Chinese fountain pens are getting better. This steel-nibbed Lingmo also comes in some very nice packaging. It writes with a not too fine line and my sample is VERY nice, if not quite as smooth as my Pilot Prera. The plastic body does not feel cheap at all. The Lorelei obvisously wants to mimic Sailor pens from Japan.
I have yet to figure out what cartridges can go with it. Neither Pilots nor Internationals seems to fit, so you might be stuck with the included converter that works quite well. I could imagine that original Sailors might fit.
I have included a size comparison shot with my Pilot 74 demonstrator. The Lingmo is a rather small pen with a slim section. People with big hands might have a problem with it.
Being quite impressed with it, I have already ordered a second one of these in acrylic blue. I hope the quality control works well on these pens as they are quite eye-catching.
Another gold-nibbed Pilot has joined the family and it is just as amazing as its dark blue counterpart. Pilot nibs are great and prove that you do not need to spend that much money to get into the gold-class. These pens can be had for under 100 dollars at your doorstep shipped from Japan, even including customs fees and taxes. This is a demonstrator transparent model. Granted, there is not much happening in a cartridge/converter FP and it looks a bit silly with the cartridge in it, so I will set this one up for a converter. As it is, there is almost enough room for an emergency cash bill in the clear plastic barrel 😉
When I first saw pictures of the F.C. Loom on the web, it did not strike me as especially beautiful. Most versions have somewhat garish colors for their caps and the shiny barrel did not look so appealing. I had read good things about their steel nibs, though.
One day a matted “Metallic” look version (i.e. adult variant) was available for a very good price (well below 20 Euros including shipping) and I wanted to give it a try.
The section and cap of the Loom, which is probably made in China, are plastic, only the barrel is metal. Some owners say the cap is fitted super-tightly. Not so on my sample. It is merely a secure fit. The clip is spring loaded, as all clips under the sun should be.
PROS : The B nib that I chose is really butter-smooth and puts down a fat and wet line. Quality control on these nibs must be great, as users make the same experience all over the world. The Loom takes standard international cartridges or converters and is really not an expensive FP. It is super reliable, skip-free, does not dry out easily.
CONS : I find the section to be a bit on the slippery side. The barrel will scratch easily if you use the Loom in the posted mode. Though it is not a light pen (32 grams with converter), it has a somewhat cheap feel to it.
I think the F.C. Loom´s aesthetics and ergonomics are splitting the crowd. It is probably in direct competition with the Lamy Safari. A tough job. I do not find myself using it for extended periods of time, so it remains to be seen if it will find a permanent home with me.
Black with silver accents and a broad 14K nib and dark blue with golden accents and a 14K medium nib, these Japanese pens produce a nice subtle line variation, but they lust for high quality paper. Rhodia is always a good bet. Also, their nibs can be removed for cleaning (something a Montblanc FP will not allow…), though I would not recommend ripping them out whenever you change inks, as they are only press-fitted. On a Pelikan Souverän, they can be unscrewed and screwed back in all day long.
I´m not really bitten by the pencil bug yet, but I had to try these … and I love their simplistic looks. B or 2B is my comfort zone, I believe.