FPGeeks Scorecard Omas Ogiva LE Fountain Pen

Review Specificaitons

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-19


Pen Class: Executive ($500-$999)
MSRP:: $695
Street Price:: $556

Body Material: Cotton Resin
Nib Material: 18k Gold, 14k Extra Flessible
Nib Size: 18k: EF, F, M, B; 14k: EF, F, M
Cap Type: Screw On/Off
Post-able: Yes
Filling Mechanism: Piston
Ink Capacity: 1.7mL
Overall Weight: 23g/0.8oz
Body Weight: 13g/0.5oz
Overall Length Capped: 146.5mm/5.77″
Overall Length Posted: 173.4mm/6.83″
Length Uncapped: 128.3mm/5.05″
Nib Length: 21.8mm/0.86″
Cap Diameter w/o Clip: 14.8mm/0.58″
Cap Diameter w/Clip: 17mm/0.67″
Section Diameter: 10.8-12.5mm/0.43-0.49″
Barrel Diameter: 13.4mm/0.53″

If this pen were a movie, it would be…

Better Things (2008)

Review Dealer Prep

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-5

Azizah: 9.5 – This is one of the few Executive priced pens I have used and of those few, this has one of those boxes I particularly like. While I know I can only keep so many fountain pen boxes, this would be one I would keep forever. The outer sleeve is very pretty, being a metallic slate color, and the inner box is felted and safe. The little pen sleeve inside is a bonus – also felted, and with the Omas logo on it. The presentation matches the price tag and, having never used an Omas before, it set my expectations high for the pen inside.

Dan: 9 – The packaging for the Omas Ogiva is exactly the same as that found with the previously reviewed Vintage 360 Turquoise. It presents the pen very well and is of such high quality that discarding it would feel like a waste.

It may seem insignificant, but I very much enjoy the included pen sleeve. I’ve found that whatever material Omas uses does an excellent job of staying in place inside a pants pocket, resisting gravity’s pull to the bottom where keys, coins and other objects of destruction reside. I only use it when I’m not wearing a shirt with a pocket, which isn’t very often, but I’m glad I have it when I need it.

Review Filler Up

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-12

Azizah:  5.5 – I was sorely disappointed by the filling mechanism on this pen. I generally love piston-filling systems because of how easy they are to use, that is, no taking the pen apart to ink it, and the ink capacity is great. However, when I inked this pen up, I cringed at the sensation vibrating through my hand as the piston ground through the barrel. It felt cheap and rough, and I felt like I was forcing the piston down. Furthermore, the piston actually squeaked as it moved. It is likely this could be fixed with some lubrication, but I would expect an Executive pen to be ready to go.

Dan: 6 – Piston fillers are my favorite type of filling system but the one on the Ogiva was a disappointment. While it does function, it feels like a cheap converter. The action is stiff at the beginning of the movement and the piston sticks throughout the entire length of the barrel. Near the end of its stroke, when the piston is almost completely extended, the action loosens up and feels completely different than it does at the beginning of the stroke.

During my time with the Ogiva I only used Noodler’s Eel inks, which is supposed to help lubricate pistons but I failed to notice any improvement. Then I thought the piston just needed to be used, as if there might be a break-in period, but after cycling the piston a few dozen times I still couldn’t feel an improvement.

This kind of thing is unacceptable from a company like Omas and certainly so from a pen in this price range. I would definitely send it back for repair or exchange, and if it came back the same way, then I’d ask for a full refund.

If TWSBI can put an excellent piston in a $50 pen, then why can’t Omas put an acceptable one in a pen that costs north of $550?

Review Test Drive

Azizah: 7.5 – Even though I was disappointed by the piston mechanism, I was otherwise pleased with the initial use of the pen. It fit my hand pretty perfectly unposted, but even posted, it didn’t feel too long nor too heavy, so that was great. Despite the threads being close to the section where one would grip for writing, I comfortably wrote during my brief test drive. The first thing I want to know with an 18K gold nib is if it has spring so I was pretty happy to find this one did give me a little bit of juice at the right angle! That sweetened the deal for me quite a bit. On the other hand, aesthetically, I was not particularly taken by the pen at this point. The translucent green resin just made me think of a colored demonstrator and did not wow me in any way. I did select Caran d’Ache Amazon green ink for this pen, because sometimes matching ink color to pen color is fun.

Dan: 7 – The Test Drive was rather uneventful. After being introduced to the disappointing piston filler I put nib to paper and was greeted with the same stunning nib as found in the Omas Vintage 360 Turquoise.

You’ll be happy to know that I didn’t run into any issues during my first stint with the Ogiva, but there wasn’t any excitement either. The initial experience was mostly void of an emotional response.

Review Under the Hood

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-10


Azizah: 8.75 – At first, I felt the appearance of the nib was a little underwhelming, given it is a limited edition, executive priced pen. It is fairly simple and understated, but it does match the body design and metal trim quite well. The design on the nib is very clean and very well done, right down to the tiny Omas logo. The nib itself is a decent size, coming to an attractive long, fine point. It has grown on me, simplicity and all.

I am quite pleased with the section – which tapers so gradually from the center of the pen all the way to the nib that it could be suitable for just about anyone. The threads are so smoothly integrated into the section because there are no obvious steps that I suspect even those with death grips would be comfortable using this pen. Yes, I love this section.

Dan: 9.5 – I really do love the nib in the Ogiva. It’s very nearly a vintage semi-flex with good responsiveness. That means there’s enough stiffness in the nib to prevent the tines from spreading when under normal pressure, but there’s easily enough line variation to make your writing more interesting when you put a little effort into it. The takeaway here is that Omas doesn’t use a super soft nib to achieve its flex and thus doesn’t have that mushy feel. Omas have also done well to pair the nib with an ebonite feed that doesn’t have a problem keeping up with the nib, even when flexing it for an entire page.

In addition to the outstanding performance of the nib and feed, I’m a big fan of Omas’ nib imprint. It’s simple and pleasing and even denotes the size of the tip in the lower left of the nib. I also enjoy the metal band at the front of the section which I find accents the nib quite well. The only thing I didn’t care for was the rose gold coloring. While it does pair nicely with the dark blue resin, I think I would be much happier with the Hi-Tech trim on the green pen.

Review Performance

Azizah: 8.5 – I first wrote at a high angle and felt the nib was a touch dry and had too much feedback. I lowered my angle and found a much wetter flow, as well as some spring, and much greater line variation, thus happily discovering what I suspect is the nib’s sweet spot. It is not a buttery smooth nib and that could be because it is a fine nib, but that’s okay.

The agate rolling stone on the clip makes clipping the pen to papers quite easy as it prevents the rather heavy and snug clip from catching and tearing pages. A nice feature in concept, but the clip is overly tight – I had to hold the pages down and carefully slide the clip onto the pages, which isn’t very efficient.

I very much enjoyed posting this pen. I am usually careful when posting because I worry about pushing the cap too far and not being able to remove it, or worse, scratching the back of the pen when I pull the cap off, but the back of the pen is so smoothly tapered that the cap glides on that posting it feels so natural.

What is also pretty cool is I carried this pen around with me and it didn’t drip ink into the cap, nor did it dry out or have any hard starts – all qualities I love in a fountain pen.

Dan: 8 – In general, the Omas Ogiva is a really good pen. It functions perfectly well, but doesn’t feel as refined as a pen in this price range should. That lack of refinement comes mostly from the disappointing piston filler. However, Omas has done a wonderful job with the rest of the pen.

The clip has more than enough tension to keep the pen where you place it, but despite the roller wheel it still requires two hands to position. As is expected with injection molded parts, tolerances are very tight. There’s zero play in the cap when posting it or threading it onto the section.

Review Design Notes

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-15

Azizah: 7.5 – I do like the shape and style of the Omas Ogiva Vision. It has the shape I picture when I think of a classic fountain pen – a fairly straight forward, conservative design. It is not an ornate pen and I like that. The diameter of the body happens to be perfect for my grip so it looks great in my hand. I love the color green but in this case, I think yellow gold trim may have complemented the warmth of the green resin better. I like the touch of the green agate rolling stone on the clip, which also adds to the function of the clip.

The clip seems a little small, but it could be that the cap is quite long as well. Or perhaps the cap is not too long and it is just the clip that is short! I can’t quite put my finger on it. Either way, the combination of the two just not sitting right with me.

Dan: 7.75 – The Ogiva features a reserved, cigar-like shaped design. It’s a simple design that should appeal to a large audience, but seems a little out of place next to the triangular 360 and faceted Arte Italiana line of pens.

With the Ogiva, Omas has created a grip section with a large diameter and a miniscule step up to the barrel. Some may find the placement of the threads to be an inconvenience, but with my staggered grip they fell right between my fingers. The Ogiva turned out to be a very comfortable pen to hold and, thanks to the cotton resin, was neither too light nor heavy, even when posted.

Also, I must make a special note to point out the improved design of the inner cap. Instead of using a separate piece made from an opaque material, like on the Vintage 360 Turquoise, Omas incorporated the inner cap into the cap itself, making it all one piece, and thus the same material.

Review Detailing

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-14

Azizah: 9.5 – Having scoured every part of this pen for some sort of error or flaw, I could not find anything visible to the naked eye. With a loupe, I found a tiny unpolished piece of of resin where the clip is inserted into the cap, and a small uneven ridge at the base of the section. I couldn’t feel either with my fingers. Overall, this pen was very well made and put together.

Dan: 9.5 – Omas certainly gave the Ogiva plenty of attention when finishing the pen. I couldn’t find a flaw anywhere, which says a lot seeing how every piece of plastic is injection molded. This process usually leaves faint lines from where the two halves of the mold meet or where sprues and runners attach. But there’s no flashing to found anywhere.

Also, the slit in the cap is just large enough for the clip to fit into. On many pens there will be a large gap on the underside of the clip that makes the pen look sloppy and unfinished. It’s a little thing, but it shows Omas’ attention to detail.

The only “issue” I could find is that there’s a tiny lip where the cap meets the cap band and the transition from barrel to ring to piston knob isn’t seamless.

Review 21 Minute Road Trip

Omas Ogiva Vision Limited Edition fountain pen-8

Azizah: 7.75 – I thought I’d be able to make it through these 21 minutes without an issue. I write all the time with all sorts of pens, but writing for 21 minutes straight without a break is a different game, apparently. I won’t admit to what I listened to in order to write without stopping because it’s too shameful, but I put on my media, set a timer, and got started.

On the bright side, the ink flow is so consistent and wet that I barely needed to put any pressure on the nib for the ink to flow. I started out with a medium grip and loosened up as I wrote and figured out that a light grip was more than enough.

At the halfway mark, my arm was starting to really feel it though. I looked at the pen several times while I was writing, trying to identify the reason for my discomfort and I pegged it to the length of the pen. I opted to write with the pen posted because it posts so well, so I assumed most users would post it. As it turns out, the pen posted is just too long for my hand. More than half of the posted pen extended beyond the top of my hand, so after awhile, it started to feel unbalanced and top heavy as my hand and arm tired. Despite the great ink flow, my writing started turning into a scrawl at the 13 minute mark and was nearly illegible in the last few minutes.

Dan: 8.5 – I really didn’t start to appreciate the Ogiva until near the end of the Road Trip. There just wasn’t much about the pen that impressed me until I started doing some serious writing.

This pen is very comfortable to use during long writing sessions. Its size plays a significant role there, but so does its weight. The cotton resin resin allows a pen of this size to be lighter than one might expect, which helps reduce fatigue when creating first drafts of term papers, books, or just oodles of doodles.

Secondly, the Ogiva’s performance during the Road Trip cemented the impression of just how good the nib and feed are. It was no issue for me to write paragraph after paragraph without flexing the nib, laying down a wonderfully smooth and juicy fine line. When I wanted to add a little style and have some fun, I could apply some pressure and open up the tines and the feed dutifully obliged by providing a continuous, wet stream of ink.

As I was capping the Omas and sliding it back into my wrap, I had a new appreciation for the writing experience it capable of providing. I’m just glad I didn’t have to fill the pen and ruin the moment.

Review The Checkered Flag

Pros: Cons:
Section design Piston
Nib Price

Famous Last Words:

Azizah: I was really looking forward to experiencing and reviewing my first Omas fountain pen, and an expensive one at that. While I came to love the nib quite a bit, and was very impressed with its detailing, I just couldn’t use the pen for extended writing sessions, and I couldn’t look past the negative experiences with the piston mechanism. Especially not at this price.

Dan: When I first opened the Omas Ogiva I saw a boring, overpriced, Italian fountain pen. After using it for several weeks, I still see an overpriced fountain pen, but one with an amazing nib that’s comfortable enough to write with for hours on end. It doesn’t have the uniqueness of the 360 or Arte Italiana, but its comfort, nib, and reliability are hard to ignore. Its price and poor piston are also hard to ignore and when combined, make this pen a hard sell.

This pen was provided by Kenro Industries.

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  • Me Too

    Azizah’s a Belieber?

  • peterpen53

    I still think this is one of the best pen designs ever. I’m pleased to see you liked it. Disguised as the MoMA (solid black with only three very slender bands on the cap and the section end) it is still my most favourite pen after 13 years of collecting.
    Your issue with the piston is by no means typical for Omas pens but certainly not uncommon. I remember quite vividly that some of mine had a very stiff piston when new. However, it seems they may soften up with use as currently all my 11 Omas piston fillers operate properly and I have not had them serviced. Some of them are as good as any piston you could get and Pelikan is my gold standard in that respect.
    Azizah need not worry. An unposted Ogiva is not a small pen. In fact it is slightly longer than an unposted M800, but considerably lighter. Someone with smaller hands should not be shy using it unposted.
    I have no experience with the extra flessible nibs but, IMHO, the regular nibs belong to the very best and smoothest one could get. It really looks great in the clip.

  • Dirck in Saskatchewan

    Kreswell predicts: the future will see howls of dismay on the theme of corrosion of that beautiful band on the section.

    • http://www.gourmetpens.com/ Azizah Asgarali

      Ouch. It’s a pretty band.

  • http://www.facebook.com/will.platt.39 Will Platt

    Is the piston mechanism the same as the old style paragon? If it is, it is VERY easy to take apart (no tools, no heat) and grease. My Paragon had a sticky piston at first but it was so easy to take the mechanism apart that I really didn’t fault it because it now is very smooth.

    • http://www.gourmetpens.com/ Azizah Asgarali

      Hmm… I’m not entirely sure – it was my first Omas experience :) I didn’t want to tinker with it too much as it was a loaner! If it was easy to take apart, that would be a relief!

      • http://www.facebook.com/will.platt.39 Will Platt

        Well, it turns out I’m wrong…the mechanism is different than the old style paragon…so taking it apart would be a hard task, one that I wouldn’t want to risk with a pen that expensive.

    • http://fpgeeks.com/ Dan Smith

      Regardless of how easy it may or may not be to remove the piston, it shouldn’t be necessary in a pen that retails for $695.

      • http://www.facebook.com/will.platt.39 Will Platt

        yes. you’re right…but I’m saying that it is nice to have a pen you can maitnence yourself.

  • UK Mike

    Sounds like a great $200 pen trading on its illustrious name. (Not the first time THAT’S happened in the industry) It would definitely not be on my list whatever the review said, because frankly to my eyes, it looks cheap – and it turns out there is very little in the performance to suggest otherwise.

    • http://fpgeeks.com/ Dan Smith

      …and it turns out there is very little in the performance to suggest otherwise.

      We stated pretty clearly that its performance (nib and comfort) is one of its redeeming qualities.

  • http://twitter.com/youstruckgold youstruckgold

    Pics look great – and I’m a bit confused about colour – I like the purple tinge I see in the colour but Azizah talked about green? I just love Omas and would be very sad if we had a masquerader here

    • http://fpgeeks.com/ Dan Smith

      Watch the first ten seconds of the video. I show an image of the green one there. Kenro sent me the blue one and Azizah the green one.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nicholasyeo Nicholas Yeo

    I’m surprised by the negative remarks about the Omas piston! It’s definitely not like a Pelikan piston but I’ve not found mine to be sticky. In fact, the Ogiva Turquoise piston is smoother than the one on the Paragon and seems more efficient than the one on the 360.

  • A.J. Rosati

    I am really becoming more and more of a fan of Omas since coming to this website.

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