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Lotus Excel: Jina Fountain Pen Review



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The Indian Fountain pen industry has had a very long,lustrous and prestigious history. For an Indian Student,your first Fountain Pen was invariably Indian Made. Usually made of ebonite, Eye-Dropper and Indian made generic nibs. And oh the universal "feature" of Ink Burps and leaks. Unfortunately I was one of those students who waited impatiently till 8th grade when we were allowed to use Ball pens. Please forgive my ignorance of childishness.
Recently I was contacted by Mr.Arun Singhi of Lotus Excel Pens about his new line of Fountain Pens with premium materials. Some standout features of their Lotus Excel line of Fountain Pens are:
  • Japanese Nikko Ebonite: Which provides mirror finish without any additional coatings/treatment.
  • International Standards of craftsmanship.
  • Interchangeable nibs ie. JoWo in the case of the Jina.
  • Unique out of the box designs: Symmetrical "Zeppelin" design in case of the Jina,while at the same time maintaining 50/50 balance.
  • High quality trims: 18k Gold plated trims on the Jina.
  • Lifetime Guarantee.

I guess its time to get into Indian Pens again.

 

Presentation:
The Pen comes in a Functional clam shell case with the Minimalist Lotus logo on the box. The Pen is stored in a velvet pen couch with draw strings.
I like these boxes as they can act as storage for at least 3 pens.
The Velvet string pouch can also be used as everyday carry.

 

20157419_10154494710991008_3684100610658

 

Construction:
The first thing you notice with this pen is the perfect,near mirror,glossy polished surface of the pen. Mated with the strikingly gold plated appointments: the Split Nib,cap ring and cap band, there is a very pleasant contrast between the ebony and the gold.
Overall the pen has a tapered torpedo shape with smooth flowing lines,all the trims being flush with the body. The Split Clip is reminiscent to some nibs from Waterman. It is spring loaded and has good tension.Below the Clip is a golden circular band. At the end of the cap is a broad gold plated band,which is at the exact middle of the pen. This gives the pen a very pleasing visual balance. The barrel of the pen is plain and tapers down.
The cap unscrews with 2.5 turns and does not have the typical Ebonite on Ebonite screaching feel. The section is very comfortable in width and length and ends with a lip towards the nib. The cap screws are very low profile and do not cause any discomfort when gripped.There is about 1mm of step up from the section to the barrel.The section unscrews in 2.5 turns and again,very pleasent turns. The pen accepts International Cartridges and Converters. I havnt tried it but I think the pen can be used as E.D too.
In the hand,the pen has a very balanced feel and comfortable unposted. The pen can be posted but becomes very unwieldy and top heavy.
20139996_10154494710836008_6399461790404

 

 

Specifications:

Material : Japanese Nikko Ebonite

Total Length : 155 mm

Length without cap : 135 mm

Total Weight : 24 gms

Weight without cap : 11 gms

Schmidt Converter

Nib: Fitted with C/C type Gold Plated Jowo # 6. Available in F/M/B

16106049_10154494710701008_5035204436792

Size Comparisson: Sailor Pro Gear II, Mont Blanc 149, Lotus Excel Jina, Lamy 2000.

20108402_10154494710696008_6043869125810

Writing:
My pen came with a #6 Jowo in Medium and it wrote as well as any smooth,wet Jowo Nib. No flow issues noticed out of the box. Maybe the nib was checked before being sent out?
The Little Things:
  • Its really hard to believe that this material is just Polished Ebonite. It can easily be mistaken for resin. I cant wait to see more colors in this material.
  • I really like the Symmetrical design of the pen.And its a design that works functionally as well as aesthetically.
  • The low thread count for the cap and section is a welcome change compared to other Indian Pens.
  • Quality of threads:The amount of sheen in the material is maintained over the threads too!
  • Wide selection of nibs as these pens accept JoWo Nib Units.
Conclusion:
Its good to see New Indian Pen Manufacturers venturing into the scene and more so with such strong products like the Jina. The quality of materials,craftsmanship,product aesthetics and Service is a breath of fresh air for not only Indian Buyers but International as well. I feel Mr.Arun Singhi of Lotus Excel Pens has hit a home run with the Jina and things can only get better from here.
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prashant.tikekar

Thanks for this detailed reviw of a really well made pen. This is the pen that I liked the most in Lotus Excel series shared by Mr. Arun Singhi.

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Toozeen: this is a great review! I enjoyed reading your honest description of the past Indian manufacturer pens, re: additional "features" burps and leaks" and your colorful description of the Jina that you recently discovered. Continue reviewing pens, you're great to read!!!

Francois

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