Fountain Pen Review: Opus 88 Picnic in Green (Fine Nib)

The Opus88 Picnic ($99) is a sight to behold. The translucent acrylic ends practically glow. I never thought I’d become someone who went for demonstrator pens but times change.  I chose the green model which is a lovely shade of lime.

I don’t know if I mixed up the packaging of the Koloro with the Picnic or if the paper included was the same. The box is the same with magnetic closure, syringe and foam. The syringe is a different color though.

The Picnic, like the Koloro, is an eyedropper filler using the Japanese filling mechanism. With the Koloro, I didn’t quite understand the filling mechanism but thanks to a chat with David of Figboot on Pens in Atlanta. He goes into detail about it in his video review of the Koloro. The twist filler on the back of the pen releases ink from the ink reservoir into the feed. From time to time,  you’ll need to release a bit more ink into the feed by untwisting the end cap every now and then and then retightening it. Its a very different way of using a pen but it provides a huge quantity of ink without having it drizzling out of the feed like other eyedropper pens.

I could not resist filling the Picnic with a color coordinating ink. I chose Robert Oster Lemon Grass ($17 for 50ml bottle) which is a very good match.

The Picnic is an all-acrylic pen, so despite being a bit longer than the Koloro, its actually a little bit lighter, even filled with ink.

Weight (filled with ink):

  • 22gms capped
  • 14 gms uncapped


  • 145mm capped
  • 125mm uncapped
  • 165mm posted

The nib is a JoWo fine nib. I loved the nib on the Koloro so much, I got the same nib on the Picnic. The tines were slightly misaligned but some finger adjusting loosened them up a little. The nib is still not as wet or smooth as the Koloro but its working a lot better. I might have someone look at it in St. Louis to see if I can get it a little more tuned up. Overall though, its writing better than when I originally removed it from the box.

The dryness of the nib is enhanced a bit by the lightness and translucency of the Lemon Grass ink color so it was probably a lot more noticeable than it would of been if I’d been using a darker, more opaque color.

On Rhodia paper, the Picnic can get lovely fine line a well as to show off a little bounce.

I prefer how the Opus88 Picnic performs on the Hippo Noto paper particularly with the Lemon Grass ink. The slight softness of the paper lets the ink shine a bit more. There’s a lot more shading though I did rinse the nib at one point so the color got a little lighter. The ink has been in the pen for awhile so there was a bit of sediment on the nib. There is a LOT of ink in the reservoir so you really need to be committed to the color and ready to use it regularly.

I still prefer writing with the Koloro over the Picnic only because of the nib performance. Overall, this is a specific issue with the pen I have. Whether this is indicative of the quality control from Opus 88, I doubt as I have heard that other people have been happy with their pens but it is something to consider especially with the finer nib.

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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4 comments / Add your comment below

  1. Gold spot has a great price on the Picnic version right now. Trouble is I like 3 of the colors when they are shown together (brown, blue, and the green Ana reviewed).

    I read on the Goulet site that the Picnic will take an Edison #5 nib. I think I have one of those in a 1.1mm italic which is a wonderful crisp italic. I was originally thinking about the brown version, but I just don’t know which to get.

  2. I’ve got two of the Picnics… Blue & Green. After about a week, Blue one was a little temperamental with some standard Pilot BlueBlack ink. Dumped the ink back into the bottle & flushed the nib for a while. Warm water & diluted dawn dishsoap. Let it dry overnight… BAM! Great flow writer.

  3. Totally agree with your review, Ana. I am very disappointed. It feels cheap and the nib is dry (bought a F). It reminds me of a FPR pens I bought years ago except they were 12$ (vs 100$). Now I know we have the same expectation about pens.

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