The Pilot Custom Urushi fountain pen is the latest addition to Pilot’s Custom pen range. It is an oversize fountain pen and the largest in the Pilot Custom family, a flat-top pen made of ebonite, coated with many layers of vermillion urushi lacquer. The Pilot Custom Urushi comes with a large #30 nib made from 18k gold available in 3 widths: fine-medium, medium, and broad.

This Pilot Custom Urushi lacquered ebonite fountain pen was created by maki-e artisans (kokkokai) in Japan. It features the Roiro Urushi technique which requires time and skill to create a uniform and mirror-like finish. Each Custom urushi pen is lacquered, cured, and polished three times to create a beautiful quality result.

Urushi is a lacquer derived from a natural resin from a tree bearing the same name. The peculiarity of Japanese lacquer, unlike other forms of traditional handicrafts, is that it has a totally autochthonous origin without being imported from abroad.

The Urushi differs substantially from the other lacquers by the way it dries. In fact, it does not follow a drying process, but requires exposure to specific temperatures and humidity (between 10 to 20 degrees centigrade and between 70 and 90 percent humidity) to properly cure. Under these conditions, significant components of urushiol and lacquer undergo a chemical transformation that produces a “curtain”, that is, the lacquer layer. Once cured, the lacquer creates a durable and brilliant sheath with great adhesive strength.

The Japanese Urushi lacquer is the most precious lacquer in the whole East. For this series of pens, Pilot has used the “Roiro Urushi Shiage” polishing technique, which consists of rubbing a piece of raw lacquer repeatedly, with final polishing done with special carbon.

After a couple of weeks, when the lacquer is dry, it turns out to be harder than the glass.”Roiro Urushi Shiage” lacquering technique is considered the most difficult since the process takes a long time.

The pen comes with a con-70 converter and a cartridge.