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Pelikan M200 extra fine - disappointed



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Evaldas

Hello, today I got my first ever Pelikan pen that I bought off Spanish Amazon (it had the best price at the time). It's a green marbled Pelikan M200 with an extra fine nib.

The first disappointment was that it came in this tiny box just for the pen itself, no gift box with the faux leather pouch etc. But then I went onto the Amazon listing once more and made sure to translate it and read it and sure enough it said it comes without the gift box so I guess that one's on me.

The piston mechanism felt very nice, the pen also felt made very nicely.

Then I loaded it with Pelikan's 4001 ink in Royal Blue and gave it a go. And oh dear was I disappointed. First of all, I realised that I in fact don't like the ink and can't believe people have nice things to say about it. It's so pale and dry. But for the pen, well it was a bit scratchy and the line was so thin like a japanese extra fine or maybe even finer. To describe the writing experience, it felt like I was trying to do reverse writing on a nib.

This is not what I was expecting at all after having watched multiple reviews, in the videos the extra fine writes more like a fine and it gives a nice juicy line which mine certainly didn't.

I just wanted to rinse the ink out of it, put it back into its crumpled little box and send it back to Amazon which I did - it's already on the way back.

I thought for a second that I could separately buy just the nib unit for another ~20 euros and see if another EF or even F nib would work better, but then I thought that I really don't want to spend more money on this than I already did.

So now I don't know what to do, I still want to own an M200 but I don't know if I got a dud and whether I should buy another EF and hope for the best or at least this time try the fine nib?

Also when I get the new one, I am so loading it with Noodler's Baystate blue - after trying it I don't really like other blue inks. At first with this Pelikan I thought "oh, well it's too nice of a pen to permanently stain it with BSB" plus I thought that since Pelikan's are know to be juicy it might work with the 4001 ink perfectly, but I was wrong so now I think I'm going to use BSB.

So yes, basically I'm looking for advice whether I should give another EF a go or should I try the F nib? Because what I wanted was a pen that wrote like a fine nib and I thought it would be the case with Pelikan's EF.

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mizgeorge

If you're looking for a European F nib, then you need to buy just that. If you want something comparable to a Japanese F, then you're after a European EF. I have a number of Pelikan EF nibs, and I'd say they were all exactly what they claim to be. I find that with all EF nibs there can be a tiny bit of initial scratchiness, but this writes out very quickly, especially with a well lubricated ink.

 

However if you're looking for an ink that will perform like Noodlers, you definitely don't want to be using Pelikan 4001 - which is a classic, slightly undersaturated 'school' ink, but is definitely on the drier side. I don't find Pelikan's narrower nibs need dry inks at all, but I know others prefer them. 

 

From what you've said, I suspect it was the ink that didn't work for you rather than the pen, and there are, of course, lots of choices on this one. Perhaps when you get your replacement pen (whatever that may be) you might like to try it just dipped, rather than filled, to help you work out how you feel about your ink choice - it's certainly a lot easier to clean up afterwards ;)

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A Smug Dill
40 minutes ago, Evaldas said:

But for the pen, well it was a bit scratchy and the line was so thin like a japanese extra fine or maybe even finer.

 

Unless the nib is uncharacteristically defective or have misaligned tines — so far my experience with Pelikan's M20x steel nibs has been more positive and consistent than with M40x gold nibs — I think perhaps you haven't written with quite as much Japanese Extra Fine nibs as I have. ;)

 

43 minutes ago, Evaldas said:

I thought that since Pelikan's are know to be juicy it might work with the 4001 ink perfectly, but I was wrong so now I think I'm going to use BSB.

 

Not all Pelikan 4001 ink colours are the same performance-wise. For what it's worth, I've used Pelikan 4001 Blue/Black (i.e. iron-gall) ink in my EF-nibbed M205 Blue-Marbled pen, and while it was never going to be a lubricating ink, it didn't write completely dry either. I much prefer Platinum Blue-Black (also iron-gall) ink, though, so that's what I usually put in that pen; and I've reground the EF nib on it to make it crisper and put down narrower cross-strokes.

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct for valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

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Evaldas

Thanks for your responses. 

I just went ahead and ordered an M200 with an F nib.

Basically, what I wanted was a pen that would draw a line just a tad thinner than the one procuded by a TWSBI Eco in F, but this Pelikan EF from today was like 3 times thinner than a TWSBI Eco fine. I really do believe the Pelikan might have been defective also I have noticed people criticising Pelikan's nib consistency quite a bit.

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Bo Bo Olson

Your nib sounded misaligned.....which happens even in the 'gift box', much less the cardboard box you got it in.

 

I state, most of the problems of misaligned nibs is caused by not having bullet proof mail boxes...........it is the contest between the robots and the postal workers who can kick the box the furthest, that knock the tines out of line.

 

Some say the QC at Pelikan is so P.Poor that they are off on coffee break when the pens that hundreds of complaints come through. The pen leaves the factory checked; and they know how to tweek.

Saw that at the Lamy factory.

 

Yet no one buys or even mentions such a dud in a B&M. I'll be going tomorrow, and bet the nib will be just fine on the new 200 I'll buy.

 

It is not just Pelikan but all online pens seem to have that  occasional misaligned nib problem.

Order a cheap Chinese 40X loupe, which is actually 10 X the minimum you need. So you can see which is the up nib.

You have to have one.

 

If the next nib is misaligned, or the one after, with your thumb nail at the breather hole and down the slit; press the Up nib down under the Down nib, hold 2 seconds do it 2-3 times and most of the time your problem is solved.

 

It is a common aliment caused by the mail. Those who disagree can't come up with why the pens in the B&M work with no nib technicians working there.

 

If you don't learn you will be sending back many pens that are not nails.

 

 

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

 https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,..Bock nib factory.

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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azur3s0ng
5 hours ago, Evaldas said:

The first disappointment was that it came in this tiny box just for the pen itself, no gift box with the faux leather pouch etc.

I got two M800 from Amazon Global Store UK, and they came in like this. I believe that's one of the reasons why the price is amazing.

 

5 hours ago, Evaldas said:

Then I loaded it with Pelikan's 4001 ink in Royal Blue and gave it a go. And oh dear was I disappointed.

4001 Royal Blue is the most boring one IMHO among the entire 4001 line up, also it's on the drier side. I would load it with Brilliant Brown or Dark Green if you are looking for just a little bit of wetter 4001s.

 

5 hours ago, Evaldas said:

But for the pen, well it was a bit scratchy and the line was so thin like a japanese extra fine or maybe even finer.

There is usually higher chance to encounter QC issue with Pelikan EF nibs from my experience (I have 15 birds, in both 400 and 800 size, both old style and modern, nib size ranges from EF to OB). But that doesn't mean you'll be guaranteed to have prefect nibs out-of-box with broader options. It's just the EF has a higher probability. Also the Pelikan steel nib is usually half or even one size narrower than their modern gold ones. That is to say a steel F writes more like a gold EF.

 

It seems a broader nib is going to solve your problem, which you already did. I have both steel nibs in EF and F, they produce subtle line width differences. So if a narrower line is one of the requirements, go with steel F. Otherwise steel M and B are also amazing choices!  Enjoy your new M200!

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Bo Bo Olson

Because Pelikan makes a dry ink, then make wet nibs.

Waterman made a wet ink to match their thinner nibs.

 

I like two toned shading inks, so stay away from saturated or supersaturated inks.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

 https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,..Bock nib factory.

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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maclink

I personally wouldn't recommend buying a Pelikan pen off Amazon.  I'd personally recommend purchasing from a dealer/reseller in the know, who takes the time to check the nib for problems before shipping.  Of all the manufacturers for whom I own several of their pens, Pelikan comfortably leads regarding the amount of times I've had to adjust the tines upon receipt because of varying degrees of misalignment.  Now I know that Bo Bo Olson swears by the theory of shipping leading to damaged or misaligned tines.  But I have to say that a pen within a gift-box, capped, that arrives visibly intact externally, will not have tine problems secondary to shipping.  I have bought only one of my pens while in a boutique.  All others have been shipped from various sellers, some International.  Others local.   Think on it Bo Bo.  The pen is first and foremost, capped in transit (nib protected), and as a consolation, further secured in a gift box (body protected).

 

I love my Pelikan pens.  I think they are really well made and are very reliable writers. My flock is now 8 and will likely grow since I'll soon go for the M20x with the Petrol finish.  Not to mention that I can now get custom grinds done before shipping.  However, I gotta make exception regarding the nibs and I do feel this has to do with the easy exchange, with dealer assistants quickly screwing or exchanging nib units and misaligning the tines while screwing nib units in place!  I have done this often enough to always check tine alignments after screwing back any nib in place, and I unscrew them with reluctance.

 

When I bought my Lamy 2k Steel version (57g's of pen) a few months ago, it came from Cultpens in a gift box, and to my amazement :yikes::yikes:, the pen had uncapped in the box (it's a slip cap) and was rolling around freely, EF nib exposed!!  I quickly checked the nib, assuming damage, but it was OK.   This was a first for me.  The value of the pen being capped becomes immediately evident.   When buying nib units, I'm always anxious about transport and happy to see that the seller also is as evidenced by the thoughtful measures taken to prevent nib damage during shipping.

 

I own many Japanese pens (Pilot, Sailor and Platinum), all shipped from various locations (nigh unto 30 of them).  I can't recall a single tine misalignment.  I find that truly remarkable and tend to recommend one to a new user.  Funnily, none, I recall have screw-in nib units that the producer expects the user to interchange.  

 

So if purchasing a Pelikan from Amazon, you may be happy with what you get or you may receive a pen with misaligned tines and it gives a scratchy writing experience.  Fortunately, with the aid of 10x-15x magnification, a tine misalignment may be easily remedied.

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chromantic

Sorry to hear about your bad experience. Every one of my new Pelikans has written beautifully out of the box except for the M200 Cafe Creme, it was like dragging a rusty mail across the paper. Same for the used ones I've gotten off ebay, all but one there, as well.

It's hard work to tell which is Old Harry when everybody's got boots on.

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Bo Bo Olson

I was at my B&M today, chatting with the owner, and he NEVER gets nibs from  the German Companies that have misaligned tines because they ship by small pallet.

 

So that leaves only the mail in in so called 'gift' which are display boxes or little cardboard boxes.

 

He wasn't online enough, in if business loss due to corona, don't pick up in the normal back to University or back to 'high school'  time in September, he'll have to shut down.:crybaby:

 

I know a goldsmith that trained first in East Germany on nibs as part of their basic goldsmith training, so I'll see about putting them together; he gave me his card for her.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

 https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,..Bock nib factory.

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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maclink
5 minutes ago, Bo Bo Olson said:

So that leaves only the mail in in so called 'gift' which are display boxes or little cardboard boxes.

 

There's one other theory.... exchange of nib units by the seller, without due care, leading to an unrecognised tine misalignment.

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Bo Bo Olson

How many times have you taken out your Pelikan nibs and put them back on, and they were misaligned?

 

I normally use two rubber squeeze bulbs, one cut wide to fit over the nib section, the other not, to flush out the pen.

I've never had a problem.............out side the time I banged a pen into the paper; was a bit more than slight...once. (A P-75 and of course I'd taken it down to the B&M to show how smooth it wrote!!):blush:

And that has nothing to do with a new pen that arrives with misaligned tines.

 

It is a family shop since 1876.

The women who there have been there for years, including the wife, so know how to change nibs. They are not low minimum wage 'what's a fountain pen' hires.

 

In  Germany there  are part time ...workers hired that pay no SS, nor taxes ...E-400 a month job........none of them would a family enterprise trust with an MB in their hand!! Or even a Pelikan 200, come down to it.

 

.....But normally Germany have a trained sales force, that spent three years as an apprentice, half day at business school, half day on the job; and have papers to prove it. So they are not the US (GB?)fly by night....20 jobs in five year hires.

 

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

 https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,..Bock nib factory.

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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maclink
2 hours ago, Bo Bo Olson said:

How many times have you taken out your Pelikan nibs and put them back on, and they were misaligned?

This has happened to me for sure and not only with Pelikan nibs.  This is why, as I said, I always check the tine alignment of my nibs after screwing nib units into place after exchange or very occasional removal for other reasons.  I have even received, on two notable occasions, nibs with misaligned tines where the act of unscrewing the nib unit realigned the tines and carefully re-screwing the nib unit back in place led to persistent proper alignment.  

 

I'm one of the incompetents at changing nib units. :P

 

This is why I personally give the nod to MB's approach where nib units are unscrewed with a tool.  You never have to hang unto the nib/feed and twist the section. 

 

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Bo Bo Olson

I've never had a tine alignment problem screwing my Pelikan nibs in and out......never even thought of it. Of course I go't go throwing them on the bathroom sink........or dropping them on my wooden desk. They are placed, not tossed.

 

Thought of making sure I was gentle when threading the nib section back on....so it wouldn't be cross treadled....never a problem there either (though one reads of the clack handed)....no way a nib problem.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

 https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,..Bock nib factory.

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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