Posts filed under Parker

Parker Vector Fountain Pen Review

Parker Vector Fountain Pen Review

(Sarah Read is an author, editor, yarn artist, and pen/paper/ink addict. You can find more about her at her website and on Twitter.)

Parker is undoubtedly one of the great legacy penmakers, so it makes sense that they should have their own entry-level fountain pen. The Vector has been around for a long time, and some fresh new colors have brought it back into the spotlight. It's fun and inexpensive and functional--but I don't think it stands up very well against its competitors. There are a lot of good quality affordable fountain pens, now. We're in a golden age of pens and it's easy to be spoiled for choice.

Parker Vector Fountain Pen

The Vector is a slim, lightweight fountain pen with a plastic body and metal accents. The grip section and bottom cap where the pen posts are a brushed gunmetal color, and the clip is chrome in the shape of the classic Parker arrow. The grip section is long and slim. The nib is plain stainless steel over a smooth feed.

My first thought, when I lifted the pen from its box, was, "Is this a disposable fountain pen?" That's not a good sign, probably, because, no--it's not. But the plastic it's made of feels like it is. Maybe it's the snap cap with a lack of cap band, but it reminds me a bit of a Crayola marker. It feels like it's not meant to last. For a $12 pen I'm not expecting an heirloom, of course, but it wasn't a good first impression.

Parker Vector Fountain Pen Nib

The $12 price tag is a little misleading, as well, because the pen doesn't come with a converter. That's a separate $9.25. So, $21.25 is closer to the real cost. When compared with other beginner pens that come with converters, this feels like it's priced a bit high for this quality.

The writing experience hasn't been very impressive, either. It does write, and the Parker blue ink it comes with is beautiful and well behaved, but I'd want to buy a bottle and put it in a different pen. The nib isn't too scratchy, but I had some drying issues and the feed seemed to struggle to keep the flow going when writing for longer periods. The grip section is also uncomfortable. It isn't shaped at all and it's slick, so I was constantly having to readjust my grip. The plastic edge where the body meets the section is also quite sharp. There's no smoothing or band there, so it's just raw plastic.

Parker Vector Fountain Pen Writing

All told, there isn't much about this pen that would move me to recommend it, even for a beginner. The Pilot Metropolitan is ultimately less expensive and much better quality. Parker makes some really fantastic fountain pens, but this one doesn't seem to fit the brand. Perhaps my expectations are playing a role in my disappointment here, but I don't see myself reaching for this pen.


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Posted on August 2, 2018 and filed under Parker, Fountain Pens, Pen Reviews.

Parker Jotter London Architecture Red Chrome Edition Review

Parker Jotter London Architecture Review

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

The Parker Jotter is an iconic classic that is both easily recognizable and unassuming. If you've never owned one, then you've probably seen one out in the wild. They're available all over the place, from our favorite retailers to big-box local stores. But, just like every popular pen out there, special editions are a fairly common occurrence. The latest special edition to cross my desk is the Parker Jotter London Architecture Red Chrome edition.

Parker Jotter London Architecture

Even though this is a special edition, you immediately know that it's a Jotter. The red upper body has a great candy apple sheen , and the grip section has an ornate argyle pattern that gives the body a nice texture and visual interest. Apart from the color and unique texture, the pen is a standard Jotter. The clip is the usual Parker arrow design, and the only branding is found on the clip assembly around the body.

Parker Jotter London Architecture Clip

One of the things I associate instantly with the Parker Jotter is the unique "ker-thunk" that the click mechanism produces. When you want the room to know that you're using a pen, this is the one to get their attention. One of the other things I associate with the Parker Jotter is the character Boris Grishenko from GoldenEye and his amazing pen twirling skills. I'm pretty sure that's a Parker Jotter used in the scene, but I can't be sure since Boris is just so good at pen acrobatics.

Boris Grishenko Pen

Once you get down to the writing portion of this pen, you're greeted with the understated (yet reliable) Parker Quinkflow refill in blue. I always have mixed feelings about the Parker Jotter refills, mostly due to the fact that they can be a bit finicky when first starting to use them. After the ink starts flowing, though, they usually perform great. They're not on the same level as a Schmidt EasyFlow 9000, but they're pretty darn close. For a refill that the manufacturer makes and includes with the pen, it's a great choice. Of course, since this is a Jotter, you have many, many refill choices if the Quinkflow refill isn't for you.

Parker Jotter Refill

Overall, the Parker Jotter London Architecture Red Chrome edition is a great addition to the Parker lineup. It's not terribly expensive, and, at $25, it's only a few bucks more than a standard Jotter. If this catches your eye, pick one up before they're gone.

(Vanness Pens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)


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Parker Jotter Review
Posted on June 20, 2018 and filed under Parker, Jotter, Ballpoint, Pen Reviews.