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Pelikan M200 Gripes

pelikan m200 gripes cons disadavantages warning review

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12 replies to this topic

#1 a.zy.lee

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Posted 24 August 2014 - 19:42

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Just over a month ago, I got a Pelikan M200 with a broad nib. I like the pen as a whole, but I have quite a few gripes. I don't mean to rant, I'm just stating some of the things that have been bugging me. Sorry M200 fans.
 
1. It's way too light. I didn't think this would bug me, as I don't judge pens by their weight. However, the M200 doesn't feel comfortable in the hand. The grip and balance are fine, but the weight makes the pen feel cheap and unpleasant. That's my experience, anyway.
2. Hard starts. This may just be in my case. My broad nib may have baby's bottom. Very disappointing and greatly worsens the writing experience.
3. The joint in the grip section. The joint between the two halves of plastic is not seamless. Very minor issue, but it's there.
4. The front of the feed is wider that the nib. Just a little bit.
5. The broad nib is impractical. Completely unusable for maths and cheap paper. I'm saving for a spare medium nib unit.
 
Just so that this isn't a rant, here are some things I like about my M200:
1. Classy and timeless gold & black design.
2. Comfortable grip.
3. Piston filling system.
4. Removable nib & feed unit.
5. Screw cap.
6. The feed is aesthetically appealing.
7. Wet flow.
8. The broad nib is great for recreational use.
9. Long nib.
10. Springy/Flexy/Soft nib.
11. Aesthetically balanced.
12. It's (almost) everything a fountain pen should be!
 
Can you relate to any of my gripes?

Edited by a.zy.lee, 24 August 2014 - 22:05.


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#2 dave-

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Posted 24 August 2014 - 21:54

Your gripes sound right. I bought 2 brand new Pelikans and a spare nib which was brand new and they are 3 different sizes and they ALL have the hard start thing.

I also bought a vintage Pelikan and that writes bad too in a different way. I so wanted to love pelikan pens because I like how the look and love the piston but the way they write is not good enough for me and I`m not paying a specialist to tune them, why should I. I wont buy any more of this brand untill they change the nibs. 



#3 Andyroo

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Posted 24 August 2014 - 22:26

The stock M2XX nibs seem to be very poor.

 

I have an M215 with an M nib that writes ok but makes an annoying clicking noise because the tines are too tightly together, an M205 Duo BB with a slightly hard start that's solved with a wet ink and an M200 B that was just a lemon.

 

The M215 nib has been replaced with a 14k M400 F nib which writes perfectly, the noisey nib from that has gone into the M205 and I tolerate the odd click here and there, finally the M200 B has been replaced by an OB I bought on Ebay and the jury is still out on that one.

 

My M150 M from the 1980's I bought on Ebay writes perfectly.

 

I've obtained all my M2XX pens relatively cheaply so the problems haven't bothered me too much and they all write pretty well now.

 

Considering the prices being asked for the new Cognac demo model now, I think the Pilot Custom Heritage 92 is much better value (I've got one of those too).

 

After all that I still want to buy an M800...crazy ain't I!



#4 Waski_the_Squirrel

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 00:14

I own an m200 demonstrator. I agree that it is a very light pen. This actually doesn't bother me. Once I start writing, I don't notice. Of course, if it did bother me, I wouldn't like this pen!

 

I've never had trouble with hard starts. I rank this pen up there with my Noodler's pens. It starts easily and has a decent amount of flex.


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#5 carlos.q

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 00:56

You say the M200 is too light like that was a bad thing! ;)

After I learned to write with a proper tripod grip I have been using my M200/205 pens uncapped, as the cap makes the pen too heavy for me.

As for hard starting, I guess you know the routine: flushing with water and a bit of dish soap. If that doesn't work, I suggest you try different inks. My M200 does not like Noodler's black at all but thrives on Montblanc Midnight blue and Pelikan 4001 blue black.

And if you find that the B nib is too wide for math or cheap paper maybe you should not try a Medium but go for an F or EF nib. If you buy one from Richard Binder you can't go wrong.

#6 Baric

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 08:35

Just over a month ago, I got a Pelikan M200 with a broad nib. I like the pen as a whole, but I have quite a few gripes. I don't mean to rant, I'm just stating some of the things that have been bugging me. Sorry M200 fans.
 
1. It's way too light. I didn't think this would bug me, as I don't judge pens by their weight. However, the M200 doesn't feel comfortable in the hand. The grip and balance are fine, but the weight makes the pen feel cheap and unpleasant. That's my experience, anyway.
2. Hard starts. This may just be in my case. My broad nib may have baby's bottom. Very disappointing and greatly worsens the writing experience.
3. The joint in the grip section. The joint between the two halves of plastic is not seamless. Very minor issue, but it's there.
4. The front of the feed is wider that the nib. Just a little bit.
5. The broad nib is impractical. Completely unusable for maths and cheap paper. I'm saving for a spare medium nib unit.
 
Can you relate to any of my gripes?

 

Some thoughts that come to mind:

 

1.  Yes, it's light.  Some folks love that and dislike heavier pens.  If you want a heavier pen, you might consider stepping up to the M600 which has brass internals.

2. That's a shame.  I'd definitely trying a thorough flushing first  but if that doesn't work, consider some nib work or get it replaced. One of the reasons I get my Pelikans from nibs.com is they will adjust the nib if needed and give you the flow rate you desire.  Never had a bad nib from them.  If you are considering buying a replacement nib, I would recommend nibs.com or maybe richardspens.com (Richard Binder's store).  I also hear that Chartpak, the US distributor for Pelikan, has a free nib exchange program, that might be an option.

3. Never heard of a seam in the section, my M600's and M800 have no seam that I can discern either visually or with my fingers.

4. Sounds like the feed is not properly seated in the nib collar or the nib itself is in too far.  If you look at the front of the nib, you should not be able to see the feed behind it (except through the breather hole).  Another reason to get this nib replaced or swapped.

5. Broads are nice, but you have to fit the nib size to your needs.  Again, it sounds like you should swap the nib for something finer.

 

All in all, swapping the nib should take care of 3 of your issues, but the weight and section seam are another issue.  You could return the pen for a replacement with a finer nib, but that doesn't resolve the weight issue.   Or return it for a refund and put that towards an M600 or better yet an M800 which is slightly bigger and heavier than the M600.  Size wise, the M200 is just bit shorter and a bit smaller around the section than the M600, as well as being lighter.  Other dimensions are pretty similar.  You can get nice size comparisons of a lot of pens at:

 

http://www.nibs.com/pen_measures/

 

I find the M800 to be pretty near perfect for me, the extra weight and wider grip section make it a very comfortable in the hand.  The only real drawback it's a bit long for my shirt pockets which is reserved for my M600 or maybe a CS Belliver.


Edited by Baric, 25 August 2014 - 08:37.


#7 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 20:51

215 has a brass barrel. The 800 has brass internals, not the 600.

Try posting the 200 pen, it is well balanced then.....not that I have any 200's just 4 various 400's.

 

Grew up with light pens...not the heavy modern clunkers.

I find a 600 nice in girth and weight. Would have to get use to the size & weight of a 800, and would only buy a '87-89 with the good nib.

Don't like nails...like a 800, not too enthused by the semi-nail on my 600....so it have my 400n's semi-flex B on it, which is narrower in vintage than in modern.

 

do like the nice springy regular flex of the 200....might buy a 215 some day....got no interest in modern....nibs too stiff, or the one that is not is a giant pen the 1000.

IMO the 200's nib is better than the modern 400/600 which are semi-nail.


Edited by Bo Bo Olson, 25 August 2014 - 20:58.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#8 Baric

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 10:49

Thanks for correction.  I thought the M600 had brass internals as well.  But Pelikan confirms it, brass on the M800 and M1000 only.

 

I definitely prefer the M800 size and weight to the M600.  Not that there's anything wrong with the M600, but given a choice between the two, I'll go M800 every time.

 

I don't find much of difference between the M600 and M800 nibs, both are pretty much stiff.  Which is good for me, I find I have trouble with soft nibs being a lefty side/overwriter, they get real scratchy and don't behave well at all in my hand.



#9 lurker

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 19:22

I was fortunate enough to visit the D.C. Pen show a few weeks ago. At the show, I played around with a lot of different Pelikan pens. I guess your gripes are all in the eye of the beholder. I played with the m200 and m400, I liked both a lot. The m600 and above were too big and heavy for me. I have tiny hands, so the light weight m200 and the small size was perfect for me. I think an ideal Pelikan would be the m400, but that is out of my price range at the moment.

 

Regarding nibs, I picked up a m200 with a fine nib. It writes wonderfully. No false starts or anything.



#10 benincanada

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 21:32

5. The broad nib is impractical. Completely unusable for maths and cheap paper. I'm saving for a spare medium nib unit.

Not the pens fault - plus Pelikan offers a 30 day nib exchange.

 

The stock M2XX nibs seem to be very poor.

...

Considering the prices being asked for the new Cognac demo model now, I think the Pilot Custom Heritage 92 is much better value (I've got one of those too).

 

I have two stock M2XX fine nibs that are great out of the box (one in a M200 Cognac). That said, the custom ground Medium cursive italic is really great.



#11 ac12

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 23:30

1. It's way too light. I didn't think this would bug me, as I don't judge pens by their weight. However, the M200 doesn't feel comfortable in the hand. The grip and balance are fine, but the weight makes the pen feel cheap and unpleasant. That's my experience, anyway.

> The weight is just fine for me.  I like the lighter pens, my best long session writers are down at 15 grams.  Heavy pens make my hand tired during long writing sessions.  I do not like heavy pens.

2. Hard starts. This may just be in my case. My broad nib may have baby's bottom. Very disappointing and greatly worsens the writing experience.

> Could be a misshapen tip, or the nib needs adjustment, or you need to switch to a wetter ink.

3. The joint in the grip section. The joint between the two halves of plastic is not seamless. Very minor issue, but it's there.
 

4. The front of the feed is wider that the nib. Just a little bit.

> Sounds like the nib is set back a bit too far on the feed.  Yeah that would bother me too.

5. The broad nib is impractical. Completely unusable for maths and cheap paper. I'm saving for a spare medium nib unit.

> You should have bought a F or XF nib.  IMHO, a M nib is still be too big for math and cheap paper.


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#12 Runnin_Ute

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 02:52

1. It's way too light. I didn't think this would bug me, as I don't judge pens by their weight. However, the M200 doesn't feel comfortable in the hand. The grip and balance are fine, but the weight makes the pen feel cheap and unpleasant. That's my experience, anyway.

> The weight is just fine for me.  I like the lighter pens, my best long session writers are down at 15 grams.  Heavy pens make my hand tired during long writing sessions.  I do not like heavy pens.

2. Hard starts. This may just be in my case. My broad nib may have baby's bottom. Very disappointing and greatly worsens the writing experience.

> Could be a misshapen tip, or the nib needs adjustment, or you need to switch to a wetter ink.

3. The joint in the grip section. The joint between the two halves of plastic is not seamless. Very minor issue, but it's there.
 

4. The front of the feed is wider that the nib. Just a little bit.

> Sounds like the nib is set back a bit too far on the feed.  Yeah that would bother me too.

5. The broad nib is impractical. Completely unusable for maths and cheap paper. I'm saving for a spare medium nib unit.

> You should have bought a F or XF nib.  IMHO, a M nib is still be too big for math and cheap paper.

I have two M205's  - one with a medium one with a fine. The fine nib is actually a better, smoother writer than the medium. Go figure. Not that there is anything wrong with the medium. The wrong ink will sometimes cause a hard start situation with my medium. But very rarely. Usually if it has been sitting out a while.

 

Agree on the broad nib being impractical for purpose. May be great for correspondence or other uses, but in general a wider nib is going to be poorer on bad paper - regardless of brand. And doing math calculations? Personally, I always used a mechanical pencil for math problems, accounting on ledger paper when I was in school.

 

The joint doesn't bother me because of the way I hold my pens. I write unposted and don't hold on the threads so it is a non issue. As to the weight issue, I didn't know if I would like a pen as light as the M205 (chrome trim)/M200 (gold trim). At the time I got it I was using most of the time my True Writer Silver Anniversary which weighs 30 grams --built on a brass barrel and is much larger. Much easier transition to the M205 (and my 120 Merz & Krell which I got at the same time) than I expected.

 

There have been some good suggestions in this thread.


Brad
 
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#13 ac12

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Posted 31 August 2014 - 04:12

Brad

At the SF Pen Show, I swapped my B nib for an XF nib, and I LIKE IT   :D

I still have the M nib, but now that I've seen and used the XF, I think I'm going to replace that with either a XF or F nib.


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