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Two Jinhao X450's



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Summary: I review these two Jinhao X450's. One of them has Superscript-style bent nib and a black lacquered finish with blotches of red powder; the other has a normal fine nib and a solid black matte finish. They are heavier than usual, but look good and function well for their price.

 

 

http://i13.tinypic.com/67i8r2b.png

 

 

About the One in Black Lacquer and Red Powder

 

Body Appearance

This pen follows a classic cigar-shaped design. I suspect it appeals to the widest audience, and I'm okay with that, but if I really could choose, I'd prefer a more cylindrical shape, like Pelikan's Souverän series.

The lacquer on this pen is probably only one layer, definitely no more than two. Embedded in the lacquer are some blotches of metallic red powder, which is reflective, but not shimmery. From a distance, this pen would look solid black; at about 10 feet away, one would notice the red blotches. Below is a close-up of one of the blotches, made from a scanner.

http://i10.tinypic.com/4y8k3tu.png

It would appear that there is only red powder at the blotches. Actually, every inch of this pen is covered with the red metallic powder, but one can only see the red powder (besides the powder that forms the blotches) from less than a foot away.

There are two gold-plated steel bands on the cap: one where the clip attaches to the cap, and a thick band at the cap opening. "Jinhao" and "X450" are engraved on this band, with "Jinhao" centered next to the clip and "X450" opposite the clip.

http://i9.tinypic.com/6fj1p2p.pnghttp://i13.tinypic.com/641s17b.png

The clip itself is a two-tone, selectively gold-plated folded steel sheet. The plating quality is pretty good. There is only about a half millimeter of overflow on one corner of the steel-colored portion. Upon uncapping, one sees that there are two more gold bands, on both sides of the section.

 

Ergonomics

This pen is the same size as a Montblanc 146, but due to the brass body, it is very heavy. At 1.6 ounces total, and 1 ounce without the cap, it weighs twice as much as a 146, and more than triple a Lamy Safari. Some might have problems with this. I myself am not bothered by weight.

The section has three patches of ridges: one under the pen for the middle finger, and two on top for the index finger and thumb. These patches or ridges do not create any sharp corners on the section, so if one doesn't use a grip suggested by these patches, the section doesn't become uncomfortable (unlike the Lamy Safari, where one is forced to grip according to the section's shape).

This pen cannot be posted. The pen is long enough that most people would not need to.

 

Filling system

This uses a cartridge or convertor. A convertor is included with the pen.

 

Nib

The nib on this pen is selectively gold-plated steel, with gold inside and outside, leaving some exposed steel between the gold. The plating quality is inaccurate; it seems that the plating was shifted down and left a little. However, the plating eccentricity is only noticeable from close up. There are some ornate engravings on the nib along the exposed steel area. In the center, "Jinhao" and "18KGP" is engraved. (Like I care what the gold content of the plating is.)

The tip of the nib is bent up like a Sailor Superscript nib, and the tipping material is flattened. The vendor calls this a "calligraphy nib."

http://i12.tinypic.com/62r2k2e.png

At a normal writing angle, it writes like a normal fine point. As the angle of the pen is lowered, the stroke gets thicker. At the normal writing angle, I wouldn't call this a smooth nib. At lower writing angles, it feels too awkward to be practical. Below are writing samples. Both are made with Pelikan Brilliant Black. The first one demonstrates the increasing line thickness as the angle is lowered. The second one is my attempt to get fei bai out of this.

http://i9.tinypic.com/6h4rnug.png

http://i9.tinypic.com/62ne2gw.png

The ability to make fine and broad strokes from the same nib might be convenient, but I see no use for it. It doesn't emulate a brush very well either. There is no fei bai from this, unless it skips. This nib has a special place somewhere, but not with me.

 

 

About the One in Black Matte

 

 

Most of what applies to the lacquered X450 also applies to the matte one. Unlike the lacquered X450, the matte one has a textured surface, which repels fingerprints to an extent. The nib on this one is a normal fine nib, and the gold plating is much better, although not perfect.

http://i9.tinypic.com/4unx43p.png

The tip is as smooth as a post-Chartpak Pelikan, and I think that's smooth enough for most people. At first I found this to be a little too dry. All it took was some spreading of the tines, and it was perfect. Also, it took a little time for me to adjust to the long distance between the section and the tip; the nib is about an inch long. Below is a writing sample, made with Private Reserve American Blue.

http://i17.tinypic.com/5y2mt6a.png

 

 

 

 

About Both

 

 

These nibs are, of course, interchangeable. I'll probably never use the Superscript-style nib, but I can switch the other one between the bodies depending on how I feel.

 

Value

I found these two as a set on eBay for $23 plus shipping. Mmmmm…that's nice.

 

Conclusion

For the price, I have no complaints; except that the weight might bother some. There are aesthetic imperfections, such as the inaccurate plating, but those are only noticeable if one looks for them.

My vast collection now consists of 5 pens! (These two, Pelikan M620 Stockholm, Lamy Safari, Reform Skywalker) Either one of these Jinhao X450's nicely serves as an all-purpose pen (if I put the normal nib on it); I can take it anywhere without worrying about losing or damaging it. It wouldn't look out of place on a tuxedo either. This was the gap I wished to fill when I bought these. It is now nicely filled.

 

 

 

 

http://i15.tinypic.com/5yt8p6g.jpg

Edited by Renzhe

Renzhe

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Posted Images

Sorry, I don't get anything other than a red-on-black (IR maybe?) picture.

 

 

Wayne

"Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most." A. Brilliant

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Nice review. I recently purchesed one of these myself. The nib on mine is a bit too smooth -- I believe it is a broad. But it lays down a nice line of ink.

How about the clips on your two models? On mine it takes an act of congress to pull it away from the cap and the I haven't found anything it will slip over as there is just too much pressure.

Thanks again for the review.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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The clips are very tight. I could clip them on my jeans but nothing else. A little careful pulling and they were okay.

Renzhe

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I have a smooth black version of the second one, and I would add only that mine posts fine, and that it's a medium -- with a very nice level of flow. Just about the best Chinese pen I've found -- and I've used a dozen or so.

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Bought one on Ebay yesterday, $10.00. For that price I'll give any pen a try. Can't wait to get it.

I use a fountain pen because one ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to write a few reasonable words with a fountain pen.

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Bought one on Ebay yesterday, $10.00. For that price I'll give any pen a try. Can't wait to get it.

Please let me know where on eBay you purchased it, or the item number. Thank you.

Donnie

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.
Edmund Burke (1729 - 1797)

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Summary: I review these two Jinhao X450's. One of them has Superscript-style bent nib and a black lacquered finish with blotches of red powder; the other has a normal fine nib and a solid black matte finish. They are heavier than usual, but look good and function well for their price.

 

 

http://i13.tinypic.com/67i8r2b.png

 

 

About the One in Black Lacquer and Red Powder

 

Body Appearance

This pen follows a classic cigar-shaped design. I suspect it appeals to the widest audience, and I'm okay with that, but if I really could choose, I'd prefer a more cylindrical shape, like Pelikan's Souverän series.

The lacquer on this pen is probably only one layer, definitely no more than two. Embedded in the lacquer are some blotches of metallic red powder, which is reflective, but not shimmery. From a distance, this pen would look solid black; at about 10 feet away, one would notice the red blotches. Below is a close-up of one of the blotches, made from a scanner.

http://i10.tinypic.com/4y8k3tu.png

It would appear that there is only red powder at the blotches. Actually, every inch of this pen is covered with the red metallic powder, but one can only see the red powder (besides the powder that forms the blotches) from less than a foot away.

There are two gold-plated steel bands on the cap: one where the clip attaches to the cap, and a thick band at the cap opening. "Jinhao" and "X450" are engraved on this band, with "Jinhao" centered next to the clip and "X450" opposite the clip.

http://i9.tinypic.com/6fj1p2p.pnghttp://i13.tinypic.com/641s17b.png

The clip itself is a two-tone, selectively gold-plated folded steel sheet. The plating quality is pretty good. There is only about a half millimeter of overflow on one corner of the steel-colored portion. Upon uncapping, one sees that there are two more gold bands, on both sides of the section.

 

Ergonomics

This pen is the same size as a Montblanc 146, but due to the brass body, it is very heavy. At 1.6 ounces total, and 1 ounce without the cap, it weighs twice as much as a 146, and more than triple a Lamy Safari. Some might have problems with this. I myself am not bothered by weight.

The section has three patches of ridges: one under the pen for the middle finger, and two on top for the index finger and thumb. These patches or ridges do not create any sharp corners on the section, so if one doesn't use a grip suggested by these patches, the section doesn't become uncomfortable (unlike the Lamy Safari, where one is forced to grip according to the section's shape).

This pen cannot be posted. The pen is long enough that most people would not need to.

 

Filling system

This uses a cartridge or convertor. A convertor is included with the pen.

 

Nib

The nib on this pen is selectively gold-plated steel, with gold inside and outside, leaving some exposed steel between the gold. The plating quality is inaccurate; it seems that the plating was shifted down and left a little. However, the plating eccentricity is only noticeable from close up. There are some ornate engravings on the nib along the exposed steel area. In the center, "Jinhao" and "18KGP" is engraved. (Like I care what the gold content of the plating is.)

The tip of the nib is bent up like a Sailor Superscript nib, and the tipping material is flattened. The vendor calls this a "calligraphy nib."

http://i12.tinypic.com/62r2k2e.png

At a normal writing angle, it writes like a normal fine point. As the angle of the pen is lowered, the stroke gets thicker. At the normal writing angle, I wouldn't call this a smooth nib. At lower writing angles, it feels too awkward to be practical. Below are writing samples. Both are made with Pelikan Brilliant Black. The first one demonstrates the increasing line thickness as the angle is lowered. The second one is my attempt to get fei bai out of this.

http://i9.tinypic.com/6h4rnug.png

http://i9.tinypic.com/62ne2gw.png

The ability to make fine and broad strokes from the same nib might be convenient, but I see no use for it. It doesn't emulate a brush very well either. There is no fei bai from this, unless it skips. This nib has a special place somewhere, but not with me.

 

 

About the One in Black Matte

 

 

Most of what applies to the lacquered X450 also applies to the matte one. Unlike the lacquered X450, the matte one has a textured surface, which repels fingerprints to an extent. The nib on this one is a normal fine nib, and the gold plating is much better, although not perfect.

http://i9.tinypic.com/4unx43p.png

The tip is as smooth as a post-Chartpak Pelikan, and I think that's smooth enough for most people. At first I found this to be a little too dry. All it took was some spreading of the tines, and it was perfect. Also, it took a little time for me to adjust to the long distance between the section and the tip; the nib is about an inch long. Below is a writing sample, made with Private Reserve American Blue.

http://i17.tinypic.com/5y2mt6a.png

 

 

 

 

About Both

 

 

These nibs are, of course, interchangeable. I'll probably never use the Superscript-style nib, but I can switch the other one between the bodies depending on how I feel.

 

Value

I found these two as a set on eBay for $23 plus shipping. Mmmmm…that's nice.

 

Conclusion

For the price, I have no complaints; except that the weight might bother some. There are aesthetic imperfections, such as the inaccurate plating, but those are only noticeable if one looks for them.

My vast collection now consists of 5 pens! (These two, Pelikan M620 Stockholm, Lamy Safari, Reform Skywalker) Either one of these Jinhao X450's nicely serves as an all-purpose pen (if I put the normal nib on it); I can take it anywhere without worrying about losing or damaging it. It wouldn't look out of place on a tuxedo either. This was the gap I wished to fill when I bought these. It is now nicely filled.

 

 

 

 

http://i15.tinypic.com/5yt8p6g.jpg

Please provide the eBay item number. Thank you.

Donnie

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.
Edmund Burke (1729 - 1797)

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Chinese Pen Supplier on EBay Follow this link to a seller on Ebay who specializes in this brand.

I use a fountain pen because one ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to write a few reasonable words with a fountain pen.

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Interesting pen review Renzhe. Red sparkle finishing reminds me of my mini Duke.

Mike

Only when the last tree has died and the last river been poisoned and the last fish been caught will we realise we cannot eat money.

- Cree Indian Proverb

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For the price, I have no complaints; except that the weight might bother some. There are aesthetic imperfections, such as the inaccurate plating, but those are only noticeable if one looks for them.

 

Thanks for the review. Seen the price, they look like nice pens to me. However: these pens are made in China. The fact they are leads to the question why these pens are so cheap? Are these pens made to last? Is there anything wrong with the used material or the conditions under wich these pens are made?

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Donwinn, I PM'd you.

Oh, and can you not...umm...quote my entire review? :lol:

 

mr T., you asked

1. Why are Jinhao X450's priced as they are?

2. Are Jinhao X450's durable?

3. Is there anything "wrong" with brass, steel, gold, plastic, rubber (?), lacquer, and possibly other trace materials that compose Jinhao X450's?

4. Is there anything "wrong" with the conditions in which Jinhao X450's are made?

 

If no one's willing to do enough research to answer these questions well (I'm not.), would you do that yourself?

Edited by Renzhe

Renzhe

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Sorry mates. It looks like my image host cropped a large portion off the bottom of my pictures. I don't have these pens anymore so I can't take new pictures.

Renzhe

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$23 for two X450s? I got two for $1 each!

 

I absolutely love them. My two X450's are a "wine fog" and some sort of marbled black finish.

 

They write very, very, very well for $1/$10/$23 pens, in my opinion. I convinced my friend to go buy some on ebay as well. I'll upload pictures of my pens later, as it seems the X450 line has a large variety in styles.

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Thank you for the informative and interesting review.

Yet another proof you dont need to spend a fortune to enjoy a FP.

Respect to all

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  • 4 months later...

My gold X450, unfortunately, seems to have been crafted from pure refined suckulon - it takes forever to get it writing and then it'll stop if you leave it for a couple minutes, even capped. Considering I paid less than $5, I'm willing to give it another shot, though - pretty sure I just got a dud.

 

My Jinhao Long March, in contrast, has never been anything but great.

Edited by Silvermink

http://twitter.com/pawcelot

Vancouver Pen Club

 

Currently inked:

 

Montegrappa NeroUno Linea - J. Herbin Poussière de Lune //. Aurora Optima Demonstrator - Aurora Black // Varuna Rajan - Kaweco Green // TWSBI Vac 700R - Visconti Purple

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Nice review. I recently purchesed one of these myself. The nib on mine is a bit too smooth -- I believe it is a broad. But it lays down a nice line of ink.

How about the clips on your two models? On mine it takes an act of congress to pull it away from the cap and the I haven't found anything it will slip over as there is just too much pressure.

Thanks again for the review.

And it takes an act of congress, and a resolution of UN to pull off the cap on mine. :)

 

Edited by adallak

“Be nice to people on your way up because you meet them on your way down.” Jimmy Durante quotes (American Comedian, Pianist and Singer, 1893-1980)

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