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The “Triveni Junior” From Fountain Pen Revolution (Fpr)

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#1 Jamerelbe

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Posted 18 December 2014 - 14:01

It was about 12 months now, in December 2013, that I purchased the ‘Triveni’, the latest offering from Kevin at Fountain Pen Revolution (FPR - check out their website at http://fountainpenrevolution.com/).  I’d already sampled a few FPR nibs, and found them very much to my liking – especially their flex nib.  I wasn’t a great fan of their first pen, the Dilli - it was just too hard to clean - but the Triveni promised to be different: built from sturdier material (your choice of acrylic or ebonite, in a few different colours), a cartridge converter pen that could be easily converted to eyedropper, and built (so it seemed) to a much higher standard.  And so it proved to be.

 

My one and only gripe with the Triveni, if you could call it that, was its size.  The length of the pen meant that it wouldn’t clip comfortably into my shirt pockets – which meant that this was destined to be more of a stay-at-home pen.  So I was pleased to hear that Kevin was planning a ‘Junior’ version of the Triveni – and very quick to ‘pull the trigger’ when the Triveni Junior came out, this time ordering an acrylic version.

 

Let me say it up front: I love this pen.  It’s my first acrylic pen (which means I have no real point of comparison), very reasonably priced, looks great feels comfortable to write with – and is a better size for daily carry and use.  I won’t be ‘scoring’ the pen as such in the review below – but hopefully you’ll get the idea!

 

[Please note, I have not been compensated in any way for this review, and obtained the pen at my own expense.]

 

______________________________________________________________________

 

1.    Appearance & Design
The first thing I noticed about this pen when it arrived was the bright colouration of the acrylic – that, and the ‘pearlescence’ of the material.  It’s impossible to capture in photographs, but as you turn the pen it seems like you can ‘see into’ it, especially the blue/white swirls.  The clip is simple but functional, and sturdily built. 
 

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Two key differences between the Triveni Junior and its ‘big brother’ become evident when you uncap the pen: first of all, gone is the black plastic grip section the original Triveni ‘borrowed’ from the Serwex MB – replaced by a custom-made grip section that matches the pen, and is made from the same material; and secondly, the stainless steel #5 nib has been replaced by a larger (#5.5) two-toned nib.  I understand the full-sized Triveni now also comes with the larger nib – and that the grip section will be updated sometime early in 2015, once the current stock has sold out and been replaced.  The new section is a big improvement, both in terms of aesthetics and of comfort.

 

2.    Construction & Quality
As with its larger predecessor, the Triveni Junior seems well-made.  The screws on the cap and grip section have tight tolerances, preventing nib dry-out (in the case of the cap) and allowing the pen to be used as an ‘eyedropper’ pen (in the case of the grip section).  I admit, I prefer the relative simplicity of using a cartridge converter – but the option is there if you want a larger ink capacity. 

I love the acrylic material this pen is made from – the swirl patterns and the pearlescence are pretty easy on the eye.  I don’t consider myself qualified, though, to comment on the quality of the material – but the pen barrel is around 1.5mm thick, which I think makes for good durability.

 

3.    Weight & Dimensions
In most respects, the Triveni Junior matches the specs of the Triveni – except as far as length is concerned.  Weighing in at 20g, the ‘Junior’ is 13cm long capped, 11.5cm uncapped, and ~15cm when posted (compared with 14.7cm, 13.6 cm, and ~18cm respectively for the larger pen).  The pen is just long enough to write with unposted – but I find it more comfortable, and maybe a little better balanced, when posted.

 

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The diameter of the lid is around 14mm, and the barrel is ~12.5mm at its widest point.  The grip section tapers down slightly from a diameter of 11mm just beyond the threads for the cap – these are smoothly machined, and I tend to find myself holding the pen here.

 

4.    Nib & Performance
The pen came as requested with a flex nib installed – I also ordered an EF nib as an optional extra.  With the flex nib installed, the pen glided across the page nicely, laying down a consistent, fine-ish line, offering just enough feedback to know that the pen was sitting on the page.  With a moderate amount of downward pressure, it was possible to get the pen to flex.  The feed on the Triveni pens is plastic, so cannot be heat set or adjusted, but for the most part, I found it kept up pretty well with the demand for ink.  I found it was less prone to railroading if I ‘primed’ the feed by cranking the cartridge converter a little. 

 

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The EF nib, unfortunately, was fairly scratchy when I first swapped it into the pen – which surprised me, as every FPR nib I’ve tried in the past (I have a fair stockpile!) has been wonderfully smooth.  The problem was very easily solved, though, by running the tip of the nib gently over some micromesh.  Being an EF nib, it still offers a little more feedback on the page than the flex nib, but no more so than the F nibs on my two Pilot pens, or the EF nibs on my TWSBIs.

 

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Overall, the performance of these new two-tone #5.5 nibs seems pretty comparable to the stainless steel #5 nibs I’ve purchased from FPR before.  These are good quality nibs, at a very reasonable price. 

 

5.    Filling System & Maintenance
The Triveni derives its name, at least in part, from the Triveni Sangam, a confluence of three rivers in India (according to the website) – but also from the fact that the pen has three possible modes of filling: eyedropper, standard international cartridge, or cartridge converter.  The converter that comes with the Triveni Junior is a screw-type converter (I got a slider-converter with the older Triveni).  In terms of quality this was a step (or several) above the cheap plastic converters that come with most Chinese pens, and worked well.  The grip section threads a long way into the barrel, to facilitate conversion of the pen to eyedropper mode.

 

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6.    Cost & Value
This, in some ways, is probably the best thing about both Triveni models: for US$29 (ebonite) or $35 (acrylic), plus $3 postage you can have a well-made, smooth writing fountain pen in your hands (add another $3 for a flex nib or a broad).  That’s very competitive pricing, for a pretty good quality product.  Bear in mind, too, that for only $3 (or $7 for flex and for broad), you can order an additional nib to swap in. 

 

7.    Conclusion

I loved my ebonite Triveni pen when I first purchased it, and it’s a pen I continue to enjoy using at my desk – but for me at least the Triveni Junior is an even better option: a pen that’s more readily portable, but offers much the same writing experience.  If you’re looking for a lower-cost ebonite or acrylic pen, this is definitely worth a look!


Edited by Jamerelbe, 18 December 2014 - 14:13.


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#2 Jamerelbe

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Posted 18 December 2014 - 14:03

For those interested, the inks used for this review:

 

Toucan Aqua (Triveni Junior, EF nib); 

Toucan Bright Blue (Triveni Junior, flex nib); and 

J. Herbin Perle Noire (Triveni original, flex nib).

 

I should also mention, the Triveni Junior doesn't seem to be available in the 'Red Sea' acrylic at present - but there are plenty of other options!  


Edited by Jamerelbe, 18 December 2014 - 14:07.


#3 mohamedelegipcio

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Posted 18 December 2014 - 19:09

Thanks for the nice review


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#4 pqu11

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Posted 21 December 2014 - 21:55

Thank you for the great review and for the comparison with the standard model. I really can't decide, I want ebonite and the ebonite section on the Junior is much more desirable but the size of the standard is a lot more pleasing. Anyway the review helped.



#5 Jamerelbe

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Posted 21 December 2014 - 23:30

I dropped Kevin from FPR a line before posting this review - just to make sure I had my facts straight. He advised me that future batches of the Triveni will come with matching grip sections, but that won't be happening till next year. So your three options are:

(1) Buy a Triveni Junior with matching grip section
(2) Buy a Triveni original with black plastic grip section
(3) Wait a couple of months (I think Kevin said late January, but I'd allow a month or two for production delays etc) and buy the larger Triveni with matching grip section.

The existing black section works perfectly well, but imho the new grip sections are definitely an improvement to the design. All the best making up your mind!

#6 discopig

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Posted 22 December 2014 - 01:42

I have a Triveni Jr in green ebonite, it's a great pen.



#7 Davros

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Posted 23 December 2014 - 00:28

Thanks for the review! I really like my Triveni, and will probably break down and buy a Junior, too.

#8 pqu11

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Posted 23 December 2014 - 21:29

For those interested, the inks used for this review:

 

Toucan Aqua (Triveni Junior, EF nib); 

Toucan Bright Blue (Triveni Junior, flex nib); and 

J. Herbin Perle Noire (Triveni original, flex nib).

 

I should also mention, the Triveni Junior doesn't seem to be available in the 'Red Sea' acrylic at present - but there are plenty of other options!  

 Ah, thanks for the reply. I just now noticed... In the meantime I ordered the Junior in green. It's really great news that the standard Triveni will be coming with matching section at all, I'll happily wait for that, that is if the junior performs to my liking. Thanks for sharing the info.


Edited by danieln, 23 December 2014 - 21:31.


#9 amuanti1993

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:45

wonderful review!! btw how good is the nib, and how good in the build quality? Matt from THE PEN HABIT said that the build quality was not upto scratch, do you agree?

#10 Jamerelbe

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 00:01

wonderful review!! btw how good is the nib, and how good in the build quality? Matt from THE PEN HABIT said that the build quality was not upto scratch, do you agree?

 

I saw Matt's review, and was surprised he'd found the pen so unsatisfactory.  I believe the FPR folks reached out to him and offered to replace the pen - and I've found their follow-up / customer service to be pretty good.  Bearing in mind that the Triveni Junior has some new design features (primarily the grip section and nib), I've been pretty happy with both pens (a third one is on the way...).  [I share his low opinion of the Dilli - just too hard to clean out, and if you get ink caught behind the head of the piston, it can't be disassembled to get it out.]  I don't know if Matt will ever do a follow-up on the Triveni - I wish he would, but given he's on a hiatus at the moment and has flagged some changes to his future approach, I'm not holding my breath!  I respect his opinion - he's very thorough as a reviewer - but I think he may just have gotten a dud.

 

Without re-reading the Pen Habit review (and therefore going from memory), I'd say the following:

 

(1) I think Matt found the end of the clip problematic - his clip had sharp edges where it had been folded over?  The clips on both my Trivenis are nicely springy, I haven't found them overly sharp, and they don't seem to catch on my pocket.

 

(2) I've never had real problems with the nib fitting into the feed - a tiny bit loose, maybe, but no difficulty getting it to fit snugly.  That said, when I inquired about what kind of grip section my latest purchase (a brown Triveni) would come with, I was told it would have the old grip (Serwex MB) grip section the Triveni was built to accommodate, but with a new (two-tone, #5.5) nib installed.  I was also advised that the new, larger nib fits the old section better - but I haven't tried it out for myself yet.

 

(3) I've never had any real problems with any of the FPR nibs.  The original, stainless steel #5 nibs all write well for me - though I don't find there's a huge difference between their EF, F and M nibs in terms of the line they lay down.  The Fine Stub WILL catch on your paper - in my experience, these nibs have fairly sharp edges.

 

I've been very happy with the build quality of these pens - the cap and body are well-made, nicely polished, with no visible gaps between component parts.  The nibs really are good quality, especially for the price, and far superior to the nibs that come 'standard' with their Serwex pens especially. I think I mention in the review that the EF nib (in the #5.5 range) needed a bit of smoothing, but the flex pen was a dream to write with, right from the beginning.  
 

Sorry if this is information overload.  I don't have any really high-end ebonite or acrylic pens to compare this to - but for the price point, these are lovely pens to look at, and very pleasant to write with.


Edited by Jamerelbe, 30 December 2014 - 11:19.


#11 amuanti1993

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 08:54

Thank you for the detailed reply! And no, the "information overload" was very helpful and the time spent for it is greatly appreciated.
I've just ordered a triveni jr. the green marbled acrylic version with a medium nib after reading your review. :)

#12 Jamerelbe

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 11:21

Thank you for the detailed reply! And no, the "information overload" was very helpful and the time spent for it is greatly appreciated.
I've just ordered a triveni jr. the green marbled acrylic version with a medium nib after reading your review. :)

 

Glad to hear it - happy to share my experience of the pen.  If you don't mind, I'd love to hear what you think of the Triveni Jnr, when it arrives!



#13 Jamerelbe

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Posted 31 December 2014 - 04:10

A comparison of the Triveni Junior with my original (black ebonite) Triveni, and the mottled brown one that just arrived.  Note the two larger pens have the same black plastic grip section - but the newer Triveni has the larger two-tone nib.  It looks fine, but I think the matching section on the Triveni Jnr is a better look.

 

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The Trivenis are now out of stock, according to the FPR website - here's hoping they have the new sections when they return!

 

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#14 amuanti1993

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Posted 01 January 2015 - 09:24

Just got it! beautiful pen! :) (sorry for the poor picture quality).

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Edited by amuanti1993, 01 January 2015 - 10:28.


#15 Geert Jan

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Posted 01 January 2015 - 16:28

Thank you for the review. It made me decide to take the plunge and go for the Triveni junior (the green ebonite). As Jamerebe remarked: the 'regular' Trivenis are listed as out of stock, so I guess the matching section is coming sooner rather than later.

 

Just out of curiousity: I got my reply from Paypal about the payment, but no confirmation from FPR (yet). Is that normal, because the guys are on holidays, or is something wrong?



#16 pqu11

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Posted 01 January 2015 - 20:58

Nothing wrong I think, I too had to wait a bit for the email but it was all right in the end.



#17 Jamerelbe

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Posted 01 January 2015 - 22:41

Apart from the PayPal acknowledgement, the only notification I get from the folk at FPR following an order is the notice of shipping. So far, every order (I've placed 6 or so over the past 12 months) has come through fine. So I'd give them a couple of days from the end of their family vacation (the dates are on the website), then drop them a line if there's still no word.

#18 Geert Jan

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Posted 02 January 2015 - 08:55

Thanks for your replies, those made me feel a lot better. I got an e-mail from Kevin as well, telling me that shipments would be starting 12 January. Great service, though I do feel a bit guilty now for interrupting his holidays (and I won't make matters worse by replying to the e-mail :) ). Kevin: sorry for the disturbance, and thank you for the great service.

 

Geert Jan



#19 lovemy51

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Posted 02 January 2015 - 09:38

can't say i like the resin body color (i think i like the ebonite better), but the writing is sweet! 



#20 ProfMS

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Posted 07 January 2015 - 01:20

I bought a Triveni Ebonite with a flexible nib a few months ago.  I must say that for the price of $ 32 (including shipping), it is very hard to beat the Tiveni. The flexible nib is somewhere between a Fine and a Medium. I have already bought 3 pens from Kevin and each time the delivery took about one week from India to Poland.







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