(This pen was given to me as a gift from a family friend and a fan of the blog. My sincere thanks to Mr. Hill for bringing this all the way from Germany for me to enjoy and review. All views expressed in this review are my own.)
Pelikan, a German manufacturer of fountain pens, is known for making some of the nicest pens on the market. However, to my surprise, they have a large line of affordable fountain pens for children in school, as well as for adults. This specific model, the Pelikano Up, is the aluminium variant of the Pelikan Pelikano, a school pen for children. I am very impressed with its quality and reliability.
The Pelikano Up is Pelikan’s response to the Lamy Safari, an extremely popular fountain pen of which I am a huge fan. The pen has some advantages over the Safari, such as the nice aluminum body and a rubberized grip section. The molded grip section, much like the Safari’s, might be a deal breaker for some people, as you have to hold the pen in a specific way in order to use it. However, the clip is not as strong, and the body is far less durable. The cap is your standard snap-on cap. It snaps on tight, so there is no worry of the cap coming off while its in your pocket. Overall, the body is very high quality and should be durable enough for everyday use.
The ergonomics of this pen are great, better than the Lamy Safari. The grip section on the Safari is narrow, so it can be a little uncomfortable during long writing sessions. On the other hand, the Pelikano’s grip section is thicker and easier to hold, making long writing sessions comfortable and easy.
The overall writing performance is decent enough, but not outstanding. The writing experience is by no means bad, but there are some issues. My pen is fitted with a medium nib. For one, the pen requires you to press down a little on the nib in order to get it to begin writing, and it skips quite often while writing. This may be my fault, as the pen seems to have a rather small sweet spot.
The writing experience isn’t very smooth either and is pretty scratchy. While it doesn’t have the most pleasurable writing experience, the nib puts out a nice flow of ink when used properly, and has a stub-ish quality to it.
The Pelikano Up is a nice pen and is very high quality. However, as the nib is scratchy and skips often, I don’t use this pen for anything more than short notes. Maybe replacing the nib or tuning it will stop these problems? I’m not completely sure.
The bottom-line: The Pelikano Up is a comfortable and professional looking economy pen that’s good for quick jots and notes. Perhaps the nib problems I described above are uncommon. I’m interested in hearing your comments if you have any experience with the Pelikano or Pelikano Up.