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  1. Today, You Know which video platform gave me the following suggestion: Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Tadeo
  2. betweenthelens

    Le Stipula Davinci Samurai

    The LE Stipula DaVinci Samurai Review and photography by Laura Elizabeth Bullock Introduction The LE Stipula DaVinci Samurai was produced in a collaborative effort by music publisher Leeds Levy and Chatterley Luxuries’ Bryant Greer. Leeds and I have a mutual friend from the Big Apple Pen Club, Tim Ettenheim. Tim brought the pen to my attention and, along with Leeds, asked that I write a review of and photograph this unique pen, which is available for purchase at https://chatterleyluxuries.com/product/stipula-samurai-rose-gold-overlay-limited-edition-fountain-pen/ I am in no way affiliated with Stipula or Chatterley Luxuries and this review is a noncommercial effort. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7284.jpg Appearance and Design The barrel of this exquisite pen is transparent blue resin with rose gold vermeil overlay bonded permanently to solid sterling silver. The overlay is hallmarked in three places with 925 and a five-pointed star followed by 1770 and FI for Firenze. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7299.jpg The gorgeous overlay echoes the legendary tosei gusoku armor of Japanese samurai right down to the gilt kanamono used on the helmets, shoulder guards and plates. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7300.jpg The pen's trim is also rose gold vermeil as is the unique sword-like clip with the suggestion of a samurai at the top of the clip. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7314.jpg http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7311.jpg The clear end of the blue resin barrel shows 0/18 as the pen is limited to 18 worldwide and this particular pen is a prototype. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7321.jpg Perhaps the most interesting and most unusual feature of the Samurai is its retractable nib that appears with a clockwise twist of the barrel through a half-moon shaped door bearing the Stipula name and disappears with a counterclockwise twist as it’s retracted and the door closes. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7326.jpg http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7328.jpg http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7330.jpg Finally, this Stipula pen features an interchangeable writing system. When the nib is retracted, the barrel pulled out and the universal cartridge or piston converter removed, the section and nib can be easily removed by applying light pressure to the section’s metal wings and gently pulling. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7309.jpg Construction and Quality The Samurai is extremely well made and hand-designed with superb attention to detail. Its sturdiness is apparent in its heft and solid construction. A firm grasp is required to remove the barrel and once the barrel is replaced, there is a satisfying, solid click. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7303.jpg The removable writing section is also of solid construction with a tab and hole mechanism to ensure its proper replacement without incurring damage to the nib. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7335.jpg Size The Samurai is 136-140 mm (5.35-5.51 inches) in length and the diameter is 16.1-18 mm (0.63-0.71 inches). Its weight is 61 grams (2.15 ounces). Its formidable size and girth are impressive. Because of this, it may be better suited to larger hands. However, this would not preclude usage by a woman. I am perfectly content using this pen and I can comfortably grip the barrel and write for an extended period of time. Nib and Performance This is a medium 14 kt. gold nib with the Stipula leaf logo in two places and a 585 gold mark, meaning the gold is near this percentage (58%) pure. http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7331.jpg http://i1231.photobucket.com/albums/ee513/betweenthelens/IMG_7333.jpg The nib is not a flex nib; however, it does provide amazing line variation depending upon the angle at which the nib is used and how much pressure one exerts when writing. The paper I used to assess the nib’s performance included a Rhoda Webnotebook, L. Writing Paper made in Japan by Life Company, 60 lb. Fabriano sketch paper, a Moleskine lined Legendary Notebook, and 100 % cotton Crane Monarch sheets with Ecruwhite Kid Finish. The inks I used were J. Herbin Rouge Hematite, Waterman Florida Blue, Akkerman Passage Blauw, and Pelikan 4001 Violet. The Samurai performed well on all papers with all inks although the Moleskine did not provide quite the level of quality writing experience as the other papers. This paper paled in comparison to the similarly smooth, but higher quality, writing surfaces of the Rhodia and Life Company Japanese papers and there was even pleasant feedback on both the Crane and Fabriano papers. The pen performs better on higher quality, heavier papers but it must be mentioned that there was no skipping or hard starting on any of the papers with any of the inks. The pen performed well inked with the Pelikan 4001 Violet, the driest of the inks. There were consistent uniform color and even some subtle shading apparent. This pen was made for the very saturated J. Herbin Rouge Hematite with the extremely beautiful green-gold shading standing out and the rich color flowing freely. My Stipula Gladiator with medium nib is a wonderful pen; however, its nib doesn’t have the range of this Stipula Samurai and the Rouge Hematite in my Gladiator puts down a red line with no shading. I have to use a flex nib, such as the one on my Bayard LE 4 or the nib on my Morrison’s gold overlay ring top to see the shading. The Waterman Florida Blue (a wetter ink than the Pelikan 4001) and the Akkerman Passage Blauw (perhaps the wettest of the four inks) have a discernable flow, more so than that of the J. Herbin and especially more than that of the Pelikan 4001. Filling System The filling system utilizes a universal cartridge or piston converter, both of which are included with the pen. The converter took up the ink immediately. Cost and Value This pen retails for $1095. In my opinion, the pen is worth it. The quality and construction, the understated elegant design, uniqueness and outstanding performance are worthy enough to commandeer such a price. Conclusion This pen provides a truly luxurious writing experience. I’ve used it consistently for several days and for as much as an hour at a time. I’ve not experienced anything approaching fatigue or cramping, even owing to the pen’s size. If I were working a desk job, I would use this pen as a daily writer, however ostentatious it would appear; it’s that comfortable and that lovely with which to write. If one is looking to turn heads with a work of art that also happens to be a fountain pen, this is also the pen for you.
  3. Ok, some of you might remember the Summer of 2013 and our hunt for the OMAS MoMA, which ended in a fire sale at some of the german Manufactum sales-points - and a couple of happy FPN-members. I will make it short for not keeping you up for too long: there seems to be a new possibility with a different pen. As Manufactum in former times was dedicated to "the real cool stuff", they are right now on the way to "me too" - and they clean out their shops again. What I found this time is the Stipula DaVinci in two different models - black resin and ebonite in different colours. Most of them are "M", some are "1.1 Italic", all nibs are 14k, not titanium. Based on this I just ask: shall we do something like this again? To be honest: I already bought 4 of them... ... but I am sure they have at minimum again some 5 or 6 laying around. Resume: if this is interesting, let me know. And in general: this is not meant as a business sale or something like this - the thing in 2013 started and ended as (from my point of view) something like "friends help friends". If this is against the rules, feel free to eliminate this thread. It was not my idea to interfere with the guidelines of FPN. Ciao - Peter PS: they ask for 250,- Euro, independent from the model...
  4. Hello all! It's been a while since my last review, but I need to take some time now to review the fruits of a collaboration between my desire for a beautiful work and a FPN member! I have been writing, for over a year, a large scale piece of music dedicated to the life of Leonardo da Vinci. He is a great person hero of mine (and rightly so). It's near completion, and is a good 40 minutes long. I am excited for it's premiere this coming year in New York. I was fascinated with the "Leonardo" by Montblanc, but a hefty $3,600 price tag held me back. HOWEVER, When I emailed a gentleman by the name of Tim Self, of our own Fountain Pen Network, he explained to me that he could create a truly custom piece for me. I will explain details as we move along. (Before we begin, I will note that there is some degree of bias in my review. Tim and I discussed what would be on the pen, how it would look, etc.. I will not be offended should you disagree with my review, but I will defend this bad boy!) Appearance/Design: The pen is visually dazzling. The amount of care and craftsmanship are amazing. Every time I look at the pen, it's a new adventure. Due to my musical background, Tim had explained that he could take the "Flying" melody from my work (and from da Vinci's fascination with flight) and print it right onto the pen cap! The body says Leonardo da Vinci and has gold inlay over the metal. Opposite that there is a print of the wing Leonardo used to study flying, and a small backward inscription from the corresponding codex. I wish I could award a 11/10 for this exceptional work, but alas, I can only offer a 10/10. Function: This baby is heavy. But, the cap does not post which is good for balance. The pen sits quite comfortably between my index finger and thumb. As for the use of the pen, the ink is delivered evenly, precisely, and very cleanly. I have had no trouble with bleeding with even the lightest of manuscripts. Nib: Tim fitted her with a Bock nib. Stainless steel, very sturdy, yet still elegant. I'm very happy, indeed. Filling System: I was told that this pen will accept universal cartridges. Being a stickler for tradition, I enjoy bottled ink or a well. I use Waterman ink almost exclusively, unless a brand (i.e. my Parker) specifies using another. The converter Tim gave me was long and very easy to fill. It is quick to suck up ink and remains leak free. Converter leaks have been an issue lately, unfortunately, so this is nice. Not surprisingly, I will award 10/10. Though she is heavy, I could still use this pen on a daily basis. It is VERY comfortable. I'll just need an insurance plan, first . Below, you can see the "Wing" and the writing from the journal on flight. Below is the name of the hero honored by this pen! Here is the melody of flight from my piece "The Da Vinci Trail" expertly placed about the cap. And here, pay attention to the curvature and lines drawn out by the pens body and converter. It may just be me, but I particularly like the dynamics of width. It adds character Cost, Value and Cost/Value This beauty only cost me about $500, yet it is priceless due to the fact that it is MY pen, and it is the only one like it. I must say that I had VERY high expectations when receiving this pen, and they have still be far exceeded. In point, I should tell you directly that it obviously does not matter if the pen maker is a large company, or a small operation like Tim's. Having used a Montblanc on several occasions (executive series), I can safely say that there is no reason for a $3,600 cost, and works of art just as beautiful and just as well made (or better) are out there. I wouldn't trade MY pen for anything. Thanks for the many years of happy writing I will enjoy, Tim Self! Cost: $460 Value: Much more than that. Cost/Value ratio: Since this is a priceless possession of mine, the cost to value ratio isn't quite fair to say Overall Rating: Due to the wealth of beauty in my new piece, the unique qualities it shares, and the general excellence in it's writing, I award 10/10 for this pen. Again, I wish I could award more so I'm sure you see my point! Thanks for reading, and please, if I missed something, or you have questions, don't hesitate to ask! I have all good things to say! Sincerely, Kevin E. Phillips II
  5. http://sheismylawyer.com/She_Thinks_In_Ink/Inklings/slides/2013-Ink_865.jpg http://sheismylawyer.com/She_Thinks_In_Ink/Inklings/slides/2013-Ink_865b.jpg

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