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I have talked about the Deccan Advocate before. I’ve also talked about how great of an experience I had buying my first Deccan Advocate. Here’s a much more critical review, having bought 2 more Advocates since my first. The brown one was bought in 2017, olive in 2018, and the teal in 2020.

 

Design and Appearance: 

The Brown and Olive rippled ebonite Advocates are pretty much the same. Slight variations have crept in, but that’s understandable since they’re hand turned, likely without any calipers. The olive one also has a cap band, which was later scraped in the next editions.

 

But the teal ebonite one has been redesigned. Why, I don’t know. Maybe a new penmaker? Anyway, this one is slightly bigger, and without most of the subtle curves that make up the previous Advocate. They’ve also moved the section flare up by a few millimeters, and that does bother my grip. I consider the previous Advocate one of the best Indian pen designs, but the new one is trash, in my opinion. It’s lost its almost perfect design. YMMV.

 

50817981226_f991a30afa.jpg 

 

 

Quality and Construction:

No complaints here, all three pens feel solid. The teal one does feel more substantial because of the larger and girthier size. Quality of the materials used is decent. Indian ebonite feels solid, but it definitely lacks the refinement of Nikko and SEM ebonite. You can see random pits, discolorations and flecks of other colors. Some like this sort of inorganic trait. To me, its okay. You get what you pay for, is the best way I can put it.

 

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Finishing: 

Ah, here’s where things go for a ride. The brown one was decently finished, had a few lathe marks and unpolished spots. The olive was beautifully finished. I’ve sanded and polished both these pens, so the finish you see in the photos isn’t what you’re likely gonna get. The teal one was horrible though. Heavy lathe marks, irregular finishing, and just terrible overall. To get it to a smooth polished finish would be too time consuming, considering I have to sand these by hand without any power tools and my buffing wheels are back in India. So I just gave it a brushed finish. So this is something you’ve got to keep in mind if you’re considering getting an Advocate now.

 

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Writing and Writing Comfort:

All three of my Advocates have Kanwrite nibs paired with Indian ebonite feeds. Kudos to Kanwrite, these nibs are stellar. I’ve faced some inconsistency issues with Kanwrite nibs before, but the ones on these pens are great. All three are decently smooth with some tactile feedback. They also have good flow. I’ve inked the brown Advocate (M) with Daytone Extra Fine Scarlet, olive Advocate (EF) with Camlin Blue old batch, and the teal with Dayton EF Bottle Green. All three pens are eyedropper only.

 

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Takeaways:

The price one pays for these pens is acceptable. The old ones were really inexpensive. The ones sold now are almost twice the price, but the design change is a bummer for me. But what’s total BS is you never really know if you could get these pens. Unless you visit their store in person, or get someone in Hyderabad to get one for you (there’s still no guarantee you’d get the pen you wanted), there’s really no way you would get one like you’d get a Ranga, ASA or Lotus. They don’t take commissioned pieces (not that I know off) and have a non-existent online presence.  

 

Would I buy any more of these? The old ones, yes. They’re well balanced for me, kind of the perfect girth and proportions for a pen with a #6 nib. The new ones, no. But they’ve got a few made in this woodgrain ebonite that isn’t in production anymore, so I’m eyeing one of those, though it’s the redesigned version. 

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Reading your review... I think your 2017 one... I wanted to get an advocate, but at that time I think their lathe machine had broken down or something. Reading this review I doubt I want to get one.... Not as good as the old one and twice the cost 😕

Thanks for the heads up..

 

Also your finishes are great! 

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I thought advocate were priced heavily earlier and has come down now. I do have a mottled brown advocate, no complaints at all. 

I heard woodex company make similar pens with lesser cost. May be worth trying. 

 

The market for Indian pens is consistently booming. Despite the ambitious and kanwrite nibs, indian feed and nib industry needs a lot of quality checks. Similarly, Indian eyedroppers with ebonite feed has not received any serious attention to optimize the flow or to prevent the burp. 

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On 1/12/2021 at 1:38 PM, Yohaanrods said:

Reading your review... I think your 2017 one... I wanted to get an advocate, but at that time I think their lathe machine had broken down or something. Reading this review I doubt I want to get one.... Not as good as the old one and twice the cost 😕

Thanks for the heads up..

 

Also your finishes are great! 

 

The 2017 one is the best of the bunch. Feels the most comfortable in the hand and was well priced too. I really wouldn't get one now though. A shame, because I was of the opinion that these were the most comfortably designed Indian pens.

 

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On 1/13/2021 at 5:48 PM, hariharan said:

I thought advocate were priced heavily earlier and has come down now. I do have a mottled brown advocate, no complaints at all. 

I heard woodex company make similar pens with lesser cost. May be worth trying. 

 

The market for Indian pens is consistently booming. Despite the ambitious and kanwrite nibs, indian feed and nib industry needs a lot of quality checks. Similarly, Indian eyedroppers with ebonite feed has not received any serious attention to optimize the flow or to prevent the burp. 

 

The person who runs Woodex, Mr Narasimha, makes or made pens for almost all the pen shops in Hyderabad. His own pens now have a similar design and good pricing too! 

 

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Good review.  I liked the writing experience and comfort of the Advocate. But, the recent price increase makes it expensive. 

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3 hours ago, dinuraj said:

Good review.  I liked the writing experience and comfort of the Advocate. But, the recent price increase makes it expensive. 

What’s the current price? 

In case you wish to write to me, pls use ONLY email by clicking here. I do not check PMs. Thank you.

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On 1/15/2021 at 8:46 PM, Aditkamath26 said:

 

The 2017 one is the best of the bunch. Feels the most comfortable in the hand and was well priced too. I really wouldn't get one now though. A shame, because I was of the opinion that these were the most comfortably designed Indian pens.

 

Hello Adit, the advocate has been continuously evolving. I became acquainted with the model in 2004 or so and I have seen it evolve.  It must have been evolving prior to that also. I and Jai made some posts on the evolution of the advocate that we could document. You have documented further evolution. May the advocate and Deccan live for ever. 

In case you wish to write to me, pls use ONLY email by clicking here. I do not check PMs. Thank you.

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On 1/17/2021 at 8:20 AM, dinuraj said:

Good review.  I liked the writing experience and comfort of the Advocate. But, the recent price increase makes it expensive. 

 

Thank you :)

 

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On 1/17/2021 at 11:30 AM, hari317 said:

Hello Adit, the advocate has been continuously evolving. I became acquainted with the model in 2004 or so and I have seen it evolve.  It must have been evolving prior to that also. I and Jai made some posts on the evolution of the advocate that we could document. You have documented further evolution. May the advocate and Deccan live for ever. 

 

Both your articles were really interesting and are what prompted me to get the Advocates in the first place! :)

 

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