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  1. Executive summary The Hero 801A is a delightful chinatown find, coupled with the factory hero ink makes a fine writing combination. Appearance & Design (5/10)What can I say, it’s a black pen with gold accents. Body is metal, I assume brass with black paint/enamel. Not too thick not too thin the body has a slight taper. Cap is clear plastic lined and pulls off with a firm grip and caps neatly to the top of the body and stays there. The grip (for lack of terminology) is matte aluminum and is slightly jarring in contrast to the gold accents. The second, and smaller detractor is the etched model name in mandarin and English on the side of the cap, the writing will not rub off. Feel that this pen would be great sans the gold and gold lettering. The covered nib reminiscent to the parker super 21. Compared to a Nakimi Falcon and a noodlers pen for size. 18 by jajoff, on Flickr 2. Construction & Quality (10/10) I apply a “punching above ones weight” metric here, where by price or price range is used as a comparative to other pens in this price range. Does it compare with a pen that would sign the Geneva Convention? No. But for the price range it doesn’t have to, it punches with pens costing 10 times as much. . Most pens in this range need work- the noodlers famous 20 dollar holler being one of them, maybe that’s half the fun sometimes… sometimes it’s nice to get it working out of the box. Have bought several Chinese pens, and have been mostly mildly disappointed, almost never with the threading- universally they seem to get that right with these metal body ones, the hero 801a being no exception. The clip is nicely done, very simple with a wide flare at the top of the cap with good clipping power. Paint or enamel is pretty hardy looking doesn’t feel soft like some Chinese enamel pens. Standard filler is a screw type with a reasonable size reserve, works well with the fine nib. No sharp edges. 2 by jajoff, on Flickr 3. Weight & Dimensions (8/10) How a pen balances in hand is the second most important primary being the nib and writing performance. Weight total 32.9 grams Body 21.2 grams Cap 11.7 grams Prefer to post the caps, and most Chinese pens are unbalanced and heavy, my duke and duke 2000 pens being the worst offenders. This pen excels and doesn’t unbalance, without the cap the pen feels very light- ideal for a woman or the infirmed. If I had to critique maybe slightly wider, length fits nicely in a bigger hand with longer fingers. Length: 14.2mm Width: 9.5mm (approx. at thickest point) 3cm circumference. 4. Nib & Performance (9/10) Nice very fine nib, suspect chrome plated at best. Nib hidden, didn’t disassemble. Biggest quibble with this nib is that there is some side to side movement of the nib- somewhat affects the line but is slightly annoying if concentrating on this. Uncapped the nib dried within 20-30, a lick of the nib cleared the dryness. The flow is quite nice and surprised me, most of the Chinese pens including the noodlers tend to be dry starters until fixed. Given the fineness of the nib suspect that ink will last a long time with this one. Pretty smooth not an iridium nib find most fine nibs scratchy and like to dig into the paper. Being of the devils hand, fine nibs tend to exacerbate this, but the hero performs very well. As a lover of big fat, wet lines I gave pause to purchasing this but have no regrets thus far. Recognize handwriting sample below lacks in penmanship and stylistic flair and serves just as record of nib width. Writing done on lined rhodia paper. No puddling of ink or malfunctions. 5. Filling system & Maintenance (9/10) Standard, easily replaceable and cleanable screw type. Cannot attest to maintenance. 6. Cost & Value (10/10) Cost: $7.95 plus tax. Ink 56ml: $5.95 plus tax. If this pen had a 30-40 dollar tag on it, it would not surprise. Packaging consisted of plastic cellophane in a box of 12. By far the best chinese pen I have had the pleasure of using. Being a noodlers ink fan, I know this isn’t bomb proof but for 6 bucks I wanted to change and try some black ink and I am happy with it in this pen. 7. Conclusion (51/60) Was expecting typical Chinese quality- that will get tossed in the back of the drawer, only to be drawn (pun) out on the rare occasion. Some lingering concern with the lateral movement of the nib, unsure if not fully seated, defective or characteristic of hidden nib pens. All in all, incredible value for money, makes one happy to be a capitalist consumer. Would recommend to first timers or to collector that want a hooded nib pen for very little money.
  2. Cyber6

    Hero Inks

    I happened to be around Chinatown..and walked into a Bookstore... Couldn't resist buying the whole series... it was cheap as chips... Overall they are easy, free flowing inks... with a real nice shade.... (I do like the Blue Black).. The red is more like a strong pink.... and surprise.. surprise... they actually have some sheen.... All of them... So, when you get tired of spending $20, $30 or even $40/bottle of some extremely hard to find ink..... Go get some Hero ink... you'll be gladly surprised..
  3. Hi all, Being a curious type of person, some time ago I was intrigued to see some Chinese pens described as having 'curved nibs' such as this: http://m2.uxcell.com/photo_new/20120713/c/ux_a12071300ux0223_ux_c.jpg I am slightly tempted to try one, but wish to know a bit more before making a decision. Now my questions are along the lines of: i) Are these a bit of a gimmick? ii) Are there variants on the 'curved nib' theme? iii) Are they worth the effort (how easy are they to use) and are the actual results disappointing? iv) If you have one, is it a pen which you 'go to', or does something hold you back for most situations (i.e. except doodling, playing, etc.) ...and any comments on their practical use etc. much appreciated. Best. E.
  4. Need some help / advise / ideas.. I have a couple of Chinese Pens , a Huashilia 3000 and a Bookworm (not sure but I think might also be made by Huashilia) that both have finish problems. Both have brass bodies covered by some type of black paint and possibly a clear finish over the paint (also, not sure about the clear finish part).Both are great writing pens but both have started to have the black finish begin to show tiny "bubbling" and flaking off. Anyone ever have a go at refinishing on of these? I was considering sanding, repainting and dipping in a clear lacquer. As cheap as they were, and considering how bad they look now, I figure I've got nothing to loose. Any thoughts? To the moderators, I'm going to post this in both the Chinese and the general repair forums. Hope that's ok. ;-)
  5. Are there any Beijing fountain pen lovers on this forum? I will travel there in a few weeks (for the first time) and i couldn't think at a better gift for myself than a nice Chinese fountain pen. I know the city is huge, but I wonder if someone can guide me to some places where I can buy some really nice, local fountain pen(s). My budget is limited, however, I'm sure I can find something nice, but I have no idea where to start looking.
  6. I just received a Haolilai 661A, which I ordered from eBay. Since there is little about this brand on FPN, I thought I'd post this very informal, handwritten review.The pen I purchased was http://www.ebay.com/itm/FOUNTAIN-PEN-HAOLILAI-661-FINE-NIB-SILVERY-PURPLE-H055-/121127212869. The photo posted here of the pen is is from the eBay listing. My review is in the attached image, though I can't seem to modify the orientation of the photo.
  7. A couple of months back Jeff Pearson posted some comments and queries on my blog regarding fountain pens. Later on among the comments and replies, one day he suddenly asked for my mail address as he wanted to gift me certain fountain pens. Thinking it a bit quirky, I avoided it. Later on after more of such requests I finally relented. btw Jeff is a member of FPN (which I came to know later) & having username notimetoulouse So yesterday I got these wonderful fountain pens - Jinhao x450, - love it Kaigelu 316, - had only seen its reviews on FPN Picasso, - had only heard of the brand Wingsung 380, - I already have it, the same one !!! Lanbitou - so tiny didn't know it existed :-) and also a carefully packed set of ink cartridges - obviously I did not know that these inks also came in cartridges. Thanks Jeff for these wonderful pens and cartridges - and taking the pains to ship these from your end - which is half the world round ! btw the Jinhao x450 is my favourite, and I had been searching for this colour for quite some time :-) And all the pens have very smooth nib, and look great! Images below.
  8. ztt2

    Hero 160

    As a relatively new fountain pen user who happens to go to university, I really like Chinese fountain pens. They're cheap, they're fun, and sometimes I feel like I get pretty lucky. While I feel like Hero gets a pretty bad rap for the blatant copying they do of designs (such as Lamy or Parker), I ended up buying this 160 on eBay. I mostly dabbled in Jinhao, and while I like them, I decided to spend a bit more and see if I liked these better. This is my first review, and I'm by no means a photographer, so I apologize if some of the pictures aren't quite as good as what you're used to seeing! First Impressions: The pen came in this pretty simple green box. These kinds of boxes I've received before so it's nothing really extravagant or special, but I do like it. It gets the job done and it's pretty nice. You open the box and once again you have this fairly cheap material protecting the pen, but the pen itself I think is very attractive. The clip is nice and springy, and the top of it has a small five petaled flower design. All around the cap you have these grooves of various lengths that stretch downwards towards the barrel of the pen. The body tapers towards the end, and on the barrel you have a shiny chrome band that says "Hero" and under it "160" with the same Chinese characters that appear on the box. Construction: Note that all my attempts at close-up shots failed, so sadly there will not be any photographs here. The cap is simply a pull off, not a twist sadly, but it functions very well. Not much force is needed to actually remove it, and it is secure enough so that it will never simply accidentally come up when trying to remove it from your pocket or pouch. Overall, the construction is extremely solid. Nothing rattles, the barrel screws on and off tightly, and the whole body seems to be able to stand up to some abuse. Filling: The pen uses an aerometric converter which I had some problems with, but I suspect that those were issues related to my own inexperience with the system rather than the converter being at fault. For now, I removed it and have a Parker converter installed, which fits fine. Note that standard international converters don't seem to fit. The use of a Parker converter was a necessity. Nib: The nib is great. Honestly, I love it. It is a 12k gold semi hooded nib, and it writes excellently. I never experience any skipping or hard-starting, it has a nice, juicy sweet spot, and it provides a kind of feedback that I really like. I've had some Jinhao nibs that are smoother, but I rather enjoy this one more. It's not scratchy, but you feel that you're writing which I think is great. In my experience it's a nice, wet nib that can lay down a nice patch of ink despite it being a pretty fine nib. There is little to no line variation, so if you're a flex freak it's really not for you, but since line variation and lecture notes don't particularly go hand in hand, I don't find that it detracts from the experience at all. Writing Sample: I'm no calligrapher, but I tried to make it as nice as I could for you guys! Overall: I adore this pen. I absolutely love it, and this is one that's always going to be inked. It's very affordable, it's very nice, it's not a boring black, and it just gets the job done. When I was contemplating buying one I couldn't find any reviews on this model, so hopefully this can be helpful to someone who is in a similar situation as I was. Maybe they aren't completely ethical design-wise, but if this is any indication, they make one hell of a pen.
  9. I have a Jinhao X450 (marbled finish) that I got a while ago when I bought a couple of Chinese pens (one is my knock-about Hero 110 that's quite good). I avoid Chinese pens unless I need something that I can use when working in the lab or that can be knocked-about, be lost (or stolen). Given that, I don't usually pay more than $10 for them, and don't care much if they don't work. But I have taken a liking to the very sturdy brass and enamel construction and the excellent M nib that I have gotten used to (though I greatly prefer F and EF nibs and usually avoid M or bigger because it is impractical to write calculations with them, and the fact that I simply really like EF nibs). Unfortunately, after writing two paragraphs, a vacuum forms inside the converter and no ink at all flows into the feed/nib section. I end up having to turn the piston in and out to manually draw air in every ten minutes. I took every single piece of the pen apart and soaked it in household bleach (it was fine, but please don't anyone soak their Montblanc in bleach! I DO NOT recommend trying this on any pen you spend more than $10 on! ). Cleaned every single channel and section with a little nylon brush. Everything was free of any contaminant or manufacturing residue. Put everything back together perfectly. Tested pen. . . And the same thing happened. I can hear a slow bubbling sound as the air tries to get into the reservoir. It is obvious that the feed system is not allowing for any air to enter. The system consists of a partially hollow feed with a little capillary feed that slips inside of it, it is this narrow little capillary feed that plugs into the tiny hole in the section and connects to the converter's reservoir. I don't think the design facilitates for any air to enter to stop a vacuum forming. Does anyone else's X450 do this? Is there any way to fix it? I would really like to find a way to solve the problem, as I have taken a liking to the pen. Thanks in advance for any advice.
  10. This is a short review of the HERO 725. To begin, I need to say that it is a very cheap pen (about 14 USD). But not only expensive pens are worth reviewing... Fountain pens are for everone after all ! Look: For a 14 USD pen, it is, I would say very very nice. Look very classy, simple... especially the two tone nib that is very well crafted. Nib performance: The nib on this pen performs very decently for such a inexpensive pen. However, if you like very expensive solid gold flexible nibs, there are chances that you're gonna be disapointed! What I mean is that it is a fonctionnal nib there is not a lot of fun to do with that. Is is very stiff and don't try to make it flex... PLEASE!!!! it's gonna flex, but not the way you like it to, and not returning to the initial position... you know what I mean It is not TOO scratchy neither. Weight and balence: I was surprised how well balenced this pen was, posted or not, it is very confortable. It weights about 25.7 grams. Feed : On that point, it is easy to notice that it is a chinese pen... At the begenning of the page, it is gonna be very very wet, and at the end it is becoming dry... but that is not a big issue if you dont write for a long continuous lap of time with it.. but i would say it is a big problem if you're a person who writes 16 pages straight... Conclusion: It is a good pen for the price. I would recommend it, but it is not the first one I would buy in that price range, personnally, I prefer the pilot 78g. I dont like giving a note on 10 or 100... It is very different for each writer and I think it is better to describe the good and the bad points of the pen to let everyone decide if it is a pen for him or not... *English is not my first language, so please understand if I made some mistakes.
  11. I recently came across these pens at a thrift store and they were only 99 cents so i bought them thinking that they may be worth something since i have made a lot of profit off of doing this before with other fountain pens that i found. The one is a fountain pen with a rooster and feather/flowery design. On the tip it says "Genius Iridium Germany" The box which has an Asian type of design on it also has another pen in it. But this one is a ballpoint pen with what looks to be a giraffe and feather/flowery design. Here are some pictures. I appreciate the feedback.
  12. Which one of these sets are real and which are counterfeit (or are they all the same)? What are your experiences with them if you have bought them in the past? Anyone here who can read Chinese? What do the packs say on the front?
  13. budgetpenlover

    Camel Brand Pens Anyone?

    I was looking into aquiring a Camel 1968 Medium Nib (http://www.ebay.com/itm/CAMEL-1968-Rosewood-Color-Medium-Nib-Fountain-Pen-new-/150971590994?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item23269ba952) for notetaking and school use, but I have some reservations because I have never heard of the manufacturer. I really don't want to go through the hassel of returning it to China if it's a piece of (bleep). Has anyone heard of Camel pens; if so, I would love to hear some feedback. Does anyone know of any cheaper pen brands that preform well compared to their cost?
  14. Hello, I came across this gold? goldplated? fountain pen and need help identifying it. It seems to have Japanese or Chinese writing on it. Could anyone tell me what brand this is and how much this fountain pen might be worth? Thank you in advance
  15. Chinese - Korean - (Obviously) English. From an ancient Chinese philosopher Xunzi (3rd Century, BC). You can see why the Asian writers tend to favor very fine nibs (especially for Chinese). English is a literal translation. The saying is usually used to refer to a case where a student outgrows the teacher. : )
  16. http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a28/grapefruiit_/IMGP8270_zps5e2c0d08.jpg The Yiren 829 is yet another unbelievably affordable Chinese-made fountain pen that can be purchased on eBay. It set me back $7.20 AUD including postage! My first impressions of this pen? It’s well-built, aesthetically pleasing, a great everyday writing tool – if used mostly at home. The barrel and cap are made of a chromatic-finish charcoal grey metal, with an engraving of gold plum blossoms across the barrel. It’s smaller and more slender than I expected. It feels solid in the hand, yet not overwhelmingly heavy. In fact, it’s fairly light for a fountain pen, much lighter than some Parker ballpoints I own. Truth be told, I purchased this pen purely as a gamble, because I love plum blossoms. To the Chinese and Koreans, plum blossoms (KR: 매화, CH: 梅花) are a symbol of strength, endurance and beauty in the midst of hardship: http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a28/grapefruiit_/03plum_BaoChun-red_2002_zps633e5cb8.jpg It comes with a very clean, minimalistic medium hooded nib, which I rather like. See below for a closer look - http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a28/grapefruiit_/IMGP8267_zpscc1db78f.jpg I think of it as an ‘everyday pen’ because together with the ink I used* to test it out, it is compatible with such a wide range of papers. It writes wonderfully on A4 cartridge paper without any feathering or bleeding onto the back of the page. I was pleasantly surprised, but dubious about how well it would perform on thinner paper. So I gave it a spin on a regular Spirax composition book. Though Spirax normally produces quality notebooks, this particular style – from its latest fashion stationery range – had very flimsy paper. Amazingly, while some faint traces were visible through the back of the page, the Yiren 829 performed very well on even this cheap-grade exercise-book style paper. (* from Hero, another Chinese brand – I don’t need expensive ink when I get through a stack of paper each day for my thesis!) http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a28/grapefruiit_/IMGP8278_zpsf1655464.jpg I would recommend this pen for students, or anyone else who wants an inexpensive writing tool of decent quality. It doesn't quite match the ease/comfort/smoothness of the Lamy Safari, but it's nice for those days when you want to treat yourself to a little luxury while writing.
  17. HisNibs.com update -- Re-stocking from China Greetings all, As it does periodically, Monteverde is retiring some pens to make way for new models. Unfortunately, two of my personal favorites are being effected, the Regatta and the Prima, and I question the wisdom of the decision. We've also just received a large re-stocking of models from China. A few of our favorites were not available this time, but the vast majority were. I'll only mention a couple of the models in this newsletter, but please just go to the homepage http://www.hisnibs.com to see them all listed as 'back in stock'. As this newsletter goes out to a mailing list of thousands of customers, please understand if there's a delay in answering your email queries or orders after one of these is sent. We will respond in order received and as soon as possible! Join us on our Facebook HisNibs.com fan page which can be reached directly at https://www.facebook.com/HisNibs1. Come join us for what has become a lively meeting place for news about pens, ink and handwriting. On the blog...Gorilla reunion ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~in this issue * Monteverde Regatta line retired * Monteverde Prima selection reduced * Jinhao Wooden Chariot * Hero 616 series * Duke '2009' * Picasso Candle Flame * Jinhao Black Dreadnaught * Black leather 48-pen case * Baoer 8-Horse series * 'His Nibs' page on Facebook * On the blog...Gorilla reunion ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Monteverde Regatta line retired http://www.hisnibs.com/MonteverdeRegattaGroupRandom2_small.jpg Why Monteverde has decided to retire the magnetic-capped Regatta is beyond me. Even if sales have leveled off at this point, the innovative magnetic cap (which provides the ease of a slip cap and the security of a screw cap) should argue for its continuance. The Black/Black version has totally sold out, but I've just laid in a final supply of the Chrome/Black and the White/Blue fountain pens, so jump now if you want to add one of these really neat pens to your collection. "Norman, I have received the new pen and ink, and am thoroughly delighted. My handwriting still stinks though. This is a wonderful pen and I look forward to writing with it more and more over the years...Maybe I will even get a few more nibs to go with it!" B. C., Athens, GA "My pens arrived today! I LOVE them both. I remember that you said the F nibs were like an extra fine, but both of these pens are perfect for me! The Invincia (which is much better looking in person-the finish is very luminous) is slightly finer than the Regatta, but I think these will both be daily writers. I love how heavy they both are, and the magnetic closure on the Regatta is very nice. Wonderful pens at a terrific price!" T. D., Anna, TX "Dear Norman: My Monteverde Regatta chrome and black fountain pen arrived today, as did the Private Reserve Purple Mojo bottles. I am absolutely delighted, and although I have only written a couple of sentences with it, I am confident I am going to love it as much as I did my Mont Blanc Ramses II predecessor. So back into the real art of penmanship again - whoopee. thank you." E. L., New Zealand "Hello Mr.Haase, i just got my pen today and it's awesome, it writes so smooth. I just want to thank you for the great review on Youtube, and the great customer service." W. A., New York, NY "The "Monteverde Regatta" as breath taking as a sail catching wind in the Caribbean. Writes with a strong line and holds it's course well." V. B., Naples, FL Read more here... http://www.hisnibs.com/regatta1.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Monteverde Prima offerings reduced http://www.hisnibs.com/PrimaFPGroupSpread2_small.jpg Although the Prima still seems to be 'hanging around' (and probably my personal favorite of Monteverde's current line-up, for what that's worth), a number of the colors/pattterns have been retired. The Black is gone. However, Monteverde found two each of the Brown Stripes, Blue Stripes and Brown Swirl to send to me. I had previously listed the first two as 'permanently retired', so am glad to receive these...but I'll soon have to post that same description again. Act fast if you're interested. "Hi Norman. Just wanted to give a big thank you as the green Prima came this morning. Love it! I saw this pen when it first came out and was immediately struck by the luminous green, as I have an excellent collection of 1920s OS jade Sheaffer Flat=Tops. You tuned the nib perfectly, and I mean perfectly. I like them extra-fine and pretty dry, and this F nib completely fills the bill. This one will become a daily user. I also appreciate your kind and personal note that you put in with it. That makes dealing with you a pleasure, and makes me feel like an individual. The website is also very personal, and is one of the best on the web---if not THE best. Thank you x 100 for another excellent purchasing experience. I hope your business multiplies greatly. Others can take lessons from you." S. D., Luthrerville MD "Dear Norman, I have just received the pen and it is superb! The nib is wonderful and a delight to write with. Thank you so much for your frank and excellent advice. I have told my wife that I am thinking of buying another of these wonderful pens with the outstanding stub nib! Warmest regards and I am going to buy the Monteverde turquoise ink for all my official signature work." G. A., New York, NY "Mr. Haase, I received my Monteverde Prima yesterday and got it cleaned up as you instructed and filled with ink and then put pen to paper. I love it. It writes great and keeps up with the pace I write at nicely. Every once in a while it has a little trouble starting But that could be my fault and it isn't a problem really at all. I have been writing different things with it all morning. I also wanted to thank you for the prompt responses to my questions, the quick delivery of the pen, and the personal note. That type of customer service goes a long way with me and you can bet I will be ordering again very soon. Merry Christmas!" A. C., Odessa, MO Many more testimonial here: http://www.hisnibs.com/prima.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Jinhao Wooden Chariot http://www.hisnibs.com/JinhaoWoodenChariotPosted2_small.jpg "I received the Jin Hao Wooden Chariot, and Dancing Dragons today. They are truly works of art as well as reliable smooth- writing pens that actually write better than many of my expensive European models. Thanks for your kind attention, first class service and the hand written note. I look forward to purchasing more pens from you in the near future." K. G., Columbus, OH See more photos here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/wooden_chariot.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Hero 616 series http://www.hisnibs.com/Hero616GroupRandom_small.jpg "Dear Norman, thank you for drawing my attention to the new 'old model' Hero 329s. I would like to order one in dark green, and I would be grateful, if you could send me a PayPal invoice. The 616 arrived two weeks ago. What did you do to the nib? It is very smooth and lays down a slightly thicker line than my other 616s. That's perfect for me. At the moment I use it more often than my Parker 51s where the medium nib tends to be a little too broad for my hand-writing. This is more than just a simple knock-off. In terms of balance, reliability and design it is an exceptionally good pen in its own right. If the old 329 is similar than I will be very happy. Thank you for going to all that trouble for such 'cheap' pens! I have many more expensive ones in my collection, but I do not have the same fun in using them. With thanks and warm regards", C. S., Tübingen, Germany "Hello Norman, Just to let you know that the Hero 616s arrived a few weeks ago, and I've been using them since then. I couldn't be happier with the way they write. The fine point is just what I wanted and it writes beautifully. These pens are absolutely amazing value and your service was excellent. Thank you." M. D. S., Australia "Norman: Received the Hero 616 and Pilot 78G today. Must say they're great--properly tuned and ready to go to work! The 616 writes just like my beloved Parker 51 Flighter (I'll use it for travel since the Flighter has become to valuable to lose). The Pilot with the F nib is perfect for my research notebooks (where I tend to write with very small handwriting). Thanks! Fine pens and great service. Have a great day!" M. D., West Jordan, UT "Hi Norman, I received my 616 yesterday. I wrote about twelve pages with it last night and I'm very pleased - as far as I'm concerned the nib is perfect. I don't remember exactly where I saw your site recommended, but I'm glad I did! I'll certainly order again from you in the future." J. C., Chattanooga, TN Read more here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/%27616%27_series.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Duke '2009' http://www.hisnibs.com/DukeChaplinPosted_small.jpg "...the Duke 'Niner (nee Charlie Chaplin) arrived today and all I can say is OMG! I feel like one of my many nieces when their hair does exactly what they want it to. This thing is so bitching, Norm...And I must say that your "tune-up" has revealed to this poor scribe what a FP is actually supposed to write like. I thought my Sheaffer was all that and a bag o' chips, but the 'Niner beats it hands down. I don't know what you did, but Norm you've got to tell me, because I've got a dozen FPs that don't work quite right and I must get them working at least in the neighborhood of this one." M. H., Salt Lake City, UT See more here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/2009.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Picasso Candle Flame http://www.hisnibs.com/PicassoCandleFlameAngledCap_small.jpg "Norman, hope this email finds you well. I enjoy the Picasso Candle Flame pen a bunch-I'm sure it has a lot to do with your nib prep but it writes smoother than any Pen I own. I'm requesting 2 more. Thanks." R.F., N. Andover, MA "Dear Mr. Haase, thanks so much - I received my "Candle Flame" pen today. It's a real beauty. I usually like to try out a pen in the shop, so I wasn't sure how much to expect from one I bought online. I'm glad to report it writes wonderfully and feels great in my hand. I'll be keeping an eye on your website for new pens. You have a bunch of other interesting models, but it looks like they sell out pretty quickly - I'll have to stay on my toes. Thanks again and all the best!" J. K., Berkeley, CA Read more here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/candle_flame.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Jinhao Black Dreadnaught http://www.hisnibs.com/JinhaoBlackDreadnaughtPosted_small.jpg "Norman -- Thanks for continuing to send the updates. This time it reminded me that I had been meaning to write and tell you how much I've enjoyed the pens gotten from you. That "dreadnaught" is one heckuva pen! Probably the bulkiest pen I own at this moment. I had to find a special pen case to carry it around since it wouldn't fit into the one I normally carry. Even at that size, I find I enjoy it and tend to carry it most days, filled with Waterman purple. The nib is amazingly smooth and always starts right up; the line definitely leans toward the broad side of medium, which I very much prefer." J. T., Marietta, GA "The Dreadnaught FP arrived today . . . it's perfect! The wide girth, nice center of gravity (even when posted), and smooth-writing medium-to-broad (always my preference!) nib makes it my favorite writing instrument. It's every bit as good-if not even better-as you-know-who. . . I might have to purchase another color to have two in my collection. Definitely a superior pen!" C. H., Twinsburg, OH "Hi, Norman, My new Jinhao Black Dreadnaught arrived today. I was so eager to try it, I dipped the nib in ink and wrote with it before even following your washing instructions. Afterwards, I washed it. It fits well in my hand. I very much like the size and weight of the pen. Also, the nib glided over paper smoothly. I was too late to order it the first time you stocked it -- my bad. I am happy you brought it back, and that I bought it this time. Happily Writing," R. D., Melbourne, FL More photos here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/dreadnaught.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Black leather 48-pen case http://www.hisnibs.com/PenCasesBrown48Filled3_small.jpg More pen cases here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/pen_storage.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Baoer 8-Horse series http://www.hisnibs.com/Baoer8HorseAngledPair2_small.jpg "I received the inks and the surprise pen last Monday, which would have been October 1st. I absolutely love the Baoer 8 Horses pen. It writes like a dream and moves across the page so quickly I have to make sure I don't end up scribbling words that don't exist! It's filled with the Private Reserve Velvet Black and I love the ink. I knew I needed black, but I didn't know I would enjoy it so much. Who knew such a 'boring' color could be so much fun to use...I still can't believe how a pen could float across a page. I almost feel guilty that I want to use it more than the other two I have. It might be new pen addiction, but honestly, the pen is simply amazing." K. B., Etna, CA "Thanks Norman for the prompt shipping and careful packaging! I already had one of these "8 horses" pens and it is indeed a challenge to count all 8! It's a great pen and one that I could afford to give as gifts to friends who feel they cannot afford a good fountain pen. This one writes better than my vintage mabie-todd." C. F., Dallas, TX "Hi Norman, I'm gonna rave about the Baoer 8 Horses that came today. It is the smoothest nib I have ever used! That includes many $100-200 pens in my collection. Nobody is going to believe that this is a $20 pen. The brass construction gives it a solid feel, and it balances perfectly in my hand even when posted. I have the bronze finish, and am running Pelikan Brilliant Brown - makes for a nice combination!" T. T., Ann Arbor, MI More photos here... - http://www.hisnibs.com/eight_horses.htm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 'His Nibs' page on Facebook http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v167/hisnibs/HisNibsFacebookimage.png Join us for daily news updates from around the world about fountain pens, ink, handwriting and more! Click here to visit our Facebook page - http://facebook.com/hisnibs1 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ On the blog...Gorilla reunion A video showing a former 'keeper' being reunited with a his gorilla charge, back in the wild. See the May 13th entry here... - http://hisnibs.blogspot.com Regards, Norman Haase His Nibs.com
  18. I recently acquired a Hero 308 fountain pen and 10 Hero 616. These pens are very risky, they are both from the same company but one is comparatively more expensive (308) than the other (616) by about 30 times. I just wanted to show that cheap pens sometimes can outperform noticeably and can make for a better starter. The 308 has a very cool looking nib, it writes OK and feels very expensive. However upon inspection, not so good. The nib and feed on mine is noticeably misaligned. The tines on the nib aren't parallel, the right tine is slightly bending up. The cap loosened after a few weeks and I had to put stickers in the cap so that the body wouldn't fall out. The metal piece connecting the two pieces of the cap already lost its grip. The piece of steel on the tail of the pen isn't soldered at the right angle so its lopsided. However, it didn't fall apart yet. The 616 on the other hand varies extremely from pen to pen. The feed and actual nib on all 10 of mine are misaligned horribly, but can be fixed in seconds. The build is plastic, so extremely light, a good transition from ballpoints to FP. The squeeze converter contains about 2 ml of ink (a lot). The flow is excellent. But if you are going to get this pen, buy at least 5, I find only 2 or 3 in my collection of 616 that actually feels extremely smooth. So my point is. Maybe get several cheap pens like the 616 instead of investing on a nice display piece.





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