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Waterman Preface


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14 replies to this topic

#1 LapsangS

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Posted 10 April 2006 - 18:56

Appearance and design:

I bought this pen from an Ebay store at 37.50 euros including shipping. I was the only bidder of this item and thought I had bumped into a great bargain. The pen arrived today in a pretty blue presentation box. It is blue "marbled" colour, lacquer over brass with M-sized nib made of 18kt yellow gold. There is nothing amazing or extravagant in this pen, it is straight-lined and standard-sized, a bit on the heavier side in hand. It is certainly thinner in width than Philéas and the nib is smaller too. So I think this pen could be described as a utilitarian workhorse. It is NOT a cigar!

I would give it a rating of 5/10

Writing

Quite a few people, here and elsewhere, have told me that all modern Watermans are decent writers. I certainly love the way that my F-nib Philéas writes. It is not picky about different papers or inks and the Waterman piston converter is perhaps one of the best on market IMHO. I like its two-colour big steel nib, too.

Preface is certainly pickier about paper than Philéas. It didn't like the paper of my diary. Nib is definitely broader than my 18kt Sonnet which is also medium. The pen came with a converter (there was no cartridge in the box) so I filled it with Parker Quink Blue. Definitely a poor starter and I had to press really hard sometimes. I then tried some cheap A4 copy paper and it behaved rather differently, although was still a poor starter and had needed to be held in very narrow angle to write at all. I made a test on the same paper as my diary, and the results looked dim: My cheapest pen, Pakistani Parker 51-clone Dux 612 gave best results. Parker Frontier came second, no skipping and Sonnet 18kt came third (I've had sometimes problems with it on this paper). These pens fit all in the 'usable' category. But Preface refused at first to give any line, had to press really hard and the handwriting looks really awkward. Rating 1/10. Edit: After nib change: 8/10

Picture: 1.) Dux 612 2.) Parker Sonnet Chiseled Tartan 3.) Parker Frontier 4.) Waterman Preface
A writing sample

Conclusion
There must be reason why some pens live on and others fade into oblivion. Waterman has discontinued production of this model some years ago. I don't know if my Preface is a good representative of all Prefaces, it may well be that there is something physically wrong with the nib. But this individual specimen turned out to be a total disaster. It makes me wonder if there are any good gold nibs around in modern pens since the two 18-karat ones I own are definitely the worst writers in my collection. However, my Sonnet works, this pen doesn't.

Edit (Friday May 28th, 2006):

I just received a new nib from the seller. It is sized F (the original nib was M), but this new one writes perfectly! The changed nib size is not a problem for me, fine nibs are better for general writing IMHO. The nib is not as wet as my Philéas F, and has certainly more "tooth", meaning not as smooth-gliding as the previous nib, but doesn't have a baby bottom either No pen can ever replace my Philéas, though.›

Overall Rating 2/10 (given because of the nice presentation box)
After installing a new, flawless nib: 7/10


Posted Image

Edited by LapsangS, 28 April 2006 - 10:53.


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#2 petra

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 02:49

Thanks for the review and sorry to hear about your problems. I don't have a Preface, but my Watermans are all very well behaved.

If you can get a bottle of Private Reserve Tanzanite, try that. The color would look nice coming from your blue Preface, and I have come to rely on the "curative" properties of this ink. It flows like crazy and seems to work very well even in stubborn pens.

Petra

#3 Blade Runner

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 02:59

Sorry you had a problem.
My Preface writes very well, so your nib probably requires adjustment.
Mine came with a broad; it wrote well, but was too wide. So i sent it
to Parker/Waterman in Janesville, Wisconsin, USA to exchange it for
a medium for $10. Could you send yours to Waterman in Europe for
a nib exchange?

#4 LapsangS

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 06:54

Sorry you had a problem.
My Preface writes very well, so your nib probably requires adjustment.
Mine came with a broad; it wrote well, but was too wide. So i sent it
to Parker/Waterman in Janesville, Wisconsin, USA to exchange it for
a medium for $10. Could you send yours to Waterman in Europe for
a nib exchange?

I am certainly considering it. There are two options for me to do:

1. Send the pen to Sanford Finland to nib adjustment
2. Return the pen to the eBay store for full refund

I think the pen has this so called "baby-bottom" problem. Ultra smooth nib but very difficult starter and a poor ink flow. :bonk:

#5 wimg

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 13:38

Hi LapsangS,

I think your conclusion is correct, it does sound like a baby bottom problem. I am sorry to hear you have these problems. Especially as Watermans generally perfrom excellently straight out of the box.

I think what you need to consider is whether you still want to use this pen after it has been fixed, or whether you have lost trust in it. In case of the latter, ask for a refund and send it back. If you think you may still like it after a fix, send it to Sanford.

BTW, did you try a Waterman ink with it? I find modern Waterman pens work best with Waterman inks, and Waterman inks have in my opinion better lubrication characteristics than Parker Quink inks anyway. The improved flow and lubrication effect may just make the difference.

HTH, warm regards, Wim

the Mad Dutchman
laugh a little, love a little, live a lot; laugh a lot, love a lot, live forever


#6 LapsangS

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 18:22

I contacted the seller and he promised to order a new nib for me

Awesome...

#7 wimg

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 18:39

Hi LapsangS,

That is good news! Please let us know the outcome!

Warm regards, Wim

the Mad Dutchman
laugh a little, love a little, live a lot; laugh a lot, love a lot, live forever


#8 Diana_steinmart

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 17:11

A brilliant review, I would be glad to have your permission to place it on my Waterman blog (if you wish a backlink, it will be provided).

#9 LapsangS

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 18:36

A brilliant review, I would be glad to have your permission to place it on my Waterman blog (if you wish a backlink, it will be provided).

Yes, of course, feel free to add it (with link to this forum). :) I was so critical about the pen because of a defect nib, and I am now waiting for a replacement so I might edit the review when it comes.

#10 LapsangS

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 10:41

I just received a new nib from the seller. It is sized F (the original nib was M), but this new one writes perfectly! The changed nib size is not a problem for me, fine nibs are better for general writing IMHO. The nib is not as wet as my Philéas F, and has certainly more "tooth", meaning not as smooth-gliding as the previous nib, but doesn't have a baby bottom either :D No pen can ever replace my Philéas, though.

#11 gyv

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 01:12

Thanks for your nice review of the WM Preface; sorry your pen gave you so much trouble.

I own four Prefaces, and had consistent good luck with them:

* Marble blue F (same as yours, second incarnation) with a cartridge of WM Florida Blue (the universal healer...)
* Marble green F, converter + Private Reserve Sherwood Green
* Solid black M, with a cartridge of Creeks black, even more opaque and "in you your face" than Aurora's. Generous flow, makes my M look like a B. I keep this pen around just in case I have to sign a peace treaty...
* Solid red F. with a cartridge of Creeks red. Bloody!

Good luck!

#12 LapsangS

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Posted 21 September 2006 - 13:14

Heh. I recently sold this pen (beautiful and small but not so good writer). :roflmho:

#13 loyalarcher

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Posted 21 August 2010 - 16:42

I have a blue Preface. I've had no problems with it. It's perfect for me, and it's a good thing I still have it because it now has a retail value of $140-$150. The silver Preface, though, is around $200.

#14 keswickmouse

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 02:41

My preface is very smooth and writes beautifully.

#15 Colonel Jake

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Posted 08 June 2014 - 05:41

My preface is very smooth and writes beautifully.


Fortunately, same experience here.






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