Friday, December 14, 2012

A Review of the Baoer #3018 Black Sonnet Fountain Pen

First Impressions (9)
This pen looks pretty slick. Capped, it is faintly reminiscent of a Sheaffer Legacy. Uncapped, the hooded nib gives an impression of class. In fact, the appearance of the pen suggests a much costlier writing instrument.

Appearance (9)
This Baoer carries a simple elegance in its smooth, black lines, gently accented by the gold clip and cap band. The soft taper of the cap toward the body is easy on the eyes, and the gently squared ends of both the cap and the barrel provide a pleasantly unique look to what would, otherwise, be a plain, round body.

Design/Size/Weight (8)
I cannot honestly not say that I know of what this pen is made. However, though it may feel like plastic, it seems to be quite sturdy. It may not hold up to having someone sit or step on it, but mine has been pocket carried (in a pen sleeve) and used upon my desk for several months, now, and it shows no signs of wear. The section has a nice taper, which makes this pen quite pleasant to hold, and the weight is quite light. For those who grip their pen very close to the nib, this section may be uncomfortable on account of the groove between the gold and the black (on the section), which is where the cap snaps onto the body.

Nib (9)
The fine nib writes quite smoothly for such a narrow point, as it appears to be about the width of a European extra-fine nib. A bit of pressure can vary the width of lines a bit, and an even finer line may be managed by writing with the nib upside-down.

Filling System (6)
This pen takes standard international cartridges (long or short) or a standard converter, and mine came with a converter. I am going to give this section a lower rating, not for the filling itself (which is quite simple, as many converters are) but for the feed and nib flow, which tend to get “clogged” with ink at times (if the pen is not used daily), requiring a bit of maintenance with a paper towel or a bit of water, in order to get ink flowing smoothly again. However, this could be specific to my pen.

Cost and Value (9)
For what is provided (a good pen and a converter), this pen is a great value. I found the construction of the pen to be well-done and the construction of the converter to be better than a number of other standard international converters, with no flimsy parts. (Jinhao, I highly recommend a redesign of your converters, as soon as possible.)

Conclusion (8)
For a pen that is priced at less than 10 USD, the simple classiness cannot be beat. Unfortunately, I cannot speak to the flow issues with other pens of this model.

The Baoer #3018 Black Sonnet can be purchased from, here. Be sure to check out my reviews of other Baoer pens, including the Skywalker fountain pen, here, and the Skywalker rollerball, here. This review was unsolicited and uncompensated. I welcome your questions and comments.

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