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Kaweco DIA


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#1 kiavonne

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Posted 31 August 2008 - 00:34

Disclaimer: I'm a lousy macro photographer with this camera, please forgive my less than stellar attempts. Todd at ISellPens is much better at it than I am, I'm afraid. Also, I'm not affiliated with ISellPens, except that I've been a happy repeat customer for many pens, including my Pelikans and my Bexleys as well as a few unknowns.

To be honest, I did not want to like this pen. I seriously did not want this pen to be a good pen. I do not know why. Maybe because it is black with silver-toned accents and I prefer gold, but the gold accents in this pen held no appeal to me, either. Or, maybe I did not want something... ordinary. I bought the pen in my hunt for less expensive, good writing pens that I can use without reservation and be happy with the writing experience in this day of the shrinking dollar, as well as recommend as a good starter pen to students, coworkers, etc.

Well, shoot me. I like this pen.


KAWECO DIA

First impressions

The box is nothing fancy at all. Just a plain, simple, black velvet pen gift box. Inside, the first glimpse of the pen was, "oh, ok." Again, nothing that jumped out at me to make me think this pen was anything special.




Appearance

Gotta use it: Classic black, with silver accents.

The pen is sleek and appealing.

The clip is the fanciest part of this pen, and it is quiet in itself. It has very simple curves, with a few simple lines engraved that vaguely said to me, "art nouveau." It is a heavy clip, without sharp edges to catch on fabrics knit, linen, leather or otherwise. The flash on my camera makes it look like there are wide, grooved metal bands on the pen, when actually it is just the flash reflecting on the grooves carved into the black finish. The silver bands are a double band at the caps edge, one very thin band at the bottom of the pen, a wider band at the top of the section, and a small double band just at the base of the nib. It's actually very simple and very nice styling. The "jewel" on the cap is a small, silver disc engraved with the Kaweco tri logo, and is raised very slightly in the center. Kaweco DIA Germany is engraved on the back of the cap near the clip band and is not as noticable as the flash on my camera would make it.


Design/size/weight

I think the DIA flows along the same lines as the old-style Mseries Pelikans, not quite as flashy and more quiet compared to the moden Pelikans. It is only a tad longer than my M600, and slightly less in girth. It posts very well, and is not unbalanced when posted. As for weight, I'd say it is just a smidge heavier than my M600, but not by much. The DIA retains it's own identity in the grooved style bands. The cap is solid, and it is a snap cap, not threaded. It snaps into place with a firm click, and it doesn't move about at all. It stays put when posted, as well.

This is a picture of the pen sandwiched between my "old-style" M150 and my M600 Pelikans to give a size comparison (finally, an almost decent picture from my camera):





Nib

This is a fine, steel nib, nicely engraved with a simple design and the Kaweco tri logo. It is the rigid nib with little or no flex, but it does not feel stiff. It writes without hiccups and stutters, but then I've just gotten the pen and we'll see how it holds up. Right now, I like how it writes. Smooth is an overused word, but it fits. I can feel the paper, but it is not a toothy or scratchy feeling at all. I simply know that I am putting ink to paper, without effort. I won't say it glides, it is just "right," and I have no other adjective to describe it at the moment. The tines appear to be perfectly aligned. The line it lays down, to me, is between a fine and medium line, with a slant to the fine. I like it.

This is not a good picture of the nib, but the Kaweco page the ISellPens link above has an excellent nib shot.





Filling system

Cartridge/converter. It uses standard international cartridges, short or long, and it came with a standard plastic piston converter. This pen, though, just begs to be a piston filler. Ah, well.


Cost

A moderate (my definition of moderate) $65. It's a size comparable to the M600 Pelikan with an M200 price (actually less than the M200 now). The only drawback in this comparison being the DIA is a cartridge/coverter pen, and the M200 a piston filler. Nonetheless, this is a good, solid pen under $100 that should last and keep one with comfortable company through many a school class or business meeting.


Conclusions

I think this is where I have to come to terms with my disdain of "classic black pens." Up until now, the only all-black pen I was carrying around was my VP in black with gold trim. I have stayed far away from black pens with silver accents. These pens, these "classic black pens," are the ones I always perceived to be used by the bankers, the lawyers, and the feds. Huh. Can we say, "red tape," "bureaucracy," and "snooty?" That's just how I saw it growing up. A lot of money and reputation with nothing but a "classic black pen" to back it all up, using it with flourish to sign the deeds and contracts, but giving the customer the cheap promo ballpoint with the company name misprinted on the barrel for a souvenir. Yeah. Ok. Breathe.

This pen is the "classic black pen" without being in-your-face snobbery. This is the pen of the true mind and worker, the new college professor vs the been-there-forever university dean, the small town mayor vs The Hill, the local credit union vs Chase Manhattan, the serious grad student at State vs the Ivy League diploma floating by on old money. All done with quiet class. Ok, it's a "quiet, classic black pen." Similar to the Pelikan, but in a class by itself, and one I would be confident in carrying to my next class or meeting without threatening either the goth chick next to me or the tenured professor lecturing in front of me. It's a pen to get the job done effortlessly and without any preconceived status baggage. (No offense was meant to any university deans, congressional members, Wall Street, or Ivy League alumni - it's just a comparison in my own, opinionated mind.)

Uh, I did add my own fun, though. Since I received a bottle of Noodler's Navajo Turquoise from Todd in the same shipment...

It is now my quiet, classy black pen, with a little glimmer of mischief included.

This pen has grown on me.


Edited by kiavonne, 31 August 2008 - 04:47.

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#2 lovemy51

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Posted 31 August 2008 - 06:22

thanx for the review. this is in my wishlist!!!

#3 Ondina

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Posted 31 August 2008 - 06:33

Your reviews are always a pleasure to read. So very informative. And I do think your pics are verrrrry good smile.gif
Thanks.

#4 hardyb

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Posted 31 August 2008 - 17:34

I bought one of the black and gold versions. Love it! Writes so well it just hurts and I like the old fashioned look of the design. Understated.
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#5 tknechtel

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Posted 31 August 2008 - 17:50

Wonderful review of a sleeper of a pen! I've had one for a couple months, and it's a good workhorse.

#6 hagna

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 02:00

QUOTE (tknechtel @ Aug 31 2008, 11:50 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Wonderful review of a sleeper of a pen! I've had one for a couple months, and it's a good workhorse.



My Kaweco DIA with F nib using cross ink is a lot drier looking than that. It skips with quick movements too. You can see the lamy safari and hero 200a both look better http://drop.io/fount.../asset/pens-jpg on paper. I got my DIA from isellpens.com

#7 lovemy51

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 07:24

still in my wishlist!! embarrassed_smile.gif

#8 andyk

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Posted 25 July 2009 - 17:57

Hi,

Nice review didn't realise they still made pens, I have a couple of vintage ones from when they made piston fillers which are very nice writers.

I am now prompted to search and see if they still make piston fillers.

Andy

#9 dandelion

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 00:13

Interesting! That is a pen I'd like to try! I like your handwriting - it suits the ink very well.
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#10 Ledjeffelin

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 14:28

This is a snap cap so have you been able to determine if the threads serve any purpose? That has kept me from considering this pen.

#11 kiavonne

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Posted 26 July 2009 - 18:16

I see what you're looking at, but there are no threads outside for a cap to screw onto. It is a snap cap pen. I can't bring out the two I have to try and get better pictures for you, as they have been moved to storage along with most of my pens during my storm cleanup. I'm not certain what to use to describe what you're looking at, though I think that is actually a view to the section threads. I don't particularly remember the material having any kind of transparency, though I think that is what you see. This isn't a fancy pen at all, just a simple tool with some nice, understated lines. My camera skills are atrocious, and lighting is a harsh flash.

Edited by kiavonne, 26 July 2009 - 18:17.

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To write is to act.
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#12 welch

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Posted 15 August 2009 - 16:07

I just got one of the new Kaweco DIAs, and find that it is a first-rate pen. The ink-flow is generous, the medium nib is about right, and the balance is perfect whether posted or un-posted.

The design does ask to be a piston-filler, and, in fact, the whole pen looks like it was shaped after a roughly-1950 generic German piston-filler. The cap and clip are shaped very much like a vintage Senator.

Good pen, well worth the price.
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#13 LisaG

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 11:18

Whining alert! Hopefully, not that big a deal.

My Dia arrived last week, chrome with a medium nib. It skips on the down stroke, about three to four times in a line. That is an improvement after I switched from Noodler's Whaleman's Sepia (I now know it's thick), flushed it with an ammonia 1:10 solution, and refilled it with Air Corps Blue-Black.

And this is the most expensive pen in my collection, too! I have lots of Parkers of all prices, a Waterman clear Kultur, two plastic Kaweco Sports, a Rotring Core and others and none of them skip like this. Maybe I have just been lucky so far. Next I guess I will try the Waterman's ink I already have or buy Noodler's Eel Black. I am guessing and hoping it will get better. It writes really smoothly when I don't have to retrace my letters.

I bought the Dia after having a great experience with my Kaweco AL Sport (the aluminum version). The AL Sport writes so easily it's almost like magic! So I thought 'How great would it be to have a Kaweco that I could easily use bottled ink with?' (Sigh,..) Usually when I buy the a different model of a brand that I have had a good experience with - I get really good results. It was good theory.

Oh well, thanks for listening, and I am open to any and all suggestions.

- Lisa G.







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