Pilot Prera Clear Body Fountain Pen – Plumix Medium Italic Flat Nib – Translucent Blue Accent

18 04 2012

This nib's work should look very familiar

Now, this is a story all about how my pen got flipped, turned upside-down—and then it fell on the nib, which turned out to be a stroke of hidden luck—but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Don't look at one of these in person unless you want to buy it...because you'll want to buy it.

Simplistic, but in a most beautiful way. I love every bit of the design, from the little rows of dots around the cap to the delicate curve of the clip. It’s lightweight, but the plastic excuse me, acrylic feels appropriately well-made and durable.

And the way the cap closes sealed the deal. Also the pen. But mostly the deal.

This might very well be the most satisfying capping mechanism I have encountered in a pen. Slides on, then snaps neatly into place. There’ve got to be small magnets involved, the way it gently gives a little pull at the very end as you slide it on—subtle, but utterly, unreasonably satisfying. The cap stays solidly in place (hence why I’m certain it’s magnets miracles magnets), but paradoxically is easy to uncap with even one hand. Let me reiterate: this is my current top pick for best cap.

Not miniature, but it is delightfully petite

It’s small enough to look nice clipped on a small notebook, slipped into a jeans pocket (not as nice as a Kaweco Liliput, but not every pen can be a luxurious choking hazard), or even tossed unobtrusively in your coat pocket, but it’s not so small as to inhibit its useability or be considered a mini pen. I have no problem using it unposted, but people with bigger hands will probably want to post the cap.

Now, about that nib

Tell me what you see above this sentence. If you answered, a really terrible performance from a nib on a pretty pricey pen, then you would be correct! I must have tried nearly half a dozen inks on the F nib it came with. It vexed me to no end. I’ve learned how to use fountain pens and Japanese fine nibs at this point, so it wasn’t me. It was undeniably the nib. And on one of my repeated trips to flush out the pen to try a different ink during a break at work, invisible forces (possibly known as gravity) slapped the pen right out of my hand (not even the whole pen, mind you, just the assembly of nib, feed, grip, converter) and caused it to land nib-first on the hard tile floor.

See how bowed the nearest tine is? And this is AFTER having a professional try to make it better.

It made the writing…kind of better? But not better enough. That’s when it clicked—this feed is exactly the same as the Pilot Plumix feed, and this nib is exactly the same line of “Pilot Superior Quality” found on the Plumix. Could this possibly be the answer I was looking for?


The Plumix italic nib fit like a dream, and wrote as smooth as a professional ice-skater on a freshly Zamboni’d ice rink. That metaphor may be a little ham-fisted, but I’m not (anymore) and I can actually use an italic nib now in a way that isn’t embarrassing to the entire tradition of handwriting. Add the round grip (as opposed to the Plumix’s molded pliers-style grip) to the mix, a dash of the always quick-drying Lamy blue ink, and I daresay my handwriting even passes as being moderately attractive. You don’t see it? Maybe you’re not squinting hard enough.

Ultimate unstoppable combination pen for most excellent and presentable handwriting

So, after a few character-building hiccups, I now have a highly ideal pen. It’s stood up well, so far, through at least half a year’s worth of casual-use daily abuse, and it’s still going strong.
Pilot Prera Clear Body Fountain Pen – Fine Nib – Translucent Blue Accent at JetPens

Pilot Plumix Fountain Pen – Medium Italic Flat Nib at JetPens

Lamy Blue Ink at JetPens



13 responses

18 04 2012

Oh man, I gotta share with you about my Pilot experience too. I have a Pilot 78G which wrote horribly (a bit like the sample with La Reine Mauve)… UNTIL I dropped the pen accidentally, nib down. The tines bent all the way back like a gymnast. I was freaked out, so I pressed the tines against the inner wall of the cap and somehow that made them straight again. AND. It wrote perfectly after that. Now it’s one of my favourite pens. :P Could it be a Pilot+Leftie bad combination thing…? Which causes 1) Bad ink flow and 2) dropping of the pen nib down? :P

19 04 2012
A Few Random Morning Links … | The Pretense of Knowledge

[…] Pilot Prera Clear Body Fountain Pen – Plumix Medium Italic Flat Nib – Translucent Blue Accent […]

19 04 2012

I really like the cap, too. It slips on and feels really secure when it snaps on fully. The only other fountain pen cap I’ve experience that does the same thing is an ST Dupont pen, which is like 8 times more expensive than the Prera. Cool modification of the nib!

19 04 2012

Not sure what the problem with the nib was… I have a Prera Fine and it writes beautifully (I use Pilot Iroshizuku ink). I also have a Pilot Penmanship Extra Fine (same feed mechanism and nib style) and it’s just as good, though it does seem to clog a bit easier with J. Herbin ink.

23 04 2012
Monday Morning Review Round-up | The European Paper Company

[…] No Pen Intended: Pilot Acroball Smooth Writing Ballpoint & Pilot Prera Clear Body Fountain Pen […]

9 07 2012

Sorry, I’m new at this. I just purchased the Pilot Prera and would like the change the nib as described above. How does one do that without damaging pens and nibs?

27 07 2012
No Pen Intended

Not a problem! I only found this out through clumsily dropping my Pilot Plumix on the ground once. In my experience (because I don’t mind getting dirty, and when I do this I somehow always am in a position where there’s still ink in the pen), you just hold onto the nib and feed (say, with your thumb and forefinger) with one hand, the grip/body of the pen with your other hand, and pull them directly away from each other. Let me know if you need me to take an instructional picture or something like that! Good luck!

6 09 2012

An instructional photo for the more clumsy amongst us would be lovely…

19 10 2012
No Pen Intended

I only figured it out after having dropped a Plumix once. Now that my Prera has been cleaned out, I can get on that photo. Look for an update post soon!

6 09 2012

Much as I love my Pilot Prera Iro Ai’s medium nib, I do like broader nibs. So, thanks to your review showing the possibility, I’ve ordered a Pilot Plumix and plan to switch the nibs. :) I can always go back if I want something thinner…

20 10 2012
Ink Drop Soup: The Pilot Prera-Plumix Switcheroo « No Pen Intended

[…] a few quick pictures for those of you curious about swapping out the nib of your Pilot Prera for the lovely italic nib on the Pilot Plumix. Possibly you want to make your handwriting fancier […]

11 02 2014
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21 03 2014
Pilot Metropolitan Fountain Pen – Medium Nib – Black Crocodile Body | No Pen Intended

[…] fuzz and feather on nearly any paper); the Super Quality style used on the Plumix, Penmanship, and Prera; and the gold Vanishing Point nibs). This nib is new to me, and it’s pretty great. The sweet spot […]

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