Few pens jump more quickly to mind when I think of a "daily workhorse" than the Lamy 2000. Its no-nonsense construction and straightforward, distraction-free design allows you to forget the pen and just get stuff done. Though I prefer the fountain pen, Lamy manufactures a full range of writing instruments in the "2000 line," which at the moment includes a rollerball, a ballpoint, a mechanical pencil, and a "4 Color" multipen. I won't rehash the storied history of this pen, since I've previously reviewed it. This post is more of a personal reflection on why I find this particular pen so pleasant to work with on a daily basis, and why it's remained a key part of my pen case for nearly ten years. (I've also linked to my previous reviews of the various Lamy 2000 models at the bottom of the page.)
So why is the Lamy 2000 such a great workhorse?
In short, because it ticks all of the boxes: understated design, light weight and good balance, the ability to post, a good nib that's not too wet, and a large ink capacity. As you'll see, I consider this pen to have a lot of "pros", with very few "cons". (Though as with all pen reviewing, that's a matter of personal opinion.)
- The pen disappears in the hand. Especially the Makrolon version, which is extremely light, and the threadless section and barrel make it more or less foolproof to write with this pen for extended sessions, whether it be journaling, drafting documents, or notetaking. The look of the pen won't distract you from the task at hand.
- The pen disappears in meetings. The Lamy 2000 and the Pilot Vanishing Point are two go-to fountain pens for those meetings where I don't want to be the focus of attention. Most people will assume that a hooded nib fountain pen is a rollerball or a ballpoint.
- The pen posts well and is practical to use on the go. I've been pretty vocal about how I prefer pens that post, mainly because I often have to work in non-desk situations where I don't have a place to set the cap. The Lamy 2000's cap posts securely and deeply, and the pen also has good ink capacity, especially if you use the extra-fine or fine nib option. Practically speaking, I've found very little difference between Lamy fine and extra fine nibs. On the 2000, the medium nib runs fairly broad, and the broad nib tends to be a stubbish firehose, so if you're purchasing this pen to use on cheaper paper, go finer.
- The pen is widely available (and easily replaced). Yes, I've lost a Lamy 2000, or, rather, I've had one stolen out of a hotel room. It stung my wallet a bit, but not as bad as, say, losing a Pelikan M800, MB 146, or even a Sailor Pro Gear. Because of how frequently I use the Lamy 2000 (near daily, or at least weekly), and given the context in which I use the pen (meetings, conferences, seminars, hotels, etc.) I've just accepted that it's likely I'll lose at least one or two of them over the years. For that reason, I typically keep more than one in my stockpile, and will pick them up if I see them on sale.
I'm probably biased in terms of how much I love this pen, but I don't see many cons to the Lamy 2000 if what you're looking for is a true "workhorse" that you're going to use for daily writing over a long period of time. Some people find the grip on the Lamy 2000 slippery, and others dislike the nib. Though Lamy's quality control on the nibs has been spotty over the years, I've never had a serious issue, and reports of major problems have been less frequent recently. That said, one of the reasons why I recommend people price-shop the Lamy 2000 is to leave yourself room in the budget to get the nib tuned if necessary. Honestly, if you plan to use any pen as a daily writing tool, It's worth the relatively small investment to get the nib tuned to your particular writing style, preferably at a pen show where the nib technician can watch you write and adjust the nib in person.
Where To Buy
I've always consistently recommended that people price-shop the Lamy 2000, and found it easiest to purchase mine through Amazon, with good results. One odd thing I've noticed about the Lamy 2000 is that they tend to hold their value relatively well for how common they are. You don't see them priced at that much of a discount at pen shows or in the aftermarket.
The "Workhorse Pens" series isn't intended to offer a full review of the various pens I write about. Rather, it's intended to showcase a select number of pens that I use regularly, mainly in my day job as an attorney, and discuss why these pens meet my everyday needs. I previously wrote about the Montblanc 146 for this series.
If you're interested in reading further on the Lamy 2000, please check out my prior review of the fountain pen, as well as my write-ups of the Lamy 2000 ballpoint and the 4-Color Ballpoint multipen. I still need to add a rollerball and a mechanical pencil to my collection!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.