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What A Nice Surprise

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I've been wanting for ages to getting hold of a Noodler's pen to fiddle with.

Now I have a Konrad in 'Narwhal'. I always intended it as a replacement holder for my Knox 1.1mm stub, but I left the flex nib in it to see how I liked it (it didn't last the day before I swapped it out).


I'd only seen pictures before and I thought it was quite a big pen, but it's actually a really nice size for me. The resin feels warm and 'soft' to the touch with just a little bit of drag when I move my fingers over it, nice, I don't mind the smell either. The quality of the finish is good for a pen of this price, can't complain about that.


From reports I'd read I was expecting to have to do some major tweaking to get it to write, but i just flushed it and filled it and away it went.

It flexed with firm pressure and wrote with just discernable variation with light pressure, but the nib wasn't doing anything for me so out it came.


The Knox went straight in and it wrote pretty well but there were hard start and skipping issues. I had a closer look and saw there was a gap between the nib and feed so I thought I'd try my hand at heat setting it. It was disappointingly simple, only took about 30 seconds (took longer to boil the kettle). Perfect, neat set, it hasn't skipped once since then and starts as soon as it touches paper.


The one thing I miss from the Jinhao X450 that the nib was in before is the sound. The nib used to make tiny squeaks and growls as it moved over the paper, probably because of the hard plastic feed with lots of fins. The sound added another level of satisfaction.

The X450 is actually a very good pen, very solid and reliable, but it's too heavy and cold for my personal taste. I've put the Noodler's flex nib into it so it might get some use (probably not though).


I have to say that I'm impressed by the Konrad, I think I'd get another one, or maybe an Ahab, but I'd probably spring for the ebonite version since I hear they're finished a bit better.


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