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In this 4K video I review the Pilot Explorer Fountain Pen. This affordable fountain pen features a matte black resin body and a modern design.
The Pilot Explorer is an affordable fountain pen that competes directly with Pilot’s own Metropolitan fountain pen as well as other entry level pens like the Lamy Safari and TWSBI Swipe. Compared to the Metropolitan, the Explorer is more modern and masculine in appearance. It has a long slender body with rings at the end of the cap and the body that almost look like threading.
The snap cap features a large Pilot logo. Normally I don’t like big logos but on this pen the blind debossed logo looks great. There are two holes in the outer material of the cap. I am not sure if these are supposed to look like the windows on a ship or what but it is a distinctive look that adds to the industrial appearance of the pen. The clip is a black coated metal and blends very well with the cap and body resin material. The clip feels strong and robust. I do not think it is spring loaded.
The stainless steel nib is the same as you get on a Pilot Metropolitan and comes in Medium and Fine. I opted for the fine. These nibs tend to write one grade finer; a medium is more like a western fine and a fine is more like a western extra fine. It is possible to use Plumix nibs on these pens if you wanted a wider italic nib. The writing performance is excellent. I had no issues with skipping or hard starting. It was a perfect performer in the three weeks I’ve been using the pen.
The grip section is a translucent smoke colored plastic. You can see the feed through the section which looks great. Compared to the Metropolitan, the grip section is a little longer. The Explorer comes with a Con-B converter and an ink cartridge. Like all Pilot C/C pens they use their proprietary system but you do get a lot of options for converters as well as 7 ink cartridge colors to choose from.
When posted the pen does get long but it only weighs about 15 grams so there is no issue with the pen feeling top heavy. By comparison the Pilot Metropolitan with its metal body weighs around 25 grams. I found the Explorer to be very comfortable to write with.
Both the Metropolitan and Explorer retail for just under $30 and their street prices are under $24. So the question is which is better the Metropolitan or the Explorer? It is a tough call. I personally prefer the Explorer because I think it looks better and its lighter weight makes it more comfortable but for people wanting a more premium feeling pen the Metropolitan is hard to beat.
I received this pen free of charge from Pen Chalet for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. All views and opinions in this review are my own. The links in this review are not affiliate links.
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