I usually have a good grip on my pen habit, but the Opus 88 Koloro Demonstrator was a complete impulse buy. I’ve always been fascinated by the Franklin Christoph Pocket 40, but I’ve never been able to find it in stock, and I wanted something with a bit more ink capacity at a more affordable price. I stumbled upon the Opus 88 on Pen Chalet, and it ticks many of the Franklin Christoph boxes but has a massive ink capacity and is significantly less expensive.
The Opus 88 Koloro is a big pen, so small hands beware. I have to admit that I’m not typically a fan of large pens, and the size did give me pause prior to ordering. I’m happy to say that I really enjoy the size of the pen. Yes, it’s large, but the material gives it a lighter feel. Since the pen doesn’t post, which may be a dealbreaker for some, it’s not absurdly long in the hand and still rests comfortably in the web of my fingers.
Demonstrators can get a little boring after a while, but the smokey finish on the threading of the Koloro is anything but bland. The pen uses an eyedropper fill system and takes on the characteristics of the ink inside. I filled mine with Diamine Red Dragon, and—well—take a look for yourself. It’s gorgeous. As a supernatural mystery writer, there’s something I find oddly appealing about writing with ink that looks like dried blood.
Speaking of eye-droppers, the Opus 88 Koloro is my first eyedropper pen. Instead of inserting a cartridge or ink converter, you fill the pen by unscrewing the ink reserve and dropping ink directly inside with the included eye dropper. This allows the pen to hold a massive amount of ink and doesn’t tarnish its beautiful appearance with ugly cartridges or converters. Not sure how an eye drops works? Take a look at the video below.
Piston fillers like the Lamy 2000 utilize a piston knob at the end of the barrel to pull ink into the ink chamber. Although the Opus 88 Koloro is an eyedropper pen, it has a piston too although the mechanism serves a unique purpose here. Instead of pulling ink into the pen’s ink chamber, the piston separates the ink chamber from the feed allowing the writer to control the flow of ink. This is especially useful when storing or carrying the pen, since the chamber can be closed off when not in use reducing the chance of leaks. The feed will hold enough ink for shorter writing sessions, but the chamber can be opened during longer sessions to ensure a steady flow of ink from the massive ink chamber.
The Opus 88 Koloro isn’t an on-the-go pocket pen—it’s far too large. The cap also takes ten or so twists to uncap, so good luck doing this with one hand. I primarily use the Koloro for outlining fiction projects on index cards and editing printed drafts, so it tends to live on my desk. The pen does fit comfortably in my Nock Co. Tallulah, still my preferred case of the moment, so there’s no need to worry about whether or not it’ll fit in your favorite case.
Although the Opus 88 Koloro Demonstrator was an impulse buy, it has quickly become one of my absolute favorite pens. The pen’s aesthetic is stunning and unique with its smoky finish, massive ink chamber, and classy black clip. Its filling and ink flow system are well designed and functional, and the pen is an overall joy to use. Although I don’t love larger pens, I make an exception for this one, and I’ve been carrying the pen with me daily since I purchased it months ago. If you’re looking for a unique pen design that’s still sturdy enough to serve as a a daily workhorse, I highly recommend taking a look at the Opus 88 Koloro.