We all know Lamy as an excellent choice for a starter pen, whether someone gets the Safari as their first fountain pen or the famous 2000 as their first gold nib. Regardless, most of their lineup is packed with immense value that leaves most consumers happy. However, there are a few "awkward" pens in their lineup that, at least on the surface, don't belong anywhere. The Lamy Scala is one of these pens.
This pen is a tank. It's made with a full-metal body that adds a noticeable heft to the instrument. The body is made of soft, brushed aluminum that feels amazing to touch. The ends and the grip section get a premium chrome finish. The grip is comfortable in hand. The tolerances of every part of the pen remain crisp, and nothing seems out of place. Here, Lamy continues their legacy of clean design. The Scala weighs in at 42 grams.
However, one thing to note is the capping mechanism on the pen. It's a snap-on and is generally very solid and reliable. When the pen is capped, there is a little play in the vertical direction and little-to-no play in the horizontal direction. As a result, the pen doesn't feel as secure as a screw-on cap, but this sacrifice is made for the added convenience, and the trade-off is worth it. The Scala is very secure, and this slight looseness from the capping mechanism doesn't bother me, but it's something to note.
The standard edition of the Scala comes with a standard Lamy steel nib, and there isn't anything spectacular about the experience. Don't get me wrong – the pen still is delightful to use, and the extensive craftsmanship behind this model is evident. The ink flows well, just like any other Lamy. I'm not used to heavier fountain pens, so this may be solely a personal issue, but this pen is tough to use when posted, which is a shame because the pen is very satisfying to post. Writing when posted feels too back-heavy and uncontrollable. Even when unposted, the pen weighs in at 25 grams, which is definitely on the heavier side.
This pen is very well thought out and most people would thoroughly enjoy writing with it. However, the Lamy Scala can't compete with other offerings in the market; the $100 price point is highly competitive. When gold-nib Pilot Elites and eyedropper-filler Opus 88s are available, only a few people will choose the Lamy Scala. It doesn't have anything flashy, but that also makes the pen extremely reliable. Want a new nib? It's affordable, and this is a good option if you're the type to damage delicate nibs. The Scala is a pen for those who want a premium, no-frills writing instrument that stylishly gets the job done without having to be too careful with the pen.
Overall, the Lamy Scala is a fantastic pen and I thoroughly enjoy using it. It's nice to use and is a nice addition to the Lamy lineup without pretending to be what it isn't.