Kaweco Student Pen Review

#Kaweco student fountain pen arrived from @jetpens with EF nib and some turquoise cartridges (recommended by @dovbee)

I made a decision in the great debate between the Kaweco Student and the Kaweco Allrounder and I chose the Student model. The Student is $50 cheaper than the Allrounder and I wasn’t sure if I was going to like a full-sized Kaweco. My hands are very small and the lightweight quality and size of the Kaweco Classic/Sport/Ice designs are comfortable and easy to use. But I really wanted to try a ful-sized fountain pen from Kaweco in order to accommodate a converter and boy, am I ever glad I did.

The Kaweco Student comes in a lovely tin box with a great vintage logo on the box (much more posh than the cardboard boxes the Sport/Classic/Ice pens come in). The first thing I noticed is that its much weightier the Student is compared to the less expensive Kawecos. The grip area is a heavy chrome material — I think its actually metal, not just chromed plastic but I don’t want to scratch my pen to verify it.

The pen has chrome silver accents on the cap and a silver chrome clip bulit-in. On the clip, the classic Kaweco logo is engraved into it. I love the look.

The big deal, of course is that this is a Kaweco model that can accomodate a standard small converter. This makes this a more convenient method for expanding your ink options. Alternately, you can also fit two cartridges into the body so you have a back-up handy.

Pen comparison
From top to bottom: Kaweco Sport Guilloch 1930, Esterbrook J, Kaweco Student

I noticed that the Kaweco Student, for a full-sized pen, is not too large. Its just a little bit bigger than my vintage Esterbrook. Its not like upgrading to a BIG man-hands fountain pen but it does feel like a bigger, classic PEN.

Pen comparison

Compared to other pens in the same price range, the Student is closest in size to the Pilot Prera though its a bit heavier than the Prera.

Weight comparison:

  • Kaweco Sport: 15gms
  • Pilot Prera: 17gms
  • Kaweco Student: 27gms
  • Lamy Studio: 27gms
  • TWSBI Diamond 540: 28gms

Pricewise, these pens are fairly competitive as well. Obviously, the Kaweco Sport is the least expensive (depending on the model between $20-$25) and the Lamy Studio is the most expensive (again, depending on the website one can be had for $75-$100). The Pilot Prera, the TWSBI and the Kaweco Student are all about $60. Each offers different features and options that account for their price but I felt they were good for size, weight  and price comparison.

Kaweco Nib Comparison
Nib comparison between the Student and the standard gold Sport nibs. Both are EF.

Unlike the cheaper Kaweco models, the Student ships with a silver nib rather than the gold tone. I was worried it wouldn’t be as smooth on paper but it writes just as smoothly and has the exact same embellishments on the nib.

Kaweco Student review
Close-up of writing

I loaded my Kaweco Student with a Kaweco Turquoise ink cartridge and have been writing with it for about a week or so. The look and feel of it are really nice so I’ve been keeping it on my desk at work as my go-to pen, trying to get some real world miles on it.

So far, it writes beautifully and I have fewer (if any) needs to “prime” the pen before using it. Priming is a term used to describe the need to run a few scratches or scribbles on paper in order to get the ink to flow. This is something that I have to do occasionally with the less expensive Kawecos but the Student doesn’t seem to need to be primed as regularly, if at all.

Kaweco Student Pen Test
Kaweco Student writing sample

The Student model can be used with the cap posted on the end of the pen or unposted since it is long enough to be held comfortably in the hand. I find it more comfortable to use unposted as it is much weightier with the cap posted but if you prefer a heavier pen, the cap stays in place nicely, no wobbling.

I purchased the pen with the EF nib which is, for me, the sweet spot for Kaweco though I don’t notice a huge difference between the F and EF nibs. Compared to the Prera F nib though, the Kaweco EF is broader. Other websites have discussed in detail the difference between Japanese and European nib sizes so I won’t dwell on this but I did want to mention it if you are familiar with one and not the other.

Handwriting close-up
Another handwriting close-up, ink is Kaweco Turquoise cartridge

Overall, the Student is a good upgrade to the compact Sport/Classic/Ice/Liliput models. While I love how compact the smaller model Kawecos are and the lower price for such great quality, the larger Student model is a beautiful looking pen that looks and feels more luxurious. Am I saying that the Student should be your next purchase? Maybe. If you’re looking for a reasonably-priced, nice-quality, classic-almost-vintage-looking, full-sized fountain pen, then yes.

Hopefully, I’ve covered everything but if you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section.

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12 comments / Add your comment below

  1. Nice review. Got myself this pen in the lovely blue demonstrator version. It’s beyond pretty but I’m a bit annoyed with the F nib because I get a lot of skipping. And I tried fitting a Pelikan standard converter but it got stuck in the barrel and I only could pry it loose with pliers and a crochet hook 🙁 Hoping an M nib will give me a nicer writing experience and will probably get the matching converter from Kaweco. It is such a pretty pen it would be a shame not to be able to use it.

  2. I really LOVE this Kaweco Student. I personally have to of them, one with black body, the other one with red body. I normally writte using both blue and red colors, so obviously I needed two pens. Its amazing that for such a low Price how one can enjoy the pleasure of writting. I definetely woudl recommend it.

  3. I am the President of a small corporation and recently received a Kaweco Student as a gift from my sister.

    I had been using a 1951 Esterbrook recently, which I have owned for 20+ years and my sister regularly says I should keep my classic at home. I love my old esterbrook j series and it still writes excellently.

    Having spent some time with this new pen, I will continue to carry it on a daily basis. This pen is very similar in feel to my old esterbrook, and only slightly larger. The width deviation between vertical and horizontal marks is nearly incomprehensible with the EF nib.

    In short, I’m sold! and plan to carry this pen for years to come. Great job on a wonderfully made, daily pen.

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