1. Appearance and finish 3.5/5. The century I is not a very impressive-looking pen. It is slender, with a simple but distinctive clip and a chrome finish and small parallell grooves along the body. The nib is plain looking.
2. Construction and size 4/5. The cap and barrel are made from thin metal, the section has metal threads- which I like. The pen is sturdy enough, even if it is a slim pen- 13 cm closed, 0.8 cm in diameter. The barrel has the tendency to unscrew by itself, the clip is a bit flexy, so very useable. Having more than 12 cm in length, this pen can be used unposted, but it posts very well and the balance is just right, so I use it this way.
I have medium sized hands and I have no problem using this slender pen, it feels right in my hand.
3. Nib and writing 4.5/5. The lady who sold me this pen on ebay described the pen as having a 18k nib, but it is actually just a plain steel nib with goldplate. Fortunately for me, the cross century classic writes better than it looks.
Mine has a fine nib that actually writes like a fine- 0.5 cm. There are no variations in the line width and the ink flow is good, puts down a nice, consistent line. There is very little drag,and due to the nib size it does give some feedback, but it doesn`t feel toothy and I enjoyed using it from the beginning. The nib is definitely the high point of the pen.
4. Filling system and price 4/5. The pen uses personalised cross cartridges(which i`m not very fond of, they are small and have something like a pyramidal shape) and also comes with a twist converter. I paid 40 usd shipping included for the pen.
At first I was disappointed to see that the nib is not gold, as described, but rather steel. Still, I got a full package, including the original 1990 receipt and the pen really writes well, so the price was actually decent for a lightly-used pen.
5. Final considerations. This classic century is my first pen from cross, and I have to say that i`m pleased with this purchase. It`s a pen that rests good in the hand and is a good writer. I even like the big gray box with faux leather and chrome trim it comes in.
Edited by rochester21, 06 January 2013 - 17:19.