What is it? The limited edition color for 2016 of the Lamy Safari. It’s a dark purple with black hardware and it’s been a long time coming.
Notes: This isn’t going to be too crazy, you can read my original review of the Lamy Safari here. The Dark Lilac version, along with it’s own special ink were released as the 2016 limited edition. The color is nice and dark, and not too “in your face”. The Black hardware adds an overall low-profile look to the pen that I really like. Other than the color, there isn’t really anything different from the Lamy Safari that’s been around for over 30 years. The triangular grip, flat side, wire clip, and ink viewing window are all there, and yes – I like all of these features. It’s a great entry into the fountain pen world thanks to the swappable nibs. The Safari really helped me narrow down what I liked in a nib size. Interested in picking up your own Dark Lilac Safari? Hurry up. Lamy has already stopped making this limited edition, and it’s starting to sell out at various retailers. Thanks to JetPens for sending this one my way, you can snag one here!
I’ve been super on the fence about the Lamy Studio for years now. I think the most appealing part about it is the Safari / Al-Star style 14k gold nib. When I received the pen from Pen Chalet, the real test was to see if I was excited about the pen as a whole, or just the fact that I could trick out my Lamy Safari with an awesome gold nib… Read on to see how the Lamy Studio holds up!
The Lamy Studio comes in a nicely designed cardboard box, just like the Lamy 2000. I’ve said it about a million times now, but packaging isn’t a huge deal to me. The box is nice, not wasteful, and more than enough to make an impression should you decide to give this pen as a gift. The pen itself is a torpedo shaped, completely flush pen with a bright silver end cap on both the tail and cap of the pen. There’s a super glossy (fingerprint magnet) metal grip and propellor style clip made from the same material. There’s definitely a sense of style about the pen – it just looks sleek. I would say it looks like a Lamy 2000 that had to dress up for a slightly more formal occasion — less utilitarian and a bit more classy.
Nib Performance & Filling System:
The shining star of this entire pen is the 14k nib. It’s the same style as that seen on the Safari / Al-Star / various other pens in the Lamy lineup. It can easily be removed for cleaning or swapping over to another pen. It lays down a super wet, silky smooth line with just a tiny bit of cushion, courtesy of the 14k gold. I really like writing with this nib, and yes, I’ve already put a gold nib on a $24 Safari, and yes, it’s also great.
Unlike the 2000, the Studio fills via a proprietary cartridge/converter. I’ve never had an issue with this Lamy filling system, and I don’t foresee any problems with this one either. I can’t help but compare this pen to the 2000 again, because for the same price you get an awesome piston filling mechanism.
Feel & Construction:
Feel. This is where my issues lie with the Studio. The platinum grey coating has a wonderful textured feel to it, but it all goes out the window thanks to the grip. The super shiny, fingerprint magnet of a grip is incredibly slippery. It makes it hard to hold the pen for long writing sessions, and even then it takes me a few tries to find a comfortable grip where I don’t feel as though I’m going to drop the pen. The Studio does come in several other finishes and materials with different grips. I’d definitely recommend checking one of those out over this version BUT most of the better performing (hopefully) grips do not include the 14k gold nib.
Overall, the finishing on the pen is pretty decent. There are no blemishes, the grip fits into the body nicely, the nib wrote well right out of the box. There’s a small gap when closing the cap that makes me feel like the pen isn’t completely closed. If you look closely, you can see the grip shining through in the image above. It’s not ideal, but I’ve yet to have the pen pop open. I’ve also found that the cap snags a little when being put back on. This could be user error, so just make sure you’re putting the cap straight on should you pick one up.
14k gold nib is great
Matte body texture is very nice
Some less-than-ideal finishing
Highly competitive price range
By this point, you may be able to tell that I’m not a huge fan of the Lamy Studio. It’s by no means a bad pen, but the $150ish price range is highly competitive and there are plenty of better options out there. If it was between this pen and the Lamy 2000, I couldn’t see myself recommending this over it. The pen is highlighted by its 14k gold nib, but the ergonomics and finishing have me swapping the nib over to an Al-Star before reaching for the Studio. Let me know in the comments below if you have a Lamy Studio, I’d love to hear your experience with the pen!
I’ve mentioned throughout the site that the Lamy 2000 is my favorite pen…and well, three years later it still is. The initial excitement over getting the pen has long since worn off. The purpose of these Review Reduxs is to show how a pen has held up over time, if I still enjoy it, how much use it gets, and if I’ve gotten my moneys worth. This is the first entry in an ongoing series, so check back regularly for more extended-use pen reviews!
The 2000 has held up quite well over the last three years. The brushed Makrolon body does a reasonably well job of keeping scratches at bay, but it does show some scuffs. The matte finish has smoothed out a bit, being polished by my hand after constant use. The finish is still very much matte, but if you look at a new pen and a used pen side-by-side, there’s a noticeable difference. The clip has held up well, still springy as the day I got it. I’m happy with how the 2000’s appearance has aged. It shows some wear, but by no means looks thrashed. I haven’t been overly gentle with the pen, so it’s good to see that something used so regularly can continue to do so for several years.
A common complaint about the Lamy 2000 is the nib. There’s a very apparently sweet spot, which can be easily confused for a scratchy nib. At first, the flow was a bit weak and the sweet spot was very small. I had the pen worked on by Richard Binder at the Long Island Pen Show, the pen is PERFECT. There are plenty of folks out there who work on nibs, so if you’re not happy with yours, it may be worth sending it out. The pen is easy to disassemble, making cleaning and maintenance easy. Every piece of the pen is either fitted with threads or friction-fit (feed/nib into the grip) and everything goes back into place easily. I’ve greased the piston barrel with a q-tip a few times, and it’s kept the knob turning smoothly with little to no effort. Worth noting, I’ve lost a piece of the pen during a cleaning in the past. There’s a small washer that has the two “ears” that keep the cap on, this piece is small and light, so it’s easily misplaced. A quick email to Lamy’s repair center, and a new one was on the way for $5. The pen is easy to maintain, parts are easily obtainable, and there really hasn’t been any consistent problems with it. The workhorse Lamy 2000 has really lived up to its nickname.
The Lamy 2000 was on of the first pen over $100 I’ve added to my collection. It was a huge step into the hobby, and it’s never an easy purchase decision when making that jump. I was extremely excited when I got the pen, and I can honestly say that I still am. The understated and utilitarian design, solid performance, great reliability, and writing performance result in a daily-use pen that I’m still happy to pick up every time I to write. In the three years I’ve owned the pen, it’s barely gone un-inked. I’m still as excited to use it as I was when I first got it, which I’ve found to be rare in my collection. The Lamy 2000 has been in production since the 1960’s, and it’s gone relatively unchanged. There must be quite a few people out there who feel the same way I do to warrant this, and that’s a great sign.
Still looks great
Nib needed some work
Some very small parts are easily lost
Does It Hold Up?
Absolutely. The Lamy 2000 is a great value for a solid, dependable workhorse fountain pen. It never gets pushed aside, and for me, it’s almost always in use. Several years later, I’m still just as excited to write with it as when I opened up the package for the first time. I’ve since purchased an all original 1960’s Lamy 2000 and a new Stainless Steel model as well. This particular 2000 was my first, and I doubt it will be my last!
Notes: It’s kind of a weird feeling to be completely content with a set of pens. I’ve spent the last four to five years buying, trying, and selling a TON of different pens and I feel like I’ve finally achieved a small collection of writing instruments in which I am completely happy with. Since the last loadout post, I’ve sold off my Pelikan M805 Stresemann – only reason is that I didn’t bond with it. I had the same experience with my M605. They both write wonderfully, look great, and were classic looking pens. The problem is that I found myself reaching for my Lamy 2000 Stainless that I bought at the same time way more than the Pelikan. As far as I’m concerned, this set of 6 pens is all I really need. The Safari is great for grab and go, the Montblanc is large and has significant presence, the Pilot 823 with architect point is super fun to write with, the Nakaya just has a feel in hand like no other pen, and I absolutely love my workhorse Lamy 2000s. Not in the pack are my Karas Kustoms Inks – I still have two of them and they’re not going anywhere. They’re just on a little bit of a break. I’ll continue to buy and try new pens, but right now I’m completely content with these and that is a really weird feeling…
The inks I’ve been using are a bit different too. Two pens contain Diamine’s Asa Blue (Pilot 823 and Nakaya) – a wonderful medium blue that really pops off the page. It’s like a slightly toned down Kon-Peki and I’m loving it. I picked it up in one of Diamine’s smaller bottles to try out, and I suggest you do the same! The Grey Safari is loaded with Grey ink, also by Diamine. It just makes sense in there. The Tsuki-yo (I think it’s Tsuki-yo…can’t remember!) in the Montblanc is a darker blue that just feels right loaded in there. It looks a bit more serious and it’s a serious pen. The Lamy 2000 is loaded with Sailor Kiwa Guro Nano Black – one of the blackest black inks out there. It’s also pigmented and permanent. I had to sign some really important documents this week, so I loaded that up specifically for that. The last on the list is the broad nibbed Lamy 2000 with a mystery ink. I’m sworn to secrecy on what the ink is, the brand of the ink, and the color of it. Trust me, this one is REALLY exciting. I should be able to uncover it within a few weeks so keep an eye out!
I’ve dabbled with video content before, and to be completely honest I don’t know why I haven’t done more. Below is a video comparing the Makrolon version of the Lamy 2000 to the Stainless Steel version of the Lamy 2000. Please let me know what you think in the comments! Would you like to see more video comparisons and reviews?
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