The review is simultaneously posted at my blog here : Link
Ranga Handmade Pens is a brainchild of M.S. Pandurangan who himself is a master pen turner and all pens and pencils are made by him only. His son M.P. Kandan is doing great deeds by taking care of the business part of Ranga Handmade Pens. I must add that both him and his father are very humble and polite. I have organised few group buys on Fountain Pen Network for Ranga Pens and every-time the dealing with him have been very professional. He has never lapsed on the dates as far as his commitment and deliverables are concerned. But yes thats what my experience has been till date and I hope he continues do to the same.
Ranga Pens make use of ebonite and acrylic for pens and in-fact they are the first and one amongst two pen makers in India to offer Premium Ebonite. They have a dedicated eBay store where they sell not just Ranga Pens but also pens from other manufacturers from India like Wality, Oliver, Fellowship etc. which are all machine turned. The pens from Ranga are also stocked by Teri of Peyton Street Pens in USA with also some exclusive models.
The group buys on FPN have helped in acquiring lot of Ranga Pens. They have more than 10 models in their line-up :
- Model 4C
- Model 3
- Model 4CS
- Model 5
- Model 6
- Model 8
- Model 2c
- Model 2d
And I have already reviews one of the model which is Model 4C but this review is about one of the unique model in their line-up which is Bamboo.
Ranga Bamboo – Doing Rain Dance
Ranga Bamboo – Braving the Rain
Design : 05/05
The pen design resembles the natural bamboo with forged joints acting as nodes and parts between the two nodes acting as inter-nodes. The pen in review is the clip-less demonstrator in brushed version with polished finials.
Ranga Bamboo – In Demonstrator version
Ranga Bamboo – Asymmetrical inter-nodes provides it Natural character
All in all there are 5 nodes with smaller inter-nodes at cap and to me that provides it natural character. The finials, both top and bottom, are polished and are in conical dome shape.
Ranga Bamboo – Polished Conical Dome Shaped Finials
Once thing to be noticed is that the cap finial is smaller in length as compared to the barrel finial and the reason for that is to provide balance to the pen when writing so that it does not become top heavy.
Ranga Bamboo – Different Length of finials with Barrel one being longer
The inter-nodes in the cap are smaller than what is on the barrels in length. The cap also has breather hole and this version is clip-less so it looks like one bamboo rod albeit in a different material.
Ranga Bamboo – Clip-less with breather hole
Ranga Bamboo Cap – Inner nib look and feel when pen is capped
The cap closes to form a node and it actually flushes with barrel as can be seen from picture above. There is minute drop between section and barrel as the cap flares at bottom where it meets the barrel. The grip section is polished and not in matte finish.
There is no branding anywhere on this pen. Below are the images of the pen showing pen capped and uncapped.
Ranga Bamboo – Capped
Ranga Bamboo – Uncapped
It is superbly crafted pen with a very unique bamboo style pen like no other. And I believe the pen is worth the price it commands. The pen is also available in different ebonite and acrylic materials which must be around 30 plus in nos. So one has lot of options to get the pen in his particular colour and finish liking. Kudos to Ranga for the superb design.
Built & Construction : 04/05
The pen has matte finish which is executed very well and transition from matte finish to polished finials is sublime though they are not perfect but its close.
Ranga Bamboo – Matte Finish barrel to Polished Finials
Earlier I thought that the finials could be made symmetrical in length but part of the reason to do that was to keep the pen balanced while writing without increasing the length of cap. But then I thought otherwise, this asymmetry is what gives it natural character.
The cap opens in 4 turns and threads are very well crafted and are not at all sharp. The grip section as mentioned is also very well polished. Also I must add that the polished end of the finials are highly polished and very neat without any lathe marks visible.
Ranga Bamboo – Polished Section with neat threads
I applied silicon grease on the nib unit which you can see from the image above as I eyedropper-ed the pen.
The finish, the grooves, the material quality are all top notch. However one thing i want to mention is the the material thickness decreases at the cap lip and must be handled very well as there is no band to protect any kind of crack.
This is a handmade pen completely and is a “WOW” product at this price point.
Balance & Size : 4.5/05
The cap posts but only just and that too not very securely. I think it is not required as it makes the absurdly large and uncomfortable also the pen itself is very long at 135 mm when uncapped.
The pen is very well balanced with just a little more weight in front end of a nib unit.
Ranga Bamboo – Writing with Cap Unposted
Ranga Bamboo – Writing with Cap Posted
The pen is light in weight with no metal parts used anywhere on the pen. Images below show the weight of pen with cap and without cap :
Ranga Bamboo – Weight of Pen (inked) with Cap
Ranga Bamboo – Weight of Pen (inked) without Cap
Few specification of the pen are as follows:
- Length of pen (closed) – 145 mm
- Length of pen (open and unposted) – 135 mm (including nib)
- Length of Grip Section – 34 mm
- Maximum Dia of Cap – 15 mm
- Maximum Dia of Barrel – 15 mm
- Minimum Dia of Barrel Section – 12.5 mm
- Maximum Dia of Grip Section – 11 mm
- Minimum Dia of Grip Section – 10 mm
- Weight of Pen with Cap – 24 gms (inked)
- Weight of Pen without Cap – 18.75 gms (inked)
Below pictures show the comparison of pen with other pens:
Pen Comparison – Capped (Top View) : Pilot 78G vs Lamy Safari vs Ranga Bamboo
Pen Comparison – Uncapped and Posted (Top View) : Pilot 78G vs Lamy Safari vs Ranga Bamboo
Pen Comparison – Capped (Lateral View) : Pilot 78G vs Lamy Safari vs Ranga Bamboo
Pen Comparison – Uncapped & Posted (Lateral View) : Pilot 78G vs Lamy Safari vs Ranga Bamboo
One thing of worthy mention here is that the grip section long and comfortable and makes this pen as gem of a writer for long writing sessions.
Nib : 05/05
The pen comes with variety of #6 size nib options like JoWo EF, F, M , B, 1.1, & 1.5 and Schmidt F, M, & B for CC mechanism which is a threaded screw in one and also can be used as an eyedropper too and other nib options are Ambitious and Bock (conklin imprinted) but these are only for eye dropper version of pens.
The nib that I took was the dual tone Bold point JoWo nib which is screw in nib unit with plastic high finned nib and it performed flawless out of the box with welcome feedback. It is a juicy firm nib and writes wet.
Ranga Bamboo – JoWo Nib – Bold Point
Ranga Bamboo – Nib with Rain droplets
I sometimes wonder why I need gold nib when this nib performs so well.
Ink Filling Mechanism: 05/05
The ink is filled via converter and cartridge can be also used. But real fun lies in using this pen as a eyedropper and seeing the ink sloshing inside.
Ranga Bamboo – Used as eyedropper
Ink capacity around 4ml if used as an eyedropper. The converter that comes with pen is Schmidt K5 and has capacity of 0.6 ml.
One thing to be noted is that before you use it as an eye dropper do apply silicone grease on threads of barrel and also on nib unit threads.
Below is the handwritten sample and review of the pen :
Ranga Bamboo – Handwritten Review – Page 01
Ranga Bamboo – Handwritten Review – Page 02
Ranga Bamboo – Handwritten Review – Page 03
Ranga Bamboo – Handwritten Review – Page 04
Conclusion : 23.5/25
I pen is available in group buy at FPN for US$85 which is a steal considering it is handmade pen and it is a unique design. The pen is more of an artefact from India and is recommended to users who want something more from a pen.
What I Like:
- Unique Design
- Quality Finish
- Good Balance and Size
- Good Ink Capacity
- Nib Options
- Material Options
What I don’t Like:
- Cap Material is thin at Lip
- Little expensive
HOW TO BUY
The pen can be bought via occasional group buys organised at group buy and at the moment when I am writing this review the Group Buy is Active. LINK
Pen can also be bought from following places :
For more reviews you can check my blog here : LINK