Ohto Rook Fountain Pen – Fine Nib – Black Red Body

28 04 2012

Sorry, Shoreline Gold, but you could never hope to beat turquoise as the destined color for this pen

Spoiler alert: this may very well be my favorite compact fountain pen.

It's a grower

The Rook is designed for pocket perfection. The aluminum body is so lightweight, you might mistake it for plastic (I had to bite mine, like a pirate with a suspect gold piece, to make sure it really was metal…it seems like metal….you’d better buy and bite one yourself, though, just to be sure). It is the shortest fountain pen I own, by 0.4 cm, shorter even than the Kaweco Liliput, which JetPens STILL erroneously claims is the “smallest fountain pen at JetPens that accepts standard international short cartridges”—the Rook accepts standard international short cartridges and by JetPens’ own measurements is shorter. But it’s also much cheaper; perhaps that’s why it isn’t getting the recognition it deserves?

Put it in your change purse, your cigarette case (instead of cigarettes; smoking is bad for you, kids!), your pocket, behind your ear, inside of a larger pen...

Sleek and durable body, has a clip, easy to open (once you figure out, after a comedy of frustration, to hold the black end part on the non-clip end and pull away the rest of the black body and clip end), snaps securely shut, and when posted boasts the useable length of a full size pen. And it’s sturdy. This is what a pocket pen needs to be: quick and convenient, for ease of use, but also sturdy and reliable, otherwise it wouldn’t be worth using.

Efficiency like this, it's gotta be German.

It’s not my favorite nib on a compact pen—my heart belongs to Kaweco on that score—but it’s still a good nib. A little on the dry side (especially compared to something like the A. G. Spalding), the nib is more tactile than smooth, but it’s never scratchy. Ink flow is good, unless I let it sit for a month or more without using it.

Not the most attractive scrollwork accents, but it tried.

What matters is it does what I need it to do, without any notable problems that would get in the way of writing, and the design is comfortable enough that I could write for an extended period of time if I need to. Be warned though: the barrel, as you can see, is a bit slim; if you find thin pens uncomfortable then this might not be the pen for you.

Your pocket's new best friend

My only complaint against the Ohto Rook is that the red band around the clip area isn’t the same shade of red as the grip; the clip-band is just a little lighter, perhaps a fraction more orange. But for such a great pen, that’s pretty nitpicky stuff.

Ohto Rook Fountain Pen – Fine Nib – Black Red Body at JetPens

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7 responses

28 04 2012
Ivan

Smaller than the Liliput? Wow! How about diameter wise, compared to the Liliput?

28 04 2012
shorediva (@shorediva)

I slightly prefer the Ohto Tasche (I found the construction on my Rook to be a little loose and the Tasche is a rock) but the Rook is a fine fine pen. Ohto is probably dollar for dollar the best deal in fountain pens right now.

2 05 2012
Nicole Aptekar (@nicoles)

I agree with you. My friend has a Rook, and I’ve got a Tasche, and I love my Tasche! The Rook feels slightly looseyflimsy to me, and the Tasche is just luscious.

30 04 2012
Monday Grab Bag of Links … | The Pretense of Knowledge

[...] Drive Ink Nouveau: Fountain Pen 101 Friday, Introduction Ink Review: J. Herbin Ambre de Birmanie Ohto Rook Fountain Pen – Fine Nib – Black Red Body Review: Pilot/Namiki Vanishing Point Raden – Medium TWSBI Diamond 540 Fountain Pen Review Ink [...]

14 05 2012
Monday Morning Review Round-up | The European Paper Company

[...] Pen Intended: Ohto Rook Fountain Pen & Pentel RSVP Ballpoint Pen & Bic “For Her” Gel Ink [...]

26 05 2012
Cross Spire Titian Red Lacquer Fountain Pen – F nib « No Pen Intended

[...] this has got to be the thinnest fountain pen I own. The Kaweco Liliput or perhaps the Ohto Rook are the only others that comes close, but they are not standard length pens like the Spire. [...]

21 12 2013
Ink Drop Soup: Expensive Fountain Pens Just 30 and Below | No Pen Intended

[…] quite as many, but you’ve got the Pelikan Pelikano, the Hero 616 (as yet unreviewed!), the Ohto Rook, and the Sailor HighAce Neo Beginner’s Fountain […]

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