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Asa Athlete: The Pen With A Character...

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#1 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 10:59

I originally posted this in First Stop. It was my first post. I subsequently realised that the reviews are meant to be posted here.

Athlete-20-500x500.jpgASA Athlete: The pen with a character

 

This review is my first and is intended for a layman.

 

There is usually no best. No best book, no best car and no best movie. Same goes with fountain pens. However, recently I found or discovered a pen which comes very near to being the best in my present collection. This pen was bought from ASApens.in and was named Athlete. I quite enjoyed writing with it. I call it the pen with a character

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As you can perhaps see, the pen is made of ebonite i.e.a hard rubber but feels and looks like wood. How many of us can boast of using an writing instrument made of ebonite. Not many, I guess. Believe me when I say it, the feel of ebonite surpasses plastic, acrylic or even metal. You won't feel the weight. You will not experience the pressure and pain on the tips of your finger while writing for long hours. Your hands will not sweat as much. Moreover, the balance of the pen is very significant when it comes to writing for long durations. This pen has perfect balance. at least for me, posted(putting the cap on the end) or unposted. Despite being of such a large size, I never felt its size or weight even once. Pardon the cliche, but the pen is literally light as a feather.

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The wooden ebonite body has been polished to give it a matt black finish. It adds to the aesthetics of this pen. The pen looks classy and visually appealing. It catches the attention of those around you, provided they care about pens. The 'Athlete' has got a personality of its own. Its exterior speaks of its being a no nonsense , efficient and durable pen. When you keep it with other pens, it dominates them with its presence.

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Athlete is an eyedropper. For a layman, this means that its barrel is filled with ink, unlike say Parker vector or Hero 360. Usually in an eyedropper, the air bubble inside gets warmed up with the heat of the body and expands. This results in burping which means that your page can get ruined and you may end up with a big and sizable blot on your paper. But, thankfully, this is not the case with this pen. I ended up a complete tank and I found no burping. The wooden body apparently acts as an insulator much better than plastic. The ink flow increased when the ink levels dropped but there was no burping. Another problems which eyedropper pens face is leakage. None here though. The cap fits securely and the barrel is securely attached to the nib and feed section. It was a new experience for me. An Eyedropper fountain pen that doesn't leak.!!!

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The best part is nib. These nibs are apparently made in Germany. The engraving says that they are Iridium tipped. You can feel their superior quality. If the best fountain pen you have is a Parker Vector, you would be blown away by the smoothness of the nib. The nib does not have a glossy smooth feel which many a chinese fountain pens have. That is being too smooth to like. There is a very little feedback, which I love, because I can feel myself writing and I can feel the nib gliding on the paper. The nib is a dual tone size #6. For a lay man this can be translated as fairly large nib. Not the largest, but quite large. Having a large nib means that if you have large hands like mine and many of other adult men, you wont be forced to write too close to paper and while writing you can maintain a comfortable hand stance.Moreover the grip section was long and smooth. I got the nib with tines separated. I thought that it would be an issue. But it was not. There was no rail roading. No issues with writing at all. I found the nib and the pen to be made for each other. The feed was a pretty simple ebonite one. It had deep channels. Which is perhaps the reason behind the wet writing.

 

Writing samples of the pen and the comparison with Pilot 'Tank', Pilot MR and Lamy are included. The ink used is commonly available Chelpark and the paper is a JK A4 size paper.

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The service of ASApens.in was excellent. When I bought the pen I used the option of getting the fountain pen checked which is not available on any other indian site. The sellers are professionals. One can any time mail them or call them in respect of any queries  related to fountain pens. I called them and they didn't disappoint me.

              

Now, let me answer the most difficult question about this pen. What I didn't like about it? Well, I liked everything. But I should add a caveat that this is an eyedropper pen which needs a little maintenance just like a samurai sword does :) . And the cap if left posted may leave a round mark on the matt finish. However, the pen is available in many colors on ASApens. Lastly if you feel the ink flow increasing it would be wiser to refill the barrel pen instead of waiting for the ink to be over.

Overall, I recommend this pen. It's a great value for money and a daily writer. One can use it daily without impunity. One can show it off or keep it entirely to himself. It is a work horse, a no nonsense pen. It is one macho of a pen, that dominates other pens and the paper. The pen with a 'Character'.

The review is also available on my blog.

Hope it was helpful. I am soon going to write a review of Doctor Deluxe. A under 3$ pen that quite surprised me with its performance. I call that the reliable housemaid. :)


Edited by mrmohitmishra, 18 November 2014 - 11:03.


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#2 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 19:19

65 views and not a damn reply!!! :angry: :wallbash: :gaah:



#3 Jamerelbe

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 22:02

65 views and not a damn reply!!! :angry: :wallbash: :gaah:

Yup, it happens... Tell me, is the grip section also made of ebonite, or is it plastic?  It looks much more polished than the body of the pen...

 

Thanks for the review, by the way - it really is a nice-looking pen!



#4 plumon

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 23:36

Thanks for the review. It is very good. I would have liked to see the size and weight of the pen stated, although you did say it was "big" but didn't feel heavy).

Also, do you feel the texture when you write with it? ie is it rough or more like just textured?

Thanks



#5 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 23:40

Yup, it happens... Tell me, is the grip section also made of ebonite, or is it plastic?  It looks much more polished than the body of the pen...
 
Thanks for the review, by the way - it really is a nice-looking pen!


Well its also made of Ebonite. This pen is available in a shiny version also. Ebonite is given this matt finish by some process. Thanks for the reply. :)

#6 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 23:47

Thanks for the review. It is very good. I would have liked to see the size and weight of the pen stated, although you did say it was "big" but didn't feel heavy).
Also, do you feel the texture when you write with it? ie is it rough or more like just textured?
Thanks


If you visit the website from where i bought it they have provided exact size of the pen. However as an estimate, the pen is almost the size of a lamy safari. a few mm higher perhaps. It weighs much less than Jinhao x450 and almost equal to a lamy safari.
There wasn't a texture. Its a german nib. They test it before they send it. What I meant by feedback was that the nib is not chinese smooth or say schmidt medium wet. Its a fine nib and connects with the paper. :)

#7 plumon

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Posted 18 November 2014 - 23:56

Thank you for the info. I bought a Gama Eyas from ASA and I'm very happy with it. Thanks to your review, I am going to try the Athlete too.


Edited by plumon, 18 November 2014 - 23:56.


#8 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 19 November 2014 - 00:37

Thank you for the info. I bought a Gama Eyas from ASA and I'm very happy with it. Thanks to your review, I am going to try the Athlete too.


gamma eyas is also a very good pen. Thanks for positive comment

#9 Jamerelbe

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Posted 19 November 2014 - 01:10

Well its also made of Ebonite. This pen is available in a shiny version also. Ebonite is given this matt finish by some process. Thanks for the reply. :)

 

Thanks for that - I asked because the first ebonite pen I bought (a Fountain Pen Revolution Triveni) had a plastic grip section, and this looked a little similar.  (I understand the new Triveni's now come with ebonite grip section.  In the end, the feel of the pen is more important than the material - and the original Triveni is still a pretty nice pen.  Good to hear that this is ebonite all over, though!



#10 Scribblesoften

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Posted 19 November 2014 - 02:01

Thanks for posting the nice review.  I really like the Athlete too.  Mine is a green ripple.  Some photos of my pen are on this link, scroll down to see them.

 

http://www.fountainp...-asapens/page-6



#11 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 19 November 2014 - 04:40

Thanks for posting the nice review.  I really like the Athlete too.  Mine is a green ripple.  Some photos of my pen are on this link, scroll down to see them.
 
http://www.fountainp...-asapens/page-6


It looks pretty in green marble. They are fitting athlete with a jowo nib. I guess i will purchase that next

#12 zdeveric

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Posted 25 November 2014 - 10:37

Just ordered one in shiny black version.



#13 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 25 November 2014 - 13:16

Just ordered one in shiny black version.

You won't be disappointed. I am using only this pen since I bought it. 



#14 zdeveric

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Posted 26 November 2014 - 21:49

You won't be disappointed. I am using only this pen since I bought it. 

I think you have mentioned that Athlete is equiped with Yowo nib. Is that right? There is no need to find better nib.

Can I install Noodler,s nib which is also No. #6?



#15 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 27 November 2014 - 02:53

I think you have mentioned that Athlete is equiped with Yowo nib. Is that right? There is no need to find better nib.
Can I install Noodler,s nib which is also No. #6?


Its not equipped with Jowo nib. It was my first review so I mistook Iridium point germany as a nib made in Germany. The nib is of quite good quality though. Nib is #6. So I think Noodler's nib may fit. But you will have to use with ebonite feed provided with the pen

#16 mhguda

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Posted 27 November 2014 - 04:22

I happen to have both a spare Noodler's nib and Athlete nib on hand, and did a comparison. The Noodler's is slightly bigger. It may fit in the Athlete (I have not tried) but I expect it will protrude farther than the stock nib, and that will cause problems, as it barely clears the inner cap as it is; closing the pen would then quickly result in mismatched tines or worse. And if you push the Noodler's farther in the mismatch between the nib and the feed would likely become problematic.

Then again, I don't think there's a need to put in another nib. The nibs supplied with the Athlete, if tuned by mr Subramaniam at Asapens, are very good. I am used to swapping nibs in many Indian pens, and tuning/tweaking nibs, but these Athlete nibs were excellent as they came. And they are the right size and shape for this pen, IMHO. 


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#17 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 27 November 2014 - 06:07

I happen to have both a spare Noodler's nib and Athlete nib on hand, and did a comparison. The Noodler's is slightly bigger. It may fit in the Athlete (I have not tried) but I expect it will protrude farther than the stock nib, and that will cause problems, as it barely clears the inner cap as it is; closing the pen would then quickly result in mismatched tines or worse. And if you push the Noodler's farther in the mismatch between the nib and the feed would likely become problematic.

Then again, I don't think there's a need to put in another nib. The nibs supplied with the Athlete, if tuned by mr Subramaniam at Asapens, are very good. I am used to swapping nibs in many Indian pens, and tuning/tweaking nibs, but these Athlete nibs were excellent as they came. And they are the right size and shape for this pen, IMHO. 

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#18 J_MM

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Posted 27 November 2014 - 17:25

Very nice review.

 

I have the green version of the Athlete. I did a bit of nib smoothing and it writes great. I used the pen till it was empty and found it had pretty good flow. Except for one small ink blob I would have never thought I was near the end until the ink ran out. John



#19 mrmohitmishra

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Posted 28 November 2014 - 05:37

Very nice review.

 

I have the green version of the Athlete. I did a bit of nib smoothing and it writes great. I used the pen till it was empty and found it had pretty good flow. Except for one small ink blob I would have never thought I was near the end until the ink ran out. John

In my opinion the cap barely contains the nib. So the cap affects tines and thus the need of smoothing arises. Yes I also experienced higheer flow towards the end but nothing else. I am only writing with this pen since I bought it. :-)



#20 zdeveric

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Posted 28 November 2014 - 21:22

I happen to have both a spare Noodler's nib and Athlete nib on hand, and did a comparison. The Noodler's is slightly bigger. It may fit in the Athlete (I have not tried) but I expect it will protrude farther than the stock nib, and that will cause problems, as it barely clears the inner cap as it is; closing the pen would then quickly result in mismatched tines or worse. And if you push the Noodler's farther in the mismatch between the nib and the feed would likely become problematic.

Then again, I don't think there's a need to put in another nib. The nibs supplied with the Athlete, if tuned by mr Subramaniam at Asapens, are very good. I am used to swapping nibs in many Indian pens, and tuning/tweaking nibs, but these Athlete nibs were excellent as they came. And they are the right size and shape for this pen, IMHO. 

Thank you guys. I am waiting for mine to arrive in my postbox. I was a little bit warried about the nib, but you convinced me that everything will be better then I expect.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: asapens, fountain pen, indian fountain pen, ebonite pen, eyedropper, german nib



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