Founded in 1838, Pelikan are one of the oldest fountain pen producers in the game. The German fountain pen brand have carved out a reputation for their eye-catching and aesthetically pleasing designs. They first introduced the M205 to the world in 2005. The M205 intends to be an elite entry level pen, the M205 is almost like a gateway to the world of ultra-premium fountain pens.
Body Material: Resin
Length (capped): 12.5cm
Length (uncapped nib-end): 12.1cm
Length (posted): 14.8cm
Nib material: Steel
Weight: 12 g
Weight (cap): 4 g
Filling System: Piston
Pelikan have released many variants of the M205 including different colours, designs and annual limited edition releases. Their unique demonstrator designs are what sets them apart from the majority of fountain pens at this price range. The demonstrator design allows the user to see through the pen and gain insight into just how much ink is left inside the barrel. The transparency will depend on which colour/design you get, the darker tints such as Amethyst are much less visible than the very transparent sky blue designs.
(Photo taken by Ennui, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)
Pelikan have certainly paid attention to every aspect of this pen to make it as stylish as possible. The plastic, demonstrator body is contrasted by chrome accents to create a more classy and fancy impression. The cap features an embossed black and white Pelikan logo to create some fashionable branding. Similarly, the nib features an engravement stating the nib size and Pelikan's logo.
Subtle additions to the M205 go a long way in making this pen as pretty as it is. For example, Pelikan have shaped the finial and the clip to look like a small Pelikan with its eyes and beak; a testament to their great craftsmanship and creativity. Overall, the aesthetic of the M205 makes for a unique yet timeless design.
Lastly, Pelikan have done an exceptional job at making such appealing packaging. The M205 comes in a fancy white box featuring Pelikan's iconic logo whilst the actual pen lies on a white leather bed. Overall, it makes for a great unboxing experience.
Despite being predominantly plastic-made and lightweight, the M205 feels far from flimsy. The barrel feel sturdy and robust, given our best efforts we couldn't make a bend in it. Furthermore, the body holds up well in daily life; it doesn't pick up many scratches or scuffs and does well to not make any fingerprints prominent.
As for the cap, it sports a screw on design. It screws to sit very deeply along the pen making it ultra tight; therefore you aren't going to have to worry about the nib drying out due to minimal air being able to reach it. Similarly, the clip is well functional, it does a remarkable job at staying clipped to even the most awkward of materials. It's also securely attached to the body, you won't have to worry about it falling off without any extreme action. Lastly, Pelikan have always done an exceptional job with creating Piston's that are not only smooth but also reliable; the M205's piston is no different.
Unlike most eye-catching and hefty fountain pens at this price range, the M205 is surprisingly very light. And not only is it so light, it's extremely short too. Due to how light it is, writing for extended periods of time becomes a joy because of the lack of heft. Furthermore, Pelikan have taken into account how short the pen is as they have made it as comfortable as possible to write with the pen posted. When posted, the M205 is still well-balanced and feels great in the hand. This is sure to be a hit for those with bigger hands.
As for the grip section, it's on the smaller and narrower side of most fountain pens. If you have very large hands, you may want to give this a miss or at least get a feel for it before purchasing. On the flip side, the grip section balances being smooth with having just the right amount of texture to prevent it being slippery. Furthermore, the grip section tapers outwards to guide your fingers into position.
Surprisingly for a pen at this price range, the M205 sports a stainless steel nib rather than a gold one. However, before you put your nose up at it, the writing performance from the M205 is by far one of the best you can get at this price range.
The nib is buttery-smooth with only the tiniest amount of feedback and it's on the juicer side producing lines that are clean and smooth. The flow from the M205 is top-notch from day one, you'll hard pressed to encounter any hard-starting or skipping. And despite it being made of steel, the nib even has a nice spring to it.
Lastly, if you're not happy with the standard "fine" nib that the M205 comes shipped with, you'll be glad to know that the nibs are interchangeable. There are various nibs that you can change it with including some of Pilot's incredibly premium nibs.
The M205 uses a piston filling system, it's no surprise considering Pelikan make some of the best piston fillers around. The ink chamber in the M205 is remarkably big, even the heaviest users will get alot of use out of this pen before needing to refill it. Furthermore, due to it possessing a demonstrator design, you're not going to get caught out with no ink as you can see exactly how much ink is left in the barrel.
As for the cleaning process, it couldn't be more straightforward. The whole pen is easy to dissemble and can be done in a matter of seconds; the nib and feed also screw off separately, to further ease the process. It can also be assembled within a matter of seconds due to the simplistic design of the pen.
Value for Money & Conclusion
As previously mentioned, Pelikan's M205 represents a great gateway to the more luxurious fountain pens on the market. It gives you a peak of what great writing performances should feel like. Currently priced between £90 and £120, it represents great value for those who are not sure whether to invest in the most premium of pens. Instead they can get a glimpse of what premium fountain pens are all about at a lesser price.