Ranga Bamboo pen in Blue Ripple Ebonite

This is my first ebonite pen. Contacted Mr. Kandan from Ranga Pens and he responded very quickly with models, options and pricing. Things went very quickly and I placed an order for a bamboo fountain pen in blue ripple ebonite with a Schmidt nib and converter after a few exchanges with him on nib selection, colour and pen size.

After a few days, this beauty arrived by courier. I did not know what to expect in terms of the size, weight, aesthetics and performance of the pen. So, with great curiosity and anxiety, I opened the package. It will be an understatement if I say that the Ranga bamboo fountain pen did not disappoint me. It was a very nice pen in all departments.

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The Bamboo stick

As it was my first ebonite pen, I did not know what to expect in terms of weight, finish, texture and feel. It was a light pen (I don’t know the weight quantitatively) with a beautiful finish.  Because of its bamboo stick shape, it is does not shout itself as a pen and the clipless design adds to that.

 

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It is nicely polished and does not have any major tool marks. It is a product of exceptional workmanship. The ripple design suites the bamboo shape.  I felt proud to see this type of craftmanship from an Indian pen maker.  After seeing the video of Mr. Pandurangan at work, I am more impressed.

It is 15 cms long and 1.5 cms in diameter at the widest parts. Yes, it is a large pen.  It has six bamboo segments. For the unfamiliar, it is difficult to identify cap end and the body end. Actually, the cap segments are slightly shorter than the barrel segments and so the separation is not in the exact middle. The cone shaped finials and the cylindrical parts at both end look the same. The one at the bottom helps in posting the cap, if needed.

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The segments on the cap are smaller than the ones on the body

The cap comes off after two full turns to reveal the grip and nib. The grip section is long and is hour glass shaped. The threads are not sharp and do not trouble me as the section is long enough.I hold the pen in the narrowest part of the section it is very comfortable to hold.  It is well balanced pen for me unposted. The pen can be posted, but it comes ridiculously long and becomes a bit back heavy. So, I  always use it unposted. One problem with the capless design is the I have to be careful while keeping the cap and pen on the table so that they won’t roll off.

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Schmidt medium nib

 

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Schmidt medium nib

 

Now, it comes to the most important parts of the pen. The nib and feed. I told Mr. Kandan that I wanted my pen to be reasonably wet and smooth. So, he suggested to go with a Schmidt nib unit and converter.  I chose a medium nib and he gave a gold coloured #6 nib.  It writes very smooth and is wet. The cap seal is good enough to prevent drying up the pen. I have kept the pen in a pen pouch untouched for weeks and it did not have any starting issues.

Currently, I am using Waterman’s Florida blue in it.  Need to change to a color matching the body color. May be a blue black like Noodler’s 54th Massachusetts will go well with it.

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With barrel off. Look at the number of threads in the barrel

 

The barrel unscrews after almost infinite number of turns. Actually, it takes five full turns to unscrew. It feels more than necessary for a cartridge converter pen. But, this pen is eye-dropper convertible and the long threads are there may be to keep it leak proof. Most probably, I will never use it in that mode.

 

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To conclude, it is an awesome pen and I really feel happy to pick it up every time to writing something. . I loved it. I will certainly buy more Ranga pens in the future.

In order to buy, please contact Mr. Kandan on FPN (mpkandan is his handle) or on ebay at http://stores.ebay.com/rangahandmadepens.

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