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First Pen Suggestions - Details Inside



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+1 for #1

Edited by Anirban4u

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Looking for: Camlin pens (minus SD/Trinity/Elegante)

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I'll echo the praise for the Pilot Metro. I've read so many positive reviews for it that when I made my way to a B&M store this week, I bought one. I've written with it for the past few days and it writes beautifully and feels comfortable in my hand.

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I'd get a Lamy. I picked up a couple of Safaris recently and they're great. I wouldn't get a Noodler's until you're happy with pulling out nibs and twiddling stuff until it works properly.

Better a witty fool than a foolish wit.

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:W2FPN:

 

+1 for #1, Pilot Metropolitan is such a great pen, required no maintenance or tinkering. I didn't even "pre-wash" as suggested by many here. I LOVE my Lamy Safari, but some people don't like the triangular grip section, so my suggestion would be to take a look at it for real somewhere before buying one. Plaisir is great as well, but given your financial constraints, #1 seems like the best option. Have fun!

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Non-Latin scripts never even crossed my mind :doh:. Good guess, and thank you!

 

I mainly write in English and my everyday handwriting resembles improvised italic. Sometimes I write looped cursive.

 

 

 

What would you recommend for loops that are narrow to the point of disappearing?

If you can go further afield than the Goulet's, Pilot 78G in F, it's a sturdy solid plastic pen that looks quite decent for the price ($10-$15) and the F nib writes about a .3mm line width. There's also the Pilot Penmanship, which is an EF nib that writes the finest line I've ever seen, it has some feedback (smaller nibs are more sensitive to paper) but the right ink takes care of that. The 78G comes with a converter (as does the Metropolitan), but the Penmanship does not.

 

If your handwriting is small, both the Metropolitan nor the Lamy Safari might not really work well (Lamy nibs tend to be broader than normal, maybe their EF would work). If you can save up for it, one idea might be putting a Penmanship EF nib into a Metropolitan body (the Penmanship looks a little weird), which is what I did and it looks quite nice and writes well (total cost: $9 for the Penmanship and $15 for the Metropolitan plus shipping came out to about $30 or $35).

 

Don't get the Noodler's pens, yes, they are cheap, but they are explicitly designed for people who want to repair and tinker with their fountain pen and the QC is not always the best, they're a terrible choice for a first pen. Chinese pens can be great, but they can also need a bunch of work (Chinese QC is not always good), so they are more like Fountain Pen 201 where a Pilot or Lamy would be FP 101.

 

I like Noodler's ink a lot and their regular Black is quite nice and easy to use. I also like the regular Pilot ink, their black is quite smooth and includes a bit of water resistance which is nice for notes.

 

One warning, the smaller the nib the more sensitive to pressure they are. I suggest getting a Pilot Varsity ($3 or so) to loan to people who want to try out an FP, and then you also have a backup in case you lose your other pen. Both the 78G and the Varsity (along with Pilot ink that works quite well) can be gotten from jstationery.com, I've ordered from them several times and always had a good experience. If you're stuck at Goulet's, I'd get the Metropolitan or the Lamy for now, and get some Noodler's Black and then any other samples you think look interesting.

Edited by WirsPlm
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Moshe ben David

I'll repeat what several have already said. That being go with the Lamy Safari (or if you have the money) the Pelikan 200. Pelikan 200 can be ordered from several on line retailers for just under $100 right now (in particular Fountain Pen Hospital and Fahrney's; I suspect there are others). The suggestion to have a set of Pilot Varsity on hand to 'lend' to family members who are not familiar with fountain pen use is a good one.

 

One of the posters above commented that with the Lamy Safari you cannot use Parker ink from a bottle. I have no idea why they said that; as long as you have a converter then you should be able to use any bottled ink. For example I have a Lamy Vista (the demonstrator version of the Safari); using the converter I only ink with Sheaffer Skrip red.

 

Welcome to our mutual obsession! This is only the start..... :rolleyes:

Moshe ben David

 

"Behold, He who watches over Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps!"

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The Pilot Metro is an absolute joy to write with; the Safari is functional, but the nibs are inconsistent. The Pilot is a bargain and would allow you to get more ink.

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I'd go with a Metro, plus some ink samples. I own You can get a surprising amount of mileage out of ink samples, especially since the Metropolitan's nib is fairly narrow; it doesn't burn through ink as much as some of the pens do. And the Metro is sturdy, reliable, not too flashy, and writes very very well.

 

If you really need the most bang for your buck, a bottle of Noodler's or Diamine will give you lots of ink at a reasonable price. I've had very, very good experiences with Diamine, and somewhat more mixed with Noodler's - it just depends on what you want. (That's why the ink samples are a nice start; a lot of ink I thought I'd like starting out were disappointments, while some of the outside chances turned out to be just perfect.)

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I forgot to mention the nibs.

 

The Pilot Meto has a Medium nib which measured 0.029 inch wide.

The Lamy F nibs measured 0.028 inch wide.

So the Pilot Metro M nib and a Lamy F nib are about the same size.

 

The Lamy EF would give you a bit thinner ink line, if that is what you want.

 

"What would you recommend for loops that are narrow to the point of disappearing"

I would recommend a Lamy EF nib or an Asian F nib.

But think about how you write and the pens that you use now.

  • If you have small and narrow writing then EF. If you have larger but narrow, you could use a F or EF.
  • What line spacing paper do you use; wide ruled 8.7mm, college ruled 7.1mm, narrow ruled 6.35mm.
    For me I use M or wider on wide ruled paper, F on college ruled paper, F or EF on narrow ruled paper.
  • If you do a LOT of number/math/formula writing, you may want a EF nib.

As for smoothness, my Pilot Metro is oh soooo smoooooth to write with.

 

One thing to think about is, the finer the nib, the more sensitive it is to the texture of the paper surface.

For my F nib pens (equivalent to the Lamy EF nib), I want/need a SMOOTH paper, as I do not like to feel scratchy vibrations coming up then pen.

I have notebooks that I am giving the nephew for his kids, because they feel too scratchy when used with my F nib pens.

The wider nibs are more tolerant of less than smooth papers.

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com

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For the money, I would go for the Pilot Metropolitan + a bottle of ink. My only concern about a brand new fountain pen user and the Metropolitan is that the converter that comes with it is a squeezie converter. That is, you give it a couple of good squeezes while the entire nib is submerged in the ink. This can be a bit awkward for someone new.

 

I'd pass on the Lamy because you can't get ink at the same time. I'd pass on the Noodler's because those can be fussy.

 

The Jinhao x450 is the one (well, two, if we're being honest) I have. It's a good pen and could also be a nice option for you.

 

Finally, I'd like to suggest that you stick with one of the inks that are known to be friendly to lots of pens and papers (I like Noodler's Black).

 

I hope you'll come back, let us know what you decided, and tell us how it went for you.

pentulant [adjective]: immodest or wanton in search of all things related to pens<BR> [proper noun]: Christine Witt Visit Pentulant<br>

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Wow, what an enabler I am! I didn't know this will be your first fp! Congrats!

 

The suspense is killing me here. :D

Scribere est agere.

To write is to act.

___________________________

Danitrio Fellowship

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GabrielleDuVent

The 78G, while it's a nice pen, has an odd tendency to make a mess on my hands if my finger even remotely brushes the plastic end (where the nib extends from). Would love to know how to fix this, as I often find myself in dismay after finding my fingers entirely black.

 

I hate the Pilot squeeze converter, as I never know how much is in it. It's fine if you use it everyday, but when you pick it up after leaving it alone for a week and find it skipping and not writing at all, you have to wonder if it's the pen or the ink reservoir. Pilot doesn't allow you to check the latter at a glance.

Tes rires retroussés comme à son bord la rose,


Effacent mon dépit de ta métamorphose;


Tu t'éveilles, alors le rêve est oublié.



-Jean Cocteau, from Plaint-Chant, 1923

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As your first ink, I would go with a Waterman ink of your color choice, probably blue, blue-black or black.

Waterman is a mid-priced ink, and it seems to be well regarded as a good flowing ink.

 

Getting ink samples is the best way to try an ink without spending for a whole bottle of it and finding out you don't like it.

 

But for your first bottle of ink, I would stay with a standard color that you can use for many things (blue, blue-black, or black).

Then later, you can branch out to other colors, if you want to.

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com

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Safari or Metropolitan!! :thumbup: + Waterman ink!

 

Most likely it will be one of those, plus ink. Never mind that the Safari goes over budget a bit. The Goulet site is absolutely wonderful. :D

 

Consider a Kaweco Sport

 

 

How does it compare to the Safari/Metropolitan, and what are the pros and cons of each?

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Yeah!!! Congrats on the first of probable many.

 

What color pen did you get? Did you also get ink or are you using the cartridge that came with it?

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If you could look at a different site, may I recommend the Sailor HighAce Neo from jetpens?

 

If not, I would say to go for the Pilot Metropolitan. The nibs seem more consistent than the nibs on my Lamy Safaris. As for ink, noodler's black is a good choice if you like black inks.

Some of my favourite inks are Sheaffer Turquoise, Sheaffer Blue Black (which has a really vintage look to it, if that makes sense), Diamine Monaco Red, Noodler's Red-Black, and Private Reserve Shoreline Gold (not recommended for every day use, just broader nibs or calligraphic nibs).

 

I would not recommend the preppy because it feels cheap in my hands (well, it is!) and I can't stand that, really.

 

OH! And qnother really cool thing about the cheaper pilot nibs is that they are interchangeable. So if you get a pilot penmanship in EF you can put that on the metro, or if you get a plumix, you can switch the nib with the metro. Same for the 78g nibs. All for (probably) cheaper than a new Lamy nib. So yeah. Go with the metro. Maybe another cheap pilot in another nib size if you can afford that and some ink.

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