The Kaigelu 316 is a pen I had been thinking of ordering for some time but for some reason I just never got round to it and last December I took the plunge and ordered the orange version and the pen arrived just before Christmas and it is now inked and sitting on the desk.
The first thing I noticed about this pen is the colour, it is much more impressive than the pictures led me to believe; the colour changes dependent upon how the light is hitting it, it can vary from a dark Seville orange marmalade colour to swirls of bright pale orange that sparkle; and if you look very closely you can see what looks like tiny specks of glitter in the resin. All in all I have to say that Kaigelu chose a very nice resin for it’s orange 316’s.
Sunlight hitting the orange resin.
So, let me take you on a tour of the pen.
The pen is a pretty standard size:
Uncapped (inc. nib): 125ml
Uncapped (ex. nib): 105ml
(All measurements approximate, none for ‘Posted’ as pen does not post.)
Just to give you a rough idea of size, capped it is about the same size as the TWSBI Eco.
Anyway, starting with the cap. This has a black finial and inset into this is the Kaigelu kangaroo logo and other than the engraving on the nib this is the only branding on the pen.
The Kaigelu logo.
Between the finial and the main body of the cap is the gold-coloured band of the clip, the clip, itself, is plain and tapers towards the bottom of the cap stopping a couple of millimetres above the double gold rings that sit approximately 5ml above the bottom edge of the cap. The clip is firm and likely to be a tight fit whether you are using it in a pocked or a pen case, overall, I think it may prove to be more decorative than practical.
The threads in the cap are well cut giving a smooth action when capping/uncapping the pen which takes about 1.5 turns. I tested it numerous times and each time the threads clicked perfectly into place with no hint of misalignment.
Moving on to the barrel, the barrel is tapered and ends in a plain black finial that is divided from the barrel by a slim gold ring and like the cap if you hold it up to the light you get a wonderful orange/amber glow. The threads for the section and the cap are very well done, in particular, the threads for the section that, despite being small, are very smooth with no hint of sharpness about them, so much so that they are unnoticeable when the pen is in use.
The section appears to be made of brass, in the main, and the outer side is black resin, which tapers towards the nib and then flares at the nib giving you somewhere to rest you finger so it doesn’t slip on to the nib. The section is also the heaviest part of the pen which, when you hold it, means it keeps the centre of balance towards the nib which ensure the nib remains tilted towards the paper creating a very nice writing experience.
Disassembled showing the main components of the pen and super smooth threads.
Finally, the last stop on our tour is the nib. I opted for a Medium nib and this is what I got; a few comparison scribbles confirmed it is a Medium nib that compares favourably with the JoWo I tested it against. The feed is a standard plastic one and it kept up well with the speed of my scribbling, it was simply realigned before use by a gentle nudge in the right direction.
The nib and feed including the Kaigelu kangaroo logo.
Having said that I did experience some slight skipping, mostly when dotting i’s and crossing t’s for some reason, and flushing the nib notably improved this. I also think my particular pen will benefit from a wetter ink; it is currently loaded with Diamine Sargasso Sea so I will be flushing it again and testing it with Oxford Blue which I have found to be a wet ink to see if that resolves the minor skipping problem.
Finally, the actual experience of writing with this pen is lovely, it worked straight out of the envelope. The ink flows well and it lays down a very even line and other than the minor skipping issue when writing a block of text it worked consistently and well.
Do I think it’s worth your pennies?
Without a doubt.
Overall, this is a very nice pen to own and use. The attention to detail, build quality and materials used are all excellent and you can see in the little details that the people who make this pen care about the quality of their products. So, for around $25.00USD this pen is definitely worth adding to your collection.
Disclaimer: The pen was purchased with my own funds at retail price. The opinions expressed in this review are my own; and I am not connected with either the retailers or manufacturers in any way.