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Pilot 78G+ = The New 78G?

pilot 78g 78g+ japan china new discontinued inexpensive

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68 replies to this topic

#61 Mongoosey

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Posted 17 December 2018 - 20:23

 

I couldn't agree more. That step down to the section was literally painful for me, so I eventually gave it away (after putting a different nib on it so I could keep the original haha). The original 78G was one of my first fountain pens and still has the absolute perfect section for me. 

 

That's what I like to hear.  I've used other pens with similar dimensions and weight and have quite enjoyed them...

 

...and that demonstrator :wub: .

 

I've been looking for an inexpensive EDC-like pen with a good nib for quite sometime, and since I already have a good nib to swap in I think this one will suffice quite merrily :happy: .  Very excited.



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#62 Mongoosey

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 23:29

Received my Demonstrator PIlot 78g+ Medium today and inked it with Noodler's Heart of Darkness.  Here are my first impressions:

IMG_0033.JPG

 

Pros:

  • Writing performance not sacrificed:  Uses same nib-feed-converter system and it wrote well OOTB
  • Nib was smooth and aligned OOTB, and that's a big "+", IMO.
  • As with past 78g's I imagine, the size is small, but well designed:  Posts comfortably, but still can be used unposted.
  • Section is on the narrow side, especially for larger hands.  You're getting into Pencil territory at its narrowest, but the flare at the end of the section helps and since there is no shelf transitioning from the section to the body it's easier to hold higher up.
  • Threads are unobtrusive, IMO.
  • Clear Demonstrator is nice, is a potential eyedropper, and has an interesting looking.

Cons

  • Size is quite small for larger hands, especially the section.
  • It is a light pen and may disappear in your hand unposted, unfortunately.  Eyedroppering would help this, but I'd highly recommend silicon grease and an O-ring.
  • The Con40 Converter!!  The photos show the Maximum I could fill the pen out of a bottle, and it's already a small converter!  They basically made a converter that requires a syringe fill. It does have agitators, but that doesn't make up for this pervasive defect or rather laziness of the design and I think consumers deserve better.
  • Doesn't come with a cartridge so a new fountain pen user would be forced to stick with the converter and find a bottle of ink instead of having the cartridge available, which they could fill with a syringe.
  • The material isn't the same quality I've seen out of Pilot pens, but I won't knock it down completely yet, but for this price I'd expect something of higher quality.  At least you still get a descent nib with good inkflow.
  • Doesn't have the inner cap you see in the Pilot Explorer and Prera, and I believe the Metro, though I may be wrong (I don't have mine on me now).

Comparison photos to the Plot Prera:

  • The design of the Prera is simply much better and I got it for only $10 more.
  • The section is more comfortable IMO and more universal to preferences.
  • Prera does require posting to use IMO, where the 78g+ does not.

IMG_0034.JPG

IMG_0035.JPG

Conclusion: 

 

  • It's an OK pen with trade-offs, but at least the nib is solid OOTB.
  • It's good for smaller hands, but does get uncomfortable with larger hands where it would require posting.
  • You get a quality writing experience you'd expect from pilot, but with standards sacrificed on the materials, the converter, yet at the same price I've paid for Pilot pens in the past that didn't sacrifice those qualities.
  • I'd almost call it a devolution (de-evolution) seeing Pilot go backwards.  They rehashed an old, yet agreeable design, and downgraded it.
  • Do I recommend it?  If it suits your preferences, yes, because it still writes well OOTB, but I'd recommend to use logic in your decision.
  • Do I like it?  Somewhat, but it's a tad small for me.  For me to use comfortably I'd have to use it posted, and that's where my Prera out performs this pen, plus I have a Pilot Custom 74-M on the way.

Edited by Mongoosey, 19 December 2018 - 23:31.


#63 TruthPil

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Posted 20 December 2018 - 03:21

Excellent review, Mongoosey!

I agree with your thoughts. When I said before that these pens are a good size, I should have mentioned that I have small hands and stubby fingers. Even then, I still tend to hold these up the section near the threads.

Since I live in the same country where these are now made, they are also cheaper than abroad (around US$10 if I hunt around), so they are a good deal for me. That being said, these are still probably the cheapest way to get a Pilot Japanese Fine nib on a pen that looks formal enough for business situations. Otherwise, the Kakuno is probably the best deal for the nib. I agree that the Prera is a better built pen, but where I am they cost three to four times as much as the 78G+. Prera is a great EDC pen and even pretty pocket safe.

You are going to love the 74 M. It's bigger and has a lusciously wet nib.

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#64 Mongoosey

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Posted 20 December 2018 - 04:50

Excellent review, Mongoosey!

I agree with your thoughts. When I said before that these pens are a good size, I should have mentioned that I have small hands and stubby fingers. Even then, I still tend to hold these up the section near the threads.

Since I live in the same country where these are now made, they are also cheaper than abroad (around US$10 if I hunt around), so they are a good deal for me. That being said, these are still probably the cheapest way to get a Pilot Japanese Fine nib on a pen that looks formal enough for business situations. Otherwise, the Kakuno is probably the best deal for the nib. I agree that the Prera is a better built pen, but where I am they cost three to four times as much as the 78G+. Prera is a great EDC pen and even pretty pocket safe.

You are going to love the 74 M. It's bigger and has a lusciously wet nib.

 

For $10 the 78g+ is more reasonable, that's a good point.

 

I find the lower end pilot pens to be a frustrating line up that coaxes me to try their more expensive models :doh: :

  • They either look like toys despite their adult dimensions (Kakuno)
  • or look adult, but have smaller dimensions (Metro)
  • I like the Prera, but it really needs to be posted to be used, 
  • The Explorer comes close, but I don't like the plastic clip and everything being plastic and the section doesn't agree with me, so...

Pilot 74 it is :doh: .  That I have used before so I know what to expect B) .

------------------

I wished they made an "Adult" Kakuno.



#65 TruthPil

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Posted 20 December 2018 - 05:23

I wished they made an "Adult" Kakuno.


+1 Judging by the similar section, I wonder if the Explorer was meant to be just that. Even with the happy face nib, perhaps because of it in some cases, my Kakuno nib sees a lot more use than the pen it came in.

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#66 Mongoosey

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Posted 20 December 2018 - 06:46

+1 Judging by the similar section, I wonder if the Explorer was meant to be just that. Even with the happy face nib, perhaps because of it in some cases, my Kakuno nib sees a lot more use than the pen it came in.

 

I agree.  I think it was.

 

My discontent with the Explorer is more on the preferential side since the dimensions are indeed more "adult" and it does function well, has an inner cap, has a smooth snap cap, and can fit a con70.

 

For me, that 1/2 hourglass shape prevents me from holding it up higher because the angle of the slope is steeper closer to where the section meets the body and that forces my fingers into a more exaggerate pincer grip/angle I find uncomfortable.  And since there is a slight shelf there, though small, it does exaggerate/increase that angling even more.  The section design is what did it for me.

 

I prefer the straighter taper like that of the 78g+, Kakuno, Prera, and especially a taper that flares to lip.

 

But I was also disappointed that there's no metal clip.  It did make it feel cheap and added to a "plastic-y" feel of the pen as a whole, which did have a "child-like" feel to it.

 

For me, the Kakuno is one of the best fitting Pilot pens I've used, especially with regards to the section, but it's also one of the most toyish, as well.  I would love to see them adapt that concept further away from the younger crowd.

 

Would I recommend the Explorer?  Sure, if it fits your preferences, and if one likes an hourglass shaped section I think the Explorer would be a lovely possibility in terms of comfort.


Edited by Mongoosey, 20 December 2018 - 06:47.


#67 MichaelHall

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 19:56

I fell in love with the Pilot 78G+ clear from YouTube videos, and it is equally impressive in my hand. I was waffling between buying it or an almost half as expensive Wing Sung 659 (which is a clone of the 78G). I decided against the 659 because of the threads at the top end of the cap, which ironically it turns out the 78G+ also has. Not a coincidence, since the 659 is a copy.

 

I didn't mind the Con-40 at all, but I habitually filled it with a syringe the first time, so I never learned the horrors of filling it normally. And there was no second time, since then I threw it away in favor of eyedroppering. I used silicone grease but no o-rings. No leaks.

 

fpn_1575484259__pilot_78g_with_transpare

 

In the photo, the pen is feed up, of course. I've replaced the Pilot feed with a transparent feed. It's catching the light just right, and actually often just looks black - or clear.

 

You can see in the writing samples that eyedroppering makes it modestly wetter, but the generic transparent feed makes it write much dryer/thinner, close to the Wing Sung 698 0.5mm "F". I think this is the reason that the Wing Sung 659/698 0.5mm nibs are labeled "F", whereas low end Pilot 0.5mm nibs are labeled "M", even though they are reportedly made on the same machinery. I'll know for sure when I try a Wing Sung feed in the 78G+.

 

This 0.5mm nib writes very, very smoothly, of course. You really have to think twice before buying a fountain pen other than a low end Pilot or Wing Sung 698. Pilot claims these nibs are 22K gold plated, and I believe them, as opposed to laughing off whatever the Chinese claim. The gold plating isn't going to do much for you except for looks, of course.

 

The main disadvantage of the 78G+ is its light weight. It is just 13g, either empty with converter or full as an eyedropper. I really notice the difference in weight between it and the similarly sized Moonman S1, which is not exactly heavy at 18g eyedroppered. (The S1 and 78G+ make a dashing pair, by the way.) I considered adding titanium, but first I'll try glass beads, which are on the way. The other thing I'm hoping from the glass beads is that they'll lighten my dark colors enough that I can see the color easily in the barrel.

 

I don't mind the lack of an inner cap. That eyedroppered pen is my daily carry in temperature extremes, and the cap stays clean. Actually, I prefer no inner cap. Having no inner cap definitely looks better with this demonstrator.

 

The ink is a 50-50 mix of Sailor Storia Balloon Green and De Atramentis Document Urban Grey.

 



#68 TruthPil

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 06:37

Thanks for your detailed impressions, MichaelHall!

 

I agree that the 78G and it's new incarnation 78G+ are great inexpensive pens. I never had any trouble with drying out due to the lack of an inner cap either. I also prefer lighter pens so the lack of heft never bothers me.


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#69 MichaelHall

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 12:28

Oh, I didn't realize that inner caps were to prevent drying. I thought they were for splatter protection, which doesn't make sense now that I think about it. However, yes, my Pilot 78G+ has never skipped or dried out, despite lacking an inner cap. Hmm, now I'm tempted to remove the inner cap from my Wing Sung 698 demonstrator.

 

The 78G+'s lack of weight doesn't seem to affect its ability to write with zero pressure, I guess because it's well-balanced (the cap is light). The lack of weight just bothers me when switching between a 78G+ and any of my other pens.







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