Penlux

Penlux is a Taiwanese company founded in 1999 with a focus on manufacturing private label products. I assume this means they started out as an OEM company producing products for other companies. Penlux came into their own in 2015 by producing their own brand of fountain pens.

Last year I was researching “Koi-like” pens and stumbled upon the Penlux brand and thought they made interesting pens with the typical cigar shaped design. I read the positive reviews and comments, but never gave the company or pen a second thought.

A few weeks ago I started to see references and discussions around a “snowflake-like” pen. Of course going through several snow storms at the time, this pen peaked my interest.

When I saw a message that the Penlux Snowflake pen was released, I headed over to my online vendor of choice to make sure the Fine nib was available. It was. I was doing some last minute research on the pen and within 30 minutes the Fine nib was sold out. My gut feeling told me to get the Medium nib. I selected the pen and nib size and clicked on the “add to cart” button.

I patiently waited for my pen. I thought my package was lost as I was not able to get any real time status after it shipped. Only a message that it’s making its way through the system. A little over a week later, my pen arrived.

My Penlux in Snowflake resting on top of my Lochby Field Journal

This is a beautiful cigar shaped pen. It’s what I call an oversized pen. I love the frosty looking resin with swirls of white that does remind me of snow. While I was admiring my new pen and trying it out in my hand, something was amiss. I could not put my finger on it. The pen felt comfortable in my hand. The grip felt rather large and girthy. I grabbed my Opus 88 Omar Demonstrator to make a comparison.

Here’s my Penlux next to my Opus 88 Omar

My Opus 88 is just a tad bit longer than my Penlux. It’s also slightly bigger. It’s hard to tell from my picture. I like the frosted look of the Penlux over the clear Opus 88 demonstrator look.

Both pens uncapped

You can see from the above picture how different the two pens are.

I will talk about the unique qualities of this pen. If you look at my picture, my Penlux appears to be larger than my Opus 88. That is not the case. When you put the specs of the pens, side by side, my Opus 88 is actually larger. My Penlux has two key features/specs where it’s larger than my Opus 88:

  • Grip: Penlux is 12.0mm and Opus 88 is 10.8mm
  • Body weight: Penlux is 22g and Opus 88 is 18g

The grip on this Penlux is unusual. A few of you might have seen my comment where I sat on the fence with this pen. There was something different about Snowflake. It wasn’t until I started to write with my pen that it came to me. The grip is straight. There is no tapering. Once I saw and felt this, I jumped off the fence and was happy with my pen.

The nib unit on my Penlux appears to be glued/epoxied to the section. So no nib unit swapping for me.

It appears the pen can not be taken apart. There’s an included diagram that shows an “X” for trying to remove the piston. Don’t even think about it. It’s not a TWSBI.

I hesitated to call these “issues” as everyone has different likes and dislikes in regards to the look, feel, and function of fountain pens. I have accepted the unique qualities of this pen. It took a few hours of writing and holding my pen to get there.

My medium nib is buttery smooth. Under my loupe, the nib is perfect. No adjustments were needed. I could tell it would be a smooth writing experience when I dragged my nib over my paper without the pen being inked. Once I filled my pen with ink, I noticed my pen was writing wet.

The internal piston mechanism in this pen is made from aluminum alloy. This is the smoothest piston knob I have ever experienced. The piston glides effortlessly up and down inside the barrel.

My Penlux is a well made pen. I stuck my finger inside the cap and I could feel the smooth finish. The walls of the pen appear to be thick. The material they used is high grade PMMA.

So, I did a little research on PMMA or Polymethyl Methacrylate. It’s a synthetic resin produced from the polymerization of methyl methacrylate. It’s a transparent and rigid plastic. It’s often used as a substitute for glass products such as shatterproof windows. It’s known as acrylic glass or trademarked as Plexiglas or Lucite.

The nib is laser engraved with the Penlux logo. It looks like a JoWo #6 nib.

My writing sample and my attempt at drawing snowflakes

You can see from my picture how the pen seems to disappear against the white paper.

I love my Penlux Snowflake pen! It’s definitely well made. An oversized and solid pen. Uncapped, it is well balanced in my hand. I can say it’s a bit more comfortable to write with versus my Opus 88. The Penlux grip may not be for everyone. If you have joint issues in your writing hand like I do, this pen might be worth looking at. If you dislike girthy pens, I would suggest you pass on this.

A note to “S”: I’m not enabling you at all! Thank you for the ink suggestions: Summer Storm and Manyo Haha. My ink wishlist is growing again.

Pen: Penlux Masterpiece Grande in Snowflake with Medium nib

Ink: Robert Oster Silent Nite

Paper: Rhodia

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