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  1. Pen Pit Stop : Lamy Dialog 3 PianoWhite Welcome to the Pen Pit Stop. Here you will find reviews of pens that already have some mileage on them. More specifically, these reviews are of pens that are in my personal collection, and that have been in use for at least a year. I thought it would be fun to do it this way – no new & shiny pens here, but battered vehicles that have been put to work for at least a year. Let’s find out how they have withstood the ravages of time. The fountain pen that arrives at the pit stop today is the Lamy Dialog 3. This pen with a retractable nib – from a design by Franco Clivio, who also designed the Lamy Pico – features a very streamlined and modern look. The PianoWhite edition shown here truly is the Apple of fountain pens, minimalistic and beautiful – a reinvention of the classic writing instrument. These were all aspects that attracted me and drew me in. I finally gave in and purchased this pen in December 2016. Let’s find out more about it. The first thing you’ll notice about this pen is how minimalistic it is : a simple pianowhite cigar shape with two parallel lines on the body that break the monotony. Branding of the pen is almost absent. Only a small engraved “LAMY” between the parallel lines at the end of the body gives away the name of the company. No cap, just a small round valve at the clip end. This is a retractable pen, and this ball valve closes off the nib chamber. With a clockwise twist of the barrel, the nib appears and locks into place. An ingenious mechanism! The Dialog 3 is a large and weighty pen. Size wise comparable to a Lamy Safari, but much heavier. There is quite some metal used in the construction, and you definitely feel the weight. This is also a pen with some girth to it, with a barrel diameter of approximately 1.5 cm. For my smaller hands, this pen is actually a bit too large to be comfortable. I love the design, but for me personally this is not the most comfortable pen to write with. Pen Look and Feel The Dialog 3 looks deceptively simple, but hides some sophisticated technology inside. It is a twist-action retractable nib pen, where you simply twist the barrel clock-wise to make the nib appear. To retract the nib, you turn the barrel back counterclockwise until the parallel lines line up on both sides of the pen body. There is some haptic feedback just before the stopping point, and you can feel a firm “click” when the ball valve closes up completely, sealing the nib in its chamber. The Dialog 3 is a cartridge converter pen, which uses the proprietary Lamy format. To fill the pen, you start from the closed position and turn the barrel counterclockwise. This unscrews the two halves of the barrel and gives access to the inner parts of the pen. The Lamy cartridge/converter is inserted into the nib unit, which can also be unscrewed from the body (see photos above). This makes it very easy to clean your pen. My pen came with an M-size 14kt gold Lamy nib, that writes very smooth. Where the Lamy Safari is typically a dry writer, this Dialog 3 is the opposite with a nice and wet ink flow. The pictures above illustrate the size of the Lamy Dialog 3 in comparison with a standard Lamy Safari. Both pens are roughly equal in size. But the Dialog 3 pen is a lot heavier, and also has more girth to it. As such, it actually feels like a much bigger pen. Pen Characteristics Build Quality : build quality is simply superb – there is quite some intricate technology hidden within the pen body, but even after 4 years of use all these mechanical parts still work perfectly. One thing to be aware of: the clip is on the nib side of the pen. You can feel it when gripping the pen, but it’s not really bothersome. But it is also quite close to the nib. Clip and nib line up, but this line-up is not always perfect. With my pen, there is a very slight misalignment of 1° or so. Almost invisible, but once you notice it, you cannot unsee it. If this makes you go crazy, the Dialog 3 might not be a pen for you. With the PianoWhite version, you also have to be extra careful with staining (but that’s a given for any white pen). Weight & Dimensions : this is a heavy pen due to all the metal used in the construction. It’s about the same size as a Lamy Safari, but with a larger diameter of the pen body (about 1.5 cm in diameter). The pen feels quite large in my hand – for me it’s just a bit too big and heavy to be truly comfortable. Filling System : this is a cartridge-converter that uses the proprietary Lamy format. To check ink levels, you have to open up the pen to expose the cartridge. There is no way to check the ink level from the outside (no ink window). Nib & Performance : the 14k gold nib on this pen writes very smooth, and flows nice and wet. It wrote perfectly, right out of the box. Price : at the time, I purchased the pen for 270 EUR. For this you get beautiful minimalistic pen with a retractable gold nib. Definitely an eye-catcher. In my opinion, good value for money. Conclusion With the Dialog 3 PianoWhite, Lamy produced the Apple of fountain pens: a beautiful minimalistic look, with great technology under the hood. A special fountain pen, with a twist-action retractable nib. I really like the design and high quality of this pen. My only complaint is that it is a bit too large & heavy for my smaller hands, and only borderline comfortable for longer writing sessions. The big question is: would I buy this pen again? Well… probably. I really like the timeless design and the retractable nib technology. But as a daily writer, it’s just not comfortable enough for me. I use the pen only occasionally, enjoying it for a time, and then returning it to the pen drawer. Do I consider selling it? No – now that I have it, it’s definitely a keeper.
  2. The Lamy Dialog 3 has just been added to Endless Pens' Hop Drop page. The price comes to US$170, affter applying the 15%-off discount code HOPDROP15 You need to have an account on its Shopify platform to access the product page, and you need to be (separately) subscribed and on Endless Pens' mailing list to be eligible to use the discount code at checkout.
  3. pendemic

    Lamy Dialog 3 - Identify Version

    Hi Folks, How do I identify the version of a (ebay) Lamy Dialog 3 - palladium fountain pen? Does it make much difference if it is 1, 2 or 3? Can it be upgraded if necessary? -thanks I am in a state of pendemonium,
  4. 1nkulus

    Dialog 3: Generation & Dry Out

    Does the Dialog 3 have two or three generations? Gen 1, No window to observe ink in converter. Gen 2, Added window to observe ink in converter. Gen 3 ??? AFAIK, there has been an improvement with the dry out issue. What sort of time frame when leaving the pen unused/uncapped?
  5. The tryst with fountain pens never ends. To add one of the heavier retractable ones in my collection, I had two choices - Fermo or a Dialog 3. And I went with the dialog 3 . Here goes a review for the same. I have also replicated the content with some additional pictures in my blog as the image upload size is limited by this free photo-sharing tool and it re-sizes images to a thumbnail size after a short while. Below is a link to the same: LAMY Dialog 3 Review Motivation A collection of fountain pens is never complete without the retractable ones in your armoury. And the ones which immediately strike an already covetous mind, are of course the Pilots (VPs, decimos and the fermos). Then there are pens like lamy dialog, visconti pininfarina among a few others each with a relatively small sized non-hooded nib. Somehow, the idea of yet another hooded nib became quite less appealing, when I saw the dialog 3. I knew it was quite a heavy pen of the capless clan, and so was the fermo. The Dialog 3 was launched by Lamy back in 2009 designed by one of the contemporary designers, Franco Clivio. The Lamy Pico is another pen by the same Swiss designer. As per LAMY, Franco innovates with basic shapes – circle, square and triangle foregoing anything superfluous in the process to achieve technical necessity. As you would have already discovered, there is no dialog 1 or 2 in fountain pens. Dialog 1 refers to a ball-point pen whereas Dialog 2 is a roller-ball pen, and they belong to different designers. Presentation (6/6) How do you ensure minimalism with luxury? By establishing extravagance incrementally in little steps. A paper sleeve encases a much more attractive black cardboard box etched with the LAMY logo. With the usual papers and a cartridge outside, a thin sheer cloth then encloses a beautifully polished gift box made out beech wood, with a magnetic closure. http://s25.postimg.org/q3eu0za5r/d3_001.jpg http://s25.postimg.org/ml2u4l99r/d3_003.jpg The beauty of the beech-wood box is that it’s alluringly small enough to slip inside your pocket, the pen still dreaming inside with a soft cushion under her head. PS: It could be heavier than your cellphone with the pen inside. http://s25.postimg.org/67iulft4f/d3_004.jpg Design (6/6) A twist-action fountain pen with an advanced design, it comes with two variants – matte-black and palladium finish, with six nib sizes – EF, F, M, OM, B & OB. The silvery palladium finish with chrome polished clip reflects its immediate environmental colours. An etched pair of parallel lines running along the barrel & grip pieces represent the final nib retraction point, when in sync. LAMY is etched between the lines at the end of the barrel. Half-a-twist clockwise from the barrel top-end will open a ball-valve at the nib end of the grip and the nib extends to a click-stop, keeping the pair of parallel lines at diametrically opposite ends. Anticlockwise, post the parallel sync, the barrel can be unscrewed from the grip+clip section, to take out the nib + filling system. There might be an odd slippage in the twist mechanism, but once I tightened the barrel and grip section, it did not occur again. Simply Elegant! http://s25.postimg.org/n0e3xlv73/d3_006.jpg A chrome ball-valve at the nib-end of the grip section protects the nib from damage of dust and drying-out, acting in sync with the twist-mechanism. Secondly, the clip lifts and rescinds with the twist to either facilitate an easier grip or enable clipping it on your pocket. http://s25.postimg.org/ux36jkw1b/lamyd3mech.jpg From the aesthetics of design, the dialog 3 is really majestic. Filling System (6/6) The sum of parts for me is greater than a whole. It’s fun taking the pen apart, because it’s meant to. Once the barrel is unscrewed anticlockwise beyond the synced parallel lines, it separates out to reveal the nib & fill system. The nib/fill system can be unscrewed anticlockwise from the grip section. You will find a standard Z26 converter fitted into the nib section. Again like the 2000, the design elements are so fluidic in both nature and function. The standard capacity is around 0.7-0.8 ml for the Z26 converter as per FPN reviews. http://s25.postimg.org/pcqp8xx67/d3_007.jpg Once you fill her up, you can put the pen together and then there is of course the wow moment. Nib (6/6) – All that matters The 14k two-tone nib comes in four standard sizes (EF, F, M, and two special sizes (OM and OB). Elegantly, designed although in a modern fashion, the white rhodium decor occupies the tines and the tail parts of the nib, while a golden streak runs from the breather hole and diverges itself at the tip end of the nib. Embossed near the tail end are the usual specs of nib size (F), content - 14k-58.5% and of course the LAMY logo. http://s25.postimg.org/52tdtsw1b/d3_009.jpg One thing I did observe, is the difference between the tipping sizes of 14k-fine nibs of lamy - a lamy 2000-F in this case, which is in my current rotation. Though, the 2000 had its nib replaced with a somewhat older-service stock of Fine nibs, you can clearly see the difference between their tipping sizes, even without using a loupe. I am also told that a recent lamy 2000 fine nib may have a similar tip. FPNer maverink can confirm this, since we had bought the pens quite recently (an he went with an F). Physics of it (4/6) – relatively speaking A cylindrical body with a 1.3 cm diameter having around 50 grams of weight, might seem to be a somewhat heavy proposition to wield it as a pen, rather than a weapon. The length of the fully extended pen is similar to a posted MB146. Taking these into account, this pen might not be comfortable for extended writing sessions. However, as far as short note taking sessions or signatures are concerned, believe me it could be a dream to write with. The illusive weight, the copious flow and the buttery nib will ensure a silky glider. Retracted Length ~ 13.8 cmExtended Length ~ 15.7 cmNib Leverage ~ 1.8 cmWeight ~ 50 g http://s25.postimg.org/pkec5g84v/lamyd3compare.jpg Economic Value(4/6) With a street price of USD 250-260, it falls right into a category where you would probably think thrice or may be more, before buying the pen. There is always some discount running on MRP of USD 385 in local stores, which brings the price closer to the street price. Overall (5.3/6) A flawlessly efficient pen as far as the vital parts of the pen are concerned. It has never skipped and all the twist mechanisms operate with a firm intent of functioning. The d3 fine nib is a stiff one and it lays a broader line than a 2000-fine. A wet and intense line, it gives the paper 15 secs, to dry itself, each time it writes. Line variation between horizontal and vertical strokes seems non-existent. A pen to go for if you wish to have a retractable one with one of the smoothest nibs http://s25.postimg.org/9pzfvkje7/d3_0145.jpg I hope you enjoyed the review. Thank you for your time. Best, Sonik
  6. Does anyone feel that some pens aren't worth their price? I own a matte black Vanishing Point and I'm waiting for a piano black Dialog 3 in the mail, and they both are superb pens, but I don't feel that their prices match what I get. The Vanishing Point feels much too utilitarian to be over $100, and I think that the Dialog should only cost $200 max - enough to factor in the beautiful design but also not too high to be unreasonable. On the other hand, the Safari family of pens (or the majority of their swappable-nib pens, really) offers just enough to be worth the $25 threshold with practical nibs and robust bodies. Am I alone on this? What other pens do you feel aren't worth their price? I'm aware that expensive pens are less popular than their counterparts and so the QC tends to be poorer. What do you think?
  7. gerigo

    Jammed Dialog 3

    Hey guys Any advice on a jammed Dialog 3? I purchased this pen maybe about 2 years ago. It has always leaked into the front of the barrel, and I have tried to clean and dry it as much as possible with rolled up paper towels. Otherwise I remember it as a great writing instrument with a VERY wet and juicy fine nib that writes like a medium. After a few fills, I have gone on to other pens and this pen has stayed stored, cleaned and unused. Fast forward to today, I returned to try and use it but the mechanism is completely jammed shut. There is absolutely no way I can twist the barrel to reveal the nib. Should I send the pen in for repairs or is the pen too far gone and should be written off?
  8. dylim1

    Inks For Lamy Dialog 3

    I recently purchased a used Lamy Dialog 3. I wrote with it before going to bed and it didn't start right up in the morning. It required a few line strokes to get it writing again. The ink that I use in it is Noodler's Heart of Darkness. My guess is, it might be the pen and ink combination that causes the problem. What inks have you found to not have startup problems after not using it for 6 to 8 hours, a day or so? Thanks for all your suggestions in advance.
  9. I've researched both. Read reviews. I like both. It's becoming a nightmare deciding between the two. Any significant design issues with either of them? I may not have to strike either of them off my list, but any good reason I should?
  10. Quicksilver

    Lamy Dialog 3 Sticky Door Fix

    Recently, I noticed my Dialog 3 had been getting somewhat "stiff" in its functionality. As the nib came out, the door acted like it wanted to hang up on the back edge of the nib, and you sort of had to double clutch it to get it to fully extend. This was not ideal, and I was worried something was wrong. Now, if you've had or looked at a Dialog 3, you know these things are notoriously well built - which is to say, they're solid, and they aren't easy to dig into. In fact, I have yet to find a way to take apart the front barrel that I'm confident wouldn't destroy something in the process (if anyone's done this, please let me know!). So, diagnosing the sticky door was proving a big challenge. It turns out, however, that the fix for this is very simple. I'll try to get pictures later, but I need to hunt down a good macro lens due to what needs to be shown. Take off the rear barrel Take out the nib assembly (Optional) Run the front barrel through an ultrasonic cleaner, or soak in a little ammonia water overnight if you think there's any dried/gummed up ink in it. Honestly, I've never known this nib assembly to leak though. Put the rear barrel back on (dry the front assembly thoroughly if you cleaned it in step 3). Twist it to open the trapdoor on the front. With a Q-tip, take a very tiny bit of silicone grease, and rub it around the pivot gear point on the inside of the door. This is the part that really needs a picture, but I don't have one yet. Basically, if you shine a light in the front while working the door, you'll see the points where it pivots, and on one side where the barrel engages a gear that opens and closes it. This is the part that needs the help. You don't need to go crazy. I just lightly drew the Q-tip across the surface of the grease and rubbed it around. Put everything back together. Test the mechanism.For me, this made a night and day difference immediately, and saved me sending it in to Lamy to look at.
  11. As of today, I am now a proud owner of a shiny, new Lamy Dialog 3 in Palladium with a broad nib. As it is somewhat debated on whether this pen is really worth the price tag or not, I figured a first impressions review was in order. Initial Impression, Taking the pen out for the first time... The packaging for the pen was really quite simple - a white, cardboard sleeve over a simple two-piece box. However, once you slide off the sleeve and open the box, you're greeted with a cartridge, and papers, which for me, masked the actual pen case. Removing the peripherals such as a stamped warranty card from Bromfield Pen Show (no affiliation, but really great folks there), reveals the simple, understated pen case. My first thoughts really were, ooh, can I put glasses in this case? Sadly, no, as it's a bit too thin. ...Of course, now comes the pen itself. The Pen... Upon taking it out of the case, the first thing I thought was heavy. Oof! 35 grams? This thing weighs a boatload in the hand, when you're not using it at least. However, once I settled into my normal writing position, I immediately thought to myself, 'wait, where did the weight go?!' The reason for this is the balance - the D3 is definitely a pen that balances towards the front, moreso than the unposted Lamy 2000. The retractable mechanism, I find is slightly...Rough, but to a point it makes you feel like you're operating something mechanical, not electrical. It's very reminiscent of...Oh, say, a well maintained bike, for me, at least. There's always some slight friction to it, but, if maintained and made well, you always get a sense of quality and reliability each time you use it. It's the same here, a rough, mechanical charm to it. And yes, it has an o-ring on the back barrel, which I supposed is to help with sealing issues. Not that I've run into any. While some people might find it an ugly pen, I personally found it quite refreshing to look at in the face of all of my vintage examples - it stands for something new, modern, and elegant without being obtrusive about it. And I haven't even gotten to the nib yet. The Nib The nib is Lamy's 'standard' 14k nib that you'll find on all models starting from the Studio Palladium and up, with exception to the Lamy 2000 and many vintage Lamys. That said however, mine, a 14k broad, is a soft, springy beast that writes a lovely wet line. No tuning or smoothing was needed out of the box. Of course, it's now inked up, writing well with some DC Supershow Blue. Of which I'm running low on, but that's besides the point. If you're wondering about dry-out at this point...Well, I'll have to get back to you on that. I did just get this pen, after all. Filling Simple. A very well hidden cartridge/converter system, proprietary to Lamy. That said, it does seem a little limited, so, I'm tempted to try to find a vintage Parker converter to try to cram that in, considering their slightly increased capacity and compatibility. Parker and Lamy converters can be used both ways, in my experience. That said, the converter does exhibit some slight resistance to turning, but not much. I may recoat the piston with some 100% pure silicone grease again, at some point. Cost Overall, the pen cost me a grand total of $335 after tax. While yes, I'm aware that online, it can be had for much less, I wanted to support my local pen store and also have a place where I could easily get service, if needed. For the price, I certainly feel that it was very worthwhile. The pen certain feels like it was fully worth the value, and writes like a pen of this price range should - smoothly and reliably. I'll be adding a writing sample later, but these are my first impressions of the one pen I've wanted for this year. Edit: Here's some more comparison photos, next to some well known pens. All torpedo tubes loaded, sir... Torpedoes armed! So much 14k gold...With two exceptions. And of course, a writing sample. Something tells me working retail and then trying to write in an exhausted state isn't the best idea, but...Oh well? Paper is standard Clairefontaine notebook paper. 90 grams/sq metre, lined paper. Transcript of small sample: As the demon sleeps, man turns on man His own blood and madness soon cover the earth From the depths of despair awaken the Razgriz Its raven wings ablaze in majestic light -the Legend of Razgriz, from a certain fairy tale.

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