Thursday, April 3, 2014

Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens

Thank you Sebastian for sending this calligraphy set for me to review! I have wanted to try this out for quite some time (and try my sad hand at calligraphy)!
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Body Material: Plastic
Trim: None (unless you buy clips separately)
Length (capped): 10.5 mm
Length (uncapped nib-end): 10.0 mm
Length (posted): 13.1 mm
Barrel Diameter: 11.0 mm
Section Diameter: 10.9 mm
Nib material: Steel
Weight: 10g
Fill type: Cartridge/Converter
Price: $69.00USD
Where to buy: JetPens

Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
The Kaweco calligraphy set comes in a metal tin with a clear window, inside a cardboard sleeve that slides off the tin. Inside the tin, there are felt molds that hold the individual components in place - one pen body nd three extra nibs, as well as three nib covers, and two boxes of Kaweco ink cartridges. This packaging is ideal - there's little wasted space, it's functional and utilitarian, and it's not hideous. It is also good for storing the calligraphy set when not in use.
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
The calligraphy set comes in a tin, within a sleeve. The tin is like all the Kaweco tins, except much larger of course, and has a cool window so you can see some of what is inside. Opening it up, all the pieces are nestled in a felt plastic bed. The set includes one Kaweco Classic Sport fountain pen in the black body (or white if you select that package), with three italic calligraphy nibs - 1.1 mm. 1,5 mm, 1.9 mm, and 2.3 mm, along with two boxes of Kaweco Pearl Black ink cartridges. Each nib is a nib and section and  it comes with three protective nib covers to protect the additional units from drying out should you have a cartridge inserted in them.
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
The Kaweco Classic Sport is the black body version of the pen. This pen is a compact pocket pen with a simple design. The top of the cap has the Kaweco medallion in silver, which matches the Kaweco script on the side of the body. The body is hard black plastic with a screw-on cap that is also postable. The barrel and cap have eight sides, which smooth out towards the ends. The section is small, but then, it is a very small pen, and it flares slightly towards the nib.
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
The nib is a simple small steel nib. The size matches the rest of the body well. The Kaweco logo is stamped on the nib, along with the size of the nib. There is a single breather hole and one slit running to the tip of the tines.
Kaweco Calligraphy Nibs
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
These calligraphy nibs are steel and were quite pleasing in their smoothness. It's very convenient that you can have all four units inked at the same time, with different cartridges, and that the protective covers keep the ink wet while not in use. The nibs perform well - putting down consistent lines. Generally with calligraphy-style writing, I tend to go slowly, so the ink flow keeps up pretty well, particularly with the smaller sized nibs. The 1.9mm and 2.3mm nibs are a little larger and demand more ink flow so they can run dry. Slowing down fixes this problem. Using particularly smooth paper makes this issue feel more pronounced - perhaps because the nib glides too easily. At a slow, steady pace, which is a pace I usually write at when I'm focused on putting all the little tails and all that in the right places, ink flow is not an issue. Since I am not all that great, it's hard to say if this would be an issue for others. Nevertheless, I'm very pleased with the sizes and size range of the nibs offered. I would prefer wetter flow, but I love juicy, really wet flowing pens in general.

Please disregard the blocks by the ink. I completely wrote the wrong thing. It's Kaweco Pearl Black.
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens
Review: @Kaweco Calligraphy Pen Set - Black Body @JetPens

In hand, the Kaweco Classic Sport is very comfortable for me. I can use it both posted and unposted, but it's very small unposted so I always use it posted. It's just the right length and diameter when posted, and fits comfortably in my grip. I never find my hands growing weary of writing with it. It's not heavy and its balance is nice. This is a versatile calligraphy set. The Kaweco Classic Sport is just a plastic body though, and it does have a bit of a cheap feeling to it. The problem is, after using the Al-Sport and the Al-Sport Raw Aluminum, the Classic Sport is a bit disappointing in comparison. Nevertheless, the price point reflects this, so that's just something we must accept!

  • Interchangeable nib units - more economical than purchasing one of each pen.
  • Convenient that four units can be inked with different colours.
  • Protective nib covers are a great idea. 
  • Can change nibs mid-project without getting your fingers all inky (and thus, transferring ink from fingers to your nice clean project).
  • The Kaweco Classic Sport is a plastic body - it can be scratched and damaged, and it doesn't compare to the Al-Sport and the Al-Sport Raw Aluminum, but this is what comes with the set. 
  • Protective nib covers should be sold separately. Easy to lose.
  • Larger nib sizes (1.9mm and 2.3mm) run dry.

Well, the most common calligraphy nibs out there, other than the Kaweco nibs, are probably those of Lamy. I also own those. The Kaweco calligraphy units are superior to the Lamy in a few ways: there are four sizes available in the Kaweco range (1.1 mm1,5 mm1.9 mm, and 2.3 mm) and only three in the Lamy (1.1mm1.5mm, and 1.9mm). The Kaweco calligraphy nibs are complete units - nib and section are interchangeable, so you never have to get your fingers messy if you want to change your nib mid-project, unlike with the Lamy nibs, which are nibs only. Furthermore, the Kaweco units allow you to have four different sections inked, whereas with the Lamy, you have one pen inked and change the nib alone.

Some may prefer that the Lamy nibs are on full-sized pens as opposed to compact, pocket-sized pens. Others may prefer the Kaweco pens because they are compact. It's up to you.

Both Kaweco and Lamy nibs are German-made steel nibs, so they are comparable in terms of consistency, size, and wetness.


I had wanted this set for such a long time and it was often sold out at JetPens. I longed for the white set but did not have the guts to try it. I think the price is reasonable for this set. At $69.00USD, you get a pen, four nib units, three protective covers, and 12 ink cartridges. To get roughly the same thing from Lamy, you could get the Lamy Joy Calligraphy Pen + 1.1mm nib that comes with a converter ($29.00USD), two additional nibs at $10.75USD each, and say a bottle of ink to go with that converter, at $8.75USD. Total price from Lamy is $59.25USD, and you're still missing one nib size. They're comparable in price and performance, but the Kaweco has a few perks that Lamy doesn't offer, mainly that you can have four units inked with different colours, and that you can change nibs without getting your fingers all messy.

If you're looking for a calligraphy set, this is a fun choice and a complete set so you don't have to worry about finding all the parts, so to speak. You could even pick up a few Kaweco converters and use the bottled ink of your choice. Write slowly to prevent your feed from running dry.

I received this pen for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. Everything you've read here is my own opinion. There are no affiliate links in this review.


Janet Salmons said...

Calligraphy nibs fit all Kaweco Sports like the pretty cobalt blue one I reviewed here:

I have a couple of Kaweco's and they have a reliable flow. I carry one in my purse because I know that even after a couple of days of non-use it will start right up. Great value for the price, and with these cool nibs, creative too!

Lesley said...

Great review! Just the information I was looking for. :0)

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