received. All-in-all an excellent pen for everyday use and certainly on a par with the two Baoer 388 pens I have.

Edited by brownargus, 18 October 2012 - 20:16.

Favourite pens in my collection (in alpha order): Caran d'Ache Ecridor Chevron F and Leman Black/Silver F; Parker 51 Aerometric M and F; Parker 61 Insignia M, Parker Duofold Senior F; Platinum #3776 Century M; Sailor 1911 Black/Gold 21 Kt M; Sheaffer Crest Palladium M/F; Sheaffer Prelude Silver/Palladium Snakeskin Pattern F; Waterman Carene Deluxe Silver F

#15 isellpens

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 02:27

Great review and I am considering adding this one to our line-up at www.isellpens.com . :eureka:

Now in stock at isellpens.com in colors blue and stainless.

#16 bob_hayden

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 22:23

I got one of these for $6.59 postpaid on eBay from jewelry_12.  After a long wait for shipping from China, the pen seems very nice.  Mine is a dark blue.  There are many nice photos on eBay but on my monitor the pen looks almost black there.  My pen is a very dark blue with no trace of black.  (I checked iselpens and the color looks right there.)  My pen has a matte finish.  The nib on mine has some flex to it -- certainly more than a Lamy or Parker Vector --about like a Sheaffer Dollar Pen. It did not need any tweaking though I did wash and rinse out the ink path before I started.  Re the cracked jewel, there is supposed to be a stylized kangaroo on the jewel on the cap.  Hope that was not mistaken for a crack.  It looks like a jagged line if you don't look closely. The converter in mine did have a little mixing ball.  Let's hope they have changed to stanless steel for that.



#17 bobaroo

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 23:39

Yep these are solid workhorses for next to no money for sure.



#18 maximme

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Posted 15 November 2013 - 00:19

yes i LOVE the kaigelu 365.

i found if you tilt the pen higher angle ( than usual ) it will not skip, regardless

of how fast you write.
BUT if you tilt it down too much, it will skip.

i don't know why.



#19 johnnyb3

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Posted 02 January 2015 - 22:19

Hi, I got a Kaigelu 386, a cute li'l thing I don't read much about, from jewelry_12 a couple of months ago. It wrote great right from the start, and I used it daily for a while. Then the filler (seems to be the standard Kaigelu one with a ball bearing) seemed to develop a leak; at least, my fingers ended up very inky from it whenever I'd fill the thing. Now when I unscrewed it to fill it, the nib became detached and the filler mechanism is stuck in the body of the pen. Should I give up on this thing? I doubt the filler would survive my trying to pry it out. Maybe it's a candidate for an eyedropper conversion?



#20 TruthPil

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 12:18

I just got my Kaigelu 356 in the mail from Ebay and am sad to say that I got one of those that is going to require some adjusting. It won't write at all unless pressure is applied and it looks like the tines are too close together to let ink through. It's a shame too because the nib is smooth and the pen looks fantastic.

 

I've seen several references to spreading the tines for more ink flow on this pen, but how and what tools does one use to do that?

 

After trying many frustrating Heroes, a disappointing Duke 209, two Kaigelus, and several Jinhaos, only the Jinhaos have had decent nibs out of the box (the leaky sections they always develop over time is another story). I've sworn of Chinese pens several times because of all the problems I've had with them, but living in China makes them so irresistibly cheap and easy to acquire.


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