I have purchased a fair amount of fountain pens in the past couple of years. I started soaking up all the fountain pen knowledge I could find in my quest to learn what to buy. I ended up with many of the iconic pens that get reviewed and mentioned a lot. The Lamy 2000, the Lamy Safari, Pelikan M205, Pilot Metropolitan etc. All have been good pens but some of them just didn’t grow on me so my acquisitioning continued. I was intrigued by the demonstrator idea so I spent some time and coin collecting all the demonstrators I could afford. I maxed out my pen storage and price point tolerance of demonstrators and experienced the same thing, some grew on me but most didn’t so they got sold to fund new grail candidates. My current buying pattern is focused on trying to sample pens made in different countries. I have USA, Japan and China covered pretty well. Italy has an opening for a nice Visconti or an Aurora.
My new pen friend Ron over at Pen Chalet offered up an Aurora Style for review. I was excited at the chance to use some Italian craftsmanship. Thanks to Ron I humbly submit to you my review of the Aurora Style.
Aurora Style Resin Fountain Pen
- Steel Fine Nib
- Street Price: $80.00 +/- (Use the code MYPENNEEDSINK for 10% off at Pen Chalet)
- 5 3/8” capped
- 4 11/16” uncapped
- 5 3/4” Posted
I was not familiar with the history of Aurora so for this review I found this page about the Aurora Pen Company at Pen Chalet’s site. Aurora has been making pens since 1919 and like most Italian goods they put a lot of thought and effort in aesthetics and design. The Style does not disappoint.
Packaging is nice for this price point. Hard cardboard sleeve with glossy black paint and red Aurora logo. The sleeve wraps a nicely padded matte black clam shell box that coddles the pen in the normal taffeta style pillow and retention band. Depending on your box keeping habits, this one could go either way. Nice for gift giving.
The Aurora is a traditional styled pen with tapers down to the point and a tapered cap that ends with a unique wedge design at the very top of the cap. They complement each other nicely. Being familiar with other Italian products I’m sure there is a lot more design and thought put into what I see as simple tapers but the result is attractive.
The Style is available in a wide range of finish options: Bronze style, Lacquer, Satin, Lacquer Gemstone and Rose Gold editions. Additionally most of those styles come in a variety of color choices. My example is called Paprika, a pleasant hue of red.
I am a no posting, cap on the desk, type writer so when I first measured this pen uncapped and unposted I was a little concerned with the small number. The fear was dispelled when I picked up the pen for the first time and began writing with it. Maybe my grip is farther down the section than normal but this pen was quite accommodating to my larger hands. The pen is extremely light and although I don’t obsess about pen weight much I can barely feel this one in my grip so I suspect long writing sessions would not stress my hand.
The section is a smooth black tapered plastic with a raised ridge near the nib end that makes for a convenient finger stop. The cap is the snap on variety so no threads get in the way of your grip. The transition from the pen body to the section is a slight step down with a tapered chrome trim ring that eliminates any sharp edges or grip irritants.
The cap is a snap on style. Capping the pen is firm with a good positive audible confirmation. The tug to remove the cap is just right to my preference. The cap securement is not so tight that you risk an ink bomb by having to tug and making the pen break free abruptly. There is a plastic insert inside the cap that probably helps that.
I am a fan of snap on caps for their quick deployment capabilities. A positive grip of cap to pen is essential to keep the cap on when you want it to stay on. This one seems to seal good based on my faucet dousing test.
Aesthetically I like the wedge formed on the top of the cap. There is a chrome guitar pick shaped chrome medallion on the top that is interesting. Leave it to the Italians to come up with an unusual and unique look. The chrome band around the bottom of the cap is attractive without unnecessary bling and the AURORA name and ITALY is engraved in it. Nice touches without the advertising billboard effect.
The unadorned clip is a clean slight taper shape which is a nice complement to the pen. The steel tension and entrance / exit ramps are well designed so clipping it on clothing, bags, folders etc. works nicely.
The Style uses conventional cartridges or converter. The pen came with a large cartridge ink of the blue/black hue which got me writing quickly. The feed primed much faster than a lot of cartridge fillers I have used. I understand a converter is available so I would reach out to Pen Chalet at purchase time if you’re more of the bottled ink type.
The steel nib is a traditional sized fine. It’s not especially ornate but it has some attractive scrolling, an F for fine and AURORA engraved on it. Out of the box the tines appear to be well aligned and flow was about a 7 on a scale of 1 (Dry) to 10 (Soaked). A wetter nib tends to fatten up a typical FINE line of ink. I suspect the Style supports that habit though I’ve never had any other Aurora nibs to compare it to. The ink line laid down by the Style is a good representation of FINE, no leans to a medium width or X-Fine. Just a wet FINE and that suits me very well.
The writing experience is comfortable. My FINE nib example wrote every time without hesitation, skipping or slow starts. I didn’t get any ink blobbing and leaving the cap off for 15 minutes didn’t bother it a bit, started right up. I can’t fault the Style’s reliability, consistency and ink to paper transformation at all. I would prefer the nib to be a little bit smoother. This could be partially attributable to choosing the FINE over a MEDIUM nib. MEDIUMs typically lay down more ink which can act as a lubricant and smooth out a nib to paper marriage. The nib doesn’t grab or drag and some writers even enjoy this bit of tooth and feedback from the pen.
I’m glad I’ve tried what the Italians have to offer. I suspect a medium nib with some Noodlers ELL lubricating type ink could make a positive impact for my writing with motor oil on glass tastes. I still really like the pen and if you like the styling, which I do, you can’t go wrong for the investment.
SPECIAL OFFER: If you want to try a Style or any of the fine pens that Pen Chalet carries don’t forget to use the code MYPENNEEDSINK for 10% off.
Any fine Italians in your collection?
Remember: Write something nice……