Budget Perks

Kaweco Perkeo Review

The Kaweco Perkeo is the entry level pen offering from long established German pen makers, Kaweco. Comparable in price point to the Lamy Safari, it also has a similar triangular grip section.  This is something of a marmite feature, with some people loving how it guides your grip, and others hating it for the same reason. As someone who holds a pen “correctly”, I don’t have an issue with it. I think that it is a useful feature for beginners, which is the target market for this pen.

First impressions

To be honest, this feels like a much cheaper pen than the (approx.) £15 price point suggests. Very lightweight and plasticky, it is more on a par with the £5 Platinum Preppy.  I’m not a pen snob, but do admit that I am not a huge fan of demonstrators, (i.e., transparent plastic pens), even slightly frosted ones, or indeed plastic pens generally. That said, I do own several Platinum Preppys for sketching and am entirely happy with them for that purpose. For the record, I’m not crazy about Lamy Safaris either, preferring the  aluminium bodied Al-Star, so it is safe to say that I am not in any way the target market for this pen.

Aesthetically, it is a pleasant enough shape, with a faceted cap and body that will prevent it rolling off your desk whether it is uncapped or not. It does not have a clip, so that may be an issue for some. Personally, while I find clips quite useful and generally prefer them, I also have several pens without, so this is not a dealbreaker.

Writing Experience

I can’t say I’m blown away by the writing experience at all. Fine nibs can often be on the scratchy side and this is no exception. Quite frankly, I have had considerably cheaper pens with fine nibs that write much better. I suspect a medium nib would be smoother and more suitable for a beginner.

As a sketching pen, I can see its appeal due to its light weight and fine nib. Indeed, it performed better when I was doodling than when I was writing. I’m not sure what I do differently – perhaps a lighter touch or slightly different angle when sketching than writing.

The triangular grip section is, I feel, a useful feature on a beginner’s pen, helping to quickly orient the nib correctly and encourage a proper grip. It’s not a particular hindrance in a sketching pen either.

In Summary

The best that I can say about the Kaweco Perkeo that  it is mostly harmless. For me, this is the Bic equivalent of a fountain pen. Perhaps it is the faceted plastic body that cements that particular association in my mind, but I just can’t see past that. It does, at least, take a converter so there is scope for using a variety of inks; handy for sketching. However, the converter will set you back an additional £6 or so, taking the price up to £20+. For me this takes it beyond the “it doesn’t matter if it gets lost, broken or stolen” budget for school children. And if this is not an issue, then there are plenty of other budget pens that are nicer. The Kaweco Perkeo is definitely not a pen that will forge nostalgic memories and be handed down to one’s children.

Pro
  • it can be used with a converter
  • triangular grip section is good for beginners
  • Faceted, anti-roll design
  • lightweight
Con
  • quite expensive for a “cheap” pen
  • no clip
  • no converter supplied
  • plastic
Who is it for
  • Children new to FPs
  • Sketchers
  • Closet Bic-fanciers
The lowdown

Available at all the usual online pen outlets*, this pen will set you back around £15, plus an additional £6 or so for a converter. This makes it slightly cheaper than a Lamy Safari, but a lot more expensive than the sub-£5 Platinum Preppy.   It is also available is a range of funkier colours.

*Cult Pens, Pure Pens

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