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Pilot 100Th Anniversary Meiji-Maru

pilot urushi 100th anniversary maki-e

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12 replies to this topic

#1 jandrese

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 16:22

Here is a look at my Pilot 100th Anniversary Meiji-Maru. This is the Yukari size pen and there were "only" 800 pieces worldwide. Some vitriol has been directed towards Pilot regarding their anniversary offerings. Setting that aside this is a really nice pen. The design is meaningful for Pilot and is straightforward enough for foreigners to understand. There may not be many of these pens available still from ADs. I found one on eBay today at a speculative price of $2600 so it seems I've made a good investment ha ha. Previously, in these pages member Sidd posted his pen and the packaging so please visit his post to see the packaging. For a maki-e pen this represents good value at MSRP. 

 

The maki-e on this pen is really well done, almost to the point of looking artificial, but it was handmade. The details and consistency of the artwork is impressive. Of note is the urushi color. This is a darkish blue that is distinctive in my collection. I reckon Pilot worked up this color specifically for this pen. The base color is not "simply" roiro-magaki, there appears to be fine gold (silver?) dust throughout the base color. It does not sparkle per se but it does pop out some. 

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The Yukari size is not a large pen but it's not small either. I find it comfortable to write with. The body is brass and has some heft without being heavy. The blue in this pen really makes the Taccia blue urushi appear bright.

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Fills via cartridge converter. Ink flow is perfect and ink capacity is plentiful. Note the section and the threads the cap screws onto are plastic. The color is a good match but not perfect.

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The ship the founders served on, the Meiji-Maru. It's on display in Japan and open for visitors. The artwork has energy.

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Mt. Fuji

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Pen is signed Kokkukai, which is guild that does urushi work for Pilot. I don't have a Emperor with maki-e but I suspect Pilot's way is to not have individual artists sign. This is probably the work of several artists anyway each with their own speciality. 

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Urushi Japan, as if we did not know ha ha.

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This is a medium nib and it writes a perfect line the first time every time. A solid reliable writer. What more could one ask for? 

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Ink is Kobe #51 Kano-cho midnight blue not Bungubox! I was confused. Anway, it's a nice compliment to the pen color. 

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I feel fortunate to have gotten this pen. 



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#2 mehandiratta

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 17:53

Lovely

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#3 zaddick

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 19:16

Lovely photos. Thank you for sharing.


If you want less blah, blah, blah and more pictures, follow me on Instagram!


#4 Greenpenman111

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 19:17

I wish the pilot 100 anniversary were more reasonably priced. Nice pen nonetheless.



#5 jandrese

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 22:50

I wish the pilot 100 anniversary were more reasonably priced. Nice pen nonetheless.

 

For what it is the price is reasonable even affordable. For a lower price it would have to be a different pen, which also would have been nice. Many folks seem put out that Pilot did not make a serious effort towards a more affordable pen. Maybe they missed an opportunity. Maybe. Pilot is Japanese and our logic need not apply. I'm also a watch nerd and Seiko/Grand Seiko recent moves in the US market are as baffling as Pilots.



#6 Maurizio

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Posted 06 February 2019 - 23:28

Quite beautiful. Thanks for sharing these nice photos.

I love Pilot pens. I also wish they had produced a more “pedestrian” 100th Anniversary pen for people not willing or able to lay out big bucks for a beautiful pen.

But, I won’t like Pilot, or my nice Pilot pens any less.

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#7 Sakura FP Gallery

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Posted 07 February 2019 - 12:35

Lovely pen !! 


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#8 MalcLee

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Posted 07 February 2019 - 12:55

Looking at Pilots 100th anniversary website - it was heavy on maki-e including a big mention of Dunhill on one of their slides. So I can understand why cheaper anniversary pens werent made for the masses.

It is a very beautiful pen. Enjoy it in good health. And if youre getting one of the 7 gods, Im looking forward to your post for that release.

#9 Mew

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 05:30

I grabbed one from Itoya when it was released. Nice pen, though a bit small for me.

#10 arellano81366

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Posted 25 February 2019 - 21:48

Thanks for sharing with us. I am a Pilot fan but I cannot afford a pen of that price level. Like other voices here, I wish they had given us a pen in the price range of <300 USD. 


Javier

 


#11 raging.dragon

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Posted 02 March 2019 - 20:15

A lot of Maki-e pens cost 10 times more. Pilot were probably compromising on traditional techniques and materials to hit the price point they did with this pen.

 

A tamenuri pilot at half the price of this one would've been nice, but would've been quite similar to production pens from Nakaya and Wancher, and still would've been criticised as too expensive. To hit an even lower price point they probably would've had to either use silk screen printed art, contract the work out to a low wage country, or avoid traditional Japanese arts all together - perhaps one of their standard models made in plain ebonite or with a uniquely coloured resin. 

 

I suspect that Pilot wanted a pen commemorating their history to be both distinctive and incorporate traditional Japanese crafts, and to do so in a way that wouldn't invite criticism for taking excessive shortcuts.


Edited by raging.dragon, 02 March 2019 - 20:15.


#12 MalcLee

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Posted 03 March 2019 - 04:22

 

A lot of Maki-e pens cost 10 times more. Pilot were probably compromising on traditional techniques and materials to hit the price point they did with this pen.

 

I suspect that Pilot wanted a pen commemorating their history to be both distinctive and incorporate traditional Japanese crafts, and to do so in a way that wouldn't invite criticism for taking excessive shortcuts.

 

 

 

I too asked myself this question, especially when Fahrney's offered a 20% off MSRP for this pen - which was very hard  for me to refuse. And like yourself - I wondered if shortcuts were made ie - silk screen printing the art on the Fuji and Meiji-maru given the sheer number of these pens produced by Kokkokai and the MSRP - just didn't make sense. 

 

Pilot Australia's Brand Manager reassured me that the Fuji and Meiji-maru were not silk screen printed but at the same time, without a response on how Pilot Japan could produce something so labour-intensive at the MSRP of USD1600 per pen (for the Fuji and Meiji-maru pen). My theory is that these pens were painted by apprentices of Kokkokai under supervision - just like Seiko's Byakudan-nuri watches made under supervision by a Master nuri-shi.


Edited by MalcLee, 03 March 2019 - 04:25.


#13 John-XXII

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Posted 06 March 2019 - 12:20

Beautiful!!


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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: pilot, urushi, 100th anniversary, maki-e



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