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Twsbi Mini 1.5


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31 replies to this topic

#1 dcpritch

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 22:02

I opened a parcel from Goulet Pens that came today bearing a new TWSBI Mini with a steel 1.5 mm stub nib. Here are some pics:

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As can be seen above, the line drawn by the TWSBI 1.5 nib is very slightly wider than that drawn by a 1.3mm nib. The Parker Vac was retipped by Greg Minuskin and has a tip measured at exactly 1.3mm in width. Here are some close-ups of the two nibs:

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I love stub nibs so the 1.5 was an obvious choice for me. Having had a couple of TWSBIs with 1.1 nibs, my opinion is they write a line that is more like a 1.0 or 0.9, and in the same manner the 1.5 is very near the writing of a 1.3 mm nib, as shown above and below.

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I am really impressed by the fit and finish on the TWSBI Mini. I've owned several TWSBIs in the past but currently have only the new Mini and a Micarta. The Micarta is made of a material that is rough and tumble and seems like it could survive just about anything. The Mini is more elegant, with its black cap and turning knob and its silver colored furniture. Having had it for only a few hours I can't say how durable the material is; perhaps a follow-up in a few months would be in order.

The following pictures were all taken before I inked the Mini:


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The big 1.5 nib is a funny, duck bill looking thing that writes very smoothly, though not nearly as sweet as the Minuskin stub nib on the vintage Parker Vac shown above. But then the Vac nib is 14k gold and the Minuskin retip job cost more than the entire TWSBI Mini, so I would be shocked if the Mini's nib were equivalent.

Still, I like the size and style of the Mini and think it will be a regular in my rotation of pocket pens, joining a Kaweco Sport, Stipula FPN Passaporto, a vintage Sheaffer Tuckaway with a .9mm Minuskin stub nib, and a few vintage ringtops.


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I love the clear barrel with the diamond facets formed into the acrylic, a superb design characteristic and very well done.

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In sum, I think this little pen would be excellent in anyone's stable, or as a stand alone pen if that's the only one you have. For the price, I doubt anyone could find a reliable, small piston filler that holds as much ink and is as nicely made.

Two enthusiastic thumbs up from dcpritch. :thumbup: :thumbup:

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

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#2 jacksterp

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 23:10

I suspect this review is going to sell a number of minis. Nicely done and great choice of ink.

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#3 Draless

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 23:55

It looks to me like the tip of the nib is dis proportionate to the entire nib, the tip looks elongated.

Nice review though, I enjoy your handwriting and pictures DCpritch

#4 heymatthew

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 00:54

It looks to me like the tip of the nib is dis proportionate to the entire nib, the tip looks elongated.

Nice review though, I enjoy your handwriting and pictures DCpritch


I was going to say the same thing about the nib. Looks a little funny, but seems to handle well. I'm not a fan of stubs myself, but this one looks like it puts down a nice line. Is it normal for the TWSBI line to have that elongated nib? The only TWSBI I have has a fine (or extra-fine, I can't remember) and doesn't look as disproportionate. Maybe it looks that way because of the size of the pen?

Either way, a great-looking pen that I'd be happy to tote around in my pocket any day.

Thank you for the review. I've been eyeing these myself.
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#5 dcpritch

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:35

I suspect this review is going to sell a number of minis. Nicely done and great choice of ink.


Thanks jack, I don't think my photos show very well the sheen of Sailor Grenade, but it comes across in a very gold color, much like J. Herbin 1670 Anniv. Red.

I suspect TWSBI will sell quite a number of this Mini model, they are just well made and really good writers.

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

Instagram: dcpritch


#6 dcpritch

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:57

It looks to me like the tip of the nib is disproportionate to the entire nib, the tip looks elongated.

Nice review though, I enjoy your handwriting and pictures DCpritch


It is a goofy looking nib, if you focus on such things, but nibs are sort of like people, they come in all shapes and sizes, and just like with people you can't always judge how its going to perform based on what it looks like. Here are a few different sizes and shapes in a crummy photo I just took:

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L-R:

Pelikan M1000 BB stub by John Sorowka
Delta Fusion stub nib
Stipula Passaporto steel 1.1 nib (with lots of ink on it - oops, I didn't wipe the nib before the photo)
TWSBI Mini 1.5 nib
TWSBI Micarta B stub by Pendleton Brown
Sheaffer Tuckaway Lifetime, 0.9 mm stub by Greg Minuskin

PS, Thanks for the nice remark. If you really want to see some great pen photography check out this thread by FPN's Christof - fabulous!


I was going to say the same thing about the nib. Looks a little funny, but seems to handle well. I'm not a fan of stubs myself, but this one looks like it puts down a nice line. Is it normal for the TWSBI line to have that elongated nib? The only TWSBI I have has a fine (or extra-fine, I can't remember) and doesn't look as disproportionate. Maybe it looks that way because of the size of the pen?


WHAT?!? You're not a fan of stub nibs?!? Heresy! :P

You're right, the nib looks a little funny, mostly I think because of the width of the tip in relation to the rest of the nib. The tip of the 1.5 nib is really not any larger than the tips of the Pelikan and Delta stubs shown in the photo, only a little bigger than the Stipula 1.1 nib, and quite a bit larger than the TWSBI B stub and the Sheaffer 0.9 stub to its right. However, despite its looks, the TWSBI Mini 1.5 writes extremely smoothly and lays down a consistent line, with excellent line variation; proving once again that steel nibs can compete with gold nibs

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

Instagram: dcpritch


#7 ethernautrix

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:58

I don't recall why I ordered a Mini. I wasn't looking for another pen, but I will say that this pen has all the features I like in a well-made, very affordable, imminently-portable fountain pen.

TWSBI was out of EF and F when I ordered it, so I ordered an M -- Classic. I liked it well enough, but meh. I cleaned it and put it away. I'd heard rumors of the stub nib, figured maybe I'd buy one and try it out.

Time went by. (Not A LOT of time.) Brought the Mini out again. You know what? It's a damn fine pen! I like the transparent barrel and the opaque cap and the easily-swappable nibs and postable cap (how it screws onto the end) and how I don't worry about not carrying it in a leather case.


I bought two more nibs - EF and 1.1mm stub. I like them both, especially the EF.


Bought ANOTHER Mini Classic. This time in F. So now... two Minis in rotation, EF and F, and four Nakayas. :-D


These Minis are great little pens. Probably no one is more surprised than I am.

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#8 heymatthew

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 02:12

It is a goofy looking nib, if you focus on such things, but nibs are sort of like people, they come in all shapes and sizes, and just like with people you can't always judge how its going to perform based on what it looks like.


Now you're getting all philosophical on us. :D



WHAT?!? You're not a fan of stub nibs?!? Heresy! :P


I know! I'm sorry. Please refrain from flogging me, if it's at all possible. I do like flex pens. Does that count? I actually have a pen with a stub nib, but it's not friendly with my handwriting so I'm thinking of parting ways with it. You might have just convinced me (read: scared me badly enough) to keep it. See what you've gone and done? Now what will I do with it?

Excellent review regardless. I love that Mini. Might have to pick one up. I may even get one with something other than an EF. :)

Edited by heymatthew, 15 January 2013 - 02:13.

No, that's not blood. That's Noodler's Antietam.

#9 dcpritch

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 02:35

Now you're getting all philosophical on us.


But see, fountain pens are all about philosphy. Here you have a seeming incongruity, Nakayas peacefully coexisting with the TWSBI Mini. Something no one would have though possible until ethernautrix conceived the idea. What's next,, Montblancs and Wearevers?

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So now... two Minis in rotation, EF and F, and four Nakayas. :-D

These Minis are great little pens.


With only one Mini and two Nakayas in rotation, I am only half of you. :huh:

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

Instagram: dcpritch


#10 dcpritch

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 02:45

... the tip of the nib is disproportionate to the entire nib, the tip looks elongated.


I was going to say the same thing about the nib. Looks a little funny ...


I figured it out! Take a look at these two images and tell me if you see any similarities:

Posted ImagePosted Image

[image of duck-billed platypus stolen fair and square from Google Images and reproduced here for literary, comedic and educational purposes only]

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

Instagram: dcpritch


#11 TSherbs

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 02:54

ha ha :ltcapd:

#12 AlejoPlay

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 15:57

I love my Mini 1.1. No joke.

I cannot believe how perfect it is.

And I love the Mini/Nakaya love here. Because on my list of pens for 2013 were: A Mini and a Nakaya. 1 down! LOL!

#13 bhbarto

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 18:08

Took the plunge and purchased a 1.5 mini based on your excellent review. I had a TWSBI 530 that did not get a great deal of use because I could never quite get used to the way the cap posted on the pen.

However, I find the mini is nearly perfect in that regards with the screw on cap, and the 1.5 nib is among the smoothest I own including a couple of 18K nibs. The flow is perfect with Montblanc Violet ink.

I will need more time to fully evaluate this pen, but is looks like a real winner and daily user at first glance!

Pen(s) Currently in Rotation:

Pilot Vanishing Point Decimo (Fine) - J. Herbin Lie de Thé

Lamy Al-Star (Fine) - Waterman South Sea Blue

Sheaffer Snorkel Desk Pen (Medium) - Lamy Blue


#14 JJ51

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 18:09

Great review! TWSBI is my most favorite pen brand!
JJ51

#15 dcpritch

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 19:20

... I find the mini is nearly perfect in that regards with the screw on cap, and the 1.5 nib is among the smoothest I own including a couple of 18K nibs. The flow is perfect with Montblanc Violet ink. ... it looks like a real winner and daily user at first glance!


Glad you enjoyed the review; I'm always happy to contribute to the delinquency of another pen addict. :thumbup:

I agree, the flow is perfect and the nib is very smooth and easy to use, more forgiving as a stub than, say, the Lamy 1.1 nib or most similar steel stubs. I still have Sailor Jentle Grenade in mine and really enjoy writing with it. Start up is consistently good, too. Though I never post caps except on small pens (like this one), posting is easy and feels very natural with this pen, and makes it quite balanced in use.


Great review! TWSBI is my most favorite pen brand!


Hi JJ51, thanks for the compliment and welcome to FPN and our ongoing fountain pen discussion. What TWSBIs do you have?

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

Instagram: dcpritch


#16 dcpritch

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 19:29

... on my list of pens for 2013 were: A Mini and a Nakaya. 1 down! LOL!


So, one down, one to go. Don't leave us hanging ... when's the Nakaya coming???!!!

How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.

— Samuel Johnson

 

Instagram: dcpritch


#17 Sblakers

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 20:32

Lovely review ! David, your penmanship makes me so jealous I don't know what to do with myself.

#18 da vinci

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 20:37

Great review, thanks. Now find myself rather tempted :hmm1:

#19 tcranenj

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 02:14

Me: Lefty over-writer with smallish hands.

Pen: TWSBI Mini Classic fine nib

Ink: Noodler's Blue

Results: Fantastic! We lefty over writers can be torture on fountain pens, but the TWSBI Mini has been more than up to the challenge. Consistently write smooth with no skipping that I can recall. What I really love about the mini is that it has nearly perfect balance for my smallish hands when posted. Most pens feel a bit top heavy for me, but the posted mini is one of the best balanced pens I've used in a long, long time.

The review that started this thread is making the purchase of a mini 1.1 very, very tempting. Don't think I can do the 1.5 due to the amount of ink it would release and my lefty over writing, but the 1.1 just might fill an unfortunate hole in the collection.

#20 flyshot

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 04:31

I love my Twsbi mini..now I need to get a 1.5 nib. I love the ink
that was used in the review. :thumbup:
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