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  1. Came back from Chennai, here's what I got The pens are all Gama pens except the first one which I found out was a Baoer Skywalker pen. I got all of the Gama pens from NSC Bose Road, the Baoer was from a store called Variety Pen in Pondy Bazaar, T Nagar. Unfortunately there was a shop I wanted to go to, called Pen Point there but the shop was closed. Perhaps I went on the wrong day. The Jinhao ink (150 rupees) was obtained from the aforementioned Variety Pen, the Camlin Scarlet Red (20 rupees) was actually in a shop called Jinnah Stationery in Pondicherry. The Waterman Absolute Brown (425 rupees) I got from Makoba on Nungambakkam High Road. Nibs were from Krishna Mart on NSC Bose Road as well. Got 1 Wality nib and 3 #5 nibs, all for about 125 rupees. The Baoer pen was 290 rupees and the Gama pens were all less than 200 rupees each. P.S. I was looking for Daytone Blue-Black but no shop had it. More images:
  2. Four and a half years after my last visit to Madras (Chennai), came a chance to visit the city again, in the middle of January this year for one week. I was desirous to meet up with my pen purveyor, the soft spoken, genial and humble L. Subramaniam of ASApens. He enthusiastically agreed to show me some of the pen shops that he himself frequents. We spent some good and fruitful time discussing pens, meeting a pen and watch collector and seeing the pen shops. Of course, we visited Gem and Co at Parry's. The Gem and Co. trio: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010458.jpg along with Subramaniam standing on the far right: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010460.jpg The display cases: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010453.jpg Subramaniam checking out a displayed newspaper clipping about Gem and Co. http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010452.jpg The Madras High Court as seen from Gem and Co: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010451.jpg Of Course, Pratap showed off some of his beauties, this set of perfectly machined acrylic desk pens: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010456.jpg http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010457.jpg Also some rare to see sights for the casual pen collector: Vials of genuine nib tipping balls from WC Heraeus, Germany, wish I could show you folks their nib retipping setup... http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/20140111_161501.jpg http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/20140111_161449.jpg Some apparently original Parker USA repair equipment: Nib knockout block: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010445.jpg Vac wrench with a serial number: http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010450.jpg Over the years, the shop had accumulated a pile of junker Parker pens. Pratap apparently decided to use up at least some part of this pile to make a batch of bodies matching the Parker Vacumatic caps in his possession. http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010461.jpg http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010462.jpg http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii197/hari317/Madras%20pen%20shops/Jan2014/P1010467.jpg There is more, but maybe in a later post. Cheers! Hari
  3. On a family trip, and I'm going to have the opportunity to visit some pen shops. According to Google Maps, Makoba seems to be a good place. P.S. I'm particularly on the look out for a flex pen, and #6 nibs (to replace the one on my Wality 71JT), and FP-friendly paper (like Rhodia). However if a pen shop you know doesn't have these I'd still be interested in visiting
  4. Praneeth

    Greetings From Chennai, India

    Hello everyone! I'm Praneeth, from Chennai, India. I'm a freelance photographer and marketer. I've been an avid lurker on the fountain pen network for quite a while, however I wish to be an active participant in this wonderful community henceforth. My love for fountain pens surfaced during my time in primary school. More specifically, during the shift from using a pencil to handling a pen. My first fountain pen was an eye dropper manufactured by Camlin. It's been nearly two decades since, but I can never forget, my first pen was a scratchy mess. Being what it was - An inexpensive eyedropper, it was prone to abruptly leaking and blotting. Refilling it meant that my hands would remain blue for the rest of the day and if I was lucky, I wouldn't have any ink stains on my uniform. Underwhelmed by the experience, I switched to gel / rollerball pens for a while, for the sake of convenience. Thankfully, soon after my insipid experience, a fountain pen with a cartridge converter system caught my fancy during a routine visit to the stationery shop to replenish supplies. I still remember with great fondness, this pen was buttery smooth, the nib would just glide on paper with excellent feedback. Younger me found it most convinient to refill - just replace the cartridges and most importantly, the pen wouldn't blot / drip ink even when shook ardently - an integral quality for a pen used by a young student, I felt. With no second thoughts, I made the plunge and there was no looking back. Only a fountain pen would feel right in my hands, and hence I've never actively used any other kind of pen ever since. Initially lured by the comfort and utility of fountain pens, as the years passed, I began to appreciate them as individual creations. Over the years, I've come across numerable fountain pens, mostly inexpensive, mass produced ones however, I've been privileged to use some finer pens from more exotic brands during more recent times. As much as I hate to admit, I'm no longer in possession of my pens from my early years - lost a few of them, some had been destroyed beyond repair by my childhood self. A little more than a decade ago, I began collecting pens and these I guard with dear life. They have a lot of sentimental values to me, each with its own story. My current collection includes a Reynolds fountain pen (Unable to find the name), a couple of Parkers (Indian manufactured ones) a Jinhao 159, a few Schneiders and my most recent acquisition - The Pelikan M1000. I will share more pictures when time permits. I own a few bottles of ink, some inks worth mentioning - Diamine Syrah, Diamine Jade Green, J. Herbin Emerald of Chivor & Pelikan Edelstein Aventurine. Hope to hold onto this and only add more as the years pass. I apologise for the rather long introductory post, I just felt the urge to put it out there. Looking forward to network with other members and share experiences on Fountain Pen Network. Thank you for approving me! Regards, Praneeth
  5. Hello Everyone Its an intimidating task to write something about the famed Gem & Co. from Chennai, the creator and seller of some truly world class Indian fountain pens since 1920s. That's enough time for the world to spin a lot around its axis, witnessing rise and fall of different eras and trends, embracing changes with open hands but at the same time discarding some sweet little memories and moments to the endless flow of time. In another kind of world, Mr. M.C. Cunnan, and his business partner S. Venkat Rangam Chetty, started one store for writing instruments in the bustling Parry’s Corner area in Chennai. At that time India was under British rule, Chennai was Madras, and it was the capital of the whole Madras Presidency. Fountain pens were the means of writing, and business flourished. Gem and Company gradually became one of the largest pen stores in southern parts of India and were dealers in most of the famous brands of that time like Parker, Sheaffer and Pilot. They also carried out repair work on these pens. After a few years into the business, they decided to start designing and producing their own brand of high quality fountain pens. And thus the brand "Gama" was born. The 'Great' Gama Pahelwan was the stage-name of Indian wrestler Ghulam Muhammad. He defeated most of the big wrestlers from all around the world during the first three decades of the twentieth century. Gem and company decided to name their own pens in reverence of this amazing strongman, signifying both the strength and the performance of these pens. It was around 1940s that these pens were introduced in the Indian market. Initially these pens were made in England. Made of good ebonite material and having quality gold nibs, Gama brand quickly gained popularity among Indian fountain pen users and gradually became a big name for our fountain pen Industry. Long gone are those golden days, with advent of Ball point pens, fountain pen industry declined steadily. After Mr. Cunnan, his son Mr. M. Prabhat Kumar became the owner, followed by his son, the third generation in the family, Mr. Pratap Kumar. The shop stands at the same location witnessing the rise and fall of fountain pens, the workshop for repair and production stands a few blocks away. The number of skilled repairmen and shop workers going through steady decline, the number of people interested in fountain pens dwindling by the day. Mr. Pratap is a through gentleman, responding to queries and greetings heartily. Many models are not produced anymore, steel nibs has taken the place of golden ones, still Gem and company remains creator of some of the best fountain pen models from India. Presently GAMA pens are available online through ASA pens website, and either Mr. Subramaniam or Mr. Pratap can be contacted for customization. Today I am going to review GAMA Kuyil. The word 'Kuyil' in Tamil means Cuckoo bird. Most probably the name of this elegantly designed pen drew inspiration from the beautiful singing of the bird. This is a large, strong, beautiful looking eyedropper ebonite pen in matte black finish, with a reasonably smooth 'Indian' fine nib. 1. Appearance & Design: The pen came in a black velvet pouch with Gama written at the lower end. This pen looks very impressive. It is a flat topped rod shaped pen with slight tapering towards both ends. The top of the cap is a bit larger than the bottom of the pen. The cap has a chrome clip with the top finial flushed with the body, thus concealing the ring of the clip. There is no end ring at the base of the cap, but that actually matches the overall design of the pen. The clip is a flat sturdy clip with good springiness. The cap takes about two and half turns to screw on the body and there is no tightness.The section is glossy black finish and it compliments the brushed body. The section gently tapers towards the nibs and ends in a chrome coloured monotone no 6 nib. Just before the end, the section has a small flaring ring like finger rest for easy support of fingers. The section is quite thick in comparison to other ebonite pens. Branding in the form of the word 'Gama' is written on the barrel in italic script, and the quality of this engraving is very good. The words are put down with crisp margins. To compliment the brushed body, both the top and bottom of the pen is of glossy black surface. The Cap ends in a beveled edge which is again polished. The Gama Kuyil 2. Construction & Quality : The first thing I noticed with most Gama pens is the thickness of the ebonite. The walls of both the body and section is very thick. This makes the pens quite heavy in comparison to other ebonite pens, but at the same time the feel is amazing. It does the name Gama full justice as the pens appear very strong and tough. The brawny pens looks premium in hand. The brushed finish is very well executed and the feeling is great to the fingers. I didn't find any lathe marks or impurities in the ebonite, which is a common complaints with Indian ebonite pens. The cap has one minute breather hole, which is in line with the Gama branding on the barrel. The monotone nib has some simple designs and Gama written beneath that. No nib grade is written. The feed is a simple ebonite feed. The section screws on the body by about 4 turns, there is some tightness initially while turning and there is no leak if some silica gel is used carefully. Overall this pen will last a lifetime if used with due care and the brushed look would prevent scratches and marks appearing on body or cap on extensive use. 3. Weight & Dimensions: This is a jumbo sized pen. I think this is meant to be used un-posted, as the length gets ridiculous for proper gripping when posted, unless, obviously one has a giant palm. Its a bit heavy pen, but the balance is perfect. The section is very thick due to thick ebonite wall, but this doesn't feel uncomfortable while long writing sessions. I personally prefer pens with a section thickness of around 11.5 mm, but still didn't have much problem while using it for the last few weeks. From Left to Right: Pilot Metropolitan, Lamy Safari, Gama Kuyil Length capped: 152 mm Length of uncapped pen: 138 mm Posted length: 180 mm (!!!!) Nib length: 24 mm Diameter of section: 16 mm- 13 mm Cap length: 70 mm Ink capacity- 3.5 ml 4. Nib & Performance: The pen comes with a friction fit Monotone #35 steel nib with Indian fine grade by default, which is between European medium and Japanese fine. Its a smooth nib with a hint of feedback which helps good control during writing. The nib had a bit of scratchiness out of the box, but these feeds take some time to get primed as well, so after using it for three days, it became very smooth and pleasant. One thing I stress here, Indian fountain pen makers can accommodate any International nib as per customer's choice these days, if requested at the time of order. So, one can get this pen made with other nib grades as well. Personally, I am a big fan of Indian smooth fine nibs and thus have many of the pens in their default states. There is no flex in the nib. I don't know whether golden nibs are still available with Gama, but they might have some left with them. 5. Filling System & Maintenance: This is an eye-dropper pen with huge ink capacity. I encountered no burping issues, but as a precaution I keep the ink level more than one third of the barrel. Even then, the ink capacity is very helpful for long writing sessions. There is occasional burping if there is large fluctuations in outside temperatures all of a sudden. Custom fitted Schimdt nib and feed can prevent these occurrences. I think the maker can accommodate other filling systems as well on request, though I personally haven't asked for any such changes in my Gama pens. 6. Cost & Value: The pen is priced at around INR 1200-1500 ( around US $38 ) according to customization. Its a fairly cheap pen with simple design but great appearance and strong built. One can use this cheap pen as a daily writer without compromising on the quality side. The Cons: The big size, thick section and weighty feel may not appeal to some users, particularly fans of slim pens. Eyedroppers are meant for advanced users as there is every chance of some leaking or burping, which may vary from particular copy to another copy. Only 'fine' nib grade by default is a problem that may require customization. 7. Conclusion : The hallmark of 'Gama' brand is the quality in materials and performance, in this respect the Kuyil is a great value for money pen. This one is a must have pen for every Indian fountain pen lover. One can contact ASA pens and Gem and company to check for availability and customization for nib and filling mechanism. Mr. Subramaniam from ASA pens have one particularly helpful option of 'fountain pen testing', under which he tests the nibs of particular pens before dispatch. So, if one is not sure about the Gama nibs, they can opt for the testing option I have six Gama pens at present and hardly faced any problems regarding Gama nibs. ASA website ASA Whatsapp no of Mr. Subramaniam - +91 9176607660 ASA email- asapens.in@gmail.com, unik.services@hotmail.com No of Mr. Pratap- +91 9884209055
  6. This is in continuation of my posts to showcase some of Indian Fountain pens of yester-years. I have written a series about some rare finds and this post comes after a long gap. My other posts of this can be found here- Ritesharp Fountain Pens Ricoh Sabena-75 Swan VIP I had recently been to Alandur- an area in Chennai,for one of my friend's wedding. As usual I made some time to explore some local shops for fountain pens. Interestingly one of the shops had a collection of fountain pens from a brand called "Owner". I have heard of this brand but it was for first time I could hold a pen made by owner. There were 2 models which got my interest. One was a Classic Jumbo Pen by name "Officer" and the other was a Mini Demonstrator Pen "Mini-T". I picked a box of each of this. Further searching and investigation lead me to "The Raja Pen Company", who were the owners and manufacturers of these pens. It was a pleasure for me to find out that right in the city where I lived existed this manufacturer and his facility, though like most pen makers they had a few hundred designs in the Ball-point and roller-ball categories. They had some remarkable Fountain Pen Models too. About Raja Pen Company- The Raja Pen Company is the a 40 year old company and they are manufacturing quality fountain pens under the brands Owner, Swissco and their most recent Cartridge pen series Geb Zee, In my interactions with the owners I could make out that they are serious players and offered to make/customize any model for me. For more information refer their website here As informed I picked up 2 models- Officer and Mini T About Officer- The officer is an eyedropper pen, with a Jumbo ink Capacity. The pen sports a beautiful cap and a very sturdy clip. The pen is a acrylic moulded and the cap is a thin gold coloured sheet over a plastic inner cap. The Cap has guilloche pattern etched, giving it a stunning look. The cap top is enameled with a black band. The Nib is a local made nib and I found it extremely smooth (swiss point). The pen uses a highly finned feed, which I think is made by them locally, as I have not seen this feed in other brands. This pen is now my current favorite. It feels full in my hand and its a pleasure to write. The Cap is an eye candy for the eyes. About Mini T- This pen is called a Baby Pen, maybe because of its size. The pen is hardly 80 mm capped and 100 mm posted. Its a curio pen but is very much functional. Has a hooded nib and is also a smooth writer. The pen comes in 5 transparent colours Red, Blue, Green, Yellow and Orange. I hope you enjoyed reading about this pen and the new Indian Company. Thanks for looking!
  7. hari317

    The Gama Supreme

    Gama is the house brand of the Gem and Co, an exclusive pens store in Parrys corner, Chennai. South India. You can read more about the shop here: link. Gamas are typically short, thick pens. My grandpa and particularly my uncle had told me about the gundu (Tamil word for fat) Gama pena when I used to pester them with questions about the pens that they used in their days... I think the name Gama has also come from the common word for strong, after the undefeated Indian wrestler Gama Pehelwan. link The pen in the review is called the Supreme and its construction befits the name Gama. It is a very big and strong pen and is very well engineered IMO. Available in two colors: Green, brown Ripple: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9117.jpg http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9119.jpg http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9123.jpg ED pen: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9126.jpg Well made in-situ inner cap: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9124.jpg Thick construction for long life: Barrel walls: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9127.jpg Section walls: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9128.jpg The names are deep engraved on the barrel, perhaps by using old pantographic machines... http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9129.jpg http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9130.jpg The pen comes with a Standard Indian no 10 (35mm) IPG nib, I switched the nibs out with my favorites, Indian no 10 on one and Indian no 12(40mm) on the other. http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9131.jpg http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9132.jpg http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9133.jpg Some comparison of the Supreme with other Indians and one German in the stable: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9134.jpg L-R: Brahmam, Deccan White MP, Gama, Gama, the puny 149. With some foreign heavyweights: http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9135.jpg L-R: Gama, Gama, DT Sho Genkai, DT Mikado and the 149. I know, this pic makes the 149 seem like a 144. The writing: The pen is very well balanced, i have used it for fast jotting during review meetings as well as extended writing over the last week. It has performed really well for me. http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9136.jpg http://i1313.photobucket.com/albums/t543/hari_317/GamaSupreme/IMG_9138.jpg Dimensions: Capped: 158mm Open: 148mm Posted: 180mm Cap Dia: 19mm Barrel Dia: 17.5mm Section Length: 22mm Section dia: 15.5mm tapers to 13.4mm Nib exposed length with the stock no 10 IPG: 22.3mm These are fully handmade pens and I have observed some piece to piece dimension variations. Cost, and most important answer to the question which most of you ask me, where to buy this from: The pen is sold by Gem at a very reasonable price considering the workmanship, materials and the size. If you cannot visit Gem and co personally, Chennai based ASAPENS (link1 link2) are doing an excellent service of making Indian brands available at Indian prices widely. My several transactions with them have been flawless. NAYY. I hope you enjoyed this review. Cheers! Hari
  8. I had gone dormant from the forum for a variety of reasons. Back in action now, and no reason why I should not keep going steadily from now. Here is a brief, one-page, hand-written review of my brand new Gama eyedropper fountain pen in red and black acrylic. Excuse the low quality photos of the pen and the scan, all taken with a low end tab camera. A copy of this is up on my fountain pen blog: https://fpensnme.wordpress.com/2016/02/06/a-one-page-review-of-an-acrylic-gama/; and a travelogue on my visit to Gem and Co this morning: https://viewwide.wordpress.com/2016/02/06/a-tradition-of-fountain-pens-in-chennai/
  9. I do not whether this question is aked before. I was wondering whether it is possible to get vintage parkers(say 51) in Chennai for good prices. Fellow FPNers help me
  10. I laid my hands on a new pen sold by Gem and Co in Madras. The pen appears to be a homage to the legendary Skyline pen. The Skyline was a popular pen in India with several clones already made by Indian pen companies like Wilson etc, some of which are documented here: https://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/index.php/topic/146528-indian-celluloid-pens-with-a-theme/ The pen is petite. Closed: 133mm Open: 122 with nib Posted: 153mm Section dia: 9mm tapers down to 8mm and flares up to 9mm again at the base of nib Barrel dia: 11mm steps down to 10mm for cap Cap dia: 13mm The pen is very nice to look at and gracefully shaped like the original, but is offered in Ebonite in 4 colors, I bought a set of these pens, one in each color. http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0044.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0043.jpg The clip is spring loaded with a lever at the top which can be depressed to open the clip up. The clip is good, but I found the tension a bit floppy. It is easy to re-tension the clip by unscrewing the cap top finial and bending the washer towards the clip. http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0046.jpg The Stock pen: The stock pen comes with friction fitted yellow steel nib marked Gama, 5 year point and an extra long ebonite feeder. http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0047.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0054.jpg I am not a very big fan of the stock nib, it is an acceptable nib, but requires some tuning to get it to write the way I like(YMMV), so I decided to fit in a Schmidt nib unit instead. My first attempt, with the black pen, was a disaster . There is very little space. The wall thicknesses come out to 0.25mm in some places. http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0055.jpg I did not give up and decided to proceed with extreme caution the next time, i decided to hack the green one. Success! http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0048.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0049.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0050.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0051.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0052.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0053.jpg Stock Vs Modified: http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0056.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSkyline/IMG_0057.jpg There is not enough space in the section as well as the barrel to accept a converter. I am using the modified pen in ED mode with Pelikan black ink. It is my sole pen at work today. Gem have priced this pen very attractively (I purchased from owner of asapens). In my view, it represents a very good value for money, beautiful ebonite pen, despite some shortcomings like a slightly less springy pocket clip and the lack of an inner cap (whether it has any detriment on performance remains to be seen, I have only just begun to use the pen). Cheers! Hari
  11. I had originally posted this as a reply to another post. Someone kindly suggested that I should create a separate post for this. Well, suggestion taken, and thank you. On my last visit to the Gem shop in Chennai to pick up a Gama Royal, I got into a discussion on Oversize pens - and I was shown this Gama Acrylic clear/see-through pen. Of course, I just had to have it. Apart from a couple of Wality/Airmail pens with clear barrels, I did not have an Indian ED Demonstrator. This one is beautiful just for the transparent section and the way in which the nib and feed clearly show through. . It is approximately the size of a Guider Zimbo and slightly smaller than a Deccan Masterpiece.. Hope you enjoy this. Cheers, Sudhir
  12. hari317

    The Gama Saral

    The Gem and Company in Chennai, India is a pen shop in business for over 80 years now. In addition to selling third party pens, this shop manufactures and sells their in house fountain pens under the brand name Gama. Previously, I have documented their following models: Supreme part 1 Supreme Part 2 Kuyil Padpad/Raja Kambar part 1 Kambar part 2 In addition, some information about the shop itself can be found in the following links: Visit report 2008 Visit report 2014 This Gama "Gundu pena" (fat pen) was always popular among the FP user folks of Chennai, in recent times the owner of gem and co and their dealer ASApens.in have been very active in bringing out a slew of new models to fit varying hands, tastes and sizes. The Saral is, I think, their latest offering. Saral means "easy" in Hindi. It also can mean "simple" depending on the usage. I think translated into English, the Saral would be called "The Gama Simpleton". My first impression was "simple form, functional pen". Cylindrical cap, functional spring steel ball clip, simple tapered barrel to allow the cap to be posted, barrel length is sufficient to use unposted, ebonite for keeping the weight light, and hard wearing brushed finish. The dimensions of the pen are as under: Capped: 148mm Uncapped: 132mm(including nib length) Barrel dia:14mm Cap dia: 15.6mm Section dia: 12.5mm at barrel threads tapering to 11mm just before the nib base flare. Posted: 177mm The pens came to me without the nib and feed fitted, I wanted to do my own fitting to it since I rarely use the stock nibs anyway. Closed http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9887.jpg Opened http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9888.jpg Section removed:The ends of the cap and barrel are polished. http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9889.jpg 800 and JoWo nib units installed: http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9890.jpg http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9891.jpg Size comparison with an old M800: http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9892.jpg Finally a group photo of the all Gama models in my collection: http://i1269.photobucket.com/albums/jj582/hari-317/GamaSaral/IMG_9886.jpg L-R: Kambar Mk-II, Kambar Mk-I, Postable Kambar, Supreme Flattop, Supreme Cigar, Kuyil, Hawk, Eyas, Raja, Saral and Popular. I did not know what will arrive in the post, when the Saral was described to me. However when I received these pens on Friday, I found that I like the simple lines of this pen very much, enough to consider making me carry one as the sole carry on the two day out of town trip that I will go on Monday morning. Cheers! Hari
  13. Below is a hand-written review of my newest acquisition. This is an ebonite pen from Gem and Co., Chennai, India, called Gama Kuyil, purchased from ASA pens, Chennai, India. [a copy of this review will be posted to fpensnme.blogspot.in]. Size comparison with Ranga Handmade Duofold and Jinhao (or Bulow) X450.
  14. arunura

    The Gama Kuyil

    The gama kuyil is an ebonite pen from Gem and co. based from Chennai, India. The deccan ambassador and the gama kuyil. A minor diversion: Among the deccan pens I prefer the Deccan Advocate Sr. and Jr. models. My wife prefers the Deccan Bullet Sr. My wife trying out the Kuyil From left to right: Deccan Advocate, Deccan Ambassador, Gama Kuyil, Gama Acrylic Demonstrator, Gama Ebonite Jr. A note on the Indian Ebonite pens I own: Since these pens are hand-made and the quality control is not supreme the same model can vary in quality across pens. If one reads the above review it is clear that I am not satisfied with my Deccan Ambassador. The reason why I have openly expressed my distaste for the brand is because I used a Deccan Ambassador of another fellow pen collector and found similar issues while using it. I know of a few people who use Deccan pens who have a similar opinion and I thought I could voice it. I purchased other pens from the company before coming to the following conclusion (Please bear in mind these conclusions are from using the pens that I have encountered from Deccan and are entirely personal): The deccan pens are in general over-priced. I have no problem with the price if the quality is good. I bought a white deccan masterpiece and sold it to my friend because I hated the aerometric converter and because the nib was OK at best (I admit it looked pretty and that was the only reason he bought it off me). I have no problems with the Advocate pens. Although I still think the pens are over-priced. I don't use my deccan pens as much as, say, my Wality or my Gama pens. Whenever I give these pens a try I just end being disappointed. I prefer the Wality Jumbo to the Deccan Advocates (don't get me wrong the ebonite is nice to touch). Again, these are my personal experiences





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