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Waterman Carene Review


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The full review with pictures can be found on my new blog https://pentheon.wordpress.com/. I would be eternally grateful if people could provide me with feedback and constructive criticism and follow my blog. I will be posting weekly reviews of pens, inks and papers, next week is a review of Diamine Presidential Blue.

Many thanks.


The Waterman Carene was my first proper fountain pen. I’d had Lamy Safaris in the past but this was the first one with a gold nib, first one I a got a converter for and the first one that was over £20! This pen not only introduced me to the world of the higher end pens but also the world of bottled inks, which I truly have come to appreciate.


The Carene is a classic yet modern looking pen in the subdued “black sea” finish that I chose. There are certainly more extravagant ones available, the “Blue Obsession” model with the engraved gunmetal cap certainly springs to mind. According to Waterman, the Carene is modelled on a speedboat, presumably one that lives on the French Riviera. It’s a slim and relatively light pen, but is still heavy enough to feel solid in the hand, but then again I do prefer a heavier pen, I never really got on with the Safaris.

Fit, quality and finish

The cap is a pull cap, some disapprove of anything bar screw caps but I’ve never had a problem with it. The ‘click’ when the pen is capped is reassuringly solid. The rest of the pen follows this trend, there is a complete absence of rattling and it feels stable and sturdy in the hand.

Filling mechanism

The filling system is the standard cartridge and converter mechanism, indeed one can imagine how difficult it would have been for Waterman to fit a piston in such a slim pen. The standard long Waterman cartridges are very generous in capacity and the Waterman inks are varied and rather attractive. The Waterman converter is one of the better converters available, it has a generous capacity and is well put together.


The 14k inlaid nib is one of the standout features of the Carene. It is extremely smooth and the gold flows into the grip in a very attractive manner. The breather hole is on the underside of the grip, and this further contributes to the looks of the pen, the gold is smooth and uninterrupted. It’s unusual for an inlaid nib, but I’ve never got ink on my fingers. I chose the medium nib when I bought it, it is available in extra fine, fine, medium, broad and a stock stub. However I imagine finding the less ‘mainstream’ nibs might be quite difficult. The medium nib lays down a perfect line in my eyes, but do see the writing sample below.


The black and gold version that I bought was just over £100 and at the moment (2 January 2015) that version is available for £75 on Amazon UK. The more ‘interesting’ finishes are a bit more, but the dearer ones are only about £122. I think that around £100 is a brilliant deal for a piece of this quality.

Summary and conclusion

The Waterman Carene is one of my favourite pens and I highly recommend it to everyone who doesn’t already own one. The nib is excellent, the whole pen is very well put together and the design is very attractive. Some people might not like the absence of a screw cap and a piston but for this price those can be glossed over.

For in all things the woman is full of fear, not able to look upon battle or cold steel. But when she is

wounded over love no heart is more murderous.

Medea 263-266

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I really agree with the conclusion you gave.


Carene is a must have fp, especially considering the price for a gold smooth nib. I payed 119 euros, and i am happy I did.


One of my favorite pen.

Pelikan : M805 Souveran Black-Blue-Silver (F), Ductus 3110 (F), Classic Taupe M205 (F) Waterman : Carene Royal Violet (M) Faber Castell : E-Motion Croco Brown (F), Loom Orange (M), Ambition Rhombus Black (M) Pilot : MR Silver (M), MR Animal Mat Black Croco (M) Lamy : Safari Umbra Mat (M), Safari Black (M), Vista (EF) Pentel : Tradio Nature (M)

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Nice review!


Regarding the less common nibs: I believe that Waterman will, in a given country, replace a nib as long as it is in "as new" condition. So, if you buy a fine or medium and want a stub, for instance, you can just send in the pen for a nib swap.


And the stub is fantastic.

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Terribly sorry, Guernsey Tim you are right, I've just checked the nib and it is 18 carat...

For in all things the woman is full of fear, not able to look upon battle or cold steel. But when she is

wounded over love no heart is more murderous.

Medea 263-266

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