Thursday, December 13, 2012

My Kaweco Sport Ice Green Fountain Pen

I am returning to this blog after a rather long hiatus. I’ve no excuses or explanation to offer. My life is like that. Something catches my fancy and I might spend days after days pursuing it and then suddenly I might lose interest in what has just been the centre point of my life.
This is about my new acquisition.
Kaweco is a very reputed German manufacturer of writing instruments. The Company started production in 1883 and has been making some remarkable fountain pens, pencils, ball pens, etc. The reputation of Kaweco as makers of fine writing instruments rests mainly on the top line of its products, mainly the Allrounder and Student versions. The newer Dia series have also earned a name for themselves.
However, it is the Sport model in different materials like plastic, Aluminium or carbon fiber that have acquired a somewhat cult status due to their cute design and colours. I was delighted to find the Kaweco Sport ICE version in striking colours available for sale on Flipkart in India. Though the Kaweco had been on my wish list for a while now ever since I had seen one in a pen store in London, somehow I never ended up buying one till now. Seeing them on Flipkart prompted me to order a green pen with a medium nib straightaway. As usual with Flipkart, the delivery was much earlier than the promised date, in this case 15 days. Hats off to Flipkart!

The pen comes in an unimpressive packing almost like the Noodler InkRoller Ball Pen. The black thin paper cover in black failed to impress and I am sure it can offer little protection. It looks more at home for housing some antiseptic skin cream than for a fine writing instrument. Once you open the top, the pen wrapped in a cheap plastic wrapper slips out.

The pen itself is a looker. Very cute design with a cap covering almost the whole pen. The open unposted pen is just 4 inches and the cap is 2.75 inches long. The cap and nib section are the same colour, in this case brilliant green. Kaweco Sport Ice is a transparent pen often referred to as ‘demonstrator’ in pen jargon. The rest of the pen is clear white.

The diminutive dimensions of the Sport Ice is deceptive. Once you post the cap, the pen is 5.28 inches long and feels comfortable in the hand. I have rather small hands and I often write with the larger pens without posting the cap. For me, therefore, the Kaweco posted is as good as other pens unposted. And very light too. The grip is the right size for the way I write and I feel very comfortable with the pen. Just to test, I wrote almost continuously two A4 size pages. I felt no fatigue or discomfort and that is when I have not written nonstop so long in a while.

Now the nib and its flow. The nib is a steel Medium one with the characteristic round emblem of the Kaweco Company stamped on it prominently. It is firm with little flex or pliability. Writing is smooth enough for my taste, though not in the class of Lamy or the Namiki Vanishing Point. I have heard some writers complaining of certain indefinable ‘chalkiness’ but it is OK with me. I find that nibs which are a little resistant tend to improve my handwriting. As such I am a lazy person and my writing is hurried. With an ultra smooth pen I tend to hurry along and in the deal spoil my writing.

The ink is through the standard International Cartridge, one supplied with the pen.  It fits in nicely when pushed against the nib section.

The inkflow is nicem neither too much nor too little: the right kind of flow I like. I must confess that I like the flow slightly on the more side than on the less. If ink flow is considered a conyinuum0 refresenting no flow and 10 complete gushing, then My preference would be 6 rather than 4. You know what I mean? This pen I consider 6.

Unfortunately, Flipkart does not stock the separate clip designed to go with all Kaweco Sport models. Clips are sold separately for about $2.5. I have to order it sooner than later. Because without it I cannot carry it in my pocket and the beautiful pen might remain in my brief case escaping the public admiration it richly deserves. Every time I take it out to write it turns many heads and more often than not at least a few people will stare at it and some bold ones may ask to see it and enquire about its origin and place of purchase.

A sample of writing with Kaweco Sport Ice Medium nib

Now the final word. Is it at the price it is sold on Flipkart worth it? Flipkart sells the pen at Rs.1183, which is actually less than the price in the USA rupee equivalent in US$. Consider this. For a few Rupees more I can get a Lamy Safari or a TWSBI Diamond 530. I would any day prefer the writing of TWSBI over the Kaweco. Safari is another class and one cannot compare it with Kaweco or for that matter with TWSBI. But I like the feel of Sport Ice in my hand better. 530 is a rather big pen and I have to hold the cap in my hand rather than post it. That apart, the Kaweco Sport Ice is a beauty and I am not sorry I bought it. Will I buy another Kaweco? Well I might try the Dia before I answer that.