Maker: Noodler’s Ink.
The initial Noodler’s piston-filler came with a point made to match the size of the #2 points found in vintage pens, at least in as much as size variations between the old manufaturers allowed. The idea was to offer a modern, robust body to allow the points from things like the Waterman 52, or even 12, to be used without fear of the main body of the pen collapsing. This was good news for those with the old points on hand, but there was still a problem. Not only did not everyone have one of those points, not everyone dared to try using them. A robust body but an elderly and fragile point? Still too much to worry about.
This pen is the solution to the problem. The body is more or less the same as the original Noodler’s Piston, but the point is specially adapted for flex. Rather than pursue a difficult and costly metallurgical solution, Noodler’s has been very clever and gone a mechanical route. The slit on this point is uncommonly, even abnormally, long and extended so far towards the tail of the point that it end of it is hidden inside the section. One saw similar mechanical differences between flex and non-flex pens in the past (the point parade on my Skyline page probably gives the best sense of it), but this exaggeration of the principle means that a fairly sturdy set of stainless steel tines can be convinced to flex well. Usually steel points with flex are more prone to corrosion, and gold is corrosion-resistant but rather malleable, so this is a good step forward.
This pen is similar in hand to the Osmiroid 75 and Reform 1745; some modern users may think it too slim, but as the owner of slightly larger than average hands I don’t find it problematic. The performance is a little hard to rate. For everyday writing, it is fine. When one starts to try to get it to do the flex trick, there comes some small trouble. Because the point and feed are easily removed, adjustment of the flow is relatively easy, but without the adjustment there is a little trouble keeping the point supplied with ink. This is somewhat dependent upon the ink in use, but can also be addressed by amending relative position of the feed and point. One can also do rather more permanent adjustments by carving the feed a little, as in the Ahab, but that steps outside the comfort zone of a lot of users.
Relative to vintage pens, this is at best thought of as a soft semi-flex pen. That’s still pretty flexible relative to the modern standard, and I rate these pens as well worth the money and will recommend them outright as a good training platform for dealing with the seriously flexible points some vintage pens offer.
Production Run: 2010 to present.
Cost When New: Noodler’s suggested price, $14.00.
Size: 13.2 cm long capped, 14.0 cm posted, 11.9 cm uncapped.
Body: Vegetal Resin.
Filler: Piston, capacity approx. 0.9 ml
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