Oh, hello. Finally! My review of the new TWSBI Eco! I wanted to spend some time with this pen before posting my review, because I've had mixed experiences with TWSBI in the past. I think they do some pretty cool things though, so I wanted to give this one an unbiased chance.
Body Material: Plastic
Length (capped): 138.8 mm/5.46''
Length (uncapped nib-end): 131.0 mm/5.15''
Length (posted): 166.0 mm/6.53''
Barrel Diameter: 12.5 mm/0.49''
Section Diameter: 8.8 - 11.0 mm/0.34'' - 0.43''
Nib material: Steel
Weight (all): 24 g
Weight (cap): 8 g
Weight (body): 16 g
Fill type: Piston-filler
Where to buy: Fontoplumo (also in black)
I generally like TWSBI's packaging - it's pretty compact, but it's also useful. The Eco arrived in a translucent plastic clip box. Inside, the pen, a plastic wrench, and some grease all sit in a foam bed. There is a little tag on the pen that warns against the use of rubbing alcohol to clean the pen - this clouds the plastic. There is also a paper guide for the pen, which is really useful, especially for newbies or those who are unsure of what to do with their fountain pen. Decent packaging, not completely wasteful.
I have to keep reminding myself to stop comparing the Eco to the 580 series. It's not the same pen or model! With that in mind...
The section is connected to the barrel, unlike the 580 (ok, I compared them there), in an all-in-one design, and is completely clear, just like the barrel. It is fairly thin and tapers towards the nib, ending in three flared ridges, forming a triangular shape (but it's not as triangular as that on a Lamy).
NIB & PERFORMANCE
I've had issues with 1.5 mm stub nibs running dry in the past, and I notice that only extra-fine to 1.1 mm stub nibs are available on this model - I won't speculate why, but I do enjoy the 1.1 mm nib a lot.
TWSBI warns on their Facebook page that after inking, or after removing the nib and feed, to blot the nib and feed to remove excess ink. I usually just expel a few drops after inking up any pen. Have you had any ink explosions?
Unlike the 580, the cap posted comfortable and securely. An O-ring holds it in place so it won't fly off. Posted, it is well-balanced and comfortable. Due to the added length, I could grip higher up where the section was not as thin, and I found this more comfortable.
This is a very interesting pen, especially given the price. You get a clear pen (for those of you who like to watch your ink slosh around), it's a high capacity piston-filler, it posts if you want, it comes with a wrench and grease, it's pretty affordable, and it's robust - so far. No tinkering, no messing around. It writes. Great for getting friends hooked, great as a gift. Not the most beautiful pen ever, not the most incredibly comfortable pen ever, but a lot of bang for your buck. So far, it's pretty darned cool.
If I had to pick between this and the 580, I'd pick the 580 because I think it's more attractive, but if you're on a budget and can't hit the price of the 580, the Eco is really not too shabby.
I received this pen 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. There are no affiliate links in this review. Stay tuned for Serious Nibbage - we'll give this pen away!