The Conklin 120th Anniversary Duraflex fountain pen is a beautiful, limited edition offering that is accompanied by a pretty presentation box and a limited edition ink. While it seems to be a fairly standard Conklin designed pen, the marbled blue colour with the rose gold furnishings, and the inclusion of a Duraflex rose gold coloured steel nib make a nice package.
The Conklin 120th Anniversary Duraflex comes in a beautiful, special edition package which also includes the pen with a converter and a bottle of limited edition ink.
The pen is a very traditional shape - reminds me of old Parkers. There are separate, prominent end caps trimmed with rose gold trim rings that attach to the body and the cap.
The acrylic material is a marbled blue and black combination. With the rose gold furnishings, this colour really pops. I like that all of the pen, including the end caps and section, is made from the same material.
The cap has a matching rose gold cap band, and the clip is a one-piece shaped unit attached to the top trim ring. The cap is round with a squared off profile. The end cap has /Conklin EST. 1898/ scribed into it.
The body is a cartridge/converter design with a cap thread at the point where the section meets the body. A short, contoured grip section extends below the threads. With my grip, one of my fingers still sits on top of the threads, but they are not sharp or uncomfortable. The inside of the pen has silver metal and a standard cartridge converter. The pen is a medium size and fits nicely in my hand without being posted, and the cartridge converter holds a fair amount of ink.
As an acrylic pen, the weight is quite light, though I do find the pen a little unwieldily if posted. While the pen does post, the whole cap sits above my hand and becomes both quite long and back heavy. Luckily, for most sized hands, you should be able to use the pen without posting.
The Duraflex steel nib has a very unique look. This nib is coloured in rose gold to match the pen trim, which is pretty. The nib seems quite long - it looks about the same size as a number 6 nib, but the tip seems longer. The nib also sports relief cuts level with the breather hole that allows for the nib to flex. The nib is soft, but, to my touch, doesn’t have a tremendous amount of line variation. I would compare the nib to the much more expensive Platinum 3776 soft fine gold nib. There is some variation on down strokes, and perhaps a better calligrapher than me could make some fantastic designs, but with my relatively light touch, the variance was minimal but acceptable.
The softness of the nib does make the pen a delight to write with. I enjoy the soft flex and reasonable flow of this nib. It does seem softer than traditional steel flex pens (such as the Noodler’s Ahab). The feed also appears to do an excellent job of keeping up with the flow.
120th Anniversary Ink
This pen comes with a special dark blue ink labelled as the 120th Anniversary special edition ink. The bottle is a 30ml ink in what looks like a Monteverde ink bottle. The ink seems to be very well behaved, and I do suspect that it is made by Monteverde for this set. I don’t recognize the blue from their standard line but hope that this ink may become a regular feature as it is really lovely.
The ink is a dark blue in that nicely matches the acrylic of the pen.
I received this set as a Christmas gift from my wife and really appreciated this pen. The pen is a beautiful and classic design, and I love the colour. I think the matching blue ink is stunning.
I don’t have a lot of luck with the flexible nib - but I write softly, so this is not surprising. I do feel that the nib has a softness to it that makes it enjoyable for me to write with.
The cost of this set was $130 Canadian, which I feel is reasonable for a limited edition pen. If you come across one of these pens (or one of the non-limited counterparts), I would recommend to anyone that likes classic pen styling with a soft nib feel.