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Yiren 3156 - Not Quite What I Was Expecting...



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Yiren 3156 – Russet Brown version

Standard disclaimer first: I received this pen from Kevin at JustWrite Pens (www.JustWrite.com.au), in return for an impartial review. I initially wasn’t going to put up a post about it, because it just didn’t ‘grab’ me – but figured others might benefit from the review regardless, even if it’s not entirely favourable. I’m also doing this because Kevin stressed that he’d rather I didn’t “pull my punches”, by only reviewing the pens I can wholeheartedly recommend. So here it is, the Yiren 3156 – I won’t be scoring this out of 10, just trying to give you a clear idea of what you’re getting if you buy this pen.

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1. Appearance & Design – A lovely looking pen, until you uncap it… (!)

When I received my shipment of pens for review from JustWrite (most of them valued under AU$20, though a few were priced in the $40s and $50s, and one was valued at $105!), this was one of the pens that immediately caught my eye. There’s something about the colour that I really like – a kind of warm ‘russet’ brown, almost a reddish-brown, with gold accents that blended in nicely. I really wanted to try it out… Until, that is, I removed the cap of the pen. It was one of those, “Oh, that’s not quite what I was expecting” moments. Under the cap, I found a chrome-accented grip section, with a hooded nib. Matching gold colour would probably have looked better – though I suspect that the chrome / stainless steel will be less susceptible to corrosion with use – but that wasn’t the main concern. The diameter of the grip section is seriously small – with a significant ‘step up’ to the barrel.

http://i.imgur.com/sSIzFIr.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/IMJil3Z.jpg

OK, OK, I’m probably overstating my reaction – I was surprised, rather than disappointed. And I actually quite like hooded nibs on my pens, as I find they tend to be finer writers, and less prone to drying out than for other pens. So in itself, this is not a deal-breaker.

2. Construction & Quality – Seems solidly built, and durable

Overall the pen is well-designed, composed mostly of metal and plastic. There are no obvious blemishes or flaws, and (as indicated above), I think the colour of cap and barrel go nicely with the trim. The clip is sturdy, and will hold well in a pocket. The grip section threads securely into the barrel, and the slip cap ‘clicks’ securely into place.

3. Weight & Dimensions – A typical ‘mid-sized’ pen – at least outwardly!

This is another ‘mid-sized’ pen, that weighs in at around 34g (including converter). It’s 141mm when capped; 116mm uncapped; and 161 when posted. It posts reasonably securely, too, though you wouldn’t want to ram the cap on too hard!

The main ‘problem’ with this pen is the grip section. While the diameter of the pen barrel sits at a comfortable 11.5mm, that ‘steps down’ to around 9.5mm. The section also boasts three ‘facets’, though (see below), which probably reduce the ‘effective’ diameter (in terms of pen grip) to maybe 7mm.

4. Nib & Performance – A smooth, fine nib, that writes nicely – the grip section is the problem here!

Inked up with Visconti Sepia Brown, this pen laid down a fine line, and wrote very smoothly. I really enjoyed that aspect of the writing experience. My main problem with this pen, though, is with the grip. Because the grip section is comparatively narrow – and maybe because it’s metallic? – I find myself having to grip tighter than I’m accustomed to. To make it worse, the grip is ‘faceted’ to accommodate a tripod grip. Not sure how to describe it any better than that – hopefully the pictures will make it clear what I mean! This made the ‘effective’ diameter of the grip even narrower. From that point of view, my children might find this pen more comfortable to write with – for me, it was a bit of a strain. Maybe I could TRAIN myself to hold the pen more loosely? But after a page of writing, I was beginning to feel a bit of cramping in my fingers and hand…

http://i.imgur.com/vm1a8ZZ.jpg

5. Filling System & Maintenance – A standard cartridge/converter pen

To give the Chinese manufacturers their due, more often than not their pens are designed to take standard international cartridges – and come with a cheap cartridge converter (Hero is the main exception on this score). The Yiren came with a ‘slider’ converter – I normally prefer the ‘twist’ type converters, but this converter operated smoothly and worked well – so full points on that score.

http://i.imgur.com/gy807GO.jpg

6. Cost & Value / Conclusion – An inexpensive pen – but won’t be everyone’s cup of tea

Priced at around AU$20, this pen won’t be everyone’s cup of tea – there are other pens that are better value for money, especially (for example) the Baoer 388, or the new Jinhao 599s. If you like hooded nib pens, though – and don’t mind the smaller grip section – this pen could be for you.

Edited by Jamerelbe
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richardandtracy

Thanks for the review, it's a pen I'd not seen before.

 

I have to say that of the few Yiren's I've tried, they have been very ordinary, as was also found with this one.

 

Yiren & Bookworm are different brands produced by the same company, frequently using parts with the other brand name on them - rather careless I think. I feel that reflects how much care they put into other parts of the pen too.

 

Regards,

 

Richard.

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Thanks for the review, it's a pen I'd not seen before.

 

I have to say that of the few Yiren's I've tried, they have been very ordinary, as was also found with this one.

 

Yiren & Bookworm are different brands produced by the same company, frequently using parts with the other brand name on them - rather careless I think. I feel that reflects how much care they put into other parts of the pen too.

 

Regards,

 

Richard.

I also have a Bookworm pen to review, which seems much better proportioned. Certainly the shame of things with THIS pen is that it has such a narrow grip, relative to the body of the pen. I think it's the severe step down that makes it so awkward (for me) to grip it comfortably... Edited by Jamerelbe
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Could you use a smaller image size as they took ages to load?

Thanks for the feedback - I tend to not adjust file size, partly because it allows viewers to see more detail, but also because I haven't worked out how to do so without a lot of hassle... Will take this on board, though, and see what I can do! Any suggestions as to optimal resolution or file size?

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But what did you think of the grip?

 

;)

 

Honestly, I have another (cheap Chinese) fountain pen - the Haob 3136 that has a similar, slender tripod grip - and the Hero 266 is pretty 'skinny', though no tripod - and I find them reasonably comfortable. So maybe it's not the grip on its own, but the grip in combination with the significant 'step up' to the barrel?

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