Pelikan Edelstein 2017 Ink of the Year – Smoky Quartz

30 09 2017

My dudes, there has been an update to the WordPress app and now I can’t find the add caption button. Had to drag out my laptop to add this. If only I had some way of searching to access a world of knowledge that might tell me…..

Time to lay down some quick thoughts on Smoky Quartz before the dawn of spooktober, as this is a perfect ink color for the pumpkin spiced season.

Pumpkin spice scented ink, make it happen. Somebody. J Herbin, I’m looking at you

I wasn’t excited about this color when Pelikan first announced it, I will admit, but was willing to give it a shot if it came up at, say, the year’s Pelikan Hubs meetup. Well lo and behold:

I kicked Ina-ho out of one of my fall pens and replaced it with Smoky Quartz. A wise choice. I keep typing “smoky quarts” which is something entirely different, like artisinally woodsmoked small batch quantities of milk.  Perhaps not a wise choice

It’s got just enough shading when writing regularly to keep me delighted while still remaining a nice, professional, time-to-stomp-on-some-leaves-and-chug-spiced-wine brown. No real sheen to speak of, but I’m content to have nice shading. You got me, Pelikan.

Advertisements




Pelikan Edelstein 2015 Ink of the Year – Amethyst

20 05 2015
There you stood in the doorway. You didn't have eyes, but I could tell you were looking at me

There you stood in the doorway. You didn’t have eyes, because you’re an inanimate object, but I could tell you were looking at me

I don’t believe in love at first sight. Not between humans, anyway. Between a human and a bottle of ink is an entirely different story. As soon as I saw a sample of the Pelikan Edelstein Amethyst, I publicly declared my love. And lo, like an inky cupid, Tom Oddo of Goldspot Pens offered to send me a complimentary bottle for review. Thank you, Tom.

Love is pure

Love is pure

The ever-so-slightly oddly shaped box (it’s not an exact rectangular prism; there’s an extra almond-shaped concave plane colored to match the ink within. Not cool enough for a picture, though) notes on the back that this is “extra soft ink.” I didn’t know that “soft” was an adjective that applied to ink. Wet, maybe. Colorful. Finger-staining.

The ink may be extra soft, but an actual amethyst falls about at a 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Actual gemstones not included with purchase

The ink may be extra soft, but an actual amethyst falls about at a 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness. Actual gemstones not included with purchase

The glass bottle is designed to be viewed. Is it a pleasure to hold in the hands, as is claimed? It’s heavy. Its four vertical faces curve ever so slightly inward. I think it’s more of a pleasure to hold a pen in the hand and use the ink rather than sit around clutching ink bottles, but that’s just me.

Also thanks to Tom for this InkJournal! Review eventually forthcoming

Also thanks to Tom for this InkJournal! Review eventually forthcoming

I’ve tried the Edelstein Amethyst in 3 pens so far (Pelikan M205, Sheaffer Lifetime Imperial IV, and my Lamy 2000), and I’ve loved it in every one so far. When an ink is well-behaved, there’s little to comment on. It flows perfectly. Though in the InkJournal the dry time was around 15 seconds or so, in practical use I haven’t smudged it up any yet. It doesn’t lend itself to fuzzing, feathering, or other ill effects on the page; even with crappy copy paper it keeps it pretty well together (excepting some bleedthrough, which, what else can you expect with crappy copy paper?)

I love my Leuchtturm1917 notebook, but trying to accurately represent cream-colored paper using subpar equipment is quite the headache

I love my Leuchtturm1917 notebook, but trying to accurately represent cream-colored paper using subpar equipment is quite the headache

The color itself is a warm sort of purple, containing more red than blue—it’s the warmest purple ink I currently own. Combined with the darker shading, it’s a beautiful ink. If it weren’t for the darker aspect, it might almost border on magenta. It almost matches a baggallini I’ve got, and if I could remember the actual model and color name that might help. But I can’t. Sorry. You’d know it if you saw it. Lovely color.

Every purple is a lovely color

Every purple is a lovely color

If you’re looking for a warm purple with decent shading, then you too can find true love.

Pelikan Edelstein 2015 Ink of the Year – Amethyst – at Goldspot Pens





Pelikan M205 Traditional Cremeweiss Body with Italic Nib

6 10 2014
I wish I could hand you this pen to write with, because if I did I guarantee the first thing you would say would be "WHOA"

I wish I could hand you this pen to write with, because if I did I guarantee the first thing you would say would be “WHOA”

Once you go crazy, it’s hard to go any other way. That’s the only explanation I have for why I bought this pen. I had no need for this pen. I simply decided that a Pelikan M205 would be an excellent idea and that an italic nib was exactly what I needed to have in it. These are not the thoughts of a rational actor.

I also wish I could hand you this pen so you could get an accurate idea of what color it is

I also wish I could hand you this pen so you could get an accurate idea of what color it is

This pen has everything I’m looking for aesthetically—the bare minimum of decoration, a dash of practicality, and a beautiful cream-white body.

On the whiteness of pens scale, it's sort of a warm off-white, with a hint of peach?

On the whiteness of pens scale, it’s sort of a warm off-white, with a hint of peach?

The cream-white is subtle, and blends beautifully with the pages of my Leuchtturm notebook. The size of the pen is satisfying—small, but not too small, long enough to write with posted (and the cap doesn’t hit my hand) or unposted. The pen is light, but well-balanced. If I needed to hand-write a novel, this wouldn’t be a bad choice.

It would use a heckuva lot of paper though, having to write so big.

It would use a heckuva lot of paper though, having to write so big.

The only thing I don’t like here is the newer Pelikan logo on the top of the cap. It’s printed-on sparkle, compared to the inlaid pattern on my 1988 M150. But I’m quibbling. As to the art deco-ness of the top of the cap, my feelings aren’t exactly sure how to feel. Intrigued. A little confused.

I feel like the most appropriate noise to accompany this picture is a blaring foghorn. Please imagine such as you view.

I feel like the most appropriate noise to accompany this picture is a blaring foghorn. Please imagine such as you view.

Now, let’s talk about this nib. Whoa. This is one wide italic. You say italic, I think crisp, calligraphy italic. This is not that sort of italic AT ALL. This baby is a broad, buttery italic. Not exactly practical for college ruled paper. But I love it, practicality be damned. It’s smooth and it shows off ink beautifully. And besides, these nibs are easy to swap out—the whole nib unit unscrews from the body. I’ve already bought a fine M205 nib for when I finally feel like being practical.

I have a feeling this logo will probably get worn off.

I have a feeling this logo will probably get worn off.

I got my Pelikan M205 from my local pen store, Office Supplies and More. They still don’t have an online website, but you can call in, ask for Alan, and work out an order (he might even still have one of this pen, this nib, this color). Or if you prefer to eschew all human interaction, the following online retailers all carry the basic M205 with various nibs, but I’ve only seen the italic nib available with the black body at Goldspot Pens.

Pelikan M205 at Goldspot Pens

Pelikan M205 at JetPens

Pelikan M205 at Pen Chalet (followers of the Pen Addict podcast will have heard of Pen Chalet before; if you don’t listen to the Pen Addict podcast get on it! And find out about the Pen Chalet discount for Pen Addict listeners)





Pelikan M150 – F nib – 1988 Edition

14 11 2013
This scan is the only one I've been able to just about 100% color correct accurately. Which means it will probably never happen again, and look completely abnormal on every other screen on the face of the planet

This scan is the only one I’ve been able to just about 100% color correct accurately. Which means it will probably never happen again, and look completely abnormal on every other screen on the face of the planet

When it comes to the pen display case at my local pen store, I’ve always got my eagle eyes on, carefully examining the case every visit to see if anything new has shown up. Where these mystery pens come from is not my concern—mine is to navigate the financial dance that will allow me to take the pen home. And thus, I brought home this strange, old Pelikan M150.

Hello 1980s product packaging design!

Hello 1980s product packaging design!

I have to start with the box, my first identifying clue. “M150/481 F”—and what do the other numbers (“915 181”) mean?—plus the pen’s color listed in four languages (German, Italian, English, and French).

Why is the word for guarantee in French?

Why is the word for guarantee in French?

Inside the paper box, a nice plastic case. Inside the case, (besides the pen), the “Pelikan Garantie” in seven languages, with picture guides for use of Pelikan writing instruments and nib types, and an extra bit:

I am going to guess that was written with a Sharpie marker, fine tip.

I am going to guess that was written with a Sharpie marker, fine tip.

An almost illegibly-smudged stamp, and a handwritten date, both of which also seem to be French. What is the significance of the date? Was it when the pen was made? When it arrived in some shopowner’s stock? I’m a pen user, not a detective, but I think it’s probably safe to hazard that this pen hails from the same year that I do. Remember West Germany? So does my pen.

At the absolute least, even if the date means absolutely nothing, the origin of this pen can be dated to some time within the existence of the country of West Germany. French involvement is also safely suspected.

At the absolute least, even if the date means absolutely nothing, the origin of this pen can be dated to some time within the existence of the country of West Germany. French involvement is also heavily suspected.

But enough attempted history, on to the pen itself.

True classic

True classic, no other word for it

Normally I go for silver accents, but I like the gold and black. It’s classic. The pen has a small, compact body, comparable to the Pilot Prera, but thinner.

The contrast! Modern vs classic! European vs Japanese! So different, and yet so alike!

The contrast! Modern vs classic! European vs Japanese! So different, and yet so alike!

Posted, the M150 is a little longer, but for me it’s still a comfortable enough size that I can easily write with it unposted. Or write with it posted. Both are good.

Even though there is ink in there, it's safe to say that unlike many of the ones I'm seeing on eBay, this one does NOT have a green ink window

Even though there is ink in there, it’s safe to say that unlike many of the ones I’m seeing on eBay, this one does NOT have a green ink window

The M150 is piston-filled, and has a perfect little ink window that you don’t even really notice until the ink is low.

 The F stands for FANCY

The F stands for FANCY

The nib is gold-plated stainless steel, European fine, with a surprising amount of flex to it (not that I can make any use of the flex, as I am a chronic flex failure). Still, I’m pretty sure most stainless steel nibs I encounter are of the zero-flex persuasion, whereas this little guy is like “FLEX? SURE! LET’S DO IT!” The nib also unscrews from the body for easy customization.

Maybe the F actually stands for flex, not fine. Or maybe the world was different back then. Ok, the world was definitely different back then, but you know what I mean.

Maybe the F actually stands for flex, not fine. Or maybe the world was different back then. Ok, the world was definitely different back then, but you know what I mean.

I will note that when the pen came into my possession, there was some kind of pockmark-like pitting on the nib, along the slit, that I don’t think is supposed to be there.

I assure you, that is not ink. If only I had a jeweler's microscope so I could really get a good look at it.

I assure you, that is not ink. If only I had a jeweler’s microscope so I could really get a good look at it.

That said, I don’t think it’s had any impact on performance. This pen writes beautifully, right away, every time. The flow is excellent, even when I try flexy writing it doesn’t skip out, nor is it too juicy when I go back to writing normally. The nib is more of a tactile feel, not slippery-skating, but rather the satisfying feel of the pen on the page. Never scratchy (except maybe when held perfectly perpendicular to the page while writing, that does feel a bit weird on the nib), there’s just that hard-to-capture feeling of WRITING. I love it. And the pen itself feels great to hold, floating weightlessly and timelessly in my hand, waiting to cast my spell of words on blank pages.

IT'S A PELICAN BEAK DO YOU SEE IT I NEVER REALIZED UNTIL I WAS LOOKING UP SOME STUFF ABOUT PELIKAN TODAY AHAHA VERY CLEVER

IT’S A PELICAN BEAK DO YOU SEE IT I NEVER REALIZED UNTIL I WAS LOOKING UP SOME STUFF ABOUT PELIKAN TODAY AHAHA VERY CLEVER

Where to get one, I’m not sure. Pen shows? eBay? Wave your hands around at the sky and hope one falls off a passing plane? All I know is I love mine.





Griffix 3 Ink Writer – Right Handed

10 08 2011

I apologize for this. I'm not even close to being right-handed. BUT I TRIED SO HARD.

I was very disappointed when quality control issues kept me from being able to accurately review the Pelikan Griffix 4 Fountain Pen, so I’m very excited to have picked up a Griffix Step 3, which is not as complicated and thus harder to ruin with sloppy production.

Hooray! Not ruined!

The idea behind the Griffix 4-step system is to indoctrinate train children from preschool onward in the skills needed for good penmanship. Step 1 is a wax pen, not handed, for learning to hold the pen and apply pressure. Step 2 is a pencil, now introducing the concept of handedness. The third step is the ink writer, designed to teach fluid writing in preparation for Step 4, the fountain pen.

Bonus whimsy and delight

The design of the Griffix combines delightful childlike simplicity with extreme ergonomics. At the far end of the pen are these little “fun buttons” (“For individual design”); the pen comes with two: one for you, and one for you to trade with a friend (encouraging children in the mechanics of social interaction and shrewd economics). They serve no purpose other than for customization, and to make it impossible, design-wise, to even hope to post the cap on the end of the pen. There’s also a place where you can apply the provided stickers with your name on it, in some theoretical magic world where so many kids have Griffix pens that the name-sticker and fun buttons are the only thing standing between you and utter chaos (/losing your pen).

The packaging only comes with ideological instructions, not actual instructions on how to put the pen itself together.

As best I can figure (operating without directions here), you HAVE to carry your spare cartridge around with you in the end of the pen; there is no other mechanism for keeping your primary cartridge in place to write. I think it’s a great idea, but it’d be great if I’d known that going in, rather than puzzling foolishly at my pen for 3 minutes.

For those with poor handwriting, the little smiley face is either inspirationally encouraging or depressingly mocking. At least you know when you've got the pen in the right hand.

My favorite part about the Griffix is the grip. Look at that grip. No, really.

I SAID LOOK AT IT

There is no room to screw this one up, no room for misguided interpretation as for what this so-called “pliers grip” is supposed to look like. The grip takes you gently by the hand, so to speak, and says reassuringly, “Here. Here is where your fingers are supposed to go.” It’s comfortable, and great for training yourself to develop the allegedly ideal “pliers grip”.

Time to take the cap off. And to look at that grip a little bit more.

Biggest problem with the Griffix: where are you supposed to put the cap? In your nose? A pen designed for children should be all over this cap issue. Or Pelikan should sell boxes of replacement caps, because there’s no way kids are gonna NOT lose this cap.

I think there is some kind of ink-emitting star in the center of the tip of the pen.

As the sun gives off heat in all directions, so too does this nib put ink to paper at any angle in which some part of the tip of the pen is touching the page. There is no finicky zone within which the pen must be held to make writing happen; it is a very forgiving pen. As best I can tell from photographing the pen and peering at it with an eye loupe, this tolerant nature is achieved through a 360-degree slotting pattern on the end of the pen. I’ve never had any pen like this before, so we’ve just hit the limits of the extent of my knowledge on slotted-end ink pens. I can say it’s great for writing, a very satisfactory feeling when this nib is moving along the page. It’s smooth, but not so smooth that your handwriting runs out of control.

If this is just for kids, then I am the biggest kid because this is a cool pen

I got my Griffix 3 at my local pen shop, Office Supplies and More. Unfortunately, they don’t have a website for people to buy from, and the only place I’ve found selling the Griffix online is this store called Bureau Direct, who I’ve never actually bought anything from. So, if you know of any other stores selling the Griffix 3 that I can link to, let me know and I’ll add them to this post!

 

Edit: here’s a store! Pen Fountain carries the entire Griffix line. And seems to be based in a currency on the other side of the ocean from me, so this one goes out especially to all my friends and followers for whom JetPens shipping isn’t so convenient! :)





Why I Can’t Review the Pelikan Griffix

6 07 2011

About a month ago, I came across and gleefully purchased what was, according to the packaging, a Pelikan Griffix Left Handed Kid’s Fountain Pen. The body of the fountain pen is indeed left-handed; the smiley-face is upright when held in the left hand, the grip indentations are leftward-oriented…but the nib is NOT a left-handed nib. I have a Pelikan Pelikano in both left- and right-handed models, so comparison was easy.

From Left to Right: Pelikan Pelikano Left-Handed Fountain Pen, Pelikan Griffix, Pelikan Pelikano Fine Right-Handed Fountain Pen

Do I even need to say anything? Look at the nibs. Which two look alike?

I tried emailing Pelikan as soon as I realized there was a problem, explaining the nib situation, asking if there was anything that could be done to rectify this egregious display of poor quality control, but I still haven’t heard back from them.

From Left to Right: Pelikan Pelikano Left-Handed Fountain Pen, Pelikan Griffix, Pelikan Pelikano Fine Right-Handed Fountain Pen

Do you see that nib? Not only is it the wrong handedness, but it is outrageously misaligned.

Were they even trying?

Sure, this is a low-end pen. But this is not the first time I’ve run into poor quality control in Pelikan’s basic pens (my left-handed Pelikano also had a misaligned nib). Why am I ever going to want to gamble my money on a more expensive Pelikan pen when I’ve had such poor experiences with their entry pens? There are plenty other brands whose inexpensive-end fountain pens are already pretty top notch; those are the brands that, down the line, I’m going to be willing to shell out the big bucks for.

Maybe one day, if I actually get a left-handed Pelikan Griffix fountain pen (doubtful, since I surely won’t be wasting my money on another one), then I’ll happily review it.





Mini Review: Pelikan Pelikano Green Right-Handed Fine Point Fountain Pen

9 05 2011

This is what happens when my right hand does the writing.

I snuck this in to a recent order from Goldspot pens, my justifications being “I want to try the fine nib” and “now I’ll have a fountain pen for all my right-handed friends to try! Maybe they won’t hold this one completely wrong. Maybe they won’t get ink all over themselves when they use this one.” The actual reason, of course, was “AW YEAH I WANT ANOTHER FOUNTAIN PEN!” You know how it goes.

The design is STILL APPEALING TO THE MAX.

I’m not going to rehash a review I’ve already done; we’ll just update on what’s relevant to the pen being right-handed, and the nib being fine.

THIS LOOKS SUSPICIOUSLY FAMILIAR

I didn’t have any problems using the pen to write with my right or my left hand; all was smooth in the Pendom, and sweet spots of writing were found in abundance. The nib is a nice, European-style fine. It’s a good width and it’s easy to handle. You can see in the close up that the right-handed nib differs from the left-handed nib, but it’s not to such a degree that opposite-handed writing is impeded by use of the pen. It just seems like you really feel the sweet spot when you’re writing with the nib that matches the hand you’re using to write; otherwise, the pen writes smooth but there’s that little extra oomph that isn’t there.

Turquoise: probably the best color, or definitely the best color?

Also, this Pelikan turquoise (giant ink cartridge) is utterly wonderful. The color makes me happy. This picture doesn’t do it justice. I’ll try to add a more justice-worthy picture later. The color is fun and rich, much like a playboy billionaire. And the turquoise looks good coming out of this bright green pen. I think that’s where the playboy billionaire metaphor falls apart.

Anyway, this is a great fountain pen in the under $20 range, and would make a great gift, provided I’ve already got that same pen for myself. I swear, the NEXT order I’ll get one for my friends.
Pelikan Pelikano Green Right-Handed Fine Point Fountain Pen at Goldspot Pens
Pelikan Turquoise Giant Fountain Pen Cartridge Refill at Goldspot Pens