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Found 5 results

  1. ParkerBeta

    Loclen Electa

    Loclen is a new pen manufacturer (founded 2008) based in a small town outside Venice, Italy. They have launched three fountain pen models so far, in each case starting with a Kickstarter campaign. (A couple more models are in the Kickstarter phase right now.) I was very taken by a picture I saw of the Loclen Electa somewhere. The pen I saw had the polished black metal (ruthenium) finish, and the knurled knob showing through the cutaway barrel in order to serve as a piston knob for a conventional converter wherein the ink level could be viewed by another cutaway window in the barrel was extremely cool. I guess this is what made the Kickstarter campaign for the pen a success (although I don't know how much of a success, because I happened to miss it). Anyway, Loclen must have done well with that campaign, because shortly after the campaign, they began to manufacture it for general sale. If I were to choose one word to describe the design of the Electa, I would say "steampunk," especially for the all-brass version. In fact, I think the body is all-brass, and you can either have it as-is, or with a shiny chrome finish, or a shiny ruthenium finish. The one I have is the shiny chrome finish. My Loclen Electa. Note the "steampunk" aspect of the beautifully knurled knob peeping through the cutaway barrel. The two longitudinal slits in the barrel are a viewing window into the conventional piston-style cartridge converter on whose tail the knurled knob is riding. You get a "piston-filling" pen with ink-view window out of a conventional cartridge-converter pen! Of course, you have to use the converter and not a cartridge in order to enjoy all this. The clip comes separate from the body -- you can choose whether to put it on the cap or go clipless, but if you want a clip, it is better not to change your mind as frequent mounting of the clip may mar the finish. Note also the machining marks on the cap and barrel, only partially covered by the shiny chrome plating. The pen is not very large -- only about 5 inches (126mm) capped. The all-metal construction makes it quite heavy (39 grams). The cap is small but posts on the end of the barrel (there are threads there). The cap actually requires almost four full turns to unscrew -- a bit much, in my opinion. One interesting aspect of the design is that the section does not screw into the barrel -- instead, it is press-fitted there, with a couple of O-rings for a tight fit. This is unique among all the pens in my collection. The advertising copy for the pen claims that this "floating" section makes for a "shock absorber" so that the nib feels smoother when flowing on the paper. Unfortunately, the section itself is so short that I could not get a good enough grip on it to be able to pull it out of the barrel. The instruction pamphlet that came with the pen said one should wrap a thin piece of foam around the section in order to get a good grip to pull it out, and I couldn't find such a piece of foam (I tried wrapping cloth around the section but it was not grippy enough). Although the pen is on the short side, I found it more comfortable to write with the cap unposted, as posting makes it rather more heavy than is ideal, leading to fatigue after writing for a few paragraphs. At any rate, the steel M nib, although small and quite unadorned (no manufacturer engravings), writes extremely well. Perhaps the section does indeed have a "shock absorber" quality! The nib does have a slightly springy feel but that is probably the section moving, not the tines of the nib, as the nib exhibits next to no line-width variation. To summarize, the pen's selling point is its unique design. The knurled piston knob is very striking, and the ink view windows cut into the barrel are a good combination of form and function. The section is wide enough for a comfortable grip, although a bit on the shorter side, forcing your fingers to sit on the somewhat sharp threads. The body is machined by hand, and has the machining marks to prove it, though it is very well made to tight tolerances. This is a major turnoff for me. There are other machined metal pens like the Karas Kustoms that do not show such evidence of machining. The plain un-engraved and small nib is another turnoff, though it writes very well indeed. Overall, I would rate the pen as "Kickstarter" quality, i.e., a promising initial design that needs to be a bit more, er, polished. In this regard, the biggest issue I have with the pen is the asking price. The Kickstarter backers got the pen in return for a very reasonable 65 euro contribution. But the pen is now distributed in the US at a list price of $250, and sold by various online retailers for $200. That makes it highly overpriced, as you are getting only its unique design and not the execution that sweats the last few details that may have made the pen worth the asking price. I bought a "show demo" model direct from the US distributor (Kenro) for slightly less than half of the list price, and I still do not feel it is worth the price I paid for it, notwithstanding the excellent writing quality of the nib.
  2. ASCIIaardvark

    Advice On Starting A Pen-Pal Group?

    I think snail-mail would suit the Steampunk community - the chance to use fountain or dip pens, wax seals, gold leaf, etc. My experience with reddit.com/r/FountainPenPals was a lack of connection -- I had fun with it, but rarely did the correspondence continue beyond the first letter from each match. Any advice for starting a new pen-pal matching service? I'm thinking: limit of 2 pen-pals at a time 'till you've participated in a previous round of matching & nobody complained you flaked on mailing themoffer InCharacter (writing as your steampunk persona) or OutOfCharacter (writing as yourself) options:Prompt for IC: "The Great Alliance is signed, your government calls on you to write these foreigners & get to know our new allies to strengthen the bonds among our nations"Prompt for OOC: you see your pen pal's answers from sign-up process questions, like "what's your favorite part of steampunk?" or "how do you participate in steampunk?"Figured I'd use Google Forms to get everyone's address, email, one-off/continuing-correspondence preference, IC/OOC preference, & answers to any prompt questions -- leave that open for ~10 days, then email everyone their match(es). I'll post the announcement on a few steampunk & pen pal forums like BrassGoggles, reddit's r/steampunk and r/penpals, the local steampunk Facebook, etc. If it goes well, run a new round of match-ups every month or two. ...thoughts?
  3. Chushev

    Hello From Los Angeles

    Hey FPN, We are Chavdar and Alex Chushev. We make fine handcrafted pens and we’re excited to finally join this awesome community. Here's some of our work:
  4. A CULT tribute to this distinguished palate delicacy as well as to the homeland of both the beverage and our company itself, this homely collection turned out to be a break-through phenomenon in the industry. Innovative for its steampunk design and local-roots idea, it is already setting up a trend on the market. The hand-made hammered copper body and the stainless-steel trim, culminating into a cork cap top, are as fantastically uncommon for a writing instrument as only Montegrappa can be. The Grappa collection will be offered as a fountain or a rollerball pen, limited to the Montegrappa’s foundation year-number 1912 for each of the two modes. The Grappa fountain pen is fit traditionally with a customized 18k gold nib, and is both cartridge or converter-fed. Montegrappa delivers the Grappa collection in exclusively designed boxes, as much impactful as the product itself, with the writing instrument to be exhibited within a real blown-glass grappa bottle!
  5. Here is another image of a high end ballpoint that we are getting well known for. This has a white and black Franck Muller dial in the hand casted barrel. I also attached a pix of a pen stand/paperweight that we make out of our left over parts of watches and clocks that are to large to use in our pens. These make great display stands! We sold MANNY of them at the DC pen show. One of the other members here mentioned that I should call this line of our pens "Time to Write" series. I kinda like that! Its fitting! Thanks for looking!

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