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New Conklin Duragraph Merlot - $35 At Goulet Pens With Free Ink

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#21 Intensity

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 16:15

Mine arrived yesterday. True to reputation....the nib had baby's bottom so bad I could almost see it without a loupe, but the pen is otherwise perfect and gorgeous. (At first I thought the baby's bottom wasn't going to be a big deal but once I ran through the excess ink that was in the feed, it very much was.) 
 
I spent an hour or so getting the nib writing consistently, but now that I have, it's awesome. The medium writes more like a fine, in my opinion. The Sapphire ink that I chose is a beautiful but somber dark blue. Great for business I imagine.
 
So, I'm happy with the pen. I'd have been less happy if I had spent the usual asking price on it, but I knew Conklin had this reputation going in (and honestly thought I might swap the nib but it looks like I'm not going to have to.)
 
And, it's absolutely gorgeous. I love the flat-top design, and the color is stunning.


Interesting, I didn't know anything about "reputation" for baby's bottom, and in my case it's not a problem: my pen is a very wet writer and does not skip. I completely agree about the Medium writing like a Fine compared to some brands (like my Fine Lamy pens, or Jinhao).

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#22 KellyMcJ

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 16:28

I think I see a trend: seems like people have better luck with the stubs - most nib issues I hear about with Conklin seem to be with the F/M, while the stubs turn out better. Maybe the issue is with Conklins polishing of the tipping material on the non-stub nibs?

My theory will be tested whenever my 1.1 Merlot shows up in the mail...

 

I actually really suspect that Conklin may be finishing the nibs with heavy handed, inexperienced fountain pen users in mind. They have some softness (not much, but you can't climb mount everest with them) and mine was glass smooth with a pronounced baby's bottom.
 

If I'd have tried to use it with the same force I use with a ballpoint it would have been fantastic.

 

I've since gotten it writing beautifully, and wrote a letter to my pen pal with it- it's a very beautiful and comfortable pen to hold (though back heavy when posted) and well made (except for the finish on that nib). I'm quickly falling in love with it actually.



#23 KellyMcJ

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 16:29

Interesting, I didn't know anything about "reputation" for baby's bottom, and in my case it's not a problem: my pen is a very wet writer and does not skip. I completely agree about the Medium writing like a Fine compared to some brands (like my Fine Lamy pens, or Jinhao).

 

Conklin doesn't have a reputation for baby's bottom per se, but their nibs seem to be a (bleep) shoot. At least, from what I've read. (Except for their stubs which are apparently top notch.)



#24 DasKaltblut

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 15:21

Some more tidbits about this pen: It was a mistake created when they tried to make the purple nights color, and there were only 500 pens made.

 

I got mine the other day, and when I opened it, there was a pretty strong chemical smell from the cap...Letting it air out. My blue ice duragraph medium is really nice (no baby's bottom), so I'm looking forward to this stub.



#25 Intensity

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 16:05

Some more tidbits about this pen: It was a mistake created when they tried to make the purple nights color, and there were only 500 pens made.

 

I got mine the other day, and when I opened it, there was a pretty strong chemical smell from the cap...Letting it air out. My blue ice duragraph medium is really nice (no baby's bottom), so I'm looking forward to this stub.

 

Oh interesting!  I do really like the look of Purple Nights, but not sure if I'll be picking one up (unless it's also on a similar sale).  Trying to not have too-similar pens, with the exception of 3 Lamy pens that are more or less the same shape but different colors, because they have easily interchangeable nibs.

 

I wrote the same passage yesterday with different pens of fine and extra fine nib size, and also my Merlot Duragraph (medium).  To compare with better known nibs, my Medium Conklin writes just a tiny bit wider than Bock #5 Fine nib (Kaweco Perkeo), about the same as Lamy Safari Fine, wider than Safari Extra Fine.  Although it's also a wet-flow pen, so the ink line is also wider due to that.  I haven't tried it with a dry ink yet.  No baby's bottom on my unit.



#26 SteveID

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 20:33

All gone...
And the cynic in me suggest that the Duragraph is not worth more than $35 especially without a free bottle of ink.

It's unfortunate, really. That Cracked Ice looks nice, but not at that price.
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#27 inkstainedruth

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Posted 15 December 2017 - 21:12

Well, I just looked at the Merlot Duragraph again -- and I'm starting to rethink my initial impression.  Because it *is* one drop-dead gorgeous color....  Oh I am so good into talking myself into things....  :headsmack: 

This just went back on the wish list (good thing the list is not in any particular order -- I just delete things as they get acquired.  (Okay, much as I (bleep) and moan about technology, the computer has SOME uses...).  Of course, it might not be available when I decide to take the plunge, so this might all be a moot point....  And my ink wish list is still probably longer.  (I spent some time last night merging two shopping/want lists into one file).  Of course, the ink list is also now longer than it was ten minutes ago....  :blush: 

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#28 KellyMcJ

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 01:26

The Merlot duragraphs are all gone. :(

I really love the shape and size of this pen - it's great to hold and write with (I prefer unposted).

The chemical smell is common to some acrylic resins. It's nothing to worry about.

#29 Intensity

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 02:05

Hmm, mine doesn't smell like anything, just went to check it after seeing the posts.  Though if I uncap the pen, I guess there's a bit of a plasticky chemical smell inside the black cap, not sure how much of that is from the ink too (Diamine Syrah).


Edited by Intensity, 16 December 2017 - 02:05.


#30 DasKaltblut

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 02:18

Yeah I meant the inside of the black cap. Didn't notice that with the blue ice one so I was surprised.

#31 DasKaltblut

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 02:21

The Merlot duragraphs are all gone. :(


Yup. All 500 sold out.

#32 Ted A

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Posted 16 December 2017 - 16:37

All gone...
And the cynic in me suggest that the Duragraph is not worth more than $35 especially without a free bottle of ink.


I have to agree with you. I’ve liked the look of the Duragraph and when this sold before I could even have time to think about it I thought to look at some of the other colors, but not for what is now a 48% premium over the $35 price
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#33 Intensity

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 16:56

In case anyone is sad about missing the Merlot version, I've just got a confirmation from Goulet Pens that the Purple Nights variant is a regular color addition, not limited edition.  I know purple is not the same as burgundy, but it's a similar look pen otherwise (and I think it looks great in purple).



#34 DasKaltblut

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 17:46

In case anyone is sad about missing the Merlot version, I've just got a confirmation from Goulet Pens that the Purple Nights variant is a regular color addition, not limited edition.  I know purple is not the same as burgundy, but it's a similar look pen otherwise (and I think it looks great in purple).


Nice to hear because the purple nights are also sold out atm. Brian said there's a red one coming up in 2018 too.

#35 DasKaltblut

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 17:50

I have to agree with you. I’ve liked the look of the Duragraph and when this sold before I could even have time to think about it I thought to look at some of the other colors, but not for what is now a 48% premium over the $35 price


Except that $35 was a super discount to move those colors. Brian mentioned that they thought they'd take months to sell, even at that price, and they were surprised that they flew off the shelves. Still, paying full price now, and getting free ink is better than full price come January 1 without free ink.

#36 Intensity

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 18:15

Nice to hear because the purple nights are also sold out atm. Brian said there's a red one coming up in 2018 too.

 

Yes, the other part of their response was that they will be getting more stock of the purple one, including the Fine nib variety.  Medium and stub will be available this week and Fine is on backorder but will eventually be available.

 

Is the red one basically the same as Merlot?  Or different?  My Merlot Duragraph has really grown on me in the past couple of days, and now I'm thinking of adding another color at some point (probably the purple nights).


Edited by Intensity, 18 December 2017 - 18:19.


#37 KellyMcJ

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 18:16

Except that $35 was a super discount to move those colors. Brian mentioned that they thought they'd take months to sell, even at that price, and they were surprised that they flew off the shelves. Still, paying full price now, and getting free ink is better than full price come January 1 without free ink.

 

 

Really? Wow. I guess they thought it was a huge screwup....I mean, it was, in a way, but a lot of people (myself included) think it's better than their regular offerings.

 

If anyone from Conklin is reading this PLEASE MAKE IT PART OF THE REGULAR LINEUP!!!! 



#38 TSherbs

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 18:58

Except that $35 was a super discount to move those colors. Brian mentioned that they thought they'd take months to sell, even at that price, and they were surprised that they flew off the shelves. Still, paying full price now, and getting free ink is better than full price come January 1 without free ink.

 

spend more, save more ;)



#39 DasKaltblut

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 20:24

Is the red one basically the same as Merlot?  Or different?  My Merlot Duragraph has really grown on me in the past couple of days, and now I'm thinking of adding another color at some point (probably the purple nights).


All I know is that he said they were trying to make a purple and a red and something came out Merlot. I imagine the red will be more of a true red, but that's just my speculation. I already got a purple, I actually like that more than the merlot, but I'm not giving up my merlot either :)

#40 AK-47

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 08:47

I have to agree that the Merlot was a fantastic design choice -- it looks very understated and classy. Hope Conklin takes a cue for future designs. I could see a dark red/black speckled looking quite good...

 

~AK


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