Thursday, June 25, 2015

Review: TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte

Thank you to La Couronne du Comte for sending this pen for review!
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (8)
ABOUT

Body Material: Plastic/Aluminum
Trim: Metal
Length (capped): 143.0 mm/5.63''
Length (uncapped nib-end): 130.2 mm/5.12''
Length (posted): N/A
Barrel Diameter: 12.3 mm/0.48''
Section Diameter: 9.4 - 10.9 mm/0.37'' - 0.43''
Nib material: Steel
Weight (all): 32 g
Weight (cap): 10 g
Weight (body): 22 g
Fill type: Piston-filler
Price: € 69,00
Where to buy: La Couronne du Comte
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PACKAGING

I'm not really a fan of packaging, but I think TWSBI nails it with theirs. The cardboard box has the TWSBI logo printed on the top. Inside, a clear plastic case is foam-padded and houses the pen. There is a user guide included on top the case. The case is taped shut. After one battles with the tape, the lid can be removed. Then pen sits on a small display stand within the case. Next to it, underneath the white part, TWSBI includes a wrench and liquid grease for you to maintain the pen yourself.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (1)
It's attractive, solid, little waste packaging. I also like it because it's consistent across their pens, which looks organized and uniform.

APPEARANCE

I've had some iffy experiences with TWSBI but I cannot say this is not a pretty pen. The pen is clear, round, and has fairly flat, rounded ends. The finial is slightly raised and has the TWSBI logo in it. The shiny metal around it really highlights the red of the logo. The clip is simple and unmarked - it is nice and long, which I like. The center band is on the end of the cap; it is wide, with two grooves running around it. In between these, TWSBI Diamond 580 Taiwan is etched in the metal. Tidy, tasteful. The cap is clear, round, and has a grey inner cap that is a little clear still, so at least you can see your nib. While I usually dislike these inner sleeves because they often are solid and conceal the nib on clear pens, this one doesn't look terrible.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (2)
The barrel has long diamond facets around it. I really like how this looks - it almost glitters, and ink looks beautiful inside. There is a metal ring before the piston-turning knob. Inside, you can see the matte purple aluminum piston through the body, which matches the section.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (6)
The section is round, smooth, and tapers slightly towards the nib. There is a metal band before the nib, and part of the black nib collar sticks out at the very end.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (10)
I think this is a very attractive pen, so as long as you don't hate purple or clear pens, it's quite nice.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (11)
NIB & PERFORMANCE

The steel nib is a FINE. Yep. And I actually like it! It has a single slit and breather hole. It is engraved with the TWSBI logo, TWSBI, F, and some flourishes.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (7)
I wasn't really sure what I was thinking picking a fine. As it turns out, I'm really glad I did. The fine gave a little bit of feedback, and I love it. It was very pleasant and it offered that ''fountain pen'' feeling. The fine was also precise, crisp, and put down clean, consistent lines. It was not excessively wet, but I actually found it wetter than I was expecting. Drying times were not too long.
With some pressure, the nib produced a surprising amount of line variation. The nib snapped back quickly as well. Of course, it was not meant to flex, but this does make writing more fun.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (14)
The nib did not skip or hard start, and it was well-tuned upon arrival. Overall, I was quite pleased with the performance.

IN HAND

The clip is snug but springy, so it is actually pleasant to use.

The section is smooth, but the shape isn't my favorite. I ended up gripping the ridge right at the end, and that hurt a little. The threads at the back of the section are a little sharp, but not horribly so - easy enough to ignore.

The purple portion of the section rotated easily, which was noticeable during longer writing sessions, as I kept rotating the pen to readjust my grip. Not a big deal, but I occasionally had to tighten it.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (9)
The cap can kind of sit on the back of the piston-turning nob, but I would hardly call that posting. I found the pen comfortable and well-balanced unposted. The barrel and section are a good diameter as well - not too thick, not too thin. Not my favorite section shape, but that's okay.
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (3)
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (4)
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (5)
PROS & CONS
Review TWSBI Diamond 580 AL Purple Fountain Pen @TWSBI @CouronneDuComte (15)
OVERALL

I've had some negative TWSBI experiences prior to this (cracking on multiple pens, flow issues), so I was a bit apprehensive about trying another one. I'm really happy to have had this opportunity though because I'm pleased with the experience so far. I really like the 580 model, and the AL colors are a lot of fun. The packaging appeals to me as much as packaging can, it's a lot of bang for your buck, and so far, no cracking. Presumably, this new material has resolved this issue? I hope so, because I really enjoy this model.

I received this item free of charge for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. Everything you've read here is my own opinion. No affiliate links.

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GourmetPens by Azizah Asgarali is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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