Pocket Pursuits

Kaweco Sport Review

Kaweco Sport pens come in a wide range of colours, with special editions released regularly. These two recent offerings are from the limited edition Kaweco Collection 2022, both in blue. The first is a turquoise, aluminium AL Sport model in “Iguana Blue”. The other is the pastel, plastic Classic Sport in “Mellow Blue”.

The Kaweco Sport was first introduced in 1935 by German company Kaweco. he model has changed little since, other than in the range of colours and materials available. Originally only available in plastic, the Sport range has expanded to offer Aluminium, Brass, Carbon Fibre and, most recently, Bronze. Clearly, with an 88 year pedigree and an extensive range, this pen must be doing something right.

First impressions

The Kaweco Sport is a pocket pen that can best be described as dinky. The nib is quite tiny, designated as 060 size by Kaweco. It is supposedly the same as a No.5 nib, but it looks smaller. Overall the pen measures 10.5cm capped, so will fit most pockets, even those in ladies’ clothing. If you are familiar with vintage pens, many of which are small by modern standards, this may not be present a problem. If, on the other hand, you favour a No. 8 nib in a chunky pen, the Sport is definitely not the pen for you.

Further away, not smaller!

Whilst I was drawn to the aluminium Iguana Blue, (I’m a sucker for a nice, bright turquoise), the plastic Mellow Blue did nothing for me. I’m not a fan of plastic pens an this Classic feels cheap and not particularly pleasing in the hand. I don’t like the colour either, which probably didn’t help endear the pen to me. The AL Sport is only very slightly different to the Classic, in that the barrel is smooth at the end.

The Sport does not come with a converter, which you have to buy separately, as you do the clip and pouch. Whilst this is usually enough to make me see crimson, the mini Kaweco piston converter is a bit…erm, how should I put this tactfully…not great? Kaweco pens do take International Standard short cartridges though, so you will have a wide range of ink brands and colours to play with at your disposal. This is not necessarily a bad thing, if you are aiming for maximum portability and mess-free re-inking. A Kaweco Sport and a couple or three spare cartridges in your pocket are certainly not going to weigh you down.

Writing Experience

As I mentioned, the 060 nibs are really quite dinky, but write well enough. The pen responds well to a light touch and lays down ink effortlessly. If you are comfortable with small pens, you will enjoy using this one.

Writing Sample

The barrel length is short, even by vintage standards, and the Sport is designed to be used with the cap posted. Personally, I dislike posting my pens as this potentially causes wear and marking on the barrel. I have vintage pens that have an unattractive ring around the barrel as a result. It is possible to write with the Kaweco Sport without posting, but this is not sustainable for more than brief jottings, unless you have small hands.

The balance is slightly better with the cap posted, giving the Sport a bit more heft and length. That said, brief scribblings without the cap posted were not uncomfortable either.  This pen is essential designed to be used on the go and I can’t see it being anyone’s first choice for writing an essay. In short, it does what it says on the tin…well, it doesn’t say that on the tin and these didn’t come with a tin anyway, but you know what I mean!

In Summary

The Kaweco Sport writes well enough and if you want a very light, highly portable pocket pen, then this is certainly an option to consider. The Sport has an impressive pedigree and history, not to mention a wide range of options both in terms of colour and materials. I can understand why these have remained popular for nearly 90 years!

Personally, I’m not that taken with the plastic model. I do rather like the aluminium one, but for what they are, I feel that both are a tad overpriced. Kaweco has an RRP of €23.95 and €79.50 for the Kaweco Collection Classic Sport and AL Sport, respectively. This does not include the optional extras, such as a converter, clip or pouch, which could add up to another £25 to the cost.

I can see the attraction of having a pen you can just keep in a small pocket or bag, along with a pack of cartridges, when you are “on the go”. Although, other pocket pens in similar style are available* and there are a wide range of equally portable pocket pens on the market. However, one can’t fault the pedigree or quality of this enduring model from Kaweco.

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Cap posts (if you prefer this)
  • Good for “on the go” use
  • Takes International Standard Cartridges
  • The plastic model feels cheap
  • Overpriced
  • Cap really has to be posted (not ideal if you prefer not to)
  • Clip not supplied
  • Converter not supplied
  • Pouch not supplied
Who is it for
  • Lovers of pocket pens
  • Kaweco brand fans
  • On-the-go jotters
  • People with small hands
  • The Borrowers
The lowdown

Available from all the usual specialist retailers, you can find both models at The Writing Desk for £73.80 and £22.80, respectively. Prices may vary at other retailers with the AL Sport ranging between £72-£80 and the Classic £23-£26.

Kaweco Sport pens do not come with clips, though these can be bought separately. The snag is that they just slide on, so can as easily slide off again if you aren’t careful.  Neither do they come with a converter, another optional extra if you want to use bottled ink. Both are around the £5-£6 mark. If you want to protect your pen from knocks and scrapes, a Kaweco pen pouch will set you back a further £9-£20, depending on the model.

If you want to learn more about the Kaweco Sport range, US retailer Jet Pens has a comprehensive guide to the range here 


*Notably, the Delike Alpha and Lanbitou 3062, both of which I use regularly. Although both of these could be classed as clones, they are not identical copies and I had no qualms about buying them. My Alpha has a “bent” nib** and the 3062 has a hooded EF nib, neither of which are options available from Kaweco. Both are slightly longer than the Kaweco.

**The “bent” nib is not an obvious Fude nib, rather one where only the very tip has an upturn. 

These pens have been lent to the United Inkdom group for independent review purposes with no affiliation or reward.

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