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My New Hero 359 "summer Color" Lamy Safari Copycat Review

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14 replies to this topic

#1 Koshy

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Posted 01 April 2015 - 05:38

I am aware that there are a few threads on this pen, but could not rresist posting my own review. I purchased a Hero 359 aka, Summer Color, Passion Fruit Yellow fountain pen. This is a Lamy Safari lookalike and made by the Chinese pen Company, Hero. I have used Hero pens extensively in my school days in the Early Sixties and have fond memories of that brand. Lamy is my all time favourite fountain pen and when Hero makes an imitation of it, how can I resist buying? Especially whern it costs Rs.575 ( Just about US $ 9)!

 

Pen9323.JPG

 

You may find the detailed review on my blog

http://mypenaffair.blogspot.in/

 


I wear my Pen as others do their Sword.
John Oldham

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#2 shanbo

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Posted 03 April 2015 - 13:32

Hi koshy

Where did you get this pen ?

Did you  pick it up online?



#3 mcgeechan

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Posted 05 April 2015 - 18:58

They are nice, I bought a purple one as Lamy will not make me a purple Safari :)



#4 suchan271

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 19:18

I love them! 

 

http://imgur.com/4pQHcgF

 

This one cost $13CAD shipped with complete EF/F/M sections, 8 cartridges and a converter - the perfect knockabout.  Upon testing the writing was so surprisingly pleasant I ordered one of each color :)


"Convenience will be the death of us all."


#5 anup

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Posted 05 June 2015 - 11:37

Looks nice. Somehow,I feel that Hero Summer color FPs are overpriced. But people will buy them - those who have Lamy and those who dont have Lamy. So its a win situation for Hero.


I put my savings to test

Lamy & Pilot FPs the Best

No more I even think of the rest

(Preference Fine and Extra Fine Nibs)

Pen is meant for writing - not for looking :-)


#6 JFQ

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Posted 06 June 2015 - 15:21

I love them! 

 

http://imgur.com/4pQHcgF

 

This one cost $13CAD shipped with complete EF/F/M sections, 8 cartridges and a converter - the perfect knockabout.  Upon testing the writing was so surprisingly pleasant I ordered one of each color :)

Where are you purchasing them at that price? I would like to order a bunch as well.



#7 Sailor Kenshin

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Posted 06 June 2015 - 15:27

I have two of the original Summer Colors, a black and a white with M nibs. And they came with the carts and a con. Excellent writers! I did have the purple also but gave it away.

Have you seen the 'Kakuno Colors' version...with the transparent section? They come with the same cart/con deal and a choice of F or XF nibs.

I bought 'em all.

#8 suchan271

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Posted 06 June 2015 - 21:19

Where are you purchasing them at that price? I would like to order a bunch as well.

 

I picked mine up from this ebay seller - http://goo.gl/9kyzee.  Took about three weeks or so, but everything was packaged carefully with nothing damaged.

 

edit : The add claims 6 cartridges, but there are actually 8 - an awesome deal regardless.


Edited by suchan271, 06 June 2015 - 21:20.

"Convenience will be the death of us all."


#9 hilsedwards

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Posted 08 June 2015 - 08:51

Can  you swap in a Lamy Safari nib? I'd like to swap in my 1.5 Lamy nib instead of the supplied F or M



#10 ecologito

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 17:17

I got two of these pens, one with a fine and one with extra fine nibs. I was hoping that they would be as fine as the Platinum pens but they are not. 

 

A bit disappointed on that aspect as I like really fine writing lines. They do write very smoothly, and I like the size and weight of the pen itself. 



#11 mobileace

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 06:48

This Lamy copy now cost cheaper. Can get about $2



#12 bob_hayden

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Posted 23 September 2016 - 17:13

I got a couple pastel 359A's from jewelrymathematics on eBay for $8 each which is about the current going price on eBay USA.  You can get the price down a bit if you are willing to buy in quantity or from a seller with a lower satisfaction rating. 

 

I think the first thing to say is that both pens write very nicely -- much better than the average Chinese fountain pen.  I actually prefer it to the one and only Lamy I still have.  It is too soon to say how subject the finish is to scratches, but in my experience I would rate Lamy near the bottom of the heap in that regard.  I had a dark blue Lamy Safari with a glossy plastic finish and that got very scratched in light use.  I had an Al-Star aluminum-clad one that developed a large boo-boo where the finish had worn off.  And my remaining flat grey one does not have those problems but is very subject to ink stains, as was the demonstrator I once had.  So I will be surprised if the Hero fares worse, and actually expect it may fare better.    But let's wait until we have some data beofre pressing this too far;-)

 

What really interests me about these pens is something I have not seen mentioned here at FPN: What kind of cartridges to they take?  The conventional wisdom online seems to be that they take standard international cartridges, though I am not sure why people say that.  One reviewer even went so far as to give this as the reason for rating the Hero above the Lamy.

 

However, Hero itself seems to think otherwise.  On eBay you can find Hero 359 cartridges that are described in some listings as fitting only the 359 pen.  Now why would Hero make such a product it its existing international cartridges fit just fine?  Other listings give some dimensions instead of naming pen models, and suggest you make sure the dimensions match your pen.  These dimensions are closer to those of the Parker/Lamy cartridges than to international cartridges.   My own 359A's showed up with these same 359 cartridges.  I compared these, and the converter that was included, to short international cartridges and Parker and Lamy cartridges.  The nipple seemed obviously more like the Parker/Lamy size than the international.  I tried putting the international cartridge in the 359A.  Thanks to the clear section, I could see it distorting but not puncturing as I increased pressure.  Being a good engineer, I did not force it.  Instead I put a Parker cartridge in one pen and a Lamy in the other.  Both punctured readily and wrote right away. 

 

I only tried two pens from a single source, and they were 359A's, not the original 359, so I wonder if anyone else has thoughts on using international cartridges on at least some 359s.  It would make sense for a Lamy copy to take Lamy cartridges, but for the user that rather restricts the variety of inks available in cartridges.

 

PS

 

I tried one of the Hero converters in a Parker pen and it seemed to fit OK.  I did not ink it.  I tried the Hero cartridges in a Parker Vector and a Frontier.  It was too fat to fit in the Vector but it did fit in the Frontier and I was able to puncture it BUT the cartridge did not attach.  It was loose and would just fall out if I tipped up the pen.  


Edited by bob_hayden, 24 September 2016 - 02:08.


#13 Jamerelbe

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Posted 24 September 2016 - 05:14

@bob_hayden, I have a few of these Hero cartridges, that came with cheap pastel kids' fountain pens (358s? can't remember!) that I reviewed quite a while ago.  They look like Parker-style openings to me, and that would fit with the oft-reported rumours that Hero used to manufacture pens for Parker.  Parker and Lamy cartridges have very similar apertures, so I'm not surprised to read that you were able to make both work - not sure the cartridge converters are quite as interchangeable, but I confess I haven't tried that.

 

The other thing I like about these Parker-style cartridges is that (1) they're longer, and carry more ink, than a short standard international; and (2) the ones I have are made of pretty heavy-duty plastic, and seem to be pretty durable if you want to reuse and refill...



#14 GeneralSynopsis

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Posted 24 September 2016 - 05:47

I can confirm that the cartridges that come with the Hero 359 are compatible with Parker pens. I have one at present in a Parker 15 with no problems.


--“Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.” 
― Giordano Bruno

 


#15 bob_hayden

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Posted 24 September 2016 - 09:59

@Jamerelbe  It's interesting that they fit other Hero pens.  Some of the vendors on eBay say it fits ONLY the 359, and of course the label on the cartridge package says "359".  For the converters, I just found that they fit in "some" Parker pens;-)  My experience with using parts from Brand A with Brand B is that it's a sometimes sort of thing.  The size of these Hero cartridges can be a problem in getting them into some Parker bodies.  The size and shape seems to be the same as Hero, Jinhao, and Gullor Chinese international cartridges which are all longer than Western short internationals and shorter than international longs.   The 359s are advertised by one seller as holding 5 ml.  I do not know what the more usual internationals hold.  All these Chinese cartridges have a plug in the back end about 1/4 inch (7mm) long that would reduce capacity, and I am not sure if the apparent ruggedness of the cartridge is due to thicker walls, which could also reduce capacity, or to a stiffer plastic.  Either way the downside is that I can't squeeze the cartridges enough to get ink glowing when it is uncooperative.

 

@GeneralSynopsis  As per my response above, all we know is that the cartridges work in some Parker pens;-)  They will not fit inside my Vectors and fall out of the Frontier I tried.  But your experience does seem to confirm that the opening matches Parker rather than international dimensions. 







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