For anyone looking to venture into the world of fountain pens, a LAMY Safari or Al-Star would be a safe bet. I have several Safari fountain pens. This is my first Al-Star.
The Al-Star is basically the same as the Safari except the body is made of aluminum whereas the Safari body is durable plastic. The Al-Stars also have a translucent base whereas the Safari fountain pens have a base that is the same color as the body.
This purple LAMY Al-Star is the newest color available. It sports a fine nib, which is my favorite nib size. I have a medium nib, and I find that it just pours out too much ink for me.
I wish you could see the barrel in person. It's beautiful. The color is rich and changes slightly in different light. It's a color that I think could easily be unisex. I have a thing for confident men sporting manly purples. ;)
The Al-Star is a great pen. If you're looking for more weight, go for the Al-Star. I'd say the Safari and the Al-Star are equally as durable and are affordable in the $30-$40 range.
This Al-Star was purchased from Appointments in downtown Cincinnati.