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Very Disappointing Experience With A Pelikan M805 Stresemann

pelikan m805 m800 gold nib 18k fine medium alternatives recommendations

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78 replies to this topic

#61 bemon

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 19:46

Hi Guys.

 

I have been into fountain pens for a while now, but I hadn't bought any expensive pens until now. My collection mainly consisted of TWSBIs which I have been very happy with.

 

I worked really hard this year for my 2nd-year exams, and I worked pretty hard over the summer in an internship so I decided I would reward myself with my first "expensive pen".

 

I decided on the Pelikan M805 Stresemann for a couple of reasons.

1 - It looks brilliant. I really like the look of the grey stripes down the barrel. I haven't seen a pen that I like the look of so much.

2 - I had heard that Pelikan nibs are some of the best nibs around and write brilliantly out of the box.

 

However, I opened up my new pen this morning and sadly I have never been so disappointed with a purchase.

 

As I was opening the pen it was somewhat clear that I had been sent a pen that was previously a return. For example, the little plastic bag that the pen comes in was all screwed up. (I bought this pen from cultpens in the UK by the way). Now I'm wondering if someone else had a bad experience of this pen, sent it back, and now I've ended up with it.

 

On the barrel, it appears that one of the grey stripes is missing. There appears to be a dark gap where it is missing. I have tried to get a picture of this but it is quite difficult to pick it up on camera! This is something that wouldn't bother me in the slightest on a much cheaper pen, but at £300 I'm not impressed by this.

 

IlUi8wJ.jpg

 

I decided to forget all this as the writing experience is the most important thing. So I inked up the pen with some Iroshizuku Ku-Jaku and began to write with it. The writing experience is extremely disappointing! It's almost as if I am writing with a different pen to that of the reviewers online. 

The nib is very dry, and not smooth at all. Also, it feels very stiff which I was surprised by as a lot of people say the Pelikan nibs have some spring to them.

I grabbed my TWSBI Eco to compare the writing experience, and the eco is the clear winner. Smoother and wetter, at less than a tenth of the cost.

 

A lot of people say that the Pelikan nibs are quite broad. For example, the medium M805 nib in the pen habits review looked more like a broad or even a double broad. So I decided I would go with a fine nib as opposed to the medium nib I usually go for. 

 

So I'm wondering, would you guys recommend returning the pen and swapping it for the same pen with a medium nib? Or do you think I would be better getting a refund and buying a different pen altogether?

If you think there is a better alternative pen out there I would appreciate any recommendations - I'm looking for a pen with a really wet and smooth nib for the best writing experience possible. Around £300 or less.

Horrible to hear :( I hope you get some resolution from the seller. Seems like the stripes aren't even on any of my M400's or M600's FYI. But the writing experience should be better. 



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#62 Mulrich

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 21:48

I have M800s and an M1000 and the M1000 doesn't get much use. YMMV, but I don't like the M1000's nib; it's squishy (not really springy or flexible, but squishy) and is too wet for almost any ink/paper combination (it's bled through many high quality, thick papers). I have a couple very dry inks (ie., iron-gall) that do okay in the pen but still prefer other pens. 



#63 Lord-Spikey

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Posted 21 September 2018 - 02:52

I have now posted the pen back to cultpens for a refund.

I wasn't going to keep it just for the sake of the shipping costs (£8.60), it just annoys me a little that they won't cover it. 

 

So with that in mind, what would you guys recommend buying if I'm looking for a pen that will write really wet and smooth right out of the box?

Hi John

 

I, like you, have been playing with fountain pens for a little while now and my Pelikan M800 was my second "more expensive" fountain pen, after my purchase of a Lamy 2000 SS.

 

I love my Pelikan and is mostly my go-to pen for writing experience. I also have a new ST Dupont Line D,  which is my smoothest writer, but probably more expensive than 300 pounds.

 

Now, my Pelikan M800 (Green) is has a medium nib and it is quite wide, but that was my choice.

I originally inked it with Montblanc Irish Green and noticed that the ink seemed to bleed over the face of the nib and it wrote very wet. This bothered me and I sought advice. Someone suggested that my ink of choice was a noted bleeder and I should try other inks.

 

I now use Lamy blue ink and no more bleeding and an average wet write. I am very happy.

 

While the gold nib is not as soft as the dreamtouch nib on my Visconti Homosapiens, it does have the flexibility to provide some variety in line width with pressure and angle. Just not much.

 

If I were you, I would persevere with the Pelikan M805, but if course replace it with a good one. I always buy my pens from a store, where I can actually write with my intended purchase. You wouldn't normally buy a very personal object without trying it, particularly for the money that good pens attract.

 

Just my thought.


The Pen is Mightier than the Sword.... but I'd rather take my Katana into battle


#64 stephanos

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Posted 22 September 2018 - 13:44

 

I'll be sure to check out some reviews on the Sailor to see if its a better option for me. Would you say their nibs are wet and smooth? 

 

I'll make a note of John Sorowka in case I need to send a pen off to a nibmeister in future. Although if I'm paying £300 for a pen like the Pelikan I don't really like the idea of having to send it off for further work. I understand that not every nib can be absolutely perfect, but at that price, you should be able to expect at least a good writing experience.

 

I'm glad you got the sort of customer service that one should reliably expect.

 

My experience of Sailor nibs is that they are like a soft pencil - not buttery smooth, but smooth with a touch of feedback. Perfect for my taste.

 

Re: nib-work. I completely agree that you shouldn't have to have work done on a new nib to make it write properly: it shoudl be that you pays your money, you gets a working product.

Having said that, it's not impossible that, in the future, you get a nib that works well, but which doesn't write in the way you would prefer - at that point, a nib-fiddler becomes a relevant option. Same goes for anything you buy on the secondary market (i.e. used).

 

If you're up north, there are three pen shows that could perhaps apply to you (if by "up north" you mean in England, rather than further north, in Scotland): Chester, Newcastle and Sheffield. Of those three, the next one is on 25 November, in Sheffield. See https://www.purepens...-and-Dates.html for dates.



#65 TeeTee

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Posted 23 September 2018 - 08:26

A Quick Update:

 

I was reading some posts on here where I saw somebody mention that Pelikan is rumoured to be releasing an M1005 Stresemann in the coming months.

 

This is really exciting for me, as I would have loved to get the M1000 but I just didn't like the look of it. I didn't like the green stripes and the plain black model is just a bit boring. 

 

So with that in mind, I think the best thing for me to do now is to wait and see if this M1005 does get released. Fingers Crossed!

 

 

 

Almost the same case!

 

I nearly ordered the M805 Stresemann for few times from Cultpens, and for such a BIG decision, lucky that many experts gave their very precise sharing here, and so I'll wait for the M1005 Stresemann, hope the price is acceptable turn out.

 

After forgetting about the M1000 & M805, I turn my wallet to the Sailor Pro Gear directly from Japan, it's on the way. 

Now I'm really looking forward to the performance of the famous bi-color 21K nib.

 

Glad your side is settled. ^_^



#66 Safari_Camo

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Posted 24 September 2018 - 03:53

Hello @John545 
Keep us posted  how do you resolve the issue.

I've in my radar the same pen in the same store :/



#67 John545

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Posted 24 September 2018 - 16:46

Hi John

 

I, like you, have been playing with fountain pens for a little while now and my Pelikan M800 was my second "more expensive" fountain pen, after my purchase of a Lamy 2000 SS.

 

I love my Pelikan and is mostly my go-to pen for writing experience. I also have a new ST Dupont Line D,  which is my smoothest writer, but probably more expensive than 300 pounds.

 

Now, my Pelikan M800 (Green) is has a medium nib and it is quite wide, but that was my choice.

I originally inked it with Montblanc Irish Green and noticed that the ink seemed to bleed over the face of the nib and it wrote very wet. This bothered me and I sought advice. Someone suggested that my ink of choice was a noted bleeder and I should try other inks.

 

I now use Lamy blue ink and no more bleeding and an average wet write. I am very happy.

 

While the gold nib is not as soft as the dreamtouch nib on my Visconti Homosapiens, it does have the flexibility to provide some variety in line width with pressure and angle. Just not much.

 

If I were you, I would persevere with the Pelikan M805, but if course replace it with a good one. I always buy my pens from a store, where I can actually write with my intended purchase. You wouldn't normally buy a very personal object without trying it, particularly for the money that good pens attract.

 

Just my thought.

 

How does the Pelikan compare to your Lamy 2000? I'm considering getting a 2000 (although it would be the regular one, not the ss).



#68 John545

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Posted 24 September 2018 - 16:50

 

I'm glad you got the sort of customer service that one should reliably expect.

 

My experience of Sailor nibs is that they are like a soft pencil - not buttery smooth, but smooth with a touch of feedback. Perfect for my taste.

 

Re: nib-work. I completely agree that you shouldn't have to have work done on a new nib to make it write properly: it shoudl be that you pays your money, you gets a working product.

Having said that, it's not impossible that, in the future, you get a nib that works well, but which doesn't write in the way you would prefer - at that point, a nib-fiddler becomes a relevant option. Same goes for anything you buy on the secondary market (i.e. used).

 

If you're up north, there are three pen shows that could perhaps apply to you (if by "up north" you mean in England, rather than further north, in Scotland): Chester, Newcastle and Sheffield. Of those three, the next one is on 25 November, in Sheffield. See https://www.purepens...-and-Dates.html for dates.

 

Yes, I am too. Cult pens handled it pretty well so I can happily buy from them again. 

 

I like the sound of that actually, I got a spare Jowo nib from fpnibs.com that is quite smooth but a little bit of feedback like a pencil, and I quite enjoy writing with it. I might give Sailor a go then!

 

I wouldn't mind too much sending a pen to a nibmeister (or working on it myself if its a relatively cheap pen) just not when I've spent £300 on it!

 

Thanks for that, I'll check it out!



#69 John545

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Posted 24 September 2018 - 16:51

 

 

 

Almost the same case!

 

I nearly ordered the M805 Stresemann for few times from Cultpens, and for such a BIG decision, lucky that many experts gave their very precise sharing here, and so I'll wait for the M1005 Stresemann, hope the price is acceptable turn out.

 

After forgetting about the M1000 & M805, I turn my wallet to the Sailor Pro Gear directly from Japan, it's on the way. 

Now I'm really looking forward to the performance of the famous bi-color 21K nib.

 

Glad your side is settled. ^_^

 

Awesome! 

 

Please keep me posted on how the Sailor is! As mentioned above that might be a good option for me also, so I'd love to hear what you think of it!



#70 John545

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Posted 24 September 2018 - 16:53

Hello @John545 
Keep us posted  how do you resolve the issue.

I've in my radar the same pen in the same store :/

 

Regarding the pen I got from Cult pens, I returned it to them for a full refund. As they agreed I had received a defective nib, they also covered the costs of posting the pen back to them.

 

While they've got the 10% off offer on, it might be worth it if you really like the pen. I've got to say though, it was quite underwhelming for me. Nib issues aside, it seems very overpriced for what it is.



#71 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 24 September 2018 - 18:35

I buy when I can used pens, they are cheaper, more in line with real worth.

 

There is often disappointment when someone wonders what am I paying for ... above cheap Chinese pens............... be that a $70 or 150 pen.

 

Parker/Waterman made in France has high paid workers with six weeks vacation, just like in Germany. Waterman has two sizes of Exception, oversize $386-638 and the thinner one from $266-371...................they do have lots of cheaper pens about the price of a 200 and more.

 

Parker has a Duofold Prestige for $1000. Premier $440.

 

I don't know or chase Waterman or Parker...........but a few years ago the Sonnet had a most horrible nib....not just one like yours but for years nothing but complaints.....so I'd not dreamed of buying one....having the last good Parker the P-75...after an eon, Parker finally read FPN, and got better. ;)

 

 

What does one pay for with an expensive fountain pen....status.

If one buys new and it don't work good...send it back and say why.

If one has always had winners in the new pen market...be glad.

Many don't have  always winners in any brand. Otherwise there wouldn't be so many complaints here on the com.

 

What puzzles me is the lack of knowledge that shoddy new goods can be sent back to the manufacture for repair or replacement.

 

I wouldn't touch a Viscounti.....they use the cheapest Bock nib...but when a company is lead by bookkeepers, such decisions are made.

 

Pelikan nibs are made in house and should be better than the lowest Bock nib.

Pelikan once used Bock nibs....and the same complaints are now said about Pelikan nibs as was said when they used Bock nibs for a number of years. :lticaptd:So they used better quality Bock nibs. The last nib Pelikan took back in house was the 1000's nib which there had never been many complaints....out side someone didn't know a semi-flex nib writes wetter than the nail they were using before. 

A major Pelikan problem is over polishing = baby bottom. Yours was more serious.

 

Had you sent the pen back the second day....you might still be a Pelikan user. But having time to boil, won't ever be. :( Why didnn't you send it back as soon as you knew you had a problem?

 

Pens need a factory full of skilled workers, tool makers and such......some of the cost is that; the factory it's self costs a lot.

China has dirt cheap workers and a huge market. The fountain pens that survive in the west have to have good presence in the luxury market......or they go under.

 

MB could make their pens cheaper, but who would buy one? They went bankrupt (Pelikan too) and stopped making 2xx and 3xx cheaper pens; so have survived. The fact the dollar fell so hard and heavy certainly helped....in the MB was suddenly much more expensive than Parker and Sheaffer. So status seekers bought MB.....which a decade ago was the most hated pen on the Com...because of that.

 

When the dollar fell and only for that reason...Lincoln and Cadillac, were suddenly no longer seen as status cars...the medium-small Benz and BMW being more expensive were. The Lincoln had everything in the world in it....and all of that was extra on a Mercedes.....so one certainly showed the world....one had the bucks.

 

 A couple of decades ago back when the dollar was, real, real low. I'd flown the states with intentions of upgrading from 6 to a 8 cylinder Buick....they didn't have any. So for only$20 more a day...peanuts to the then DM at 1.35 to the dollar,  I got a Lincoln Town car. One day I parked next to a 7er BMW; :lticaptd:It lacked a full cloth yard of being full sized.  :P 

 

 

 

A 200 is a fine pen....even if some wonder why pay $95 for one...when there are much cheaper to be had.

If cheap pens was the only thing, Wearever once the biggest pen manufacture in the World by far....would still be still making fountain pens. Over priced pens keep the factory going...simple as that. As long as the luxury market is catered too, the pen company survives, and can afford to make medium and a cheaper pen....well MB's cheaper is not in any dictionary I have read. Selling Status Jr.

 

There are many economical and many cheap Chinese pens. I understand a $50 Duke is world class or as good as a Cross.....and why does Chinese made Cross cost so much?

It has a name, in I would guess Duke is just as good.


German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#72 Houston

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Posted 25 September 2018 - 07:02

 

I wouldn't touch a Viscounti.....they use the cheapest Bock nib...but when a company is lead by bookkeepers, such decisions are made.

 

 

I'm very lucky in not having had the problems others have had with their Viscontis. 

 

I'd venture to guess that Omas wasn't led by book-keepers. And, while I'd save my Omas pens from a fire, leaving the Viscontis behind, Visconti is still in business. Omas, even making aspirational luxury goods at show-off prices, has sadly passed.

 

What makes a good pen and what makes a good company are not always aligned. So it goes with "craft businesses".



#73 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 25 September 2018 - 11:02

Omas also according to folks here had nib problems for a long time.

 

Enough problems that Omas too didn't make my used wish list...those with the nibs of the good era, raved about them...those from the last era raved at them....

The good one's were still high priced used. :( 

 

Delta died too and it had good nibs; Bock. A little flashy for my tastes, but it was Italian...$$$, and nail nibs, so it didn't interest me, and I don't hang out in the Italian pen section so don't know how well it was liked by FPN.  I do feel sad when good pen companies go belly up.

 

My wallet is allergic against new pens.

The last rebirth of Conway Stewart, where they had no known nib problems....didn't make it either, and if I could have swapped nibs, there were only 5-6 of them I'd wanted..... :puddle:

 

With the coming of the Chinese piston pens...I see problems for Pelikan and Aurora.

Why should I spend $95 on a 200 when I can get xxx Chinese for $25-30 that is 'just as good'.

Luxury pens may be the profit padding, but the back bone is the 200...IMO, something to lead to the 400/600 middle class pens.

 

I can remember Parker, Sheaffer as US made, even Esterbrook, Wearever and Venus.....which goes to show you were the working class was orientated with need vs wish...........

 

Parker bought up Eversharp and used the name to sell PP junk third class pens in the '50's...competing with Wearever...I guess. :unsure:

I don't know what Cross the ball point maker of my child hood, will do with Sheaffer...besides move it from Indonesia to China. If they are smart they will bring back some old Sheaffer pens, the Imperial...in cartridge**.... :lticaptd: or the Targa. 

:huh: **They could Sheaffer had an inlaid nib cartridge pen.....I don't chase Sheaffer.

Cross's answer to the Hero pen; The Sheaffer.... :( :crybaby:

 

Pelikan might survive in it is owned by a Malaysian billionaire's family...in I'd bet he is dead, After Pelikan went bankrupt the second time, in 1990, he bought it up; saving it...The family may keep it as a prestige item, even if it loses money. 


German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#74 mitto

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Posted 25 September 2018 - 12:03

I don't feel the urge to buy modern Pelikans with hard as nail nibs. The 50s' era Pelikans (140,400 and 400NN) suits me the best.
Khan M. Ilyas

#75 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 25 September 2018 - 19:06

Some folks fear Vintage, thinking they will fall apart. Hundreds of posts on that and even on C/C pens. :unsure:

 

Perhaps they think semi-flex is a 'flex' pen, when all it does is add natural old fashioned fountain pen flair with out doing anything. It's semi-flex actually....and semi or almost is quite far from superflex.

 

All my vintage Pelikans are just fine, two of them are post war...a 100n and Ibis...both of which were made to my surprise up to 1954. Must have 9 or so not counting the 120 or a 400 D nib. Got 5 or 7, '82-90's pens and four or five modern...post '97.

Just sort of fell in my hands over the last decade..I did chase the early '50's...on a tiny budget...so didn't get any...medium-small budget got me plenty.

 

I prefer that era semi-flex for fun, how ever for shading I like the '82-97 and a couple of the other late 1990's pens; regular flex nibs.There F and M are very good, not being as wet as semi-flex. Narrower than modern, with a nice springy ride. I find the gold and steel nibs of that era and the 200 which started in 1985 to be equal as very fine worth having nibs.

 

It all depends on what you want the nib to do...and the willingness to work one's way up the flex  ladder to know what other flexes do do, so one can want with knowing.


German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#76 Marten

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Posted 04 October 2018 - 07:13

Contact The Writing Desk...

Martin will check and test EVERY pen/nib before posting and will also tweak to your requirements at no charge. Slightly more expensive than Cult Pens (And I do mean slightly). For the few extra quid you are paying, you have the peace of mind that you will be getting what you want.

He also offers a nib grinding service at very reasonable prices.

I have ordered two Pelikans in the past from Martin and Anna and have had absolutely NO disappointments...



#77 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 04 October 2018 - 09:45

"""John Sorowka (spelling?) is excellent with nibs. I understand that Omas trusted him with their nib-work in Europe""" John was the man doing Conway Stewart nibs before they went under...Didn't know he was doing Omas also.

 

Another pen repairman/nibmeister is Peter Twydle, son of the great Arthur Twydle, a renown pen master and teacher, who started both his students Jim Marshal and Laurence Oldfield on their great book 'Pen Repair', but died before he could contribute to it. Peter has written a few books himself on pens.

 

I've been to the Lamy factory and seen their testing....I've seen video on the making and testing of other pens. IMO 95% of the problems is the rough handled by man and machine mail, bangs the sales display cased pen around that the tines are jarred out of aliment.

 

All the complaints come from buying by mail.

 

No complaints from testing and buying in a shop.

 

So don't blame the pen, blame the mail.!!!!!!!!

What is needed is a mail proof case.

Gulet(sp) packs his stuff with so much bubble wrap you could drop it from a high flying plane and it would still be good.

Blame the packing of the company mailing.


German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#78 Lord-Spikey

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Posted 09 October 2018 - 08:10

 

How does the Pelikan compare to your Lamy 2000? I'm considering getting a 2000 (although it would be the regular one, not the ss).

Hi John

 

Sorry for the delayed reply.

 

Good question and one that deserves a good reply.

 

I can honestly say that the Lamy 2000SS and the Pelikan M800 are not only different personalities, they are completely different species.

 

My Lamy 2000 is quite a solid and heavy pen. The nib protrudes only a short distance and is quite rigid when writing. It does write very well and is a joy to use.

My Pelikan, on the other hand, is much lighter, has a very pretty gold nib, which does provide some flex and a wetter flow of ink.

My Pelikan provides for a better writing character, with easier variations in line depth and width, whereas the Lamy is more industrial in its approach.

My Lamy is a well oiled machine, whereas my Pelikan is a work of art.

Both pens are beautiful and equally used in my collection.

Personally, for me; I would say if you are thinking of the Lamy, get the stainless steel, or even the half/half (SS body/plastic section). Made with precision and will last a lifetime.

The Pelikan needs an little more care taken with it and could get damaged more easily.


The Pen is Mightier than the Sword.... but I'd rather take my Katana into battle


#79 them700project

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Posted 09 October 2018 - 12:43

I picked up this pen with an EF as My 800 series was only missing that size and it was the only size available on massdrop. I thought it was a bit scratchy at first but it ended up just being a poor ink choice by me. I filled with aurura black and all was good. Writes somewhere between a japanese fine and EF







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: pelikan, m805, m800, gold nib, 18k, fine, medium, alternatives, recommendations



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