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Thinking Of Buying A Desiderata Pen Instead Of A Waterman 52

flex vintage dip nib desiderata waterman 52

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119 replies to this topic

#21 Linda Medley

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 05:07

Would you pay $16 on top of something that only cost $50?

 

 

 

I thought that was weird too.

 

I don't doubt that they are lovely pens...but...(the voice in my head)....are they worth it???!

I'm confused.

I'm now looking at the similar, but cheaper, Ackerman pump pens. :headsmack:

 

Well, Desiderata is a one-man business; Pierre (PrestoTenebroso, above) makes every pen by hand, so personally I don't mind the, ah, 'manual' way he does business  :) . I've pre-ordered 2 pens from him with no problems.

 

Do yourself a favor and thoroughly research Ackerman Pens before you send Charles Ackerman any money. Just sayin'.



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#22 BookCat

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 05:47

 

Do yourself a favor and thoroughly research Ackerman Pens before you send Charles Ackerman any money. Just sayin'.

 

Oh dear, I read this a little too late! What's the problem? Doesn't he actually ship the pen? I've just ordered a pen (the senior Gillot 303) and an extra section (for the G nib). Total cost: $41 or £27 including shipping.

 

Please tell all.


Edited by BookCat, 10 January 2015 - 05:48.


#23 Linda Medley

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 05:51

 

Oh dear, I read this a little too late! What's the problem? Doesn't he actually ship the pen? I've just ordered a pen (the senior Gillot 303) and an extra section (for the G nib). Total cost: $41 or £27 including shipping.

 

Please tell all.

 

Read this.



#24 TeaHive

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 06:07

In keeping polite, I'll second Linda on researching Ackerman before buying. You may or may not get a pen should you do so.

As for the shipping on the Desiderata, you get your wide flex for under $100 USD total when buying the Daedalus model, in new condition, and replacement nibs are available when it wears out/should one break on you. The total price is much less than that of the Waterman prices you quoted above, and the nib on any vintage pen is not as readily replacable should something happen to it.

You could always just try out G nibs with the Ranga holder (or any other cheapie holder) for awhile to see how you like the nib, then decide.

Oldtimer, the Desiderata pens do have a feed like a regular fountain pen, and it keeps up with the flex very well. And the cap keeps the ink from drying out, for sure. But if you leave the nib in, it will be in constant contact with ink, and the nib will eventually corrode. The plating on Zebra G nibs holds up for a good while. I mentioned above that I've had one in a Noodler's Ahab for about a month. I had to switch it out tonight as the tip was worn, but the corrosion was fairly minimal. So one nib could last longer, if you pull it out of the pen, clean, and dry it before putting the pen up for the day.

#25 TeaHive

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 06:10

Annnd, I see the damage has been done while I was typing my post above. Oops!

#26 Tootles

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 06:11

 

Would you pay $16 on top of something that only cost $50?

 

Yes, if it was something that I really wanted or needed. In fact that is quite commonly what I end up doing when I buy on eBay. Most of my purchases have been in that range. What you are failing to grasp here is that there are no options for me beyond do I buy or not. The reality of living away from the market.



#27 Linda Medley

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 06:18

...and Titanium-coated G nibs should last even longer (I'd take them out of the pen every night as well).  I ordered some from Japan about three and a half weeks ago, and they arrived today. 

 

(Edited to add: oops, i meant this as an addendum to TeaHive's longer post above. 

 

Re. Cryptos's comment above, I agree; it really depends on how much you need/want the item. What it's value is to you is more important than it's relative value to other pens. I think $66 is not expensive for a pen that you cannot get anywhere else.


Edited by Linda Medley, 10 January 2015 - 06:27.


#28 BookCat

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 06:53

I found that thread just after reading your warning, Linda. Oh botherations! Well I also have a Ranga dip pen with feed on order and their service seems great. I intend to use that pen mostly for testing ink mixes, rather than for flex writing. I don't much like the idea of having an open ink bottle which the cats can knock over, so a pen with an ink supply appeals greatly.

 

One reason I ordered the pump pen was the variety of nibs it could take as opposed to only one which the Desiderata takes. Seems like the average time for the pump pen to arrive is about two months! The Desiderata pens are looking nicer and nicer.

 

 

Re. Cryptos's comment above, I agree; it really depends on how much you need/want the item. What it's value is to you is more important than it's relative value to other pens. I think $66 is not expensive for a pen that you cannot get anywhere else.

 

For me the question isn't: $66 isn't expensive for a pen which I can't get elsewhere, but: what else could I buy with $66/£43? Cans of cat food? Pay the phone bill? etc compared to which another fp is just a luxury I want but don't need. Does the 'feel good' factor justify the cost? The majority of my pens were either given to me as presents or are cheap Chinese pens (some of which are really nice). ....But I still battle with myself about buying the more expensive ones which I WANT!

I'm sure we all do this.



#29 Stanley Howler

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 07:59

"domnortheast, thanks for understanding how I feel about being hit with huge shipping costs which you don't expect, especially when it's so large relative to the cost of the item. I hope your Konrad works better than mine... it just drips ink from the nib, so is in a box, never to be seen again."

Mated with the Goulet Pen's italic nib I also bought, the Konrad writes like a dream and is currently my favourite. Shame you've consigned yours to its box. With both my Ahab & the Konrad I pulled them apart as soon as they were out of their boxes and cleaned hem out with some pen flush (water, ammonia & detergent) and reassembled. I found getting the nib/feed/section adjusted correctly to be critical, push the nib and feed in too hard and not enough ink flows down, don't push it in far enough and too much comes down. Once set right though they are fine.

As to the question of need Vs want....there is no end to this madness and it is surprising how quickly one can turn a want into a need in ones head. Just think what you could buy if you didn't have the cat food bill.

Hope your new Ackerman is all you hope for.

Edited by domnortheast, 10 January 2015 - 08:01.


#30 Cob

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 08:31

Oh dear, we are getting our wires crossed.

 

Cryptos, if you read my original post, you'll see that I never did propose spending £200 plus, in fact I had ruled that out and was looking for a 'substitute'. Also I mentioned that I longed for a full-flex nib; all the ones you linked to are semi-flex and still far more than I'd be willing to pay (willing to pay about £100, which is far more than $100).

 

Cob, you point out that your Watermans, which were a reasonable cost, are not full-flex. I don't mind re-saccing, I've done it before.

 

The position at the moment is that I've purchased a Ranga dip pen with ebonite feed and am trying to source some flexy nibs which will fit, even if they have to be dip nibs. Cost £12, free postage from India.

 

domnortheast, thanks for understanding how I feel about being hit with huge shipping costs which you don't expect, especially when it's so large relative to the cost of the item. I hope your Konrad works better than mine... it just drips ink from the nib, so is in a box, never to be seen again.

 

Thanks for your help and advice :)

Well I suppose I wasn't clear; those pens were not reasonably priced because they didn't have full flex nibs; they were reasonably priced because they were unrestored and/or the seller did not include a writing sample in the listing.  I have bought some Swans with fabulous full flex nibs very cheaply for the same reasons.  It's a bit of a lottery really.

 

Cob


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#31 Cob

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 08:38

The best shipping price I have been offered out of the US was $6.95. Not quite sure how they managed that. Most of the time it's around 9-12 dollars, occasionally 14 or 15. Anything over that I don't buy.

Yes I have never quite understood some of the prices for US post.  I have seen "US International Priority Mail" to England priced from $6.50 upwards.

 

The worst was a bandit who wanted $25 to post a nib to the UK. 

 

There are plenty of UK sellers who take the mickey as well - for postage inside the UK.

 

If I ship abroad, everything goes Royal Mail International Signed (and thus usually tracked) I charge £8.50.  Sometimes it costs me £8.30, sometimes £8.80 or a bit more.

 

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#32 Tootles

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 09:15

Absolutely. Kidde sent me a small clutch of dip nibs (thanks again Paul) and simply packaged them into a standard letter envelope. Got here no problem, and it was a surprise gift! Cost was just a couple of dollars or so. Small risk that way, so I wouldn't do it with something that needed special protection or was a great resale value.

 

 

For me the question isn't: $66 isn't expensive for a pen which I can't get elsewhere, but: what else could I buy with $66/£43? Cans of cat food? Pay the phone bill? etc compared to which another fp is just a luxury I want but don't need. Does the 'feel good' factor justify the cost? The majority of my pens were either given to me as presents or are cheap Chinese pens (some of which are really nice). ....But I still battle with myself about buying the more expensive ones which I WANT!

 

BookCat, I get that, and I do feel that way myself, although I do tend to feed myself on other things as well as the cat food. :)

All I am saying is that if I wish to purchase overseas I have to factor in the shipping cost. Beyond a certain limit - which for me is about $15 - I have serious qualms around paying. Especially if the cost is blatantly higher than it needs to be. On the other hand, if there is something I simply must have - and I haven't found anything in this category just yet, desirable yes, indispensable no - then I will make sure I can afford to pay what it takes. Ultimately I am stuck with extra costs, as is any international buyer. How you deal with it is largely a matter of personal taste I suppose.

 

Given the choice between paying 200 GBP +shipping for a Waterman and paying 43 GBP for a Desiderata + shipping, with my limited funds I am more inclined to go with the latter. If money was not an issue then go with the former. As my finances are very restricted I cannot even afford the Desiderata right now. However, I can afford $10 for a holder and some dip nibs, and that sates my curiosity for flexy nibs for the moment.

 

Besides which, I bought a Mabie Todd Blackbird from Cob (cheers again!) last year and it was a lot less than either of the two FPs mentioned above. And it has a very flexible nib.

 

If you want flex, do not restrict yourself to Waterman - unless that's your aesthetic ideal (pun intended) - as there are plenty of no-name vintage pens out there with wonderful nibs. Just need to dig around.

 

Sorry, not having a go at you, just would like to see you find something that you will have fun with.


Edited by Cryptos, 10 January 2015 - 09:16.


#33 balson

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 15:16

Why not look for a vintage pen that is regional to England?  mabie todd comes to mind as a company that i often here of as having good flexible nibs.  i am sure others could chime in about good vintage english brands.  

 

It sounds like what you are paying a premium for is your search terms.  I third what others have said about you should be able to find a user grade 52 for less than that.  there is nothing wrong with a brown pen, and if you are looking into a desiderata pen then it should not matter if the clip is missing either.  i sell user grade restored 52's like that with flexible nibs for $75.  

 

For performance if you are going to get a desiderata flex pen just make sure you spend the $3 first and try out a dip pen.  using an untipped pen is a very different experience than a fountain pen with tipping.  even a fountain pen without tipping that has been properly grinned and shaped is a much smoother experience 



#34 PrestoTenebroso

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 15:36

I found that thread just after reading your warning, Linda. Oh botherations! Well I also have a Ranga dip pen with feed on order and their service seems great. I intend to use that pen mostly for testing ink mixes, rather than for flex writing. I don't much like the idea of having an open ink bottle which the cats can knock over, so a pen with an ink supply appeals greatly.

 

One reason I ordered the pump pen was the variety of nibs it could take as opposed to only one which the Desiderata takes. Seems like the average time for the pump pen to arrive is about two months! The Desiderata pens are looking nicer and nicer.

 

 

 

For me the question isn't: $66 isn't expensive for a pen which I can't get elsewhere, but: what else could I buy with $66/£43? Cans of cat food? Pay the phone bill? etc compared to which another fp is just a luxury I want but don't need. Does the 'feel good' factor justify the cost? The majority of my pens were either given to me as presents or are cheap Chinese pens (some of which are really nice). ....But I still battle with myself about buying the more expensive ones which I WANT!

I'm sure we all do this.

Speaking as a man who has been cheap all his life, I just want to warn you about using opportunity cost to make decisions. Using it all the time can lead to a bottomless well of crazy. 



#35 TMK

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 17:30

I do believe that personally I would buy the W52.



#36 strictlyobiter

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 17:31

Can you cancel the order for the Ackerman? Horrible experience with that pen, I couldn't reccomend it even to an enemy.

#37 Linda Medley

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 19:49

I found that thread just after reading your warning, Linda. Oh botherations! Well I also have a Ranga dip pen with feed on order and their service seems great. I intend to use that pen mostly for testing ink mixes, rather than for flex writing. I don't much like the idea of having an open ink bottle which the cats can knock over, so a pen with an ink supply appeals greatly.

 

One reason I ordered the pump pen was the variety of nibs it could take as opposed to only one which the Desiderata takes. Seems like the average time for the pump pen to arrive is about two months! The Desiderata pens are looking nicer and nicer.

 

 

 

For me the question isn't: $66 isn't expensive for a pen which I can't get elsewhere, but: what else could I buy with $66/£43? Cans of cat food? Pay the phone bill? etc compared to which another fp is just a luxury I want but don't need. Does the 'feel good' factor justify the cost? The majority of my pens were either given to me as presents or are cheap Chinese pens (some of which are really nice). ....But I still battle with myself about buying the more expensive ones which I WANT!

I'm sure we all do this.

 

BookCat, I apologize; my comment was incredibly callous, considering your situation! Of course you shouldn't put a pen purchase over paying bills or feeding kitties! 

 

I think the Ranga pen is a good idea, for both testing inks and practicing flex writing.  I wonder if there's any way that you could test-drive some of the pens that you're interested in before purchasing? Do you have a local pen club, or pen show? 

 

I know it's difficult to resist impulse buying :) . I've learned the hard way that you really do have to take the time to research everything, and even so, buying a vintage pen is always a bit of a gamble (I've purchased Waterman 52s off ebay that the seller claimed was in great condition, had been re-sacced, etc...only to find that the feed was totally gunked up with ancient ink). 

 

I truly hope you find what you're looking for, in one of the options you've chosen!



#38 BookCat

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 20:15

So many interesting and amusing points have been made that I really don't know where to start.

 

It puzzles me how sellers in India and China can ship at no extra cost when US sellers sometimes try to charge as much as the item itself. I've seen the latter especially in items like keyboards.

 

Linda, thank you, but don't feel bad. We're all in different situations and can't know one another's circumstances. The cats are well-fed and see the vet when needed, and bills get paid...eventually.

 

Cryptos, thanks for the giggle:

 

I do tend to feed myself on other things as well as the cat food. :)

:lticaptd: So do I!

 

I'm hoping to buy some dip nibs which fit the Ranga dip pen with feed so that I can get used to using dip nibs. I've asked for suggestions in another thread. These pens have some great reviews.

 

Presto, I don't quite understand this comment,

 

Speaking as a man who has been cheap all his life, I just want to warn you about using opportunity cost to make decisions. Using it all the time can lead to a bottomless well of crazy.

 

especially the tern "opportunity cost". Please explain, you seem to be saying something very meaningful which I don't understand. :headsmack:

 

strictlyobiter, I paid via PayPal and the money is already showing as gone. If I try to cancel the order will I get my money back? I've read so many bad things about how C A does business that I don't trust him to refund.

 

balson:

 

It sounds like what you are paying a premium for is your search terms.  I third what others have said about you should be able to find a user grade 52 for less than that.  there is nothing wrong with a brown pen, and if you are looking into a desiderata pen then it should not matter if the clip is missing either.  i sell user grade restored 52's like that with flexible nibs for $75.

 

Please suggest terms likely to find the less expensive pens. I've been using things like: Vintage Waterman 52 fountain pen, or: Vintage flex fountain pen. Any help welcome. Where do you sell your pens?

 

I've probably forgotten to include a comment which I've found really helpful but will keep up with the thread. Thanks.



#39 Nanor

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 20:15

Arriving late to the discussion but for what it's worth:

I have a W52v that writes beautifully; bought on ebay for around £50 after much searching and a gamble that paid off.

I also have a Desiderata Pen with a Zebra G nib and if I had to choose between them, I'd pick the Desiderata.  


Edited by Nanor, 11 January 2015 - 14:20.


#40 BookCat

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Posted 10 January 2015 - 20:22

Arriving late to the discussion but for what it's worth:

I have a W52v that writes beautifully; bought on ebay for around £50 after much searching and a gamble that payed off.

I also have a Desiderata Pen with a Zebra G nib and if I had to choose between them, I'd pick the Desiderata.  

 

Why? Please tell me what you like about the Desiderata in particular and what the W52v lacks by comparison.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: flex, vintage, dip nib, desiderata, waterman 52



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