Japanese fountain pens are renowned for their craftsmanship, elegance, and writing quality. They are sought after by pen lovers and collectors across the world. Blesket, a leading retailer of pen and stationery supplies, carries many of the best Japanese brands of fountain pens. In this article, we will explore the history of these brands and list the pens Blesket carries.
History of Japanese Fountain Pens
The history of Japanese fountain pens can be traced back to the late 19th century when Japan began to import fountain pens from the United States. In the early 1900s, Japanese companies began to manufacture their pens. The Pilot made the first mass-produced fountain pens in 1918. In the 1920s, many Japanese companies began manufacturing fountain pens, including Sailor, Platinum, Wing Sung, and Platinum. These pens were known for their quality, reliability, and stylish designs.
Many of these companies are still in business, and their pens remain popular with pen enthusiasts. In the 1950s, Japan began to produce more advanced fountain pens. These pens featured innovative designs and superior writing quality. Japan’s fountain pen industry flourished in the following decades, with companies such as Pilot, Sailor, and Platinum leading the way.
Sailor is one of Japan’s oldest and most prestigious fountain pen manufacturers. Founded in 1911, Sailor has produced quality fountain pens for over a century. Sailor pens are renowned for their superior writing quality and craftsmanship. Blesket carries many Sailor pens, including 1911 Large, 1911 Standard, Professional Gear, and King of Pen.
The Pilot is one of Japan’s oldest and most respected fountain pen manufacturers. Founded in 1918, Pilot has produced quality pens for over a century. Pilot pens are known for their superior writing quality and craftsmanship. Blesket carries many Pilot pens, including the Vanishing Point, Custom Heritage, and Prera.
Platinum is one of the most popular fountain pen manufacturers in Japan. Founded in 1919, Platinum has produced quality pens for over a century. Platinum pens are known for their superior writing quality and craftsmanship. Blesket carries many Platinum pens, including the 3776, Century, and Carbon Desk Pen.
Wing Sung is a leading fountain pen manufacturer in Japan. Founded in 1947, Wing Sung has produced quality pens for over 70 years. Wing Sung pens are known for their superior writing quality and craftsmanship. Blesket carries a wide range of Wing Sung pens, including the 699, 698, and 659.
Kaweco is a leading fountain pen manufacturer in Japan. Founded in 1919, Kaweco has produced quality pens for over a century. Kaweco pens are known for their superior writing quality and craftsmanship. Blesket carries a wide range of Kaweco pens, including the AL Sport, Classic Sport, and Perkeo.
Thoughts On the Japanese Fountain Pen
Nearly all Japanese fountain pen manufacturers produce their nibs, in contrast to many American and European brands that outsource this task. This gives Japanese pen manufacturers more control over the reliability and caliber of their nibs. When choosing a fountain pen, two factors should be considered: the nib’s substance and tip size.
Most fountain pens are below $100, and some high-end pens use steel nibs. Steel is a great option for fountain pen nibs since it is a low-cost metal with exceptional durability and resistance to corrosion. It is rather simple to cut and mold into the forms required for nibs. Most steel nibs are firm, so when writing tension is applied, the tines need not flex back from the paper. Start with steel nibs to ease the adjustment to fountain pens for beginners who’ve only previously used ballpoint or gel pens.
Gold is a lighter metal that could offer a more cushioned writing experience. When pressure is applied, it may “bend” and produce line fluctuation. The significant line variation exhibited in antique fountain pens cannot be reproduced by current fountain pens, not even ones with “soft” nibs. It is crucial to remark.
A gold nib might spring from excessive flexing, which indicates the tines are now permanently separated. This may cause your pen to have difficult starts, derail, or stop working altogether.
Gold also has a cost, both financially and otherwise. Fountain pens with gold nibs are often only available on more expensive models.
Japanese Nib Sizes
The tips of Japanese fountain pen nibs are generally smaller than those of Western and non-Japanese brands. Japanese writing requires a finer and more accurate tip than Western writing because it is more complicated and dense. Japanese nibs—especially extra-fine nibs—are finer than their Western equivalents. Japanese fountain pens almost always have fine, good, or medium nibs. When they are available, wide nibs are nearly always fashioned of gold.
The fact that a Japanese manufacturer creates a nib does not automatically imply that the nibs are finer. The Platinum Preppy, for instance, is offered in three nib sizes, although only the ultrafine nib is regarded as a Japanese size. The medium and fine nibs are more in line with Western sizes.
Japanese Fountain Pen Recommendations
Pilot Petit 1 Mini Fountain Pen
The Pilot Petit1 Fountain Pen bears true to its name, measuring less than four and a half inches when it is capped. The pen’s body may be extended to a suitable length by snapping the cap firmly onto the pen’s rear. The Petit1’s feed employs a fiber “wick” to prevent the nib from drying out. However, additional care should be taken when changing ink colors to clean the pen fully.
Try turning the Petit1 into an eyedropper pen if you’re an intermediate fountain pen user. Follow the directions in our eyedropper conversion guide to more than double the amount of ink your fountain pen can hold.
Meister by Point Slim Liner Fountain Pen
Portable cosmetics inspired the ultra-slim Meister by Point Slim Liner Fountain Pen. Even though it is tiny enough to carry in your pocket, the barrel provides enough for a full-size converter. While taking notes while traveling, we advise putting the cap someplace secure since it does not stick on the top of the pen.
Platinum Preppy Fountain Pen
Although the Platinum Preppy only costs approximately $5, it performs far better than its price point. No matter which tip size you choose, the strong steel nib, available in extra fine, fine, and medium sizes, writes effortlessly. Although you can always change the cartridges or use a converter, we enjoy how the body color fits the color of the ink inside. The Preppy also has a proprietary “Slip and Seal” cap from Platinum that prevents pens from drying out for a minimum of a year.
Note: if you are interested in purchasing the pens mentioned above, you can check them out on Blesket Canada.
Japanese fountain pens are famous for their craftsmanship. Blesket carries a wide range of these pens from some of the best Japanese brands, including Sailor, Pilot, Platinum, Wing Sung, and Kaweco. Whether a pen enthusiast or a collector, you will surely find the perfect pen for your needs.