09 October 2015

Top Five Giveaway Fountain Pens



This weeks Friday Top Five is Giveaway Fountain Pens.  I am doing this one before the Top Five Starter Fountain Pens for 2 reasons:

1) I have found that a lot of people will be introduced to fountain pens by someone else and don't usually just go out and pick up the hobby (of course there are exceptions... I decided in high school that I was going to write with fountain pens without anyone encouraging the hobby.)

2) I just bought a bunch of fountain pens to give away, so the idea is on my mind...

My guidelines for a giveaway fountain pen are dependent upon whether or not I will be around the pen as they start to use it, and how much time I have to tinker with it before I give it away.

If I am going to be around, I don't mind giving away a piston filler, or cartridge converter, because I have bottles of ink they can refill from.  If I do not have time to tinker, than I am not going to give away a really cheap pen that might not start writing well out of the box.

#5 The Hero 616

The Hero 616 is cheap, really cheap.  It is a replica of the old Parker '51.  Apparently some parts are interchangeable, but I haven't tried.  I usually buy these in a pack of 10 from China, because I have to work on them before I give them away.  Some of them won't work, but most of them can be put into use with a little bit of micro-mesh, a razor, and some shellac.  This tends to be one of the last ones I give away, but if I have been using my Parker '51, then I give these away so they look like the pen I have been using.

Pros:  
  • Holds  enough ink to get a starter by for a while
  • Has built in converter
  • Does not dry out quickly
  • Classic Look
  • CHEAP
  • Comes in several colors
Cons
  • Poor build quality
  • Stiff nibs that need work
  • Can leak

#4  The Platinum Preppy

The Platinum Preppy is one of those quintessential give away pens.  These pens can be bought from any major vendor.  They will take Platinum's proprietary cartridge, their converter, or can be converted to an eye-dropper.  Some people prefer the Platinum Plaisir, but I like these.  Most of mine are converted to eye droppers, but then if they break or come unscrewed... it is a BIG mess.  

Pros:  
  • Holds a decent amount of ink
  • Will take Cartridge or Converter or Eye-dropper
  • Does not dry out quickly
  • Clear demonstrator
  • CHEAP
  • Comes in several colors
  • Decent Nib
Cons
  • Cheap plastic can break
  • Can leak
  • Looks very "kiddy"
#3 The Dollar 717iT

No, the Dollar Pen does not cost just a Dollar.  The Company's name is Dollar.  This pen comes from Pakistan, and generally can be purchased from eBay for just a few dollars.  It is a piston filler, has a decent nib, and comes in several colors.

Pros:  
  • Holds a decent amount of ink
  • Piston Filler
  • CHEAP
  • Comes in several colors
Cons
  • Will only take bottled ink
  • Can leak around the section
  • Not always easy to get
#2 Pilot 78g


The Pilot 78g is one of my favorite pens, not just to giveaway, but as part of my every day carry pens.  These have surprisingly good nibs, normally have decent flow, and look nice.  They are not always available in the U.S., and when they are they are 10-15$

Pros:  
  • Has built in converter, but can also take cartridge
  • Great Nib
  • Classic Look
  • Comes in 3 colors

Cons
  • Hard to find in U.S.
  • Not as cheap as other options
  • Painted on gold bands will wear away
  • Does not hold a lot of ink
#1 Pilot V-Pen


The Pilot V-Pen is sold as the Varsity in the U.S., but I like the styling of the V-Pen better, and since my last name is Voboril, it's just better.  These are disposable fountain pens, and they are really pretty amazing.  No they can not be refilled, but the nibs are very smooth, they are super cheap, and they never ever dry out.  I have never had a hard start or even a skip, that I can remember.

Pros:  
  • Holds a lot of ink
  • Does not dry out, period.
  • Great Nib, smooth as butter
  • CHEAP
  • Comes in several colors

Cons
  • Disposable
  • Disposable
  • Disposable
I give away more Pilot V-Pens than any other.  When someone is ready to move up to a starter pen, I usually help them with that too.  To me, a starter pen is the gateway to the fountain pen world.  If someone picks up a $400 pen, or sometimes even a $30 pen as their first fountain pen, they will be hesitant to use it all the time.  These pens are pens you use every day, and if you loose it, or break it, you don't sweat about it.

1 comment:

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