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Conway Stewart Celebration Le Wellington


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#1 dms525

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 22:58

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Conway Stewart released The Celebration LE Series in Churchill and Wellington models in late 2010. One hundred of each of the fountain pens was made. I had admired these pens, particularly the Wellington, for some time. This week, I was able to acquire a Celebration LE Wellington, and here are my impressions:

Appearance & Design (9.8/10)
The Celebration Wellington design departs from the standard issue Wellington in several respects. Most obvious are the engraved pattern and the red, white and blue rings inlaid on the cap. In addition, while the standard Wellington has two gold bands near the open end of the cap, the Celebration LE has no interruption of the engraved wave pattern. Last, the standard Wellington has a pointed dome end to the barrel, while the Celebration LE has a flat end on which the issue number – 43/100, on mine – is engraved.

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Personally, I do not find the bulbous shape of the Wellington cap particularly attractive. On the other hand, I do find the inlaid bands on the cap, contrasting with the black background, most appealing.

I am very fond of black pens with engraving. The wave pattern on the Celebration Wellington is very attractive. I found it difficult to photograph. Comparing the Wellington engraving to that on the Waterman Man 100 Opera and Arlequin, I noted an interesting difference: The Wellington waves are engraved with lines and lie on a shiny background while the Waterman approach was to engrave the background and leave the waves shiny. The resulting effect is that the Wellington is more reflective while the Watermans have a more matte overall appearance.

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Construction & Quality (10/10)
The Celebration Wellington appears well-made in all respects. Materials, fit and finish are flawless. Some have expressed the wish that Conway Stewart had chose ebonite rather than resin for the Celebration Series pens. I have no strong feelings in this regard.

Weight & Dimensions (10/10)
Although the Wellington appears to be a significantly larger pen because of the cap size, un-posted it is close to the same size as the CS Belliver, which I find one of my most comfortable pens to write with. Both these models are very well-balanced when used un-posted, which is my preference for pens of this size.

Celebration Wellington
Closed 140 mm
Posted 178 mm
Barrel incl nib 129 mm
Cap 65 mm
Barrel Diam 13.5 mm
Cap Diam 16 mm
Weight 38 gms

Belliver
Closed: 132.5 mm
Posted 165 mm
Barrel incl nib 126.5 mm
Cap 58 mm
Barrel Diam 13.2 mm
Cap Diam 15 mm
Weight 30 gms

For further comparison, here the Wellington is shown with the CS Belliver, Pelikan M800 and Waterman Man 100 pens. I find this size and weight pen very comfortable in writing, although a bit larger than I prefer for carrying in a shirt breast pocket.

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Nib & Performance (10/10)
The Celebration Wellington was made available with the full range of Conway Stewart round and italic nibs. Mine came with a Fine round nib. I purchased all my other modern Conway Stewart pens with italic nibs, all of which I have had customized with the exception of my LE Excalibur, which I ordered with a IB nib I found I liked right out of the box. The Celebration Wellington Fine nib is a very smooth, moderately wet writer with very consistent ink flow and is so nice I am going to keep it without modification, even though most of my writing is in italic script. I would note that this Fine nib writes a thicker line than a Waterman Fine or even a Pelikan Fine. It is much thicker than the vintage Conway Stewart pens I have with Fine nibs.

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I have found modern Conway Stewart nibs slightly to moderately springy. In general, I like their feel when writing. The Celebration Wellington's nib is slightly springy.

Filling System & Maintenance (10/10)
This pen has a Cartridge/Converter filling system. In general, I have preferred piston fillers, but I have found the CS Converters to be very reliable and easy to clean and operate. As delivered, there was some residual dried ink in the converter. This rinsed out easily with tap water. I then filled it with Pilot Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo ink. It filled completely on the first attempt and wrote well from when it was first put to paper.

Cost & Value (10/10)
The suggested retail price of this pen is quite expensive by my standards. I do recognize that its special design features add significant value. In any case, I was able to buy mine at a substantially reduced price. It had been inked at least once but shows no other signs of having been used. I feel I got an exceptional pen at an exceptional price.

Conclusion (Total Score: 9.7/10) :cloud9:
I loved the appearance of this pen from the photos I had seen, and its appearance in my hand was even more pleasing. The only surprise was how beautifully the Fine nib performs. This is clearly a special pen I am very happy to have in my collection. It is such a pleasure to write with, I expect to be using it much more regularly than I would have anticipated.

David

Edited by dms525, 25 October 2012 - 23:03.


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#2 Postscript

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 10:50

Well done. This was the pen that started my addiction. I got one as a gift from my wife--#32 for our 32nd anniversary,

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#3 dms525

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 16:39

Well done. This was the pen that started my addiction. I got one as a gift from my wife--#32 for our 32nd anniversary,

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Thanks for your comment, Post Script.

I missed our years of marriage by a year, on the low side with #43.

David

#4 Montblanc owner and lover

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 21:18

:puddle: that is a pen!
A people can be great withouth a great pen but a people who love great pens is surely a great people too... Pens owned actually: MB 146 EF;Pelikan M200 SE Clear Demonstrator 2012 B;Parker 17 EF;Parker 51 EF;Waterman Expert II M,Waterman Hemisphere M;Waterman Carene F and Stub;Pilot Justus 95 F. Nearly owned: MB 149 B(Circa 2002);Conway Stewart Belliver LE bracket Brown IB.

#5 breaker

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 12:12

nice review and pics!
thanks!
Cogito ergo sum

#6 dms525

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 17:06

Thanks, breaker!

David

#7 lewis

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 23:46

Love it, thanks!
Fountain pens aren't a collection, it's an insatiable obsession!

Shotokan Karate: Respect, Etiquette, Discipline, Perseverance

#8 dms525

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Posted 29 October 2012 - 04:28

Thank you for the comment, lewis.

David

#9 Boston Brian

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 00:37

What a terrific review and great clear photographs. I love CS pens, I have a Churchill which I use constantly and the Michael Jecks which I am not just so happy with, but am planning to get another Churchill or a Belliver when I can seel the Michael Jecks pen.

#10 da vinci

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 07:52

Nice review, thanks :thumbup:

#11 dms525

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 17:43

What a terrific review and great clear photographs. I love CS pens, I have a Churchill which I use constantly and the Michael Jecks which I am not just so happy with, but am planning to get another Churchill or a Belliver when I can seel the Michael Jecks pen.


Thanks, Brian!

I don't have a Churchill. I have felt it to be too big to carry and use. The Belliver is just about perfect for me, and the writing experience with the Wellington is equivalent. I'm not familiar with the Michael Jecks pen.

David

#12 dms525

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 17:44

Nice review, thanks :thumbup:


Thank you, da vinci!

David

#13 Boston Brian

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 15:09

David,
The Michael Jecks pen is the first one so far in The Detection Series. The pen would be close to the size of the Churchill but very much heavier in weight. I love the Churchill pen, and for its size it is pretty lightweight, unlike its namesake!
My interest in the Belliver is that Mary at Conway Stewart told me that it carries a Churchill nib, which I love because of it slightly square, almost stub tip, especially as I always use a broad nib.
Brian

#14 dms525

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 18:00

David,
The Michael Jecks pen is the first one so far in The Detection Series. The pen would be close to the size of the Churchill but very much heavier in weight. I love the Churchill pen, and for its size it is pretty lightweight, unlike its namesake!
My interest in the Belliver is that Mary at Conway Stewart told me that it carries a Churchill nib, which I love because of it slightly square, almost stub tip, especially as I always use a broad nib.
Brian


Hi, Brian

The Belliver nibs are very nice. All of mine are italics that I had customized by Michael Masuyama to make them crisper. I have no experience with CS round broad nibs. However, I got my Wellington Excalibur with an IB nib, and you might like it. It is stubbish enough to write standard cursive with good line variation. The line variation is good enough for italic script that I have not felt it needed further tweaking. I could provide a writing sample, if that would help you.

I believe Ghost Plane has a vast collection of CS broad/IB nibs and might provide you much more helpful info.

David






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