Posts filed under Sailor

Sailor Jentle Blue Black Ink Cartridge Review

I am a big fan of bottled inks, as the sagging shelf in my closet will tell you, but there is absolutely a case to be made for fountain pen ink cartridges. What you sacrifice in variety and cost, you make up for in convenience, and sometimes that is a price worth paying.

Sailor inks are some of my favorites, including the bottled blue black and both the black and blue black Nano inks in bottled and cartridge form. It was a foregone conclusion that I was going to try out the new Jentle ink cartridges, in blue black of course, and they work wonderfully.

All Sailor inks I have tried are well lubricated and flow smoothly in all nibs and in all nib sizes, and the blue black cartridge is no exception. I popped in into my medium nib Sailor Black Luster and it worked just as expected. The lines were solid and there were no flow issues at all. The only thing I noticed is that the color is slightly darker than the blue black ink from the bottle. This happens from time to time when comparing bottled inks versus the same ink in cartridge form. It's often not a dead-on match.

My only hope is that Sailor expands on this line to include even more colors. Pelikan has done this, adding matching cartridges to their Edelstein ink line, so hopefully this becomes a thing with brands. Yes, it is not as cost effective or environmentally friendly, but if the barrier to entry can be lowered even a tick I think it is worth it.

(JetPens is an advertiser on The Pen Addict and I received this product at no charge.)

"This end up" and a born on date. My kind of 12-pack.

"This end up" and a born on date. My kind of 12-pack.

Posted on December 8, 2014 and filed under Sailor, Ink Reviews.

Sailor Fasciner 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.)

Sailor is one of the brands that I'm a huge fan of without even owning many of their pens. Every time I've bought or tried a Sailor fountain pen, I've been very impressed – even (especially) with their budget-friendly offerings.

The Fasciner is no exception. It's a great all-around pen, and looks gorgeous to boot. At just over $100, it's not an impulse buy, but it's definitely worth every penny.

Aesthetics

The Fasciner has the same body shape as a Sailor 1911 pen, but with a white body and gold trim. Handling the pen, you can tell immediately that it's solidly built. It might not be one of Sailor's premium pens, but it definitely isn't cheap, either. The quality can be felt when handling the pen and also when writing.

The section is made of metal and has a small rubber o-ring that snugs up to the body when the section is screwed on, which makes for a tight seal in case of any accidental ink leakage inside the body. Internal bleeding might not be the best phrase, but you get what I mean.

The clip is a great strength – not too tight or loose. I haven't really clipped it to anything besides the inside of a case because the body feels too nice to risk getting scratched or scuffed. Although, it's done pretty well against any accidental blemishes on my part. As a desk pen, you don't have to worry about being careful with it. In a bag or pocket with other objects, it might not fare so well.

The cap is a screw fit, and it feels great coming on and off the pen. When screwing the cap on, instead of hitting a sudden stop at the end of the threads, you reach a soft, gentle end of the threads. It's a small detail, but it makes me smile every time. It just feels great.

The nib is "pink gold" color, but I can't detect any of the pink. I was assuming it might be something like the TWSBI rose gold color, but I just can't see any of the pink. Despite that, it looks great. I'm not a big fan of gold trim, but it works really well on this creamy white pen. It gives it a highly classy look, and I like it for that. The trim on the cap is done very well. None of it looks or feels like cheap decoration flourishes – they're solid components of the pen.

The cap posts on the back of the pen, but you have to place it firmly on the end to make it stay. Otherwise it will wobble a bit when writing.

Writing

As every Sailor pen I've tried before it, it writes beautifully and effortlessly. It's a fine nib (no other options available here), and it runs finer than other Japanese nibs, like Pilot or Platinum. It's almost too fine for my taste, but it isn't an issue because it writes so smoothly.

This wasn't always the case, however. When I got the pen, it was a really dry writer. It wasn't unusable, and some might even prefer how it wrote out of the box, but I lean toward wetter nibs all around. A couple of gentle pulls on the tines to bring them away from the feed a bit fixed the problem for the most part. At some point I might like to have it worked on by a professional, but it writes great now.

It's the kind of fountain pen nib that I'm 100% confident about. Know what I mean? It's had zero issues with starting, skipping, drying, or any of these problems that sometimes plague or briefly affect pens. Some of my pens have 95% of my confidence, because every now and then they might skip or have a hard time starting, and they always respond to the same fixes. They write well, but sometimes have a small little issue. Not this one. It's a great writer.

It also feels great in the hand, as you might expect from Sailor. It's well balanced in the hand when writing and feels like an extension of your hand instead of a separate object.

Overall

If you're a fan of Sailor's pens, the Fasciner is a great piece to add to the collection. If your'e new to Sailor, it's a nice middle-of-the-road place to try them out. It's hard to beat the High-Ace Neo in terms of value, but you get a lot of extra class and finesse with the Fasciner.

As you might expect, it works with Sailor's cartridges, or you can purchase a converter to use with bottled inks.

Posted on December 2, 2014 and filed under Fountain Pens, Pen Reviews, Sailor.

Sailor Jentle Four Seasons Souten Ink Review

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

The only experience I've had with Sailor inks so far are the Nano Black cartridges that I ordered with a High Ace Neo. It was an excellent introduction, as the Nano Black is one of the most well-behaved inks I've ever had the pleasure of using. How does the Souten fare against the likes of Pilot Iroshizuku? Pretty well, but it hasn't dethroned Kon-peki for me.

Sailor Jentle Four Seasons Souten is a bit darker and more saturated than Kon-peki, but it's still a beautiful color in its own right. It's the shade of blue that I've been looking for a long time. It seems like every time I find a nice royal blue, it dries to a much less interesting shade. Inks that dry lighter just don't make it into my rotation very often. I'm not very good at describing shades, but I'd describe this as a royal medium blue. JetPens says it's azure, and I guess that's a pretty good description as well.

You could say that Souten is the closest relative to Sailor Sky High, but I don't think it's close enough to qualify. Even so, it's a fantastic ink, and I don't think it's fair to compare the two, or to compare Souten to Kon-peki.

As I'd expect from Sailor, the ink is incredibly well-behaved. If there was one thing that annoyed me about the Nano Black, it's the fact that it dries up in the nib incredibly fast. Souten hasn't dried on the nib even when I've had the pen uncapped and unused for over 2 minutes.

On the page, Souten is smooth and wet. It still manages to dry quickly depending on what kind of paper you're using, and the finished color is still quite pleasing. Looking back through my notes, I'm always drawn to Souten before I know what it is. It has a gravitational pull of some sort.

There is slight shading in this ink, but it's not spectacular. In a wet nib, you likely won't see any shading, but it does look nice in a specialty nib. If blue inks that shade are your thing, there are others that have better shading qualities.

It's behaved very well in the pens I've tried it out in, and it has definitely found a spot in my rotation of favorite inks. Good thing, too. I've had a stretch of bad choices with blue inks, so I'm really happy to have a new go-to blue ink that doesn't look dull or ordinary.

Bleeding, feathering, and show-through aren't issues with this ink. It plays nice with all types of paper, but really shines on premium sheets like Rhodia.

Cleaning out is similar to many other inks. No hitches or problems.

When you talk about inks, you don't always feel the need to mention the bottle. The Sailor Jentle ink bottles are an exception. I love the design of this bottle. It's low and wide and appears to be squatting down to offer the ink. I love the wide cap and heft. Also, it uses a fairly standard filling reservoir that sits in the mouth of the bottle. Just turn the bottle upside down and back up, and you're ready to fill your pen from the full reservoir.

Overall, Sailor Jentle Souten is a great blue ink that I have no problem using daily. When I'm using this ink, I don't feel that it's lacking anything, which means I don't constantly want to re-ink my pen for no good reason. It's a solid, bold blue that works great and draws the writer and reader to the page.

After using this ink, I'm sure I'll be trying more from the Jentle line of inks.

Posted on October 1, 2014 and filed under Ink Reviews, Sailor.

Sailor Kobe Ink No. 37 Island Blue Ink Review

I'm relatively certain that if I lived in Japan I would be broke. Just setting foot in a store like the Nagasawa Stationery Center would cause a wallet-gasm, if not outright bankruptcy. And then to learn they have their own shop exclusive line of inks, from Sailor no less? Well, let's just say I'm very lucky to have amazing readers who are helping me keep my wallet in check and my marriage intact.

Sailor Kobe Ink No. 37 Island Blue is another sample from a batch that Pen Addict reader Richard sent over, and a beautiful one at that. This color is inspired by "the view of the blue sea from Kobe", and if that is actually the case I need to book a plane ticket. It is a saturated ink, but vibrant at the same time. There is some shading too, which adds to its beauty. I don't have many other standard blues to compare it to, but it is unlike any other blue ink I have tried.

Prior to this review, Sailor was already one of my favorite fountain pen inks. Across the board, they perform perfectly with any pen, nib, and paper combo I've come up with. None of their inks have ever stained any pen, and they are easy to clean. Now, only if these great Japanese options were easy to buy.

Posted on August 4, 2014 and filed under Ink Reviews, Sailor.