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Kaweco Supra


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#1 Fluegelfeder

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 19:43

Dear all,

 

let's say you could have only one brass pen, which one would it be? I decided for the Kaweco Supra fountain pen - and here's why: Brass as material for writing instruments seems to be all about patina and this very unique, rugged look. Therefore it should be a pen that works well with such a rustic style. And it should be a pen you can work with on a daily basis - otherwise it develops it's unique patina by laying in it's box :)
Given these premises I decided for the Kaweco Supra. But why Kaweco? And why the Supra?
Among the many companies producing brass pens Kaweco definitely is one of the leading names. There are four different series that feature brass fountain pens (Sport, Liliput, Supra and Special). But what's more: Kaweco ist one of the leading companies with regard to pocket fountain pens - and especially these work with the already mentioned rugged look of brass and are handy enough to be used (and abused) as an edc pen. Being designed for being carried in a trouser pocket offers a fair chance for a great patina that develops from day to day. So Kaweco is a very good starting point.

But why the Supra? Often referred to as a 'big Liliput' it is infact way more than that. What I like best about it, is the perfect combination of a true pocket fountain pen (if you leave out the extension piece) with the diameter, weight and nib dimensions of a normal fountain pen. The Liliput is too small and especially the grip section too narrow for extendet writing periods - at least for me personally. The Sport is indeed a very fine pen and amoung my all time favorites. But because of the small nib I tend to grab it at the thread between section an barrel. The Supra is perfectly dimensioned for me: Because of the big nib the section is exactly where it belongs and where I intuitively hold the pen. The diameter of the section is very comfortable even for extended writing sessions. And cap posted even the pocket version without extension piece gives a writing instrument with normal length and quite hefty weight. I like it! And in addition the reluctand design makes a perfect canvas for the developing patina. As nice as the facettes of the Sport are, to me they somehow rival the patina. The smooth surface of the Supra allows even smallest changes to be noticed instantly. And exactly that is the point of having and working with a brass pen.

The quality and workmanship are top notch, as always with Kaweco. For example the tolerances of the threads are exeptional: Although the Supra has no inner cap or additional sealing whatsoever, the nib doesn't dry out and starts perfectly fine even if you haven't used it for days.

Last thing worth mentioning: The bigger nib in my Supra writes a lot wetter than the average small Kaweco nibs I have had so far. My F nib is a super smooth writer with just the perfect flow (7 out of 10), yet a true fine line and the perfect amount of feedback (don't get me wrong: no spring or flex at all, it's a nail). As much as I love my Sport Night Edition, the Supra is at least on a level playing field.

Is there something negative at all? Probably: The Kaweco Logo and the Supra writing aren't aligned. For the perfectionists among you this could be something worth knowing.  But then again: If that's the only trouble with this wonderful fountain pen, than there aren't any real problems with it at all, are there? ;)

To me this isn't just a really very good fountain pen, but infact the perfect brass fountain pen out there. The perfect combination of all the necessary attributes that make an outstanding writing instrument and at the same time allow to focus on a developing patina.

Good job, Kaweco!

 

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P.S. Just as a side note: No affiliations, just a happy customer!



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#2 Nosferatualso

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 20:06

Brilliant and passionate review. Thank you

#3 TheDutchGuy

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 10:34

Nice review, thanks! I share your enthousiasm for Kaweco. Currently an AL Sport F in stonewashed blue is my favourite all-day, every-day carry pen - and has been for 2.5 years. I wasn't really aware of the Supra so I need to check it out.

#4 Fluegelfeder

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Posted 07 March 2018 - 08:27

Thank you, guys!
@TheDutchGuy: I ordered my Supra via mostwanted-pens. Again no affiliation, I only mention it, because the whole collection is available there plus special editions like the Sport Night edition.

#5 displacermoose

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Posted 08 March 2018 - 16:32

I've been looking at these for a while as well. I'd probably get one in a heartbeat if they had some different finishes since the brass just doesn't butter my biscuits.  I've long been a devotee of Sports (I have four), I guess I'll just stick with them for now. :)


Yet another Sarah.


#6 Fluegelfeder

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Posted 22 March 2018 - 08:29

I'm sorry, but I need to correct a mistake I unfortunately made:

 

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The big nib in fact is not a nail at all! On the contrary it shows an amazing amount of flex  :yikes:  -  especially for a pen that's not explicitly advertised as flex pen. When writing normally you don't get much line variation (then again this means you can write very fast without any trouble!), but if you apply pressure, already a little is enough to get you from F to BBB without any difficulty. I didn't try to flex in my review at the first place, because all my small nibbed Kaweco nibs are true nails and I didn't even think of the Supra being any different, let alone SO different. Well, we all make mistakes, but luckily sometimes reality proofs to be even better than we thought :D

The inkflow is absolutely constant, and even with strong flexing you get no railroading at all. Very well done, Kaweco  :thumbup:   



#7 TheDutchGuy

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Posted 30 June 2018 - 12:59

Bought one, admittedly as an impulse acquisition. Got a good deal at my local store. I've had my eye on this pen for a while now. Love the design, the understated beauty and the ruggedness. The extender is a wonderful idea. I remove it to use the Supra as a travel pen, and add if for longer unposted sessions. Apart from the design, I bought it because I didn't have a B yet.

Kaweco gets a lot of flak because many feel their nibs are bad. I've bought 4 Kawecos during the last 3 years: an AL Sport F, a Classic Sport F, a Dia2 M and this Supra B. The Dia2 had severe baby's bottom so I got a refund for that. The others were fine, though they started out a tad on the dry side and became (a lot) wetter over time. That's fine with me - with use, the tines spread a little and the surface of the feed changes its surface tension characteristics a bit. I've got a few pens that started out wet and became *very* wet over time, and that's not always easy to correct. Using wet ink will solve any dryness during the pen's youth.

My Supra is also a tad dry, though not at all bothersome. Nice shading and colour variation with Waterman Mysterious Blue. I expect it to become about 15% wetter, which would make it perfect. The B nib is very well made, it's quite large and fits the dimensions of the pen very well. It even offers some line variation. Line width is not what I expected from a B, it's more like a M and on some paper it looks even finer than that. There's a hint of stubbishness in the writing, which I love.

All things considered, I love this pen. The writing experience is not as delicately, exquisitely refined as with my gold-nibbed Japanese pens, but it makes up for that in design (the Japanese ones are cigars), in ruggedness and in 'vibe'. This thing just screams 'pick me up!' and it will see lots of daily use, both as an EDC pen as well as for longer sessions (i.e. journaling). Hats off to Kaweco for offering this much quality for a street price of well under 100 euros.

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#8 sansenri

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Posted 30 June 2018 - 14:35

lovely pen and thank you for the review, I have to take a closer look at this pen.

 

I am a happy owner of several Kawecos.

 

My favourite brass pen as of now is in fact the Liliput brass waves.

I think it's a work of art.

secondly it's a very useful travel pen, and usually stays in a pocket in my back pack.

It is really small, but that allows me to have a fountain pen always with me.

Mechanical quality and ruggedness is second to none, probably indestructible...

 

this larger version is no doubt intriguing, and the nib looks interesting too (if I have a minor complaint on the Liliput it's the very stiff nib)



#9 minddance

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Posted 30 June 2018 - 19:31

I am a very happy owner of several Kaweco Sport in different nib widths, in fact all (if one doesn't consider the italic nibs) from ef to bb. They write dry OOTB. I had to spread the tines out for my F and BB nibs. The medium nib I had probably didn't agree with my hand, I actually found it scratchy, imagine a scratchy Medium nib. The rest are quite alright. (I also removed 2 fins from the feed of the EF, don't mind me, I enjoy super wet pens) :)

They all seal and preserve inks very well despite the absence of an inner cap.

The only complaint is the ink capacity.

Now after reading this review, I might consider the Supra. And I need it to be real real wet.

Edited by minddance, 30 June 2018 - 19:43.


#10 TheDutchGuy

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Posted 30 June 2018 - 20:18

Now after reading this review, I might consider the Supra. And I need it to be real real wet.


Instead of tinkering with the nib, I'd suggest using a very wet ink. Blackstone inks are very nice and very wet; I've had great results with Sydney Harbour Blue. If it's still too dry for your taste, add a tiny little bit of glycerine to your ink. Problem solved. My AL Sport and Classic Sport needed very wet inks in the beginning and plateau'd out after about 10 refills. After a very thorough flushing, the Supra is already very very good OOTB. I like to see some shading and colour variation, so average wetness is good enough for me.

#11 minddance

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Posted 30 June 2018 - 20:48

Yes, those were early days when I was a newbie. Spreading the tines can result in problems and it changes the way nibs contact with paper.

I have tried glycerine but did not enjoy its effects as much as Kodak Photoflo. That was needed in some of my pens with certain inks in autumn and winter. Now it is high summer and all my pens, papers, inks are behaving very differently. Things are wetter now and feathering/bleedthrough issues now surface on some papers that I use. I guess it is good to have a mid-dry pen handy for summers :)

#12 TheDutchGuy

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Posted 01 July 2018 - 05:50

The only complaint is the ink capacity.

With the extender in place, the Supra can hold a large cartridge, which will last a long time (and can be refilled with a syringe, if desired). Or you can fit a spare cartridge in the back of the barrel. That's what I do, so I can freely use the pen with or without the extender.

For those who like the design but worry about the weight (brass is heavy; this is a very heavy pen), check out the other metals that Kaweco uses. The brass version is the heaviest one.






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