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What Chinese Pens Are You Using Today? 2018 + 2019



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just before Christmas, I was surfing one of those huge chinese online shops where you can find dozens of pens and dozens of different low priced offers for the same pens, which finally confuses you to the point that you lose track of all the open tabs and just before Firefox freezes for too many open pages, you eventually click one of the buttons in despair and get any one of the offers that looks decent and stays within the 4 $ selling price, and don't really care what happens...

 

This careless method sometime yields good results...other times not, but as long as it is not abused and stays within the 4 $ limit it's ok...

Today I am using one of the Chinese pens I got with this method, which for me is a very close hit, but no sigar (although the reason is totally personal, and possibly not due to Baoer, so could be a nice pen for someone).

 

The pen is a Baoer 051.

(I can anticipate, in contrast, that for example I am a very happy user of a Baoer 388, which is an evident copy of the Parker Sonnet, and all merit to Parker for a great design, the copy is really a fine pen).

The Baoer 051 is a copy of the Monteverde Impressa, there is a useful review on FPN here by ppdiaporama

https://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/topic/300899-baoer-051-review/

as always, Chinese manufacturers really can't resist temptation to copy someone else's ideas, and really do it with systematic diligence to the point that it's difficult nowadays to find a western pen (expensive or cheap that it may be) that hasn't yet been copied...

 

The Baoer 051 however really does look good and is therefore a good example of the improved manufacturing skills by Chinese pen producers.

The cap and bottom finial are chromed metal. The chrome finish is nice, smooth, without imperfections, and does look expensive.The clip has a lovely spring mechanism (Visconti like...) the barrel and section are black plastic which is shiny and feels good quality. The pen contains a decently looking converter (Lamy-similar), the nib is a steel Baoer marked nib which is a size 5 and is extremely smooth and is also extremely well behaved in terms of flow, so evidently the nib feed system is working well.

The cap is snap on, and the snap on works really well, not too loose not too tight, a huge improvement vs some previous nasty Chinese snap on caps that are simply impossible to uncap...

The weight is also very reasonable vs some previous Chinese pens, and despite the metal finial, the uncapped pen is reasonably well balanced. The cap posts but does not look very stable in place, which is no issue for me as I use all pens unposted.

 

The first flaw is evident when you unscrew the barrel, the threads are not precise and feel typically (of Chinese pens) gritty and wobbly when you unscrew. This flaw is however marginal as once the barrel is screwed on it stays in place.

The second flaw which is possibly not all due to Baoer is the step down section to barrel. The section is rather short, my fingers are all the time on the two sharply edged metal rings of the step down... ouch! I either hold the pen very close to the nib which is unnatural for me or after the step down, which is too far!

I don't have an Impressa to compare with, I have seen some pictures, the step down is there although it looks smoother on the Impressa...

 

fpn_1517267467__baoer-051-06.jpg

 

fpn_1517267597__baoer-051-09.jpg

 

 

 

all in all it's a nice looking pen and really does write well. The step down on the barrel with those sharp edges is really an issue for me, I cannot hold it for less than a minute without feeling discomfort, which is a pity.

 

 

I heard from some one but I can not verify that Baoer is another brand of Jinhao. Jinhao does not have its own design. Usually Sellers take a design copied from other brand to Jinhao saying that the type sold well, then comes Jinhao's new product.

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yes I have also heard that Jinhao and Baoer are just different brands of the same company, although possibly they used to be different companies time ago.

When Jinhao starts considering own design things may start to become even more interesting...

They are in that direction already, some designs are far from the originals now, so that it's not easy to recognize them

 

I am using this pen now, it's a Baoer, I do not recall the name of the model, cannot find it on sale anymore, although I bought it just a couple of months ago... what is this inspired by? (btw impulse buy this too...)

fpn_1516665221__p1140580-3.jpg

 

fpn_1516665526__p1140578-3.jpg

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Today I'm using a recently acquired Duke D2, like this picture from Duke's website:

 

http://www.dukepen.com/uploads/allimg/140507/1-14050G03R4.png

 

It posts securely, it's comfortable in the hand posted or unposted and, most importantly, it writes beautifully with a rather wet, smooth, medium line. Another winner to add to my small collection of Dukes.

 

Cost: 88 RMB which at current exchange rates is near as damn it £10.

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Stefan-Ionut-Marius

Wing Sung 9159




Wing Sung 9159 - It is a Fountain Pen with a classic nib .


Length 13 cm ,


Filling System - It is a C/C pen ,


Color - Transparent Resin barrel , section and cap .


Nib - A fine classic nib .


Ink - Pelikan 4001, Royal Blue .



post-134601-0-86192300-1517856732_thumb.jpg

I love Fountain Pens, with hooded nib in the classic style, Parker 51/61 type .



Ionut - Marius

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Today I got in the mail and inked up the last of my Chinese pens.

 

From top to bottom

 

Jinhao - 1200 - Smooth medium nib, good flow.

 

Wing Sung 3001 - Smooth, fine nib, but flow is a little slow

 

Jinhao 250 - Fine nib, smooth. Section was a little slippery though.

 

Jinhao 911 - Really smooth fine nib, good flow once is gets going (cartridge converter). This one wrote more medium than fine.

post-141191-0-19308900-1517870694_thumb.jpg

post-141191-0-26886700-1517870706_thumb.jpg

Edited by JayKay3000
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Stefan-Ionut-Marius

JinHao 950

JinHao 950 - It is a Fountain Pen with a classic nib .

Length 14,5 cm ,

Filling System - It is a C/C pen ,

Color - Barrel and cap : painted fine white Chinese porcelain with metallic chromed elements , with a back plastic section .

Nib - A fine classic nib .

Ink - Faber - Castell , Royal Blue .

post-134601-0-60740200-1517936960_thumb.jpg

I love Fountain Pens, with hooded nib in the classic style, Parker 51/61 type .



Ionut - Marius

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Dip n Scratch

Have the Chinese copied any models of Waterman fountain pens?

I have already seen those that look like Lamy, Parker, Monteverde & Pelikan pens.

I think that if you have a pen that is 'expensive' & by that I mean worth a weeks pay or more for you. It is likely not to get serious use in 'the wild'.

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I think that if you have a pen that is 'expensive' & by that I mean worth a weeks pay or more for you. It is likely not to get serious use in 'the wild'.

 

Wrong. If you spend $500 on a single pen in one year and use it all year it's not that big of an expense from that years pay. If that pen keeps for working for 10 or 20 years that $500 isn't a massive cost over that time.

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Today Im using my trusty smooth Bulow X750 (a rebranded Jinhao X750). Smoother than my TWSBI that Ive also used today.

 

post-139386-0-28190500-1518059968_thumb.jpg

 


Yes, this world of fountain pens is messy: ink will go where you dont want sometimes. Part of the deal.

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Dip n Scratch

It depends on what usage the pen will have. If I was needing a pen for work, where it would be intensively used... Well, maybe you wouldn't necessarily be using a Chinese pen. Not unless you kept spares in your desk drawer. I can see how spending that notional $500 on something really well made & reliable makes sense.

 

But I still like my Jinhao X750. It does what I want & if the thing croaked I would transfer the nib to another that is the #6 size.

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It depends on what usage the pen will have. If I was needing a pen for work, where it would be intensively used... Well, maybe you wouldn't necessarily be using a Chinese pen. Not unless you kept spares in your desk drawer. I can see how spending that notional $500 on something really well made & reliable makes sense.

 

But I still like my Jinhao X750. It does what I want & if the thing croaked I would transfer the nib to another that is the #6 size.

Or for the price of that really well made pen you could fly to China and pick up enough budget pens to last a lifetime and have a wealth of memories as well.

 

All pens are full of the same words waiting to be set free.

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Well, its more than just the mileage a pen made, but how that mileage are being made and what kind of maintenance / upkeep that one perform on is/er the tool itself. I know this might not be very apparent but a fountain pen is no more a tool like an automobile, or a Swiss army knife; the got used, they will require upkeep. Whether its a Rolls Royce, or a Hero, or a Gerber ... or ..

 

But the case of the Fountain pen is somewhat like the case of a folding knife. There are many economically priced ones; not because they are inferior , just that the technology is well known, matured and well executed even in mass production already. In short, leave out the branding the product by its feature and performance had only marginal difference and most of the cost ( other than the branding ) is in the detail final working of parts, for a knife, its the edge ; for the pen its the nib grind ( usually )

 

And in that regard, quite a large umber of Chinese and non Chinese pens, well known or not, brand or not, are just robust and will function well under proper maintained condition. Say a $5 pen like a Platinum Preppy , would likely still function as well vs say a $50 Lamy or a $500 Montblanc. I have in my pen cache pens that I've regularly used for decades that outperform even new very expensive ones. The range from Montblanc to Stipula, to Pilot, and Hero, Wing Sung and some that are pretty unknown ( I've even got a Bic fountain pen that actually write very smooth but does not look the part by any mean ).

 

My experience is once one venture into this longevity question; its usually the user that need the scrutiny more than the pen itself. Even the best tool cannot function without proper maintenance, upkeep, tuning, and general care. The one fact we almost always forget is that in the past even such ho hum tools like a knife or a pen is cherished since good tool are hard to come by and usually expensive. Commercialization and making Commodity of all things common n life generally made us less keen on the user duty and it must be said these days many and most of us actually abuse our daily ware.

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Well, its more than just the mileage a pen made, but how that mileage are being made and what kind of maintenance / upkeep that one perform on is/er the tool itself. I know this might not be very apparent but a fountain pen is no more a tool like an automobile, or a Swiss army knife.

 

 

I’ve always wanted to go to Switzerland to see what the army does with those wee red knives. Amory

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I’ve always wanted to go to Switzerland to see what the army does with those wee red knives. Amory

 

Well, the current model the army buys is neither red nor wee: https://www.victorinox.com/global/en/Products/Swiss-Army-Knives/Large-Pocket-Knives/Swiss-Soldiers-Knife-08/p/0.8461.MWCH

STR:11 DEX: 5 CON:5 INT:17 WIS:11 CHA:3

Wielding: BIC stick of poor judgment (-3,-5) {cursed}

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Both of the pens I am using today were made in China.

 

One is a Jinhao x750, branded Bulow by Birmingham Pen Company. It tends to start wet and get drier as I make my way down the page, but I'm using it for meeting notes that nobody else will see, and it's interesting to use to test new inks, because I can see how an ink will behave in a wet pen and in a dry one without having to switch pens.

 

The other is a Monteverde Invincia Deluxe. I know it is made in China for Monteverde, but I don't know what Chinese company makes it and whether it has a close equivalent sold under a Chinese brand name. The Monteverde has a stub nib that I think is a rebranded JoWo.

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Let's see...

 

I'm v. disappointed with the Wing Sungs I've been using. All of them.

 

I have a Wing Sung 9130 inked up, but I won't be using this pen once the ink is out of it, until I can figure out why it writes so dry that it's torture to use. I have it loaded up with a sample of Noodler's Gruene Eel, and even that ink seems dry and skips like mad in this pen. So there's definitely something wrong with the pen. It was a gimme pen, so I don't feel like I need to keep using it once I empty it out this time. And I'm not all that enthused about getting to the bottom of what makes it write so poorly, either. Not when I have other cheap pens that write well.

I just emptied the Wing Sung 3008, a blue/silver .5 model. I liked it because it wrote beautifully... Until it developed a nasty habit of leaking from the metal ring of the grip section at odd times. Not good, but it's a $2.60 pen, so I guess I can't complain. Instead, I'll toss it and use the purple/silver or gold with gold trim version that I got at the same time. That's the beauty of a cheap pen. Order a few different ones, in case you get a dud.

 

I also just got through with a Wing Sung 659 Clear. It was writing fine, then suddenly it started having nib creep problems and the ink cap started getting huge splatters in it--without the pen being dropped.

 

So I'm not impressed with Wing Sung these days.

 

Jinhaos are working better for me. I have a Jinhao 991 inked up now with Pilot blue-black that goes to class with me. Writes a super-fine line that works well for taking Japanese notes, especially kanji. I prefer the Platinum 3776 for kanji, but taking a pen like that to a community college class is stupid. The Jinhao works perfectly well enough for that task and if someone swipes it, who cares? It was something like $1, so I don't care all that much if it disappears on me.

 

I'm also using the Jinhao x750 Shimmering Sands loaded up with a Nemosine broad nib and Apache Sunset ink, for goofing off writing tasks. Normally, I use this pen for my shimmer inks, but I knew the AS sample I got from...somewhere...would need a broad nib to make the ink really shine. This pen is always loaded with something, and I use it all the time, because it never lets me down. A cheap, and super-reliable pen like this is gold to me.

 

I have a few new Chinese pens that I haven't test-driven yet, but that I keep meaning to get around to. Maybe I'll load one up this weekend.

Edited by Aquaria
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Hi Richard, drying out has always been a problem with Jinhao the reason is I think the convertor which causes the problem,change it or give it a good Flush out. This was the part of the pen

that users complained about most when I used to Edit the pages for Jinhao and Baoer. Trust Me.

oneill. I have been giving out the same Flush advice for years A very small amount of Amonia

with good clean water, I use distilled plus a Tiny drop of Dishwash liquid usually does the

trick.

 

Even after a good flush (or two or three), this 911 pen still writes super-dry.

 

I wound up giving mine away to a friend who's a professional artist. He had a need for that super-dry factor for some of the applications he needs for client artworks, so he's happy with the pen. He did say he couldn't imagine writing with it because it's too dry for that, but that's the difference between artists and writers. What is aggravating to a writer can be someone else's nirvana.

 

To each their own, I guess.

Edited by Aquaria
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That's good to know it's not plastic pretending to be wood.

 

 

You are correct. Shorter and thicker.

 

-----------

 

Todays pen is the Luo Shi x58e - I'm not sure that's it's exact model and I never used this brand before.

 

The pen came with a line of gold paint along the barrel and just about one of the smoothest cheap pen nibs I've used yet. It's a fine, but it really does glide. This nib is almost better than my parker 75 and my 75 is super smooth.

 

The grip really does help keep your fingers in place without being sharp. Good flow, started in half a line. Jinhao produce a very similar pen than costs a lot more.

 

I don't know what to say. I wasn't interested in this pen and it's almost one of the best writers I own now. Shocked for $2.50. I know the finish isn't perfect. I just hope more have had this good a finish on their nibs. It glides soundlessly without effort. It's how I'd expect a $100 pen to be.

 

I ordered what the seller on EBay called a "You 291" fountain pen. When you get the pen, though, it very clearly says Luoshi on it for the brand.

 

Anyway, I had the same experience of being shocked at what a good writer it was. It's by far the best-writing Chinese pen I own, or the best thus far. I still have some other pens to test drive, but I really--really--love the way that one writes. I don't have it inked write now, but that's because I'm trying to test out other Chinese pens I have before going back to it. I keep comparing every pen since then to it, and it's still the one I like the best.

 

Seems that they really do their nibs just right for my tastes.

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