Favorite 5: Modern Pens

It’s been a little over six months since I first picked my Favorite 5 modern fountain pens, vintage fountain pens, and inks. In looking over those lists I find that only the Modern Pens list has significant changes, with four pens bumped off the list. In my defense, all 4 replacements are new since I published the first list. The Vintage pens and ink lists are holding up so there’s no need to update those lists.

1. Pilot Custom 823

The Pilot Custom 823 has the classic cigar shape that I love. The large 14K gold nib has enough spring to add to my writing enjoyment without making me feel like its talents are completely wasted on me. It’s a large pen but light and seems custom designed for my hand. Add its large ink capacity and it defines a perfect pen for me. Here’s my review.

Pilot Custom 823 not posted

2. Franklin-Christoph Model 66

The F-C Model 66 is the only holdover from my first Fav 5 list. As I said then: The design is simple, but it fits my hand perfectly and it’s a great writer. Rohrer & Klingner Blau-Schwarz is my ink of choice for this pen which I converted to an eyedropper filler. The pen wrote consistently well for over a year without needing a cleaning. I just kept topping off the ink supply. It was a strong contender for the top position but didn’t quit make it. My review is here

Franklin-Christoph Model 66

3. Pelikan M101N “Lizard” SE

A new acquisition that seems like it should be too small for me to appreciate. It’s one of the few pens I regularly use posted, which should also be a strike against it. Despite these two strikes I love this pen, I writes great. Here’s my review.

photo of the uncapped Pelikan M101N Lizard uncapped

4. Pilot Vanishing Point Maplewood

The Vanishing Points almost made the list the last time, but I wasn’t using them enough. While practical, the metal bodies weren’t all that comfortable during extended writing sessions. That all changed with the Maplewood Edition. No review yet.

photo of the Pilot Vanishing Point Maplewood Limited Edition

5. Kaweco AL Sport Raw Aluminum

Kaweco AL Sport Raw Aluminim posted

This pen made the list simply because it’s used so much. It gets carried every day and used nearly every day, even if only for short notes. The raw aluminum has been banged up a bit since it’s a pocket carry but that gives the pen character. There’s a converter available but I’ve stuck to cartridges since they hold more ink. It’s reviewed here.
Wrapping Up
I’m pretty fickle when it comes to fountain pens. The ones I like the most tend to be the ones I’m using or used most recently. So I’m sure this list will be different in six months, but for now these are solidly in the top five.

4 thoughts on “Favorite 5: Modern Pens

  1. I’m a recent convert to the 823 that I got from nibs.com. I share your view of a great pen. Still getting used to the air gap I have to leave in the plunger or it dries up quickly

    • Luckily I had some experience with the filling system on the TWSBI 700 so I was used to it. For some reason I have a habit of forgetting to close it up when I’m done. Luckily (or maybe by design) I haven’t had any problems when I forget.
      Enjoy the pen!

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