If it weren’t for the nib, I wouldn’t own this pen any more.
I’ve written before about my problems and pleasures with the Retro 51 Tornado EXT that I got from Massdrop and I have to admit, I’m surprised that I not only still own it, but that I still use it regularly. For some reason, I can’t quit it.
I still hate the narrow, slippery section. I’ve been disappointed that regular use hasn’t made it any less slippery. It’s not as off-putting as the scrawny neck on other pens, but it’s still annoying.
I mostly keep it because I like the nib too much to part with it. The medium Schmidt nib is terrific. It’s smooth and wet enough that it handles even relatively dry inks, such as Kyo-Iro Stone Road of Gion with little trouble. It also works well on different types of paper.
The pen itself has held up well. It hasn’t developed any creaks or loose bits, despite being dragged around in a Nock Co. case almost every day since I bought it. The herringbone finish hasn’t worn off either.
Because the nib is good, the pen gets used mostly for testing different kinds of ink. It’s also great to use as a lender pen for people who’ve never used a fountain pen before. The steel nib can handle inexperience better than a gold nib can.
If it weren’t for the section, this pen would be in my top five writers. Because of this I’m tempted to send it to a pen maker for a section modification. Until then, I’ll keep using it and hope the slipperiness wears away.