Hi All! Here comes a new "ruthless review". My ruthless reviews have a few peculiar features:
- Very strict. If a pen costs hundred of euros, no faults are allowed. A good pen gets a 60/100, a great pen an 80/100, an almost perfect one a 90/100. Only a divine pen can have above 90.
- Don't care about the box,
- Add a few peculiar criteria:
- Nib appearance;
- Usability in shirt pockets;
- Out-of-the-boxness, meaning to what extent a nib was perfect right after leaving the seller.
Jinhao 886 with M nib - red colour
Fantastic pictures of this pen in this very same colour are available from Vaibav Mehandiratta's blog. His photos are far better than I'll ever manage to get, so... enjoy his effort! I bought this pen because it's one of the few Chinese ones with an original design (that is, it's not a copy of someone else's efforts). With this in mind, I thought it would be nice to encourage Jinhao's creative efforts, and I was not expecting much. Instead....
1. Appearance and design: 10/10
This is really cool: the design is a sort of vintage/retro, reminds a bit of a FIAT 500 or a Smeg fridge. Very cute, absolutely awesome design work here!
2. Construction: 7/10
The metal looks sturdy, and tolerances are really tight. The section looks cheap, though, and so does the converter.
3. Quality of materials: 8/10
Everything looks OK, but the red and chrome coating is thin and seem likely to wear off very soon. I suggest to keep the pen in a pen holder.
4. Weight and dimensions: 7/10
Tiny, comfortable to use: the heft of the metal body makes the pen gravitate towards the paper. People with large hands will have issues, though.
5. Nib performance: 6/10
A no-nonsense M steel nib. Nothing special here: a bit of a hard starter and slightly on the dry side, and perhaps a bit "soulless", but it does its job.
6. Nib appearance: 7/10
Nice engravings, albeit banal.
7. "Out-of-the-boxness": 9/10
I expected much tweaking and fixing to get this to write: instead it wrote almost perfectly straight away! A little bit of tines spreading and it was good to go.
8. Filling system and maintenance: 2/10
Standard C/C system. The converter is a rip-off of a Lamy one, and this is unacceptable. Also, it leaks a tiny little bit... I guess I'll have to replace it soon.
9. Clip and usability with shirts: 8/10
The clip is maybe a bit too strong ( - 2 for this), but other than that, it's great, and the size makes it suitable for most shirt pockets.
10. Cost and value: 10/10
EUR 5 for the pen and shipping with registered mail?!?! This is incredible. If this is the "Chinese future", I'm very much looking forward to it!
Final mark: 74/100
It was difficult to be ruthless with this: I highly recommend this pen to anyone who wants a nice, well-built, well-designed, tiny little pen For EUR 5 you get the pen shipped from China, inclusive of a converter, and it writes! That's more than you can say of some EUR 300 pens you get from Western manufacturers. I'm now officially a huge fan of Jinhao.