I remember that when I first got into fountain pens, I was fascinated by Delta's trademark orange and black Dolcevita line. As I couldn't afford any of them at the time, I got chinese Naranja fountain pen instead. It wasn't bad and for some time my interest in getting real Dolcevita waned. With time my collection grew and my taste shifted first toward vintage japanese pens and then modern german and italian pens. When I say italian it actually means Visconti and Omas (if one Omas can be called a collection). Somehow Delta's design lost appeal to me and it couldn't stand a chance with other market competitors. Especially that sometime along the way I had small Delta Grafitti pen in which the nib was truly bad (dry, scratchy).
However I'm curious person and I enjoy trying new things and doing test rides. Some time ago, while scrolling through eBay, I've spotted
reasonably priced Delta and decided it would be nice to finally try a pen from Dolcevita line. I would like to share my thoughts about it with you.
The pen comes in nice, stylish box. It's black, well crafted and of reasonable dimensions. Inside the box are papers (warranty and adverts), fountain pen and black ink.
Dolcevita Federico can be bought in a multitude of finishes. Mine is Deep Sea. I'm not biggest fan of blue color but I find the barrel finish rather pleasant to eye.
The pen seems large and chunky, mainly due to big diameter. As a result the nib looks small compared to the pen. I firmly believe the nib on this one should be bigger. The cap is slightly thinner on the top and grows fatter towards the ring. The barrel itself starts thin next to the nib an gets thicker at the junction to the blind cap that hides the piston knob.
I don't like small pens, so in theory I should enjoy this bulky body. But I don't - for me the diameter is too big. Length is perfect but this pen is too robust to my taste and, truth to be told, to my small hands. Section is short and there's irritating steop close to the nib. Aestetically speaking I definitely prefer Visconti or Aurora pens but I can see why some people may find this design appealing.
The pen feels solid in the hand. It's made of thick resin that feels substantial and durable.
The only issue I have with this pen concerns the threads between cap and the barrel - they're short and don’t fit together very smoothly. It can be just impression - the cap is tightly screwed on the barrel but the pprocess of screwing feels a little off - as if there was some skipping. I expected smoother mechanism from Delta.
The clip is functional and has a ball at the end, which turns, for ease of placing in a pocket, apparently.
The attention to detail makes for nice presentation. Personally though I'm not that fonf of font used to show the name of the model. It's not really elegant.
I enjoy steel nibs so the fact that Dolcevita comes with steel one doesn't bother me at all. The nib is small compared to the pen and it's my only cryticism. Medium steel nib is very smooth and wrote perfectly well out of the box. No skipping, no misaligned tins. The flow is pleasantly rich, but not excessive and remains steady during long writing sessions without interruptions.
It's not rocket science but it's well engineered. As expected for this price tag, the pen is a cartridege-converter and it accepts standard international cartridges. Happily it's a little more sophisticated than that - it's so called faux piston - filler (I don't know if that's the correct term but I've seen it used over the internet). After unscreving blind cap on the end of the barrel you expose the knob of the converter. You can draw up ink by twisting this knob without having to unscrew the barrel. Pretty cool.
Delta Dolcevita Federico is a sizable pen, too big for me, but it's not caricatural or overly flashy. The writing experience can be pleasant (the nib is pretty great) but due to section diameter not everyone will be able to enjoy it, especially during longer writing sessions. All in all this pen can be considered as nice introduction into Delta world.