Pilot Custom 823 Amber Demonstrator

For years, many in the fountain pen world hoped for a Pilot piston-filler. The Custom 823 series has surpassed expectations. The Amber Demonstrator seen here remains one of Pilot's most popular offerings. Normally provided with only limited nib choices, we can equip this pen with your choice from among the full range of fourteen different Pilot #15 14k solid gold nibs.

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Overall Rating

November 20, 2021



The 823 is probably the single best pen made. I cannot say enough good things about nibs.com. In the past, I have bought from another seller who promises to tune and smooth before shipping. I am confident that he did nothing to the stock pen. Nibs.com is completely different. I ordered an 823 with a stub grind. It shipped the next day and when I recieved it, it came with a personalized card written with my pen both before and after the work was done to it. These folks did excellent work on a beutiful pen, shipped it almost immediately and provided me proof positive that they paid close attention to my order. I'm never purchasing from anyone else. I have no idea whether they have a good return policy or customer service (though my experience leads me to believe they would) because the order I placed was done perfectly and quickly. I am very impressed with both the amazing work that took a medium 823 and made a beautiful stub. Absolutely brilliant.

This amber-hued piston-filler has now become a mainstay of the Pilot brand. The ease with which this pen fills is exceeded only by its generous ink capacity.

Don't expect to have ink fill the entire barrel, as a partial vacuum gets about 3/4 of the semi-transparent barrel topped up. Nevertheless, the ink capacity is right up there with the Pelikan M1000 and far exceeds all of the cartridge/converter systems. This pen is easy to flush out but almost impossible to get the last of the flush water out of the barrel. This has never been a problem for us except the clear barrel shows a few drops of water. 

The pump creates a vacuum on the down-stroke which ends when the piston passes a widening of the barrel near the section. The ink is then drawn up into that vacuum. This is a well-executed system, relying on a similar design to that used by Sheaffer's pens during the 1930s.

The instruction tag on the back of the cap lets you know that in order to write, you must unscrew the blind cap at the end of the barrel about 1/8 inch. When screwed down, the plunger prevents ink from entering the section, closing off ink flow when not in use, making this a great pen for travel.


We believe that Pilot nibs are among the best nibs made anywhere in the world.  The smooth writing and consistent ink flow is unsurpassed. 
The Pilot Custom 823 is available with your choice of solid gold 14K nib. These Pilot 14k nibs are well-suited to customizations including Stub, Cursive Italic, or Left Oblique, as well as the modification for added flexibility.

A handsome presentation box includes a bottle of ink, making the Custom 823 a classy gift for special occasions. A full set of papers, including instructions and the owners certificate, is included.
Unless requested otherwise, each pen or nib you purchase from us will be carefully examined, tested, and optimized for your personal writing characteristics before it ships. 

Measurements & Specifications

Closed Length 5.9"
Posted Length 6.4"
Barrel Length 4.2"
Barrel Diameter 0.5"
Section Diameter 0.4"
Ink Capacity 1.3 ml
Filling System Vacuum/Power Filler
Cap Type Threaded
Clip With Clip
Postable Postable
Pen Weight 28.8 g
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