Poky Z 150 Fountain Pen Review

Hello everybody…

…and sorry for not having written anything in ages – I’ve been under a lot of stress those last few months. Today, I wanted to post a review of the Poky Z 150 fountain pen on FPN, but FPN is currently undergoing major changes and offline most of the time, so I’ll just post it here. Unfortunately, I don’t know the standard FPN pen testing template by heart, but, well, whatever, here we go:

Poky Z 150 – What is it?

Obviously, it is a fountain pen. However, I don’t know exactly who makes those FPs. Poky is, as I suppose, just a brand name used by the vendor with the username „pokydady“ on eBay. AFAIK there’s no manufacturer of pens with that name, pokydady probably has the pens process-manufactured by someone else. I think it might be whoever makes the Picasso FPs because it came with Picasso cartridges and the Poky Z 150 looks a bit like the Picasso 916 – especially the section and nib – while the barrel looks very, very much like the Picasso 608. I’m actually pretty sure it’s made by the Picasso guys. This is a good thing – the Picasso pens have an excellent reputation and both pens mentioned are more expensive than the Z 150.

Why do I review it?

I got several new FPs, lately. Among them a TWSBI 580 with a fine nib and a Faber-Castell E-Motion which is known to be incredibly smooth. Both pens cost a multiple of the Poky’s price and both pens have a superb reputation and I really like them a lot. However, I found myself putting aside the TWSBI at work because the Poky was a more reliable writer and more pleasant and easier to use. This is reason enough to give the pen a review.

Aesthetics and build quality

Well, here it is:
Poky Z 150

The Z 150 is available in four colours: Orange, Red, Sky Blue and Purple. It has a hooded nib and looks pretty… slick.
It’s completely made of metal and weighs 31 grams which is 50% heavier than a Lamy Safari! Okay, 31 grams is not ultra-heavy, but it’s a lot for such a small pen. For this reason, the pen feels sturdy and robust. Sweet!

Size-wise it’s pretty much as long as a Platinum Preppy and maybe two or so millimetres longer than a Parker 51, capped:
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Uncapped, it’s a bit shorter than a Pilot 78G (or a Reform 1745), but the sections feel very similar:
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The overall build quality is fantastic for a Chinese pen. As much as I love Chinese pens (I have 25 of them), I have to admit that most of them have flaws. This one, on the other hand… okay, yes, it has one flaw, but one you can find on American pens as well. The barrel and section are great. There are three bands and usually with Chinese pens, there are gaps around at least one band. There are no gaps to be found on the Z 150, everything is seamless and smooth. The clip is firm and springy, the cap clicks into place perfectly, nothing wiggles, nothing’s too tight. So what’s the flaw? Here it is:
SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAThe hooded nib is not aligned with the, uhm, hood. Okay, even my Parker 51 has this, but not that much. It looks bad, here, but actually it’s just an aesthetic problem.

Oh, there’s another aesthetic problem – the „POKY“ logo isn’t engraved and filled all that well. It looks like those original D&D set dice when you ran out of white wax crayons, if you know what I mean.

The nib and writing

Well, this is the important bit. The tines were aligned perfectly out of the box and the ink flow is great. Usually, I prefer Chinese pens not to be perfect writers so I have something to play with. But this is a hooded nib, so I’m actually glad I didn’t have to fiddle with it.

This Poky Z 150 never skips and it’s smooth and reliable. Okay, it’s certainly not as smooth as the Faber-Castell I mentioned earlier. But it is as smooth as the 50€ TWSBI 580 F-nib that has the same actual nib width.
In my line of work, it’s very important that the gun never jams the pen has no start-up problems and writes on every paper – and this is why I preferred the Poky over the TWSBI at work. Both pens perform great on good paper like Rhodia or Clairefontaine. Both pens write really, really well on thermal paper. But on cheap paper the Poky performs better. I’ve used J. Herbin Lierre Sauvage in both pens and the Poky was less prone to feathering and bleeding although it’s the wetter pen. Don’t ask me why, I don’t pretend to understand it, it’s just like it is.

The nib has some flex, not a lot, but it feels natural. The pen writes so wet that even Doc Brown would start drooling over it:
SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAHere’s another photo:SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA

Conclusion

The build quality and materials used are pretty good. It’s not built with as much precision as for example a Lamy Al-Star, but it can compete with many other pens in those price ranges and even more expensive pens.

The pen is a great writer and performs in my humble opinion better than for example a Lamy Safari/Vista/AL-Star, Platinum Plaisir, Pilot 74G and most of the pens in that price range including – and this is hard to admit because I’m a big fan of the brand – a Kaweco ICE or CLASSIC Sport.

The nib and feed is en par with the TWSBI 580. I know, that sounds hard to believe, even to me. But there‘ a reason I’ve used this pen instead of the TWSBI those last weeks.
Of course, the TWSBI’s build quality and serviceability can not be matched by the Poky.

If you like smaller pens, the design and fine nibs, you probably won’t find anything better than this pen in it’s price range. Which is easy, because the Z 150 only costs about 7€ with shipping. Even for 20€ or 30€ it’s not easy to find something as good, unless you turn to other Chinese pens. Of course it doesn’t have the iconic looks of a Safari and if you’re simply looking for a hooded nib a Parker 21 might interest you more. If you like those pens, then maybe the Poky isn’t for you. But if you’re simply looking for a nice FP with a good nib that’ll give you a great writing experience, the Z 150 is the right pen for you.

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In Germany, but still closer to any other place

I just got asked online, again, whether I lived in Berlin because I’m German. There are many countries in which a huge part of the population lives in the capital, but Germany isn’t one of them. I’m actually pretty amazed by how many capitals are closer to me than my own. Here’s the list:

  1. Bern (Switzerland) – 121km
  2. Vaduz (Liechtenstein) – 157km
  3. Luxembourg – 239km
  4. Brussels (Belgium) – 405km
  5. Paris (France) – 417km
  6. Monaco – 474km
  7. Amsterdam (Netherlands) – 531km
  8. Prague (Czech Republic) – 532km
  9. Ljubljana (Slovenia) – 549km
  10. San Marino – 574km
  11. Vienna (Austria) – 633km
  12. Berlin (Germany) – 640km

…which is just 50km closer than London or 25km closer than Zagreb (Croatia).

There are so many different countries I can easily go to. Not bad, huh?

Schwarzwald-LSD-Romantik

Momentan ist es ja in: Hirschgeweih, Kuckucksuhr, Bollenhut… – und zwar alles möglichst schrill. Prominentestes Beispiel in Freiburg ist wohl das coucou.

Hier lag noch so ’n psychodelisches Stück Stoff aus den 80ern rum, im Keller meiner Mutter gefunden. Mir war klar, das wird mein bescheidener, kleiner Beitrag zu dem Thema. Hier das Ergebnis:

Hirsch Applikation

Hirsch T-Shirt

Allow me to introduce you to my other self – the duct tape version

Almost finished, fast fertig.

Meine Schneiderbüste

Meine Schneiderbüste

Sassy 80s Style Minidress, partially shredded

So, Mädels und ähnliches, hier ist mein erstes Minikleid-Experiment, und ich bin recht zufrieden damit.
Und eine von euch kann dieses Kleid haben. Ich geb’s einfach so weg. Schreibt mir einfach, wenn ihr’s wollt!

Well, girls and the like, here’s my first Minidress-Experiment. I’m quite happy with it.
And one of you can get that dress. I’m really giving it away for free. Just mail me if you wanna have it!

Momentan ist das Ding noch in Größe XL, schätze ich. Wenn ich weiß, wer das Kleid bekommt, kann ich’s bis S oder eventuell sogar XS anpassen. Kleiner wird’s sogar noch besser aussehen.
At the moment it’s XL, I suppose. As soon as I know who’s gonna get the dress, I can fit it so that it will, uhm, fit. It’l look even better when smaller

Minidress Front

Minidress Front

Oh Mann, ich brauch ‘n Model. So kann man sich ja kaum vorstellen, wie das Ding am Körper aussieht.
Damn, I need a model. You can hardly imagine how it’s gonna look like when worn.

Der Rücken ist teilweise geshredded, sodass ihr mehr Haut zeigen könnt.
The back is partially shredde so you can show more skin.

Minidress Back

Minidress Back

Nochmal ‘n kleines Bild, fast wie das erste:
Another picture, pretty much like the first one:

Minidress Front #2

Minidress Front #2

Auf geht’s! Streitet euch darum! 😉
Alright, girls – fight for it!

My 1st shirt/Mein erstes Hemd

Nachts um halb 2 und ich hab’s endlich geschafft. Sehr stümperhaft, aber das sieht man auf dem Foto ja nicht so :]

Half one in the middle of the night. I finally made it. Very ragged though you can hardly tell by looking at the photo :]

Tunika Nr 1

Tunika Nr 1

Terminator 4

I should probably put this into the Android category, right? 😉

Anyway, not much to say about the movie, might as well do it in English:

It’s an action movie. They’re trying to pick up the plot from the earlier Terminator movies and make it something more modern, darker, deeper maybe, but they don’t really succeed. Just sit back and enjoy the action.

T4 is to T1, T2 and T3 what Die Hard 4.0 is to DH1, Dh2 and DH3. Modern, features more computer stuff, but those elements are exchangeable and not so important after all. However, if you liked DH4 you might like T4.

The Product Placement is just perfect and made me laugh several times. From the Micro Cruzer USB stick (got one of those) to the shiny Vaio ultraportables and notebooks that look like they really, really don’t belong into that dark world. Fun!

Did I mention there’s a lot of action?

If you’re already a Terminator fan, you should probably watch T4, too. If not, don’t! Start with T1 instead.
I’ll give this okay-ish movie 5 or 6 stars at imdb.com.