With Montblanc being the only true prestigious fountain pen brand left in the world, we constantly see people reaching out and asking for advice on various pens from the Montblanc range. Although we have covered a number of pen models from their range already in previous articles, we have noticed a number of requests for a specific Montblanc 145 vs 146 comparison article to help our readers choose between the two.
Due to seeing so many requests, we have decided to publish our Montblanc 145 Vs 146 comparison article going over the advantages and disadvantages of each pen in the hope that we will be able to help you choose the perfect pen for you. Due to both pen models not only being from the Montblanc but also being very similar models to each other, you may be able to guess that they offer a very similar writing experience and this is probably why we see so many people asking for a comparison between the two.
Although the Montblanc 145 does have less features than the Montblanc 146, it also comes with a lower price tag while also offering a very similar writing experience. If you do only care about owning a pen from the Montblanc and the writing experience that it delivers then the Montblanc 145 will probably be the better option as it offers a very similar experience to the 146 while usually saving you over $100 depending on retailer.
As usual, we have our comparison table for both pen models showcasing their key features and benefits below. We find that the comparison table helps our readers quickly get an idea of what each pen offers without having to spend much time on their research. Below the table we have our detailed breakdown on both pen models though going into each of them in great detail to try and back up everything we say and ensure that our readers with more free time to read the whole article understand as much as possible about both pen models.
Montblanc 145 Vs 146 Head To Head
As you can see from our Montblanc 145 vs 146 comparison table above, the Montblanc 146 does have a number of features that may be important to you that the Montblanc 145 does not offer but like we touched on above when it comes to the actual writing experience, they are both very similar to each other.
This is why the 145 is our default recommendation to our readers as the pens perform very similar to each other while the 145 is cheaper. Unless you need an ink view window, a piston filler or replaceable nibs on your pen, the 145 is definitely worth it and will make a great addition to your stationery collection. Please note that the Montblanc 145 does have a “piston converter” that is more like a cartridge converter rather than a full blow piston filler so for some people, the lack of a piston filler on a 145 may be a deal-breaker.
Montblanc 145 Review
With the Montblanc 145 being our recommended fountain pen between the two featured pens, we wanted to start our in-depth look with the 145 to take a more detailed look at it. As we have mentioned in other articles, the majority of people who want to add a Montblanc to their collection want the Montblanc 149 simple for the prestige but people looking at the 145 or 146 often want the best possible pen for their money.
This is why we put the 145 ahead of the 146 but we would also like to point out that a fountain pen such as the Pelikan m400 can offer a very similar writing experience to the Montblanc 145 and save your more money. As it is a Pelikan, it does not necessarily have the same level of prestige as the Montblanc range but this is why the Pelikan range is often cheaper than their Montblanc counterparts with offering similar performance due to not having the higher price tag due to the Montblanc premium.
The Montblanc 145 Nib
One of the main selling points for the Montblanc range is that their nibs are outstanding all throughout their range and the 145 is no different. It comes with a 14 carat nib as standard offering plenty of flex and spring when writing with the pen with minimal scratch or nib issues.
Although there are some pens in the Montblanc range such as the Montblanc 149 that have an 18 carat gold nib, the majority of our readers will probably not be able to tell the difference anyway. Although it tends to be easy to tell the difference in writing performance between a stainless steel nib and a 14 carat gold nib, it is much harder to tell the difference between a 14 carat gold nib and an 18 carat gold nib due to the difference being minimal.
The Montblanc 145 is available with nibs in extra-fine, fine, medium, and broad sizes as standard direct from Montblanc. As the nibs on the Montblanc 145 are not replaceable with ease, it can be difficult to source double-broad or oblique nib options. You can technically replace the whole section and nib on the pen if needed but this tends to need to be done by a speciallist nibmeister.
The Montblanc range are a western brand and conform to standard western sizes for their fountain pen nibs. This should make it very easy for most of our readers to upgrade from their current fountain pen to the Montblanc 145 if needed. For example, if you currently use the Lamy 2000 that is also from a western brand and use the medium nib, you can switch to the medium nib Montblanc 145 and have a very similar font size when using the pen.
On the flipside of this, various Japanese pen brands are becoming more and more popular in the west and they tend to stick to the Asian nib conversion that tends to be smaller than western nibs. Due to this, if you currently use a fountain pen such as the Sailor 1911 with a medium nib and want to keep a similar font then the fine nib on the Montblanc 145 is probably going to be a closer match to your current font size although it will not be exact.
The Montblanc 145 has a wetter writing nib just like the majority of the Montblanc range to keep its writing experience as butter smooth as possible. That said, the nib on the 145 is not as wet as some of the other nibs in their range or as wet as some nibs from competing brands on the market right now.
This offers you the advantage of having a smooth writing experience due to the nib being wetter during use but not having issues with feathering, bleeding or ghosting as it is not as wet as most people expect. This can be a huge plus for many people as so many wet writing fountain pens, even the premium price point ones can bleed or ghost making the Montblanc 145 a stronger option.
The Barrel Of The Montblanc 145
All of the premium price point Montblanc fountain pens currently on the market have a barrel made from the premium quality precious resin to ensure that their customers are getting the very best for their money. Although a few competing brands do have competing fountain pen models that are also made from precious resin, we feel that the Montblanc production system is the best.
The precious resin helps by keeping the barrel of your fountain pen as tough as possible so it is able to take plenty of bumps without breaking while also being as lightweight as possible. Due to the Montblanc 145 being able to potentially last you for generations with many people who purchase a Montblanc handing their pens down to their children.
The lightweight of the precious resin really offers you benefits as it is able to prevent your hand from cramping or getting fatigue from the pen when writing with it for longer sessions. Although some fountain pen brands do still use brass for their more expensive models, this is stating to fade out as precious resin becomes cheaper and cheaper. The weight difference between a brass pen and a precious resin pen is surprising and you can definitely tell the difference.
As we touched on above, the Montblanc 145 does not actually have a traditional piston filler or cartridge convertor but uses a “piston convertor system” that is similar to a cartridge convertor. In our opinion, this may hold the pen back for some people as a huge number of people do still prefer to use fountain pens that use a piston filler. That said though, coming from Montblanc the piston convertor system is excellent and performs flawlessly.
The Montblanc 145 is also available in a wide range of colors and patterns on its barrel and cap. On top of this, there are a few limited edition versions of the Montblanc 145 but they do tend to be less common than other popular pens such as the Montblanc 149. We would also like to mention that the special edition Montblanc 145’s do cost considerably more than the regular patterns and colors but don’t tend to hold their re-sale value as much as the Montblanc 149 so keep that in mind.
The Montblanc 145 Cap
The cap of the Montblanc 145 is also made from high-quality precious resin too and offers you the same benefits as we mentioned above for the barrel. When it comes to the cap of the pen though, it does have the added benefit of the lightweight cap not causing issues with back weighting when posted. Although rare at this price point in the market when compared to the lower price brackets, some pen models do still have issued when posted with back weighting making the writing experience a total pain.
The cap of the Montblanc fountain pens use a twist to lock system that we tend to prefer, especially on any expensive fountain pens and we know that some of our readers will prefer a push to lock cap but a twist to lock will usually be better. This is due to the twist lock system having that additional protective twist to help keep the cap and barrel together when not in use where as a the push to lock system does not.
Due to the Montblanc 145 having a higher price point this helps as the last thing you want is for the barrel to fall and break or fall and go missing. Although modern fountain pens do tend to have better locking systems for their caps, the older a fountain pen gets the more likely a push to lock cap will fail where as a twist to lock, like on the Montblanc 145 will still perform well.
The Ink Reservoir Of The Montblanc 145
The piston convertor of the Montblanc 145 holds a maximum ink capacity of 1ml putting it smack bang on the average ink capacity for modern fountain pens. We are highly confident that the majority of people will be able to everything the need out of the 1ml of ink that the pen is able to hold at any given time without issue.
The refill system on the Montblanc 145 is also very easy and relatively straight forward too meaning that when the pen does need refilling you are able to do it within less than a minute. Unfortunately, the Montblanc 145 does not have an ink view window meaning that it can be a pain to actually check your ink levels quickly and plan your refills.
Montblanc 145 Writing Samples
Montblanc 146 Review
Although the Montblanc 146 is not our primary recommendation to our readers for this specific match up, it is still an excellent luxury fountain pen and outright beats many of the competing pens from other brands on the market right now. Even when you put the 146 up against the 145, the 146 will be the better option for some people due to the additional features it offers but we will touch on these throughout this section of the article.
The Montblanc 146 Nib
Although the nib design on the Montblanc 146 is very similar to the nib on the 145, it is slightly different and does have the threads to be a fully replaceable nib. Other than that though, both nibs are almost identical with both being 14 carat gold and offering a very similar writing experience with plenty of flex and spring in the nib during use.
One advantage of the Montblanc 146 is its replaceable nib as we just touched on as this allows people to expand from the standard extra-fine, fine, medium, and broad nib sizes that come on the pen directly from Montblanc. If your local stationary store is partnered with Montblanc then they often offer oblique options for their nibs as well as double-broad and potentially medium-fine too as they are able to switch the nibs out for you in store prior to selling you the pen.
Although the majority of people tend to use a nib size of fine or medium with the remainder usually using extra-fine or broad, there is a small number of people who do prefer an oblique nib, double-broad or medium-fine. If you are in this small minority then the Montblanc 146 is probably the better option as removing the whole section of the Montblanc 145 just to replace the nib is a pain and if you get a nibmeister to do it for you, their fee may push the total cost above the price tag of the Montblanc 146 anyway.
Due to the nib on the Montblanc 146 having so many similarities with the 145, it also has a very similar writing experience with it being on the wetter side of nibs when it comes to writing. That said though, it is not as wet as the Montblanc 149 or some of the Pelikan nibs offering the pen the same advantage as the 145 with it being a super smooth writer with minimal risk of bleeding or ghosting, even on thinner paper.
The Barrel Of The Montblanc 146
Just like its little brother, the barrel of the Montblanc 146 is also made from premium-quality precious resin that offers you the exact same benefits as the Montblanc 145 with the pens barrel being very tough as well as lightweight. As we have already gone over the benefits of precious resin for pen barrels and caps in the section for the 145 we will not be going over it again here to save time but in our opinion, it is the best material for any luxary fountain pen by far.
Another advantage of the Montblanc 146 over the 145 is that it’s barrel contains an actual piston filler rather than a piston convertor and as we touched on earlier in the article, some people won’t care about this but a real piston filler is still a large selling point for many people when it comes to pens. At the time of writing, the Montblanc 146 is the cheapest fountain pen in the Montblanc that offers a real piston filler rather than some form of convertor making it the popular option for anyone looking for a piston filler in their Montblanc.
The barrel of the Montblanc 146 does come in a wide range of color and trim options but the black barrel and cap with the gold trim is the most popular at the time of writing. Just like the 145, the 146 also has a number of different limited edition variants of the pen available with unique looks but just like the 145, the limited edition 146 models have a much higher price tag but don’t hold their re-sale value as well as the limited edition 149s.
We always like to point that out to our readers as we see a surprisingly high number of people purchase luxury fountain pens as an investment. Although the limited edition barrel designs for the 145 and 146 can sell for a decent amount on re-sale, it will almost always still be at a loss when compared to purchase price. On the flip side of this, due to the Montblanc 149 being the main model that fountain pen collectors seek, its limited edition runs can often have a re-sale value higher than their initial purchase price.
The Montblanc 146 Ink Reservoir
Due to the Montblanc 146 using an actual piston filler, its ink reservoir is larger than that of the Montblanc 145 with the pen offering you a maximum ink capacity of 1.4ml of ink for a full refill. In all honesty though, we doubt that the additional 0.4ml of ink is going to be making much of a difference to the majority of our readers in the grand scheme of things but for some people, depending on their circumstances it may be a selling point.
The Montblanc 146 also comes with an easy to see ink view window allowing you to quickly and easily check your current ink levels too. This is another advantage of the 146 over the 145 and probably the only one that offers a benefit to all of our readers as the other advantages of the 146 have been situational or down to preference.
Montblanc 146 Writing Samples
That bring our ultimate Montblanc 145 vs 146 comparison article to a close and although the Montblanc 146 is a solid luxury fountain pen that actually has more features than the 145, we would still recommend the Montblanc 145 to our readers over it. As we have explained, the majority of the additional features on the 146 are situational and may not be required for your needs while it still has the higher price tag.
We would guess the majority of our readers will be able to get everything that they need out of the Montblanc 145 and save a little money so we are keeping it as our primary recommendation. Additionally, we have our Montblanc 145 review online going over the pen in more detail too if you are still unsure of the pen you want to add to your collection.