I do not know the exact measurements, but as you can see from the photos, it is a large pen. Not oversize, though. It’s a smidge larger than the Pelikan M800 (in the photo below) all the way around – length and girth – and the nib is a bit longer. Unposted, it feels much like the Pelikan M800 in the hand. Posted, which I do not do, is not a good idea for this pen. For one thing, it is very long, and for another, it does not post all that firmly. I’d guess it was not made to be posted.
This pen is a cartridge/converter. As you can see from the photos, which do not do the it justice, it’s a gorgeous pen.
And it writes like a dream. The Ancora stub nibs do not usually produce too much line variation; they are much more like a sweet, juicy broad nib with a hint of variation. You can see in the pictures how long, lean, and tapered the tines of the nib are. This is what makes Ancora nibs special. They have a kind of “flex” to them that no other pens have (at least none in my experience). This “flex” is difficult to describe, but I put quotation marks around “flex” because it is not flex in the classic sense of the tines separating with downward pressure, producing broader downstrokes and thinner cross strokes. It’s more like both tines in tandem give a bit with every stroke. I imagine that on downstrokes, the tines actually do separate a wee bit, but it cannot be seen with the naked eye.
Again, it is hard to describe the writing experience of Ancora pens, but it’s fair to say that it is very “cushy.” The analogy that keeps springing to mind is when, as a kid, I would ride around in the backseat of our neighbor’s 72 Lincoln Continetal – he drove like a maniac – but there were no such things as rough bumps, only wavelike motions going down the road and around corners.
Another benefit of the Ancora nibs is that the nib and feed assembly unscrew much like nib/feed units from Pelikan, Stipula, and others. (The feed is not ebonite.) Of my many Ancora nibs, I have swapped them in and out of various other pens. Ancora nibs are supposedly well known for QC issues as the nibs are handmade in-house by Ancora. I have had mostly great experiences with Ancora nibs. All the nibs, except one, that came with my pens have written very well from the box. None of them have had major issues. It is true that I have sent a few out to be “tuned” by a nibmeister, but that is because I have found it money well-spent and send many of my pens (Omas, Delta, and Aurora) out to be “tuned.” The nib on this Maxima, however, has proven to be perfect as it came; no need for tuning.
One more thing that I like about Ancora nibs is that I never have exactly the same writing experience with any two of them. There is no radical difference between them, though. Of the six Ancora stub nibs that I have, I’d say the following is true: they are all distinctively Ancora, no two are exactly alike, but all have a ‘family resemblance.’ In my pen collection, I have several Bock nibs and really, really like them. The Ancora nibs, however, are a refreshing change from Bock nibs and well worth a try.
Overall, I am very happy with this pen. It’s a wonderful blue color with a bit of what the kids call “bling.” It’s got a profile that is a departure from most other Ancoras. It’s a wonderful writer, and it’s light.
Edit: Sorry. I forgot to shrink the photos down before posting.
Edited by Sazerac, 24 January 2008 - 08:14.