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A Short Take On The Rotring Esprit

esprit rotring anodized aluminum green tourmaline

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#1 sannidh

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Posted 08 September 2015 - 13:41

The Esprit was my first cartridge filler fountain pen, brought to me by one of our dadas (respectable like an elder brother) belonging to the same native place. It was his store from where we (as students) used to buy notebooks, refills and other inexpensive fountain pens of pilot, pentel and ball points pens of mitsubishi. Those days, there were no internet shops and bays and of course no money :P. I always used to think of how awesome his connects were, coming from a small city where I oncer grew up and he used to narrate numerous tales of his adventurous pen trips to Delhi & Calcutta (Now Kolkata). Feel I owe him quite a bit of my fountain pen addiction.

 

Another recent review by Vig reminded me of my rotring Esprit, resting inside one of the drawers. Of course this is not the old one from 1998-99. I have bought this one as a souvenir :)

 

Thought I would post a review of this one. Link to blogpost is below:

 

Short Review of the Rotring Esprit

 

For those of you who like slim and light pens, the Esprit is really quite a nice pen. And it happily fits your MTN Pen holder. The Esprit was released as the next avatar to the numbered models, rotring 400 in this case. It was a finite displacement for the haloed red-ring from the section of 400 to its cap end, apart from the flattened ends. The fountain pen comes with a standard steel nib. A corresponding rollerball, ballpoint and a mechanical pencil were also released. The smaller sized telescoping Esprit Mini series came later and became Parker Esprit, soon after acquisition. Lamy CP1 pen does bear some common characteristics with the Esprit.

 

DESIGN (5/6)

 

The Esprit comes in anodised aluminium make with steel and plastic fittings. Till now I have seen two finishes of this - Tourmaline Green and Black. The minis came with a lot more colour options.

DSC_6148.jpg

The pen is a slender cylinder with a lovely red ring at the finial. Once you pull the cap, it does come off with an audible click, and you have a ribbed metallic section. The grip section has a tapered end, and there rests the rotring steel nib.

DSC_6150.jpg

The cap is light with a snap-on mechanism. A tension fit clip starts with the trademarked red ring at the finial. The clip carries the rotring brand name.

cap.jpg

 

FILLING SYSTEM (5/6)

 

It’s an international cartridge converter system. The construction is good with a steel insert inside the section and another runs the threads for the aluminium barrel.

DSC_6164.jpg

A Schmidt/FCD or a rotring converter will fit snugly into the section vis-a-vis other standard international converters like Waterman. 

DSC_6168.jpg

 

NIB - ALL THAT MATTERS (5/6)

 

The nib is made of stainless steel and comes in a standard rotring design. I came across only F & M widths for this pen. All these nibs have been wet and generally smooth.

A no-frills design of the nib sans any breather hole gives it a characteristic industrial look, besides the metallic make of the pen. 

DSC_6177.jpg

The branding and nib specifications are imprinted on either sides of the nib.

DSC_6181.jpg

A standard black plastic feed sans any fins and a big feeder hole define its minimalism. 

DSC_6185.jpg

 

PHYSICS OF IT (4/6) – RELATIVELY SPEAKING

 

The pen is light and slim. You can post the pen as well and it does not feel any more heavier than 15g. The grip section tapers away from the barrel cross section as it becomes relatively thinner. I  feel that I am used to thicker sections for quite some time now.

  • Uncapped Length ~ 12.7 cm
  • Posted Length ~ 17.3 cm
  • Nib Leverage ~ 1.6 cm

Uncapped and posted pictures of the Esprit beside a ruler run below for your reference. 

physics.jpg

 

ECONOMIC VALUE(6/6)

 

I have no idea of its original retail price. I had bought the pen at a cost of USD 12 off ebay. Since it has been now discontinued, some stationery stores in Mumbai carry at least a few pieces of Esprit or a similar looking 400 model. 

 

OVERALL (5/6)

 

This steel nib has a hint of feedback with a nice wet flow. The medium nib is stiff and does not have any line variation among horizontal and vertical strokes. These wet lines take almost 35 secs to dry a wet Diamine majestic blue on MD paper. And I find some of the fine nibs running as wide as the mediums. 

DSC_6194.jpg

Thank you for going through the review.

You can find some more pen and paraphernalia reviews here.

 

REFERENCES

 

rOtring Timeline

Tiku

600 series

Newell Rubbermaid Inc

Rotring 400


Edited by soniknitr, 08 September 2015 - 15:23.

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#2 vig2432

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Posted 08 September 2015 - 15:30

Thanks for bumping up my review of the Esprit. It is a very nice pen. The price you paid also is slightly on the higher side. I remember it being sold for 400-500inr last year. Now this pen is becoming popular. To me, this pen has more value than a Lamy Safari


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#3 Arieut

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Posted 08 September 2015 - 16:05

The nib without the breather hole looks so cool. Great review!

#4 sannidh

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Posted 09 September 2015 - 05:27

Thanks for bumping up my review of the Esprit. It is a very nice pen. The price you paid also is slightly on the higher side. I remember it being sold for 400-500inr last year. Now this pen is becoming popular. To me, this pen has more value than a Lamy Safari

 

Actually I paid more than 5 times the street price. I found out later, that it's available in Crawford market for 150/piece  :yikes:

Though I did not buy any more, I agree with you it's quite a nice pen esp for those who like cross and other slim pens  :)


Edited by soniknitr, 09 September 2015 - 05:32.

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#5 sannidh

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Posted 09 September 2015 - 05:32

The nib without the breather hole looks so cool. Great review!

Thanks Arieut :)


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#6 Venemo

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 20:24

What's the orange ink you used for the title of your handwritten review?



#7 sannidh

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 02:36

What's the orange ink you used for the title of your handwritten review?

it's noodler's apache sunset ..


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#8 jekostas

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 05:12

I have an Esprit in my collection, a fine point in black.  It's very much a "do what it says on the box" kind of pen.  It's not flashy, it's not going to turn heads but damned if it isn't an immensely reliable writer.



#9 katerchen

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 05:30

Love mine. Bought it from an ebay seller in India. From what you say, I overpaid ... but meh. It was worth the expense.

 

The seals on this pen are perfect. When left alone, even for weeks, I see no appreciable loss of ink in the converter and the pen starts right back up.

 

Their Medium though is anything but. More like a F/EF.

 

-k



#10 pankaj

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 06:46

 Sonik :

 

Your reviews are compelling. So insightful. This reminds me of what Vincent Laforet, the famous commercial photographer in Los Angles in his book " Visual Stories " says :

 

" I photograph something as if I have discovered it for the first time. And if I have photographed it before, I find it a way to see it as I've never seen it before ".

 

The Esprit is a great functional utility pen. Totally agree. But I never knew the Crawford Market blister pack pen is a mean machine ! or its really your ingenious way of presentation !  

 

Still wondering.. 

 

Congrats. Thank you for such an interesting reading. 

 

BTW : Your chess board (?) back drop is as classic as Hari's mediation mat :)


Edited by pankaj, 17 September 2015 - 06:51.


#11 pensnproses

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 10:55

Thanks for bumping up my review of the Esprit. It is a very nice pen. The price you paid also is slightly on the higher side. I remember it being sold for 400-500inr last year. Now this pen is becoming popular. To me, this pen has more value than a Lamy Safari



Agreed. Espirit to me is a much better pen than Lamy Safari.
Regards,
Pratik

#12 sannidh

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 14:18

I have an Esprit in my collection, a fine point in black.  It's very much a "do what it says on the box" kind of pen.  It's not flashy, it's not going to turn heads but damned if it isn't an immensely reliable writer.

 

Very true. Never had a problem with any rotring nibs ever. 

 

Love mine. Bought it from an ebay seller in India. From what you say, I overpaid ... but meh. It was worth the expense.

 

The seals on this pen are perfect. When left alone, even for weeks, I see no appreciable loss of ink in the converter and the pen starts right back up.

 

Their Medium though is anything but. More like a F/EF.

 

-k

 

Thanks for the nice input.

I have kind of seen the transition :), once the demand picked up they increased the prices to 3 or 4 times.

Surprisingly, the same nib with F width lays a bolder line than this M .

IME the cores came with beautifully smooth steel nibs, albeit with a thicker line..


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#13 sannidh

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Posted 17 September 2015 - 14:48

..

 

BTW : Your chess board (?) back drop is as classic as Hari's mediation mat :)

 

Thank you Pankaj, for perhaps the 'best comment'  :rolleyes: on fpn.

Don't remember where, but must have come across Laforet's name in some Scott Kelby book. Thanks for quoting the legend, I could learn something about him today.

 

Feel crawford mkt, deserves a second chance when you come back here, the sole problem being you might end up with pens, you never planned or even imagined :)

 

Thanks for being the 1st independent fan of both my chess board & Hari's mat. The Japanese will have a strong claim for Hari's mat :P


Edited by soniknitr, 17 September 2015 - 14:48.

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