The Conklin Duragraph is an older pen. It dates back to 1923 when Conklin was a much younger company. Originally, the Duragraph had a very different look. The fountain pen used a lever filling system. There wasn’t too much in the way of color options, from what I could find in my research. As you can see in the picture below, a black chased pattern was fairly common for the time period. Fast forward to the late 2000’s, the Conklin Duragraph is revived. As you can see in the next picture, there were many changes to the design. Not only did Conklin add so many color choices, but they also changed the nib design and filling system. The nib became a shiny two-tone 14k gold nib. The filling system became a cartridge/converter filling system. Now, in its third evolution, the Duragraph uses the same filling system but has a steel nib. I love how there’s even more color options available than before (as you can see in the third picture). One of the great things in the pen industry is when a pen company takes a winning formula and keeps evolving it into further greatness. As evidenced by the new Conklin Duraflex Demonstrator Fountain Pen, the line keeps getting better and better.
This is a limited edition, numbered out of 1898 pieces (representing when Conklin was founded). There are so many wonderful, new things about this limited edition that I’m excited to share with you. First is the nib. Conklin and Monteverde pens have slowly integrated JoWo steel nibs into each pen. These nibs are much better than their predecessor (also a steel nib). While I personally never had problems with the previous nibs, these JoWo nibs are definitely an upgrade.
The same situation just occurred with the Conklin and Monteverde Omniflex nib. It just got an upgrade by changing over to JoWo. For those of you who are unfamiliar, the Omniflex nib is special because it’s a steel nib that uses a special cut to allow it to flex more than other modern steel nibs are capable of. This is one of the first releases to come with the JoWo Omniflex nib as a standard option. Other Conklin and Monteverde pens are switched over to the new nib as well. I should point out that this Duraflex is also available in extra fine, fine, medium, broad, and stub.
Another special thing about the Conklin Duraflex Demonstrator Fountain Pen is in its name: Demonstrator. I’ve always loved demos because seeing the inner mechanics of your pen is so much fun. It’s like all the inner secrets and workings are revealed. Usually a clear plastic or resin is just not as commonplace to find on a pen. Therefore I feel they’re a little more special. Originally, when I first saw the pictures of this pen, they looked like the resin wasn’t completely clear. Yet, as you can see from my pics (hopefully), this pen is as crystal clear as it gets! Flawless!
I feel that the clarity in this pen is important because of the next feature Conklin added. You now have a THIRD option for filling. They added an O-ring inside the pen. This means you can now use the included eyedropper to simply drop your favorite color ink directly into your pen. I filled mine with Monteverde Sweet Life Pumpkin Cake since I love the color so much (plus it’s still pumpkin season).
You can still use an international size converter or cartridges if you prefer (check out the other fun colors by Monteverde here). The barrel holds 5 mL of ink, which is truly impressive. As I noted in my previous blog about the Pilot Custom 823 (see here), it can be very important to have a larger capacity for holding ink. I was nervous about testing the O-ring, so I only filled it partially. But I’m happy to report that after plenty of travel across state lines a few times in my EDC pen case, no ink left the barrel at all – even in the cap!
What do you think? Do you have yours yet? You can check it out here.
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