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Platinum President EF

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10 replies to this topic

#1 Tsujigiri



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Posted 31 December 2008 - 03:31

Despite Sailor being the smallest of the three main Japanese pen companies, it seems to receive the most recognition (and well-deserved) among fountain pen users. But this review is about the flagship model of the Platinum pen company. Supposedly, this model was used by Clinton when he was in office. I know that the pen attracts comparison to the Sailor 1911, being a similar pen in shape, size, and price range, so I wonít ignore that comparison in the review (Iíll use my fatherís 1911 full-size for reference). When I got this pen, I wanted a very fine nib, and since I already had a Sailor 1911m, I decided to opt for a Platinum. My father was going on a business trip to Japan, so I asked him to pick one of these up if he got the chance.

Build Quality: 9/10

This pen has most of the hallmarks of quality I would expect: metal threads in the section, precise and smooth threads, and a general solid feel. Thereís nothing wrong with this pen in terms of build quality. But the Sailor 1911 has a slightly clearer imprint on the cap band, thicker and more rounded rings, and even an o-ring to seal the body. It has a cushioned feel when the cap is closed on it, too. So despite the build quality of the Platinum, Iíve docked it one point.

Grip, Balance, and Feel: 10/10

Itís not an oversize pen, but the grip feels very comfortable. Itís slightly larger than the 1911, so a very nice size. The balance is perfect, cap posted or unposted. With the cap posted, the lip of the cap rests just below my hand, not directly on it, meaning that the rings donít uncomfortably rub against my hand. The nib is just the right size for writing.

Filling System: 7/10

Cartridge converter, but the Japanese-style one with a wider mouth to keep ink flow up. Not that it would matter with this nib size, though. The converter Platinum makes is gold-plated, and matches perfectly with the pen. It doesnít let any ink past the seal, but it is a little stiff. The knob is a little uncomfortable, which makes cleaning out the pen somewhat of a pain.

Nib: 9/10

Itís a little scratchy, but that seems very reasonable considering the line size. The width of the line is very thin, but itís still fun to use. With Japanese nib sizes running one finer than Western ones, a Japanese extra-fine is about as thin as it gets. This nib produces a consistent line without skipping or pressure, like a fountain pen should. The platinum plating on the nib is perfect, original, detailed, and the look of it is elegant and stylish. This is an area where the President really comes out ahead of the Sailor 1911 and many other pens in this price range. The nib is simply a joy to look at.

Value: 9/10

These are available for about $200. For a well-built, 18k, reasonably-sized fountain pen, this seems like a reasonable price. Itís not my favorite line width, so I find it in my rotation less often, but itís still a very good pen. If the nib was 14k, I could get flex added, but I still enjoy using it as it is.

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#2 troglokev



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Posted 31 December 2008 - 04:22

Thanks for a thorough and concise review. Platinum seem to be a bit light on for reviews in our database, so this one is nice to have.

#3 rroossinck


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Posted 31 December 2008 - 05:40

Very nicely done!!! This truly a top notch review. Between this one and QM2's review of that Conklin overlay, we've definitely been blessed by some above-par reviews tonight!

Never have had the chance to play with a high-end Platinum. Hopefully the day comes soon. A year ago I'd have been stumbling over myself to get at this pen b/c of the Japanese XF nib; now, I'd rather have one that's about the width of the Sailor F-M.

So if you could turn the wheels back a little bit and throw down the $200 again, would you put it towards a 1911 or stick with the Platinum?

Keep up the great work on these reviews!

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#4 Silvermink


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Posted 31 December 2008 - 16:35

Thanks for the review!

QUOTE (rroossinck @ Dec 30 2008, 09:40 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
So if you could turn the wheels back a little bit and throw down the $200 again, would you put it towards a 1911 or stick with the Platinum?

I'm curious about this as well, having pondered picking up either a 1911/Pro Gear or a President sometime this coming year.
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#5 Peter from Sherwood Park

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 23:51

Thank you for the review. I have had two 3776s for some time and wondered if a President would be a good fit for me. I must look into it now.

#6 Inkstain



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Posted 01 January 2009 - 17:58

Right On!

Good review. I have a Burgandy President and your description is excellent and very accurate, I think. I have recently sent it back for a nib exchange to go from a Fine to Medium nib. Just as you described, the President has the typical Japanese "one size smaller" nib.

I found the nib to be very stiff and therefore held the line perfectly (just a little too narrow for my taste). I also found the pen to feel a touch lighter than my Sailor 1911's as well as a touch larger. I thought the Sailor furniture was a bit heavier, but the brass fittings for the converter in the section are well-made (although not as easy to handle in filling...as you pointed out). All in all a comfortable pen, smooth writer, and reliable. Just my 2 cents to add to an excellent review.


#7 Tsujigiri



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Posted 01 January 2009 - 19:35

Thank you for all the comments! As to whether I would buy the same pen again or not, I certainly would, but mostly because I already have a couple of Sailors and the Platinum makes my collection more diverse. If I had to choose between the two pens, though, I'm not entirely sure what I would choose. At this nib width, the nib performance seems comparable, so a lot of it would be up to personal taste. I personally like the shape of the Sailor better, and it has nicer metal fittings (the rings even have a little of a profile to them). The color of the plating is a little brighter, so the Sailor is a little shinier and more noticeable. The Sailor also has a slightly more solid feel to it, since the threads are completely silent when I take the cap on and off. The Platinum, however, has a much nicer-looking 2-tone nib compared to the 1911's. It has a trim ring at the tip, which I like, even though it's prone to corrosion. And it's a very solid pen despite Sailor having a slight edge in that department. Both pens are fantastic, so you can't really go wrong with either of them. It would mostly come down to personal preference (and also consider that the Sailor costs more, $220 vs. $184 at Fountain Pen Hostpital, $206 vs. $173 at Swisher Pens).

#8 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 01 January 2009 - 21:14

looks like a very well made pen wink.gif very nice nib too.
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

#9 John Cullen

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Posted 01 January 2009 - 22:42

Nice review and great pictures.

I just got a Platinum President and the only thing I can add---based on the half dozen platinums vs the three Sailor 1911's I have used---is that indeed the Platinum nibs have a hair of tooth to them but it is not unpleasant and can easily be removed but more important I think the Platinum nibs are much more tolerant than are the Sailor nibs of how they are held. In my experience it is easy to get a catch on the Sailor nib if you turn your wrist or hold the pen high.

No question in my mind that I would get another Platinum rather than the Sailor. YMMV.


#10 FrankB


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Posted 02 January 2009 - 10:29

This is a good review. Thank you.

I have a President and two 3776's. The President is a larger pen (than the 3776's), somewhat larger than a MB 146, and feels very good in my hand. The nib is also fairly large, which I like and enjoy. My pen has been highly reliable and an excellent writer. Mine is burgundy, and I can see myself getting another one in black. I am hooked on Japanese B nibs, and that is what my President has. The second one will no doubt be similarly equiped. I do not hesitate to recommend this model to folks who like a more substantial pen.

#11 pqu11



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Posted 25 June 2014 - 09:35

I know this is an old thread but this review was helpful even now and I wanted to say thanks since there is not much on this pen out there. I just bought the President, my first flag ship pen ever even though I've been using FPs for 20 years now...

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