Fountain Pen Friday: Monteverde Artista

I haven’t been using pens as much the past couple weeks. You see, my outside chest freezer got all rusty and I needed to put rust-eating spray paint all over it. No Big Deal. Well… So, it turns out that you really shouldn’t spend the better part of an hour pressing your finger down with hard constant pressure. I originally thought the numbness was due to being covered in paint, but it turns out I (hopefully temporarily) damaged the nerve endings. It is getting better, but slowly. I’ll be buying a spray grip for any future spray painting though.

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This week’s pen is the Monteverde Artista Crystal with a medium nib (Goulet Pens, Jetpens, Amazon). This is a slightly pricier pen than previous weeks, but we’re still talking about mid $30 range. My (as always, terrible) pictures don’t do it any justice. It is a fully clear pen with chrome accents. It also comes in a number of clear colors, but I like the crystal.

Pen in pieces, freshly cleaned.
Pen in pieces, freshly cleaned.
items for scale
items for scale

The Artista has a weighted screw-on cap and uses standard cartridges and converters. The cap is designed to let you see the nib even when the cap is on. My only gripe about this is that the cap insert is very short (so as to not hide the nib and ink residue can get stuck between the insert and the cap. It’s a really nitpicky gripe and doesn’t affect the pen’s operation in any way. It just means my cap is no longer entirely clear, I have a little purple residue from inks past I’ve been unable to fully clean out.

Pen in hand cap on
Pen in hand cap on

If you like a more substantial feeling pen, just put the cap on the back and the weighted cap will oblige you.

Pen in hand no cap
Pen in hand no cap

If you’re like me and prefer a lighter pen, just omit the cap for an equally wonderful writing experience. The nib on this pen writes… just wonderfully. It isn’t exceptionally fast, but so smooth and an absolute trooper. I almost never have to fiddle with this pen.

Writing sample
Writing sample

The Good

  • very very clear
  • solid, well-made
  • gorgeous
  • writes smooth and steady
  • adjustable pen handling due to weighted cap
  • standard cartridge and converter

The Bad

  • hard grip
  • screw on cap (though the threads are high enough not to dig into my fingers)
  • short cap insert leads to ink residue

Overall grade: solid A

This is a pen that constantly comes back into my rotation and I know I can count on.

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