Hello again to all my FPN friends,
Today the long awaited Penbbs 456 vac-filler arrived in the mail, so I thought I'd give everyone still waiting for theirs on the slow boat from China to see what they have to look forward to. Below are just a few impressions after filling it up and taking it for a test drive.
- The pen just exudes quality! The translucent blue material looks thick and sturdy. The pen just feels very solid and sturdily constructed.
- The 456 is just a tad longer than the 309, but notably heavier due to the additional metal parts (see comparison photos below).
- It posts securely, the most securely of any Penbbs pen I own.
- The clip is one of the best I've seen on a Chinese pen. It's just the right amount of springiness and slides very smoothly only whatever it is clipped too. Unlike previous Penbbs models, the end of the clip isn't just folded over metal, but appears to be a separate piece welded on.
- The vacuum mechanism worked perfectly on the first try and filled up a little more than half the ink chamber with one pump. I'm so happy to have been able to try this filling system without having to pay $70+ for a TWSBI. I've owned TWSBIs before and I'd say the 456 actually feels more solid.
- Although the section threads are metal going against the cap's threaded acrylic, uncapping and capping the pen is very smooth and secure. The metal threads on the section are smooth and I have no problem actually resting my fingers on the threads when writing (something I have to do given the issue below).
- The only negative point for me is the balance. The pen is back heavy even when not posted. This probably won't be an issue for people with larger hands. However, with my small hands I must hold the pen on the section threads in order to obtain a comfortable balance for writing. Otherwise the angle of the pen decreases from how I normally write.
- As for the nib, it's a super smooth two-tone #6 Penbbs nib. It writes a little on the dry side, but the filling method ensures that there's plenty of ink in the feed to keep it going. The nib has the classic Penbbs slight bend to it which can actually make a little bit of line variation, what I would call "semi-architect." Downstrokes are about 0.5mm while sidestrokes can vary from 0.3 to 0.8 depending on the writing angle. Ink fly increases with pressure, but there's nothing in the way of flex.
All in all, I think Penbbs has created their best product yet and can't wait to see what they come up with next!
(from left to right: Pelikan M215, Lingmo Lorelei, Platinum 3776 Century, Penbbs 308, Penbbs 309, Penbbs 456)
(slight line variation between vertical and horizontal strokes)
Edited by TruthPil, 30 October 2018 - 10:22.