Pen Review: Platinum PTL 5000A Balance Fountain Pen

Review by Jessica Coles

The Platinum 5000-A Balance caught my eye a couple weeks ago when I noticed it had a gold nib.  That’s not actually a remarkable thing in itself; Platinum makes many excellent gold nibbed pens.

However, I was looking at pens sorted by price.  There was no way I had scrolled down far enough to get to the gold nib prices – I hadn’t even made it to the Monteverde Prima or Lamy Studio yet (both have steel nibs).  I double checked.  A gold nibbed pen (from a well-founded and respected company) that cost on $64? There was no way! So of course, I had to try it.  As soon as humanly possible.

Luckily, Pen Chalet had the 5000-A in stock.  When it arrived, the packaging beautiful and understated.

Still not a pen that I would suspect contained a gold nib.  Had this been a mislabeled pen?

Nope!

A 14kt gold nib in a pen that cost $64 (at the time of this writing!).  It was with trepidation that I began to test the pen with a writing sample.

The pen performed beautifully.  Like other Platinum nibs, there is a moderate amount of feedback.  You can feel the page under your nib.  I personally enjoy this feeling, but those who prefer a smoother feel could easily adjust this.  The nib is not listed as flexible or soft, but as a 14kt nib has a bit of responsiveness to the pressure variations that occur during a writing session.  Make sure you do not think I’m saying this is a flexible or even a soft nib!  It is not!  DO NOT TRY TO FLEX THIS NIB.  But as you can see above, the thickness does vary a bit throughout the writing.  (Please ignore any shaky hand parts you may see…)

Now for the size.  The 5000-A Balance surprised me in the size and weight category.  I was expecting a heavier pen. The pen weighs approximately 11.5 grams.  Lighter than anything we have on our chart, including the ubiquitous Lamy Safari.  The body of the Platinum is plastic while the gold clip and accents are metal.

pen weight comparison chart

With the snap-cap removed, (you read that correctly.  The cap snaps. And it is a satisfying snap as well.) you can see the nib is close in size to that of the Lamy. What you don’t see in this photo (because I inked up the pen as soon as it came out of the box) is that it has a clear feed! Beautiful, especially with brightly colored ink.

The only other thing I can say about this pen is this: go get it right now.  Quickly.  Before they realize that they have underpriced an amazing pen.


DISCLAIMER: The items included in this review were provided free of charge by Pen Chalet for the purpose of review. Please see the About page for more details.

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