ABOUTBody Material: Aluminum
Nib material: Steel
Length (capped): 6.1"
Length (uncapped nib-end): 5.28"
Length (posted): 6.7"
Barrel Diameter: 0.46 - 0.50" (flat surface to round surface)
Section Diameter: 0.36 - 0.48" (flat surface at smallest point to widest point)
Nib material: Steel
Fill type: Lamy cartridges/Lamy Z24 Converter
Price: € 26,90 (VAT included)
Where to buy: Fontoplumo
ALL CUSTOMERS: GOURMETPENS
PACKAGINGLamy offers straight forward, simple, low-waste packaging for the AL-star fountain pens - small, grey, cardboard boxes that keep the pen safe from scratches, but doesn't take up too much space. I like it.
APPEARANCEThe Al-Star is a full size pen - it's nice for many users because it's not a small pocket pen, but it's not oversize - it's just right in between. A proper, full size pen! The ends are blunt, but slightly rounded off, with black end plugs. The finial is a cross on this AL-Star, indicating at a glance that this is a fountain pen. The cap is completely round, whereas the rest of the body has two flat surfaces - one with LAMY engraved on it, and the other sides are rounded like the cap. The clip is built into the cap; long, sleek and curved outwards at the end.
NIB & PERFORMANCE
The steel Lamy nib is small and simple, with a single breather hole and slit, engraved with Lamy and the nib size. These are interchangeable nibs, so you can slide the nib off and put a different size on your pen - very convenient!
The Lamy nib is aesthetically simple, but in general, they are reliable, easy to work with nibs. I have used a lot of these steel nibs now, and have not had any real issues with them. Sometimes an extra-fine may be more of a fine than extra-fine, but other than that, they've never been a problem. If you don't like the feeling, you can quickly and easy smooth your nib out with some micro mesh.
Lamy nibs perform really well - perhaps not extremely precise and consistent with regards to nib sizes, but reliable. This fine was a Western fine, that is, not very fine! It was smooth and put down nice clean lines. It was medium wet with fast drying times. It did not skip or hard start and it easily kept up with long and fast writing sessions. Lamy's steel nibs are quite firm with normal writing, but you could squeeze out a touch of line variation with moderate pressure. I don't recommend doing that often.
These are great nibs for pretty much any use - calligraphy nibs are available, or regular round nibs for letter writing, journaling, note taking, and more.
The shape of the clip with the curve at the end of the cap allows it to slide easily on to papers or on to shirts. It's not very snug, but it's not a heavy pen either, so it doesn't really need much tension to stay in place.
The AL-Star shape is one of those triangular type that may bother you. The seams are a little sharp if you get one that was roughly done, but it works for me. I don't have issues gripping the section, but I know some people hate it.
PROS & CONS
OVERALLI certainly would recommend the AL-Star to those interested in fountain pens - they're pretty easy to find, quite robust, have interchangeable nibs, and are comfortable to use. The advantages of the pen outweigh the disadvantages, with the exception of the grip - that has to work for you. I think these make great starter pens, every day writer pens, gifts, and whatever else!
I received this pen free of charge for the purpose 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.