This is a pen I’ve been looking at for a while now, but for one reason or another, had just never pulled the trigger on. Then a few weeks ago I was corresponding with the fine folks at GoldSpot Pens, and they kindly offered to send one to me for review. Awesome folks there, you should really check them out!
I. First Impressions 7.5/10
So first, just a quick few comments in general about Lamy, the company itself. Lamy is a German company, known in the US primarily for it’s modernist take on fountain pens. The Safari, and 2000 lines have become mainstay pens in the US market among “pen” people. This pen certainly fits in with the company’s modern take on pens, but may not wind up a stand out, as those previously mentioned. That would primarily be because those pens have a very specific uniqueness that makes them stand out. This pen, while very nice, and somewhat unique, feels more like a blend of other pen’s attributes. In my mind, the Aion is most closely related to the 2000. Kind of it’s “workhorse” 1st cousin.
My first impression was of the box, and the fact that they use the exact same packaging as the Lamy 2000. Upon taking the pen out, my first two thoughts were that it looks very minimalist and that it felt substantial. It has some real heft and weight.
II. Appearance 7/10
My pen was the matte silver model (it also comes in matte black). A handsome pen! I have several Lamy models including the venerable Lamy 2000. This pen shares much of the 2000’s heritage. Clean lines, minimalist design. The body of the pen also looks very similar to another German pen, the Faber-Castell Loom. While the Aion is considerably larger, both have an aluminum cylindrical body that flows into a long section with no step down.
Where the Lamy 2000 looks elegant (at least to me), the Aion looks more utilitarian. It’s certainly not flashy. Although the silver version is arguably “flashier” than the black.
III. Design / Size / Weight 8/10
As previously stated, I would describe the Aion’s design as definitely, minimalist and modern. The pen was designed by a gentleman named Jasper Morrison. The body and cap are anodized aluminum in kind of a circular brushed pattern. The section appears like a bead-blasted finish. Some measurements:
- Diameter at grip – 10.6mm
- Length of body – 137mm
- Length Capped – 143mm
- Length posted – 162mm
- Weight – 35 grams inked
The clip is spring loaded (which is nice), and very, very — plain. Boring, one could say. But boring isn’t always bad, I guess. Also, and this is odd to me, when you lift the clip, you can see 3 – cut outs – for lack of a better description. I have no idea what their purpose is. Maybe there’s not one.
Overall, I definitely like it. It has a modern, clean look, not at all futuristic as I would say the Safari, Vista and Al Star are. That being said, the pen does have some issues for me. The section’s large girth is quite comfortable, however, with extended use – long writing sessions – it can get a little slick for me. Not terrible, as it’s somewhat textured, but slick nonetheless. Also, the cap does post. However it is somewhat loose and I find that I usually don’t post it for that reason.
IV. Nib 8/10
Lamy hit a home run with the Aion nib. It’s stainless steel and very smooth, and yet at the same time, provides just the slightest hint of feedback on paper. The nib is reminiscent of the Safari line of nibs, but with slightly more rounded shoulders. The nib slides onto the feed exactly like the Safari nibs and can even be interchanged with them if you so desire.
V. Filling System 7/10
Pretty simple and standard. It takes either cartridges or a converter. However they are Lamy propriety sizes, not international. Otherwise, this score would’ve been 9/10.
VI. Cost and Value 7.5/10
GoldSpot currently has this pen listed at $71.20, down from $89. While this (in my opinion) wouldn’t be called an entry level pen, it’s not a high-end pen either. This is a work horse pen. A good looking, work-horse pen. And again (in my opinion) a solid value for the money.
VII. Conclusion 7.5/10
This is a bit of an odd pen for me. Before laying my hands on it, it was a pen that I was interested in, but truthfully, more so because it was a new pen from Lamy. I wasn’t necessarily in heat to get one. However, after having it and using it for the last week or so, I would DEFINITELY want to replace it if anything were to happen to it. Immediately.
Here’s a companion video review: