When I was still a wide-eyed newbie to fountain pens, I had researched which ones would be great for beginners. Among the common recommendations was the Pilot Prera. Initially, I was hesitant to take that leap since I was still testing the waters, and didn’t want to commit to a 50+ USD pen. After a few months, however, someone from my local pen community decided to let go of her preloved pen, so I snapped it up. It was the magic of serendipity at work.
Now, this pen story has come full circle. EndlessPens has sent me a new Prera to road-test and rediscover the reasons why this pen still comes highly recommended.
First, let’s look at the build. The Pilot Prera is essentially a lightweight pocket pen ideal for everyday-carry. Constructed from sturdy, clear acrylic with chrome appointments, it carries the standards Pilot is known for. It has a secure snap-cap, with a vacuum seal that helps prevent the ink from drying out. There is that slight cushioning resistance before that satisfying click that sparks joy.
The grip is wide enough to be comfortable, with the transition from barrel to section nicely unobtrusive. It can be considered short except for small hands; but this is easily augmented by stable posting. The pen consequently feels more well-balanced for longer writing sessions. The clip looks deceptively simple yet feels sturdy. It works well with either a shirt pocket or a thicker leather journal cover. The pen comes with a proprietary Pilot Con-50 converter and cartridge, in a clamshell box with clear top cover and protective cardboard sleeve.
Second is the design. What I received for review was a demonstrator, which is a win for me. I love seeing the ink move through the inner architecture of the pen. The flat finial and end cap are of a different, transparent grey colour from the body, lending a subtle touch of colour-blocking. The Prera logo and Pilot brand name are printed cleanly with a simple pattern on the cap. The chrome bands and clip fit the minimalist aesthetics without being boring. The steel nib is uncomplicatedly embossed with “Pilot Super Quality Japan <F>, which actually speaks for itself. I just wished the inner cap was more translucent to show off the nib.
Third, and truly vital, is performance. The pen works immediately out of the box , with that finer line thickness that Japanese pens are generally known for. The nib writes smoothly, with just the right hint of feedback that I prefer. It lays down an adequately wet line using Diamine Graphite ink, in spite of its nib width. For me, writing and sketching fine lines with this pen was an enjoyable experience.
The fourth consideration is the price. My initial impression when I was just starting my journey was that this pen was beyond me as a novice. Now that I’ve had more experience with different pens, and have established certain preferences, I can appreciate the Prera in a different light. It may not be a good introductory pen for everyone. However, its quality and attributes help justify the cost. It is a worthwhile addition to your collection of well-made pens, and I personally recommend it.
Written by Lekz Umali
Check out her art on Instagram!