Pilot & Namiki: Japan’s Finest Since 1915


Sterling Falcon Vanishing Point Custom 823 Custom Heritage 92 Custom 74
Standard Nibs Preground Specialty Nibs

In 1915, Ryosuki Namiki began producing gold nibs, and, in 1916, complete writing instruments. In 1918, Namiki and Masao Wada formed the Namiki Manufacturing Company, Ltd. In 1938, the company became the Pilot Fountain Pen Company, Ltd. Pilot revolutionized the fountain pen in 1964 with the introduction of the Capless, a fountain pen that offered the click-click convenience of a ballpoint, with a nib that retracts completely into the barrel.

CAUTION
CAUTION
We have observed at first hand that Noodler’s Baystate Blue can destroy the translucent plastic feeds used in Namiki and Pilot pens. We recommend that you not use Noodler’s Baystate inks in these pens.
Pens That Write Right!

Our nibs are NOT like other dealers’ nibs! Unless otherwise requested, Richard tests and adjusts every nib we sell. To make sure you get the nib size you want, read this.

Looking for a Custom Nib?

Ordering a custom nib is easy — read this pop-up “comic strip” to see just how easy it is! If you order a new pen with a customized nib, I will modify the nib for an extra charge, and in most cases we will ship the pen without extra delay.

Our return policy  ]

Namiki Sterling

Artistry in silver. That’s the Namiki Sterling collection. These smoothly streamlined pens feature elegant engravings executed in low relief and raised from the gleaming curved silver surfaces of barrel and cap to intrigue you as you feel them in the crevices of your hand. Complementing the sophisticated shape is an inset rhodium plated nib of 18K gold that gives you the writing experience you deserve — and have come to expect from our pens. Fills with Pilot cartridges or the included CON50 piston converter. Length: 513/32" capped, 511/16" posted. Click the magnifying glasses for zoomed images of these pens (more size info here).

To purchase one of these pens, first and then click the Add to Cart button below the photo with your choice of design.

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Mt. Fuji and Wave
$500.00  $400.00
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Hawk
$500.00  $400.00
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Falcon

Character is the key to the Falcon. From its 14K nib to its slightly domed cap crown, the Falcon is a dignified pen that will lend a little extra character to your handwriting. A serious writer’s pen that is both elegant and delightful to handle, Falcon offers you the ultimate in writing comfort with rhodium-plated furniture and a selection of fine, medium, or broad nibs. Fills with Pilot cartridges or the included CON50 piston converter. Length: 53/8" capped, 529/32" posted. Click the magnifying glass for an enlarged view of this pen (more size info here).

Note
Note
Despite what you may have heard or read elsewhere, the Falcon’s nib is not truly flexible. As Pilot describes it, the Falcon's nib is “soft,” designed to give a nice ride under ordinary use. The natural variation of pressure that inevitably occurs when you write will produce some small degree of variation, but this is not a controlled flex. If you purchase a Falcon expecting to use it as a flexie, you will almost surely be disappointed. Instead, buy it for what it is, a lovely, lively, thoroughly enjoyable writing instrument.

To purchase one of these pens, first and then click the Add to Cart button.

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Black, Gold-Plated Furniture
$180.00  $144.00
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Black, Rhodium-Plated Furniture
$180.00  $144.00

Pilot Vanishing Point

Click! Your pen is ready for use. Click! The nib slips out of sight and the pen’s ready to drop into your pocket or purse. At 51/2" retracted and 513/32" extended, the compact Vanishing Point is unique: it’s the only fountain pen that’s ready instantly, with a nib that you can extend or retract with your thumb just like a ballpoint. But this is no ballpoint! It’s a real fountain pen, solidly made and fitted with a smooth 18K nib that will glide across the pages of your daily status report or your private journal with equal ease. Offered in a broad array of colors — including a metalflake Chrome, the lightly textured Carbonesques, and the amazing black lacquer and abalone chips of the Raden — the Vanishing Point is the ultimate in practical pens and a pretty cool gadget besides. Fills with Pilot cartridges or the CON50 piston converter that comes with each nib unit. (If you’re the cartridge type, it’s easy to remove the converter from the nib unit and replace it with a cartridge and the cartridge cover that comes with the pen.) Click the magnifying glasses for zoomed images of these pens (more size info here). This is our most popular Pilot, and we offer it as a complete pen — or as a body only so that you can add a specialty nib easily:

  1. Put a pen body in your shopping cart.

  2. Choose an italic or other specialty nib from our NIBARAMA page.

Pens with rhodium-plated trim have matching rhodium-plated nibs. Nibs in gold-trimmed pens are unplated gold to match the trim.

To purchase one of these pens, first and then click the Add to Cart button for your desired color. Click directly on a color chip for an enlarged view of the pen in that color.

(To purchase a pen without a nib, simply click the Body only link.)

Please note: Vanishing Point nibs are not suitable for modification to add flexibility. They are made of 18K gold, which does not respond well, and their geometry is also inappropriate.

Some Vanishing Point owners prefer their pens without a clip. We can remove the clip from a newly purchased pen for $15.00 (Add to shopping cart). Please note that this is not a reversible procedure and that we prefer not to do it for pens with Matte Black trim because the clip can leave unsightly marks on the surface of the pen’s nozzle.
Fountain pen
Fountain pen color
Metallic Green
(black plated nib)
$175.00  $140.00

Body only: $84.00
Fountain pen color
Metallic Red
(black plated nib)
$175.00  $140.00

Body only: $84.00
Fountain pen color
White
(rhodium-plated nib)
$175.00  $140.00

Body only: $84.00
Fountain pen color
Yellow
(rhodium-plated nib)
$175.00  $140.00

Body only: $84.00
Fountain pen color
Black, Gold trim
(unplated gold nib)
$175.00  $140.00

Body only: $84.00
Fountain pen color
Blue, Gold trim
(unplated gold nib)
$175.00  $140.00

Body only: $84.00
Pilot Custom 823

Great ink capacity, great size, wonderful handling, what more could you ask for? It’s all right here in the Custom 823. Featuring Pilot’s take on the classic plunger filling system invented over a century ago, this pen will steal the heart of any serious writer. Made of a translucent brown resin that Pilot calls Amber, it’s a demonstrator that’s dignified instead of in your face. Packaged in a special gift box with a bottle of Pilot ink, it’s available with your choice of fine, medium, or broad 14K gold nib. Length: 555/64" capped, 629/64" posted. Click the magnifying glass for an enlarged view of this pen (more size info here).

To purchase this pen, first and then click the Add to Cart button below the photo.

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Amber
$360.00  $288.00
Pilot Custom Heritage 92

For some people, there’s nothing like a piston-filler. And while the classic European piston-filler is nothing to sneeze at, Pilot’s smooth take on the genre, the Custom Heritage 92, deserves your attention. This is one superb pen, steeped in Pilot’s long heritage of making innovative, reliable, good looking pens. Sized for the average to small hand, it’s well balanced and light in weight for those extended journaling sessions, or just for taking notes in class or a meeting. As a clear demonstrator, it’s also just a fun pen to use. Available with your choice of fine, medium, or broad 14K gold nib. Length: 525/64" capped, 529/32" posted. Click the magnifying glass for an enlarged view of this pen (more size info here).

To purchase this pen, first and then click the Add to Cart button below the photo.

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Clear
$275.00  $220.00
Pilot Custom 74

The Custom 74 is an excellent pen, well balanced and easy in the hand. It’s at the smaller end of the scale, but it’s not small — it’s a full-sized pen, long and lean and ready to record your daily life in exquistely inscribed detail. The Custom 74 is sure to attract attention as its clear or colored transparent body shows off the high-capacity multi-stroke CON70 pump converter and rhodium-plated 14K nib. Available with your choice of fine, medium, or broad nib. Fills with Pilot cartridges or the included pump converter. Length: 521/32" capped, 61/4" posted. (More size info here.)

To purchase this pen, first and then click the Add to Cart button for your desired color. Click directly on a color chip for an enlarged view of the pen in that color.

Fountain pen
Fountain pen color
Blue
$200.00  $160.00
Fountain pen color
Clear
$200.00  $160.00
Standard Nibs for Namiki and Pilot Pens

One of the really cool features of the Vanishing Point is the ease with which you can change its nib: Just unscrew the pen’s barrel and remove the nib unit as you would to refill it, slip in a different nib unit, and screw the pen back together. For other models, you change out the entire nib section assembly just by unscrewing it as for filling.

Vanishing Point nib units, with plain gold or rhodium-plated (silver colored) 18K gold nibs, come complete with CON50 piston converters. These nib units do not fit vintage Pilot Capless pens.

Note
Note to Owners of Faceted Vanishing Point or Capless Pens
Fountain pen
If your pen is a faceted Namiki Vanishing Point or Pilot Capless with a squeeze converter (like the pen shown here), you should use the pen’s original squeeze converter with your new nib or purchase a new CON20 squeeze converter. Piston converters do not fit properly in these older pens. The converter is the right length, but its metal collar stops against the brass collar inside the barrel’s back end. This interference prevents the nib unit from retracting completely, and the pen will dry out when not in use.
Stroke width thumbnail

As with the pens we sell, unless otherwise requested at the time of sale, we tune each new nib at no extra charge before shipment. We install the nib in a pen body, fill the pen with Waterman Blue-Black ink, and write with it on paper from the same fountain pen friendly pads we sell, adjusting as necessary to bring it up to the RichardsPens.com “factory” standard for smoothness and flow. Our clients have named this procedure “Binderizing.” The result is an adjusted nib, not a customized one.

If you are unsure about stroke widths, please check our stroke width chart for illustrations of stroke sizes that our nibs produce. To do this, right-click the image at the right (Macintosh users control-click) to download the chart in PDF format (for Adobe Reader). The chart is designed to print on U.S. letter-size paper (81/2"×11"), and it should also print well on A4 paper. After you have printed the chart, find some fountain pen friendly paper and make strokes on it with your own pens for comparison.

Nib unit Magnifying glass
Nib unit Magnifying glass
Nib unit Magnifying glass

Please note: Vanishing Point nibs are not suitable for modification to add flexibility. They are made of 18K gold, which does not respond well, and their geometry is also inappropriate.

— 18K Gold —
Vanishing Point (gold color, unplated) Broad Medium Fine $56.00
Vanishing Point (silver color, Rh plated) Broad
(Out of Stock)
Medium Fine Extra Fine $62.00
Vanishing Point (black color) Broad Medium Fine Extra Fine $69.00

Notes:

  1. When I test these nibs, I seat their converters completely before filling, to ensure that the nibs will flow properly in actual use and will also fit completely into the pen so that the “trap door” can close to prevent dryout. To remove the converter from a nib unit, pull firmly while twisting clockwise. (Twisting counterclockwise can unscrew the metal part of the converter from the plastic barrel.)

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