Lamy Aion Fountain Pen in Black Review
- Review Ink: Robert Oster Fire and Ice Blue
- Review Paper: Various
- Description: The newest in Lamy’s lineup of German-designed fountain pens featuring metal construction and an interesting mix of material finishes.
- Nib: Medium nib
- Filling Mechanism: Cartridge / Converter
- Weight: 33g overall (21g body, 12g cap)
- Measurements: 5.4″ uncapped, 5.6″ capped, 6.4″ posted
- Color Options: Black or Silver @ Pen Chalet
- Price: $71.20
It’s not all the time that a pen brand on the scale of Lamy releases a completely new pen. Sure, we see limited edition colors, a few tweaks here and there, but for the most part it’s more of the same. It’s refreshing to say that this is not the case. The Lamy Aion is the newest fountain pen in their lineup (and rollerball too, if that’s your thing) that features a design that’s very “Lamy”, but also different enough so that it stands out from their lineup. This large, sleek metal pen is crafted from aluminum with an interesting mix of finishes across the grip, body, and cap. There’s also a newly designed steel nib that fits onto the same feed that Lamy has used in the past, but aesthetically a bit rounder and more refined. Let’s take a look at this new offering from one of the most prominent names in the brand.
Thank you to Pen Chalet for sending this pen over for review. If you choose to shop through any of the links in this review, I receive a small amount of credit to shop at Pen Chalet. This means I can get more pens to review, and you get more stuff to read!
Appearance & Packaging:
Packaging is nothing fancy here. It’s a step up from the perforated cardboard sleeve that comes with the Safari / Al-Star models though. The presentation box looks more upscale, and does make you believe that you’re getting your money’s worth. I think they could have gone with either box, but using the classier one is a nice touch — if even to boost the perceived value of the pen. So by Lamy’s standards, I guess it is a little bit fancy.
The Aion is a sleek pen. It’s rather large, all black, and has a few different textured finishes on it. There’s a sort of chunky brushed pattern on the body and cap, a thin polished band around the edge of the cap, and a smooth black section for the grip. The only parts of the pen that aren’t black are polished silver clip and nib. To me, the Aion looks like a cross between the Studio and the Lamy 2000. If the Studio beefed itself up, took a time travel machine into the future, and picked up some cool worn texture along the way, you’d have the Aion. I really do love the appearance of the pen. It kind of reminds me of the Monolith in 2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s mysterious, sleek, plain-ish, but has a presence that’s hard to ignore.
Nib Performance & Filling System:
One of the most different things about the Lamy Aion is the nib. At a quick glance, the nib appears to be the same as the Safari / Al-Star / Studio…but, it’s definitely not. This newly-designed nib for the Aion is a little wider, a little softer around the shoulders, and overall looks a little bit more refined. It fits nicely with the body, adding a softer edge to an otherwise cold, pseudo-sterile looking pen. But how does it write? The answer: quite well. Lamy’s steel nibs are usually hit or miss, but this example of a medium is spot-on. There’s a nice medium amount of flow that lays down a smooth line. I also picked up another Aion in silver (color comparison coming soon) with a broad nib that wasn’t quite so great straight out of the box.
Inside, you’ll find Lamy’s proprietary cartridge/converter filling system. Each pen includes a converter and a cartridge to get you writing, no matter which one your choose. The filling system is unremarkable, but does it’s job well. Over the years, I’ve found the Lamy converters to be of good quality, and last quite a long time without leaking or breaking down.
One of the first things that I noticed about the Aion when taking it out of the box was how it felt. The pen body is hefty, but balanced. The texture throughout gives you some extra grip compared to some of the more slippery, smooth sections on pens like the Studio. Lamy boasts about their one-piece construction, which is pretty cool. The cap and body are machined metal, so there’s no seam on the tail or cap like most of their other pens. Another thing I noticed was the body threads. They’re cut into a pretty thick piece of steel that helps balance the pen out, while adding a comfortable amount of heft. The cap clicks on and off, which I don’t know how I feel about yet. The Gentleman Stationer reports that his is rather loose, but I haven’t had that issue. Maybe over time, the mechanism can weaken since it’s strictly held on by friction and a small lip. I do appreciate the quick access to the nib with a simple click, but I do miss the added security of traditional threads.
In hand, the Aion feels best for me when uncapped. The shape actually feels quite a bit like my Nakaya Neo Standard (but only in shape, nothing else…I’m not saying this pen is like a Nakaya). There’s a slight taper to the grip, and even though the section is smooth, it’s not slippery. Posted, the pen becomes unbearably long for me. I’d say I have pretty average size hands for a guy, and the 6.4″ posted length becomes borderline unwieldy.
Overall, the pen feels premium. To me, it’s worth the premium over the Safari and Al-Star and makes sense that it’s a few bucks cheaper than the steel-nabbed Studios. The Aion fits nicely into the line, providing a modern looking pen that’s made better than their lower end of the line.
- Sleek modern design
- Pleasantly surprising heft
- Solid construction
- Click cap may wear out
- Proprietary filling system
- Pen posted becomes way too long
Overall, I’m a big fan of the Aion. It’s different enough from the rest of Lamy’s pens to stand out – to me at least. I understand that reviewing anything is a highly subjective task, and a lot is going to depend on personal preference. In terms of look and feel, I really do enjoy the Aion. From a strictly technical point of view – it’s reliable, well-built, and I believe to be reasonably priced for what you’re getting. I’ve already added another Aion to my collection and I’m excited to see what Lamy does with this model. Since it’s metal, they can finish it in a variety of colors, which I hope they do (Hey, if you’re listening…make one in Olive Green). I believe the pen to be fairly priced at $71.20, and it’s nice that it’s in the higher quality Lamy boxes and includes a converter. I see myself carrying and using this one a lot in the years to come. Again, you can pick one up at Pen Chalet. Doing so will support the flow of new content to the site.
Did you pick up a Lamy Aion? Let us know in the comments below how you’re liking your new pen!