This pen and the Hémisphère are the current holders of Waterman’s least expensive pen indication; on the company’s website, it has but one of a possible five hexagons of costliness. The main difference between the two pens is size; the Expert is the wider of the two, and thus somewhat more in touch with the current fashion for out-sized pens. Both have a certain harkening-back to the C/F in their design, with an obliquely angled top to the cap and a clip obviously modeled from the older pen.
There have been three versions of the Expert. The first had a somewhat more interesting point decoration than the later, a less busy cap-band decoration, and a plastic body as opposed to the current brass. The differences between the latest and the second are mainly small amendments in design, like different width cap bands and the appearance of upscale trim versions called Precious and Deluxe. Update: An informant writes to tell me that his Expert I has a brass insert in the barrel, so the difference in weight between earlier and later models is probably not as substantial as the preceding suggests.
I am going to take a moment to editorialize: while the Expert is currently just about the least expensive item in the Waterman stable, I question somewhat the value for money one is getting from it. The point and thus writing performance is essentially indistinguishable from that in the Phileas/Kulture, while the price is between two and four times higher. The suggestion is, at least in my mind, that somewhat more brass and a bit of paint are worth the difference in cost, and that reveals a little of the direction that Waterman is being driven by its current masters.
Production Run: 1994 – present; the transition to the Expert II happened in time to make it into the 1999-2000 price list.
Cost When New: One Hexagon, according to the Waterman site. Looking at retailers in late 2011, that apparently means $128 to $175, depending on trim level. Update The site has done away with the hexagons of relative price, but one still has to look elsewhere for actual prices, which now range from $160 to $190, despite the inclusion of the word “Precious” in the name. The earliest price for the Expert II was $120, regardless of trim.
Size: 14.2 cm long capped, 12.4 cm posted, 15.0 cm uncapped.
Point: Steel, sometimes plated
Body: Plastic in Expert I, brass in Expert II and III.
Filler: Cartridge (international pattern) , capacity approx. 0.6 or 1.4 ml.
If you are relying on the preceding information to win a bet or impress a teacher, you should read the site’s scholarly caveat. Remember, this is the internet, and it’s full of bad information.