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  1. Nakaya Decapod Twist - Ao Tamenuri Warning - lots of pictures! http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_1.jpg This isn’t going to be a formal review; just some brief impressions and I hope instead that the pictures give a good idea of what the pen is like. There are a lot of lovely pens in the world but the moment I first saw the Nakaya Decapod Twist I knew I would have to buy one. I already owned the standard Decapod by then, but the Twist was clearly something special and unique. I’d never seen a pen quite like it. After all, how many pens take the hand-made virtues that Nakaya are famous for and combine them into something that is effectively a piece of abstract minimalist sculpture you can write with? Suffice to say it’s a pretty short list! http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_2.jpg Although I knew I wanted a Decapod Twist, I wasn’t sure what finish to chose so it was a while before got around to buying one. What made my mind up was seeing the pictures of Quinden’s Twist in the ao tamenuri finish. Once I saw that, it was just a case of how quickly I could raise the money! The cool greenish blue base coat makes a lovely change from the more common red finishes. However, the other option I would have liked to have considered was the unpolished shu, but Nakaya doesn’t make the Twist in that finish. http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_7.jpg The standard Decapod is a uniquely slender pen within Nakaya’s line up. In the hand the pen is noticeably thinner and lighter than their other ebonite pens, though this doesn't always come across in photographs. It feels delicate. By comparison the Twist is somewhat sturdier and shares the same basic dimensions as the Portable, Long Piccolo and Naka-ai. The section in particular is pretty much the same size for all these models. However, the degree to which it bulges out at the nib end does vary slightly from pen to pen, creating subtle differences when you hold them. I find the section on these pens only just long enough to be comfortable without touching the threads, so I like the section to have a small bulge as it provides more room to grip the pen. Fortunately, the one on mine is fine. http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_3.jpg Capped my Nakaya Twist weighs 26g and uncapped 19g. For me this is just about ideal as I find pens around this weight suit me perfectly. Because it has a converter it balances very nicely too. Mine doesn’t have a clip. I find these pens are a little long to clip comfortably in a shirt pocket and the facets mean it doesn’t roll quite as readily as a round pen, which makes the clip less important as a roll stop. I also think it looks better without one. Uncapped it is 131mm long and the cap is not designed to post. http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_5.jpg http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_8.jpg Obviously, the key feature of this pen is the ten facets that spiral gently round the cap and barrel. I love the appearance very much and the curved glossy surfaces catch the light differently to any other pen I own. Although each edge has been cut quite crisply I find that, in the hand, I don’t notice them at all and it handles very much the same as the pens I mentioned above. The facets particularly suit the tamenuri style finish, where the edges create many opportunities for the base colour to show through. Mine is a little muted at the moment, but over time I would expect the top colour to become slightly more transparent, creating a more dramatic contrast. The nib on my Twist is a soft fine. This was a mistake as I had ordered a standard firm fine. However, when I dipped it I found the softness of the nib was hardly noticeable; indeed it is just slightly springy with the light pressure I was using. Certainly there is no line variation unlike, say, a soft Danitrio nib. Line width is about equivalent to a Western extra fine, which I find ideal in the office for writing notes. For such a fine nib it’s a smooth writer with good ink flow, perhaps a touch less juicy than most of my pens. Consequently it writes well on most types of paper, which is a bonus in an office environment. http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_6.jpg One of the other attractions of buying the Decapod Twist was that I would be able to compare it with my standard Decapod and my two Danitrio Octagons. While it would be futile to try to make detailed comparisons I hope you find the pictures useful. Suffice to say that all are lovely pens, made to a very high standard. Apart from the slimness/light weight of the original Nakaya Decapod, the most obvious difference between them is that Nakaya favour crisply cut edges while those of the Danitrios are slightly rounded. It’s also interesting to see how similar in weight they are, except for the lighter Decapod: Nakaya Decapod Capped 22g Uncapped 13g Nakaya Decapod Twist Capped 26g Uncapped 19g Danitrio Hakkaku Capped 28g Uncapped 18g Danitrio Octagon Capped 28g Uncapped 18g I find them all well balanced and comfortable; both the Decapod Twist and Danitrio Hakkaku are in daily use at my office. http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_9.jpg http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_10.jpg So, that’s about it. The Decapod Twist is a lovely pen and, as I’m sure I’ve seen written elsewhere, could very well be considered Nakaya’s most distinctive offering. The urushi lacquer is beautifully done and I particularly enjoy the slight imperfections (if you can call them that) that reveal the maker's hand at work, which is so much a part of the appeal of these pens. http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b70/minkapics/Nakaya_11.jpg





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