2021 Penbbs 348 Test Limited Edition Pump Filler Fountain Pen Unboxing and Review

Jun 19, 2021 14:00 · 3284 words · 16 minute read

operator could you help hello there welcome to my channel my name is doug and i’m back with another fountain pen review and thank you in advance for liking and subscribing to my channel your support allows me to continue to do these reviews so thanks i thought this review would never happen when pen bbs comes out with a new model new filling system new acrylic we pin bbs fanatics are all over it like a fat kid on a tootsie roll all right son i’m gonna need those two hams back i don’t have any hams lift up your shirt son i need an adult i need an adult you’re not a shoplifter you’re just a fat kid hey tom he’s just a fat kid here’s some chocolate fatso thanks you’ll find pen bbs nuts on sunday morning etsy drop days hitting refresh like they were buying comic-con tickets it’s live go go go go i’m one of those nerds and then pen bbs came out with the new test model 348 last january all of us youtube reviewers were clamoring to get one because they were going to be extremely limited i went to the chinese site taobao to get one for me and one for my colleague alan light of the youtube channel what i inc so we could do a joint review like we’ve done in the past those orders were cancelled due to a lack of stock then we waited for bunny to drop them on etsy this was now mid-march and most of my colleagues had already received and reviewed the pen both allen and i bought one he received his in about three weeks and i got my 348 last week here it is the pen bbs 348 pump filler it’s a little late but alan and i were able to do our joint review i already posted our zoom discussion yesterday and i’ll link that and alan’s review in my description below so this review is going to be something old and something new this now five month old test model 348 and news that just happened yesterday jilong sioux the head of pen bbs and the lead designer has released photos of new pen bbs nibs no not the calligraphy nibs which are exciting enough but wait for it gold yes pen bbs is making 14 karat gold nibs and not just any gold nibs look at this i can hardly believe my eyes look at these beautifully engraved number six size 14 karat gold nibs be still my beating heart so long here is my credit card charge whatever you want just send them to me now like now i’ll send a cargo jet did i say now i mean right now i’m sure you’ve all heard by now the acronym npd new pen day well this is an nmpd which is a new missing pen day finally this pen is in my possession i thought it would come crushed or it would not come at all i ordered this on march 14th and today is june 8th it didn’t even show up in canada until just the other day the tracking said it was stalled in china so i’m very pleased to get this package because it’s not just one pen it’s two that i was worried wouldn’t arrive so let’s open it up and find out and the first one out of the box is the three two three i’ve got a number of three two threes and i love them all it’s it’s probably the most ergonomic fountain pen uh desk pen that i’ve ever held and i thought i had enough three two threes to satisfy me but my friend chris rapsaic said to me you might know him better as chrisrap 52.

he said to me have you tried one of the metal ones yet and yeah not so much he said you should really try one of these well you always do what chris tells you to do so this one i waited and waited until i got one that was in a color that i liked it finally came up it’s the mocha color and next out of the box is it’s a three four eight so let’s open it up so here we are this is in i think vermouth green isn’t one of my favorite colors but i didn’t have a choice because this was all that was left but it’s the filling system that’s different here the end comes off and there’s a button and it’s like a vacuumatic filler with a spring load so i’m interested to give this a try and do a review on this pen and see how effective that filler is something to finally look forward to and what i’d like to do today is go over the parts and features of this pen show some size comparisons some measurements and then provide a writing sample after the writing sample please stay tuned as i will talk about what i like and what i don’t like so much about this fountain pen but first the breaking bad news just yesterday as i write this zhilongsu his nickname is long posted some intriguing photos on instagram which seemed to show 14 karat gold number six size pen bbs nibs with some of the most intricate non-laser etched but what looked like hand engraved a scroll and filigree work i’ve ever seen as to be expected penn bbs fans have been gasping oohing and awning and tossing virtual cash at these photos demanding to know when we can get our greedy and inky fingers on these jewels and i’m one of them i’ll update you on my community tab when and if i find out any more about these remarkable items alan and i were just gushing about these new developments from pen bbs i was saying that there’s no other pen company in the world as innovative and with such an amazing collection of models and finishes and allen went so far as to say that that was true not just now but also in the history of fountain pen manufacturing over the last 150 years i tend to agree let me know your thoughts on these new nibs from pen bbs in the comments section below and now to the 348 this is a very familiar item the pen bbs flagship model is the pen bbs 308 i’ve repeatedly called it the best fountain pen for the buck on the market and for good reason i’ll link my best fountain pen in the world video in the description and you can listen to my reasoning there the 348 is a 308 with a different filling system pen bbs was very careful when releasing this pen to the market to indicate that it is a test model and will not be up to pbs standards they warned buyers to expect flaws they almost encouraged people not to buy the 348 if they were at all concerned about quality you need not have worried not that it matters anymore as they’re all gone but this pen is very well made and compares favorably and even surpasses many other pbs models so my take on this pen is they took their tried and true pen bbs 308 replaced the zero with the four and called it a 348 then they hacked off the end and installed a ring and a blind cap then they inserted the vacuumatic type pump filler yes i know it’s not a vacuum attic because there isn’t a diaphragm inside but a piston technically anything that isn’t made by parker isn’t a true vacuum attic anyway but this mechanism here functions in a similar fashion this button goes up and down pushing the piston inside this little cylinder which creates the vacuum inside the barrel drawing ink up the breather tube and this is where pen bbs had to make another change to the stock 308 they had to remove the tail part of the stock feed to create a hole in it to insert the fine breather tube ink is sucked up the breather tube and into the barrel then you pump again and create another vacuum and more ink is sucked up parker did this with the rubber diaphragm and wingsung does it with a thicker piston in the wingsong601 here’s my new 601a in teal and it came with a tool to take the filling mechanism out very convenient and you can see where there’s a piston there that goes up and down inside the barrel and creates the suction that way the other slight change from a stock 308 is that the fins on the feed are more substantial on the 348.

fragile fins on the pen bbs feeds have been a common complaint from users and it’s nice to see penn bbs responding you can see how the fins are thicker here on the 348 than on the standard feed initially i just thought that pen bbs lopped off the end of a 308 barrel and fit the pump filler inside but careful measurement of the barrel proves that the 348 barrel is dimensionally different from the 308 the blind cap end is bulkier than the 308 has to be expected as it has to house the button but the barrel is different as well allen noticed this without measuring just by the feel of this pen because it felt girthier in his hand and he’s right i put my digital calipers on both barrels and the 348 is thicker at the back end by almost a millimeter so this is a truly new turned barrel shape for this pen the threads are all the same so we can swap the barrels and the caps and the sections between the 308 and the 348 but the 348 barrel is indeed thicker where it rests in the web between your thumb and your index finger knuckle it shows how sensitive the human touch is to size differences that extra girth causes the first big problem with this pen unlike the 308 it doesn’t post that cap can’t go over that blind cap and that ring so i’m not going to go over every detail of the pen here you can see my reviews of the 308 on my channel for that but let’s look at the filling system this is another great thing about the 348 it is a pump filler that you can disassemble when parker made the vacuum attic they made it so you couldn’t take it apart they didn’t want you messing around the pen but we want to mess around with our pens and long and the pen bbs crew know that because they’re fountain pen geeks not international business people so they made the 348 to come apart you can take off the section you can unscrew the nib unit you can take off the blind cap and you can unscrew this filling mechanism all without tools and you can clean everything out in seconds i put my little squeeze bulb right over the little breather tube and squirt water through the section i shoot water in the barrel and clean it all out in seconds you shouldn’t need to disassemble the pump filler any further than taking this unit out there are two silicone o-rings right there that you might want to apply a little bit of silicone grease to and the mechanism has a ton of screw threads here to ensure a good seal when i first got this pen i filmed the first time i inked it and i did a short writing sample here’s that video now so i thought i’d take an opportunity to film uh cleaning out and disassembling this three four eight so i’ll take the cap off and we’ll take the blind cap off here and i’m going to take a section off and of course there’s a breather tube attached to this section which makes it the feet which makes the feed slightly different than an ordinary feed so i don’t think you can swap feeds or nib units so let’s take that nib out of there just unscrews there’s our nib unit and then let’s look at the business end of the pen this bit here should unscrew from the end of the barrel so it is very slick so i’m going to use a elastic band to unscrew that so it’s quite a few turns to get it out of there and it looks like that ring is on there pretty good that’s good and there’s the mechanism and it’s basically just a a tube with a piston a couple of o-rings on the outside and a spring actuator that pushes that little plunger up and down and it creates a suction and pulls ink up through the nib and it should go through the breather hole and spills down outside so there are parts i don’t want to take that apart any further than it is i don’t know whether you can or not but that’s moving very nicely in there so i don’t think it requires any silicone grease you might want to add some to these little o-rings right here but it feels fairly greasy to begin with which is good it’s been lubricated so there are parts we’ll put it back together again and ink it up this gives me an opportunity to use my new eroshizuku shinkai we’re going to dip the pen into the ink and push the button up and down as many times as it takes until i hear no more bubbling in the ink once you get the rhythm of it it’s doing it too fast it seems to fill up quite well once you get the rhythm the end cap back on get out some paper typical fine nib from pen bbs right it’s very dry i’m going to try to open it up just a touch that’s very stiff three four five six seven much wetter see how fast that is let’s see how smooth it is okay that’s very nice the nib is a standard pen bbs fine mini food a waverly style steel nib that has that slight upturn to the tip as you saw in the first writing out of the box like most pen bbs nibs it wrote very dry this is by design by pen bbs to get it wetter was as simple as your wife’s cousin i just pressed it down firmly without springing the nib and made seven strokes and now it is a smooth and wet and wonderful nib the inside of the cap shows a ledge milled into the turned acrylic that meets the section to seal the nib cap does not post as i mentioned but the pen bbs 308 and this slightly girthier 348 are marvelously comfortable in the hand unposted and the section is just perfection i can write with a 308 until the cows come home oh give me a home where the cattle all roam and i’ll show you a filthy house i bought this pen at the official pen bbs etsy store for 28.

99 u. s including shipping six dollars well spent for a 99-day trip i love anticipation what this test model was made in extremely limited numbers and is now no longer available now let’s look at some size comparisons and here is the pen bbs 348 test edition in vermouth with a pen bbs 308 amber is a cat a pen bbs 480 in cedar a wing song 601a in teal and a wingsung 601 in blue and this is a piston filler now let’s look at them posted and here they are posted you can see that the 348 does not post and cap does not stay on but the others post very nicely now let’s look at some measurements and i’ll be back with a writing sample and we’re back with the writing portion of the review this is clairefontaine 90 gsm paper and this is the pen bbs three four eight and it has a fine steel knit let’s check the wetness you can see this is very very wet now very nice opening up those tines with my patent-pending doug’s seven strokes to wet happiness method made this pen really excellent the nib is glassy smooth and comes as no surprise anymore i don’t remember the last nib from penn bbs that wasn’t excellent and the ink today is iroshizuku i bought this blue black ink to pair with my new narwhal schoolkill poor pita fountain pen it’s a piston filler i’ve yet to review and here are some close matches to this ink from inkswatch.

com that’s the line variation this is a very stiff steel nib as usual with pen bbs and i don’t want to push it any further than that because it’s already wet enough it’ll be interesting to see if the new 14 karat gold pen bbs nibs have much flex or balance to them this line is 0. 5 millimeters which is a western fine and the japanese fine to medium and for our quote and reverse writing actually works very well it’s very thin and the feed is keeping up is a little bit scratchy and some quick writing you can see this has no difficulty keeping up whatsoever so what do i like and what do i not like about this fountain pen i was so worried that my 99 day weight for this pen would color my opinion i wasn’t thrilled with my taobao failures and that when they were finally up on etsy the color i wanted was sold out in seconds but when i inked this pen and wrote with it cleaned it out to have my discussion with alan and then re-inked it again to do this writing sample there isn’t anything i can criticize about it the nib is spectacular the pen feels great in the hand it only cost me 30 bucks unlike my now dead year of the aux or year of the dead aux and this filling system is a winner i know some people were frustrated with the filling system as alan and i discussed yesterday you have to get the right what allen called cadence to your pumping once you see and you can see how well the pen fills with methodical pumps it becomes second nature and besides so it takes 15 to 20 pumps what is that 20 seconds how long can you write with 1.

8 milliliters of ink a month 20 seconds for a month give me a break and anyway i’ve been able to fill it full with six to ten pumps in the right tempo so you put your favorite dance mix on and pump up the jam baby the only negative i mentioned earlier the pen just doesn’t post but this isn’t a production model and i’ll be anxious to see what long and his colleagues come up with from this experiment two thumbs way up here long keep up the great work and thank you for all you do for the fountain pen loving community and there you have it if you like this video please like and subscribe and don’t forget to ring that bell to get instant notifications whenever a new video is posted and that just leaves it for me to say thank you for watching and that’s all she wrote i made this.