Sailor Professional Gear Fountain Pen Review

In this 4K video I review the Sailor Professional Gear Classic Fountain Pen. This is an excellent full-size fountain pen with a 21kt gold nib.

Sailor Professional Gear – https://amzn.to/2D6pdX6

Aurora Ipsilon Deluxe Lacquer Fountain Pen Review

In this 4K video I review the Aurora Ipsilon Deluxe Lacquer Fountain Pen. This is an Italian fountain pen made by Aurora with an excellent 14kt gold nib and a beautiful brown marbled lacquer body. The Ipsilon is a great everyday fountain pen and one of my favorite fountain pens under $300.

Aurora Ipsilon Deluxe Lacquer Fountain Pen: https://amzn.to/31fLgnp

This video is NOT sponsored. Some product links are affiliate links which mean if you buy something I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Aurora Hastil Fountain Pen Review

In the 4K video above I review the iconic Aurora Hastil fountain pen. The Aurora Hastil is a modern design classic that started the slim fountain pen movement in the 1970s.

The Aurora Hastil is one of only a few fountain pens to be on permanent display at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City. Here is a link to their page on the Hastil : https://www.moma.org/collection/works/1919

New this pen is quite expensive but Aurora made these pens for quite a while so finding nice used examples isn’t too difficult.

Here is a nice Aurora Hastil Review from Unsharpen:

Unsharpen’s Aurora Hastil Review

TWSBI Diamond 580 AL R Fountain Pen Review

In this video I review the TWSBI Diamond 580 AL R Fountain Pen. This is a demonstrator fountain pen with a piston filling system. This is one of the best fountain pens on the market under $100 as well as on of the best fountain pens on Amazon.

TWSBI 580 AL R Fountain Pen – https://amzn.to/2YUphBy

This video is NOT sponsored. Some product links are affiliate links which mean if you buy something I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

———Cameras and Gear Used To Shoot This Video ——-

https://kit.co/BlakesBroadcast/blake-s-broadcast-video-kit

Pelikan M205 Demonstrator Fountain Pen Review

This video is a review of the Pelikan M205 Demonstrator Fountain Pen. This Pelikan fountain pen features a clear demonstrator body with a piston filling mechanism and a classic Pelikan design.

Pelikan M205 Demonstrator https://amzn.to/2Viwbym

If out of stock I recommend the Pelikan M205 Olivine (Green Demonstrator) https://amzn.to/2NwVKar

This video is NOT sponsored. Some product links are affiliate links which mean if you buy something I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

———Cameras and Gear Used To Shoot This Video ——-

https://kit.co/BlakesBroadcast/blake-s-broadcast-video-kit

Wing Sung 601 Fountain Pen Review

In this video I review the Wing Sung 601 Fountain Pen. This pen is a Parker 51 homage. This is one of the best Chinese fountain pens on the market as well as on of the best fountain pens on Amazon for under $50.

Wing Sung 601 Fountain Penhttps://amzn.to/2VfH9Er

This video is NOT sponsored. Some product links are affiliate links which mean if you buy something I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

———Cameras and Gear Used To Shoot This Video ——-

https://kit.co/BlakesBroadcast/blake-s-broadcast-video-kit

Lamy CP1 Fountain Pen Review

This is a review of the Lamy CP1 Fountain Pen. The CP1 is a slim fountain pen with a modern design. It is one of the best fountain pens for the office and one of my favorite fountain pens under $100.

Lamy CP1 https://amzn.to/2Nweaby

This video is NOT sponsored. Some product links are affiliate links which mean if you buy something I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Connect with Blake’s Broadcast on Social Media:

https://twitter.com/BlakesBroadcast https://www.instagram.com/blakesbroadcast/

———Cameras and Gear Used To Shoot Blake’s Broadcast ——-

https://kit.co/BlakesBroadcast/blake-s-broadcast-video-kit

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen Review With 18kt Gold Stub Nib

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -4

Kaweco is famous for its pocket-size pens but they also make a number of nice full-size pens including the Elite I am reviewing today.

I was drawn to the Elite’s large nib, that Kaweco refers to as a size 250 (Bock #6).  Most Kaweco pens including many of their other full-size models use a much smaller nib that Kaweco calls size 060, similar to a Bock #5. Kaweco also makes a 14kt solid gold 250 nib but it is not sold with any of their standard pens.  You have to buy this nib separately and unlike the steel version, you only get one nib grade, medium.

You may have noticed that my review title says 18kt gold, this is because I ordered a 14kt nib and received an 18kt nib instead.  This particular nib is not listed in their parts catalog.  From what I can tell the nib I received is an 18kt gold stub nib from the beautiful $1,500 Kaweco King Limited Edition fountain pen.  Now that we have sorted out what I am reviewing here, let’s get to the pen.

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -5

The Elite features a hand-polished faceted black piano lacquer acrylic body.  The acrylic is turned from a single block.  I imagine that “black piano lacquer” refers only to the color and high gloss and not the actual use of lacquer.  The cap is is chrome and features a black finial with a silver Kaweco “jewel”.  This same jewel is also found on the end of the barrel.  “Kaweco Elite GERMANY” is printed on the cap in black letters.

Vintage Kaweco Sport 12G  with the Kaweco Elite
Vintage Kaweco Sport 12G with the Kaweco Elite

 

I like the design of this pen; it looks modern and professional.  The high gloss acrylic feels silky smooth to the touch.  The clip is high quality with a clean imprint and no rough areas.

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -7

Even under the clip the finish is flawless.  I also like the knurling on the bottom of the barrel.

Kaweco "jewel" on the Elite
Kaweco “jewel” on the Elite

The Kaweco logo “jewels” on the top of the cap and end of the barrel are not as crisp as I would like and when I compared it to my vintage Kaweco Sport there was a noticeable difference; a small gripe but none-the-less worth pointing out.

Kaweco "jewel" on a vintage Sport
Kaweco “jewel” on a vintage Sport

The Elite weighs approximately 39 grams with the cap responsible for 18.5 of them; this makes the Elite on the heavy side.  To use this pen comfortably I had to write with the cap off.

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -3

Posting the cap makes the pen very top heavy and the cap does not sit very far down the barrel, so it’s length exacerbates the balance problem.

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -2

With the cap off the Elite is very comfortable with its long acrylic grip section.  The Elite measures 13.8mm long capped and about 13.4mm uncapped.

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -8

The 18kt gold nib is writes smoothly and is a good performer.  I find that it does write on the drier side (something I will likely adjust later) and that it can take a bit of work to get the ink flowing when a new cartridge is inserted.  Once it starts flowing the nib works great and is a pleasure to write with.  The 18kt gold nib has some spring but I wouldn’t say that it’s particularly soft.

18kt nib on top and steel on the bottom
18kt nib on top and steel on the bottom

The nib shares the same plastic feeder as the steel nib.  The nibs are threaded like those from Pelikan and Aurora, making nib swaps a breeze.

Threaded nib units are a excellent feature
Threaded nib units are an excellent feature

The Elite can hold two short international cartridges and interestingly there is a spring inside the barrel, something I haven’t seen on any other fountain pen.  This spring is useful in getting the second cartridge out of the barrel.

The Elite is not sold with a converter.  I tried a standard Bock converter which fit onto the section but was too fat for the barrel.  Luckily I have a Kaweco converter and surprise, surprise, it fit.  I did find that the converter regularly removed the spring when I unscrewed the section.  I would recommend removing the spring if you use a converter.

Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen -1

The Elite fountain pen has a street price of $150, while the 14kt gold nib (again, only sold separately) costs about $200.  In the $150 price bracket there are lots of excellent pens, like the Lamy 2000 and the Pilot Vanishing Point.  I find that Kaweco Elite stands up to these pens nicely.  It really comes down to preference.

But what about the $200 gold nib? The problem for me is that the steel nib is really good.  If we were talking an extra $50 then I would go for the gold but from a writing perspective the gold nib isn’t enough of an improvement to justify it’s high price.

Please note: this pen was provided to me by Kaweco at a subsidized cost for purposes of this review.

Here are some other great reviews of the Kaweco Elite fountain pen:

(I have no affiliation with any of the sites linked below)

The Pencilcase Blog – Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen

The Gentleman Stationer – Pen Review: Kaweco Elite

My Pen Needs Ink – Kaweco Elite – Pen Review

Pens! Paper! Pencils! – Kaweco Elite fountain pen review

Gourmet Pens – Review: @Kaweco Elite Fountain Pen – Medium @JetPens

Pen Addict – Kaweco Elite Review

Danitrio Hakkaku Ancient Flower Midori-Dame Fountain Pen Review

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-4

Danitrio is perhaps the biggest name in Maki-e pens outside of the main three Japanese makers (Pilot/Namiki, Platinum/Nakaya and Sailor).

Danitrio Maki-e pens are not an entirely Japanese product. The company is based in California and the pens, as far as I know, are manufactured and painted in Japan but use Bock nibs from Germany…so it’s a multinational effort to put one these pens together.

I have been eyeing a Danitrio for a while as they offer very good value for money. While they are by no means cheap, they are considerably less expensive than most comparable Japanese pens.

One of the great things about Danitrio is that they offer their pens in a large number of shapes and finishes.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-5

Despite having similar dimensions to a Montblanc 149, the Hakkaku is one of Danitrio’s smallest models measuring 13.5cm long and 1.5cm wide.

The ebonite body has a faceted flat top design. The dark Midori-dame finish softens the look of the facets. A lighter color would do a better job of accentuating this pen’s shape.

The clip is sprinkled with gold flakes and painted in the same midori-dame finish as the body. Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-43I am not a big fan of flowers but I kept coming back to this ancient flower design.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-13

It is very well balanced and looks great against the green background.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-11

This pen (I am told) uses a Togidashi Maki-e technique.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-10

The finish quality of the Hakkaku is comparable to Nakaya. It’s not perfect like a Namiki pen; it has more of hand made look and feel to it. The threading is smoother than on my Nakayas and unlike my Nakaya Naka-ai Negoro the design always lines up when I put the cap on.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-12

The section is signed with the artist’s signature.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-9

The #6 size nib is solid 18kt gold and produced by Bock in Germany.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-6

The fireball design looks great. The nib has a fine point and is considered one of their “soft” nibs. The nib is soft and if you apply some pressure you can get some line variation but for me with a light hand I don’t notice much.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-7

The fine point is smooth and writes with a medium line width (typical Bock). If you want a true fine you are better off with an extra fine nib.  The nib doesn’t have as much character as those made by Pilot or Platinum but it’s a good performer and if you like a smooth soft nib this one is very nice.

The Hakkaku takes standard international cartridges and comes with a Bock converter.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-15

The feed is plastic (and out of alignment, the dealer has since remedied the problem).

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-8

This pen has a retail price of $1,900 and I was able to get it for a bit less than half that.  By comparison, a plain urushi lacquer Namiki Yukari Royale runs $1,500 and a Maki-e versions range from about $4,000-$10,000.  I am not saying this pen is the same quality as a Namiki (it isn’t) but it is a more affordable way to get your hands on a good quality Maki-e pen.

Danitrio Hakkaku Fountain Pen-76

At the end of the day I am really happy with this pen.  It looks and writes great and it was reasonable enough that I don’t worry about using it everyday.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Old Style Fountain Pen Review

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -2

Pilot’s most famous fountain pen is without question the Vanishing Point (aka the Capless).  This is the best selling and simply the best retractible nib fountain pen ever produced.

Many models have been introduced since the Vanishing Point’s inception in the early 1960s and the one I am reviewing today is a “Namiki” branded model with a faceted black plastic body and white metal trim. This body style was introduced in the 1970s stayed in production until the late 1990s. This particular Vanishing Point was made in 1997 right before the introduction of the current metal bodied Pilot Vanishing Point in 1998.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -3
Old style “Namiki” branded faceted Vanishing Point (nib extended)

This older model (which I will refer to from now on as the “faceted VP”) is much more attractive with its elegantly integrated clip and slimmer faceted body. The current Vanishing Point has a much less harmonious design with bloated clumsy look to it.

Current style Pilot Vanishing Pont with nib extended
Current style Pilot Vanishing Point (nib extended)

 

The faceted VP is lighter and slimmer, weighing in at 18.5 grams and measuring just 11mm wide (clip not included).  The current model weighs in at 31 grams.  To my hand the faceted VP is much more comfortable to use.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -5
Top: faceted VP with Pendleton Brown Butter Line Stub Bottom: current model with Richard Binder Italifine

The nib on this faceted VP is 14kt gold instead of 18kt gold on the current production model. The nib started life with a medium point and was ground into a butter line stub by Pendleton Brown.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -8

This particular grind offers a great combination of usability and writing flair. I have done a number of custom grinds on medium nibs and this one my favorite so far. The nib is so smooth with just a hint of feedback…it’s luxurious.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -6
Top: faceted VP Bottom: current model VP

Downsides?

The converter. These faceted VPs use a squeeze sac converter. It doesn’t hold enough ink so I always use cartridges with the metal cartridge cap.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -4
Top: squeeze sac converter in nib unit Bottom: piston converter in nib unit

The current model by comparison uses the Pilot Con-50 which is nicer to use and holds a slightly more reasonable amount of ink.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -3

This is an awesome pen.  You can find them used ranging from about $80 to $150.

Pilot Namiki Vanishing Point Fountain Pen -1