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I bought this pen with a fine nib. I really like this pen, and am really frustrated with it. The pen looks great, and seems solidly made. I like its weight. It has a nice solid feel in the hand. I like the diameter and the length of it. It looks and feels like a pen that costs much more than it does. I would be inclined to buy another Narwhal pen, except....
This has to be the driest nib in history. Out of the box, when dipped in ink to test it, it wrote OK, but with a very fine line, as Japanese and other nibs do. That is to be expected. Then I inked it up, and it just scratched the paper. I applied more pressure than I usually use, and the pen wrote just a bit. I tried multiple inks, including inks that are too wet for some of my other pens. There was some improvement. I reread reviews from multiple sites. This seems to be a common complaint. One reviewer somewhere talked about buying a new #6 nib from another supplier and then liked the pen with the new -- not Narwhal -- nib. Once I knew that was a possibility, at the risk of damaging the nib, I flossed it with a brass sheet that is ultra thin. There was some improvement. And then I stumbled upon a Youtube site by Sbrebrown on how to "fix" a dry nib. With trepidation, and very gradually, I did what he recommended, and it has worked. It took multiple attempts. The nib now has a reasonable ink flow and writes smooth.
I now like this pen! But no buyer should have to do this much adjustment to a new nib, and many may not be up to the task.
My sister was visiting the store last week, and on a whim asked her to pick up one of these in Marlin Blue. Very nice package, beautiful pen body and cap, perfect weight for me, and I love the clear ink viewing ring. Filled right up on the first draw, and the nib is very cool. I put it on some Rhodia, a Clairfontaine, and a Tomoe River pad and the thing writes as well as pens costing a lot more. A sweet surprise. I am not crazy about some of the other colors but this is a real serious pen, and would take it over some of the TWSBI's I have based on the nib alone. Super smooth with a nice full wet line. Nib is a bit stiff but is still a pleasure to use. I am really very surprised and pleased at how nicely the pen performs.
Aesthetically it is a very attractive pen, appears to be well made. I liked the idea of the ink window but found inking the pen somewhat of a challenge and ink flow not what I prefer.
I picked this up in Marlin Blue with a M nib. The material is fantastic. I've been eyeballing the blue for more than a year, but it still exceeded my expectations with interesting chattoyance but moreso a deep blue color that seems to have an internal glow. The build quality is great and the piston works smoothly. The overall design is attractive; I like the ink window and the "coin" in top of the cap. It's a fairly large pen and very comfortable in the hand. Aesthetically, the nib is really lovely--the design of Narwhal's new engraved nibs is great. Nib performance is okay. I've only used it with one ink so far--Diamine Earl Grey--and it's my first time using the ink as well, so it's hard to parse out what's nib and what's ink, but so far it's a little drier than I prefer. No hard starts or skips, just not as much flow as I like. I'll probably tweak that after I give the pen a minute to warm up. Anyhow, great pen, I recommend it.
Besides the name, I love the colors (I got the Asfur Bronze) and it's a good size for my hand. I like that it's a piston filler and you can see how much ink is in there so you're not caught by surprise by an empty pen. It seems like a well-made pen overall.
On the less positive side, the nib is a bit scratchy and doesn't write all that smoothly. I've tried it on several kinds of paper. It takes a fair amount of pressure to get a decent line (something that might change over time, I hope) and frequently skips on the upstroke, so it's a little frustrating to write with. It's ok for sketching. I really want to like it and will keep trying, but this isn't going to be my go-to pen unfortunately.