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The Best Fountain Pen


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38 replies to this topic

#21 Inky-Republic

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 10:27

"Sorry, but that says absolutely nothing about what the single best pen is, with one body (of a particular colour, material and finish) and one nib."

 

Well - I never said it did - but those are my criteria in respect to how I'd judge.

 

 
"I don't hate my Leonardo Momento Zero Blue Hawaii, it's nice but not really "€147 nice" and came with an EF nib that was arguably defective or at least irregular, and for the equivalent price of A$240 or less, I've certainly bought "better" pens with steel nibs and "better" pens with gold nibs."

 

I'm sorry Smuggy, but  you must have been sent a crook post-siesta Friday pen, since the one that arrived in my mail box is nothing short of brilliant!  As for 147 euros cost, there's a lot of folks who'd spend double that for a night on the town - and that would be over, done and dusted by the next day!

 

"I cannot name my "best" fountain pen among the 200-odd in my household; if there was one, then I probably wouldn't have bought 200-odd!

As far as I'm concerned, the "best" pen — even subjectively — is most likely one that the maker of the statement has not yet encountered and not yet acquired, just out of reach by virtue of either what's on the market (some functional or qualitative "requirement" of one's ideal still not being met) or the constraints of one's budget. The pen that keeps one from being fully satisfied with what one has got, such that one always feels having to settle for second-best. Accessibility is not, in my opinion, a characteristic of the pen, because the lack of access to (or inability to acquire) a pen is the limitation of the individual. I wish there was actually a "best" pen that is known to all, ticks all the boxes for most, and out of reach to 99.99% of fans, because then people will be largely in agreement (if unhappy about realistically never able to possess that "best" pen)."

 

Perhaps I'm not so hard to please? If I find something that fits my needs perfectly, you can bet I'll stick with it. I currently like to use my Leonardo so much, I purchased three more nibs to put in my other pens - and not one of them has proved to be a disappointment (even though the nibs I purchased are different widths for different purposes). Any more pens I buy will just be for looks or curiosity - as far as usage goes however, I've already  found close to my ideal.



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#22 mke

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 12:22

In the following link, someone asked about " the best nibs" - look at the strange answers: https://www.facebook...23676511098186/

 

Back to the thread here: there is no best fountain pen and there never will be one.

I have a lot of nice and good pens. Depending on the conditions (paper, ink), one of these pen might be performing a bit better than others. If I chose different conditions, it can be totally different.

 

I wish people would let the phrase "this is the best fountain pen" out of their reviews.



#23 A Smug Dill

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 12:26

I wish people would let the phrase "this is the best fountain pen" out of their reviews.

I'm OK with that, actually, because that's more telling on the reviewer's limited (or perhaps changing) landscape in terms of experience with fountain pens. If someone has found "the best" for them, that's great! but it isn't gospel for anyone else, and I don't reasonably expect any reader to be convinced or swayed to share the same belief that the pen being reviews is the best fountain pen under the heavens. It just means someone has arrived at a "local optimum".

Edited by A Smug Dill, 17 May 2019 - 12:29.

As always:  1. Implicit in everything and every instance I write on FPN is the invitation for you to judge me as a peer in the community. I think it's only due respect to take each other's written word in online discussion seriously and apply critical judgment.  2. I do not presume to judge for you what is right, correct or valid. If I make a claim, or refute a statement in a thread, and link to references and other information in support, I beseech you to review and consider those, and judge for yourself. I may be wrong. My position or say-so carries no more weight than anyone else's here, and external parties can speak for themselves with what they have published.  3. I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable. If it is something you can test for yourself and see the results, I entreat you to do so.

#24 BaronWulfraed

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 15:27

The best fountain pen is the pen you don't own...



#25 gary

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 15:54

The best one is the next one.

 

gary



#26 ParkerDuofold

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 18:42

Hi all,

Although it's been said at many times, in many ways...

MODERN: L2K

VINTAGE: Parker 51 Aerometric, (Full Size).


To address the subject of popularity (sales)... I think that would go to the Metropolitan in the "price leader" category... and the L2K in the moderate field...

...that said, I hate the Metropolitan. :D


Be well all. :)


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Grab life with both arms and give it a bear hug every day! :D


#27 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 20:02

Anthony, too bad the nib of either is not what I chase.

I was not use to a rough pen in '67 so never got a 2000 (the few times I did look, no one was selling Gramps pen). I didn't know of the rough MB222 until recently. Didn't mind Bauhaus....not that I'd ever heard of it...............but a roughed up fountain pen was very new to me.....back when the King of Pens was the Snorkel.

 

The P-51 has very good balance, but is on the great whole, a nail. I have one, and for me that was enough.


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.

 

 

 


#28 peroride

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 20:55

 

 

For a price that is the sum of the prices of all six pens you listed, would you buy such a "best pen"?

 

Very good question @A Smug Dill

My answer is irrational. :gaah:  

I should have listened to @Bo Bo Olson and not joined that Pen of the Month Club  :unsure:

 

I would buy the pen but not use it as much for fear of potential maintenance costs. (irrational because my watch is far more costly AND less useful)

 

The precious "Best" would then demote to not "best" for lack of usage. Functional loss leads to devaluation. Even taking it for a fill on occasion would not regain its initial former glory. The scant line mileage however excruciating pleasurable could not exceed the value of decent quality writing in greater quantity from less costly alternatives. 

 

Desire is fickle, endless unsated thirst of suffering samsara.

 

What's that new bird on the Pelikan M705 Holy Enchilada?

 

OMG :yikes: didja see the new Urushi Momento Zero? And Conid's new bulkfiller just came out in that new Titanium Silicone, they're calling it the Turkey Baster!  :lol:

 

For me, "Best" = good enough + a little extra. So actually rather than the sum, the mean average is a better definition of Best for me.

 

That comes out about $300. Knocking off the ends that leaves the Pelikan, Pilot and Parker (i got it used)

 

The fun exercise to refine that trio really jives with my intuitive gut of Best.

 

As been said by others, I too do not believe there is a "Best", try as we may.

 

Though I think the discussion helps uncover lessons that maybe helpful to others or my future self before I press that Buy It NOW button on that near mint über flex Geha 768 ! :o



#29 Karmachanic

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 21:19

It's mine. I have the best fountain pen.


"Simplicate and add Lightness."


#30 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 17 May 2019 - 23:23

über flex ????? Geha 768 !   760""" If the seller has writing looking like superflex from that pen.....the nib might well be sprung. I see a lot of semi-flex nibs over stressed to superflex widths.

Semi-flex is a flair nib....not for fancy writing. Maxi-semi-flex does fancy writing much better....up to 3 X max tine spread.

 

(do take care and don't flex it more than 3 X vs a light down stroke and do strive to get down to less than that, in with a lighter hand, one gets nice flair with out maxing the nib all the time.

Took me some 3 months to go from Ham Fisted to somewhat heavy handed and stop maxing the nib all the time.

Do go to Richard Binder's site and read his article on metal fatigue. I call it how to spring your nib.

I lucked out with a 5 X tine spread superflex in a 100n. After reading Richard, I strive to keep that pen at 4 X as a max............same with all my pens with some or a lot of flex.

 

But '50-60's pens were not superflex, but semi-flex and sometimes maxi-semi-flex....say one in 5.

 

A couple of posters I respect stated that Geha nibs are a touch springier than Pelikans.....so I tested my Geha's vs my Pelikans of that era and it was so.

 

 

I have in standard sized 790 a couple semi-flex and a maxi-semi-flex.

 

My medium-small Geha 760 is not one of the flagship 760's with the gold piston knob, a gray stripped barrelled one with wilder stripes than Pelikan. It is a very nice semi-flex OB. When the 725 came in it replaced the 760 as Flagship.....but was Flagship if it has a gold piston knob band. 

 

Medium-small was very IN in the '50-60's...Pelikan 140, Geha 760, Kaweco Dia, some Osmia/O-F-C pens I have. The Pelikan 140 has a longer cap than the Geha 760, so ends up the same length as a 400 when posted.

 

Buy Now is so, so very Expensive.....if one has patience, they can be had for much cheaper.

 

'Near Mint'.....well if I spend enough time with finger tip polishing with some semi-chrome or Nova polish, I can make a pen look near mint.....if the clip is still fairly good.

A decade ago, there were very many posts of how to make a used pen polish up. But since cheap Chinese pens swamped the market , folks are not spending $20-30 on a vintage pen and making it look good.

Being lazy, I only polished to 'well maintained', instead of NOS.

That one can polish a pen a couple of classes higher than bought has become lost knowledge.

 

I think Stateside inflation has ruined even German Ebay....the Buy Now sellers know what Stateside prices are and will get it.................unless you Hunt.

It is fun Hunting.........spending weeks getting an affordable pen....so one can buy fancy inks and good to better paper.

If you are well to do.....do Buy Now.


Edited by Bo Bo Olson, 17 May 2019 - 23:26.

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.

 

 

 


#31 Honeybadgers

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Posted 18 May 2019 - 01:31

The best pen for me is a pen almost nobody bought and is generally not well regarded. The visconti divina metro in stacked green celluloid and sterling silver inlay with a 23k palladium nib.

 

800_visconti_Metro_GreenFP1.jpg

 

The stacked green celluloid looks like a skyscraper at night when you hold it up and rotate it. It's possibly the most beautiful object I've ever seen.

 

But it's a midi size. It's a thousand dollars. It uses a captured converter. If you don't regularly grease the lip between the nib and the celluloid it will suck ink into that gap which cannot be cleaned and ruin the pen. And Visconti's quality control on nibs is kind of abhorrent. 

 

But it's like having a two year old. Really annoying a lot of the time. But if you tried to take it away from me, I'd kill you.


Edited by Honeybadgers, 18 May 2019 - 01:32.

Selling a boatload of restored, fairly rare, vintage Japanese gold nib pens, click here to see (more added as I finish restoring them)


#32 Lloyd

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Posted 18 May 2019 - 01:32

The one I'm convinced I need to buy next.


"Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination."
Oscar Wilde

#33 pankaj

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Posted 18 May 2019 - 05:33

The one I'm convinced I need to buy next.

+1



#34 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 19 May 2019 - 09:03

That Visconti sounds like it should be sent to a major repairman, even before use. It is a very pretty pen.


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.

 

 

 


#35 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 19 May 2019 - 12:04

So far my two conklin modern nozacs

33779220598_81b326cd63_z.jpg

46932670574_f2ce6163b0_z.jpg


Pens are like watches , once you start a collection, you can hardly go back. And pens like all fine luxury items do improve with time

#36 Jebus

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Posted 19 May 2019 - 20:59

I have wondered about this question too but can not come up with an answer that's suitable for me. 

 

Perhaps this is my best shot on a defintion of "the best pen" in my small world: my "best pen" changes from time to time within the boundaries of my very limited collection. And that particular thing makes the fountainpen stuff oh so interesting...


There are more things in heaven and earth, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

#37 Mangrove Jack

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 10:04

Having read the original post on this thread a few days ago and having contributed to the thread soon after, the subject has been giving me some food for thought. Whilst everyone knows that there is really no "best pen", I am sure some of you have a "favorite pen". Maybe this favorite pen gets as close to a best pen as possible.

In my case a Pelikan M200 that I acquired some years ago has been always inked and lying around for ready use. Even when I rotate pens I keep the Pelikan exempt.

It may not have the most comfortable grip, the best balance or is the nicest looking of my pens, it does not have the smoothest nib either, and is certainly not the most expensive, ......... but there is something about it that makes me reach for it most of the time. It is a good example of the statement "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts". It's the closest to being a best pen for me.

Edited by Mangrove Jack, 20 May 2019 - 10:13.


#38 Reed_thoughts

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 13:54

The best pen? Surely has to be the one i own.



#39 BaronWulfraed

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 18:53

The best pen? Surely has to be the one i own.

My condolences on only having one pen :lol:








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