The Regal brand is a new one to me. That's actually why I offered to review these for Massdrop a few months ago. As a result, I'll have several of these to show you in the next several weeks.
First up is the George. It's a simple name, but this pen is fancy. It's mostly silver and gold with just a little bit of black fill in the scroll-work at the base of the cap.It's not the sort of pen that I would generally pick up. Too much silver and gold for my tastes. After carrying it around for a while, I've grown to like it.
The shape reminds me of the Cross Century, but the clip is very different. It's an odd detail, that clip. It works out really well for clipping the pen to thicker things, though. Jeans-pockets, leather pen loops, etc pose no problem for this design. The other odd thing is that it looks like it should be an articulated, spring-loaded affair, but it's not. It's fairly stiff, but definitely functional and not at all fragile.
There are two boxes and a black sachet in the packaging scheme. All of them sport the same branding. For me, that's fine on each peace but overkill all together. 1979 is a good year, though, and the crown is simple and recognizable. That's what I like in a symbol.
This pen didn't come with the converter, just a cartridge. I liked the ink well enough, but when I was adjusting the nib (more on that later) I was having a hard time testing the nib with a cartridge, so I sucked out the ink and put it in a converter. It's a little odd that a pen in this price bracket doesn't come with a converter, but any old converter you have lying around will probably work.
The threads are made of the same metal as the rest of the section. You weren't going to make this pen into an eyedropper anyway, but the threads make this a no-go. Inside is a standard-sized nipple. No special cartridges or converters needed.
The nibs on the Regal pens are all about a medium in width, and they're not marked with a size. This one sports some attractive scroll work, the crown, the Regal name, and a note that the nib is 18k gold-plated. To my eye, it looks like the "18k GP" is stamped into the nib and the rest is engraved. It's a little busy on such a small nib (about a #5), but compared to the intense designs on the barrel it is a little tame. I do really like how the two-tone matches the rest of the pen.
As it says above, I worked on the nib just a little bit. It was pretty okay, but the tines were a little off. That was no big deal. Lots of nibs come that way, and it just takes a little bit of very gentle force in the other direction to make it right. Then it was just a little more toothy than I like, so I worked some figure-8s on some micro-mesh pads, and it was fine. Now it writes like a champ.
The clip sports a tiny crown and a void through the middle.
The butt-end of the pen is a nice squared-off gold cap.
Really, they should have left the black out of the details at the bottom of the cap. Mine came a bit flawed, and at this price-point it would be better not to risk it. The Regal branding on the band below it looks good, and they didn't bother with black lacquer on that part. That was a good move.
This is the inside of the barrel...
...and here's the inside of the cap. It's a snap-cap, and it's got a nice click to it when capping the pen. It also posts just fine with a click that you can feel, but not hear. There's a plastic inner cap that keeps the ink fresh and your butt-end un-scuffed. Good stuff.
The section is smooth, but I haven't had ant problem with it slipping in my fingers. It is pretty narrow, though, so if you have big hands you might not love that. It does pick up fingerprints like a champ, though.
In this close-up you can see scuffs at the top of the section. I didn't notice them until just now, though, so I wouldn't worry too much about them.
I like the pattern on the barrel, now. It reminds me of fish scales for some reason and it gives the pen some depth.
Here are some size comparisons for you. It's a pretty "regular" sized pen.
Price Range Comparisons
All of these are in the general price range of the Regal George (though they're all higher or lower). It's MSRP is $120 at ColoradoPen.com and on the Regal site. That seems a little steep for this pen, but the Massdrop price is going to be bottoming out around $76. That's much more reasonable, and it drops the level of competition a bit.
|Sheaffer Intensity, Pilot Vanishing Point, Franklin-Christoph 27, Regal George, Pilot Custom 74, Levenger Truewriter Select.|
Thanks again to Massdrop for sending the George out for review. No money changed hands, and this is not a paid review. All of the above is based solely upon my experience with the product.
Massdrop Drop Link will work after 9/6/2015