Rotring Core Lysium XS

I bought this pen on e-bay a few weeks ago, as a low-end pen that I don’t have to cringe when lending out to someone.

I like fountain pens, but I’m by no means an expert in these matters.  Even still, I know that I’m not supposed to let other people use my pen because the pen nib breaks into my handwriting as a pair of shoes breaks into my feet.  Unfortunately, I was getting an ever-increasing reputation as a bitch who doesn’t even let people use her pen.  So I got a sturdy, inexpensive pen that I can lend out without worry.

What a great little investment!  As you can see, it looks nothing like a traditional fountain pen, which balances out my pen collection.  The nib is super thin, and the ink flows beautifully.

You can’t see it in this picture, but the grip-part is depressed into the barrel, so that when you’re holding it, your fingers are flush with the largest part of the barrel, and not sticking out on top.  Also, the slope supports your fingers from sliding down the pen when writing for long periods of time.

The lid is really big and heavy, so I wouldn’t suggest posting the cap when writing, and it’s made of permeable material, so if you get any ink on it, it will likely stain.  The lid is made of rubbery material, so if you clip it to anything, it will stay put for the whole day.

Another downside is filling it.  The feed is quite large compared to the nib, so you tend to make a mess when you fill it, and you often end up with ink all over your hands.  But it’s totally washable, so it’s not a big deal.  I find that the first couple of uses after a fill results in inexplicable ink stains on my hands as well.

There’s this unique feature called “write-on” and although I’m not sure how the mechanics of it works, when you’re writing and you find that you’ve run out of ink, you can unscrew the barrel from the grip until you hit resistance, and that action lifts the cartridge/converter so that you can keep on writing.  Pretty cool, eh?

I hope that by lending out this pen, I can help more and more people switch to awesome fountain pens.

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