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Calling All Franklin-Christoph Owners!

franklin-christop fountain pens help questions model 19 model 33 model 02 model 03 model 20 model 65

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37 replies to this topic

#21 Driften

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 04:42


I haven't used the M-27 in a long time. The chrome caps make it very top-heavy when posted.
My one complaint with most F-C pens is that they dry out quickly. If they are not used every day I find I have to work to get the ink flowing. 

...

 

 

It's funny you say they dry out quickly. When I used my model 02 or model 31 with a converter I saw the same thing, but when I had the model 02, 45, p66 setup with eye dropper fill they could go weeks with out drying out. I think the converter just does not keep the feed as wet or something. Maybe if I put a spring or something to break up surface tension in the converter they would work better.



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#22 cjr

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 16:13

I've bought all my F-C pens at pen shows where they personally set up and tune the pen for you. I have:

  • Model 20 Marrietta with #6 fine steel nib
  • Model 65 Stablis with #5 steel Masuyama fine cursive italic
  • Model 45 XLV pocket pen with #5 steel Masuyama fine cursive italic
  • Model 02 Intrinsic with #6 steel Masuyama fine cursive italic

All four pens write perfectly without skipping or drying. I use mostly Noodler's inks, but the Franklin Christoph inks are very nice and well-behaved, if not water resistant. I think that F-C pen designs with the thread further up the section helps ensure a tighter seal and less area exposed to air when capped.

 

My favorite of the four is the Model 65 with the #5 nib. It is a joy to use. I prefer the #5 nibs to the #6 because I like a smaller profile and finer line. Mike Masuyama is a master of turning a fine nib into a perfect cursive italic. I now only buy his nibs on the new pens, although I have tested their SIG nibs and like them.

 

The Model 20 is a slip on cap that is strictly friction fit. It seals very well, but frequent uncapping and recapping sometimes causes pressure changes and ink burping. The 45 is a small pen that only uses the small international cartridge which I refill using a syringe. The 65 is a desk pen and doesn't have a clip, but I carry it in my pocket anyway. The Model 02 is a bit larger and, with the #6 nib, is the biggest of the four.

 

I write mostly on Black n' Red, Quo Vadis, and 28# Staples laser paper. These nibs work just fine on these papers, but it always depends on the ink you pair with the pen.

 

I've gotten great results using DeAtramentis Document Blue, Black, and Dark Blue ink in the Model 65 with the fine CI. Just wet enough to write smoothly, but not bleed through like DA Doc inks tend to do.

 

The Model 45 with fine CI pairs beautifully with Noodler's Zhivago for a nice, fine line.


Edited by cjr, 24 May 2018 - 16:14.

Favorite pen/ink pairings: Franklin Christoph Model 02 W/EF nib and Noodler's El Lawrence; Sheaffer Legacy w/18k extra fine inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Sheaffer PFM III fine w/14k inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Lamy 2000 EF with Noodler's 54th Massachusetts; Franklin Christoph 65 Stablis w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and DeAtramentis Document Blue; Pineider Avatar w/fine nib and Noodler's Bad Belted Kingfisher; Karas Kustoms Fountain K w/steel extra fine nib and Platinum Pigment Blue; Pilot Decimo w/18k fine nib and Pilot Blue Black; Franklin Christoph 45 w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and Noodler's Zhivago; Edison Brockton EF and Noodler's El Lawrence; TWSBI ECO EF with Noodler's Bad Green Gator.


#23 Purphoros

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 22:55

The King's Gold stripes on my 19 could I suppose look "brown" if you were not aware of the color ascribed to the pen model.  To me, they are the color described as "King's Gold" on the website & shown in their photograph.  They do indeed sparkle in light & offer a nice contrast to the shiny black body/cap of the pen.  

 

I don't think I made this up, but I am unsure where I heard or saw it attributed, that the choice of the color & name was meant to be representative of the Sheaffer ink called by the same name, "King's Gold;" An ink that has been discontinued, but still can be found sometimes, that has a great many fans.  I am one of them & usually keep the pen filled with this ink or any new "gold" colored ink I receive.

 

I liked this color best of the options available @time of my purchase because I thought it offered the greatest contrast to the black presence of the pen.  I would feel same about the bands on the Panther, unless they were vibrant I would not be interested in the pen, despite it's attractive design.

 

I also don't think you would be sorry with choosing a Lamy 2000; I quite like my Makrolon, despite it's black color!  (I purchased the steel one first & have never warmed to it, despite a more desired nib choice than the broad on the Makrolon.)  The Lamy has earned it's reputation as a workhorse & popular pen for a reason & I imagine you could enjoy it a great deal while awaiting the FC of your choosing.

How similar does the color of the band appear to that of the images on Sheaffer's King's Gold that can be found online? I would like the idea of a sparkly yellow color but I'm concerned it will be much darker than I would want.

 

Thanks.



#24 Purphoros

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 23:01

I've bought all my F-C pens at pen shows where they personally set up and tune the pen for you. I have:

  • Model 20 Marrietta with #6 fine steel nib
  • Model 65 Stablis with #5 steel Masuyama fine cursive italic
  • Model 45 XLV pocket pen with #5 steel Masuyama fine cursive italic
  • Model 02 Intrinsic with #6 steel Masuyama fine cursive italic

All four pens write perfectly without skipping or drying. I use mostly Noodler's inks, but the Franklin Christoph inks are very nice and well-behaved, if not water resistant. I think that F-C pen designs with the thread further up the section helps ensure a tighter seal and less area exposed to air when capped.

 

My favorite of the four is the Model 65 with the #5 nib. It is a joy to use. I prefer the #5 nibs to the #6 because I like a smaller profile and finer line. Mike Masuyama is a master of turning a fine nib into a perfect cursive italic. I now only buy his nibs on the new pens, although I have tested their SIG nibs and like them.

 

The Model 20 is a slip on cap that is strictly friction fit. It seals very well, but frequent uncapping and recapping sometimes causes pressure changes and ink burping. The 45 is a small pen that only uses the small international cartridge which I refill using a syringe. The 65 is a desk pen and doesn't have a clip, but I carry it in my pocket anyway. The Model 02 is a bit larger and, with the #6 nib, is the biggest of the four.

 

I write mostly on Black n' Red, Quo Vadis, and 28# Staples laser paper. These nibs work just fine on these papers, but it always depends on the ink you pair with the pen.

 

I've gotten great results using DeAtramentis Document Blue, Black, and Dark Blue ink in the Model 65 with the fine CI. Just wet enough to write smoothly, but not bleed through like DA Doc inks tend to do.

 

The Model 45 with fine CI pairs beautifully with Noodler's Zhivago for a nice, fine line.

Thanks for your help, your input on the Masuyama fine cursive italics is very useful.

 

I thought the model 65 was larger or am I thinking of the 66? Still though, I like a big pen and the 2, 3, and 19 seem to be perfect for that.



#25 Purphoros

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 23:06

 

 

It's funny you say they dry out quickly. When I used my model 02 or model 31 with a converter I saw the same thing, but when I had the model 02, 45, p66 setup with eye dropper fill they could go weeks with out drying out. I think the converter just does not keep the feed as wet or something. Maybe if I put a spring or something to break up surface tension in the converter they would work better.

Hmm, I may investigate that for my Parker 45, the converter in it sucks.



#26 Purphoros

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 23:12

I have the following:

M-14 in black with fine nib (discontinued)
M-27 Collegia fountain pen I fine nib with matching ballpoint. Chrome cap with black body (discontinued).
M-29 in black with olive trim (it's really more grey) with 1.1 italic nib (discontinued).
02 Intrinsic in green with fine nib
M-19 1901 in black with white stripes with 0.9 italic nib

I haven't used the M-27 in a long time. The chrome caps make it very top-heavy when posted.
My one complaint with most F-C pens is that they dry out quickly. If they are not used every day I find I have to work to get the ink flowing. That said, I've used the 1901 a lot, because it is a great writer. Just dug the 02 out of storage and loaded it with Diamine Emerald, which seems to work well.

I love the design aesthetic of Franklin-Christoph. And once I have the money, a 65 Stablils will join my collection

There is something appealing about the F-C design that I can't pin down, they give off a sort of mood.  The website being black too just adds to that feeling, then there are the secretive versions and special editions which just appear and disappear (BTW special edition of the 02, not my style but they look cool, check the stock room).

 

I got really close to buying the 1901 in black and white but it reminds me too much of an Oreo and makes me hungry.



#27 MG66

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 00:16

I visited the factory last month (a short drive over lunch for me) and bought a 66 black in medium steel and a 19 in black and garnet with Masuyama fine CI nib.  Both are favorites now.  I use the 19 for journaling primarily and the 66 for correspondence.  The free fills I got initially were Black Forest in the 66 and Black Cherry in the 19.  Both inks were great, especially the Black Cherry.  I now have Diamine Woodland Green in the 66 and Krishna Christmas Eve in the 19.  Both are performing very well with these inks also.

 

My theory, based on absolutely nothing but pure speculation, was the F-C focused on pen show sales, and that's why they always seem to be out of many popular models on their website.  The very helpful and sweet Mandy, who scheduled my appointment at F-C, told me that wasn't the case.  They are just facing a demand that the supply simply cannot keep up with.  

 

Besides scheduling my appointment and meeting the legendary Mandy, my only experience with their customer service was in exchanging an F-C Firmaflex journal I'd bought through Massdrop that was incorrectly labeled.  The less-than-helpful, couldn't give a (bleep) folks at MD offered a small refund after putting me through the wringer forcing me to provide proof that I had ordered what I said I'd ordered (they already knew exactly what I'd ordered), a photo of the packing slip, and a photo of the incorrect product they shipped me.  Then ignoring me for a week and telling me I hadn't sent them any proof.  F-C took my journal and replaced it with a brand new one, no questions asked, no hassle involved.  

 

 

- Carl


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I assume as much for other people

We’ve listened more to life’s end gong

Than the sound of life’s sweet bells


#28 Purphoros

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 00:52

I visited the factory last month (a short drive over lunch for me) and bought a 66 black in medium steel and a 19 in black and garnet with Masuyama fine CI nib.  Both are favorites now.  I use the 19 for journaling primarily and the 66 for correspondence.  The free fills I got initially were Black Forest in the 66 and Black Cherry in the 19.  Both inks were great, especially the Black Cherry.  I now have Diamine Woodland Green in the 66 and Krishna Christmas Eve in the 19.  Both are performing very well with these inks also.

 

My theory, based on absolutely nothing but pure speculation, was the F-C focused on pen show sales, and that's why they always seem to be out of many popular models on their website.  The very helpful and sweet Mandy, who scheduled my appointment at F-C, told me that wasn't the case.  They are just facing a demand that the supply simply cannot keep up with.  

 

Besides scheduling my appointment and meeting the legendary Mandy, my only experience with their customer service was in exchanging an F-C Firmaflex journal I'd bought through Massdrop that was incorrectly labeled.  The less-than-helpful, couldn't give a (bleep) folks at MD offered a small refund after putting me through the wringer forcing me to provide proof that I had ordered what I said I'd ordered (they already knew exactly what I'd ordered), a photo of the packing slip, and a photo of the incorrect product they shipped me.  Then ignoring me for a week and telling me I hadn't sent them any proof.  F-C took my journal and replaced it with a brand new one, no questions asked, no hassle involved.  

 

 

- Carl

I'm glad to hear that the journal situation worked out.  F-C seems to have a fairly small manufacturing operation compared to the likes of really any other well established brand.  The fact they are selling out quickly is a good thing, however I personally believe they may want to trim down their line a little bit to try and match demand on their more popular models.  Fourteen pens in production (with at least 3 colors each) and forty-one nib options must be a logistical nightmare.

 

The 19 in black garnet is the one that I would really like, I'll keep an eye out and I will be buying one as my next fountain pen in August.



#29 ink-syringe

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 04:20

 
I have a 
66 in Antique Glass Masuyama Medium Stub (gold)
Pocket 66 in Blue with a Broad S.I.G. nib (steel)
20 in Antique Glass Masuyama Broad Italic (Gold)
03 in Italian Ice Masuyama Broad Italic (Gold)
 
My favorite nib is the Masuyama Broad Italic as you can see (I have 2). I also liked the S.I.G. The Masuyama medium stub (I've had 2 actually) did nothing for me. The stub aspect of it was barely visible. But the Masuyama Broad Italic is by far my favorite. I guess I like sharper edged nibs than I thought.
 
Customer Service is absolutely fantastic. Literally the best after service I have experienced from a pen company. I was unhappy with one nib I got and they made it right and my Model 20 had a defective cap which they replaced and paid shipping. Their shipping is insanely fast. I live 7000 miles from them and asked them too keep and test the pen to be sure and they did. The repair was perfect. I also bought a bunch of pen cases from them and was unhappy the finish on one and they also replaced that. I own a lot of F-C products and their products have a lot of appeal to me. The F-C folks took a lot of care to make sure I was happy. They were kind and courteous and pleasant to deal with every step of the way and generally exceeded all my expectations.
 
I too, once was dismissive of (seemingly) swirly acrylic pens with screw in Jowo nib units but I would argue that F-C designs are unusual and forward looking beyond the pretty plastic (distal block threads, huge range of nib options, quality machining and finishing, etc) and they tune all the nibs they afix to their pens
 
How it performs on cheap and nice paper depends entirely on the ink. My ink of choice varies but I currently have Vistonti Blue in my P66 and Sailor Blue Black in my Model 20 and 03. 
 
The 66 desk pen is too long to carry around so it gets the least use. The P66 is nice but is cartridge only. I do not eyedropper my pens. The Model 20 is my favorite. It is that perfect size and so good in the hand, with great balance and ergonomics. It is the same size as the Pelikan M600, the Pilot 912 and the Sheaffer Nononsense. I find this a very very nice size. But the 03 is vying for that top spot now, being generally the same size, same nib but with a screw cap with distal threads (Like a 30s Sheaffer Crest) but I still think the model 20 takes it. 

Looking for a cap for a Sheaffer Touchdown Sentinel Deluxe Fat version

 

#30 ENewton

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 18:08

 

I was unhappy with one nib I got and they made it right and my Model 20 had a defective cap which they replaced and paid shipping. Their shipping is insanely fast. I live 7000 miles from them and asked them too keep and test the pen to be sure and they did. The repair was perfect. I also bought a bunch of pen cases from them and was unhappy the finish on one and they also replaced that. 

 

 

Even better customer service would be to check an order that is to be shipped 7000 miles to make sure there are no defects.

 

You are very loyal to continue patronizing a company that has necessitated your shipping merchandise back for repair, from one continent to another, on three separate occasions.



#31 flyingpenman

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 19:24

I shouldn’t have read this thread - now I’ve been in the (almost literal) black hole of F-C’s website for the past hour. Glad they’ll be at the Triangle Pen Show so I can see these in person...suspect it will be hard to resist one of these in just the right finish and nib combo...:D
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#32 Driften

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 20:05

I shouldn’t have read this thread - now I’ve been in the (almost literal) black hole of F-C’s website for the past hour. Glad they’ll be at the Triangle Pen Show so I can see these in person...suspect it will be hard to resist one of these in just the right finish and nib combo... :D

 

 

When they go to shows they normally bring pens they don't have on the website. It's the best time to try and get an antique glass model or some experimental material. With them tuning the nib to you right there it's every better then ordering direct.



#33 flyingpenman

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 20:07

When they go to shows they normally bring pens they don't have on the website. It's the best time to try and get an antique glass model or some experimental material. With them tuning the nib to you right there it's every better then ordering direct.


I’ve heard that - and it makes sense. In your experience do they bring some of their regular stock as well, in case the experimentals go quickly or aren’t to your liking?
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#34 Driften

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Posted 26 May 2018 - 21:33

I’ve heard that - and it makes sense. In your experience do they bring some of their regular stock as well, in case the experimentals go quickly or aren’t to your liking?

 

I have not actually been to one of the shows they were at, but it's my understanding they also bring normal production stock.  You should have a good selection to chose from.



#35 ink-syringe

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Posted 27 May 2018 - 04:06

 

Even better customer service would be to check an order that is to be shipped 7000 miles to make sure there are no defects.

 

You are very loyal to continue patronizing a company that has necessitated your shipping merchandise back for repair, from one continent to another, on three separate occasions.

 

 

The nib wasn't defective, it just wasn't to my taste. I wanted a sharper grind so it was more a nib exchange than anything.

 

The case wasn't defective really either, it was just not as pretty as the others (I own more than one). I could have lived with it.

 

The cap was genuinely defective. It is a known issue with that particular finish that occasionally some small percentage of them deform. I was one of the unlucky on that front. It seems a byproduct of the unique acrylics on those particular pens.

 

All three issue were taken care of in one back and forth (they all fit in one box, I shipped them together) and they footed almost the whole shipping and sent everything express. Yes better if everything is always perfect the first time around but we know it isn't always, especially with something as personal as a hand-tuned fountain pen with a custom nib grind.

 

For me the key is how the company responds when things go awry. F-C was great. I owned the case a while. They didn't have to swap it out and the nib I got was also totally functional, again a swap they, strickly speaking, didn't have to make.

 

Meanwhile, The 66, the P66 and the 03 all came great out of the box so that is a pretty good success rate if you ask me.


Looking for a cap for a Sheaffer Touchdown Sentinel Deluxe Fat version

 

#36 Misfit

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Posted 27 May 2018 - 06:06

Did you check out the link Sharon provided? I think there were several replies from lefthanded people in that thread. I recently bought an Omnis #31, and it is a large pen compared to a 3 and 20. I posted a photo of it beside a Visconti in the aforementioned thead that Sharons link leads to.

Edited to add F-C is excellent at replying to emails, and are very helpful. I emailed about nibs and explained what I liked, and their answer was right.

Edited by Misfit, 27 May 2018 - 06:07.

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#37 fphilipp

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Posted 27 May 2018 - 18:03

I have a Marietta (FC 20, medium sig nib), an Eclipse  (FC 25, idem) and a Panther (FC 40, bold sig nib) and like them a lot. All has been said except maybe this: they come in a very nice leather pouch. No cheap or expensive packaging that will disappear in your already stuffed cupboard's drawer. 



#38 letterByOwl

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Posted 09 July 2018 - 18:09

Currently, p66 in solid ice (eyedropper-ed with Bungubox Sapphire).  It's stunning.  SIG fine nib (smooth and forgiving with hint of feedback--quite nice for a beginner like me).  I need to try the other nibs.  Customer service is A++++.  I originally bought the 02 but ultimately didn't like the shape and returned it with NO QUESTIONS ASKED with FULL REFUND.  All correspondence has been as lovely as they can be.  Quality great.  Customer service excellent.  I understand why people collected 50+ F-C pens now.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: franklin-christop, fountain pens, help, questions, model 19, model 33, model 02, model 03, model 20, model 65



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