Jinhao Matte Black Pocket Missile Fine Hooded Nib Fountain Pen

Well, thanks to DIYSara (http://diysara.wordpress.com), I have now been introduced to the addictive habit of browsing eBay for affordable fountain pens… Don’t get me wrong, I’m not on there looking for that $1,000 pen and trying to get it for only $500. I’m talking about cheap (and mostly Chinese) fountain pens. This Jinhao Black Missile was the first of my purchases, and for only $4.50 (shipping was free)  I got an excellent fountain pen. Sure, it may not be a Lamy, Waterman, or Montblanc, but it is a pen, it is relatively attractive, and it writes beautifully… I’m not looking for gem-encrusted beauty, I’m looking for functionality.

So, the specs… The pen, when capped is a little shy of 4″ long (closer to 3-3/4″), and when the cap is posted, it is a little under 5″. The body and cap have a matte black finish, and the clip is chrome and has the brand name, Jinhao, embossed lightly, the only branding on the pen. The nib itself is hooded, so I can’t exactly tell the material, but I’m assuming it’s stainless, much like my Sailor Recruit. The grip area is chromed plastic (I believe, no metallic clink) and features 3 oval-shaped, grooved sections, which are actually (amazingly!) located correctly considering the nib alignment and my fingers actually rest on all three grooved sections when I hold the pen in the writing position! As a left-handed person, this is a rare find indeed.

The Black Missile fills using a “squeeze-bar mechanism” (see this link over at Richard’s Pens for more info), which I had never used before, and in the end, I actually ended up taking the metal “shield” off and carefully squeezing the sac itself to draw the ink up into the pen (not sure what it was, but the bar just didn’t seem to be doing the job properly)… I’m sure I’ll get blasted for this by some fountain pen enthusiast, but I care not, because it worked…

So, I flushed the pen out with water (as you should with any new fountain pen, I’m assuming…), let it dry, and then filled it up with J.Herbin 1670 Ink. It worked fine, but I hate how the 1670 takes forever and a day to dry and is not water-fast at all, so I only put a small amount in the pen and then flushed it once more. The second fill, I put in black Parker Quink, which I got with a Parker Urban Fountain Pen Kit (yes, my list of inks basically boil down to blue-black and black Parker Quink, J. Herbin 1670, and the remains of a small vial of Noodlers Bulletproof Lexington Grey that Note Booker Esq. sent me with a pen I won), and it wrote, and dried, like a dream. I think I might’ve found my new “everyday” fountain pen…

The pen writes with a very fine line, easily comparable to in between a 0.5 and 0.7mm gel pen depending upon paper, especially for a fountain pen, and I must say that I’m very pleased with its performance. While it is a little small, even with the cap posted, I definitely think I can used to this neat little pen and easily recommend it to anyone looking for an affordable and fine fountain pen solution. Also, you can find the seller as well as some of these fine writing instruments and others at: http://stores.ebay.com/sjg1953pens