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Levenger True Writer - Kyoto

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13 replies to this topic

#1 Opus104


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Posted 23 June 2007 - 20:08

I just received my Levenger True Writer. I was a little nervous given some spotty reviews historically, but could not be more pleased. 4.5 of 5 for me!!

First Impressions

The Levenger box is a nice, understated presentation case. The tan Ultrasuede lining really sets off the Kyoto color. The pen itself is an eye-catching color with lots of variation. The plastic seems substantial and looks "rich".


I just love the depth of color in this pen. It is an acrylic resin that gives off a quartz-like sheen. It really is a precious looking finish. The chrome accents actually go well with the pen. The folded plate clip is functional, but clearly does not look solid. The black "jewels" look fine and fit well. I think the twist cap is fine. Some have been concerned with the 2+ turns to remove the cap, but I do not find that an issue at all.


I have to say, this stainless Schmidt nib is great. A quick soapy water flush, and it writes like a champ. I initially had a medium, which was finer than my Waterman medium but still a little thick. I stopped by my local (Chicago) Levenger store for an exchange to a fine. My first fine was a little juicy and wide still, so I swapped it out again with no problem. Get this: the nibs screw in like my Pelikans. I can even get extras for $24. all of the nibs I tried are smooth, skip free and a pleasure to write with. I enjoy the simple Levenger design.


The cartridge/converter system is standard. Everything works great. you can double-stack the standard cartridges so that an extra is always available. The Levenger Cocoa ink is a perfect companion to the Kyoto. There is a real sophistication to the combination.


Fantastic deal at $56 ($6 shipping, including ink cartridges). I would recommend this as a great pen to always have available. I am relatively new to regular fountain pen use, and this is a great starter pen.







Edited by Opus104, 14 July 2007 - 23:55.

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 20:21

Nice review and nice looking pen! I thought most true writers were solid colored.


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#3 bdngrd



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Posted 23 June 2007 - 20:27

I have one of these as well and can't say enough about the look, the reliability and the value of these pens. The kyoto is the best looking of all of the colors, IMHO. Thanks for the review!

Edited by bdngrd, 23 June 2007 - 20:27.

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#4 Pengrump



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Posted 23 June 2007 - 20:54

I have a Kyoto True Writer as well. Have had it for about a month and use it regularly. Very pretty pen, writes well, and was fairly cheap. Didn't have to pay shipping because I picked it up in the Boston Levenger store.

Thanks for the review. I'm glad you like the pen too.

#5 jonro



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Posted 23 June 2007 - 21:03

This was the first fountain pen I bought for myself and was a great pen to start with -- and to continue with. Many pens later, it is still a valued member of my collection.

#6 JeremyVail


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Posted 01 January 2009 - 16:08

I love the color of the kyoto, but could NOT keep it from drying out. I sent it back and tried a second, with the same problem. I sent it back and got the Levenger Plumpster instead (because it has a different nib than several of their pens which share the TrueWriter nib).
Read the reviews on their site; you might get one that works, but there's a good chance a new TrueWriter will not.

#7 louie24



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Posted 01 January 2009 - 17:00

QUOTE (JeremyVail @ Jan 1 2009, 05:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I love the color of the kyoto, but could NOT keep it from drying out. I sent it back and tried a second, with the same problem. I sent it back and got the Levenger Plumpster instead (because it has a different nib than several of their pens which share the TrueWriter nib).
Read the reviews on their site; you might get one that works, but there's a good chance a new TrueWriter will not.

I read the reviews on their site before I bought mine. Since Levenger sells a lot of other products, I wondered how many of the negative reviews of the TW were written by people who were not regular FP users, and didn't realize the cartridge had run out, feed had been clogged by dried out ink, etc. . . No way to really know. But for that reason, I trust the reviews here more.

edit: ps- no problems here, after 1 week of use.

Edited by louie24, 01 January 2009 - 17:02.

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#8 vonderlasa



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Posted 01 January 2009 - 19:25

My Levenger True Writer is a pen found at my office. No one wanted it except me, so I claimed it, cleaned it, and it would dry up in less than a minute. Re-cleaned it, no change. The I found FPN and found the magic solution: a drop of liquid dishwashing detergent in the convertor, and now it writes smoothly, first stroke, without flow problems, and can sit in a draw for a few days and write immediately. And although the band fell off the cap, with the advice found in another thread, I can fix that problem too. Thanks FPN!

#9 ImNotSam



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Posted 30 July 2010 - 19:38

Two for two with True Writers ... am I just lucky?

I recently crossed my fingers (after reading all the problems cited both here and in the Levenger reviews) and ordered a True Writer in Sea Glass, B nib. It was ... okay ... until I flushed the whole thing with soapy water and started over. It became - fabulous.

So, pushing my luck, I ordered a Kyoto, also with a B nib.

Just showed up at my door. Pretty! Pretty! Pretty! This time, I flushed with the soapy water right off the bat. Filled it with ku-jaku (matches the turqoise flecks).

And now ... pen to paper.

It glides. I don't even have to take it to the micromesh woodshed to teach it how to behave. It's really, really nice. Perfectly smooth nib, generous ink flow, eye candy colors.

Either I got lucky or maybe Levenger is doing something positive with its quality control. Whatever the reason, I've lucked out. No frantic scribbledy scratch scratch shake shake. No where's-mu-brass-shim-stock. No where's my loupe (or fly-tying glasses. No drama. Just a pretty pen that works well and didn't require a second mortgage to finance. What's not to like?*

*Pens with broad nibs need refilling awfully quickly, and converters/carts don't hold as much ink as Other Types of Filling Systems but - (shrugs) I can live with that. :)

#10 stacybean


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Posted 30 July 2010 - 20:36

I have a bunch of True Writers. I like their weight, balance and colors.They were my starter pens and I prefer to have them in my backpack in a pen case (with a Stipula Castoni stub nib (steel) and a Cross ATX (anyone remeber the plastic ones) rather than he pens I can't replace (Large MontBlanc Boheme,Pelikan M805,Krone Boulder,Waterman Rhapsody..)

#11 cuza



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Posted 30 July 2010 - 21:34

I really like the looks of my Kyoto...kinda Esterbrookish. Simple, appealing and comfortable. I just wish they had better nibs. Something gold and with a wee bit of flex would do.

-- cuza

#12 lovemy51


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Posted 02 August 2010 - 08:40

i have one of these Kyotos and pretty much like everything about the pen until it comes to the nib. it does have a bit of spring, but the quality is not there. it came with a broad that was dry and a little scratchy. it took some tuning, tweaking, grinding and smoothing to get it to write like i wanted!! sheesh!!!

#13 MarkAL


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Posted 13 August 2010 - 13:13

I have a True Writer Obsidian which I love. Its totally reliable and writes well even after sitting around all summer. I use it as my score marking and grading pen and keep it inked with PR Fiesta Red. It's been nothing but terrific.

#14 revbyrd1


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Posted 20 August 2010 - 22:59

I have several Levenger True Writer Fountain Pens and am very pleased with them. I have F, M, and B nibs and find them to write wonderfully. I have ordered numerous items from Levenger and have been pleased with anything that I have bought from them!

My favorite thus far has been the Golden Tortoise with a F nib.

Thank you for the excellent review.

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