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Thread: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

  1. #21
    Senior Member Andrew_Lensky's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Quote Originally Posted by dneal View Post
    The Noodlers ebonite Ahab(?) smelled like fishing tackle, and never did go away.
    How do you think which ebonite used in Narwhal, given that the production is located in China (presumably). It is unlikely that it is Japanese or German because they do not smell. I don't know how Ahab's ebonite smells like, but Indian celluloid smells like camphor quite strongly, I know it)).
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Rephotographed Narwhal Schuylkill 365 to show the true color and texture. Hope I did it.

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    That's lovely.

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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew_Lensky View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by dneal View Post
    The Noodlers ebonite Ahab(?) smelled like fishing tackle, and never did go away.
    How do you think which ebonite used in Narwhal, given that the production is located in China (presumably). It is unlikely that it is Japanese or German because they do not smell. I don't know how Ahab's ebonite smells like, but Indian celluloid smells like camphor quite strongly, I know it)).
    The Ahab was Indian, if I remember correctly. I think your presumption on the source of Narwhal ebonite is probably correct.

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    I have not heard that the Chinese cook ebonite. All European brands buy ebonite in Germany, the Japanese use their own ebonite. Apparently, Ranga and other Indians brands use Indian ebonite, it is also cooked in India. I had an one ebonite Indian pen is Asa, but it was odorless, I didn't have any other Indian ebonite pens. I have not heard any more about ebonite manufacturers. Maybe one of the fpgeekers knows more.
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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    A quick update on the ebonite smell. It wasnít super strong when I uncapped the pen, but now itís so faint Iím not even sure if itís there.

    It's amazing how much panic one honest man can spread among a multitude of hypocrites.
    - Thomas Sowell

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Quote Originally Posted by dneal View Post
    A quick update on the ebonite smell. It wasnít super strong when I uncapped the pen, but now itís so faint Iím not even sure if itís there.
    Either it's faded or you've acclimated.

    Typos courtesy of Samsung Auto-Incorrectô
    M: I came here for a good argument.
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    A: Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position.
    M: Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'
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  10. #28
    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Quote Originally Posted by Lloyd View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by dneal View Post
    A quick update on the ebonite smell. It wasnít super strong when I uncapped the pen, but now itís so faint Iím not even sure if itís there.
    Either it's faded or you've acclimated.

    Typos courtesy of Samsung Auto-Incorrectô
    I've considered that, but I'm not around it constantly. I just picked it up, uncapped and held the cap to my nose. No ebonite smell.

    It was wrapped in cellophane when it arrived, and I suppose it's been packaged that way since manufacture; and just has had time to "air out".

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Unfortunately, unlike sound, a cheap way to find out the strength of smell has not yet been invented )
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Love this review!

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    45 or so days later, I have to say I'm really pleased with this pen.

    Nothing wrong with the steel F nib it came with, and it regulates flow precisely. A nice crisp asian fine, as nice as any Pilot or whatnot.

    I made up my mind from the earlier question and ordered a 14k medium for it today.

    It's amazing how much panic one honest man can spread among a multitude of hypocrites.
    - Thomas Sowell

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Nice summation of a solid pen, dneal. I have a similar model to these Nautilaus pens, one that I believe may have been a limited edition for their anniversary. It was called the Narwhal (then) 365 Cano Cristales, and was made from Jonathon Brooks "Primary Manipulation" material. The basic design is the same, with the biggest difference being no portholes but an ink window near the end of the barrel; it is visible just below the end of the cap (photo below is not mine but from a site). I did replace the nib with a preferred one but the pen functions and writes well, holding a good supply of ink.


    If I'm honest, though, it just doesn't have the same... uh, hand feel for me, which is very subjective, and not a detraction on the pen. As such, I tend to not go for it as often.

    However, a pen they put out either a year or two years before, on another anniversary, was the Narwhal Schuylkill 365 in ebonite. I absolutely love this pen, as the balance, unposted, is perfect for my hand, with the hard rubber giving just another ounce or two to the pen. Again, an ink window is a nice feature, the pen is well-crafted and - for whatever reason (perfect match on section/inner cap?) this sucker virtually never dries out, no matter how long between writing sessions. Again, I oped for a nib swap, using an old Sheaffer Lifetime nib. I've actually kept my eyes out for a 2nd one of these but they are hard to find. The one below is mine.

    I used to have this pen and like a dummy, sold it. The 365 Ebonite.

    I have two nautilus (nautili??) and they will likely be keepers.

    Sent from my SM-G781V using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Interesting but $150 with not very good build quality? Is that porthole going to leak?

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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaptrax View Post
    Interesting but $150 with not very good build quality? Is that porthole going to leak?
    I think the build quality is pretty good, actually. There's a separate clear reservoir inside the ebonite. The portholes can't leak absent some catastrophic failure.

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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    So the 14k Medium arrived today. I inked it up and played with it.

    Some first impressions.

    - I like the imprint better, and it's not surprising that it's more pronounced since it's gold instead of steel. I do like the Narwhal itself in the steel nib better though, and wish it carried over with the neat nautical scrollwork.

    - It's really soft and springy. Semi-flex to some extent, although I wouldn't use it that way. The double channel feed provides plenty of ink. A F nib should provide some nice variation on downstrokes like a lower case Y or any other letter with a similar descender.

    - Manufacturing quality is good, but not quite up to the Germans or Japanese. I'm not sure what caused the marks on the underside. They're not uniform enough to be brush-marks. Stress or material flaw when rolling out the gold ribbon would be my guess. Not really a big deal, and I'm being pretty critical mentioning it.

    - Where the steel F nib it came with was adjusted perfectly, this one was way too wet. I base that on looking at the gap between the tines, through a loupe, with a light-source background (usually the sky-light in the kitchen...). There should be the slightest sliver of light still present at the tip. German nibs (Bock, Jowo) often touch - and is the source of many "too dry" or "won't write" complaints. The Bock 060 Kaweco uses is particularly representative.

    - Some baby-bottom from overpolishing makes it very smooth, but a initial skipper / hard starter. It can't be adjusted out other than adjusting it to very wet (too wet for my liking). I'm going to grind it out, and may make it a stub.

    14k on the left, Steel on the right.

    Narwhal Nibs - 1.jpeg

    14k closeup

    Narwhal Nibs - 3.jpeg

    Steel closeup

    Narwhal Nibs - 2.jpeg

    Underside of 14k (note the lines/scratches). I might take a better picture of this later.

    Narwhal Nibs - 1 (1).jpeg

    Polishing mistake. Note the left tine and how the nib slit doesn't remain parallel.

    Narwhal Nibs - 4.jpeg

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    - Thomas Sowell

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  22. #36
    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    So a little handwork cleaned everything up.

    Narwhal Nibs - 1 (2).jpeg

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    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    I didn't like the medium.

    I went ahead and just made my "Daily Grind"*. I put ever so slight of an oblique on it, and smoothed it to a well-rounded #2 Pencil.

    It's engaging. It's actually glorious.

    My favorite pen is one of those late 80's W. German 146 that needed a little maintenance. Split ebonite feed, gray window, you know the deal. I sent the nib to Greg Minuskin and had him retip it. It's one of those bouncy 14k nibs MB made back then.

    This nib, as ground, is just as engaging. I love it. It's my new favorite pen.

    Well for today anyway...

    *"Daily Grind" courtesy Jon Szanto


    Narwhal Nibs - 2 (1).jpeg
    Narwhal Nibs - 1 (3).jpeg

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    Senior Member Andrew_Lensky's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nahvalur/Narwahl Nautilus Review

    About fountain pens, inks and arts: http://lenskiy.org or watch on social networks
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