Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Platinum PTL-5000A 14k Fountain Pen: Mining for Gold

When I first heard about this pen, I was almost in disbelief because gold nib pens typically run $140+. Could there really be a 14k pen for under $80? Yup, and here it is, the Platinum PTL-5000A.

Now don't go thinking that this pen is just a flashy name (some sarcasm there). Okay, the name is quite... robotic? But this is actually a pretty sweet little pen. I mean that literally, too; the pen is thin, very light, and the nib itself is rather small. However, it's a genuine 14k nib that actually writes fairly soft, and I'm quite impressed. 

The design of the pen is very similar to the Platinum Maki-e pens, including the Kanazawa Leaf and Modern Maki-e (that we used to carry but have recently discontinued). It's slightly smaller overall, and incredibly light at only 13g. For a large-handed writer like me, the pen is thinner and lighter than I would normally want, but this is something that I think a lot of you will find appealing about this pen. 

The nib is 14k and writes quite well. The EF is VERY fine, just like you'd expect with a Japanese pen, and that's what I use in the video. It's also available in fine and medium (though the medium we might not have until February). The fine is smoother than the EF, as I'd expect. 

The flow is consistent and the feel of the nib is smooth but with a bit of feedback. Platinum tends to grind their nibs so you feel some drag on the page; that's intentional and the reason a lot of folks like Platinum because you really get a sense of control with the nib. There's even a bit of line variation if you intentionally flex the nib out. Though watch out, it's not a 'flex nib' per say, so go easy with this. 

The pen is black with gold trim (and oddly a silver trim ring at the nib), I believe there's a burgundy version out there as well, but I don't know that it's regularly available in the US yet. It comes with a Platinum cartridge and takes a proprietary Platinum converter (included) for bottled ink. 

All-in-all, it's a really solid little pen. It's not new, though it's "new to us" here at GouletPens.com. I can't believe I haven't heard more about this pen, especially at this price point. Here it is though, we got it in and I wanted to share my experience with you. You can learn more details and pick one up for yourself for $79.20.

What do you think?

Write On,
Brian Goulet


  1. PTL-5000A is catalogue number. In Japan, it called `14K Standard'. PTL-5000 has gold ring at nib. but it discontinued.

  2. I think you sold me on this pen 2 minutes into the video, Brian. :) I tend to prefer Japanese extra fine nibs because I want something that works well on both my own notebooks, and our terrible HP copy paper at work. (I gotta say, this looks like an ideal entry-to-gold pen for folks who are used to their Metropolitans and Lamy Al-Stars.) Anyway, I'll be anxiously checking my mailbox for the next couple of days!

  3. I note here that you no longer carry the Kanazawa Leaf and Modern Maki-e pens. Question: Do you still have any in stock? Interested.

  4. Looks like a great pen. My Platinum pens with steel nibs have been so impressive and write so great this gold nib pen will be a winner. Good classic styling, very well designed, price is great. I have Platinum EF and F nibs on my 4 Platinum pens and love every one of them as fantastic writers. I feel that this is a pen that most anyone will love. Looking at the photos of the pen, I am sure that the metal threaded end of the grip section can be unscrewed from the grip so the nib, feed, and rubber seal can be removed, like on the Balance and Cool pens. Great for cleaning when changing inks. You'll let us know about that! Thanks Brian.

  5. I'd argue, vehemently even, that it's politicians and unfettered capitalists (not to be confused with ethical businesses), moreso than scientists, who need to recognize their limitations and practice some humility. However, this is a friendly blog and not the place for such a discussion.

    Mr. Sagan was a fine human being, a fantastic, engaged educator and is greatly missed. I'm thrilled that Drew chose him as a subject for his awesome sketch.

  6. Hi, Jules:

    No argument from me regarding politicians and unfettered capitalists. Why stop at politicians and unfettered capitalists? Don't we all need more humility in the way we interact with others? I know I do. I guess what I'm trying to say is that whether we're talking about scientists, politicians, capitalists, macro-evolutionists, creationists, ad infinitum, we all are guilty at times of pride, which is probably in the "Top 10" of sins, if not #1.

    While there is plenty of arrogance to go around within probably every profession you'd care to name, I suggest that the scientists who protest so strongly against other scientists who actually believe in a Creator-God, calling them names and hurling epithets at them, are guilty of intellectual arrogance.

    On the other hand, corrupt politicians and unfettered capitalists are equally guilty of the arrogance of venality and megalomania, which are characterized by contempt toward the people they are, ostensibly, to serve.

    The same can be said about the adherents of religion who in the name of God lead with anger, hatred, and intolerance but neglect love, forgiveness, kindness, gentleness, empathy, and grace. Let's face it, no one is exempt from besetting sins. That's why the ground is perfectly level at the foot of the Cross. That's why we're all in need of what only God can supply, not just once and for all at the cross of Jesus, but throughout life.

  7. Mike, just go to the Goulet store web site and look at the Platinum pens. They are there.


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