First fountain pen recommendation: Jinhao X450

Saturday, February 25, 2017

As you've probably realized, I still use fountain pens over ballpoints (although I confess to drafting outlines of longer documents with my beloved Pentel mechanical pencil).

One of the things that has always posed a problem is that  moment when someone asks to borrow a pen, and I have to quickly evaluate whether or not I want that person to use whatever pen is currently being rotated. Gold nib vintage pen, erm, no I don't think so. Lamy Al-Star, sure.

But surely as a fountain pen lover I should be trying to "convert" everyone and evangelize the joys of fountain pen usage. How do I do that? So I've been looking for a cheap fountain pen option that provides a good quality experience but won't break the bank. And I think I may have found it. This option is perfect for giving as a gift or keeping a spare in a desk drawer at work should someone express an interest. It is also a great option if you are intrigued and want to learn more about fountain pens without investing into something if you are unsure.

The Jinhao X450.

This pen is made in China. You can currently pick them up on EBay for as little as $4 CDN including shipping. The pen is quite heavy - one of the heaviest I own - so not a great option for a carry around, but it feels solid and sturdy in the hand. The finish is beautiful. There are several colours (mine is green marble) to choose from. Trimmings are gold coloured.

The nib is a large size 6 and has some flex providing some line width variation). My pen also included a cartridge converter so I can use either an international sized cartridge or can install the converter and use bottled ink.

Here is a writing sample using the Jinhao X450 Medium nib with Diamine Raw Sienna.

If you are thinking of buying a first pen for yourself or somebody else, you can't really go wrong with a pen that only costs $4 CDN. 

Please leave a comment if this post has been useful, thanks.

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