Thursday, October 14, 2010

Montblanc Generation

Find myself a little surprised, but why that is doesn't really make a lot of sense. What’s so surprising about a Montblanc fountain pen that writes like a dream? Obviously, I misread the simplicity of the Montblanc Generation design, thinking it couldn’t be anything like the higher end models, the Meisterstück, the Doué and the Famous Name series.

The Generation is a hard pen to find information on. I clicked through a long list of websites trying to find something more specific than what I can see for myself by looking at the fountain pen, but came up dry in the end. I was even unable to learn what year the design was introduced, and when it was discontinued, if that is the case.

First look, first impression—

Unlike some of the Montblanc models, especially those in the Famous Name series, the Generation has clean lines and uncommon sleekness, appearing smaller than other fountain pens by the same maker. Cap and barrel are smooth and uncluttered, with nothing except simple gold cap bands to interrupt the flow of burgundy precious resin from top to bottom. There is a thin band and a thicker one at the bottom of the cap, but the double band somehow simplifies the look even more. The wider of the two bands is engraved with MONTBLANC-GENERATION. The pocket clip too, seems slimmer, simpler than most. As you would expect, the top of the cap has the black disc and trademark white star inside a gold band. The very top of the barrel has a thin gold ring, adding the final touch of trim.

Cap on, the Generation measures 5.5 inches, and posted is only slightly longer at 5.75 inches. Removing the cap reveals another two thin gold bands separated by a narrow black band. The thinner of the two gold bands has four raised ridges at the cardinal points. These tiny ridges, similar to the design of the Lamy 2000, hold the cap on. The 14k gold nib has a sculpted look that is different but extremely handsome. In what I think is a nice touch, the bottom of the barrel where it joins the nib is cut away at a forty-five degree angle.

The pen is light and comfortable in the hand, very probably a perfect balance for those with smaller hands. My hand is not small, but the Generation isn’t at all lost in my grip. I could write with it comfortably for hours.

It comes in black or burgundy, and though I saw photos of models in blue and gold, I think those may be few in number. Even the burgundy model I have is difficult to find on Internet pen sites. The nib is offered in either fine or medium, and for those who prefer, the Generation is also available (and more common) in either ballpoint or rollerball. The fountain pen uses either cartridge or converter.


You should not make the mistake I did in thinking that this lower priced Montblanc pen does not come up to the level of the more expensive models. The feeling is now, I may have a hard time letting go of this Generation. It has a smoooooth flowing medium nib, with never a hint of skip. The width of the line is consistent with what is standard for medium nibs, and dead on target with my own preferences. There are two or three pens and nibs in front of me here that I call favorites and this Montblanc Generation jumps right into line with those. A solid pleasure to write with this pen, and just by chance I loaded the converter with an ink that makes both nib and paper sing—Caran d’Ache Sunset.

Think I just may be writing with this pen and this ink for the next stretch of days. It’s an impressive fountain pen.


  1. Absolutely love that quote in your handwriting.... I read "The Education of a Wandering Man" years ago and it's still one of the best bios I've ever read.

    Apropos, I found a bargain today... The Lost Years of Isherwood's Diaries (reconstructed)... 1945-1951 (The Lost Years), edited, of course by Ms. Bucknell... super bargain at $6.95 and mint condition, too.

    Hope you are well, Will.

  2. I just bought a Generation, a new-old-stock one from Fountain Pen Hospital. Like you, I'm very impressed with it. It writes beautifully, and while I normally prefer a heavier pen, this one just does everything right (write?)!

  3. Did you ever find the release date? The best I can find is 2009-present in an article, but I cant find any in stock at the official site.


About Me

My photo
Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America