The fountain pen world is full of myths and legends. On examination some of them hold true, others do not. One that interests me is the oft-repeated statement, “I have big hands so I need a big pen.” Back in yesteryear the only really big pens around were very expensive ones. Somehow, most people seemed to manage with their Swan SM/100s and Conway Stewart 286s. More recently, I remember my fellow workers, some of whom were great hulking brutes, doing just fine with their Crystal Bics.
How does one explain the popularity of the Kaweco Sport? This is a tiny pen; even posted it’s 13.3 cm. There are thousands of them out there. Can that only be explained by the existence of an army of Munchkins all busily using their Kaweco Sports? Somehow, I don’t think so. I think you can use any size of pen you want to and anything bigger than a pencil stub is comfortable for anyone.
It’s a curious little thing, the Kaweco Sport. It’s like a descendant of all those pocket pens of long ago mixed with the long-shorts that the Japanese used to be so fond of. Personally, I rather like them but I’d like them better if the nibs were more to my liking. I’m told these are Bock nibs. This one is a fine and it’s okay but it’s not a patch on some of the other fines I have, like my Pilot or Platinum. I’ve also had a medium and I didn’t like it at all. I’m not sure why that is. It’s just an impression. I could sit here and analyse it all but I might still never get to the bottom of it. I’m just not fond of Bock nibs.
That said, the Sport seems to be an almost ideal carry-about pen. Small, well-capped and light. They’re quite good on the desk too. With their faceted shape they stay where they are set down and don’t go falling on the floor. They are cheap too, coming in at under £20 for the Classic – quite a bit under, if you shop around. I am told that they are quite easy to turn into an eyedropper, though why you would want to do such a thing I don’t know.
3 thoughts on “Does Size Matter?/Kaweco Sport”
I love the Kaweco Sport, I have modern ones in black, green, brown and cognac. They pucnch well above their weight, I think. I’m not mad about Bock nibs either, but the BB variety does work very well for me. It’s a smooth, juicy nib, great for seeing what an ink can really do.
I suggest you look at a vintage model. Piston-fill, springy gold nibs, they are a different animal. The early, open nib models have full flex nibs: I had one, a black beauty with the old Merck Pharma logo engraved, and I foolishly sold it on. I still have a green one with a stubbish B nib, which I will pick for my next review: you’ll see how lovely the nib is. If you cast your line in German eBay, you can find one for less than 40 pounds, which isn’t bad for a gold-nibbed vintage piston filler. I found one recently that I got for a friend, and it cost me 33 Euros.
The modern Sport does make an excellent eyedropper, due to the amount of barrel thread. I have no interest in eyedroppers, with me they would be a disaster waiting to happen.
Yes, I can see that the BB nib might give a better showing.
I have yet to come across a vintage Sport but I have had other earlier Kawecos. Two Dias, made when the company still produced their own nibs, wrote very well.
They knew how to make pens. The Dia, the Colleg, the Spezial… I missed out on an azure marbled Spezial that still haunts me.