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Found 16 results

  1. Introduction I had always wanted a Bamboo/Sugarcane shaped pen and had stocked up on materials that represent the colour of green and ripened sugarcane material. When fellow FPNer Sanjay Ramaswamy (@Sanjay13leo) got to know of my desire, he proactively reached out to Mr.Kandan of Ranga Pens to commission two pens – one for each of us. I had never dealt with Mr. Kandan before while Sanjay already had their standard bamboo pen. A big thank you to him for having made this pen possible. Design The design of the pen is supposed to mimic a small section of the sugarcane stem. Sugarcane belongs to
  2. Introduction I recently had an opportunity to act as an enabler by helping a colleague and friend of mine acquire a special custom fountain pen. This particular gentlemen has a very fine collection of writing equipments including models from almost all premier brands and certainly a few Parkers. But his heart was set on acquiring a classic all ebonite Duofold in glorious orange hues but with a contemporary filling system. Since such a chimera doesn't exist in the real world, we set about creating a pen that looks and behaves like a modern Duofold Centennial but with an orange ebonite cap and
  3. Prologue Long before the likes of Romilo and Scriptorium reintroduced and popularized the concept of hand-crafted gold nibs customized to individual tastes & needs, there has been a set of small dedicated Indian handmade pen-makers who have been diligently doing the same out of there small workshops located mostly around South India. Today I want to share pictures of a trio of such pens from my collection. All these pens are vintage, were bought by me as used pens and are made by artisans who are no longer with us or else are too old to be active themselves although the institutions the
  4. Prithwijit

    Asa I-Will Review

    Introduction After commissioning some customized designs via ASApens I decided to change track a bit and get a few of their standard offerings. Looking around, there seemed to be a few models that had got consistently good review in FPN. One of them was the I-Can design which has been reviewed favourably here, here and here. I quite liked the classical lines of the design and decided to order it. There is one concession I made for myself, which is to use the wild cheesecake acrylic blank from theturnersworkshop.co.uk instead of stock ebonite. Also, since I prefer to use CC instead of ED pen
  5. Introduction During the early phases of my renewed fascination for all things fountain pens there was one model that reigned supreme amongst my list for grail pens and that was the Sailor King of Pens. Everything about it seemed to be just about perfect – the torpedo shape, the ebonite material and the large sized fabulous Sailor nibs. It was just a matter of time before I got one for myself. Two sailor pens and their less than perfect nibs later, my enthusiasm for the KOP started to wane a bit. I had realized that the tip shape and design of the stock sailor nibs (Naginata Togi or Nagahara
  6. Introduction The cigar shape has been an all-time fountain pen classic. Whether it is the Sheaffer Balance of 1920s or modern Meisterstruck or KOP, the shape has an enduring appeal and is often the signature design for top of the line pens from their respective pen marques. The shape and form have morphed into being a hallmark of quality exemplified by such storied models such as MB 149, Sailor KOP, Namiki Emperor or even the platinum president line. Not all cigar shapes however are created equal and there are many variations within the broader design. Intrigued, I dug a bit deeper and this s
  7. Prithwijit

    Asa Halwa Review

    Introduction Halwa / Halva (Bengali: হালুয়া‎) is a famous and traditional sweet of India which is slightly gelatinous and made from grain flour, typically semolina. The primary ingredients are clarified butter, flour, and sugar. So why would anyone name a pen after a confectionary item? The story behind this is really funny. It starts with me acquiring my first set of acrylic pen blanks called “Seasons” and sending a photograph of them to Mr. Subramaniam of ASA pens. Image: Seasons acrylic pen blanks Imagine my shock when he replied that the picture reminded him of Halwa. At first I was
  8. Casein (from Latin caseus, "cheese") is a milk protein which we widely consume in various forms such as cheese and as a food additives. An interesting anecdote in the story of Caseins is that it was a popular ingredient for making some of the earliest plastics called Casein plastics. For a very brief period of time, casein was a popular material in fountain pen manufacturing. This was in early 1920's when it was the only plastic that could be coloured. With the advent of celluloid which was a superior type of plastic, casein quickly fell out of favour. Pens made of casein are quite rare and I
  9. Prithwijit

    Asa Sniper Review

    Introduction The sniper is a pen with very interesting history and one that has very close ties with FPN. The pen was launched as a group buy back in February 2015 by as a collaboration between ASApens and Vaibhav (@Mehandiratta) as just a concept without any drawing or prototype. Many enthusiastic FPNers rallied behind the concept of a hooded nib hand-made pen and the momentum was formed. We got to see the initial prototypes and the evolution of the design till the final shape took place and the pen was launched as a product. So in many ways this is a pen that has been conceived in, laboured
  10. Prithwijit

    Asa Namenlos Review

    Introduction The story of this pen begins ironically with the story of my perception of a completely different pen brand which happens to be Pelikan. For quite some time there was a lot of enthusiasm in the “Fountain Pen Pals India” WhatsApp/Telegram group with people espousing the greatness of the brand and how Pelikan pens were the next best thing to sliced bread. I have been known to have a healthy dose of skepticism against any form of brand adulation and for some reason I found it very difficult to accept a steel nib lightweight M200 as being a much better pen than a Sailor 1911 standard
  11. Prithwijit

    Asa Bheeshma Review

    Hi everyone, this is my first attempt at a fountain pen review and I have decided to review the ASA Bheeshma which is a custom design that ASA pens has made based on my request. Since this is my first effort, please go easy on the brickbats. Constructive criticisms however are always welcome. Introduction The story of Bheeshma has to start with the discussion one day that we were having in the “Fountain Pen Pals India” WhatsApp group when someone introduced me to a picture of a Scriptorium pen in Lava Explosion blank. I was stunned as to how amazingly pretty the material was and how beauti
  12. Introduction Recently my interest in all things fountain pen related has spawned a specific sub-genre - a fascination for experiencing nibs made of different materials such as gold, titanium, palladium, etc. Looking around, it seems that the Bock 250 triple system is the ideal platform for experiencing material differences since they seem to have the widest range of conceivable material options for this particular nib. It is thus hardly surprising that I have embarked on developing a collection of different Bock 250 nibs. To eradicate as many variables as possible, I am getting all of them in
  13. Prithwijit

    Asa Azaadi Review

    Introduction Often in life one learns to appreciate the value of something only after the object is long gone. In my case, something along the same lines happened for Conway Stewart pens. One fine evening in July of 2015 I chanced upon a store selling off the last few Conway Stewarts they had in stock and I was mesmerised by their beauty. One look at the price tag however quickly brought me back to my senses. Modern CS pens were never known to be on the value end of the price spectrum and the huge custom duties and other applicable taxes in India meant that they were well outside my grasp. I
  14. Introduction Why would anyone be mad enough to splurge $49 on a Hero 100 fountain pen, especially a Hero 100 variant that you have neither seen nor heard of? You do so because Soumitra Sanyal (@sanyalsoumitra) himself recommends it and offers to buy it for you from China during his visit there. For those of you who aren't familiar with his exploits, Soumitra-da is our resident walking and talking encyclopaedia on Chinese fountain pen matters. Just refer to his thread here to get a glimpse of his expertise and experience with the oriental pen makers and their instruments. That is how one fine
  15. Introduction Manoj Deshmukh of Fosfor pens (http://www.fosforpens.com) is a master pen turner and I always wanted a pen made by him. Given that the Islander model is considered the flagship of his line, it is only natural that I would like to have one of those in my modest collection. Normally Islanders are made of exotic wood burls or hand cast resin that Manoj personally prepares based on individual preferences. Personally, I am not a big fan of wooden pens and didn’t have much faith in my aesthetic abilities in specifying the right colours to cast the resin. Instead I opted to use Conway
  16. Prithwijit

    Asa Macaw Review

    Introduction “A lot can happen over coffee” screams the tagline of Café Coffee Day which is a renowned café chain in India. While I may not know much about what else can happen over coffee, I am about the narrate the story of a pen that came into being thanks to a little chit-chat over the brew. It all happened when I had a business trip to Chennai which necessitated a stay over on Friday night. I opted for a late morning flight back home on Saturday and called up Mr. Subramaniam of ASA pens to set up a meeting in the early morning. The gentleman that he is, he couldn’t refuse my intrusion i

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