Thursday, January 13, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 311

Today we're featuring a fountain pen that came out in 2019, but wasn't purchased until 2021 when I bought it as a Christmas self-gift. Well, I wound up getting another pen for that purpose (lol) but I thought I'd review this pen now because it's a winter-themed pen and we've had a lot of snow this month!

(~ please click on images to enlarge ~)

Meet my Moonman 'C1'  Snowflake commemorative edition fountain pen!


I purchased the pen from eBay seller "esybuy" (one of my favourite sellers) back in March 2021 for around $24 USD incuding shipping. It arrived tastefully-packaged and well-protected in a Moonman cardboard box with foam insert. The small instruction booklet that was included is well-illustrated, but there is no English version of the text. No matter---a picture is worth a thousand words, as they say! The pen's box top, however, does have a translation of the Chinese characters on it:"Moonman. feel the temperature of writing!" 

At this point, I should mention that Moonman underwent a name change a few months ago and rebranded themselves as Majohn, so some online sellers are listing this model under the new company name. In fact, seller "esybuy" is still selling this same model on under the name "Majohn C1 Transparent Eyedropper Fountain Pen/ Snowflake Moonman C1 Fountain Pen".

Although it came pre-fitted with an ink converter, the pen was also (primarily?) made to be used as an eyedropper-filler, and Moonman was kind enough to include a glass eyedropper for that purpose. As far as its functioning ink capacity, the pen's barrel can hold between 4 to 5ml. If there was one thing I'd change about the filling system, it'd be to have a converter with a clear stem---the black stem on the supplied converter kind of ruins the pen's aesthetic :/

The acrylic, crystal-clear cap and barrel of the pen are decorated with winter themes---leaping deer (or reindeer), snowflakes, stars, evergreen trees, et al. It's a nice-sized pen, coming in at 138 mm capped and ~126mm from nib tip to barrel end (the pen does not post). At 21 grams capped and 17 grams uncapped, it's light enough to use for long writing sessions while at the same time, feels substantial in the hand.

 (Note: I haven't used the pen as an eyedropper-filler yet, but when I do, I'll use Parker Quink Washable Blue ink in it as I'm a little bit paranoid about barrel staining with this pen. Normally it doesn't really bother me, but this fountain pen looks so pretty with its ice-like cap and barrel...and I'd love for it to stay that way).

I'm not a fan of pens with a large step-down from barrel to grip section, but the section on this one is a nice diameter and very comfortable to hold. The section is made of multi-coloured resin with silvery sparkles in it. I was a bit surprised to see a blue/red combination used for a Christmas/winter-themed pen's section --I'd have expected a green/red combo --but it actually works quite well here as the section colours match blue-shaded inks better than their green counterparts. Apparently, the section patterns and colours vary from pen to pen, but all the 'C1' snowflake fountain pens I've seen online have had blue and red colours in them.

The pen sports a single-tone silvery steel #6-sized Fine nib branded with the Moonman name & logo, the nib size (the letter "F" in a circle) and the silhouette of a mountain range that reminds me of the one on Monteverde's steel nibs. I love the way my F nib writes (like a Western Fine). The nib has a tiny amount of feedback, but I love that and I'm not going to do any nib tuning on it--I love it the way it is!

The cap top and barrel end both have flat ends, and I was pleased to see that the acrylic was considerably thicker there (extra protection from breakage, if the pen nose-dives onto a hard surface).

You can't see it in my photos-- I really tried, but it's challenging to photograph-- but the cylindrical cap and barrel each have one facet to prevent the pen from rolling. The double-threaded cap allows these two facets
to align perfectly with each other when the pen is capped. These two flat areas are the only parts of the pen that don't have any images on them.

The section took me about five turns to unscrew from the barrel, which is reassuring if you're using it as an eyedropper-filler - the extra turns help to prevent ink leakage from the barrel-section joint. There is a small, clear O-ring at the end of the section threads to ensure the section screws tightly onto the barrel. There's also a smaller clear O-ring at the end of the nib collar threads. If you're really worried about barrel leaks, you could apply a bit of pure silicone grease (not supplied) to the section threads.

I like this branch motif on the barrel end. Actually, I really like all of the winter images on this pen--they have a sort of retro look to them, which I find charming. One YouTuber complained about the designs on the pen being upside down (from the user's POV) when the pen was in use. This reminded me of the debate about coffee/tea mug designs--should they be facing away from the person holding the mug, or not? Personally, I find this a non-issue when it comes to pens... but when it comes to mugs, I'm firmly in the "design should face the mug user" camp :)

All in all, I think the Moonman 'C1' snowflake special edition is an attractive fountain pen, a very good value for the money and a fountain pen I'd recommend if you're looking for an eye-catching clipless demonstrator with a large ink capacity.

Before I end this review, I should mention that Moonman used a similar (not exactly the same, though) snowflake theme on another of their clipless demonstrator fountain pens--the Moonman 'M2'--but that model is torpedo-shaped, not cylindrical like the 'C1'. If you're not a fan of the winter designs on either of those pens, both the 'C1' fountain pen and 'M2' come as regular editions without any designs on them.

(photos & review by Maja)

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