The Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen is a great beginners fountain pen. To clarify a bit, the Metropolitan is called MR in Australia but for most of the rest of the world its called a Metropolitan. When it comes to entry level fountain pens the Pilot MR collection is one of the best.
The Pilot metropolitan feels sturdy without being bulky, weighing 25 grams. Dimensions of the pen are 13.5cm capped, 12.5 uncapped and 15.5cms posted. The body of the pen is brass, which also makes it engravable. Form factor of the pen is classy as it tapers on both ends and has an understated pattern banding in the middle. The metropolitan comes in many colours with mine being the red wave model.
The lid of the metropolitan/MR is a snap closure that doesn’t come off if it’s bouncing around in your bag or pocket, so you don’t need to worry about getting ink everywhere. The only thing that’s concerning about the lid is, that when it is posted at the end of the pen for writing, it isn’t very tightly fitting. So if you tip your pen upside down while pausing to think it may come off. It also has a pocket clip that secures well to anywhere it’s clipped to. Moving right along to what you really want to know. What does it write like?
There are a few things to know, firstly they are a steel nib so there isn’t much flex and line variation. Secondly Pilot is a Japanese company and usually, Japanese nibs lay a thinner line down than the European companies. This is true for the Pilot Metropolitan. The Metropolitan nib is a very smooth writing experience, very little pressure is required to form a line, with no ink flow troubles. I find it a real pleasure to write with and the only downside is that the grip section of the pen is pretty slender and plastic so it may get slippering if writing continuously for long periods of time.
The pen comes with a cartridge and a squeeze converter. If you were to buy a comparable Lamy Safari fountain pen you have to buy your converter separately so its a plus that the Metropolitan comes with one. The squeeze converter doesn’t hold very much at all which is a pity, but you can use a syringe to refill the cartridge once it’s empty as it holds more ink. I prefer to use bottled ink and a syringe to refill my metropolitan as it is more environmentally friendly than throwing out little plastic cartridges all the time. Environmentally, the Pilot Metropolitan is a better choice than disposable pens too for the pure fact that is not disposable.
Altogether I find that Pilot Metropolitan range to be a great beginner or starter fountain pen. They are great value for money at $40.00.