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  1. Good evening fellow FPN'ers. Having dipped my toes in a couple of posts so I am going to have a go at a review of a little pen I have just acquired, the new Conway Stewart Belliver in Bracket brown. Having looked at a lot of other reviews, they all seem to follow a similar formula so will "sort of" follow the same but with my own flavour. As with my writing, I will go off at tangents, nothing new from me then... :-) The post has a fair number of pictures to support my ramblings. I hope someone finds it of some value. Purchase Experience: 10/10 Purchased online from "Andy's Pens" based somewhere in Kent, England. Gave the guy a call to check stock, no problems, however, no nib available. CS apparently were awaiting new nibs, but was informed that if I still want one the whole pen/nib will come direct from the factory. Ok for me, no problemo. Three days later, It was delivered! Opening the box and first impressions: 10/10 Ok already getting cheesy, 10/10 again. But for real, it is an experience getting one of these. The box is perhaps a quarter size of the CS Winston box but no less plush. It was a box within a box within a box, plus a little surprise, a 2014 pocket diary from Conway Stewart. Nice touch, but will be saving it as a keepsake/memento. It has a nice signed booklet from the factory. In other words, a real person has made, assembled, packed and proudly signed their name to the final touch before boxing. That is a nice sign of assurance to me. Love it already. Time to see the pen. The pen itself (just looking at it): 9.5/10 At this point, after peeling back the multiple levels of security to get the the prize, there it is, sat nestled in it's felt groove shining. I mean REALLY shining. A sort of deep translucent multi hewed, oh hang on... It looks little smaller than I expected. Hmmmmm. Nope, stick with it, size IS deceiving and lets pick the thing up and have a proper look now shall we? The pen in the hand: 10/10 Well what can I say, it feels just perfect. Smaller than I expected, but I am starting to love it already so have marked it back up to 10. It is VERY shiny and the colours have a depth that is beyond belief. I expect the shine will wear off in time but for now I am enjoying it. I will compare the size later with a popular well known pen :-) The weight is just right as well. Anyone looking for a balanced pen, this is the one. Can't tell posted, I never post pens I always hold the cap in one hand. Sorreeee. Taking the cap off: 8/10 then 9/10 then.... Warning fellow CS pen addicts, warning. I mentioned awaiting a new nib from CS and they meant NEW nibs indeed. This is neither the standard all yellow gold nor the limited edition two tone gold but a BRAND NEW nib series from the look of it. This is NOT the nib in ANY of the CS advertisements that I can find. This is a two tome, looking very much like a MB149 nib but without the breather. It has grooves which may be stamped in that flow from the pen body to the nib and separates the two gold tone. It is also unbelievably shiny. This playmates is going to be a marmite experience for many, love it or hate it. It looks less mechanical and sort of flows. it gives a classic pen more of a vintage look and feel and to me it does enhance the overall vision. BUT. I don't like surprises. Size: 9/10 Sorry. I expected it being a tad longer and a tad wider in girth. Not measuring the pen or looking long and hard at the specs or size guide or doing a 300 mile round trip to handle one, I drooled and pressed the button. My fault, but I stand by it, it is gorgeous. I will ramble more later. How big IS it? About the same size as a TWSBI 540. (check my pictures). Ever so slightly thinner section, length, mmmm same-ish. I have largish hands, not panicking yet, but grumbling to myself. Stop rambling and fill the pen! 10/10 Cartridge/Converter. Screwed tight in place, will never drop out, love the design, simple and effective. Other Manufacturers please take note and think long and hard about it, this is the way to fit a converter properly. Easy to fill, so loaded it up with Waterman Havana brown to do some basic tests and see what this thing can do. Havana Brown in this pen: 2/10 Move on please. This is not for this pen. Ever. It put ink on the paper and that is ALL I will say on that matter. Inking the pen after a good clean: 10/10 That's better. Loaded up with Diamine Teal and offered the nib up to some cheap copy paper and scribbled some lines, did the "quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" thing (I bet that poor fox is getting tired of it) and it sort of just worked. No drama, the usual feathering and bleed thru as expected but in general, erm, nice.... Offering the pen up to some better paper: 10/10 Rhodia lined pad, the flip over type. Oh... Now we are in business. Will try and describe this. Nib touches paper, nib glides. REALLY glides. A little feedback, a slight spring (I have a light hand) almost imperceptible spring to be honest, a slight softness but ooooh so silky smooth. What did I say about the new colouring of these nibs and surprises? WHO CARES!!! Wow. Silky, butter, cheesy (oh thats me sorry). Pic with writing sample supplied is on Oxford Black n' Red The writing experience overall 10/10 This is where I just start writing glowing stuff about this (little pen). It is designed to write with this little fella. It is a no-nonsense, no frills writing instrument. It lays ink down with a little line variation, has enough feedback for a light writer AND fits quite comfortably in large hands just as the TWSBI does. I did some fast large signatures to try and defeat the flow. Not a chance. The Belliver kept up. This is a pen to write pages and pages with and will keep on going till the ink runs out. Sort of overall impressions after use: 10/10 For anyone put off by the usual high end monster pens, this is ideal, it is NOT an oversized behemoth. It is a REAL sized or realistic sized pen. For people with small hands. Perfect. For people with Huge hands. Please try before you buy. I am happy, others may not be. The nibs are new. See if CS publish any pics and see if you like them. I do, it is going to be a battle of taste on this one. They write amazingly, just amazing. Nib width. The nib is the italic medium. This is ALMOST the same as the TWSBI 1.1 or the Lamy 1.1 italic in width. Paper. It needs good paper to get the best out of it. Heck it deserves it. Don't spend £300+ for a pen and write on toilet paper, please go for the experience, it is worth it. Ink. Experiment. I have read multiple times on these forums how ink performance differs from pen to pen and vice versa. It really is true. Diamine performs badly in my CS Winston IF nib, but is tamed with Aurora black! The Belliver with the IM nib LOVES Diamine ink. It did not like Waterman brown, it turned the pen into a fire-hose and just threw inconsistent lines all over the page. Very messy. Yours might like a different tipple. Take your time and find the one that the pen likes. Urban Myth I have also read CS nibs have had flow issues and many people have had theirs tuned to suit them. Or the ink they like. I personally (thats me and nobody else) think that the nibs are just fine, just find an ink that works and enjoy. The nibs are damned good. True, some nibs may be in need of a tune or even a full swap. Ever seen a car costing £20,000 broke down on the hard shoulder? Yep, me too, it happens. Customer Service: 10/10 Ahhhh I had to slip this one in. It was delivered within the week. Can't fault that. Pictures: Please find attached a set of snaps to support my ramblings. They DO NOT convey the depth of colours or the weight and feel, the ones found on the CS site are far better. What the online marketing pictures DO NOT show is the real size of the pen. The size chart CS have online is great if you have another CS pen yourself to compare it to. I decided to pose the pen with a very popular modern pen the TWSBI 540 with a 1.1 nib to let people get a sense of the size comparison. I hope you guys find the review useful. D.





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