May 6, 2013

My Son's Dragon Fountain Pen

I got my son into fountain pens at an extremely early age, and he's now learning how to do long division using his Pilot Varsity pens. He peers over my shoulder when I'm "researching" pen-related goods on the Internet, and he says things like: "I like that see-through one" and "Can I get a pen that has one of those piston things inside it?" and "I like dragons" and "You know, Dad, I think that the extra fine nib on your Pelikan M205 is slightly more forgiving than the fine nib on your Lamy Vista due to the higher gold content, but you really need to stop whining about the line width and shading variation and simply pony up the big bucks, step up to the plate, and acquire one of those awesome Nakaya pens". OK, the last quote is fake, but he really is very interested in fountain pens. Really.

Being the swell dad that I am, I soon put "dragon pen for kid" on my acquisition list. I found a few cheap and cheesy looking fountain pens with dragon designs on them, along with this outstanding work of art from Nakaya: The Gold Dragon. I wish that pen would magically appear in the mail some day, but it won't. Sorry, son, it won't happen.

One day while browsing the I Sell Pens website for nothing in particular, I caught a glimpse of something that looked like a pen with a snake motif. That seed led to a fountain pen with an Asian dragon motif, and I was all over it. The product description could have read "Dragon Pen For Kid" - it was/is perfect. I was extremely happy about the price point, and immediately clicked the BUY ME, YOU CAN'T RESIST button. A few short days later, and this beauty was delivered to me:

The design and overall look of this pen is exactly what I was hoping to find. Are the quality, workmanship, and choice of materials at the high end of the scale? Of course not. Does it look freaking awesome to a third grader? Hells yeah. Seriously, just look at Awesome Dragon #1 (he lives on the cap):

But wait, there's more. Feast your eyes on Awesome Dragon #2 (he resides on the body):

Let me say a few words about the pen itself. First, the pen is massive, thick, and heavy (it weighs about 105 grams with a full converter of ink). Second, the cap screws onto the body and cannot be posted. Third, it looks awesome. The pewter colored design and clip work very well with the glossy black finish of the cap and body.

I don't know who makes this pen, and don't really care. It came with a converter, and it is compatible with standard international sized ink cartridges. I assume that the pen is made in China or Taiwan, although the nib says "Iridium Point Germany" on it (according to I Sell Pens, the nib is a Medium-Fine).

To be honest, both my son and I really like how this pen writes. The nib size, which seems to write more like a Medium or Medium+ than the advertised Medium-Fine, and generous ink flow contribute to a nice user experience. The pen writes very smoothly, doesn't skip at all, and produces a consistent flow of ink once it starts going. The last caveat relates to my only complaint about the pen; I don't think the cap has a good seal because it tends to dry out if not used every day. In fact, it was difficult to start a few times, but ink flow was great once it began. We loaded the converter with Sailor Jentle Sky High ink for its maiden voyage, but have since retired the converter in favor of ink cartridges (which are easier for my son to use). Here is a scanned writing sample:

PS - I didn't want to spoil the kid with such a cool writing instrument, so I held onto the pen for a while before giving it to him as a gift. The smile on his face when he opened the box was priceless to me. It's his favorite pen at the moment (but I haven't shown him the Nakaya Gold Dragon yet).


  1. Love this story. How great to surprise him with such a dragony pen! Well done!

    1. Thanks for reading, and thanks for the compliment.

  2. Can this pen be converted to an eyedropper?

    1. Good question. I'm not sure, but I'll take a look the next time my son brings it home from school.