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What To Expect From Pelikan M800 Pen Performance

pelikan gold nib

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18 replies to this topic

#1 Artslut

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 04:20

Hi, i posted aversion of this question in the "my first pelikan" section. i have a new m800 tortoise with a broad nib. i find that i need to exert a bit more pressure on the pen than i do with some of my others. The nib feels quite springy, much more than i am used to with my krone, graf von f c, visconti and sheaffer pens ( gold nibs) is this typical or could there be something up with the pen? I have tried using mont blanc seaweed green ink (very poor results) sailor ink and just tried some visconti. The latter two inks seem to be performing similarly. Any feedback you might be able to offer would be appreciated. It doesnt seem as smooth as the graf and not as wet as the stiff sheaffer nib. i was wondering if you might share your thoughts about its handling characteristics. Thanks

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#2 OTDoc

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 04:37

 The M800 is very wet and flows nicely in my experience. Your experience does not sound normal to me; especially for a broad nib! I would send it off to chartpak for a free replacement nib if it continues not to satisfy. The Pelikan nibs tend to be a bit more dry and narrower than a Montblanc but not by much.


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#3 Indy_Pen_Dance

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 04:52

Hello and congratulations making such a beautiful selection for your first Pelikan.  The M800 Tortoise should not need any pressure put on it to write and in fact should write of its own weight.  So, for example, if you placed the pen in the crook of your thumb and pointing finger & then the nib against the paper at the normal 45 degree angle and just move your hand backwards, your pen should draw you a nice line.  If it isn't then you have a flow issue.  If you have a loupe, look at the nib under good lighting and see if the very tip is pressed together (it shouldn't be).  As Richard Binder taught us, and many high school physics teachers tried as well, you can't have two things in the same physical space - therefore ink can't pass where the tines are pressed together.  (This is different for a full flex nib whose tips should come together.)  Also, you could have a slit that is incorrectly shaped.  It should not be shaped like " || " all the way from the breather hole to the end of the tines.  Ink flows to the smallest point and stops, with a slit that is equal all the way from start to finish - the ink gets confused and doesn't know where to go.  

 

 

These are just a couple of the issues that could be causing no ink flow (however since you are getting some ink flow with pressure it isn't as likely to be the second one).  

 

Another problem with putting pressure on the nib is that you can spring it and then it won't work at all, so please do be cautious about that.  

 

In all honesty, most of the new Pelikans that I have been getting in for service have not had problems with being too dry or too thin a line - but quite the opposite because of the amazingly large iridium tips that are showing up on the newer pens.  Most of the ones I have been getting in have been coming in to be customized to smaller sizes, custom shapes (stubs, cursive italics etc) or to be "Lindarized" (a term coined by our clients that refers to the alignment, tuning, smoothing and setting of flow that we do to make the nibs write like a dream.)

 

If you purchased this pen brand new, then you can send the nib back under warranty.  If you didn't then someone like myself, or another of the nib persons here can fix the problem for you.

 

I hope this helps because that is one spectacular Pelikan!

 

Linda



#4 The Good Captain

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 09:12

I've the F nibbed version of this great pen and just use the 'soon-to-be-released' Diamine Salamander exclusively in mine. The two just seem to go together so well.

They are great pens - enjoy.


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"Meddler's 'Salamander' - almost as good as the real thing!"


#5 whichwatch

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 12:08

I agree with what Linda wrote.

 

My Tortoise M800 (medium nib) writes without any pressure at all - from its own weight.  When held in my normal writing position, with the pressure I normally use, it is plenty wet and a bit broader than most of my other medium nibs.



#6 Rick Propas

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 13:23

Just to add, properly adjusted, these nibs should write super smoothly and with generous flow. If you bought the pen from a recognized dealer than getting the dealer or Chartpak to adjust or replace should be a snap. If you bought it someplace awful (the 'Bay) then you will need to have someone properly set the nib.



#7 Artslut

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 05:51

Thanks for your kind and thoughtful responses. I bought the pen over the phone from the fountain pen hospital. I spoke to a very helpful person at chartpak and have sent it off to her for a new nib. I trust the replacement may be to the high standards you reflected above. Now to wait. I will follow up when it is returned.

#8 msnovtue

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 11:06

I don't have the exact pen you do, but I do have multiple other variants of the M800. It does sound like there's a nib problem, but here's some other things I've noticed with my M800s and other Pels as well.

--Ink can make a massive difference. When in doubt, I try either a Pelikan Edelstein or Rohrer & Klingerer ink. The R & K can feather a bit easily, but all my Pels (M800s, M600s, various LEs & Toledos) like these inks a lot.

--Pelikan nibs do seem to go through a "break-in" period. They do definitely improve with use. Of my top 5 writers among my Pels, 2 of them are ones I bought used.

Good luck!
1988 Mercedes-Benz 260E

"Nothing will make a driver more faithful to a car than a car that is faithful to its driver."

#9 Artslut

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 22:52

Thanks mint. I tried mb seaweed green, sailor blue and a brown visconti ink before returning it. It was dodgy with all three inks. I wrote with it quite a while before returning it to, but in the end, i think it was the right thing to do. Thanks for the thoughts.

#10 Jezza

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 14:58

This sounds like a "baby bottom" nib, where the bottom of the nib is slightly rounded along either edge of the slit.  Consequently, it takes a little bit of pressure to force the ink to make contact with the paper.  I hope the next nib is a little better for you, but it seems to be a common issue.



#11 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 09:57

a pre 1997 model of m800 is the best one you can get


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

#12 DrSterling

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 16:02

a pre 1997 model of m800 is the best one you can get

Hi George,

 

Sorry to hijack this thread, but I've heard that pre '97 Pelikans are superior from other people as well. Whatis the reason for this? I'm quite curious.

Thanks!



#13 Artslut

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 08:19

Received my new nib from chartpak. Kind and gracious service! The new nib is much better, though still not as wet as i had expected. Anyway perfectly serviceable. Maybe not the wow i was hoping for, but i hear these pens may get wetter as they "break in". I am Looking forward to trying some different inks and see how that goes. I wish i could buy inks locally but choices are limited in this small city. Ah well, a few minutes in a pen shop when next in a big city will set that to rights. Thanks all for the comments.

#14 Artslut

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 08:21

Thanks @jezza for the possible diagnosis. The new one really is better.

#15 mori45

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 09:06

Hi George,

 

Sorry to hijack this thread, but I've heard that pre '97 Pelikans are superior from other people as well. Whatis the reason for this? I'm quite curious.

Thanks!

 

The older nibs, both 14K and 18K, had much more defined, stubbish nibs as opposed to the big round nibs of today. As such, they are just as smooth, but produce better line variation and aren't as stiff as modern nibs.



#16 Cliff O

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 16:43

In my experience (15-20 different M800s over the years), the M800 rarely writes well out of the box.  But after you get it dialed in, they are one of the best writers on the market.  Wet, springy and superb consistency.  You wont regret your purchase.  I use my M800 Brown Tortoise as my daily writer.



#17 DrSterling

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 22:16

 

The older nibs, both 14K and 18K, had much more defined, stubbish nibs as opposed to the big round nibs of today. As such, they are just as smooth, but produce better line variation and aren't as stiff as modern nibs.

Thank you so much for answering. I'm glad that I know now! I haven't really gotten into vintage pens, but I am interested.



#18 Pjay

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Posted 12 November 2013 - 13:43

My second tortoiseshell brown M800 came with an OB nib, which refused to start reliably with a variety of inks.  It was OK on vertical strokes, but left to right and horizontal and diagonal strokes skipped 2/3 of the time.  While the nib is being replaced (mail to and then back from UK is slow...) I'm using a much earlier 14k EF nib, which is likely to stay on the pen long term. So sweet...

The original nib on my M800 IB had to be replaced for the same reason, so current quality control standards are less than reassuring.



#19 Paul80

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Posted 12 November 2013 - 16:48

Hi

My new (to me) M800 is also doing this, it's got a 2BB Nib and also need a little bit of pressure to get it going.

I have checked it with a x40 loupe and does not look like a BB issue but the tines do look too close together at the tip.

I will get the brass shims out when I get home tomorrow. Mine is a 2006 model.

Paul





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