Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Platinum #3776 Century fountain pen

Japanese high-quality fountain pens have grown immensely popular over the last few years, which isn't very strange if you consider the great quality of brands like Sailor, pilot, Nakaya,... Unfortunately, most of them are also quite expensive. The Platinum #3776 Century is different though, it's in a much more acceptable price range. But can it still keep up with the more expensive pens?

The #3776 is very similar to the Sailor 1911 Large I reviewed a couple of weeks ago. It has approximately the same shape, almost the same size,... Apart from the gold accents instead of silver, it is hardly any different in appearance.

The looks of the #3776 are quite satisfying, it's a classic, cigar-shaped acrylic pen with classy gold accents. It's a very decently sized pen, at 14cm, or around 5.5 Inches when closed. However it is quite light, only 20 grams, but that's inherent to the acrylic material used for the body and cap.
The difference in price is only slightly visible if it comes to design and build quality: The acrylic on this pen feels a bit cheaper, and seems slightly less scratch-resistant than the Sailor, there's also a small seam on the section of the pen.

The center band has some very subtle and stylish engraving, this is also the only branding visible on the outside of the pen. The gold trims work quite well with the black acrylic, but for those who prefer silver trims: there's also a more modern-looking silver trimmed version available.

Overall I really like the looks and the build quality of this pen is still very decent, it just isn't on par with the Sailor yet.

I personally prefer to post the cap, because it adds some weight, but it's long enough to be used unposted as well! There is a little step from barrel to section, but I haven't really had any trouble with it.

A cool feature of this particular model is the slip and seal cap. It ensures an airtight seal when capped, which makes it almost impossible to dry out. Platinum states that it can easily survive months without drying out. I'm really impressed by this feature, the system has worked flawlessly so far, it's so easy, but brilliant at the same time! The pen always starts to write as soon as it hits the paper. A very occasional hard start occurs, but not nearly as often as with other pens!

A simple and modern gold nib with a nice heart-shaped breather hole!
On the business-end, you'll find a decent sized 14k gold nib that performs excellent. It has a rather minimalistic appearance, which gives the pen a modern touch. The Medium nib writes smooth, though with a noticeable amount of feedback. The flow is very balanced, not too wet, but not dry either, it doesn't skip at all (Also because of the slip and seal cap!). I found the Medium to be more like a European fine, but it's still broader than most Japanese Mediums would be. The nib performs really good, the price difference isn't noticeable at all when it comes to writing performance!

All things considered, the Platinum #3776 Century is a great pen for those who want a high-quality Japanese writing tool, without breaking the bank. In fact, you can never go wrong with a pen like this - and same goes for the Sailor-, it's a design that will probably never go out of style!
Yes, it does have a few construction flaws, but for around 170 USDollars, this is definitely a good deal! This model is also available in a silver trim version, as well as a transparent burgundy red and transparent Chartres blue version for the same price or even less!

I bought mine at Fontoplumo, a great Dutch online shop that ships worldwide, be sure to check it out!


  1. I have two of these pens. I think you did a nice review here. Like you I appreciate the cap seal feature on this pen. I don't write with it every day but when I do it never hesitates. I really love the sleek classic design. When you mentioned the seam on the section I felt on my own pen and felt none. I got the loupe and did find one faintly but it has no feel. Glad you like the pen over-all.

    1. Thanks! The seam isn't too big of a deal, it is indeed only very faintly visible!

  2. These pens are great writers! I have one in EF and one in SF. Gonna buy an UEF and a M later, so I can decide which nib size I want, when I finally order a Nakaya pen :)