Friday, 14 November 2014

A surprising cheap find

I wasn't hoping for much when I bought two Dollar demonstrators from seller syedht45 for a little short of three quid. I like demonstrators, they were cheap, I thought I'd have a bit of fun.

They came in a little clear plastic wrap. Not a particularly inspiring packaging, but when a pen is this cheap, what do you expect?

They were quite light. The pistons (yes, that's right, two piston filling fountain pens for three quid) seem a little loose and fiddly. But they work. The caps twist on and off with just about half a turn, three quarters at the most, to get them nicely tight. The machining is pretty decent, the clip is robust, the tolerances are tight - these are not scrappy pens with sloppy workmanship. The inside of the cap on the black section pen is just a little blurry, but otherwise, they are good little pens.

I filled up one with Pelikan Brilliant-Gruen and one with Diamine Pumpkin.

Goodness. I'd expected an experience like the dreadful Montex Handy, my worst ever fountain pen. What I got was the smoothest nib I've tried since I got my hands on a Sailor zoom nib to try out. I'm not exaggerating; even the gorgeous Waterman broad gold nib on my Lady Elsa has a teensy bit of edge to it, and my favourite Lamy 2k has just a bit of feedback, but these nibs were smooth, smooth, smooth.

I suspect the plastic may, like that on the Pilot Crystal, be prone to cracking; it feels a little thin and brittle. But frankly these pens are a steal. At this price I could afford a new one each month and still have spent less by the end of the year than I'd need to buy a new Carene or a new Edison. Crikey.

**** After a month's use: They're still going strong. But I have to say they are not demonstrators for OCD people; for some reason the caps have become disgustingly dirty, far more so than on other demonstrators that I use. The piston mechanism on the other hand is leak-proof and efficient. 

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