My Short List Of Favorite Fountain Pens


Few new pens have landed on the Inkophile desk in recent years resulting in a scarcity of pen reviews. So a bit of pen praise will have to suffice.

Much as I enjoy a wide variety of fountain pens, certain ones stand out. The frequency with which they find slots in my rotation is the proof, but the ease with which I use them is just as telling. For stock nibs, Platinum is the clear winner especially the Century broad nib and the #3776 Music nib models.

My Platinum pens came from Dick Egolf of Luxury Brands a year and a half ago. Best gift ever!

The Century has never found its perfect ink companion. The #3776 has never met an ink it didn’t make look good. Funny how some pens struggle to find the perfect mate while others will mate with any ink perfectly.

The Pelikans took many years to collect and came from auctions and private parties. The M250 has a fine italic nib that might or might not have been modified. The M215 was ground to an italic as was the nib on the blue M200. The gray M200 has an oblique broad nib that was not original to the pen. The M400 has a stock fine nib that is amazingly smooth.

The Pelikans are a bit more finicky though work well with Waterman, Diamine and J. Herbin. Not that any brand won’t do, but I like less saturated inks in the Pels, especially those with ink windows.

Efforts to enable aside, both pen manufacturers make well-constructed pens of very different styles. The nibs from Platinum are more narrow than those from Pelikan, but that is typical of Japanese and western pens.

So that’s the core of my rotation. Other pens come and go especially the Namiki (Pilot) Falcons, a couple of custom Lamy Safaris and an assortment of single pens. I’m not a brand snob though I would gladly become one with enough of the right pens. Or at least I would like to try.

Just for fun, drool over these Pelikan and Platinum maki-e fountain pens. Are they not gorgeous?



  1. Love my #3776 Music nib, my Nakaya Naka-ai Cigar Housoge Kikyo Platinum Broad nib and my new metallic purple Pilot VP in Medium. The VP was from nibs.com and I think was personalised and is the best writing pen I own (and much better than my other VP).

    But my recent surprise is how much I love my 3 Pilot Kakuno medium (happy) nibs with Pilot blue and black cartridges and a converter with a Diamine Marine – a great write.


    • What a fun pen collection! I had to look up the Kakuno which looks like a worthy entry-level fountain pen. Diamine Marine is on my wishlist. For now Diamine Mediterranean Blue will do especially with the music nib. That’s a supremely happy duo.


  2. I have five Pelikan fps and this brand is my favourite by far. I did, however, recently get a Noodler’s Ink fountain pen (the Ahab) and it has a very similar writing feel to my vintage Parker Vacumatic. Just enough flex in the nib to make my writing look nicer than it has any right to be. The Pelikan nibs are mainly Mediums, but my M800 has a Broad Bold that’s slightly temperamental whenever I write an upper-case letter ‘C’. Maybe I’m still holding it wrong after all these years. It was an eBay purchase, so perhaps it came from the factory slightly less than perfect? I think a M600 with Fine nib might be on the horizon. And then, maybe that’s it. That’ll bring my fp collection up to a Baker’s Dozen.
    Nice collection you have there!


    • Ah, the M600. That one looks like the perfect size. I do hope you acquire one. ~enable~enable~enable~


      • I think you’re right about the size. The M800 feels quite large, and I can only imagine the M1000 would be like writing with a baseball bat. Something tells me the M600 would have me quoting Goldilocks.


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