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Monteverde Jewelria


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12 replies to this topic

#1 limesally

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Posted 22 August 2007 - 20:02

I've duly read the review guidelines and tried to make note of how others have written their reviews, so here goes!

First Impressions
This was definately an impulse buy. The short version is that I was on holiday with my family in Victoria, BC and it was part of the overall tourist experience. The long version is that I went in intending just to buy ink (and I did), but my husband convinced me to pick out a pen, largely because he'd bought one the day before and the fever was upon him rolleyes.gif . I really did not need another pen, but Jim, the shop owner was friendly and easy going and just sort of waved pretty things in front of me, letting me pet and handle them. The Jewelria caught my eye with the colour and overall feel and weight in my hand. What can I say? I succumbed to tourist impulse shopping.


Appearance and Finish
To my eye, the Jewelria is a *very* pretty pen. I assume resins were used in the manufacture of the glossy black pen body and the swirled, marbled cap. There is an attractive knurled ring on the body where the cap screws on and the rest of the rings on the body and cap are secure and well finished. All the fittings seem well tooled, smooth and secure. The cap screws on and off with 2 1/2 and posts with 2 turns. This can be a bit pesky if you're in a hurry, but once on it is secure and avoids scuffing. The clip is a spring clip. The medium nib is etched "iridium, Germany" with some scroll-y engraving. I understand from reading this forum that this is a pretty generic and unremarkable nib, though nice looking enough.

Design, size and weight
This is the heaviest and largest pen I own at 5 3/8 inches capped and 6 1/2 inches posted, 4 7/8 inches unposted. It has a nice weight in the hand unposted, but feels a bit top heavy posted. I've tried writing with it both ways and think it feels better unposted.

Filling system, nib design and performance
I'm dealing with these at the same time because I had to overcome issues with both of them. My previous experience with fountain pens led me to think that you 1) bought a pen 2) filled with ink 3) wrote happily ever after. This is the pen that led me to looking for information on the internet as to the various ways pens can misbehave, eventually leading to this forum.

The converter looked just like my Pelikan converter, other than being green, and I figured I knew how to use one. The Monteverde converter, however, was difficult to seat and felt a bit loose and wobbly. Initial efforts to fill the pen resulted in a lot of ink/bubbles, but eventually I got it to fill. Writing with the pen went well intially, with the pen laying down a nice wide, wet line. It did feel a bit scratchy, but I've had pens that started out that way and eventually came to behave nicely, so I was not bothered. However, what it did do was occasionally dry off while writing, then suddenly lay down a flood of ink. Some research on the internet made me think that perhaps the vacuum in the converter was being lost, so I tried replacing the converter with a cartridge. The cartridge snapped in firmly and securely with a soft but audible "pop", and I realized that I had not pushed the converter in firmly enough. Writing with the cartridge overcame the flooding issue, as did seating the converter properly. However, I still find that with certain inks still tend to dry off, and need to be pushed into the feed with the converter before flowing well again. This does not happen to all inks, though.

Now that the flow issues were mostly resolved, I continued to play with different inks and paper. The nib seemed to perform differently with every combination I tried, but the paper I most wanted to use it on, Clairefontaine and Hilroy notepaper (for school) resulted in skipping on the downstrokes and making an "S" stroke. This really started to make me nuts, and raise rather resentful feelings towards a pen I wanted to at least like, if not love. There were times it would perform beautifully, it felt good to write with, and I enjoyed using it - then it would betray me with this hateful skipping. I looked carefully through the forum posts for information on nib smoothing, and somewhat with the air of someone headed to the marriage counselor, I pulled out a sharpening stone, wet it, and went at it with gentle firmness unsure.gif
That did the trick, and saved my relationship with this pen. The nib became an absolute pleasure to use and I found myself looking for excuses to write with it. At the moment it is filled with Lamy Turquoise (which behaves well in the converter) and I will probably use it for school notes as the medium nib seems to be just the right size for notes that will be easy to read later.

Cost and value
I paid $99 Canadian for this pen, which is much higher than the on-line prices. However, I'm not really too perturbed for this. As I mentioned before, it was a holiday impulse buy in a specialty store on a piece of prime tourist real estate. It's nice to buy from bricks-and-mortar local stores sometimes, and knowing how much shipping and border fees can bump up the cost of the pen, I don't think it was too bad. But if you can get it from an on-line store for a good price, I think it has pretty good value overall.

Overall conclusion

This may not have been the pen I would have chosen had I done a lot of careful online research and price comparisons. But, it has a special place in my heart for two reasons - it's a souvenir of a lovely family holiday, and it was the pen that forced me to learn something about pens. Though I'm far from an expert, I think it taught me something about how pens work, what problems can be encountered, and how they might be resolved. I really enjoy using it now and expect to continue using it daily. The only paper it doesn't write well on is Moleskine, but since lots of pens don't write well in Moleskine I can hardly count that as a quibble. So after a somewhat rocky start, I think this should continue as a solid and reliable friendship.

eta: sheesh! I can't figure out how to format attached pictures into the body of the post. Sorry for the mess. I think they're pretty self-expanatory, though.

Attached Images

  • monteverde_writing1.jpg
  • monteverde_nibcap.jpg
  • montverde_capped.jpg

Edited by limesally, 22 August 2007 - 20:06.


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#2 PelikanPenman

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Posted 22 August 2007 - 20:08

Nice review, good job fixing your initial issues. I like the silver furniture. Enjoy the pen and treasure the memories.

Cheers.
We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.
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Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities... because it is the quality which guarantees all others.
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#3 Sakura

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Posted 22 August 2007 - 20:25

That's a lovely pen. I hope it brings you much enjoyment. I like to see people toughing out their OTB issues, sometimes there's a little bit of fidgeting to do before it works as expected.

I acquired my Carene the same way you did...in a prime tourist real estate brick-and-mortar (in Europe with hefty TVA added on each item), on vacation, a gift from my husband. We paid far more than I could have gotten the pen on Fleabay, but it's memories we ultimately paid for. It wouldn't be the same if your DH said, "Here, honey, buy yourself a pen, but only after surfing for days on end finding the lowest price. The pen might be used, have issues, and be missing a guarantee, but...Happy [insert occasion here]!"

Not to say I wouldn't ever accept that scenario if it fell my way... biggrin.gif






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#4 limesally

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Posted 22 August 2007 - 21:02

QUOTE(Sakura @ Aug 22 2007, 02:25 PM) View Post
That's a lovely pen. I hope it brings you much enjoyment. I like to see people toughing out their OTB issues, sometimes there's a little bit of fidgeting to do before it works as expected.

I acquired my Carene the same way you did...in a prime tourist real estate brick-and-mortar (in Europe with hefty TVA added on each item), on vacation, a gift from my husband. We paid far more than I could have gotten the pen on Fleabay, but it's memories we ultimately paid for. It wouldn't be the same if your DH said, "Here, honey, buy yourself a pen, but only after surfing for days on end finding the lowest price. The pen might be used, have issues, and be missing a guarantee, but...Happy [insert occasion here]!"

Not to say I wouldn't ever accept that scenario if it fell my way... biggrin.gif


Neither would I! roflmho.gif

I should add that the writing sample is lyrics from "Powderfinger" by Neil Young. I just realized that someone who didn't know that would think I was a wacko.

Also, I meant to add in my original review: many, many thanks to the members of the Fountain Pen Network for all their expertise and advice. I would not have been able to deal with any of the problems mentioned without all the information people have so generously provided. I actually didn't even have to *ask* any questions - they were already here on the forum, to be had for the digging. And without that information, I likely would have become discouraged and just relegated the pen to the back of a drawer.

So a cheer for FPN! All shout huzzah! thumbup.gif

#5 Maja

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Posted 26 August 2007 - 08:07

Thanks for an enjoyable review, limesally! Glad you managed to tame that pesky nib (yes, pens that skip---or don't start up right away---are a huge pen peeve of mine, too). I'm assuming that you bought the pen from Simply the Best? My husband and I were in Victoria about a year and a half ago and dropped by the store on a Sunday afternoon only to find that it was closed....despite the fact that the sign indicated it was supposed to be open. Oh well....

Enjoy your Monteverde Jewelria!
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#6 limesally

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Posted 27 August 2007 - 16:57

QUOTE(Maja @ Aug 26 2007, 02:07 AM) View Post
Thanks for an enjoyable review, limesally! Glad you managed to tame that pesky nib (yes, pens that skip---or don't start up right away---are a huge pen peeve of mine, too). I'm assuming that you bought the pen from Simply the Best? My husband and I were in Victoria about a year and a half ago and dropped by the store on a Sunday afternoon only to find that it was closed....despite the fact that the sign indicated it was supposed to be open. Oh well....

Enjoy your Monteverde Jewelria!


Hi Maja, yes, that was the store. It was not exclusively a pen store - it was more a "fine things for men" store and very masculine - ties, cuff links, shaving sets, etc along with pens. But certainly well stocked with pens and a very friendly owner. It was fun to go in and look around. I'm surprised it was closed on a Sunday afternoon since that's prime tourist time! Did you check out the Papery too? Nice stationary and notebooks in roughly the same area.

#7 Maja

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Posted 28 August 2007 - 18:05

QUOTE(limesally @ Aug 27 2007, 09:57 AM) View Post
QUOTE(Maja @ Aug 26 2007, 02:07 AM) View Post
Thanks for an enjoyable review, limesally! Glad you managed to tame that pesky nib (yes, pens that skip---or don't start up right away---are a huge pen peeve of mine, too). I'm assuming that you bought the pen from Simply the Best? My husband and I were in Victoria about a year and a half ago and dropped by the store on a Sunday afternoon only to find that it was closed....despite the fact that the sign indicated it was supposed to be open. Oh well....

Enjoy your Monteverde Jewelria!


Hi Maja, yes, that was the store. It was not exclusively a pen store - it was more a "fine things for men" store and very masculine - ties, cuff links, shaving sets, etc along with pens. But certainly well stocked with pens and a very friendly owner. It was fun to go in and look around. I'm surprised it was closed on a Sunday afternoon since that's prime tourist time! Did you check out the Papery too? Nice stationary and notebooks in roughly the same area.

No, we didn't get up to the Papery as I wasn't aware the store existed embarrassed_smile.gif
There were tons of antique shops on nearby Fort Street so we hit those, though. Had some good luck finding a restored Eclipse fountain pen at Recollections Antiques so the trip wasn't all for naught... wink.gif
Vancouver (B.C) Pen Club (our website)

#8 finalidid

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 02:28

Just thought I'd chime in here (this is an old thread, but the bulletin-board's software will probably cause people to notice my new post in it, and I hope that's not inappropriate; haven't been here in a while, nice new design!) ...

I recently impulse-purchased a Jewelria 'MINI' fountain pen by Monteverde. I have to concur with all you've said above, about the nib, the writing, and the appearance. But for me, there's another significant issue, which is that the cartridges simply won't stay put inside the pen.

When I made my initial purchase, the pen I got had stripped inner threads along the bottom of the cap. So, I returned it (store was nice) to get a new copy. I now have a pretty little Monteverde Mini Jewelria Fountain Pen. But because I've returned it once already, I don't want to go back to the store to demand a second replacement. They'll start thinking I'm a problem customer! And I like it there! There are a lot of good reasons to stay in their good graces. They still have Waterman green, for example ...

Anyway, the "mini" character of my pen means that I don't get to have a converter. It's too short to fit a "real" converter and, as far as I can tell, Monteverde hasn't made a "mini" converter (nor has anyone else). So, I'm stuck using cartridges. But, the cartridges don't stay put. Basically, if I'm going to use this pen, it's going to have to be right there at the time that I load up the ink tube, and I'm not going to take it anywhere with me, and I'm not even going to lay it down anywhere other than smack dab in the middle of my desk. As long as the nib is pointed roughly downward, gravity will keep the cart inside the pen and engaged to the section properly. But if I jostle it about, then boop the little cart comes flying out, the innards of the pen get filled with ink, and the next time I take the cap off, I get a royal (blue) mess.

So, I'm thinking that of the three pens reported here in this thread, the construction standards are seeming rather low. I got a stripped cap base; and then a cruddy section-to-cartridge joint. The OP got some flow-control and converter issues.

It's still very pretty to look at, and I love the "mini" aspect of it. It's designed such that you have to post the cap onto the pen, in order to write. Without the cap posted onto the pen, the body of the pen would be too short to comfortably hold. This is a design feature that some folks will certainly dislike, but it appeals to my sense of economy and common sense. "What a great way to kill two birds with one stone!" I recall thinking when I saw the intended positioning. Kind of like a Swiss Army knife ... heh ... ;)

I got it with portability in mind, thanks largely to that design. But I ended up with a functionally never-portable pen, thanks to the construction flaws. Too bad. Pleasant excursion none the less, only down US $45 or $50, IIRC.

http://www.monteverd...ewelria_fp.html

PS ... mine's the blue one. :)

Edited by finalidid, 29 November 2009 - 02:32.

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#9 Mauricio

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 04:43

limesally,

Nice review on a lovely pen. I like the ink you used in your written sample. It goes very well with your handwriting. Whicj ink is it? Thanks!
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#10 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 08:37

nice review and nice handwriting :) thanks for sharing
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

#11 limesally

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 18:30

wow, this was very early after joining FPN :) thanks for your additional comments on the mini-version, finalidid. I must say that though I found the mini very cute, I really didn't want to be restricted to cartridges, which is why I went with the full-size instead.

The ink in the sample is Lamy turquoise. I need to buy more - even after trying many other turqs, this one is my favorite. I don't really have this pen anymore - my husband asked if he could trade his Pel M605 with me for it (!!). I kind of miss it, actually.

#12 finalidid

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 22:14

Aha! Shazam!

Mini-sized converter! :)




wow, this was very early after joining FPN :) thanks for your additional comments on the mini-version, finalidid. I must say that though I found the mini very cute, I really didn't want to be restricted to cartridges, which is why I went with the full-size instead.


Edited by finalidid, 29 November 2009 - 22:15.

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#13 Raoulm

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Posted 19 March 2013 - 10:07

I also acquired my Monteverde Jewelria in a similar fashion. I was visiting my niece in Holland, and whilst walking around Delft, just happened top pop into a store to get something to write a thank you note to her in-laws with and saw this beautiful purple cap. It was love at first sight.

I haven't had any problems with it at all, and although I feel the nib is finer than I would have expected for a medium, it is one that I still use most days. If I remember correctly it cost 50 euros about four years ago.

Edited by Raoulm, 19 March 2013 - 10:08.







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