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A Dialogue With The Lamy Dialog 3



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The tryst with fountain pens never ends. To add one of the heavier retractable ones in my collection, I had two choices - Fermo or a Dialog 3. And I went with the dialog 3 :) . Here goes a review for the same.

I have also replicated the content with some additional pictures in my blog as the image upload size is limited by this free photo-sharing tool and it re-sizes images to a thumbnail size after a short while. Below is a link to the same:

LAMY Dialog 3 Review

Motivation

A collection of fountain pens is never complete without the retractable ones in your armoury. And the ones which immediately strike an already covetous mind, are of course the Pilots (VPs, decimos and the fermos). Then there are pens like lamy dialog, visconti pininfarina among a few others each with a relatively small sized non-hooded nib. Somehow, the idea of yet another hooded nib became quite less appealing, when I saw the dialog 3. I knew it was quite a heavy pen of the capless clan, and so was the fermo. The Dialog 3 was launched by Lamy back in 2009 designed by one of the contemporary designers, Franco Clivio. The Lamy Pico is another pen by the same Swiss designer. As per LAMY, Franco innovates with basic shapes – circle, square and triangle foregoing anything superfluous in the process to achieve technical necessity.

As you would have already discovered, there is no dialog 1 or 2 in fountain pens. Dialog 1 refers to a ball-point pen whereas Dialog 2 is a roller-ball pen, and they belong to different designers.

 

Presentation (6/6)

How do you ensure minimalism with luxury? By establishing extravagance incrementally in little steps. A paper sleeve encases a much more attractive black cardboard box etched with the LAMY logo. With the usual papers and a cartridge outside, a thin sheer cloth then encloses a beautifully polished gift box made out beech wood, with a magnetic closure.

 

http://s25.postimg.org/q3eu0za5r/d3_001.jpg

 

http://s25.postimg.org/ml2u4l99r/d3_003.jpg

 

The beauty of the beech-wood box is that it’s alluringly small enough to slip inside your pocket, the pen still dreaming inside with a soft cushion under her head. PS: It could be heavier than your cellphone with the pen inside.

http://s25.postimg.org/67iulft4f/d3_004.jpg

 

Design (6/6)

A twist-action fountain pen with an advanced design, it comes with two variants – matte-black and palladium finish, with six nib sizes – EF, F, M, OM, B & OB.

 

The silvery palladium finish with chrome polished clip reflects its immediate environmental colours. An etched pair of parallel lines running along the barrel & grip pieces represent the final nib retraction point, when in sync. LAMY is etched between the lines at the end of the barrel. Half-a-twist clockwise from the barrel top-end will open a ball-valve at the nib end of the grip and the nib extends to a click-stop, keeping the pair of parallel lines at diametrically opposite ends. Anticlockwise, post the parallel sync, the barrel can be unscrewed from the grip+clip section, to take out the nib + filling system. There might be an odd slippage in the twist mechanism, but once I tightened the barrel and grip section, it did not occur again. Simply Elegant!

 

http://s25.postimg.org/n0e3xlv73/d3_006.jpg

 

A chrome ball-valve at the nib-end of the grip section protects the nib from damage of dust and drying-out, acting in sync with the twist-mechanism. Secondly, the clip lifts and rescinds with the twist to either facilitate an easier grip or enable clipping it on your pocket.

 

http://s25.postimg.org/ux36jkw1b/lamyd3mech.jpg

 

From the aesthetics of design, the dialog 3 is really majestic.

 

Filling System (6/6)

The sum of parts for me is greater than a whole. It’s fun taking the pen apart, because it’s meant to. Once the barrel is unscrewed anticlockwise beyond the synced parallel lines, it separates out to reveal the nib & fill system. The nib/fill system can be unscrewed anticlockwise from the grip section. You will find a standard Z26 converter fitted into the nib section. Again like the 2000, the design elements are so fluidic in both nature and function. The standard capacity is around 0.7-0.8 ml for the Z26 converter as per FPN reviews.

 

http://s25.postimg.org/pcqp8xx67/d3_007.jpg

 

Once you fill her up, you can put the pen together and then there is of course the :cloud9: wow moment.

Nib (6/6) – All that matters

The 14k two-tone nib comes in four standard sizes (EF, F, M, B) and two special sizes (OM and OB). Elegantly, designed although in a modern fashion, the white rhodium decor occupies the tines and the tail parts of the nib, while a golden streak runs from the breather hole and diverges itself at the tip end of the nib. Embossed near the tail end are the usual specs of nib size (F), content - 14k-58.5% and of course the LAMY logo.

 

http://s25.postimg.org/52tdtsw1b/d3_009.jpg

 

One thing I did observe, is the difference between the tipping sizes of 14k-fine nibs of lamy - a lamy 2000-F in this case, which is in my current rotation. Though, the 2000 had its nib replaced with a somewhat older-service stock of Fine nibs, you can clearly see the difference between their tipping sizes, even without using a loupe. I am also told that a recent lamy 2000 fine nib may have a similar tip. FPNer maverink can confirm this, since we had bought the pens quite recently (an he went with an F).

 

Physics of it (4/6) – relatively speaking

A cylindrical body with a 1.3 cm diameter having around 50 grams of weight, might seem to be a somewhat heavy proposition to wield it as a pen, rather than a weapon. The length of the fully extended pen is similar to a posted MB146. Taking these into account, this pen might not be comfortable for extended writing sessions. However, as far as short note taking sessions or signatures are concerned, believe me it could be a dream to write with. The illusive weight, the copious flow and the buttery nib will ensure a silky glider.

 

Retracted Length ~ 13.8 cm
Extended Length ~ 15.7 cm
Nib Leverage ~ 1.8 cm
Weight ~ 50 g
http://s25.postimg.org/pkec5g84v/lamyd3compare.jpg

Economic Value(4/6)

With a street price of USD 250-260, it falls right into a category where you would probably think thrice or may be more, before buying the pen. There is always some discount running on MRP of USD 385 in local stores, which brings the price closer to the street price.

Overall (5.3/6)

A flawlessly efficient pen as far as the vital parts of the pen are concerned. It has never skipped and all the twist mechanisms operate with a firm intent of functioning. The d3 fine nib is a stiff one and it lays a broader line than a 2000-fine. A wet and intense line, it gives the paper 15 secs, to dry itself, each time it writes. Line variation between horizontal and vertical strokes seems non-existent.

 

A pen to go for if you wish to have a retractable one with one of the smoothest nibs

 

http://s25.postimg.org/9pzfvkje7/d3_0145.jpg

 

I hope you enjoyed the review. :) Thank you for your time.

 

Best,

Sonik

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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Well written review. So, you've not experience any drying out of the nib? I had read the early models had problems with the closure, later fixed. I was afraid to get one, worried I might end up with an "early" version and not the corrected one.

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Well written review. So, you've not experience any drying out of the nib? I had read the early models had problems with the closure, later fixed. I was afraid to get one, worried I might end up with an "early" version and not the corrected one.

 

Thank you, doggonecarl. Luckily enough, I did not face any problems with drying out of nibs (post 24 hrs) even with relatively dry inks - pel 4001. Guess, then it must be a newer model.

 

Best,

Sonik

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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Great review of intriguing pen. I've been thinking on and off about getting this one. I need to try it first somewhere.

Thank you visvamitra. Guess, it would be better to have a feel of weight and grip, before buying. Design wise, it's pretty attractive though :)

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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Nice review; thank you.

Sorry if I missed it, but what ink were you using in the 2000 (f) that you used as a counterpoint to the Dialog3?

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Nice review; thank you.

Sorry if I missed it, but what ink were you using in the 2000 (f) that you used as a counterpoint to the Dialog3?

Thank you stephanos. I could not find that too :P

 

lamy 2000 - F - MB Toffee Brown

dialog 3 - F - pelikan 4001 green

pilot ch91 - FM - sailor sky high (the little blue ink)

 

IME, MBTB is a wetter ink compared to Pel 4001 green.

 

Best,

Sonik

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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I bought an early model which always ran dry despite the ink.

I eventually gave it to a friend who craved it

Ah! I guess it was a major problem with the older model.

Do you see any outer design changes apart from the internal valve thing-adjustment in this version compared to the older model?

 

Best,

Sonik

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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Nice review and wonderful photos. I'll have to try this one out.

 

Thank you prime.lens. Guess a feel of the weight and grip is very necessary before buying this pen.

 

Best,

Sonik

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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nice pen, well written review, love the pics you might want to do a shootout with the pilot VP or decimo

Pilot custom heritage 74 all nibs, 742 Fa and PO nibs, 823 F 92 F,M, 3776 FM,EF,1911F

And all indian pens

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nice pen, well written review, love the pics you might want to do a shootout with the pilot VP or decimo

Thanks maverink. Wanted to have a look at the width your lamy2k - F nib writes. I feel it will be a bit wider than my replaced l2k - F nib.

We will decide on the VP thing on Saturday wen we meet :)

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

 

 

maverink, hari, do the VP 18k medium nibs run this wide? (I have resisted getting a VP for quite some time :), since it was pilot pilot all around :P )

You have come to earth to entertain and to be entertained - P.Y

 

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graystranger

maverink, hari, do the VP 18k medium nibs run this wide? (I have resisted getting a VP for quite some time :), since it was pilot pilot all around :P )

 

soniknitr,

 

I bought a Lamy 2000 in F in 2013 and have been using a Pilot Vanishing Point in M since 1999. The Pilot M is finer than my Lamy 2000 F. Both are wonderfully smooth nibs, I rate them equivalent in that respect. Both nicely wet writing. But the Pilot M is closer to most European F nibs, and my Lamy 2000 F was between a European F and M. I have a Waterman F and it is very close to the Pilot M nib, maybe a little bit finer, but not much.

 

My Lamy Al-Star EF nib is similar to the Pilot M nib.

 

So impressed with my 1999 Vanishing Point (used daily now for close to 16 years, like new, perfect for me in all respects), I bought the 2014 Copper Limited Edition Vanishing Point. I also have 5 Vanishing Point nibs: EF, F, M, M, B. You can purchase a VP nib assembly now for $55 from Goulet Pens in any of the four nibs in 18k gold. They have rhodium plated, black finish, and yellow gold. I switch nibs back and forth, but usually keep one with the F and one with the M with me.

Eschew Sesquipedalian Obfuscation

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