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Advice Needed - Vp Or Imperial Triumph?


CharlieTurtle
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Okay, so I was outbid on the Sheaffer I was going to get (damn ;) ) and started looking around, and I noticed that a lot of the time, hooded nibs are recommended as an alternative to inlaid/inset nibs.

 

With brings me to my actual question: which is better for me, a Sheaffer Imperial Triumph or a Vanishing Point?

 

The criteria I have:

 

  1. The pen would be used for taking lecture notes, and I can refill every day if necessary.
  2. I usually carry my pens clipped to the folder I'm using, or tucked inside if the clip doesn't allow it (looking at you, Parker Vector)
  3. The pen needs to be blue (I know, this has no effect on the performance, but I'm OCD and it has to match!)
  4. I like a fine to medium nib.

The gold nib on the VP interests me because it's a little different, and considering that people have said inlaid nibs can be difficult sometimes, I'm cautious, as I have no skill whatsoever at tweaking pens.

 

So, what do you think?

 

PS if I do get a Vanishing Point is it worth having it tweaked by Mr Binder first?

You can spot a writer a mile off, they're the ones meandering in the wrong direction muttering to themselves and almost walking into every second lamppost.

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I can only speak for the Vanishing Point. I think because of the retractable nib it would be great for taking notes. You don't have to worry about your nib drying out if you leave the cap off, and none of that on/off/on/off with the cap when a simple click will do it.

 

I have three nibs, fine, medium, and broad. My medium falls much closer to broad than it does fine. They are all wonderfully smooth and consistent writers. If you have an opportunity to test it in a brick and morter store do so, and make sure the size is to your liking.

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One of the complaints you will hear quite often about the Vanishing Point is the low amount of ink they hold. Having said that, it is an excellent pen and as pointed out above, the nib recedes into the barrel like a ballpoint.

 

As for the Sheaffer Triumph Imperial - I own Sheaffer 330 Imperials NOS and a Sheaffer Imperial Deluxe II NOS - I love them. They are excellent pens and hold a reasonable amount of ink. They've actually surprised me with their capacity. I'd like to suggest you take a look at PeytonStreetPens. Teri has an excellent number of various Sheaffer Triumphs - many NOS and the prices are incredibly reasonable given these are virtually new pens that have a small mar somewhere from simply lying around in a drawer. I have absolutely noaffiliation with this store other then as a very satisfied customer. Teri is excellent to deal with and will answer any questions you have to your complete satsifaction.

"Minds are like parachutes. They only function when open." James Dewar

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1. Good, if you get the VP you will be refilling the tiny con50 often. Perhaps refilling cartridges would be a good idea for this purpose.

2. The VP clip is pretty tight, but no problem clipping it on a notepad.

3. Dark blue ok?

4. I think engeika sells VPs mainly with F nib

 

I think the VP is a nice pen, I don't use mine so much, but that's also because it has an accountant nib so it is often too fine.

It looks nice, and the retractable nib is a good feature. I never had any problems with the clip being where it is, but I was taught how to hold a pen properly when I was seven years old...

It has some weight to it, more than my other FPs, but I've never been doing any long writing sessions with it, so I can't say how it affects the hand in regards to fatigue.

Oh, and you may want to pick up a con20 if you buy it...again, I can't say for sure because I am actually waiting for my con20 now...I have only been using the tiny con50.

 

Since the whole nib section comes out of the VP, it is very easy and fast to clean it and the con50 in running water.

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I have a Matte Black Vp and i love it. I use the con 20 and i havent had any issues with ink running out but it really depends on how much note taking you do. The clip on it is pretty tight and agin no problem on it. I originally bought the pen with with a medium and i agree that medium was more broad then anything. Much to wide for my writing so i had to get a replacement with an EF which was more what i was looking for.

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The imperial is a smooth and good looking pen. However, on mine i don`t like the fact that i can`t post properly, and without posting the cap the pen feels a little short. Also, if the pen is not properly cleaned and if i don`t use good quality ink, it sometimes had the tendency to skip. But i have been hearing the same about the vanishing point. Both pens should be very smooth, and both use proprietary ink cartridges. In the end, it`s a personal choice. I can`t say i fancy the design of the pilot in this case.

Edited by rochester21
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I have a Matte Black Vp and i love it. I use the con 20 and i havent had any issues with ink running out but it really depends on how much note taking you do. The clip on it is pretty tight and agin no problem on it. I originally bought the pen with with a medium and i agree that medium was more broad then anything. Much to wide for my writing so i had to get a replacement with an EF which was more what i was looking for.

 

At most, a few pages of A4.

You can spot a writer a mile off, they're the ones meandering in the wrong direction muttering to themselves and almost walking into every second lamppost.

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The imperial is a smooth and good looking pen. However, on mine i don`t like the fact that i can`t post properly, and without posting the cap the pen feels a little short. Also, if the pen is not properly cleaned and if i don`t use good quality ink, it sometimes had the tendency to skip. But i have been hearing the same about the vanishing point. Both pens should be very smooth, and both use proprietary ink cartridges. In the end, it`s a personal choice. I can`t say i fancy the design of the pilot in this case.

 

If it doesn't post, I'll lose the cap within seconds XD Our desk are sloped and stuff rolls.

You can spot a writer a mile off, they're the ones meandering in the wrong direction muttering to themselves and almost walking into every second lamppost.

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Vanishing Point. No way to lose the cap at lectures. This comes from horrible, horrible experience.

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The VP gives me jitters everytime I hear its name. Its because of the one time I unscrewed the Vanishing Point at a shop. I thought it was the rotating type mechanism that rectracted the nib.

 

The nib/filler section sprung out, so did my heart. Fortunately I caught it before it fell.

 

Anyways, both pens are different designs. So if you want a retractable pen, there's the VP. The Scheaffer does draw attention though.

Edited by proton007

In a world where there are no eyes the sun would not be light, and in a world where there were no soft skins rocks would not be hard, nor in a world where there were no muscles would they be heavy. Existence is relationship and you're smack in the middle of it.

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I can only speak to the VP, and it's a great pen. However, it does have low ink capacity, so unless you're willing to flush out and refill your pen every two days, you may want to consider a different pen OR do what I did... which is to slowly amass an unwieldy collection of VPs so that I don't run out of ink. (Warning you that the latter option may get expensive :lol: )

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I have both pens and, for note taking, the VP wins hands down. The key is that note taking during lectures is not usually a continuous process. There are starts and stops. The VP makes these pauses in note taking easy to accommodate thanks to the open and close mechanism. Both are excellent writers, so nothing to choose between on that score. The VPs small ink capacity will not likely be a binding constraint so long as you carry a cart as a backup. I actually find the small capacity sort of nice since it is an excuse to change inks often.

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I tend to look at pens from the repairmans viewpoint, but also from a user and collector. Both are very good pens. I like the feel of the VP a bit better, both the Namiki and the Pilot versions, and have several of them. The Decimo and Pilot VP have metal threads and are quite durable. The faceted Namiki (which also appeared with the Pilot name on it) has a weakness in that the barrel (i.e. button end) threads are plastic which can be a problem - see this article for details. I don't know if the Pilot pens have a problem with the rachet, but the early ones can wear out and make the mechanism hang when you try to react it. I don't find the ink capacity to be an issue. I tend to fill when I think I'm going to do a lot of writing anyway, so I've never run out.

 

The Sheaffer Imperial is a well made pen, with lots of variation in style and finishes over the years. Nice writing pens, with the iconic inlaid nib. Most take either the squeeze or piston converters. Their weakness is that the sections occasionally crack, and the clips occasionally get wobbly. Good, reliable writers. I just don't find them to be terribly exciting.

 

But I have to say that I really like the VP pens. I have two or three loaded most of the time, and carry them. If I want a good utility pen, I grab a VP. Quick notes, entries in the checkbook, writing on work order forms as I estimate repairs, I use a VP. I don't need another, but they still tempt me. When I think about another modern line, I think of Pilot and the VP.

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They really are such different pens that it is difficult to make a comparison. I have multiples of both and probably use the VP more between the two, but they each are enjoyable. I do think there is likely going to be a significant price difference between the two, but if you are willing to plunk down the $$ for a VP, then do so and start watching for a reasonably priced Imperial on eBay. I have paid as low as $10 shipped for a near-new Sheaffer 330 FP & pencil set, but a gold nibbed Imperial can often be found in the $25-50 range without much trouble if you are patient. If it is a cartridge pen, you only need flush it and load it up (refilling carts is easy). A touchdown-fill Imperial will likely need restoration, but you can do it yourself with a small investment in some parts/materials or send it off to a multitude of people for sac & O-ring replacement. I say go for both, but the VP is a good starting point for a primary user, especially in your situation.

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Just since no one else has mentioned it, unless I'm mistaken, the VP nib and clip are on the same end of the barrel, meaning you would have to grip the pen around the clip or next to it or some variation there-of. I'm not sure how people do it, to me it would drive me batty. If I am wrong, someone who has a Pilot/Namiki VP will correct me. But to me, that, combined with the small ink capacity- is a deal breaker; I would go for the Imperial.

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I also have both Imperials and VPs. Both are great pens and those who say that VPs are great for taking notes are 100% correct. But somehow I just like the Imperials better, especially the one pictured here. I got it from Ron Z about five years ago and it's one of my very best writing pens! (It happens to be inked right now.) The neat thing about Imperials (including the later Triumph family) is that even the lower tier models with steel nibs write as nicely as the high-end models with gold nibs. Sheaffer just did an amazing job on these inlaid nibs.

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Bill Sexauer
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I'm not sure how people do it, to me it would drive me batty.

 

I don't even notice the clip, and I've used the pens for years.

 

Bill, I think I bought that pen at the Raleigh Show. I'll have to let you try my gold filled Imperial with the stub nib that I ground. That one isn't going anywhere. Part because of the nib, part because of the pen built from parts. I've never seen another TD with vertical lines in cap, barrel, AND blindcap.

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The VP, I was considering exactly because it's so good for quick notes. I have a very open (not sure that's the right word) that was forced on me by Lamy, so I'm not too worried about the clip - I think it would be between my thumb and index finger.

 

The Sheaffer has the beautiful nib I wanted, but I was put off drastically by the sac filling system because I've only ever had piston fillers before. I can get one from PeytonStreetPens, with the modern converter and shipping, for around the same price I've seen some Vanishing Points available on eBay.

 

I think I'm gonna have to try and find somewhere to try a few. Oh dear.

You can spot a writer a mile off, they're the ones meandering in the wrong direction muttering to themselves and almost walking into every second lamppost.

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The VP, I was considering exactly because it's so good for quick notes. I have a very open (not sure that's the right word) that was forced on me by Lamy, so I'm not too worried about the clip - I think it would be between my thumb and index finger.

 

The Sheaffer has the beautiful nib I wanted, but I was put off drastically by the sac filling system because I've only ever had piston fillers before. I can get one from PeytonStreetPens, with the modern converter and shipping, for around the same price I've seen some Vanishing Points available on eBay.

 

I think I'm gonna have to try and find somewhere to try a few. Oh dear.

 

 

Hmm, what inlaid nib pen are you looking at on PeytonStreetPens? You can get an inlaid nib from that site for as little as $30 (if you get a 330 "seconds" which means it has some cap corrosion or slight blemish on the pen somewhere). You can get a brand new 330 with no blemishes for $44. Sheaffer has a piston converter that can be had for around $9 (Teri sells them at PeytonStreetPens) and they fit nearly all of the inlaid nib Sheaffer Imperials. So that's an option if you're turned off by sac filling systems.

 

So you could get a new 330 plus a piston converter for $53 plus shipping, much less than a new VP (a VP can be had on ebay for about $100 if you get one with a "special alloy" nib instead of an 18k gold nib. With the gold nib, they're about $120 or $130).

 

I've had a few used 330's that all wrote spectacularly, and I have only heard good things about their nibs. I think it would be a great pen for note taking (as long as you don't mind taking the cap on and off frequently).

 

I also have had a VP and currently own a Decimo (the slimmer, lighter version of the VP) that I love. I think they are the PERFECT note-taking pens, as they have smooth nibs and no cap to have to take on and off/potentially lose. I have a Fine nib that writes an EF wet line, and is a smooth ride. If you have a medium or fine nib, you would have to write a LOT to run through a whole converter fill in a day, before you could re-ink it. With my Fine nib and a fair amount of writing, it takes me days before I have to refill the converter.

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Hmm, what inlaid nib pen are you looking at on PeytonStreetPens? You can get an inlaid nib from that site for as little as $30 (if you get a 330 "seconds" which means it has some cap corrosion or slight blemish on the pen somewhere). You can get a brand new 330 with no blemishes for $44. Sheaffer has a piston converter that can be had for around $9 (Teri sells them at PeytonStreetPens) and they fit nearly all of the inlaid nib Sheaffer Imperials. So that's an option if you're turned off by sac filling systems.

 

So you could get a new 330 plus a piston converter for $53 plus shipping, much less than a new VP (a VP can be had on ebay for about $100 if you get one with a "special alloy" nib instead of an 18k gold nib. With the gold nib, they're about $120 or $130).

 

I've had a few used 330's that all wrote spectacularly, and I have only heard good things about their nibs. I think it would be a great pen for note taking (as long as you don't mind taking the cap on and off frequently).

 

I also have had a VP and currently own a Decimo (the slimmer, lighter version of the VP) that I love. I think they are the PERFECT note-taking pens, as they have smooth nibs and no cap to have to take on and off/potentially lose. I have a Fine nib that writes an EF wet line, and is a smooth ride. If you have a medium or fine nib, you would have to write a LOT to run through a whole converter fill in a day, before you could re-ink it. With my Fine nib and a fair amount of writing, it takes me days before I have to refill the converter.

 

Someone above linked to some VP's for £60 ish. Once you count in shipping and stuff...

You can spot a writer a mile off, they're the ones meandering in the wrong direction muttering to themselves and almost walking into every second lamppost.

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