Monday, May 4, 2015

Review: @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen

A cute little fountain pen - it's worth a go!


Body Material: Plastic
Trim: Plastic
Length (capped): 11.4 cm
Length (uncapped nib-end): 9.3 cm
Length (posted): 13.6 cm
Barrel Diameter: 12 mm
Section Diameter: 10 mm
Nib material: Steel
Weight (all): 10 g
Weight (cap): 4 g
Weight (body): 6 g
Fill type: Cartridge/Converter
Price: $2.95USD
Where to buy: JetPens

Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (1)
Simple and easy! Just a plastic sleeve.

Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (2)
Chibi. This is a small pen. Not as small as other small plastic pens, like the Pilot Petit1. The JetPens Chibi is a light green clear plastic fountain pen - and it's all plastic. The back end is rounded and the finial is smooth and flat, joined to the plastic clip. The clip widens as it descends, then narrows a little. It says in a white print. The section is smooth plastic, tapering gradually towards the nib and ending in a thin lip before the nib. The cap has a clear inner sleeve - the kind I usually hate on clear pens but it blends in on this pen.
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (7)

The steel nib is fine with a single slit and a breather hole. It is marked with Iridium Point Germany and has some flourishes.
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (5)
Instead of using the included ink cartridge, I fit a Monteverde mini-converter into the pen (inked with Pilot Iroshizuku Chiku-Rin). The nib wrote right away. Even with extended use, there was no skipping, no hard starting, and it kept up well even with fast writing and long writing sessions - no drying out. It wasn't too wet either, so drying times were quick.

With pressure, there was a fair amount of line variation possible, and the feed kept up quite well. That was fun and surprising.
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (10)
As for how the nib felt: I found the nib scratchy and quite crisp. It was properly aligned and it didn't catch on the paper and tear it or anything, so it wasn't terrible - but it was scratchy. Having only used one, I don't know if the other Chibis have nibs like this. I didn't find it so unpleasant that I didn't like using it, but it was impossible to miss it. If you like smooth nibs, this one's not for you.


The Chibi is the kind of plastic I enjoy the feeling of in hand. The clip worries me a little - I have not broken it but I might one day, of course. There is a small lanyard hole in the clip that is convenient, especially given the size of the pen. The clip is springy, but I was pretty careful when playing around with it.

The pen felt fine in terms of its weight when unposted. It's obviously a small pen though, so for those with larger hands, it will probably be too small. The cap posted by friction and it was nice and secure. I preferred using the pen posted since it was a more comfortable length.
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (9)
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (8)
The section is smooth plastic; I did not find it slippery, even with extended use. Since the pen is so light, I didn't find the small size of the section an issue.

I can see this pen not being a favorite for those with large hands, but it's still pretty usable when posted.
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (3)
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (4)
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (6)
Review @JetPens Chibi Mini Fountain Pen (11)

This is a pretty cute fountain pen. At this price, it's great to get you to the $25 free shipping mark, it's a cute little gift, it's a decent pen to learn/experiment with, but the nib could use some smoothing. Even so, for $2.95, it's hard to complain, isn't it?


JetPens said...

Thanks for the review Azizah! :D

Eva Yaa Asantewaa said...

I enjoy this pen, and thanks for the helpful tip about the Monteverde mini-converter. I agree with your assessment of the Chibi, including the scratchiness of the nib, which bothers me just a little, but I prefer the Chibi to the Platinum Preppy, which I've abandoned. For this sort of pen, though, the Pilot Kakuno is my baby. You recommended it, and I tried it, and it's fantastic. So, thanks for that!

chewy tulip said...

Ha - I put a Chibi in my cart just last night to hit the free shipping mark!

Hippycrite said...

This was a bust for me, especially compared to a Petit 1, since they are so similar in price and size. The one I got was so scratchy, it was actually catching on the paper a little and was just very unpleasant to write with. I have had several Preppy pens, and have had very mixed luck with them. A couple have been super smooth and nice, a couple have been really dreadful. Maybe the Chibis are like that, some good, some not.

Keith McCleary said...

I tried one as a cart filler to get free shipping. It was awful. Even after I aligned the nib. I tried one more, and while it wrote, it also ate paper with sharpness. I ended up tuning it nearly to a stub before it would write with anything like reasonable effort.

The main problem is, that at the $2.95 mark, it is more effort and expense to attempt a return than it is worth. This, to me, is a rare JetPens fail. With the number of complaints I can see on their review section for the pen, they should pull this and go back to the drawing board, or ship two pens for every one ordered, with the hopes one might work.

I love JetPens, and I am a loyal customer (dozens of orders spanning almost 10 years, and will continue to be so, but this one got under my skin.

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