Lamy Al-Star Fountain Pen Review


You can find the Lamy Al-Star/Safari in my Top Five Starter Pens post. If you’re confused, the Lamy Safari is the original pen. It has a plastic body, while the Al-Star’s is made of aluminum (thus, Al-Star). I’ve never owned the original Safari. They’re so similar that I lumped them together in the list. This, however, will be a review of the Al-Star.


Packaging and Presentation

The Al-Star comes in a simple cardboard box. It’s adequate for shipping. There’s nothing special about it. It does the job. I’d be more prone to throw it away than most pen packages.


Appearance and Build

This is a solid, well-built pen - especially this aluminum version. The Safari family of pens is well known for having a unique triangular grip. It’s apparently a help in learning how to properly hold a pen. Some people hate it - I think those that hold their pens like koalas (like one of my kids). I have no problem with it and find it quite comfortable.


Nib and Filling System

Lamy nibs are typically smooth and wet. I originally had an extra-fine nib on this pen. Early on, though, I swapped it out for a fine. The extra-fine was extremely dry and scratchy. The black fine I purchased at Pen Place in Kansas City suits me perfectly.

The Safari and Al-Star are cartridge/converter pens. However, they only use proprietary Lamy cartridges and converters. A cartridge or two (I believe) are included. You have to buy the converter separately. Keep that in mind. Both work just fine.

Feel and Experience

I enjoy writing with my graphite Lamy Al-Star. It’s a durable, attractive pen. I think the grip feels fine. This a great, workhorse pen. That’s why it’s included in my Top Five.

(This website uses referral links. Read my disclosure policy here for more info.)