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Omas Arte Italiana Arco Paragon


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12 replies to this topic

#1 lecorbusier

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 23:48

I could call this the Omas day...Both a package from the Omas Society and my new Arco arrived in a spade of two hours! The OS sent me a nice Omas notepad and a fairly big piece of polishing cloth plus a membership card and a fairly substantial catalogue. But onto the more exciting arrival of the day--the Paragon Arco!

Since this is a first impression review, I will only review my first impressions. I think I will have more profound impressions after using this for a few weeks during those workhorse writing sessions...

Appearance/Finish:

Initially I was a little anxious about the faceted body since I have always used a cylindrical barrel all my life but it is actually quite comfortable. The Arco is as reported here: depending on the angle and light, it is quite subtle. There is some of those Japanese "gold-leaf" aesthetic to it. Since this is my first celluloid pen--I have always been a metal pen person until I hit this board: "bad" influence smile.gif--I did not know what to expect but the Arco celluloid is really quite impressive in person. Finish is top notch but the sterling silver section has some faint 'black' tarnish like marks on it...Other than that, perfect.

user posted image


Size/Weight:

I have heard some remarked that the pen is heavy. A few minutes of use, and compared side by side with the Emotica informed me that the Emotica actually feels heftier. The Paragon is slightly longer and wider than the Emotica but not by much (and my Emotica is black, so it should 'look' more compact visually). Some remarked before that this new Arte Italiana with the new metal section writes on its own weight. I feel that this is almost instinctively true at first use but what is remarkable about this pen is that after a few minutes of writing, it is neither end nor top heavy: it is really quite well-balanced! Compared to the Emotica, this pen when posted is top heavy making it uncomfortable for long sessions.

Filling System:

Piston filled. Also my first piston filled pen. It is not completely smooth but you feel a nice tactile 'turning' effect to it as you turn it. Whether this is normal or not awaits more use. But I can see myself using this for quite a while before refilling: 2.6ml!

I should also add that posting in this pen seems to interfere with the piston knob. When trying to unpost, there is a tendency to turn the knob. Maybe this is a piston filled pen problem?

Nib:

Ah...I wrote side by side with the Emotica F Ti nib. I think Mike S's description on the Emotica is right on: teflon smooth--a very nice tactile feel as you write. The F nib on the Arco on the other hand is very smooth, but not Namiki buttery smooth like. Depending on the pressure and angle you exert on the paper, it feels different but it has a feel to it. As compared to the Namiki broad I have, you feel that this is something that becomes a part of your writing hand, while the Namiki still feels like an instrument that slowly dissolves into the background. They are both nice but the Omas has a nice tactile yet smooth feel to it while the Namiki is nearly 'effortless' (caveat: I am using different inks: Omas Noodler's and Namiki: PR). On a grade of 0 to 10, 0 being buttery smooth nearing unity between pen and paper and 10 being the most toothy, the Namiki gets 1 and the Ti nib gets 7 while the Arco gets 5. I think I still like my Emotica nib better from the tactility than the gold nib of the Arco but we shall see!

user posted image

Conclusion:

On first impression and upon a short writing session, this is an extremely well-made pen. I thought it might be bling-bling but it is actually quite subdued under normal lighting. But once under near yellow light, I think it might be bling-bling because of the golden reflection of the Arco. I think this is also my last pen for a while and I will look into customized nib from now given the nice comments I get from my students on how my hand writing looks with a music nib!

I purchased this pen from Bromfield Pens in Boston, a very nice pen shop I visited every few weeks when I lived there and the transaction was very pleasant and smooth. I should have received this pen sooner if not for the storm that just plagued the northeast.

Happy!

Edited by lecorbusier, 26 March 2007 - 23:56.

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#2 Celticshaman

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 01:36

Thanks for the review.I think it is safe to say that a majority of FPN members have admired this pen and it's looks.I list it at the top of my "grail" pen wants.
Ahhh someday.

JD

#3 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 27 March 2007 - 21:23

I own the arte italiana in black and I can only agree with you.
Pens are like watches , once you start a collection, you can hardly go back. And pens like all fine luxury items do improve with time

#4 Sazerac

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 18:53

Thanks for the review. Gorgeous pen! I’ve been saving for one of these for a while now and will make my purchase shortly. Since there are no B & M stores that carry OMAS pens for hundreds of miles, I’ve not tried the new Arte Italiana.

I have been wondering, however, whether or not your fingers slide down the metal nib section as you’re writing. This is something that I fear with the new OMAS metal nib sections. I have a few old Paragons, and this is not a problem. Is it with the new Paragons, anyone? (I experience this finger slippage a slight bit with my Lamy 2000.)


#5 Celticshaman

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 19:17

I have to agree with Sazerac on the slippage point.There a re a few brands and models where i don't have this problem though.Not sure why.Maybe it is a metallurgical issue.My Visconti Van Goghs don't cause my fingers to slip and they have silver sections.I tried the Omas reviewed here and it felt good but then again it was for a total of maybe 1 minute that i held it.
My Signum Nova has a gold section and my fingers slip a wee bit.

So if i purchase an Arco Celluloid it will be the older model with celluloid all the way down.

Thanks for the review.Delightful pen!!

JD

#6 Freeloader

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 20:54

QUOTE (handlebar @ Mar 28 2007, 07:17 PM)
So if i purchase an Arco Celluloid it will be the older model with celluloid all the way down.

This review has made me tingle all over. I've got one of the older Paragon's ordered in the brown celluloid, and I'm bursting at the seams waiting for it. ph34r.gif

#7 lecorbusier

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 00:27

I think slippage is dependent on the intensity of your grip. I grip my pen pretty tightly so the metal section is really quite irrelevant. However, I do realize from this that the pen that has the most slippage as far as my experience is concerned is my Namiki Bamboo with the smooth plastic section. Perhaps with the stepped design, one tends to grip less on the pen and slippage occurs.

There are indeed some "tarnished" like marks on the metal section. While the nib is dead on, I am debating if I want to have it sent back to the HQ if a silver polishing solution does not work, or to simply accept it and move on. So for those who are planning to get one, please do watch out for this QC problem. Any similar observations from other Paragon owners?

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#8 Celticshaman

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 00:50




I have just received my "new" Paragon in the post today.It is a black HT older model.I will be reviewing it soon.Never can enough reviews i figure.
The Arte Italiana models are a dream in my opinon.

JD

#9 Maja

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 06:23

QUOTE (handlebar @ Mar 26 2007, 05:36 PM)
Thanks for the review.I think it is safe to say that a majority of FPN members have admired this pen and it's looks.I list it at the top of my "grail" pen wants.
Ahhh someday.

JD

Same here!

It's not the cover girl (or boy) on the 2007 Fountain Pen Hospital catalog for nuthin'! laugh.gif
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#10 mike1

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 08:55

Love that pen.
"Work like you don't need the money. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody's watching." Satchel Paige, Baseball Hall of Fame Pitcher

#11 marklavar

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 09:18

I definitely prefer the older Omas models. The nibs were always buttery smooth, so it seems that nib quality has deteriorated in the more recent nibs.

#12 John Cullen

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 12:45

hi thanks for the well thought out descriptions of the feel of the nibs on paper. I have many pens that are very smooth but they all have, as you say, a different type of smoothness. I doubt in a blindfold test I would mistake my Paragon for my Bamboo or my Carene. When it comes to describing smoothness and its variations, many of us, myself included, sometimes have a hard time with descriptions. Thanks for your nice job., j

#13 Ged

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Posted 29 March 2007 - 13:26

Very nice looking pen, adore that nib design!






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