I bought a couple pens in August 2014 that were supposed to be shipped in November. I didn’t get them until this week.
Thus far it seems to have been worth the wait.
First The Wait:
Kickstarter likes to tell the public that it is not a store. Its users are not “shoppers” they are “backers” and a lot of pixels are used to explain the difference. Quite frankly, a lot of the backers disagree with this lesson in semantics (I suspect it’s the exchanging money for goods thing) and they tend to get upset when a project repeatedly misses it’s deadlines, especially after the first few deadlines have been missed.
But it’s important, if you’re going to back something on Kickstarter, to remember that if it is a store, it’s not like a normal retail store. It’s more like a hybrid of shopping, investment and gambling.
In my case I bought a pair of Nexus Minimal fountain pens from Namisu, a company out of Edinburgh. The project overshot its 10,000 British pound goal by ten times, finally finishing at over 104,000 pounds. This meant, to those of who’d backed other projects, that the pens were going to be delayed. In Kickstarter, success breeds delay. If it doesn’t, it breeds crap.
That said, my problem with this Kickstarter is that although we got a lot of backers updates, we didn’t seem to get a lot of information. The deadline was always being pushed back by some technical issue and we would get more information later that turned out to be an update telling us we’d get more information later. I was an Early Backer and wanted to know where I was in line but I never found out until I got my pens.
The pens themselves are very nice, with a few small quirks. They both needed a thorough cleaning and I had to tighten the nib and feed on the titanium version. Because the cap threads are at the front of the pen behind the nib–which does make it more comfortable to use–the threads fill up with ink as the pen is being filled, adding an extra bit of clean up.
Also, the cap is barely bigger than the nib which means I have to be careful when I re-cap the pen.
I’ve used the pens for the past few days and although it’s too early make any serious judgements, I think they were worth the wait. The titanium medium nib on the titanium version is surprisingly juicy and writes like a broad nib. It also had a funny squeak when I first started using it, but that’s already going away. It writes well, but the tines are slightly out of line and will need some work. The aluminum version has a steel medium nib that writes well and leaves a thinner line than the platinum nib.
The machine work on the section looks great–part of the delay involved improving the fit and finish of the pens–but they dig into my fingers if I’m not careful how I hold the pens. The threads on the titanium version need some polishing as they grind when I put the cap on and off.
I’ve already worked the two pens into my daily carry by cleaning and setting aside a couple other pens. Eventually I’ll have used the two enough to make a long term review.
Until then, I have a lot of writing to do.