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  1. The Lamy Safari is arguably the most significant fountain pen currently in production. Its popularity is immense, and if you go to any thread even remotely about beginner pens you’ll see its name, or at least the name of its twin the Vista or older brothers the Al-Star or LX. Although it now has its rivals, the Pilot Metropolitan and, to a lesser extent, the TWSBI Eco, the Safari will always hold a special place in the fountain pen world, and was the first fountain pen for countless new enthusiasts. However, this popularity doesn’t bring only good effects. Like any popular pen, or popular item for that matter, the Safari has countless knockoffs. The most prevalent, other than straight-up counterfeit Safaris, are the Hero 359 and the Jinhao 599. There is a new pen emerging, however, and it is a closer replica to the Safari than ever before. The Yiren 566 is a near clone of the Safari in size, mass, and even nib and feed size and shape. (The nib on the 566 cannot be removed though, so sadly no nib swapping can occur). It even takes Lamy (and Parker) cartridges. So, here is a brief comparison of the Safari with this new knockoff and one of the older and most famous ones, the Jinhao 599. Lamy Safari: Pros: -It’s the original, the real thing. The pen comes with the reliability and ethos of an 80-some year-old German pen brand. -(For this specific pen) DARK LILAC!!! The best Safari Color in history, in my opinion, looks even better with its black clip and nib. -Everything feels a little bit smoother, and more refined, from the screwing in of the section to the polish on the nib. -Easy nib swapping with other Lamy Pens. Cons: -Money. The Safari costs $25 to the other pens’ $1-$2. -No convertor without added cost. Yiren 566 (The Newbie): Pros: -Cheap. Only $2. -Takes Lamy and Parker Cartridges. -Comes with a converter. -Clear Section looks great. -Pen is relatively attractive. (It’s no Dark Lilac, but I kind of like the “When a Pilot Kakuno and a Lamy Safari love each other very very much” vibe it has going. Neutral: Every dimension is an exact copy of the Safari. It is as close to the definition of a “clone” in terms of pen knockoffs as is possible. Cons: -No Nib Swapping. -Price goes up if you want shipping to take less than a month and a half. -Quality control/finish issues. The steel in the nib has some surface level scratches, the body has a tiny dent. The screwing out of the section feels friction-y and rough. Jinhao 599: Pros: -Cheapest of the three, only costs a dollar. -Takes a number five nib, meaning you can easily outfit the pen with a high-quality JOWO nib if you so desire. -Takes international cartridges. -Comes with a converter. -Jinhao has a little bit more brand ethos than Yiren, they generally don’t have too many quality control issues. Neutral: -Enough has changed that it feels like its own pen. It is obviously a Safari clone, but the completely different nib style, cartridge format, and slightly different weight gives it its own distinct feel. Cons: -The section screwing into the barrel is prone to cracking, and feels weaker than the other two. -Feels like cheaper plastic. -Very long shipping time. -Short international cartridges only make it halfway down the window. They sacrificed functionality for looking more like the original Safari. If you want my opinion on which one to buy, I'd honestly say all three. Why? The Safari, in my opinion, is a must-have pen. The knockoffs are great, great values for their price, but the Safari is just better. So, if you're looking to get a new Safari, get a Safari. The knockoffs together are cheaper than a Lamy convertor, so it wouldn't be the end of the world if you hated them. In conclusion, you should definitely try the knockoffs, but don't try to substitute them for the real thing.
  2. hey all, i've seen a lot about replacing the nib in a jinhao 450 or 750 with a zebra G nib to get a flexy fountain pen, and I was wondering if the same would be possible a 599, because I'd really like a demonstrator with a flex nib. thanks for any advice!
  3. Hello can anybody give me some information on the Jinhao 599. I know that it is a knock off very similar to The Lamy. But a lot of people think its better than the aforementioned brand. How many colours does it have. And what size nibs?
  4. fitz123

    Jinhao 599

    Im thinking of getting a Jinhao 599 with a clear body, but want to have a fine nib in it. Does this pen take a #6 nib?
  5. ParkersandPilots

    Transparent Blue Jinhao 599

    Pen: Jinhao 599 Cost: $3 Appearance & Design (10/10): The pen looks better than a Lamy. The blue transparent plastic doesn’t look cheap and the clip looks better as well. The Lamy clips reminds me of a paperclip, this clip is definitely an improvement. The pen also has the transparent grip section which is cool and the dimensions are nice. All in all no complaints here. Construction & Quality (4/10): And here’s where it falls short of the Lamy… I got the pen and happily inked it, I set it down and picked it up a few minutes later to find there was a major leak in the pen and most of it had settled in the cap. So I sighed and dumped the ink out and reset the nib and feed. Re-inked it and found another issue. While holding the grip section I kept pushing down on the converter to seal it and it kept moving down, so I looked and the black sleeve that fits into the grip section that holds the nib and feed was two thirds out of the grip section and wouldn’t stay in. Whenever downward pressure was applied it would slide out. So I sighed and put some shellac on the sleeve popped it back in and have had no issues since. BUT it is important to note that the need in feed only go in at one place on the sleeve. So before I shellaced it I made sure it was at the correct angle relative to the grip section. This is important because it has to line up with the right side of the 3 sided grip if it doesn’t writing will be a real pain. Weight & Dimensions (9/10): This pen is a great in this category. It’s light and well balanced while posted. It’s a hair short of 5.5 inches when capped and just a little under 6.5 inches when posted. The pen weighs 15 g when it’s not inked. Overall the dimensions and light weight make it an ideal everyday pen. Nib & Performance (8/10): It’s got a Jinhao nib, nothing special. It writes smoothly and fairly wet for a fine. Once I worked the kinks out it is a great performer. I really enjoy using it. The 3 sided grip section does take some getting used to and may not be suitable to everyone but I like it. Filling System & Maintenance (10/10): Unlike the Lamy it can take international converters and cartridges. No complaints. Cost & Value (10/10): I got this for $3, which is not too far off from what it usually goes for. It’s a nice copy of a famous pen and a great value if you don’t mind tinkering with it a little bit to make it perform its best. Conclusion (51/60 -- 85%) For $3 I can’t really complain. It’s a really nice pen. I love the color, the standard shaped nib, the improved clip and the fact it can take international cartridges. It’s a Lamy, de-individualized, a pen that took some unique and made it universal. Which is pretty much what Jinhao does… But they did a good job with this one and despite its issues it’s a pen I would buy again if I lost it.
  6. Believe it or not, I scored a Jinhao 599 on eBay for less than $2.00 with shipping and handling from China! I have reviewed this pen before and gave it high marks for the price. Now, it is an even better value.... More here: http://thefrugalfountainpen.blogspot.com/2015/02/jinhao-599-for-less-than-2.html
  7. I saw the new Jinhao 599 on eBay several weeks ago for less than $4.00 (!) and decided to pick one up. It certainly looks like an "homage" to a popular German pen whose name begins with an "L".... More here: http://thefrugalfountainpen.blogspot.com/2014/06/jinhao-599-fountain-pen.html https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RY2pvweV6dc

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