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  1. If you are somewhat obsessive, like me, then before you commit to a purchase over a particular threshold, you will conduct extensive research. So, before I completed the transaction for a Conid Minimalistica, I read every thread that included the term here, and on FPG and /r/fountainpens. The Conid brand is one that gets a lot of love from these communities, so there was quite a lot of material to wade through, and—specifically for the Minimalistica—not all of the comments were positive. In general, the negative perceptions around the pen were focussed on four areas: The Cap. The use of an O-ring as a capping mechanism drew most negative comments. These were usually along the lines of complaints about the difficulty of removing the cap because of the tightness of the seal. Conid relatively recently (early 2019) changed from a green to a black O-ring, so this may be a contributing factor, but I find the “push and twist” movement to cap the pen excellent. It takes very little effort, and less than a quarter turn of the cap to securely and safely cap the pen. Additionally, it feels better than many push to cap systems that rely on a raised ring, or the L2K's ears, to secure the cap as these systems require different levels of force, which can mean a slightly uncontrolled uncapping action. Similarly, some people complain about the slight rocking of the cap when either closed or posted as the lip of the cap can hinge when the O-ring flexes. Again, I have played with this to reproduce the effect and I can't say that it is significant enough to bother me in either case. One downside of the O-ring in the cap is that when you do post, the O-ring sits over the delrin turning nob. So, if you twist the cap anticlockwise to unpost, it will start to unlock the bulkfiller. This can be annoying, so on the rare occassions that I do post, I make a point of turning the cap the other way to free it from the barrel. The Clip. A number of people complained about the sharpness of the edges of the titanium clip. This is a legitimate complaint. The edges should be chamfered as, the way they are, they are unpleasantly sharp. And, for the majority of the time that I am using the pen unposted, I hold the cap in my left hand and unconsciously fondle it. The two corners at the top edge of the clip are especially unforgiving. The acrylic grip. An admittedly smaller number of complaints have focussed on the slipperiness of the acrylic "section". I am quite sensitive to this and refuse to buy any pens with metal sections for this reason. However, I find that the grip on the acrylic is wonderful. I have had no issues with grip, even over protracted sessions. Finally, a couple of issues that apply to Conid pens, not just the Mini. The second reservoir. Conid's nib collars ship with a steel pin protruding from the rear that apparently is intended to improve the flow between the primary and secondary reservoir. I immediately swapped out the Conid nib assembly for a Flexible Nib Factory one that holds my Sailor nib. Needless to say, this collar does not have the steel pin. Despite this, I have found no issues with ink not freely transferring between the two reservoirs while writing. This may be because of the ink (Aurora Blue), but I have found the design to work exceptionally well. Typically, I start the day by filling the second reservoir and then resealing it before writing. For longer sessions, I'll open it up a couple of millimeters and over the two to three hours that I am writing, I have experienced no starvation, or other irregularities. Communication. Lots of people find that once you pay for the pen, Conid essentially goes dark until your pen is about to ship. This was my experience. When I was finalising the details (custom grind, clip engraving and additional parts), Jonas was terrific to deal with. After that, you get the automated emails and that is it. Personally, as someone who has been in the queue for a custom pen for close to eighteen months, this does not bother me. The team is small (around 6) and I would expect them to be focussed on making the sale and getting the pens out the door, not handholding anxious customers. Others obviously disagree, and argue that for the cost, much better customer service is called for. Francis has confirmed they are looking to expand the team, so perhaps there will be more communications during the build process. In any event, no-one has ever not received their pen, and as far as I am concerned, the wait is well worth it. Overall, the Minimalistica is a terrific pen. While it is expensive, it is an exquisitely engineered writing instrument and, unlike a lot of comparably priced pens, it will work perfectly out of the box. After having read a plethora of views about it prior to it arriving, I find that it has actually surpassed my expectations, and it is not often that you can say that about a pen. Or much in life, really.
  2. First off, here are some photos: Nib: http://imgur.com/2vPuwy4Writing Sample: http://imgur.com/t7WFQ4XComparison with Sailor B: http://imgur.com/DW2lT1XHello all, I hope you are well during these strange times. Today I have a short review of my impressions of Sailor’s contemporary Naginata Togi Medium nib. I have been using it for the past month or so as a daily writer. Now, Sailor Naginata Togi nibs and I have a long relationship built upon longing and reluctance. I’ve always wanted one, since getting the chance to try one years ago. They write beautifully, but the prices have been getting a little wild over the last few years. Recently I sold off most of the pens I hadn’t been using, trimming my collection down to a pair of Conid AVDA Phis and an old 146 that I use as a ‘can-I-try-your-pen?’ pen. With the Conids, I have a few Sailor nibs I rotate through, and this NM is the most recent addition to their ranks. Now, I got the chance to try one of the modern Naginata Togi nibs while living in Barcelona, but I waited until I returned home to Canada to purchase one as the price was ever so slightly better and I had the opportunity to purchase it from Wonderpens—best stationery shop in Canada folks, full stop. The modern rendition of the grind is spectacular, and a true equal to the originals I‘ve had the pleasure to use. They write wet, really wet, and I would not have the patience to use one in a Sailor body with their tiny converter, so a Conid was a must for me. The feed does a spectacular job at keeping up, aided I am sure by the sheer volume of ink in the Minimalistica’s reservoirs. The nib performs as advertised, though I should note that the line variation has no practical use in regular western cursive scripts. Personally, I use a higher writing angle to make corrections or small notations. The feel of this nib is unlike any other Sailor nib. The sweet spot is massive, the tunes have some play to them affording some pressure-based variation, and the feedback is unique among Sailors. If a Sailor Fine is a sharp HB pencil lead, and a Sailor Broad is a fairly sharp H or F pencil lead, then the Naginata Togi Medium is a well used B or 2B pencil lead. It sings across the paper without ever feeling scratchy. Run the flat of your finger nail across a teak tabletop, that’s what it feels like. Sonorous, soulful, and spirited, this is a generation nib. I don’t truly know what else I can say, about the nib or it’s performance. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask away.
  3. Hello everyone, hope your weeks are off to a fine start. I come to you today with a very specific question: is my Montblanc 146 nib scraping its shoulders on the inside of my Conid Minimalistica’s cap? I usually use my Minimalisticas with Sailor nibs, but I have a lovely 146 nib, which I’ve had ground to a CSI, that I occasionally swap in. My question springs from the slightest scraping sensation I can feel when capping the pen fitted with the aforementioned nib. Now, both of my Conid’s are the all Delrin AVDA Phi versions, so I am unable to actually see if the nib and the inner cap are indeed making contact. I would hate to damage such a fine nib, so I am hoping someone out there with a clear capped Minimalistica is using a 146 nib and could answer my question. Thank you in advance. All the best to you and yours, Eli
  4. I’ve been thinking about Conid’s current offerings a lot, recently. Speculating about where the brand will go in the coming months and years. What do you want to see them focus on next, which direction do you think the brand will take? Personally, I hope they’re able to find the time to innovate, once they have their backlog under control and their process ironed out. I’m a huge fan of the Minimalistica, and would order one made in a nice celluloid or attractive resin in a heartbeat (though a friction-fit cap may not jive well with ‘fancier’ materials). Also an ink window on the Delrin model, even for a higher price, would be an instant buy. I’d also welcome any new pen models, especially some more in the no.6 nib range. I’d love to hear any thoughts and opinions you might have, below. I know Conid’s processes and practices can be a divisive topic for some, but let’s try to keep our gaze on the future. Cheers!
  5. Hello all, this will be my first review here — my first post, for that matter — so do tell me if I need to make any changes to its format. the pen I am reviewing today is the Conid Minimalistica AVDA Phi Special edition. If that mouthful wasn’t enough, my specific configuration is: M BCB BB SL. Which essentially means it’s all Delrin. What’s unique about this special edition is the cigar shape of the pen, rounded finals as opposed to the usual flattop, and the engraved clip. I had been sweating over which Conid to order for a while, and deciding on this one was a slow process. I initially wanted a king size in all Delrin (not a huge fan of ebonite) but I found the pen to be too heavy once I got one in-hand. The section of the Regular, and the two exposed o-rings at its rear left me ergonomically and aesthetically turned-off, so it was out too. The slimline was too small and had a similar concave section to the Regular, which I didn’t enjoy. I have yet to try a giraffe... I had two doubts about the Minimalistica initially: I don’t like how it looks with flat finals, and I was worried about the friction fit cap. Once I got one in-hand, and realized that you could get one with rounded finals, these concerns vanished. The feel of the uninterrupted rather girthy section of the pen was perfect in my hand. The weight and balance ideal. I ordered one immediately. I went without a nib, as I almost exclusively use Sailor H-M and H-B nibs for my long writing sessions. I wanted to really put this pen to work. I placed the order in late June, had a Sailor nib ready to go in an FNF housing two weeks later, and then I waited. The pen arrived in October. By this time I had moved to Barcelona for work and the shipping took one day. I opened the package, greased the o-rings on the piston, threaded in my nib of choice and inked my new Minimalistica with Tsuki-yo. Then I got to writing. I write a good deal, try to get in two hours most weekdays and will do a longer session on Sundays. This pen is exactly what I hoped it would be. After a long session I have zero pain or fatigue in my hand or wrist. I don’t have to deal with filling in the middle of a session — ever — and the material feels so nice in my hands. I have used six different nibs in this pen: Sailor H-B, H-M, H-F, H-F CSI (Kirk Speer), H-M CSI (Kirk again), and finally a Montblanc 146 Broad CSI (you guessed it, Kirk Speer). Flexible Nib Factory truly has made my life better. Without access to these nibs, I’d undoubtedly be less happy with the pen. The nibs definitely write wetter than they do in a Sailor body, but not to an extreme degree. The Montblanc writes fine, like you’d expect, nothing incredible but the grind on it makes it fun to use once in a while. I have used this pen everyday since its arrival, it’s been inked with Tsuki-yo, Fuyu-syogun, and Take-sumi. I could not be happier with its performance; I ordered another on November Second. I will attach some photos of the pen below. Please feel free to ask any questions. Cheers!
  6. Table of Contents Motivation Introduction What came with the pen Styling Pen Material / Fitting Measurements Ergonomics Filling System Capping System Nib(s) Cost Communication Conclusion / TL:DR Motivation I've wanted, for a while, to try my hand on writing a longer work for a fountain pen. I originally planned to write a review rather than an overview for the Conid. Instead, I ended up writing a bulk of this on a lazy Sunday morning so I've decided to leave the review for later down the line. I did not take any care in editing this so please excuse any grammatical errors. Introduction My personal allure to the Conid pens lies in the filling system and ergonomics. The Conid model that I found most fitting to my preference was the Minimalistica. My main fascination with the pen was the uninterrupted physique of the pen body. No threads on the body: count me in! At that point in time, the filling system was a nice additional to the pen that I found to be just interesting. I took a leap of faith buying the Conid pen. I didn't have any idea what the pen was going to be like. After my extended experience with the Minimalistica, I found the pen to be quite worthwhile. What came with the pen -spare o-rings -business cards -box (very cool style) -writing sample slip -instructional slip for filling the pen -cleaning cloth -tooling (ordered) There isn't any instruction of any sort with the use of the spare o-rings. I can tell that one goes on the cap and another goes on the rod. Not sure on the third middle-sized one; I did look over the tutorials on Conid's site but I did not see any use for it. Styling The pen comes with a stealth pen styling: black with titanium trim. I like that the pen does not warrant any unwanted attention - very suitable for a daily workhorse. I don't connect with the pen personally... It is a pen that says: time to get to work! There is a beauty in that; I don't get distracted by the beauty of the pen. Conid allows for some deviation from their slotted style. I asked for a few changes: cigar-shaped body, initials on the clip, and removal of the cap finial. I was able to secure my suggestions barring the cigar-shaped body. I wondered if it was because the cigar-shaped Minimalistica was only made for their special edition - I never did ask. The laser-engraved initials came as complementary, rather than at an additional cost. Admittedly, I later decided to cancel adding my initials to the clip. It came as a surprise that the pen came with my initials on it. It didn't really matter to me, but it leaves communication on the mind for possible future purchases with Conid. Pen Material / Fitting To my untrained knowledge, I can't speak much technical opinions on the pen. I can only go by how it feels and how it has aged in the time I have had the pen. The material that I chose for the pen is the Delrin model. Originally I found the material to feel a bit slippery compared to the Sailor plastic I was used to. Over time I found no real issue with gripping the pen. I'm not certain if it is psychological to me or physical to the pen, but I did find the grip to be less slippery over time. The pen feels substantial. There is a denseness to the pen that gives the impression of a very solid pen. There are only a few minor aesthetic flaws that came with the shipped pen. My own weight measurements Cap - 8.30 grams ~ Body - 18.83 grams ~ Uncapped inked (regular method, 1 fill) - 20.70 grams ~ Uncapped inked (Visconti Inkwell, 1 fill) - 21.13 grams ~ Conid's measurements Uncapped - 126 mm Capped - 137 mm Posted - 160 mm fountainbel's grip measurements "2- Minimalistica : conical shaped grip medium diameter 11.2mm , front diameter 10.3mm diameter12.5mm at 20mm from front of section." Ergonomics The main ergonomic appeal to me is the lack of threads on the body. Since the pen cap is done with an o-ring, there are no threads or clutch on the pen body. That leads me to my second point. The pen is excellent in the hand uncapped. The uncapped length, weight, and balance of the pen works for my hand quite well. The pen feels solid in the hand: it just feels right like a nice fitted glove. To give a comparison, for a pen of a similar length of the Minimalistica, perhaps a tiny bit shorter, I would usually prefer to post the pen. A pen like a Montblanc 146 or a Sailor 1911. I think, for one, the Conid is a bit longer as well as a bit more back heavy which is why I prefer the ergonomics of the Minimalistica rather than a similar pen shape. I have really never used the pen posted, so I have not much comments. The posting does occur on the o-ring of the cap on the knob of the body. Perhaps a deeper posting on the body would be more ideal. The unposted version is more than enough for me however! The gripping section of the pen, if you can call it that, is what I find ideal: not too thick and not too slim. Filling System I'm not going to go into too much technical detail since other reviews list the details much better than I could. I will say that the filling system is easy to use: easy to fill, easy to clean, and easy to use when you want to refill the reservoir. Just a complete filling system I feel. I don't have any real issue with refilling the reservoir or opening the seal for longer writing sessions. It is a process that comes as a ritual to the pen. For longer writing, the knob is unscrewed and pulled out some length. There is some play with the rod when the knob is unscrewed and extended. This is noticeable at times during writing. Really not noticeable to me, but could be for hard-handed writers perhaps. It's more or less just the tapping motion where you notice the play. The sidestrokes and such: you don't notice the play at all. There is no ink-window with this delrin model. You can hear the ink sploshing inside the body, and can somewhat tell when the ink is running low. This does take some getting used to. I purchased the companion tooling for disassembly. I've only taken apart the pen once out of curiosity. Personally, I would prefer a longer knob rather than the short stubby one the pen current has. For refilling with the Visconti Inkwell, I would have to empty the pen out without creating the seal. If you try to empty with the seal entact, a lot of pressure builds up inside the inkwell. As you may guess, some ink spews out. Filling the pen is easy enough but I'd have to turn the knob pretty quick after I pull the knob all the way down. The knob wants to move up for whatever reason after I fill the pen. A fuller fill is easier on the Visconti Inkwell, but I'd imagine a 2-fill for the Conid would create the same result. Although it is more troublesome if you have the delrin model instead of the transparent. Capping System The pen caps on with an o-ring secured inside the pen cap. I've found no real issue with the o-ring system. Even if the seal becomes too loose, one can replace the o-ring easily. The o-ring leaves a faint marking - which isn't deep, just a tattoo'ing - on the body of the pen. There is some play to the cap with the o-ring capping system. This isn't not a real issue because the pen is very securely attached. There is a machined inner cap inside the pen. I have not encountered any drying out of the nib thus far. There is a hole on the cap that does what it needs to do. It is stealthily hidden under the clip. The clip works I suppose? Personally, I just bought the clip version of the pen just so that cap wouldn't roll around. I've never used any pen clip for actually clipping. Nib(s) Originally I bought the pen to fit my Sailor nibs on the pen. I later find that Sailor nibs don't fit perfectly on the Bock feed - I encountered a saturated feed when refilling the seconday reservoir. I relucantly went back to the steel medium nib that I bought with the pen originally. I later did find that the feed had a slight chip that may have caused the saturated feed. I have moved to a standard Bock feed in the meantime - of which I haven't encountered any saturated feed. The steel medium nib is a dry writer. It writes smoothly, and without much feedback. I don't use this steel nib anymore: I now favor the Titanium Bock nib. I prefer a nib that is on the wet end and writes with more feedback. One point to note about the nib unit is that they are modified by Conid. The plastic bit that is usually there for the converter is drilled off; There is also a metal tube attached to the feed as well. Another point is that it is a bit confusing to buying additional nibs after buying the pen. You go through the same process as buying the pen but move the quantity of the pen to 0. I think that there should be a separate tab on the Conid website for accessories such as tooling, nibs, and maybe even the Conid pen stand that comes with the special editions. The Bock Titanium nib I have on the pen current wasn't purchased from Conid, so I don't think it is much to talk about. I do the enjoy the nib a lot more after I got it adjusted by Mark Bacas. I do not think about attempting to get a Sailor nib on the Conid anymore, the adjusted Titanium nib is a pure joy to write with. Cost The Minimalistica isn't cheap. It is a serious investment in a pen that I've made only a few times. But this was the only time where my satisfaction was at its highest. No real complaints for the pen that weren't fixed - just the nib problem initially. Where does the cost come from? From my perspective and reading of the web, the materials are all excellent and the pen is made with a tight tolerance. I don't really understand the second point as much, but I'll take the many people who mentioned it to be right. The filling system is another part of it of course. What pens uses the Bulkfiller? Just the Conid models. The filling system is great to use from a user perspective. The single Steel nib that I bought initially was disappointing. There are plenty of options for attaching vintage nibs or other Bock nibs. So there is no real issue with having a good writing experience. Communication Communication is a good point to bring up. I don't think Conid's communication is great. My impression is that it is all managed by Werner - who I believe is plenty busy with other work. Really, communication is the greatest weakpoint of this pen. If you order the pen and don't want to change your order later on, the communication is just fine - just slow. But if you want to change your order, and add more bells and whistles to the pen, that is where I would suggest thinking it over carefully before submitting your order. Conclusion / TL:DR The Minimalistica is a solid overall package of a pen.
  7. Hi guys, I have been intrigued lately by Conid fp. I am considering buying it, but I am not sure if I should get the Regular, or Minimalist. They both take 2.5ml of ink inside which is great for what I do (use a lot of ink redlining architectural drawings). They both look cool. Minimalist however costs roughly $100 less than Regular. Have you had any experience with them, and do you think it is worth paying more for Regular? Thank you.
  8. I'm glad to announce the first interview for 123stylo.com, featuring a great friend, who also is a fountain pen collector and an architect M. Alain Vanderauwera. In this very video, he talks about how he worked with Conid to create a Limited Edition , you probably don't know about. (because the Minimalistica AvdA it's really really limited!) To learn more about him and his amazing collection (with english subt.), please follow this link! (published on 123stylo's blog)http://123stylo.com/blog/ Cheers!For 123stylo.comWilliam (here's a picture of this amazing guy!)
  9. stephanos

    Conid Minimalistica

    This is a review of CONID’s Minimalistica, which I haven’t seen reviewed on FPN yet. This is a two-part review. The first part is a traditional FP review, following the criteria commonly used on FPN. The second is a bit of an experiment; to try to use some intellectual tools to express aesthetically why I really, really like CONID’s Minimalistica. The idea behind this comes from Jonathon Deans. I’ll put more details about his very interesting contribution to the FP community in a comment (or see his post directly). The result is a longer-than-usual review. I hope you find it useful anyway. Please leave feedback on the aesthetic review. --- TRADITIONAL (technical) REVIEW --- Design: 9/10 This is an extremely well-designed pen. One might even call it a pen that has been designed with an obsessive eye for detail. There are plenty of entries elsewhere on FPN that talk about the technical details, so I won’t try to repeat them here; suffice it to say that there has been great care taken with every aspect of this pen; from the filling system, to the rubber-ring-secured snap-cap (which you have to twist slightly when capping and uncapping), to the excellently-designed clip. I docked a point because there is a slight wobble in the cap when the pen is capped. To be clear, it sits very securely, but if you press the side of the bottom of the cap, the rubber ring securing the cap to the body of the pen ensures that there is a small gap between the cap and barrel that is a tiny bit wider than a sheet of paper, and which allows a bit of play. Photo: capped pen Photo: posted pen Appearance: 8/10 Rather bland in online photos, this is a lovely pen in ‘person’ (more in the aesthetic review part, below). I went for the demonstrator barrel, which I found more interesting. Note that even when it is full of ink, the Minimalistica will have a big transparenct chunk just below the feed. The demo version isn’t for everyone, but there is also an opaque version. For some reason, the solid (dark, opaque) body reminded me of a Lamy 2000 in looks/shape. The one thing I don’t like is a little discoloured ring inside the barrel close to where the seal engages. It looks to have been caused by a circular rough spot in the barrel that attracts ink. I have used the same ink each time I’ve filled the pen – Akkerman’s Royal Blue, which came with the pen – so I don’t know what it would look like after several colours had cycled through. I have rather strictly docked two points for this; the pen is otherwise perfect in my eyes. Special mention to the packaging. I don’t usually care for packaging, and I only saw the box after I had bought the pen, but it’s an unusually well-designed box, with all aspects well thought-out. And honourable mention to user-serviceability. I got a tool-set in the box. With the instructions, I should be able to take the pen apart entirely to clean and/or otherwise service it. Photo: Finial Photo: Turning knob Photo: End, unscrewed Filling System: 10/10 If you’ve read this far, you’re almost certainly aware that CONID’s filling system is new and innovative, and allows for a barrel full of ink. It is an excellent design and very easy to use. Full marks here. Photo: Mid-section, seal open Photo: Mid-section, seal closed Nib performance: 10/10 I bought this pen at the London pen show in early October 2015 and it has been in daily use since then. It is a joy to use. The Medium titanium nib was modified to a stub while I waited and it was set to write as I specified. So it is inevitable, really, that I give the nib a 10/10 performance. However, the CONID stand had loads of inked (not dipped) pens to try out, and they all wrote beautifully. In fact, my inspiration for the stub on my pen came from the stub on one of the demo pens, which was love at first touch to the paper. Based on my sample of pens tested, giving a 10/10 for my specific nib’s performance isn’t unfairly positive. If you were feeling sceptical, you could mentally adjust this score down to a 9. Photo: Nib Writing experience: 9/10 This pen writes beautifully – smooth and about a 7/10 wetness. The feed easily keeps up, even with fast writing, and the dimensions are perfect for me. I had expected to prefer one of the other pens, but after at least 15 minutes of trying out different models, I kept coming back to the Minimalistica. I liked its looks very much, but I liked other models also: the deciding factor was that this model fitted my hand perfectly and posts securely (I’m an habitual poster, though it’s large enough to use unposted). My only niggle is that – like a power-filler – you have to unscrew the back after a while as the closed reserve starts to run dry. Once you’ve opened up the seal, the wetness goes up to about 8/10 for a short while. I dock a point for this. Writes out of the box: not applicable Many modern fountain pens bought new have problems right out of the box. I therefore think it generally appropriate to give a mark of 5/5 if it is trouble-free from the start, to reflect the fact that a pen is principally a writing instrument (0/5 if this criterion isn’t met; rendering an overall mark of 55). My Minimalistica did write beautifully, trouble-free from the start, and has continued to do so. But, as I bought it at a show and it was modified for me on the spot, I don’t think it is fair to rate this aspect. If you think that’s unfair, mentally add 5 to both the overall score and the theoretical maximum. Overall view: 46/50 Technically close to perfect, this pen is an enormous pleasure to write with and interesting to look at. It is easily my favourite acquisition of the year, and has set a new benchmark for writing pleasure. This pen is not cheap, but to me it nonetheless represents excellent value. --- AESTHETIC REVIEW --- Jonathon Deans suggests one set of (normative) criteria for evaluating aesthetic experience and another set of factors to address sources of aesthetic appreciation. Rather than trying anything fancy here, I’ll just go through them. Evaluating the aesthetic experience Intensity (the wow! factor): The Minimalistica has a pretty good ability to grab and hold my attention in the way it looks (visual) and feels (physical). Combine that with a whizz-bang experience in writing (performative intensity) that really grabs my emotional attention, and the overall experience is definitely intense. Others might prefer the solid, opaque version, but I find the demonstrator body much more interesting. This is not least because I like seeing the guts of this new filling system. Complexity of the experience: did I experience this pen as imaginative, surprising, interesting? Yes. I was surprised by how pleasing it was to hold and look at – wasn’t expecting that. Nor was I expecting it to feel as pleasant as it did in the hand: beautifully smooth, not slippery, not cold. And I experience it as imaginative and interesting – both in the way it was put together and in the particular filling mechanism. This is a deceptively simple pen – looks pretty basic at first glance, but repays greater attention. Maybe this is why I can see parallels with the Lamy 2000: both have a kind of radical simplicity. Unity: did I experience the Minimalistica as coherent and complete? Most certainly. Well thought-through, a harmonious, well-balanced blend of its parts, and with nothing missing. The pen is perfect as is. I think it is also possible to get this model without a clip, but to my taste, not having a clip would make me feel the pen were incomplete. Sources of aesthetic appreciation Materials: colours, shapes, physical material. Not much here to get too excited about. The shape is aesthetically pleasing, suits me very well. But it’s designed in sober colours and in a decent plastic. I really like the smoothness of the materials, and the colour of the nib compared with the body of the pen. The bands at the pen’s extremities have nice detail, but I think the materials are more of a hygiene factor. Form: The relationship of each element to the whole. Wonderful. I can sit and look at this pen for minutes at a time, admiring the perfection of the ratio of the parts, with the form extremely well-suited to the particular function and filling system. Expression: what if anything is it that I associate with this particular pen, and what sort of emotions does it evoke? There is little in the colours to trigger associations for me. The sleek design makes me think of something low-key and highly efficient. There is plenty of space for more extravagant, exuberant designs too, but the idea of being able to get maximum effect for the minimum fuss makes me happy. Finally, I’m not sure whether the circumstances of acquisition should count under expression or whether this should be a separate category. Either way, a pen’s provenance surely conjures associations. Just think of an heirloom pen. In this case, my particular pen has an association with my positive experience of the London pen show, which I enjoyed. So, that was a long review of the CONID Minimalistica, a very interesting pen. It was also a first attempt to exlpicitly discuss the aesthetics and start developing aesthetic literacy. I hope you found it useful. Please see my comment, below, which provides more detail on the impetus for this initiative.
  10. With the recent rave reviews of the Conid Bulkfiller, I've decided to join in the fray. So which one should I start with, the Regular size or Minimalistica? It seems to me that the sizes and feel are very similar. I currently use all sizes of pens with all types of nibs...but prefer the M800 and 146, for size. It also seems that the choice comes down to a slip cap vs. screw on...and flat black vs. demonstrator. On either pen I'd begin with a titanium medium, and just see where that might take me. I'd appreciate any advice or thoughts. D

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