I came across Franklin Christoph when there was a review here about another FC beauty, Model 02 Intrinsic.
After checking up Franklin Christoph website for a while, I have settled for the 1901 model as I prefer big pens. I placed an order for the model 1901 Black with creme bands and a pen tray but the pen was out of stock. I was promptly informed by the sale department there would be a delay of 7 days before the pen was available again in all three colours. It was then I decided to go for the one with cherry ice bands.
I ordered the 18K Masuyama medium italic nib to go with the pen. The pen arrived to my work place three days later by Fed Ex after I received the dispatch notice from FC.
I opened the package and the pen box…
OMG…. Am I impressed by its look and quality…
The barrel is made of acrylic and not celluloid. It is smooth with a gloss shine. The two bands are not as bright as illustrated on FC website. Yes, the pen may look bland without the bands.
The pen comes with a clip with four small diamonds imprinted on it. The clip is stiff.
The top of the cap is flat and has the FP logo embossed on it.
There is also the name Franklin Christoph imprinted on the cap.
It takes three quarter turn to unscrew the cap.
This pen may not attract a lot of attention like a colourful celluloid pen but that is never my concern.
Weight and dimension (10/10)
I like to write without posting the cap. This is a pen that is not designed to be posted while writing. The barrel tapers towards the end. I have large hands (size 8 gloves) and this pen sits comfortably in my hand. It is a light pen and weighing in at 28.3g. You can get the pen dimensions here:
The pen section is tapered towards the nib and makes it easy to hold and write for long hours.
The filling system (10/10):
The piston lovers may not agree with me…
The filling system is a cartridge converter. I have been a piston filler ‘fanboy’ for years until I have tried to clean my piston fillers recently and after watching a few youtube clips about replacing parts for piston filler.
In general, it is easier to clean a pen with cartridge converter. With a piston filler, I have to remove the nib and feed before flushing the ink chamber with water. That is not possible with all my piston fillers such as Montblanc or Montegrappa 1930. If the cartridge converter malfunctions, I can easily replace it with another.
The 1901 model has a good ink capacity and has a volume similar to a Pilot con 70. (As seen with a pilot Justus 95 in the photo below).
The nib (10/10)
…talking about the joy of writing. The nib is a Jowo with FC logo on it.
This nib produces a crisp italic. It is not a cursive italic. It has a smooth, medium flow. The italic nib is position sensitive and can catch the paper if I am holding the pen at an angle. This is typical of italic nib and makes it harder to use comparing to a stub or round nib. There is a bit of flex with this gold nib. This pen with the gold nib costs US100 more than the version with the steel nib. The nib unit can be easily replaced with another one. It also means cleaning of this pen is extremely easy.
The medium italic writes a line width of 0.8mm down stroke…
You may have seen my overview of stock 1.1 italic but this nib is in a different class of its own.
I have many pens with round nibs. This pen has instantly become my favourite daily writing pen.
Cost and value (10/10)
I paid US$300 including postage for this pen. This is perhaps the cheapest flagship model among many other flagship models in my collection. This pen however, comes with a customized nib as an option. That is just ‘icing on the cake’. I have to admit, it writes and feels better than a lot of other pens which cost twice as much as this pen.
The pen fits my hand perfectly and I do prefer the line width from this pen over my other pens with 1.1 italic.
This is my first FC pen and won’t be the last. As I write this review, this model with cherry ice bands is out of stock.
My suggestion for those who are strictly devoted to piston fillers, your option is to get a piston filler with broad nib (like a Sailor Realo) before sending it to Mike for customization.
I am very happy with this pen.
Do I recommend it?
Thank you for reading…
Edited by thw, 05 August 2014 - 09:13.