Monday, August 30, 2021

Fountain Pen Review: Platinum Curidas Gran Red

Back in time when I wasn't using fountain pens yet, I hoarded Pilot G2s in all available colors. They're sturdy, reliable, and cheap. They're also retractable 'click pens' that I love because I didn't need to worry about losing pen caps. Shifting to full fountain pen use changed my writing behavior and preferences. Since then, I got used to pens with caps that snap or screw onto the pens. There are also very few retractable fountain pens, and I only had one of them. Thankfully, Platinum announced in early 2020 the release of their brand new retractable fountain pen, the Curidas. The Curidas is a translucent fountain pen available in five colors, named after combining the English word curiosity and the Japanese word Kuridasu, which means to let out. 

It's true that the Curidas has let out people's curiosity. Before its release, fountain pen collectors and enthusiasts clamored for the Curidas. It was one of the most anticipated fountain pens of 2020, and everyone just wanted to get their Curidas fountain pens. I passed on the opportunity to get a pen last year, but luckily, I got one two weeks ago when received their new stocks of Platinum Curidas and sent one to me for review. I was so excited to get another retractable fountain pen, and I'm so happy I got one in red!

The outer box of Platinum Curidas is made of board paper with a stylized rendition of the fountain pen and the Curidas logo.
The inner box is made of plastic and contains the Curidas fountain pen, Platinum converter, cartridge, an instruction manual, and a set of tools for disassembling the pen's clip.

The Curidas is one of the world's few retractable fountain pens, and Platinum's first. With the Curidas, Platinum offers a new and unique mechanism and a different writing experience. It is available in five translucent colors and three nib widths. It can be filled with ink using a Platinum cartridge or through bottled ink using the supplied converter. It's helpful that the Curidas can be safely and easily taken apart for cleaning. The clip of the Curidas is removable, and Platinum includes a tool to help in disassembly. This is useful for people who want to use their Curidas fountain pen without the clip.

Platinum Curidas Gran Red fountain pen with a medium nib.

The Curidas is comfortable to use. Unlike the Pilot Vanishing Point's clip that extends almost to the nib, the clip of the Curidas is short, leaving enough space that the user can grip while writing. I also love that Platinum used colored translucent plastic for the Curidas because I can peer into what's inside the barrel, and also because they remind me of the Pilot mechanical pencils I used in my illustration classes in college. Gran Red is stunning! But don't let the plastic put you off—the Curidas is a sturdy and reliable fountain pen. 

Platinum Curidas with the nib extended.

The Platinum Curidas fountain pen has the following specifications and measurements:
  • Length, nib retracted: 6.04 in | 15.34 cm
  • Length, nib extended: 5.50 in | 13.9 cm
  • Diameter, body and section/grip: 0.53 in | 1.34 cm
  • Full pen weight: 24 g | 0.84 oz
  • Body material: Resin
  • Cap: Capless
  • Clip: Steel
  • Nib: Steel
  • Nib sizes: Extra Fine, Fine, Medium
  • Colors available: Gran Red, Abyss Blue, Graphite Smoke, Prism Crystal, and Urban Green
  • Filling mechanism: Platinum converter or cartridge, both supplied with each pen purchase

I mentioned that Platinum offers a new mechanism in the Curidas, and this design is the only thing that may put off some people from getting one. In order to fill this pen with ink, — using a cartridge or converter — one needs to partly disassemble the pen, and no, there is no other way to fill the pen with ink. The top part of the barrel needs to be removed, and the nib assembly after that. But Platinum designed this assembly with guided grooves so that the user will not be lost in the process of filling or refilling the pen with ink. After receiving this pen, I took a few days before finally taking the pen apart to ink it, and I realized it was so easy to do it. And if I can do it, yes you can do it, too!

It was easy to disassemble the Curidas as taking apart the nib assembly is guided by assigned grooves. It's intimidating at first, but once you get it, it's very easy to do.

The Curidas is a unique fountain pen, but the extended button is quite long. It makes clicking it a bit tricky for me because getting my thumb over it takes my hand away from the other end and increases the risk of hitting something as the nib extends. 

The button of the Curidas is longer than most retractable pens' buttons and it makes the pen exceptionally long.

I received the Gran Red Curidas with a medium nib and it writes so well! I expected it to be dry and scratchy, but I am surprised that it's not. The medium nib writes smoothly, almost stubbish, and delivers wide and wet strokes right out of the box. This medium nib writes thicker lines than most Japanese medium nibs do, in fact, it's very close to a western medium.

The medium nib of the Curidas writes smoothly with wide and wet strokes.

Side by side, the Curidas dwarfs the Pilot Vanishing Point with its long button. It's also thicker at 0.53 inches in diameter than the Vanishing Point at 0.44 inches, but it's still comfortable to grip without the clip getting in the way. While it seems a heavy pen, it's actually light and comfortable to use even for long writing periods.

Platinum Curidas and Pilot Vanishing Point, both retractable fountain pens from Japan.

The Curidas is longer than most full-sized pens because of its long button. With its nib retracted, it is longer than the Lamy Al-star—my standard pen for size comparison, Pilot Vanishing Point, Platinum Prefounte, and Sailor 1911 Profit Junior, also known as Compass 1911. I also noticed that the material for Gran Red is very similar to that of the Crimson Red Prefounte. When the nib is extended and the button is pressed, the Curidas is still slightly longer than all of these fountain pens. 

From the top: Lamy Al-star Ruby Red, Pilot Vanishing Point, Curidas Gran Red, Prefounte Crimson Red, and Sailor Compass 1911 Transparent Red.
Even with the nib extended and the button is pressed, the Curidas is still slightly longer than all of the four pens.

Testing fountain pen nibs and doing writing samples are always a challenge for me. While my purpose is to show how a nib writes, I also want to produce writing samples that are relevant to the pens' origins, designers, or brands. However, there are times when I cannot find any written piece that I feel is suitable, and I do random poems or song lyrics. This time, though, I remembered something I wanted to do before. Remember Sex and the City? The film? There was a scene in the film where Carrie and Mr. Big were reading together, and the book was Love Letters of Great Men, Volume 1. Carrie read a love letter to Mr. Big, and it was Beethoven's letter to his Immortal Beloved. Now that love letter is special to me and one I will always love reading. It's also one I loved writing with a very special red fountain pen with a smooth, wet, stubbish medium nib I filled with matching red ink, Robert Oster's Red Candy.

I used the Platinum converter included in the box to fill the Curidas fountain pen with Robert Oster ink. The medium nib wrote smoothly out of the box, and I did not experience any hard starts, dryness, or skipping. It's a wonderful experience writing with a spectacular nib.

Here is a perfect match of fountain pen, ink, and paper: Platinum Curidas Gran Red, Robert Oster Red Candy, and Midori MD notebook. All perfect for Beethoven's love letter. 
Ever thine. Ever mine. Ever ours.

I missed getting the Curidas the first time it was launched last year and I didn't think that I'll get to try one, especially during these difficult times. But here's one with me now, in a bright and happy color that's just perfect for the times. The Curidas is a wonderful fountain pen made by great pen makers, and I recommend it to anyone who wants to try retractable fountain pens. Get one for your Platinum collection!

Rants of The Archer thanks for providing the Platinum Curidas Gran Red fountain pen in this review. Scribe offers Platinum fountain pens in their stores and through their online service, Visit their website to learn more about their products, promos, and new brand offerings. now offers worldwide shipping. For more updates, follow them on social media:

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