I think Pen Chalet replaced the nibs and feeds on the affected pens that were returned, then sold the pens as "used" at a steep discount, since I found three for sale on their website, with original packaging, box and papers, for only $52 each. I would have preferred the gray/smoke model but had to settle for the clear body as that was what they had with an M nib.
- The good: the M nib writes very well and wet, like a European M, and the girth of the section gives me an excellent grip that is not affected by the presence of the clip or the nub at the bottom that is part of the trapdoor mechanism. I ultimately sold off my Pilot VP (the old faceted model) because the clip bothered me so much, so I do appreciate the unencumbered grip here.
- The bad: the transparent injection-molded plastic body that resembles that of a hundred cheap Pentel ballpoints or gel pens just screams "cheap."
- The ugly: the shiny metal components visible through the clear plastic body look like they are not actually metal but metal-colored plastic, yet another connotation of cheapness. I believe they really are made of metal, but I wish the plating did not make them appear this way.
- The wild and weird: the surprisingly byzantine complexity of the nib-retracting mechanism, as well as the contortions one must go through in order to fill the pen. If the goal was to target first-time pen users, this filling process will turn them off fountain pens for good. Only hardcore pen-geeks will enjoy the steps involved in partially disassembling the pen, then filling it, then reassembling the fiddly bits.
Coupled with the strange lack of the customary 20% online discount at launch and the cracked-feed issue with the early batches, I see this pen as a giant fail, not only when it comes to marketing but (unfortunately) even when it comes to engineering design. There is no excuse for such a complicated filling process when Platinum's own 1960s design is cleaner and simpler. I can only conclude that Platinum was intent on not infringing on any of Pilot's patents, leading to this Rube Goldberg mechanism.
And yet, I admire the sheer demented wackiness of the nib-retraction mechanism and the filling process! I think the pen could have done better if it were given a gold nib, a non-transparent body of "precious resin" with the same fiddly mechanism but priced at $500 and pitched to pen geeks as a "limited anniversary edition" of "only" 2020 made.
Edited by ParkerBeta, 26 June 2020 - 04:32.