Tag: pen review

Review: Jinhao Snake Pen


Last week, our friends from Everything Calligraphy sent over several new models of Jinhao and Baoer pens for me to play with, and play with them I did. My impression on the nibs are all quite the same across the pens. I think they’re all the same kind of nib (medium, steel).

Generally, Jinhao nibs are okay, but you have to be ready to do a bit of work on them to make them write the way you want them to. Sometimes you need to flush them with water to remove the manufacturing oils on them, sometimes you need to tune or smooth them out. Sometimes they work perfectly right out of the box.


The first pen that I will review is the Snake pen. It’s kinda hard not to notice these pens right away because of the very Slytherin vibe. The two snakes wrapped around the cap and the body, and the snake head on the finial make these pen very conspicuous.

Check out the details of the snakes below:

All the embellishment gives the pen substantial weight. In fact, it would be best to write with this pen unposted. The cap will make it very top-heavy. Without the cap, it’s still quite a weighty pen, but it’s not so uncomfortable to write with.


I like this color best. I think it looks a bit like pewter. I like the details of the pen, although it’s a tad too heavy for my hand. If Jinhao came up with a slimmer version of this pen, I’d be all over it.


The section of this pen is comfortably long in size, and it is made of smooth, hard plastic. The cap twists off, and as you can see, there are also threads on the end of the barrel.


This one writes pretty well. The flow is good and the nib is sufficiently smooth, although hard as a nail. It’s not springy, but it’s a consistent enough writer.

Overall, it’s a very intricately-decorated pen. If you like whimsical designs and don’t mind the weight of the pen’s pretty badass-looking snakes, this is a good buy.

Jinhao Pens are for sale at Everything Calligraphy.

Review: Bexley BX802 in Cracked Ice

I was looking for an inexpensive pen for Christmas, something that will not go over my allotted budget for it. Since I got acquainted with Bexley in the past months, I thought I’d try one of their entry level pens. I was curious about the BX802 because one of my pen friends has one in a Cappuccino design. I wanted that kind of design too, but sadly it wasn’t available anymore. Since the pen is out of production, I cannot order it directly from the site either. I didn’t want to pay full price for it, so I asked my pen friend who sells Bexley if he has the BX802 in any other color, and he said that he still has one in cracked ice. I Googled that up and I knew this was gonna be my Christmas gift to myself.


So this morning, this package came through Xend. My pen friend did a great job packing it, I think. It took a while before I could rip through all that tape and bubble wrap.


I think this pen’s box is a bit smaller than the box my Corona came in, I can’t remember (and I’m too lazy to dig for the box).


This little pen is quite beautiful. I’m not sure why Bexley pens aren’t very photogenic, but the design of this cracked ice acrylic is very pretty up close.

bx802-6      bx802-5

It actually looks like crushed white stone, and there are small bits of silvery, translucent flecks scattered about it. I gotta admit that I’m developing a taste for these hand-turned pens because they’re not very industrial and cold-looking, like they were picked out of an assembly line. Each pen, whether they came from the same acrylic rod stock or have the same materials, will be unique. There are no two pens that are exactly alike. Unlike when you buy pens like a Lamy Studio or similar pens–you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all.

Cracked ice
A close up of the cracked ice acrylic

Continue reading “Review: Bexley BX802 in Cracked Ice”

Review: Pilot 78G, Medium


I got this pen from last Saturday’s exchange gift at a mini pen meet with a few new pen friends. It’s a Pilot 78G with a medium nib, painted by one of our members.

My first impression on the pen is that it’s really light and the body is plasticky. I don’t mind it at all, I’ve been curious about these 78Gs for a while because a lot of my pen friends say that it’s one of the best entry-level pens. There’s only one store that sells Pilog 78Gs in the Philippines (Cosmos Bazar) and they’re always out of Medium nibs. They always just have the fine nibs available. Knowing Japanese nibs, I need a B or a BB to satisfy my preference for a European medium. Still, when I got this in the exchange gift, I was so happy. Not only was I gonna be able to finally try out a 78G, it’ll be my first Pilot fountain pen, and it’s got a custom paint job. I like it when artistic people take something that looks drab and plain and make it into something extraordinary and unique. It’s easy enough to buy a 78G, but having a good custom paint job on it makes it one of a kind.


That’s the barrel, or the end of the barrel. It looks much better in person, the little gold colored flecks are beautiful. It seems other members who have this custom-painted 78G have no problems with the paint fading or chipping off. The paint job is quite good.


The gold paint goes well with the gold-colored trims of the pen. Aside from the nib, I think my favorite part of this pen is the clip. The squarish, clip is beautiful. It looks sturdy and chunky, and I think it’s beautiful in its own simple way.  Continue reading “Review: Pilot 78G, Medium”

Review: Parker 45 (Fine), Truly a Classic Pen


I bought this pen last Saturday from a fellow collector for a very good price of P300. I wasn’t really expecting to use it because the nib is fine and I don’t really use fine nibs on my journal. My Muji journal’s pages are quite glossy and it doesn’t play very well with pens that have fine nibs or are dry writers. This was the first writing sample I took of it.


I  had to bear down on the pen to achieve an acceptable flow of ink on it, which made me think twice about using it daily. It was a very dry writer, and I actually only bought it as a partner to my Parker 45 ballpoint pen. I thought I was going to just add it to my collection, tuck it away and never get to use again.  Continue reading “Review: Parker 45 (Fine), Truly a Classic Pen”

Review: Ohto Poche, Fine


I was about to sleep around 2:30 AM today when I saw somebody post some pens up for sale in the marketplace of FPN-P. Am I glad I looked! Somebody was selling a Parker 45 (for P300!) and this cute little Japanese pen. I immediately messaged the seller and we arranged to meet later in the day.

I bought the Parker 45 even though the barrel’s design isn’t Harlequin because at a very good price, my Parker will already have a companion. The small pen, I just added as an afterthought.


My first impression when I saw it…”Gosh, it’s a tiny pen.” It’s pretty cute, though, and when you post the cap, the length is already comparable to a medium-sized pen. As thin as some Cross fountain pens, actually.  Continue reading “Review: Ohto Poche, Fine”

Review: Jinhao 601, Medium


I got two pens in the mail today, both Jinhao 601’s. These are my first Chinese-made pens. I must say that the presentation is quite unexpected.

P1040075 P1040077

The polyurethane box is quite presentable and snappy, and I like the white felt interior.. The pens themselves look surprisingly like Parker Sonnets. I guess that’s what they based their designs on? Continue reading “Review: Jinhao 601, Medium”

Review: TWSBI Diamond 580, Medium Nib


Today I will review the TWSBI Diamond 580, which I got from Scribe Writing Essentials. Being a new collector, I was at first very skeptical about getting demonstrator fountain pens. I’ve come to have a specific kind of idea on what fountain pens should look like and demonstrator pens didn’t strike me as beautiful. Needless to say, it wasn’t love at first sight.


Every time I would go to Scribe, I would take one look at it ignore it. Then some of my friends started telling me about this particular brand and model of fountain pen, and it piqued my curiosity. The great thing about Scribe is that they have super-helpful salesladies who will even volunteer to let you hold the pen, dip it in ink and try it out. So I did hold this TWSBI Diamond 580 and a few minutes after, I’m headed out the door with it.  Continue reading “Review: TWSBI Diamond 580, Medium Nib”

Review: Waterman Expert II – Medium Nib

There is an awesome story behind how I acquired this pen, but I will save that for another entry. For now, I’ll focus on a standard review. It’s my first review, so I’ll probably be going back to this entry and improve it in the future.

Waterman Expert II - 1

The Waterman Expert II is a very handsome pen manufactured sometime in the 1990’s. It came in many finishes, including a limited edition “champagne” finish. The one I got is a gift from a friend, and the color is French Blue. It has a lacquer-covered brass body which gives it the pleasant heft that it has as well as the glossy look.Waterman Expert II - 2

It has gold plated clips and accents, and a two-toned gold plated steel nib. It takes any international long cartridge and Waterman converters.  Continue reading “Review: Waterman Expert II – Medium Nib”