I had the Faber-Castell LOOM fountain pen on my radar for along time before hitting the “Buy Now” button. I can’t explain why as I’ve read and seen numerous favorable reviews, and have had nothing but great experiences with Faber-Castell nibs. The price— a modest $40-ish— wasn’t the hurdle, either. Whatever the reason, I found myself picking other pens to purchase while the LOOM languished on my Someday/Maybe list.
In October 2014, Fountain Pen Hospital ran a “flash sale,” and as I casually browsed the offerings, I noticed this Lime Green LOOM for a slightly reduced price. I like lime green almost as much as I like orange (when I’m in the mood for something bright), so why back-burner this pen yet again?
I inked the pen as soon as it arrived and found that any niggly hesitation I’d had was not at all warranted. The oversized cap sort of put me off initially, as it looks as though it’ll add an unwieldy amount of weight to the back of the pen when posted, but I haven’t found that to be the case. The pen is light and on the short side (4.7″) when unposted, and though perfectly usable, I prefer the added weight and length posting the cap adds (posted length is 5.9″). The cap snaps on with a convincing click, and posts deeply and securely. Even though the cap makes the pen look a little bit like a bobble-head, it’s actually not an issue.
This pen’s body features the highly polished “Piano” finish, so, of course, it’s a fingerprint magnet. I give the pen a quick wipe after a writing session and all is well. If fingerprints give you a nervous twitch, you’d be better off choosing a LOOM with the “Metallic” (Matte) finish.
The matte metal section features a series of raised ridges that help with grip, though I have to admit that I find the section to be a little slippery nonetheless. Because of the curved shape, and the fact that there isn’t any kind “stop” at the end of the section, my fingers tend to drift towards the nib, despite the added ridges. Since I’m a “low-gripper,” this doesn’t really bother me, but it’s worth noting.
The clip is spring-loaded and substantial, the branding is subtle, and the lime green color of the cap (other colors are available) pops in a wonderfully citrusy kind of way. But what I REALLY love is the nib. The fine nib on this pen (the only size available during the FPH sale) is super smooth— just like all of my other Faber-Castell pens. Because I’ve read so many great reviews about Faber-Castell nibs, even on the economical models, I have to assume that this is a company that has their nib QC down to a science. Pay a little or pay a lot— you still get a consistently great nib. I’ve had zero start-up issues, writing is silky smooth, and there’s never been a skip or a hesitation.
Available from a variety of vendors (including Faber-Castell), in a number of colors, and in both matte and gloss finishes, the Faber-Castell LOOM is a pen that delivers great performance at a very reasonable price. Fountain pens not your thing? The LOOM is also available in rollerball and ballpoint formats.
After spending the past few months with this pen, I’m glad I finally moved the LOOM off of my Someday/Maybe list and onto the list of pens I own. It’s one that I keep consistently inked, usually with Sailor Yama Dori, and use it often for letter writing, journaling, and note-taking. Because— wow— that nib!
In a nutshell:
+ Super smooth Faber-Castell steel nib
+ Springy, sturdy clip
+ Snap cap, posts securely and deeply
+ Matte grip section, mirror finish body and clip
+ Subtle branding (jousting!) on cap, cap end, and nib
+ Not too heavy, not too light (25g body, 7g cap)
– Mirror finish is a finger-print magnet
– Some may find the grip a little slippery
– Converter NOT included