Dear Fountain Pen Network,
[I've highlighted the very relevant passages for those who can't afford the time to read through all!]
firstly, let me introduce myself and what I am exactly hoping to find here.
I am a student from Germany, currently waiting for my study pass to study electrical engineering. Therefore I am searching for general advice on extra-fine nib fountain pens, companies who sell those and of course, availability.
During my Abitur (probably high-school in US), I was using a simple Lamy Safari with a fine nib, which did not exactly fit my handwriting very well. It is still too big for my taste and I've sometimes heard complaints not about the style, but the tininess of my writing. As I was attempting to fix this issue, I stopped writing script-style and started with the usual "block"-style. Furthermore, I tried to use a different angle on the tip of the pen so that the width further decreased.
Western nib sizes could not offer me the width japanese companies have in their products, if you happen to know specialty nibs for a reasonable price which fit on fountain pens from western countries, please contact me! ; )
Ok so I've decided to do some research on fountain pens and came to the conclusion that the european market simply is not suited for those products (at least in Germany), neither Sailor nor Premium sell their products and even Pilot only has a very few products available.
I've found those products on the internet, those best describe what I am exactly searching for. Beside the Pilot VP, they offer the normal kind of fountain pen (classy design).
Pilot Custom Heritage 912, estimated price incl. shipping cost and tax: 180€ ($245)
Sailor Professional Gear Silver, estimated price incl. shipping cost and tax: 175€ ($238)
Pilot Vanishing Point Fermo, estimated price incl. shipping cost and tax: 170€ ($231)
Pilot Vanishing Point Decimo, estimated price incl. shipping cost and tax: 132€ ($180)
Platinum 3776 #1 Black, estimated price incl. shipping cost and tax: 170€ ($231)
all of those feature an extra-fine nib, which I am searching for. If you're curious about the prices: It's the cheapest I found them online. Bear in mind that those prices are calculated differently because tax is added up on top:
(Price of product itself + shipping cost) * 1,19 * 1,135
1,19 = 19% VAT; 1,135 = 13,5% customs duty
The customs duty is only added if the package (product + shipping cost) cost above 150€ ($202), otherwise "only" 19% is added.
All of the fountain pens recommended must therefore be at a maximum price of 150€ ($202), including shipping cost to Europe.
As one can see, it is very pricy for me to buy those fountain pens, so I am eager to find one that best suits my purpose which is everyday writing. Feel free to suggest pens which don't appear on this list, in terms of style I would rather like a decent pen in black, silver or dark blue with silver accents. I don't really like gold much, but if the price is right, I may take a look at those, too.
Another thing I would like to adress is that I don't know if the Vanishing Point suit me since I am not using the common tripod-grip, my thumb is a lot higher, touching the point-finger between the first and second joint. I am not sure whether I can change that without putting hours in it, I've tried it and unless I am writing very slow, the handwriting does not look good (still readable though). In the next week I can probably test if the clip is a problem for me or not and I am a bit worried about the placement of the nib, too.
Regarding the Pilot Custom Heritage 912: I would like to know if someone has experience with the PO-nib, especially in comparison to the EF nib.
Sorry for the wall of text guys, but at this price, I have to be very precise at what I am searching for. This is my first post here and I hope that I'm in the right forum section for this kind of threads.
If you've came down here, thank you for your time to read through the whole thing!
Edited by R201, 10 June 2014 - 23:37.