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  1. rpsyed

    Romillo Narcea #9

    http://i.imgur.com/BYIdam1.jpg Well, a new Romillo came in today. This time it's a Narcea #9 in green and black ebonite. It's not one of Romillo's standard offerings but he agreed to do a one-off for me. The ebonite looks gorgeous! Very cool of Alvaro to do a one-off for me; he didn't have to do that. http://i.imgur.com/CTx5y1M.jpg It's the smallest pen Romillo offers but it still a good usable size, especially since the nib is so tall. http://i.imgur.com/bzJ6BO9.jpg?1 Each Romillo comes with a certificate and a writing sample. My Narcea is pen #450. http://i.imgur.com/KnRfiTe.jpg Instructions for the eyedropper filling system and several spare o-rings in case the o-ring sealing the section to barrel threads breaks or wears out. http://i.imgur.com/rbipWpN.jpg The Romillo boxes are really nice. Compact but elegant and good at protecting the pen from damage. Also a small bottle of Romillo Blue ink. The bottle is simpler than it used to be. I'm quite excited to try it, it looks beautiful! I've only gotten Romillo Sepia ink in the past. http://i.imgur.com/B1o4pvt.jpg The black felt pen sleeve and eyedropper. http://i.imgur.com/goKslhF.jpg From left: Lamy Safari, Romillo Narcea #9, Romillo Essential #9, Nakaya Piccolo, Romillo Sil #9 http://i.imgur.com/AK1qk2F.jpg Even though the Romillo Narcea #9 is the smallest pen in the Romillo lineup it still has the massive #9 nib. Also a very usable size at 10 millimeters or so bigger than a Piccolo http://i.imgur.com/XPOUEBK.jpg Lamy Safari, Romillo Narcea #9 and Nakaya Piccolo nibs. http://i.imgur.com/tkSxnTn.jpg The Romillo feed seems to have changed as well. I kind of like the older, bigger feed but I doubt it has any functional difference. It's still a gorgeous looking ebonite feed =] http://i.imgur.com/lfD0cEJ.jpg Romillo Narcea and Sil nibs. http://i.imgur.com/CW6HIus.jpg Essential, Narcea, and Sil nibs. These are all #9 nibs but since each nib is handmade and hand engraved, there are some variations in their dimensions and shape. http://i.imgur.com/IIyjIii.jpg Again, I chose to get the solid gold cabochon at the barrel end. Just a small disc of 18kt gold but it's a nice touch I think. Now, I gotta ink this up ...
  2. http://i.imgur.com/7x4nKSN.jpg The Romillo Sil has long been on my radar, ever since I first heard about Romillo. The gentle tapering lines and absence of section threads made for such a clean and attractive design. A pen without any unnecessary parts or ornamentation, fitted with a wonderful handmade nib. http://i.imgur.com/wA3LYuB.jpg I knew I had to have one but for the first couple Romillo pens I bought (an Eo #9 and Essential #9), I went with the threaded models. It seemed safer. The Romillo cap lips are very, very thin and while I believe Alvaro would handle any warranty work without hassle I’d rather not have to deal with it in the first place. http://i.imgur.com/OuGPIga.jpg Romillo Sil #9 and Platinum 3776 Century. http://i.imgur.com/w1GKXUX.jpg Eventually, I took a gamble and ordered my Sil #9, in the lovely terracotta ebonite. I prefer simple designs generally and I felt like a solid color ebonite better fit the Sil model (I was also worried about the the mottled pattern being broken by the threads that connect the barrel and section together. http://i.imgur.com/Gr8iPsw.jpg Romillo Sil #9 and Platinum 3776 Century nibs. I swapped the nibs on 3776 and Nakaya Piccolo. http://i.imgur.com/yB0YNUW.jpg From left: Romillo Sil #9, Essential #9 and Eo #9. In the end, I wound up with the Sil in terracotta ebonite, the lentil roll-stop and the barrel-end cabochon. I had got the cabochon, which is a solid 18kt disc with the Romillo logo in deep relief, on my Essential and always thought it was a nice and subtle touch to an otherwise minimally adorned pen. It also kind of cool that the Romillo logo is a stylized ‘R’, which is my first initial. I’ve not personally asked, but in another review, I read Alvaro was open to doing custom barrel cabochons, if you wish for something other than the stylized ‘R.’ http://i.imgur.com/bozp3iu.jpg The certificate and writing sample for my pen. Each Romillo pen comes with one. http://i.imgur.com/MXzr4z4.jpg Instructions for the eyedropper filling system. I should preface my comments by saying I am a big Romillo fan. I first learned about Romillo from a post on Leigh Reyes blog last year, after she bought a Narcea with the K-nib - an in-house, handmade nib meant to be flexible. A little over a year later I had purchased four Romillo pens, of which I still have three. I traded one of them, an Eo #9, for a Danitrio Sho-Genkai. http://i.imgur.com/ILfbLyr.jpg From top: Scriptorium Pens Aeterna (medium-size) and Romillo Sil #9. The Scriptorium is in Tibaldi Impero celluloid and the Romillo is in ebonite -- both wonderful materials. http://i.imgur.com/5kZEamq.jpg Romillo Sil #9 nib and JoWo #6 nib. Romillo pens definitely aren’t for everyone but preferring simple and clipless pens for their clean look, Romillo pens was a natural fit for me. Romillo does not have an “Add to Cart” button on his website. In fact, there are not even any prices listed on his website. To get the prices of the pens, you must email him. After that, he will send you a price list along with a Romillo Pens catalog. I think it would be easier for all parties to just post a price list publically but I’m sure Alvaro has his reasons for not doing so. In any case, an email to him will get you the catalog and pricelist and I’ve never once felt like I was pressured to order while asking questions. http://i.imgur.com/Q75GemL.jpg I ordered the pen in January and received received it February and it has been more or less, continuously inked. I’ve only been using fountain pens for just about two years. I started with a Lamy Safari, like many others, but quickly moved up to pens in higher price brackets. But being so new to the hobby, there’s a lot I’ve yet to experience. But, for me, at least, the Romillo nibs are just superb. http://i.imgur.com/BaJH0xN.jpg From top: Newton Pens Orville (medium-size), Romillo Eo #9, Scriptorium Pens Aeterna (medium-size), Romillo Sil #9, Romillo Essential #9. I ordered the pen in January and received received it February and it has been more or less, continuously inked. I’ve only been using fountain pens for just about two years. I started with a Lamy Safari, like many others, but quickly moved up to pens in higher price brackets. But being so new to the hobby, there’s a lot I’ve yet to experience. But, for me, at least, the Romillo nibs are just superb. http://i.imgur.com/v4iWgcY.jpg The feed seems to have changed on the newer Romillo pens. My newest Romillo, the green and black Narcea, has a flatter ebonite feed. I like the look of the fatter ones better, but there's no difference in function as far as I can tell. My Sil #9 has a firm Fine-Medium nib, which is the most true to it’s name than my other firm Romillo nibs, which are actually quite springy. The Sil nib is pretty stiff but very smooth. All Romillo nibs, in my experience, have a unique feedback to them. It’s similar to writing with a graphite pencil with very smooth and soft lead. Some of the nibs have more or less feedback but none of them has ever been scratchy. They do have sweet spots though — due to the size of the nibs, they work best if you write with full arm movement. For finger-writers, I’d recommend getting a Romillo with the #7 size nib because of that. http://i.imgur.com/pprgAAZ.jpg Writing sample of Romilo Sil #9 with fine-medium nib, Danitrio Sho-Genkai with broad nib, and Newton Orville with #8 JoWo medium nib, and Romillo Essential #9 with fine nib. http://i.imgur.com/NVPYW3k.jpg The packaging of the pens are quite nice but also simple and compact, which I appreciate. I have more detailed photos in other posts, so I went spent too much time on it. The pen is on the long side but not overly so. You can see it compared to a Lamy Safari and a Nakaya Piccolo The ebonite is not coated with anything and so overtime the ebonite with oxidize and discolor. If that’s a problem for you, then Romillo may not be the best choice. The only other material available is celluloid, which is an early thermoplastic which can stain and discolor. Personally, I think the ebonite oxidizing is just a manifestation of wabi-sabi - beauty in imperfection, beauty in wear-and-tear. I do my best to protect the pen from UV light and I don’t soak the pen ever, but when the ebonite begins to oxidize, I won’t fight it. http://i.imgur.com/Qf0pcX4.jpg Two #9 Romillo nibs. From left: Narcea #9 and Sil #9. Since each nib is handmade and hand-engraved, there's some small difference in the dimensions and shape of each nib. http://i.imgur.com/GBVS8Pb.jpg Lamy Safari, Romillo Sil #9, and Nakaya Piccolo. So far I’ve run Sailor Douyou Brown, Shigure Purple, and Romillo Sepia ink through it and it’s been flawless with both Sailor inks, and slightly dry with Romillo Sepia. Romillo pens are expensive. And it can be hard for some to see the value proposition of a pen like this. The honest truth is, while a Romillo pen is a great writer, it’s NOT going to be a 10x better writing experience than Lamy 2000 or Pilot VP. http://i.imgur.com/xpk7OHF.jpg http://i.imgur.com/bIEiZZY.jpg Three #9 Romillo nibs. From left: Essential #9, Narcea #9, and Sil #9. Since each nib is handmade and hand-engraved, there's some small difference in the dimensions and shape of each nib. http://i.imgur.com/lvJQ0sn.jpg From left: Lamy Safari, Romillo Narcea #9, Romillo Essential #9, Nakaya Piccolo, Romillo Sil #9. http://i.imgur.com/kwexzUO.jpg From left: Lamy Safari, Nakaya Piccolo, and Romillo Sil #9. http://i.imgur.com/gOHEdZS.jpg No custom pen made in a developed country with high labor costs is going to be a value pen. Hand-turning a pen and hand-forging and engraving a nib takes time and very skilled labor. It’s up to the buyer to decide if they value the craftsmanship involved or not. I personally do, and would gladly buy any of my Romillo pens again, but it’s certainly reasonable to think, as I’m sure many do, that they are simply too much money for what you get. In the end, all I can say is if the aesthetics of Romillo pens work for you, you’ll get a great writing pen that’s incredibly well-made by a master craftsman.
  3. rpsyed

    Romillo Sil #9

    New pen arrived today =] http://i.imgur.com/WPlVzh6.jpg Just got my Romillo Sil #9 in terracotta ebonite! http://i.imgur.com/A4lfSns.jpg It's a slip cap pen similar to the vintage Waterman 12 or other pens in the Waterman 1X series. Really elegant pen, I think. The roll-stopper on the cap is a customization I asked for. You can also order the pen plain or with a clip. http://i.imgur.com/FCr8Nhm.jpg I had asked for the cabochon on my Essential #9 and thought it was a really good touch, so I asked for it again. It's a solid gold emblem embedded into the barrel and has the Romillo logo in deep relief. http://i.imgur.com/crb9RAu.jpg Romillo Sil #9 compared to a Scriptorium Aeterna. The Romillo is ebonite, Scriptorium is celluloid. http://i.imgur.com/2EEbtbW.jpg?1 The pen's certificate. Each Romillo pen comes with this document, which states the pen's number -- my Eo is 379, my Essential is 422, and my Sil is 444. At the bottom is a writing sample with the nib. I ordered a Medium-Fine. http://i.imgur.com/yCQtZER.jpg?1 Instructions for the Sil #9 eyedropper. Alvaro found that the converter can't keep up with the #9 nib and huge ebonite feed so all #9 nib pens are eyedropper-fillers. The #7 nib pens come in both eyedropper and cartridge/converter filling systems. http://i.imgur.com/R291ntx.jpg Huge, gorgeous ebonite feed! Provides a really reliable, wet flow. http://i.imgur.com/ayYKFzp.jpg Sil #9, Essential #9, and Eo #9. http://i.imgur.com/Sg20YqM.jpg Romillo Sil with a Platinum 3776 Century. http://i.imgur.com/iTLI8L6.jpg http://i.imgur.com/GpD9BWZ.jpg Romillo #9 nib and Platinum 3776 Century nib. I actually swapped the Platinum nib with my Nakaya so the Platinum has a Nakaya nib in it right now but they are the same size, shape etc. http://i.imgur.com/P7ebS9v.jpg Romillo #9 nib and JoWo #6 nib in a Scriptorium Aeterna. http://i.imgur.com/sv1uilm.jpg The Romillo nib design, with the wings reaching towards the tip is one of the most attractive I've ever seen. http://i.imgur.com/cFUvarp.jpg Isn't is a lovely shape? Now to decide what to ink it up with ...

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