EDK, it’s pretty much here. The Massdrop release date is finalized, 26 October 2015. The Massdrop poll is currently up and if you haven’t voted, please do so. You are going to see some nice photos of the material/color combinations listed on there. I will give you a brief rundown of our thoughts on this pen and why we are allowing more customization on it.
Massdrop will have access to the following versions of the EDK: Tumbled Raw Aluminum, Matte Black Aluminum, Brass, and Copper. Combinations of those will be available as follows: Tumbled Upper+Black Lower, Tumbled Upper+Brass Lower, Tumbled Upper+Copper Lower, Black Upper+Tumbled Lower, Black Upper+Brass Lower, and Black Upper+Copper Lower. Pricing will vary depending on material combinations and is still being finalized. Likely the pricing won’t be available until the day the drop starts. This is an initial Massdrop offering and while we will eventually have these pens available direct, we don’t have a timeframe for and EDK release via the Karas Kustoms page. So snatch them up now.
In other Karas news – the INK, for a short time referred to as INK 2.0, will make its reappearance in early November. We will be adding full copper and brass versions as well as the brown and olive anodized versions. There are a few other special features that will be given out closer to the release date but for now I will just go down the list of functional and aesthetic design changes/additions we made for this version of the INK.
Starting at the top and working down. After feedback from quite a few of our initial fountain pen users, we decided to add a clipless cap. The cap retains the INKs characteristic angles and single line design, but without the clip is more symmetric and smooth looking. Apparently many people don’t need or use clips and some people are downright anti-clip. That’s fine with us, we are happy to accommodate both sides of the “clip” debate.
Another piece of nearly universal feedback we received was in the size of the nibs we chose for the original INK. We settled on the #5 Schmidt nib as it was easiest to source and used on quite a few pens. But early users of the INK commented that the size of the nib didn’t quite match the size of the pen. So all the way back last year Dan began looking at what design changes needed to be made in order to use a bigger nib. We had to source a new nib manufacturer as Schmidt doesn’t make a #6 nib, and after much research and testing we settled on Bock as that source. Then came redesigning the section length which became a dual benefit as it needed to be lengthened for the new nib unit to work and adding length to it allowed us to stabilize it with added thread depth.
During this process we looked at the aesthetics of the nib and section together. It became apparent to us that we really wanted to try something different. Something that harkened back to hooded and semi-hooded nibs popular in the fifties, sixties and seventies. What we ended up being able to accomplish is slightly recessing the nib back into the section. This doesn’t affect function at all but makes the look of the nib and section a little more uniform by not having the plastic “collar” showing when the nib unit is seated firmly. Meh, let’s call it like it really is, it’s just plain cooler.
As mentioned above we had to change our threads on both the sections and the caps. This means that the original INK parts are not compatible with this version of the INK. This was not done intentionally, we attempted to retain as much backwards compatibility as possible but it quickly became apparent with the change in nib sizes we would have to alter the section and cap threads.
We are will be maintaining the colors from the original INK, though there may be some variance in hue. We will be adding brown and olive to these pens to give a wider range of colors. When you purchase the ink you will have the option of swapping sections with material types. So if you wanted a brass pen with copper section, you could get that. Aluminum with brass section, no problem. Copper with aluminum section, yep that’s available too.
The date for this release is quickly approaching, and we can’t wait to get these out the door and into your hands. The changes we have made were relatively minor but in the end we believe the final product is indicative of who we are as a company. We adapt and make changes when we need to. We listen to feedback and value our customer’s voices. We aren’t afraid to admit we can make something better and we jump at the chance to do just that. We hope you feel the same way when your INK shows up. And when it does, write us a note and tell us what you think.