In the era of erganomic keyboards, I suppose that using a fountain pen is on the quaint side. And let me qualify that when I say using a fountain pen, its for actual daily writing as oppose to pocket displays or for signing ceremonies.
Besides Chris, I am the only other person I know who still has use for ink bottles and blotting paper. It is a joy you know - inking paper, each stroke imbued with distinctness as pressure and angles form words and pictures.
Penmenship is not for posers. Nor it it bourgeoisie. Granted that it is nostalgic and romantic. A throw back to a time when pride was to be had in having a good hand and better care was accorded to word crafting, and backspace referred to a store room than a keyboard function. And besides, love letters are best written with a wet pen than a ballpoint any day.
My everyday cherry red Lamy Safari fountain pen has gotten quite a few second glances. Relatively inexpensive at below RM100, it is minimalist and writes like a dream. I think that this makes a very good introduction for fountain pen newbies. Better than getting the much cheaper Pilot beginner's pen which bleeds all over the place, turning frustrated students off what could be a truly wonderful lifelong love affair.
Anyway back to the Lamy Safari, it has a stainless steel nib without any fancywork. It is light having an angular plastic body that helps with the grip and is not at all unpleasant. I use the fine nib and am very satisfied with the ink flow.
Compared to my Lamy 2000, the Safari gives much more satisfaction. Despite the 2000 being of a different class all together being platinum coated and hand polished with a 14c gold nib, my Extra Fine is heart-breakingly scratchy. I love the Bauhaus industrial design design, yet I expected much better. I got mine at the Pen Gallery at the Weld, and even after sending it back after they gave me a less than satisfying nib the first time, I can't say that I am totally satisfied.
Will be going to Singapore to get the opinion of a nibmiester. Yes, that is the name and yes again, that is an actual profession.
In Malaysia, The Pen Gallery in the heart of Kuala Lumpur does stock a good range from Namiki to Montegrappa. Irritating thing is that the store does not open during weekends.
However for the Lamy, being fairly common, they can be bought at selected departmental stores which do offer discounts during sales. I got my Safari at Parkson with a 30% off and its a perfect pen. Only downside is that they may have a smaller range of nibs.
Yes, the geek is strong in this one.