Posts filed under Fountain Pens

Regal 82 William Fountain Pen Review

(Jeff Abbott is a regular contributor at The Pen Addict. You can find more from Jeff online at Draft Evolution and Twitter.)

The Regal 82 William fountain pen caught my eye when it landed on JetPens for two reasons: it has a brass body and a metal grip section. I typically love pens with a heavy body and metal grips, so I dove on it immediately. Not knowing anything about the brand, I made a mental note to look into them later on. After some brief research, it appears that Regal is a large wholesaler of their own line of pens with a presence in several large US cities, as well as India. I don't know for sure, but word on the street is that the pens are made in Taiwan. Not bad, right? So, how does this new player stack up against the other competitors? It puts up a good fight, but I think a lot of it will come down to personal aesthetic preference.

Aesthetics

The pen comes in 5 different colors: black, white, French rose, lavender pink, and hot pink. Is it just me, or is that a lot of pink? White and black are standard, and pink is also a popular color, but I can't help but think that some other choices would be advantageous here. Purple? Green? Blue? You get my point, right?

The pen has a great heft to it. It's a fairly slim body, so the weight can be a bit unexpected when you first pick it up. Being slim, it still feels very good in hand. I really enjoy writing with it and haven't experienced any cramps or fatigue while using it. This is always a good sign of proper balance and sizing for pens that I use.

There's a marble-like band above the grip section of the barrel, and I'm not a huge fan of it for two reasons: it looks fake and it seems misplaced on the pen. Other than that, I really like the white color of the model I chose. It's pearly and has a nice glimmer to it. The chrome furniture is also a great touch.

The decorative thing at the top of the pen cap is...confusing. I'm not sure what it is or what it represents, but it just doesn't speak to me in any way. I want to replace it with something flat and subtle.

The clip is strong, but not annoyingly so. The cap, on the other hand, has been a major problem for me. This cap is snug when it's on the pen. It takes two hands (firmly gripped) to remove the cap from the pen. I'm worried that I might damage the nib at some point from trying too hard to remove the cap. I'm hoping this will get easier with some wear, but I also think it's unacceptable for a new pen. The cap can post on the pen, but it's awkward. It makes the pen extremely long and put it off balance. I've been using it without the cap posted, and that seems to work best.

The grip is metal and feels very nice. It's smooth and is mostly the same shape, which is a big win in my book. The nib is small and two-toned, which isn't a problem, but the fact that it says "18K GP" bothers me. I think this is meant to be decorative, and it might very well have some small amount of gold-plating, but it gives the wrong impression.

Overall, the pen feels good in the hand, and that's the most important part of the aesthetics, right?

Writing

The 82 William only accepts international short catridges, or that's what it claims. I'm sure that you could use a converter if it was slim enough. The cavity in the pen body is deep enough to hold a converter. The Monteverde converter comes to mind.

I loaded the pen with J. Herbin Éclat de Saphir instead of the black cartridge that came with the pen. This ink does really well in the medium nib on the pen, and I've been completely happy with the way it writes.

The line is consistent and tad on the wet side, which is what I prefer in a medium or bold nib. So far, it's been very good about not drying out in between uses — there haven't been any problems with starting or skipping, and it can even write after a few minutes of being uncapped and unused.

Overall, it writes really well and feels great in the hand. For that reason, it's a really good pen, and at the $30 price point, it's a fairly good value. Like I said earlier, I think the major factor to consider here is aesthetics. Do you like the way this pen looks? If so, then I'm pretty confident that you'll enjoy using it as it's a great writer. If you don't like the look of the pen, I'd recommend passing it.

After using this pen from Regal, I'd be interested in trying others from the company.

Posted on November 26, 2014 and filed under Fountain Pens, Pen Reviews, Regal.

Levenger True Writer Select Fountain Pen Review

When I think of Levenger the first things that pop into my mind are their amazing leather accessories and, of course, their famous Circa notebook system. Pens have always been part of the lineup too, and they are becoming part of Levenger’s focus now more than ever.

I was impressed with the L-Tech Stealth I reviewed last year, and when Levenger offered up another pen for review I wanted to branch out a bit, choosing the True Writer Select in the beautiful Mediterranean resin barrel.

My pictures do not do this pen justice in several areas. For one, the Mediterranean blue swirl pattern of the barrel is stunning. It looks great in the hand, great on the desk, great anywhere really. The chrome accents really make it pop. Secondly, this is a large pen. Larger than I imagined when looking at it online. And that may be my favorite feature.

I don’t have many large, heavy fountain pens so using the True Writer Select was a bit of a new experience for me. Size wise, it is in the range of the Pelikan M1000 series - another popular large pen. I had concerns that it was too large, but those concerns were completely dismissed when I started writing with it. The pen is so well designed and balanced - it took Levenger over a year to perfect it - that the size isn’t noticeable when writing. That’s good design.

The True Writer Select is a cartridge/converter fill, using standard international size accessories. I inked it up with Pilot Blue Black and the ink flowed smoothly and consistently from the fine steel nib. My lines were clean and sharp right out the box with no adjustments necessary. It is a joy to write with.

There are no downsides as far as form and function go. The True Write Select is a fantastic pen all the way around. The only hangup I see is the price. At $169.00, you are paying more for a steel nib pen than some popular 14k gold nib pens. Nib material isn’t everything though - one of my favorite pens runs $350 and has a steel nib. The total package is what counts, and Levenger has put in the time and perfected the details to make an exceptional pen.

My thanks to Levenger for sending me this True Writer Select Fountain Pen for review.

Posted on November 14, 2014 and filed under Levenger, Fountain Pens, Pen Reviews.

Pilot Elite 95S Fountain Pen Giveaway

Image via JetPens

Image via JetPens

Happy Fountain Pen Day everyone!

I wanted to give away something cool to celebrate Fountain Pen Day and I decided to go with a pen I have on my wish list but don't own yet: The Pilot Elite 95S. This is a remake of a classic Pilot design from the 1970's and looks beautifully done. It is a small pen when capped, but morphs into a full-sized writer when posted. The design of the 14k nib makes me swoon.

You can pick any one of the Pilot Elite 95S on this page from my friends at JetPens, which includes both Black and Deep Red bodies and nib sizes ranging from Extra Fine to Medium.

Here is how to enter:

  1. Leave one comment on this post anytime between now, and Saturday night at 11:59 PM Eastern Time. You are limited to one entry. This contest is open to US and International readers.

  2. For this contest, I will pick one winner at random from the comments section of this post. The comments will be numbered in the order they are received, i.e. the first comment is #1, the second #2, and so on. The Random Integer Generator at random.org will be used to pick the number of the winner.

  3. The contest winner will be posted on Sunday, November 9th. The winner will have one week to email me via the Contact link at the top of the page.

Make sure you spend Fountain Pen Day with your loved ones - your pens!

Posted on November 7, 2014 and filed under Fountain Pens, Giveaways.

Kaweco AL Sport Stonewashed Roller Ball Pen Review

Finding the perfect pocket pen is a challenge. Most of us only carry one. Should it be a ballpoint that will write in almost any situation? A fountain pen that will give you the writing experience you crave? Or a rollerball that is a bit of a mix between the two?

I’ve carried a fountain pen for the most part for the past couple of years, either the Kaweco AL Sport or, more recently, the Kaweco Liliput Brass Wave with a custom nib grind. Now that the AL Sport Roller Ball comes in the awesome Stonewashed finish I wanted to see if it could break into what has been a fountain pen only rotation. Short version: It can, and it has.

If it wasn’t already obvious, Kaweco not only makes great pens, but many of their models are perfect for every day carry. The AL Sport Stonewashed Roller has the same great build quality as its counterparts. The aluminum barrel has a solid feel, threads nicely, and can take a beating on the go and not skip a beat when it is time to write or draw. Just what I want in a pocket pen.

What makes the AL Sport Roller a real contender is the use of a Parker compatible refill. It ships with a Kaweco-branded Schmidt roller in medium, which on its own provides a smooth, dark line. It’s too wide for me, so I swapped it immediately with a Moleskine 0.5 mm gel refill in black and went to town. If you prefer the pressurized ballpoint of the Space Pen Refill that is an option too. Any Parker-style refill fits, making this a customizable EDC workhorse.

Kaweco pens are built for this. They are durable, long lasting, and flat-out beautiful. The AL Sport line is made for the pocket as much as they are made for writing when it is time to get down to business.

(JetPens is a sponsor of The Pen Addict and I received this product at no charge.)

Posted on October 20, 2014 and filed under AL Sport, Kaweco, Fountain Pens, Pen Reviews.