This is one of the newer Graf von Faber-Castell inks. Yellow-greens especially darker ones have always been my favourite range of colours. Olive Green is unsurprisingly totally my cup of tea. Filling it in a wet nib the Pilot Custom 823 Waverly nib is the best combination. How this ink shades! It goes from a dark almost black green when ink pools to a muted lemon grass green sort of green. I really enjoy this ink a lot. It writes a little on the dry side so pair this ink with a wet nib.
Graf von Faber-Castell
My thanks to Louisa for the ink sample.
Graf von Faber-Castell Midnight Blue is very much traditional blue black ink, rather a dark blue with a strong grey undertone. It shades easily and rather wet for a Graf von Faber-Castell ink. That’s really unexpected. This is a suitable colour for corporate use in terms of its colour. Graf von Faber-Castell Midnight Blue is a step above a standard blue or black ink because it’s not boring or devoid of shading.
Length (capped): 132mm
Length (uncapped): 123mm
Body Material: Wood and metal
Nib Material: 18k gold
Filling Mechanism: Cartridge / converter
Colours: Brown or black wood
My thanks to Louisa for lending me this pen. I’ve been eyeing this particular pen ever since I had a chance to try it out a long while back when Louisa first got the pen. Leave it to Graf von Faber-Castell to work so well with wood as a material. They are one company that consistently incorporate wood as a material in their standard pen line up. Remember the Ondoro I reviewed a long time ago?
Packaging: Graf von Faber-Castell is a premium fountain pen brand and it shows in their packaging. The wooden box looks deceptively simple. The logo of Graf von Faber-Castell is printed in a silver tastefully small size on the top of the lid. Lifting the lid, you will see a white bed with space enough for 3 pens. It’s elegant and classy. The box can easily fit onto anyone’s table and double up as a small 3 pen box. Weirdly, the pen doesn’t come in the wooden box. It comes in a cardboard box separate from the packaging itself. Regardless, I really love the way the wooden box looks and feels. This is one of the best packaging out there.
The Graf von Faber-Castell Intuition Platino Wood (from here onwards referred to the Intuition Platino) comes in 3 colours namely the Grendilla, Ebony and Pernambuco. The first two are still available from retailer but the last will be way harder to find brand new pieces.
The Intuition Platino has a long shiny silver cap, a finger print magnet for sure. The clip is prominent and has a spring hinge for easily clipping. The top of the cap features the Graf von Faber-Castell logo. The words “Graf von Faber-Castell and Handmade in Germany” are etched at the other end of the cap. The cap can be posted to the end of the pen but it will cause the pen to be back heavy.
The snap on cap pops off easily and closes with a satisfying click. More on the cap later. There is no centre band on the pen because the barrel is a seamless single piece of fluted wood. At the end of the barrel is a ridged silver twisting mechanism that released the converter and nib unit from the barrel.
The wood barrel feels very nice to the touch. There is the additional nice touch of a tapering of the barrel towards the nib then it flares slightly before the nib. It forms a natural grip section for your fingers to rest on. I really appreciate this part of the design. The 18k bi-colour nib is nice and large and it compliments with the size of the pen. The scroll work on the nib is one of the prettiest I’ve seen in a while.
Now the special thing about the pen is the twisting mechanism at the end of the barrel. Twist that knob, the nib section with converter rises from the barrel. Once the entire section is freed from the barrel you can pull it free to wash or refill the ink as required. Once you have completed your task, re-insert the converter and nib unit back into the barrel and turn in the opposite direction. The nib will move back to its original position. This is certainly one smart way to prevent ink from staining the wood barrel by totally moving the operation away from the barrel itself.
Now the writing experience itself is a total joy. I love the EF nib a lot, really a lot. Can you tell there is a big fat but coming? BUT the ink is constantly drying up in the nib even though the cap is capped on properly. Sometimes it hard starts, other times it dries up so much that it causes feathering on ink and paper combination that has never has this problem before. This is one serious flaw.
Personally, I think the buyer has the right to be picky, more so for a pen of this price. It is retailing for £695 on Cult Pens. This isn’t a cheap pen, yes it writes flawlessly. Actually one of the best EF writing experience I’ve ever tried but this one flaw is a real deal breaker for me.
One other flaw that Louisa has encountered is the twisting mechanism sticking. Through her own experiments she has concluded the mechanism is highly sensitive to temperature. It takes about a week in standard non-air conditioned Singapore weather for the mechanism to get stuck. Sometimes she has to “cool” down the mechanism just so that she can twist it.
I started my journey with this pen as one that is on my to buy list. I ended it with disappointment, utter disappointment. This is supposed to be a premium fountain pen and it looks for all the world to be one. It writes like one as well. However, the hard starts and ink drying up is a big no go for me. Add the sticking mechanism makes this pen out of the question for me. My wallet is definitely thanking me though.
- Wonderful writing experience
- That wooden box!
- Beautiful wood barrel
- Interesting mechanism
- Hard starts
- Drying ink though capped properly
Graf von Faber-Castell is a teal shade with a strong grey undertone. It’s quite similar to Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine but Graf von Faber-Castell Deep Sea Green is darker and grey-er. It’s a dry ink with a good dry time and it also shades well in the right pen. It goes from a pale grey-green to a dark green. Personally I prefer this over Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine. Which is your favourite of the two?
Length (capped): 134mm
Length (uncapped): 125mm
Body Material: Resin and metal
Nib Material: 18K Gold
Filling Mechanism: Standard international cartridge and converter
My thanks to Gautam for loaning me his pen for review.
Graf von Faber-Castell is the big sibling of Faber-Castell. They carry the high end stationary which includes fountain pens. In general Graf von Faber-Castell fountain pens are gold nibs fountain pens with snap caps. They tend to be #5 sized nibs as well. Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is no expection.
Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is mostly cylindrical except the cap. The cap is mostly straight but it flares outwards at the top of the cap. The cap, grip, clip and end finial are made of polished metal making this pen one finger print magnet. The clip is spring loaded and is shaped with an upward curve at the tip. It is easy to slip the clip over most items.
The cap pops open easily and closes with a click. The cap can be posted on the barrel but it changes the balance of the pen drastically. Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is well balanced maybe a little front heavy because of the metal grip when it is unposted. When the cap is posted, it makes the entire pen very back heavy.
The barrel is made of black precious resin and has been engraved with a chevron pattern and then polished, giving it a unique texture and look. The pattern makes the Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche looks eye-catching but yet understated at the same time.
Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is a slim-ish fountain pen. The grip is no different. Though the grip is long and concave just the way I like it, I found the grip too thin. I am always gripping the pen too tightly for fear I lose control of it. I would much prefer the pen to have a wider grip or maybe a heavier grip section so that the weight might ground the pen in my hand.
Like all Graf von Faber-Castell fountain pens, the Guilloche takes standard international converter and cartridges. For the price that one of these Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is going for, it might be pricey for a cartridge / converter fountain pen. However, the cartridge / converter filling system is one of the most reliable and require the least amount of maintenance. I don’t consider it a negative point that an expensive pen doesn’t have a “special” filling system.
The nib of the Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is a wonder. It is smooth and has great flow. If you pair it with a wet ink, it would be writing on glass smooth. Even when I had initially filled it with OMAS Green, an ink on the dry side, it wrote beautifully. The nib carries the Graf von Faber-Castell logo front and centre, along with the nib size and the carat. It isn’t the most elaborate design out there but it is still a beautiful nib.
The Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche is a great writer but the silm grip would be a problem for some. The nib more than makes up for the annoyance of the grip. However the price might give me pause to get one for myself. The Guilloche older sibling, The Intuition Platino Wood is speaking to me instead.
- Smooth nib and great writing experience
- Understated design
- Finger print magnet
- Slim grip
I got this ink in early November 2015. This is my first bottle of Graf von Faber-Castell ink. It came in an impressive looking bottle with a generous 75ml in it. It’s going to take me a long time to finish it. Stone Grey is a dry ink. I’ve initially filled it in my Pilot Myu 701. It writes but it made my nib feels scratchy. Stone Grey shades slightly. It never veer into the “too light” zone that I don’t like. Stone Grey is a cool grey not warm like how Pilot Iroshizuku Kiri Same is. This dry ink would probably work best with wetter nibs.