I'll be straight with you up front: I am an unabashed Lamy 2000 fan and consider it to be one of the greatest pens ever designed. I have two of the black Makrolon models: one in an extra-fine nib, and one with a custom .6mm stub. You could say it was inevitable that I'd eventually get around to adding the Stainless Steel model to my collection. While I wouldn't grant this pen the same "legendary" status as its cousin, it's close, and this pen has earned a spot in my regular rotation.
First Impressions / Design
Packaging. The packaging on this pen is slightly nicer than the packaging on the original Lamy 2000, but it's still just a cardboard box. A well-crafted and somewhat eye-catching cardboard box, but still. None of this matters to me because packaging isn't something I take great interest in unless I can repurpose it as a pen or pencil chest, like some of the more ornate wooden boxes that Delta sells with its more expensive limited edition pens. One thing I do like, however, is that Lamy has included a polishing cloth. It's a nice touch.
Weight. The first thing that will strike you about this pen is that it is heavy. Everyone who reviews it comments on the weight, and how it's probably twice as heavy as the standard Lamy 2000 (maybe more). The weight might be a deal-breaker for many people, especially if you don't like to use a pen unposted.
Personally, the weight doesn't bother me. I find this pen well balanced for how heavy it is, and I've written with it both posted and unposted for significant periods of time. Sure, the first extended writing session will make your hand a bit tired, but you will get used to it after a couple outings. (If you have serious RSI issues, you probably won't, but then again, you're probably not scoping out the market for heavy metal pens anyway.) On the whole, I prefer to use the pen unposted.
Design. The Lamy 2000 Stainless Steel is, for all intents and purposes, the same pen as the standard Lamy 2000. Both are piston-fillers, and can only be filled from an ink bottle. The key differences are the material (the entire pen is made from brushed stainless steel, whereas the original only has a stainless steel section); the clip, which is polished and not matte; and the lack of an ink window. The only change here that bothers me somewhat is the lack of an ink window on the Stainless Steel version, though I'm not sure how they could've incorporated it into the design. (It's not as though the Lamy 2000 ink window is incredibly useful anyway: it's opaque and narrow, but when you can see some daylight in there you at least know that you have less than a day's worth of ink left and should refill.) I haven't figured out how to tell when the Stainless Steel model is almost empty--I'll probably have to go by the weight of the pen--but to be safe, if I'm carrying that pen and need to be sure that I have enough ink to get through a long day of writing, I generally refill before I leave the house.
Curiously, I don't find this pen slippery, which was a concern of mine. Metal pens often pose grip issues, but the brushed stainless steel texture on this pen creates a nice surface that feels good in the hand. Note: the original Lamy 2000 has a brushed stainless steel section, so if you have grip issues with that pen, this one isn't going to work for you either. (Actually, it will probably be worse.)
I opted for a medium nib. My two other Lamy 2000s sport an extra fine and a .6mm custom stub. The latter began life as a medium but later had to be retipped after some failed nibwork. I missed Lamy's big, wet 14K medium nib on the 2000, and I'm glad to have it back in the arsenal once again. For those of you who haven't yet experienced this pen, the Lamy 2000 nibs are springy, and for the most part great writers out of the box. (I've heard reports of quality control issues, but have never experienced any myself.) As I've said before on this blog, Lamy nibs tend to run wide, so this medium is more of a "medium-broad", probably close to the width of a TWSBI broad nib.
I absolutely love this pen, but will be the first to admit that it isn't for everyone. The weight will turn a lot of people off, and many people just don't like metal pens, period. It's also expensive, and you have to be a true Lamy fan to invest $300 when--let's face it--you might already own the same pen in the (much) cheaper Makrolon version. But if you're like me, and love your Lamy 2000s, you won't care.
Many thanks to PenChalet for providing me with this pen for review purposes. If the Lamy 2000 Stainless Steel Model interests you, check out Pen Chalet. Ron's prices are competitive, and you generally can find a coupon or discount code floating around out there, especially if you are a Pen Addict Podcast listener.
If you're interested in the black Makrolon version of the Lamy 2000, you can check out my review of that pen here. It also made my list of "Tier One" pens and best pens for your first purchase over $100.
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