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Pilot Or Sailor


Jay Jay
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sailor, by far has the smoothest nib i've tried so far. i've tried pilot in a pen shop and own graf von faber castel, nakaya, and omas, but i think sailor is the winner.

 

-rudy-

 

 

Cool. Thank you for that.

 

I still have not yet made a move. Life has overtaken me - as it does - so I will still be needing to decide pilot / sailor ... etc. Is your Sailor a fine or medium?

 

My experience is similar to Rudy's. When I went looking for an extra fine nib for editing and interlineation, I found the Sailor fine the smoothest of all the fine/extra-fines I tried. I have been extremely happy with it, and now have three Sailors -- a fine, a medium-fine, and a concord emperor -- and wouldn't give up any of the three. All three perform flawlessly. My sense, for what it's worth, is that Pilot is more focused on innovation and novelty (such as the Parallel, Pluminix/Plumix, and Falcon nibs and the 823 filling system), where Sailor seems to focus more on simply improving nib and feed performance.

+1

 

My Sailor Pens write flawlessly. Their nibs are excellent

I think of my FPs as my children.

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Just to add another idea...

 

I have a Pilot Bamboo with medium nib. This writes as broadly as any other (European) medium that I have, but more smoothly, and apparently with better flow. However, this may partly be a function of how the pen itself handles - I find it very comfortable - quite weighty, with a broad barrel, and slimmer section, separated by a step rather than a taper so the section is more or less parallel.

 

It comes with the fairly high capacity CON-70 filler/converter too, which is a bonus.

 

I have had a couple of Sailors pass through my hands and haven't wanted to keep either, although neither had a standard nib (music and then slightly italic).

 

I would gladly buy another Bamboo.

 

Andrew

Most of my posts are edited - it's because I'm a sloppy typist.

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Just to add another idea...

 

I have a Pilot Bamboo with medium nib. This writes as broadly as any other (European) medium that I have, but more smoothly, and apparently with better flow. However, this may partly be a function of how the pen itself handles - I find it very comfortable - quite weighty, with a broad barrel, and slimmer section, separated by a step rather than a taper so the section is more or less parallel.

 

It comes with the fairly high capacity CON-70 filler/converter too, which is a bonus.

 

I have had a couple of Sailors pass through my hands and haven't wanted to keep either, although neither had a standard nib (music and then slightly italic).

 

I would gladly buy another Bamboo.

 

Andrew

 

 

I had seen the Bamboo in my internet travels and certainly thought it was a most handsome pen, though I wondered how comfortable it would be. Your comments entice me to reconsider it, although it is probably out of my price range, just a touch. I've seen it with a couple of UK sellers, one of whom takes off the VAT for non-UK buyers.

 

But re the nib, would this mean that a Bamboo fine would write like a European fine, which is basically the writing width I'm looking for?

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I hope Jay Jay doesn't mind me hijacking the thread a little:

 

I have a Pilot Prera in F and was thinking about getting a Sailor Sapporo mini in EF. From John Mottishaw's site it seems Sailor EF would be 0.23mm while Pilot F is 0.35. My Prera though is MUCH finer than my Decimo even though they are both Fs, I think it's because it's much drier. Would a Sapporo EF be much finer and smoother than my Prera? I have read that the Sailor would be able to lay down a wet but very fine line, which I'm intrigued about but not sure if I should spend $150 if the width of the line would be about the same...

 

Although I'm sure my addiction to eventually lead me to buying it anyway :embarrassed_smile:

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sailor, by far has the smoothest nib i've tried so far. i've tried pilot in a pen shop and own graf von faber castel, nakaya, and omas, but i think sailor is the winner.

 

-rudy-

 

 

Cool. Thank you for that.

 

I still have not yet made a move. Life has overtaken me - as it does - so I will still be needing to decide pilot / sailor ... etc. Is your Sailor a fine or medium?

 

i tried it in a pen shop when i went to purchase another Omas. it was Sailor Professional Gear Mini with F nib in 14k gold but felt like writing with a 21k gold nib. this one is on my list of pens-to-get. i'm hoping to make another trip to japan later this year for business and when i do, i'll certainly hunt for it.

 

-rudy-

-rudy-

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I had seen the Bamboo in my internet travels and certainly thought it was a most handsome pen, though I wondered how comfortable it would be. Your comments entice me to reconsider it, although it is probably out of my price range, just a touch. I've seen it with a couple of UK sellers, one of whom takes off the VAT for non-UK buyers.

 

But re the nib, would this mean that a Bamboo fine would write like a European fine, which is basically the writing width I'm looking for?

 

Based on the medium writing like a European medium - I expect that the fine would be like a European fine. You could ask the retailer - Cult Pens sell them, and I have always found them helpful when I've phoned.

 

Andrew

Most of my posts are edited - it's because I'm a sloppy typist.

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[The 823 is a touch out of my price range - but it's a fair point about the pen that makes you smile when you reach for it.

 

Check eBay with patience, and it can fit in your pricerange quite well. Bought mine from Engeika, well below USD 220.

Latest additions: Aurora Dante Inferno (B), Graf Von Faber Castell Classic Wood Ebony (OM), La Couronne Du Comte Willem van Oranje (M), Montblanc Writers Edition Cervantes (M), Aurora Optima Cento Riflessi Limited Edition (B)

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I have a metal Pilot Falcon (SF) and Sailor 1911 (EF) in the post.

 

I've got a feeling my collection won't end here...

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I can only speak well of both my Pilots (Custom 823 and Custom 74 Demo). I got the 74 with a B nib, and the thing writes with an almost unnerving smoothness, while the 823's M nib combines smoothness with what I still call an uncanny level of control...I can't quite refer to it as "tooth" because the glide of the nib over most any paper imparts a unique (to me) quality. And, one major leg up over any Sailor pen is the transparent (74) and translucent (823) barrels, where you ascertain the total amount of ink remaining in the pen, as opposed to Sailor's "sight-glass" feature. Not a huge deal for some, but a rather big deal for me. If you find yourself with a black 823, you wouldn't know is was a "demo" until you held it up to a light, where all becomes visible.

 

Also, both pens hold a lot of ink, offering quite a bit of scribbling between fillings.

 

 

- Barrett

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[The 823 is a touch out of my price range - but it's a fair point about the pen that makes you smile when you reach for it.

 

Check eBay with patience, and it can fit in your pricerange quite well. Bought mine from Engeika, well below USD 220.

 

 

Thank you, I'll do that. I've been greatly overwhelmed by work and impending travelm (internal only, no possibility of duty-free), thus, sadly, my fountain pen buying plans have taken a back seat. So watching and waiting may work well - patience, patience, I can tell myself.

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I can only speak well of both my Pilots (Custom 823 and Custom 74 Demo). I got the 74 with a B nib, and the thing writes with an almost unnerving smoothness, while the 823's M nib combines smoothness with what I still call an uncanny level of control...I can't quite refer to it as "tooth" because the glide of the nib over most any paper imparts a unique (to me) quality. And, one major leg up over any Sailor pen is the transparent (74) and translucent (823) barrels, where you ascertain the total amount of ink remaining in the pen, as opposed to Sailor's "sight-glass" feature. Not a huge deal for some, but a rather big deal for me. If you find yourself with a black 823, you wouldn't know is was a "demo" until you held it up to a light, where all becomes visible.

 

Also, both pens hold a lot of ink, offering quite a bit of scribbling between fillings.

 

 

- Barrett

 

Hi Barrett,

 

Would you say the 832 M nib functioned the way people say a Japanese nib does, ie is finer than a European nib of the same indicated size? Or is this one a true medium M nib? The way you describe it is very enticing.

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Jay Jay: Near as I can tell, indeed it does behave a bit more as a Fine European nib (based on my comparison to my Lamy 2000, which also has a Medium nib). But it's the level of control I feel while writing with the 823 that puts it over the top in my opinion: the pen never feels like it's writing "ahead" of me, but gliding across the page, with little effort, yet with definite control. I'll refrain from using the word "perfect", which I'm generally suspicious of, and different people respond to these things in different ways, but I will say this pen has been more than a pleasant surprise from the moment I first picked it up.

 

http://mysite.verizon.net/bwbenton/Pens/P823inhand.jpg

What the translucent-black 823 looks like.

 

 

- Barrett

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I like Pilot pens very much, from the cheap to the <$100 ones which I own. I've only encountered one lemon and was able to send it back to the online Malaysian shop and get a refund. I think there was a bad batch of Pilot 74s that skipped. :(

 

Well anyway, my current favourite is the Custom Heritage 91 with SF nib. It is a little too toothy but I've smoothened the nib on micromesh. If you don't write very small (my 'e', 'o' etc are about 3.8mm), go for the SM nib which should have a larger soft spot and still have a wee bit of flex that makes it a pleasure to write with. I thought that the F is very stiff and I'm assuming the M writes the same.

 

It's below your budget and if you like it enough, you can get two! :bunny01:

Edited by holgalee
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You've probably heard this already, but thought I'd throw in my two cents. I have both Pilot and Sailor pens and I don't think you could go wrong with either. I'd recommend going to a pen shop and trying several of each out, just to see which one you prefer. I think you'll be happy with either.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, I finally went ahead and did the following:

 

I bought two pens from Asian dealers, still costing less, all up, than $200 AUD.

 

The first was a Pilot Custom 74. I actually went for the Fine, despite my initial focus on Medium. But I have very few fine pens, so I thought it was worth a try. While I'm not totally in love with the pen, I am enjoying it, and have got used to the very fine Fine line. The pen worked perfectly out of the box. I also like the feel of it my hand. It's not too big and it's nothing flash, but it feels right for me. I'm undecided as to whether I always want use a pen that writes this fine - and very occasionally it runs a tad dry in the midst of a stroke (probably the way I write) - but it's smooth as.

 

And because I thought I should try Sailor, I decided to buy a ProColor pen in Medium. It was relatively inexpensive and seemed to have more heft to it than a 1911 Young (Somiko, what have you), which was in a similar price range. The pen is smaller than the Pilot, of course, and though that's not a huge issue, I prefer the feel of the Pilot. The Sailor, however, a lovely purple colour, although it was advertised as blue. I saw the pic on the website and it certainly looked more of a purple - and I'm happy with that. It's a lovely object. I got a Medium nib, as I said, but - it's a scratchy old thing, not what I was hoping for at all! I've done the thing with the brown paper but that has had little effect. I'll probably have to do some more work on it (there ain't no pen meisters around where I live) or put it down to making a bad choice and consigning to the back of the drawer. Pity, it's a sweet thing and the line itself is what I was looking for but it's a bit of a scratch fest to get it. It seems to be the left-hand tine that's the problem. If I draw lines left to right, it's OK, but I obviously want to do more with it than that.

 

Someone had suggested in a reply to my initial email that possibly Sailor's quality control is not what it used to be. Well, I have no idea about that but this has left me thinking that if I went for a more expensive Japanese pen in Medium it would be a Pilot. I'll start saving my pennies again and keep a look out online for deals on Pilots when my wallet has recovered.

 

I wish I could have been able to try these pens out before buying but they ain't about where I live.

 

Thanks all for your input. It was a learning curve.

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Jay Jay: It's true that getting to grips with whether a F or M or B nib works for you is rather difficult, and especially when you can't do the try-before-you-buy thing. I would have recommended a M nib on the 74, not because I think Pilot F nibs are mediore, but that there is a difference in terms of a certain tactile "something" (not that everyone here agrees on this, to put it mildly!). Also remember that there's always the option of getting that nib "tuned" if desired.

 

Finding the pen that "simply works" for you can, indeed, involve a bit of work, but it needn't necessarily be a Quixotic journey.

 

 

- Barrett

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Jay Jay: It's true that getting to grips with whether a F or M or B nib works for you is rather difficult, and especially when you can't do the try-before-you-buy thing. I would have recommended a M nib on the 74, not because I think Pilot F nibs are mediore, but that there is a difference in terms of a certain tactile "something" (not that everyone here agrees on this, to put it mildly!). Also remember that there's always the option of getting that nib "tuned" if desired.

 

Finding the pen that "simply works" for you can, indeed, involve a bit of work, but it needn't necessarily be a Quixotic journey.

 

 

- Barrett

 

Barrett: You are probably right in retrospect. In fact, I think you're dead right. But I'm still not unhappy with the Custom 74 Fine at all, and am getting more used to it; using it a lot in fact. Having a good Fine in my kit is a positive, I reckon.

 

Possibly I can come back at it, buy a Custom 74 M as well, and then I'd have a pair of them. As the Fine's black, then I could get an M in red.

 

The Sailor is such a disappointment. I can't bring myself to deal with it right now, but I will try and see what I can do.

 

If I ever get to Japan - which is not completely off the cards, but not for some time - I would be in pen heaven, and then I could try to my heart's content.

 

Thanks again.

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