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 TWSBI Vac 700 Review

April 2013


Well I’ve owned the big Twsbi for a couple of months now and although there are lots of reviews on the net I want to briefly set out my thoughts and impressions of the pen.

 I actually took it on a trip to the UK  along with my Rhodia Diary which I thought would be good tester, particularly wanting to see how it wrote on a long distance flight. The short answer, it was excellent. It also attracted a lot of interest

 JOWO nib

This pen is the clear demonstrator with a broad ‘Jowo’ nib and although it looks blue on the photos, it’s not, that was because it was full of ink.

The packaging was first class as usual and first impressions were, wow, a large pen, I think that it must be one of my largest, about the same as my Visconti Midnight Voyager but slightly shorter than a silver trimmed, hand-made burr walnut one that I’ve owned for many years. A quality pen.

It feels really good and substantial in the hand, very well machined and put together, it gave me great pleasure. The Vac Fill system works very well and although it’s not easy to completely fill the barrel, never-the-less, it holds a a substantial amount of ink. I reckon that it filled about three quarters of the barrel and that’s quite a lot of ink. I didn’t have to fill it up once on the three week trip. The action of Vac Fillers is a bit different in that nothing seems to be happening until the piston is almost fully pushed in and then whoosh!!! in comes the ink!

The blind cap is a bit quirky as you have unscrew it slightly if you are going to do a lot of writing, although you needn’t do it if you’re just writing a short note. When the blind cap is screwed down it’s pretty well leak proof under any circumstances. When you get used to it then it works well.

These ‘Jowo’ nibs really suit the pen, they are a size 6 I think, quite large, which I like;  smooth with good feedback and they write well on cheap paper which is an added bonus. Ink flow just about right for me,  a kind of medium wetness…if there is such a thing. I understand that there were a few issues with ‘dry’ writing when the early Vac 700 was fitted with Bock nibs, but these have obviously been fixed with the Jowo nibs.


It looks good and prestigious, solidly made, a pen with a presence.

Holds a lot of ink

Smooth nib and a first class writer……..and it feels great in the hand

What more could you want? It seems to me to be to be very underrated.

I love mine