Monday, July 18, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 403

🎉Happy 100th anniversary, Diplomat Pens!🥂

Diplomat was founded in Germany in 1922 and started out producing fountain pens exclusively, but eventually branched off into other writing instruments --in the 1950s, they were the first company to introduce Germany to retractable ballpoints and in 1958, to cartridge-filling fountain pens.

Today's featured newest acquisition is a Diplomat 'Traveller' "Flame", an elegant fountain pen with an eye-catching finish that I first saw on the blog/website after Azizah did a video review of it.

"Each pen (is) individually set under a blowtorch, ensuring a unique style on every fine writing instrument. Clear lacquer (is) applied during the finishing touches to offer a stunning sheen on the bodies of each pen."
-- description of the "Flame" finish, courtesy of
*not to be confused with lol

(please click on images to enlarge)

And here's my particular example nestled in its original packaging! The pen came in a sleek, foam-lined brushed metal Diplomat presentation box protected by a cardboard sleeve. The packaging is simple but elegant, which matches the pen's aesthetic.

Diplomat pens are made (and hand-assembled) in Germany, and all are manually tested in their workshops. As per their official website, Diplomat pens come with a five year warranty against defects in workmanship or faulty materials.

The current MSRP for the 'Traveller' fountain pen is $70 USD (Goulet Pens sells it for $56 USD). I got mine from for $69.87 CAD (plus $16.64 for shipping from Berlin, Germany) at the end of May. I just checked and it's now selling on for $119 to $124 CAD with free shipping, so the price has gone up. I looked to see if any Canadian online pen retailers still had the "Flame" in stock, but they didn't.

The 'Traveller' is a slim, light, cylindrical fountain pen made of flame-torched lacquered metal with chrome trim and a plastic grip section. The pen fills via standard international cartridge or converter, both of which were included with the pen.

The pen measures 13.5 cm (5.3 inches) capped, 15.3 cm (4.6 inches) from nib tip to barrel end, and weighs 17.2 grams empty (8.8 g barrel weight + 8.4 g cap wt).

Some have claimed that the fountain pen doesn't post, but it does; it actually posts with an audible "click". I measured its posted length, and it was about 15.3 cm or 6 inches.

The pen comes in a large variety of colours (both shiny and matte), as well as a stainless steel model and the multi-coloured "Flame" (current 'Traveller' lineup here).

Regarding that wonderful torched finish on the "Flame" - Goulet Pens did a YouTube video on Diplomat pens in 2018 (right after they started carrying the brand) and in that video, Brian Goulet said this: "Every flame-torched pen...that we've ever sold, the finish does, kind of, flake off and wear off over time... That is, kind of, just the nature of the beast." I haven't had my pen for very long, so I don't know how its finish will fare, but I applaud the Goulets for their forthrightness.

Now, let's take a look at some other features of the pen....

The grip section is round, and made of black plastic with a maximum grip diameter of 9 mm (my measurements). The barrel's outer diameter is 10 mm, so it's quite a slender pen....

 The cap's finial has the Diplomat ink drops logo and the words "Diplomat" and "Germany" on it.
The bottom of the pen's barrel (not shown) is flat with no markings or ornamentation on it.

The pen has a snap-cap that takes a bit of effort to cap; on the plus side, it's very unlikely to come off by accident!

 The gracefully-curved metal clip features an elegant ink drop cutaway design. The clip is highly polished, very smooth and clips onto paper or clothing easily and securely.

The pen comes with a silver-coloured JoWo stainless steel nib (available in Fine and Medium) with the Diplomat ink drops logo, the Diplomat name, "Since 1922" and the nib width ("M", in my pen's case) engraved on it.

 And how does the nib write, you may ask? Well, Dear Reader, it is wonderfully smooth.

I expected no less, based on the quality of the nibs on my two Diplomat 'Magnum' fountain pens (economy models), and all the positive things I'd heard about the quality of Diplomat's nibs in general. My Medium nib does write a tad wider than expected (it lays down a line similar to that of a Pelikan Medium nib), but it is silky smooth, and it wrote like that straight out of the box. The pen
lays down a generous amount of ink and I've had no hard-starting issues with it so far. Kudos to Diplomat for maintaining such high nib quality on all of their pens, not just the pricier ones!

The "Flame's" multi-coloured finish matches practically any journal or notebook...

...and the "Traveller's' classic styling fits in everywhere - it wouldn't look out of place in a business meeting, a classroom, or in a travel journal's pen loop. It's a modern pen with a vintage finish that writes oh-so-smoothly, and is very portable because of its lighter weight. It is a slimmer fountain pen, though, so it may not suit everyone's hand. Thankfully, Diplomat offers smooth-writing fountain pens in a variety of sizes (and price points). The 'Traveller' is available in fountain pen, rollerball, mechanical pencil and ballpoint form.

(~ photos & review by Maja ~)

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