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Looking for starter fountain pen

How about the humble parker Vector, loads of colours and finishes, easy to get hold of, either cartridges or convertor. Both plastic and metal bodies dirt cheap too.
 
If you are serious, get a restored Parker 51, they are built like tanks. You can get restored ones for a hundred bucks, and there are millions of them out there.
 
There are rabbit hole oriented forums for fountain pens as well. They might be helpful re go to pens/inks/papers for those of the left hand persuasion.

The task would be to find a left hand friendly pen (nib), as well as an ink/paper combo that dries fast so if the left hand travels over written text, it does not smear etc.
 
Noodler's X-Feather would be one to avoid for lefty's. When selecting inks in the future, look for "fast drying time".
 

BigFoot

Androgynous Pistoleer
Moderator
I clicked purchase on a Pilot Metro with some extra cartridges. This will get me started and if I progress I will likely upgrade. I am guessing fountain pens can be a deep rabbit hole? I am prone to falling in these kinds of holes. But I must say it does look Interesting. Thanks for all the suggestions and ideas.
Rusty I am so thrilled we were able to send you down another hole. Wait until you start mixing vintage pens with nicer modern ones. Then you will be officially screwed. 😂
 

Rusty Blade

Ambassador
Rusty I am so thrilled we were able to send you down another hole. Wait until you start mixing vintage pens with nicer modern ones. Then you will be officially screwed. 😂
I've already been reading up on how to restore vintage pens. Once this lockdown is over and I can get to my local antique stores...watch out!
 

tankerjohn

A little poofier than I prefer
What is the nib on the Pilot Metro like? I wondered if you would get a nice writer at that pricepoint.
IMHO, the nib is the best part of the pen. It’s got a nice bounce for a steel nib. I’d use mine more if it wasn’t so narrow; I didn’t realize at the time that Japanese fines run much narrower than Western fines.
 
When I returned to fountain pens, I bounced around a little: Lamy Safari, but the nib was scratchy and non-responsive; a sterling silver Montegrappa, my grail pen, a little too heavy for daily writing and of course it didn't leave my desk; a black plastic Kaweco Sport Classic, which I liked fine.

Then I lost the Kaweco: so I ordered another, and I won the lottery. Best nib I have ever used, clean, responsive, never thins out or skips. It's a smaller pen, so maybe not perfect for those with really big paws. For me, the perfect pen. I love it. My search ended.
 
I clicked purchase on a Pilot Metro with some extra cartridges. This will get me started and if I progress I will likely upgrade. I am guessing fountain pens can be a deep rabbit hole? I am prone to falling in these kinds of holes. But I must say it does look Interesting. Thanks for all the suggestions and ideas.
Which colour ink did you end up getting in the end? And how are you getting on with the Pilot?

If/when (it is technically possible to have just one fountain pen...) you decide to upgrade, I'm sure you'll get plenty of recommendations. Rather than adding to them, I can put together a list of the things that I've found are important to consider before buying a pen. Let me know if that would be useful.
 

Rusty Blade

Ambassador
Which colour ink did you end up getting in the end? And how are you getting on with the Pilot?

If/when (it is technically possible to have just one fountain pen...) you decide to upgrade, I'm sure you'll get plenty of recommendations. Rather than adding to them, I can put together a list of the things that I've found are important to consider before buying a pen. Let me know if that would be useful.
Still waiting for pen to arrive. This pandemic has really slowed delivery times.:bored:
 

Doc4

I'm calling the U.N.
Moderator Emeritus
I used to recommend the Pilot 78G, great daily user, I like it much more than the heavier metal Metropolitan. The Japanese made ones -- I've read and understand they are now made in China and the quality isn't quite there any longer. Some older ones are still out there and maybe the new production isn't all bad.

View attachment 1100024
(pic from Peyton Street Pens)
That was my go-to recommendation as well. I bought a bunch, too, and use them regularly. By the time they were un-discontinued, I had basically stopped buying pens ... so never got a “new” version to compare.
 
I would not recommend the Safari ( that was our first as well ) for the reason described above.. its just too cheap (scratchy) to be usable. The proper intro compromise that will not be a waste of your money are the "cheap" pilots. Pilot is really good at making functional and usable pens without making them "posho/fetish" pens. The Pilot metro is the fun /usable and doesn't break the bank. The other thing to stare at / think about is what kind of pens do you love now? To be obvious here is : do you like big bold thick gel pens as you have a heavy hand (this is me to be honest)? Then you want to aim for a thick ink and wide nib. Do you write in the equivalent of 6 pt (my wife) then pick the smallest nib you can find .. etc etc

Avi
 

bach_rocks

Contributor
I can put together a list of the things that I've found are important to consider before buying a pen. Let me know if that would be useful.
Fenlander, your list of considerations before buying a new pen would be useful to me. I have a Metropolitan, and was given a Lamy 2000 recently as a gift. I started with Pilot Varsity disposables, which I still really enjoy. Regards, Lane
 
My suggestion is unchanged for a few years and it applies to people who like the idea of a fountain pen but do not want to spend a lot of money for something that is used once and then put away.

The Jinhao range of X450, X750 and 159 are excellent value for money and can be bought for about the same price as a cup of coffee and should last 100 years. IMHO they are good looking and write very well, all three use the same nib which is a big smooth nib with good flow.

I have used pens for years and I have Montblancs, Parkers and Pelikans but that doesnt stop me having one of these Jinhaos somewhere in the house full of ink.

You have to spend quite a lot more money to buy a pen that is significantly better.
 
I would not recommend the Safari ( that was our first as well ) for the reason described above.. its just too cheap (scratchy) to be usable. The proper intro compromise that will not be a waste of your money are the "cheap" pilots. Pilot is really good at making functional and usable pens without making them "posho/fetish" pens. The Pilot metro is the fun /usable and doesn't break the bank. The other thing to stare at / think about is what kind of pens do you love now? To be obvious here is : do you like big bold thick gel pens as you have a heavy hand (this is me to be honest)? Then you want to aim for a thick ink and wide nib. Do you write in the equivalent of 6 pt (my wife) then pick the smallest nib you can find .. etc etc

Avi
Wow. Your experience with a Safari and mine are completely opposite. It is one of the two smoothest pens in my small collection.

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk
 
Wow. Your experience with a Safari and mine are completely opposite. It is one of the two smoothest pens in my small collection.

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk
Two things come to mind, if the pen is not smooth from new, it is a simple matter to take the pen baack, it is the job of a few seconds to change the low priced nib.

If it is an older pen, check that the alignment is correct, if it is bad, personally and with this nib I would change the nib, if it is okay under a loupe then have a look on Youtube as to how to smooth a nib, there are many different techniques ranging from flint to polished stones and arkansas stone.
 
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