Thursday, January 21, 2016

Review: Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand Fountain Pen @couronneducomte

This is a ridiculous pen. You have been warned. Ridiculous in that I am insane.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (22)
ABOUT

Body Material: Resin/Mother of pearl
Trim: Platinum-plated
Length (capped): 146.3 m/5.76''
Length (uncapped nib-end): 125.0 mm/4.92''
Length (posted): N/A
Barrel Diameter: 7.5 - 12.8 mm/0.29'' - 0.50''
Section Diameter: 9.6 - 9.9 mm/0.37'' - 0.39''
Nib material: 18KT Gold
Weight (all): 70 g
Weight (cap): 28 g
Weight (body): 42 g
Fill type: Piston-filler
Price: € 2.550,00
Where to buy: La Couronne du Comte (Discount code: GOURMET10 for 10% off your purchase, but as required per Montblanc, does not include... Montblanc.)
La Couronne du Comte Banner
PACKAGING
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (1)
I really don't like to like packaging, but the Moon Pearl's packaging is truly complete, magnificent presentation.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (2)
The box is quite large. Scratch that. As far as pen boxes go, it's huge. A solid off-white box that says Montblanc on it begins the experience. The lid opens to reveal the main box - a large, heavy, solid grey box. This one has a brushed metal plaque on it, engraved with Meisterstück Moon Pearl/Montblanc. It's solid, tasteful presentation so far.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (3)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (4)
The inside of this box is a cushy black velvet. There is a thick black pillow between the lid and the inside to pad all the goodies beneath. There is a set of Montblanc Oyster Grey correspondence notes and envelopes in silky tissue, a bottle of Montblanc's Oyster Grey ink, a rosewood pen display stand, and the Moon Pearl. This is a lovely and complete set of goods to get you going right away - all that is missing is a pen pouch.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (5)
I love how complete this presentation is, whether this would be for yourself or for someone else, it's just beautiful. This blows Pelikan's presentation out of the water (for a pen of the equivalent price).
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (6)
APPEARANCE
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (9)
The Montblanc Moon Pearl is a Meisterstück 146 LeGrand body with some added size, though it's not as large as the 149. This is a cigar-shaped pen, tapering towards the ends, with rounded off points. The finial is the Montblanc snow cap in a lovely mother-of-pearl, set in black resin.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (10)
The clip is attached externally by a ring around the top of the cap. The clip is the same as that found on the regular 146 - it's quite simple, with no markings, but I like it as it sits close to the cap and doesn't stick out very far.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (16)
The center band is very pretty. It is three smooth, wide bands with two recessed, brushed metal spacers. The middle of the three wider bands is engraved with Montblanc Meisterstück. The end of the barrel has a large piston-turning knob. The section tapers into the cap threads, and remains straight towards the nib.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (7)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (8)
The cap and barrel are made of a black resin base with full and complete strips of a mother-of-pearl Tahitian Black Lip Oyster. The colors of the shell selected remains around a shimmering silver and at certain angles, moves into blues, greens, and purples. Moon Pearl is the ideal name for this pen - the deep black, shimmery silver shell, and the rhodium-trim make for beautiful contrast. It's gorgeous, but isn't over the top. (Except for the price.)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (17)
It floats my boat.

NIB & PERFORMANCE

The 18kt gold rhodium-plated nib is a medium. It has a single slit and a round breather hole. The nib is engraved with 4810, the Montblanc logo, the gold content, and some flourishes. As usual, Montblanc did not indicate the nib size.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (14)
This medium nib arrived well-tuned and perfectly adjusted. I didn't even need to flush it. The nib is smooth but not glassy, and ink flow is wet and consistent. The nib does not skip or hard start. It is a comfortably juicy nib - not a gusher, so it doesn't take forever to dry. I love that I can rely on this nib to write. It isn't a super soft nib, but some line variation can be squeezed out if you need some.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (23)
This is the kind of nib you use when you want a pen that will write every time - what a lovely experience!

The piston operates very smoothly. When being capped, the cap glides closed and locks into place, without over tightening, and the stripes then line up. Nice attention to detail and it's a delightful mechanism. Great performance overall.

IN HAND

The clip is snug, but can be used. It's better that the clip is snug on this one, given the pen's weight.

The section is shaped like that on the resin 146 - round and straight to the nib, ending in a blunt edge. It isn't a sharp edge, and there is ample gripping room. The metal threads are not sharp but they are metal, so if you were to grip them, you would notice them. It is a metal section and although it isn't slippery, it is a heavy pen and there isn't much to hold on to (ie. indent/ridge). I find it best to hold it closer to the threads and extend my fingers up the barrel - this gives me the best control over the pen and nib, and it's most comfortable.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (11)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (12)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (13)
Unposted, the pen is certainly substantial - it is quite heavy, and it is definitely heavier than a resin 146. It is fairly well-balanced, but I still notice the weight. Fortunately, there is no need to post it, and it does not post.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (15)
This is a lovely, warm pen to hold. I like how it feels in hand, and it's beautiful. It's likely to be uncomfortable for those with smaller hands, or those who prefer lighter pens, or pens that can be posted.

It is not significantly larger than a 146, but side by side, you can see a small difference. The Moon Pearl is a little thicker, and is heavier in hand.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (18)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (19)
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (20)
PROS & CONS
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (24)
OVERALL

A very expensive but beautiful pen. There's no getting around it - the price is a huge, rather painful, absurd premium for the name. Piston-filler, 18kt gold nib, mother of pearl, all that aside... it's expensive. It writes perfectly. I can't really justify it. It's crazy. Good thing I love it and use it constantly.
Review Montblanc Moon Pearl LeGrand FP @couronneducomte (21)

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