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Platinum Procyon Review

platinum procyon platinum procyon japanese fine review deep sea

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20 replies to this topic

#1 Caeruleum

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 18:24

First of all I want to mention this review by FPN user sova featuring stunning photos of the Turquoise blue Platinum Procyon.
 
In my opinion the Platinum Procyon receives less attention than it deserves, thus I decided to write a review. I want to provide some information, share my experience using it daily and also take a look at why it might be not hugely popular.
 
Body.jpg
 
 
Introduction
This review is meant to depict my personal opinion and valuation, thus I don't want to use points to rate aspects. Surely comparability is an advantage which makes using points worth considering, but neither am I an expert for the standards used nor could I compare a pen to dozens of first hand experiences with other pens. And frankly speaking in my eyes many reviews aren't objective which to me relativises the value of scores. Because of that I will try my best to describe my experience with this Procyon in a way which allows you to contrast it to your experiences and preferences.
Platinum introduced this model in the summer of 2018 and named it after Procyon, the brightest star in the constellation of Canis Minor who in turn got its name from rising before Sirius, the brightest star visible in the night sky. Sirius is also known as dog star. Procyon stands for a distant relatives of dogs, too, the racoon. Hopefully the pictures I took will remind you more of a clear night sky than a racoon however.
 
Laquer Detail2.jpg
 
 
First Impressions
My pen came in a black carboard box along with four cartridges. Platinum specially created three inks called Gold Ochre, Aqua Emerald and Dark Violet which accompanied the Procyon along with a instruction on how to recreate them yourself and a regular blue-black cartridge. Unfortunately this pen doesn't include a converter.
The packaging is utilitarian, the unique ink cartridges are nice but I would have prefered a converter.
This pen comes in five colours called Deap see, Porcelain white, Turquoise blue, Persimmon orange and Citrus yellow ranging from understated to pretty colourful. The dark blue doesn't attract attention, taking a closer look however reveils its twinkling. According to Platinum this colour is inspired by the deep sea, I link it to the stars. It has about the size of a Lamy Safari and feels solid.
 
Special Cartridges2.jpg
 
 
Appearance & Construction
The Procyon's body and cap are made from laquered aluminium. The Deap See's base layer is of deep blue on which aluminium flake powder was added which gives the blue depth and creates twinkling. In a dark environment the sky-laquer of this pen resembles a starless night, with more light it becomes reminiscent of a clear night which allows one to see thousands of stars.
The white one's laquer is smooth and shiny while the colourful versions feature matte laquer.
The trim is silver coloured. "Procyon" and "Platinum Made in Japan" are written on the cap in capital latters.
Its grip is made from semi-translucent dark grey plastic. Metal threads on both the grip and the body make a stury, long-lasting impression. Furthermore the threads are rectangular making them pleasant to touch.
 
Cap Detail2.jpg
 
 
Usually the nib has a good chance to be the most interesting part and I don't want to say this one isn't but it isn't spectacular visually. It looks similar to nib the Preppy, Plaisir and Prefounte use but is larger. It lacks a breather hole and adornment is limited to Platinum's logo and a F or M indicating the nib size.
Platinum proudly advertised this pen's new feed as it is able to draw ink from a hole below the nib at about half of the nib's length. This allows you to more easily fill your pen and use up bottled ink because to don't need to insert the entire nib into ink. Cleaning the pen after filling thus also becomes easier.
 
Feed2.jpg
My feed shows signs of Sailor Seiboku. Usually its black and clean.
 
Besides this the Procyon also features the inner cap known from the 3776 Century which is supposed to prevent ink from drying out for up to two years. I didn't test that but notice its effect in comparison to a Waterman Hemisphere for example which lacks a inner cap. In the Hemisphere ink becomes less keen for writing for the first few letters after a day. Thanks to the inner cap this is no problem with the Procyon even with more difficult inks.
Two things I don't like: I find the grey material below the semi-translucent plastic of the grip makes this part a bit cheap. I carry my pen in a pencil case in which there is no scissors, only pencils, two ballpoints and markers and treat it carefully but at the end of the barrel the laquer is coming of where the barrel transitions into the end finial as well as in one place on the barrel. That's disappointing to me and makes me apprehensive of the laquers future.
 
Damaged Laquer 1-2.jpg Damaged Laquer 2-2.jpg
 
 
Nib and Performance
The nib is made from steel. Platinum claims the pentagon shape makes writing feel similar to a gold nib without much explanation of what exactly they imply. It is not soft or flexy but very stiff. As you might expect from a Japanese nib it runs relatively fine. The nib provides some even feedback and is audible when writing. It has medium flow and works very reliably, starts easily every time and feels controlled to me. There is no beautiful adornment but it works.
Reverse writing is possible, makes for a very fine line. The flow keeps up well.
 
Scan_20200328-01.jpg
 
 
Filling System and Maintenance
Platinum uses a proprietary cartridge/converter system. I find their cartridges and converters to be of high quality and work reliably. While the cartridges contain quite a lot of ink I wished for a bigger converter.
As I mentioned above there is no converter included. The converter's mouth is reinforced by a metal collar.
 
Cost and Value
The Procyon retails for around 50 US Dollars to 70 Euros. This makes it one of the more expensive steel-nibbed pens and maybe also is the reason it is less often recommended than other competitiors. There is a lot of competition in this price range. Lamy and Pilot for example both offer several pens up to this price range and at least in Europe you are also able to get a Pelikan M200 for this price. Additionally the Procyon will also compete with its new sibling, the Curidas.
I think this Platinum has a lot to offer: a very reliable nib, good size and weight generally speaking, a handy feed, an excellent inner cap and a sturdy body. Its features are very reasonable and utilitarian, but maybe not flashy enough to stand out.
 
Conclusion
If you are looking for a understated, reliable next-level pen to accompany you in daily life and like its design, you will probably soon appreciate its qualities.

Edited by Caeruleum, 28 March 2020 - 20:09.


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#2 OCArt

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 18:59

Very nice review, thanks for doing this and for the links.  I'd love to see a microphotograph of the pentagon nib if anyone has the capabilities.

 

P.S. I picked up a <$15 Platinum Prefounte and was surprised by how nice the nib was.


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#3 WLSpec

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 19:04

Well done, fantastic images.


Edited by WLSpec, 28 March 2020 - 19:04.


#4 Qoan

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 19:53

Thanks for the amazing review and the impressive pics. 

 

This has become one of my favourite pens. The nib is smoother and less springy than that of the Preppies/Plaisirs/Prefountes and appears to be more reliable. I do like relatively dry pens (as I'm an overwriter and I write relatively fast) so Platinum pens generally suit me. The pen is very solid and the screw-on cap is also a big plus for me. 

 

I carry it in a leather pencil roll pouch, together with some other pens and I haven't had any issues with visible scratches or the lacquer falling off so far (I've owned it for about 9 months now) but knowing that I'll try to be careful in the future.



#5 jchch1950

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Posted 29 March 2020 - 05:52

The falling of the lacquer at the finial is something to worry about.They should be built with a minimum quality.


Edited by jchch1950, 29 March 2020 - 10:12.


#6 TheDutchGuy

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Posted 29 March 2020 - 06:43

Thanks for this thorough review! I enjoyed reading it.



#7 Caeruleum

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Posted 29 March 2020 - 08:00

Very nice review, thanks for doing this and for the links.  I'd love to see a microphotograph of the pentagon nib if anyone has the capabilities.
 
P.S. I picked up a <$15 Platinum Prefounte and was surprised by how nice the nib was.

Thanks for the compliments. Here is a close up of the nib. I'm sorry for how dirty it looks, I'm currently using it.

sova took great photos you can see in this thread.

 

 

IMG_9580.JPG


Edited by Caeruleum, 29 March 2020 - 09:48.


#8 Braxfield

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 17:53

Excellent review.  I enjoyed reading it while waiting for my already-ordered Procyon to arrive from California.   Fortunately there was nothing in your study to make me doubt my selection - not even the finial scuffing because I tend to carry pens in a tubular, cigar-style case. 

 

I do have two comments-

 

1.   I love the pen.  The only "flaw" that I can find (and it's hardly a flaw) is that the word "Procyon" on the pen cap is not centered on the clip.   It surprised me only because everything else is achieved with such precision.  Fortunately this is not visible when using the pen otherwise it might slowly drive me nuts.  

 

2.   I don't normally use cartridges but--for some reason--I have a soft spot for Platinum cartridges.  I like their lines!  I saw recently on a pen site (JetPens) that J. Herbin cartridges (or at least the CreaPen type) also fit the Procyon.   That surprised me because I always thought Platinum was "proprietary" whereas Herbin's were "universal standard".    Has anyone tested the Herbin cartridges in the Procyon? 

 

I am hoping to see the Persimmon finish "in-person" some day.  It's a peculiar color which I think I would like if it were on the orange end of the spectrum but not if it tended towards the pink.  Despite peering at numerous online images I just can't be sure. 

 

I find it interesting that the Procyon seems to have held its price well since it was launched.  Also that the slightly eccentric colour range has not been extended. 


"They come as a boon and a blessing to men, 
the Pickwick, the Owl and the Waverley Pen."


#9 Honeybadgers

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 22:23

I hope they fix the paint problems. My blue one is HEAVILY scratched through to the primer and it's never seen anything worse than a metal-object-free pocket.


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


#10 OCArt

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 22:33

Thanks for the photo and the link to the other review!

Thanks for the compliments. Here is a close up of the nib. I'm sorry for how dirty it looks, I'm currently using it.

sova took great photos you can see in this thread.

 

 

attachicon.gif IMG_9580.JPG


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"Pens a'plenty in 2020" Chuck Montano from The Nib Section podcast


#11 MuddyWaters

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Posted 12 April 2020 - 02:54

I hope they fix the paint problems. My blue one is HEAVILY scratched through to the primer and it's never seen anything worse than a metal-object-free pocket.


Contact the company and tell us what they say

Link to a post about ergonomics I made: http://www.fountainp...with/?p=4179072


#12 Caeruleum

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Posted 12 April 2020 - 07:25

I hope they fix the paint problems. My blue one is HEAVILY scratched through to the primer and it's never seen anything worse than a metal-object-free pocket.


I would love to see some pictures as well. Would be interesting to see what it looks like then.

#13 Honeybadgers

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Posted 12 April 2020 - 08:39

Contact the company and tell us what they say

 

I got mine in a trade (it was NIB, but I didn't buy it from a retailer) so I wouldn't expect them to help.


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


#14 Braxfield

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Posted 17 April 2020 - 01:14

Would a micro-crystalline wax polish (eg Renaissance) protect the finish of this pen from abrasion of the sort that some users have described?

 

If so, is there any reason not to use such a product? 


"They come as a boon and a blessing to men, 
the Pickwick, the Owl and the Waverley Pen."


#15 mad_pharmacist

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Posted 18 April 2020 - 00:14

I picked up one with a fine nib yesterday.  I would have liked a medium nib, but for a Japanese fine nib, this one writes smoothly.  I think a slightly wetter ink works better with this pen.



#16 Braxfield

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Posted 02 May 2020 - 01:32

Well, as no-one told me not to, I went ahead and applied a layer of Renaissance museum wax to my Procyon (Deep Sea).   That's the polish that museum's use to protect swords and such.

 

My thinking is it may prevent the kind of scuffs that others have endured.  

 

I must say, I've been using the Procyon every day for the last month or so and I can detect no surface erosion at all -- and that was without the polish.  However I don't carry it around loose in a pocket. 

 

Overkill?  Probably.  


"They come as a boon and a blessing to men, 
the Pickwick, the Owl and the Waverley Pen."


#17 Caeruleum

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Posted 30 May 2020 - 19:16

Good to hear, Braxfield.

Does this wax change how the pen feels?



#18 Braxfield

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Posted 06 June 2020 - 04:12

Hi Caeruleum,

In answer to your question, no, Renaissance wax did not affect the feel of the pen in the hand.  When I first applied the wax I had a sense that it might have deepened the color ever so slightly (my pen is in the so-called Deep Sea finish).  However not having a control on hand I couldn't really tell.

 

Did it protect the pen?   Up to a point, I think it did.

I have used the pen every day for two months, April and May 2020.   I've gone through two cartridges of black carbon ink, and have just started the third.  The  pen has been in a single leather pen tube, a shirt pocket and has rolled around on an old oak veneer desk.  The cap is on and off every few minutes, scores of times each day.  I've written a few letters with it but the main use is making notes and annotations.  It's a workhorse with a skittish foal of a nib.  Medium.  I find it slightly springy, almost playful.  I'm not sure that everyone has had the same experience.   I've only ever used the Plat Carb ink.  I write on many grades of paper, Japanese writing papers, Tomoe River of different weights, as well as dismal copy paper.

 

The cap and barrel show no scratches or abrasions EXCEPT in one specific location.  If I look at the barrel finial under magnification I am beginning to see an abrasion around the edge of the finial.   It is barely visible with the naked eye, except for the occasional glint in certain light. Either the wax has failed to protect this edge or I failed to apply wax to the edge itself.   I have only ever applied wax once.

 

On a separate note, once when absent mindedly opening the pen, I somehow managed to loosen the cap finial.  A few more turns and it came off in a single piece.  It is easily put back but this discovery opened up the possibility of swapping out end finials.   Deep Sea White Top anyone, or custom Persimmon tip?   Be warned. Be prepared.  Apologies to purists, naturally, for even mentioning such depravity in print.  But where there's a mix there's a match. 


"They come as a boon and a blessing to men, 
the Pickwick, the Owl and the Waverley Pen."


#19 Braxfield

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Posted 06 June 2020 - 04:15

Follow up question.  I get the impression that the different finishes to thw Procyon have markedly different compositions.  Can anyone describe or characterize the white finish?  I think this might be my next.    Still no sign of a second generation of colors, to augment the original line-up. 


"They come as a boon and a blessing to men, 
the Pickwick, the Owl and the Waverley Pen."


#20 gmax

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Posted 06 June 2020 - 13:17

The blue-black finish has a slight matt texture, with a flecked appearance as shown by the OP.

 

The white finish is pure white, smooth, and glossy - what some manufacturers would call a "piano white" finish.

 

Both of mine have had only very light use, so I haven't seen any damage or wear to the finish.


Edited by gmax, 06 June 2020 - 13:18.






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: platinum, procyon, platinum procyon, japanese, fine, review, deep sea



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