Monday, July 4, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 396

I got this very cool all-metal pen a while ago as a gift from fellow pen club member Andy W. after I bought a colourful Conklin fountain pen from him. I'll do a review of the Conklin another day as the weather is too cloudy and miserable to take decent photos of it. In the meantime, here's the gift pen from Andy -- my Wing Sung '601A' open-nibbed plunger-filling flighter (brushed stainless-steel)  fountain pen!

(please click on images to enlarge)

I ran into a bit of confusion when I was researching the history of this model because there's an older Wing Sung fountain pen with exactly the same model name that has (a) a conical nib and (b) a vacuum-filling mechanism with a rubber sac! The newer version
I'm reviewing today (which came out in 2020, I believe) has an open nib and a pump-filling mechanism. This open-nibbed version is also available with plastic barrels (in various solid colours) and stainless steel caps that have a blue jewel finial (also found on the barrel ends). It also comes as a clear demonstrator.

I found an Aliexpress link for my particular all-stainless steel fountain pen (with your choice of gold-coloured trim or silver-coloured trim). If you want the same stainless steel pen body, but with an actual gold nib, here's an Aliexpress link to the 14k gold-nibbed version

It's a handsome-looking fountain pen and I really like the stainless steel body/gold trim combination. The silver trim option has a gold-coloured nib (as does my pen) and that drives me nuts. Why do pen companies do that, instead of putting a silver-coloured nib on a fountain pen that's completely silver (including the trim)?!?

The pen weighs 24.8 grams according to my new pocket digital scale, and its capped length is 14 cm. Its uncapped length is about 13.8 cm from nib tip to barrel end, and its posted length is approximately 15.5 cm. I'm a "high gripper" ---I grip pens a bit higher up on the section--- so normally I'd use this pen posted but I'm worried about its barrel getting scratched by the cap's sharp lip, so I use it unposted. It's long enough for me to use comfortably unposted, though.

I also like that the blind cap's trim ring is gold-coloured. When you unscrew this blind cap... see part of the pen's plunger-filling mechanism (and thank you, Wing Sung, for making the plunger out of metal,*not* plastic!). If you want to see how this filling mechanism works, there's a YouTube video that shows the clear demonstrator version here (note: the YT reviewer refers to its mechanism as a "draw-filler").

If you want to take the filling mechanism apart, there's a plastic tool for this task, so I ordered it separately from the same Aliexpress seller that sells this model (the seller's info is in first link at the top of this blog post). This small tool cost less than $3 CAD shipped, so I ordered a few other things from the seller at the same time, heh.

Above: the Parker "Arrow"- inspired clip that Wing Sung previously used on their '601' hooded-nibbed model. Parker's "Arrow" clip is iconic, and this Wing Sung version is nicely rendered.

The metal finial on the cap top (photo above) is gold-coloured and has a peaked top. There's a matching finial on the bottom of the pen's barrel, which made me happy because I love symmetry in pens. The cap is friction-fit and both caps and posts securely (but beware of potential barrel scratching if you decide to use the pen posted).

Above: a close-up of part of the inscription on the pen's cap--ie. the Chinese characters that precede '601A' (seen in the photo directly below)

(you can't see it here, but the opposite side of the cap says "Made in China" in block letters)

Above: the attractive, monotone gold-plated #5-sized stainless steel nib. Above the engraved letters "WING S" and "F" is the Wing Sung logo which --I just realized-- consists of a tiny fountain pen on top of three concentric circles -- love it!

pen's glossy black plastic grip section is tapered and goes from about 0.85 cm in diameter (closest to the nib) to a respectable 1.15 cm (my measurements). The nib had a bit of so-called "baby's bottom" issues (ink flow issues caused by the over-polishing of the nib's inner tines, at the factory level) but after I did a bit of nib tuning with some fine Micromesh, it writes without flow issues now. It doesn't have any flex--the nib is quite stiff--but I didn't expect the nib to be flexy.

Overall, the pen feels really good in the hand. It's a solid, attractive fountain pen and one that I'm very grateful to own.
Andy -- many thanks again for this beautiful pen (and my apologies for taking so long to do a review of it)!

(photos & review by Maja)

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