Retractable Fountain Pens: LAMY Dialog 3 vs Pilot Vanishing Point

Thinking of buying a capless, retractable fountain pen? We’re comparing features of two popular models, the LAMY Dialog 3 and the Pilot Vanishing Point, to help you decide which fountain pen is best suited for your pocket!

Opening/Closing Mechanism

Vanishing Point: One click of the button on the top of the pen makes the nib appear or disappear. This can easily be done with one hand. When the nib is retracted into the pen body a protective shutter mechanism closes over the tip.

Dialog 3: Grasp opposite ends of the pen with each hand, give the barrel a twist and the nib smoothly glides out the bottom or retracts back into the pen. When retracted, a protective ball valve closes over the nib.


Vanishing Point: Stationary clip mounted near the nib end of the pen. When clipped to a shirt pocket the nib points up to reduce the chance of any leaks, and when writing the clip points away from your hand.

LAMY Dialog - nib, clip, palladium

Dialog 3: Movable clip mounted near the nib end of the pen. When the nib is advanced the clip recesses slightly into the body, creating an ergonomic writing experience. Once the nib is retracted the clip can be lifted and secured to a bag or pocket. This design is a great example of genius German engineering!


Vanishing Point: 18k gold compact hooded nib in either gold or rhodium finish. Extra-fine, fine, medium or broad.

Dialog 3: 14k gold, bi-color gold and rhodium finish. Extra-fine, fine, medium or broad.

Filling System

Vanishing Point: Pilot/Namiki IC50, IC100 ink cartridges or a Pilot CON-50 ink converter (included).

Dialog 3: LAMY T10 ink cartridges or a LAMY Z26 ink converter (included).

Body Material & Weight

Vanishing Point: Metal, 1.1 oz.
Dialog 3: Metal, 1.69 oz.

Pen Colors

Vanishing Point: Black Matte, Gun Metal Gray, Blue Carbonesque, Black Carbonesque, Yellow, Desert Orange, Copper Red, Mountain Blue, Tropical Purple, Valley Green, Red, White, Black, Blue, Raden, Chrome and more…
Dialog 3: Palladium, Matte Black

Pen Size

Vanishing Point: Pen length when nib is retracted: 5.5″; Nib extended: 5.4″; Diameter (not including clip): 0.5″.
Dialog 3: Pen length when nib is retracted: 5.5″. Nib extended: 6.2″. Diameter (not including clip): 0.5″.

Do you use a retractable capless fountain pen? If so, what do you like about it?

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Don’t Let Your Fountain Pen Become a Freezing Fatality This Winter!

Snowy City

Do you live in a town with a cold climate? Have you ever left your fountain pen in a parked car or other frigid place and come back hours later to discover ink exploding out of your spare ink cartridges or a crack in the barrel of your fountain pen? These annoying mishaps are caused by the fountain pen ink expanding as it freezes. I grew up in a city with very cold winters and would give up entirely on using any sort of pen when I was outdoors on the coldest of days. Even ballpoint pens would freeze and refuse to write. My winter writing arsenal consisted of pencils only.

Noodler’s Ink has addressed these frozen ink issues by creating freeze-resistant Polar Inks. Noodler’s Polar Inks are not meant to carry you through a severe winter in Antarctica, but they will resist forming a solid mass of ice within a glass ink bottle during most cold weather conditions. If some icy slush forms in the bottle, the ink will still be fine when it warms to room temperature. Noodler’s assures us that these inks “are made to resist the damaging expansion that water based products can be subject to when exposed to freezing temperatures and harsh winter weather.” Your fountain pen will be much safer when exposed to the cold temperatures of winter when it is filled with Polar Ink.

Currently, Noodler’s Polar Fountain Pen Ink is available in these colors:

Are you prepared to winter? Why not prepare your fountain pen by filling it with Noodler’s Polar Ink.

Noodler's Ink - Polar Black

Noodler’s Ink – Polar Black

Noodler's Ink - Polar Blue

Noodler’s Ink – Polar Blue

Noodler's Ink - Polar Green

Noodler’s Ink – Polar Green

Noodler's Ink - Polar Brown

Noodler’s Ink – Polar Brown

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