This is the first blog in a series which covers a range of pens we recommend priced below R 500. Whether you are purchasing a fountain pen for the first time, gifting one to someone but unsure of the suitability, or simply not sure if a fountain pen is right for you we will, over the course of a few weeks, give you some guidelines and findings which might help you make the correct choice.
Platinum Prefounte Fountain Pen
A beginners' fountain pen for adults.
The Prefounte is a relatively new range to the Platinum Brand from Japan, retaining the basic functions of the ever-popular "Preppy" model, but aimed at the adult market with a higher sense of quality. Smart-enough for business and casual enough for everyday use.
Differing from the Preppy barrel which is clear, the Prefounte is available in five translucent colours (Crimson Red, Vermillion Orange, Emerald Dark Green, Night Sea and Graphite Blue). Furthermore, the metal clip presents a chic adult appearance - a further improvement on the Preppy. The resin barrel is devoid of logos and texts, maintaining the clear lines, but seems to be vulnerable to surface scratches. The pen comes in a simple see-through plastic box but still manages to indicate that it is obviously not a disposable pen. The pen has a nice weight, is balanced well and feels great when posted (for newbies, that means when the cap is placed on the back of the barrel, extending the length of the pen).
The "Slip and Seal Mechanism", which provides a spring-loaded inner cap seal, ensures that the ink does not dry out in the pen for up to one year (with the cap on). This feature is also available in the 3776 Century - the flagship in Platinum's range.
The nib is of stainless steel with an abrasion-resistant special alloy. Nib sizes are currently 0,5mm Fine and 0,7mm Medium. This pen tends to "gush" ink a bit more than the standard, it lays down a thick wet line, not too much, I actually like it, but it certainly writes a bit broader than what one may be used to. The 0,5mm medium writes more like a broad, so size down when buying this pen - order an F if you are used to an M and an M if you prefer B normally.
The feed, grip, section and cap are the same design as the Preppy so, should you want a different nib size to the two standard sizes, one could swap a different nib from a Preppy pen.
Ink is delivered to the nib via Platinums' proprietary ink cartridge (of which one Blue Black is supplied with the pen) however, a converter is available, at just under R90. Cartridges can be purchased separately.
For the more adventurous, a syringe and/or an eye-dropper can be used to inject ink directly into the ink reservoir, enabling the entire barrel to be filled to capacity, giving one a greater time between refills, and being visually more interesting. Using this method, an O-ring is required as well as silicone on the threads - both available separately.
Dimensions: 3cm Diametre; Cap 5,9cm; Pen without cap 12,1cm; Full length of pen 17,1cm.
Would I buy this pen?
Absolutely! All the colours.
Personally I would order the Medium since I prefer a Broad line.
At this price, one can't go wrong.
I would order the converters as well, and try to match the inks I use with each barrel colour.
It's a fantastic, everyday pen. One that won't break the bank and one that won't bring you to your knees if you misplace it, or drop it on the nib.
Do it, do it here: