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Inexpensive Pen Suggestion?

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29 replies to this topic

#1 Bklyn

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 03:36

I seem to have little problem identifying expensive pens but I am struggling to find inexpensive ones. 

 

I am looking for 2 or 3 inexpensive pens, (Under say, $40.00 each) that I can play with in terms of some inks that are said to be a bit high maintenance or will stain clear parts and I do not want to do it with a more expensive pen.

 

I am open to any filling system but I suspect I will end up with a converter which is fine. Not to be picky but if possible, I would love the pen to be large and thick with a grip that will not feel skinny. (This might seem like a lot for which to ask but my guess is that if you can build a smaller and thinner pen like a MB 146 for under 40 bucks, you can make a thicker and larger pen like a MB 149 for the same dollars. A #6 nib to come with the pen would be lovely.)

 

Any ideas on sites or specific pens I might explore would be just great.

 

Thanks all...

 

 


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#2 fly_us

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 03:48

$40? Noodler Ahab and Lamy Safari/Vista/Al Star/Logo are the some first names i think about. Not much pens could compare with them in that price range. Or you could get cheaper one like Pilot MR, Pelikan Pelikano. If  you willing to spend some more dollars, there are Pilot Prera or TWSBI 580.



#3 Tresconik

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 03:53

If you're fine with eyedroppers, go Indian. Otherwise go Chinese.



#4 Sandy Fry

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 09:42

Jinhao 159....same dimensions as MB 149 and all for less than $5.00!!!

 

David


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#5 Maurizio

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 10:55

Noodler's Ahab if you want fat barrel.

Otherwise, get a Pilot Metropolitan.

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#6 r3tic

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 13:23

I'll second the Pilot Metropolitan. I picked one up a couple of weeks ago. It is my first fountain pen but I have not had any problems with it at all. I plan on picking up another one and replacing its nib with an italic nib from a Pilot Plumix. The Plumix btw is only about $8.


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#7 Randal6393

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 14:57

Would like to know what nib -- EF, F, M, B, Stub -- you want. Some pens are limited in the nibs available. The Ahab is easily re-nibbed and # 6 nibs are available from a wide variety of vendors. Another possible is the FPR (fountainpenrevolution.com) pen. Variety of sizes, piston fillers, converters, eyedroppers, made from plastics, acrylics, ebonite, and so on. Range from very basic to pretty decent.

 

Best of luck,


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#8 Frank C

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 15:18

I use Platinum Preppies testing ink. They cost about about $4. USD. The nibs aren't tipped, so they won't last forever, but I have yet to wear one out. You can add a converter for about $8. (I know, the converter costs twice as much as the pen!) You can buy a little silicone grease and an "O" ring and use them as eyedroppers. You can empty out one of the proprietary cartridges and refill it with any ink with a syringe. All these items are available from Goulet Pens.

 

I keep a few Preppies in my locker at the hospital. When someone comments on my fountain pens, I offer them a Preppy and a little lesson on fountain pen use. One man said the Preppy worked better than a $100 pen he bought on the internet. He returned the $100 dollar pen. 

 

Good luck with ink testing. I always have a Preppy or three filled with Bay State Blue, Kung Te Chung, etc. 


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#9 mooshi

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 15:47

+1 for Pilot Metropolitan.  I've yet to find a Pilot that doesn't perform well.  :)



#10 bardharlock

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 16:01

Pilot Metropolitan ~ $15

Jinhao 159           ~ $12

TWSBI Mini          ~ $50

                             --------

                             ~ $77

It averages to less than $40 per pen which allows some wiggle room to add an extra nib or two for the Jinhao and TWSBI and nets you a piston filler in the end. The nib options would allow you to experiment with the inks in finer sizes as well as broad and stubbed nibs. Both of the less expensive pens come with converters but would also allow the convenience of cartridges. Not bad altogether.


"In this world... you must be oh, so smart, or oh, so pleasant. Well for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant."

#11 GAtkins

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 16:56

Pilot Metropolitan ~ $15

Jinhao 159           ~ $12

TWSBI Mini          ~ $50

                             --------

                             ~ $77

It averages to less than $40 per pen which allows some wiggle room to add an extra nib or two for the Jinhao and TWSBI and nets you a piston filler in the end. The nib options would allow you to experiment with the inks in finer sizes as well as broad and stubbed nibs. Both of the less expensive pens come with converters but would also allow the convenience of cartridges. Not bad altogether.

 

<$26



#12 ancalagon

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 17:06

The Jinhao 159 fits your requirements like a glove.  It fits #6 nibs (although a replacement #6 nib would be an improvement, the nib it comes with is quite decent), it's fat (its dimensions are modeled after the MB 149), and it's cheap.  Someone mentioned finding them for $5, and you may be able to do that, but I've seen them around $10-12, and I've seen replacement #6 nibs around $10-15.  

 

They recently came out with 2 new colors, so you can get them in yellow, orange, and black now.  



#13 edebill

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 18:36

Jinhao 159....same dimensions as MB 149 and all for less than $5.00!!!

 

David

 

Pair it with a Goulet or MonteVerde nib in your preferred size if you don't like their chunky mediums.



#14 bardharlock

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 18:40

 

<$26

Yes, I have a calculator as well. :) The OP stated he wanted two to three pens under $40 each. I was merely making a generalized statement that even though one of the pens I listed was around $50 he was still coming in under his budget of less than $40 per pen. Thanks for being helpful, though!


"In this world... you must be oh, so smart, or oh, so pleasant. Well for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant."

#15 j.a.j.

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 19:09

If you are looking for big pens i would suggest buying first only two pens. One heavy and one light.

Definetly get a 159. You can get some medium quality #6 nibs from xfountainpens for few dollars / piece to try different nib widths. 159 is a very heavy pen. I have had a 159 with xfountainpens 0.6 stub inked for more than a year. But only 3 of the 5 159s i have bought worked straight oit of the box.

Enonite is a lovely material for large pens. Light and warm to the touch. Ranga (contact user mpkandan) and Asapens have some very nice large ebonite pens. Both eyedropper and cartridge. I concider my Indian pens to be (together with 159) best value for money.

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#16 lisadan

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 19:24

Baoer 388. Nice looking pen (Parker Sonnet clone) that is easy to take apart for cleaning. Comes with a converter, and accepts International cartridges.  Cost less than $5.00 (you can usually get a 5 pack for under $20 on eBay, shipping included).  Seems to come only with M nib.


Dan


#17 delano

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Posted 23 May 2015 - 19:50

I just recently received a purchase I made on eBay for six Jinhao pens for $23 shipped. Never had Jinhao pens before, and I am impressed with their quality.  For less than $4 a pen, you could use all the high maintenance ink you want without much worry.



#18 Bklyn

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Posted 24 May 2015 - 03:04

The Jinhao 159 fits your requirements like a glove.  It fits #6 nibs (although a replacement #6 nib would be an improvement, the nib it comes with is quite decent), it's fat (its dimensions are modeled after the MB 149), and it's cheap.  Someone mentioned finding them for $5, and you may be able to do that, but I've seen them around $10-12, and I've seen replacement #6 nibs around $10-15.  

 

They recently came out with 2 new colors, so you can get them in yellow, orange, and black now.  

This is great information. My thanks to you all of for taking the time to respond.


Anyone like Ray Bradbury? Please read "The Laurel and Hardy Love Affair" if you have about 12 minutes. 

 

You will not forget this wonderful gem that is largely obscure and sadly, forgotten. http://bit.ly/1DZtL4g

 


#19 Bklyn

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Posted 24 May 2015 - 03:06

If you are looking for big pens i would suggest buying first only two pens. One heavy and one light.

Definetly get a 159. You can get some medium quality #6 nibs from xfountainpens for few dollars / piece to try different nib widths. 159 is a very heavy pen. I have had a 159 with xfountainpens 0.6 stub inked for more than a year. But only 3 of the 5 159s i have bought worked straight oit of the box.

Enonite is a lovely material for large pens. Light and warm to the touch. Ranga (contact user mpkandan) and Asapens have some very nice large ebonite pens. Both eyedropper and cartridge. I concider my Indian pens to be (together with 159) best value for money.

This is wonderful. I know little of ebonite but will look it up and try to see what I can learn.


Anyone like Ray Bradbury? Please read "The Laurel and Hardy Love Affair" if you have about 12 minutes. 

 

You will not forget this wonderful gem that is largely obscure and sadly, forgotten. http://bit.ly/1DZtL4g

 


#20 penxade

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Posted 24 May 2015 - 23:25

I am suffering the same problems.

 

As far as I know, in your geographical location the popular options would be:

 

Lamy Safari

Parker Frontier

Pilot Metropolitan

Platinum Cool

Platinum Plaisir.

Parker IM

Pilot 78G

Sailor Ace

 

In my geographical location Lamy is cheaper than Pilot Mr.

 

Other pens in my location that may be around yours at a decent price:

 

"Platignum" not Platinum, Studio. Incompatible with most converters and only comes with medium though.

Platignum Vibe if you really want a more aesthetic version.

 

Then there are Chinese pens like Jinhao, Baoer, Hero etc. I think they're okay if you don't get lemons but if you don't then you're a fortunate guy.

 

I still need to decide on an inexpensive but functional pen too.


Edited by penxade, 24 May 2015 - 23:27.






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