A belated post! Based on my photos, they were taken on 13 November *blush* well, what’s new, I am a well-known procrastinator.
So this is all about my first Massdrop experience, and some pictures of my first Noodler’s experience all rolled into one.
First off, my very first Massdrop. I have heard of them before, but never even signed up or explored it before this drop. They are great at gathering communities who have the same interests / want to purchase similar things, but are prohibited by high product or shipping costs. So it’s very ‘useful’ for stationery/pen/notebook people like me with niche interests.
Prices are reasonably cheap, since Massdrop is one party ordering in bulk from one supplier. Just do your maths by checking other sites for pricing.
What I did not realise was you can actually commit to join drops once they reach a lower or lowest price point. Massdrop works in such a way where X number of purchases will ‘unlock’ lower price points. I think I was too excited about owning my first Noodler’s pens and inks, and I didn’t read properly so I missed out on the lower price point pledge (at least $5 lower). So if you’re new to Massdrop, remember to look out for that!
Here’s an example. If I joined this Notebook drop now, I would pay $56.99. Whereas, to save some cash, I could commit to join (see the small little link) at the lowest price point of $52.99. Then enter all your necessary shipping and payment information. Once the lowest price point has been unlocked, I would be automatically (I think) added to the drop and payment is deducted.
Of course, the difference in price is not that much OR if you are concerned that the lowest price point will not be reached, feel free to join drops at any time.
I joined the Noodler’s Ink and Pen Drop on 14 Oct, which meant that I got the package of 2 pens and 2 inks for US$65 (The Ahab cost an extra $5). The drop finally completed on 19 Oct (yay!) and a second email update came the very next day, saying they had placed the order with Noodler’s.
Obviously, Massdrop does not have any of these items in stock. They place orders once drops are complete, and the supplier sends these items to Massdrop to be re-packed and shipped. I have seen a number of reviews and feedback where people received the wrong item so this worried me a bit. The process, obviously, also affects the speed at which you receive your package.
On 29 Oct, I finally received another email update saying that the items had been shipped. Boy, was I excited. However, for cost reasons, the shipping method they use for international packages do not have tracking numbers. So it had to be a guessing game as to delivery date. Now, I have heard some reviews in my part of the world saying that Massdrop packages are notoriously slow, so I lowered my expectations and gave it 3 weeks or even a month.
Guess what! I was on holiday when it came! Of course! I was away from 8 to 12 Nov, so it reached my doorstep on either the 10th or 11th (Mon or Tue). Unfortunately, when I reached home, I had a raging fever and tummy due to some weird salmonella, and was out of it until the weekend. It was only then that I felt human again to be able to enjoy the unboxing and photo-taking.
I have tried out the pens and inks. What is that smell??? But, due to a lack of good quality paper/notebooks, unfortunately I will not be giving a writing sample or review of the pens / inks for the time being. Flex pens = major ink flow = need for quality paper.
So, the verdict for Massdrop is: Join Massdrop! You will not regret it!
Pricing: Worth it! Just do your maths. Based on Gouletpen prices, 2 Noodler’s inks, an Ahab and a Konrad costs US$65. I paid US$65 including shipping.
Reliability: Great! Noodler’s inks are notorious for being full to the brim. I received them intact, not a spill in sight.
Speed: Great! It was not as slow as expected. 2 weeks shipping from US to here is not unreasonable, considering that Massdrop uses a cheaper option to keep costs low for buyers. I have shipped inks from China before, and due to limitations, only sea shipments are allowed. Economy sea shipping (Inks are heavy and hike up shipping costs!) can take as long as a month to reach Singapore, and you have to tack on another week or so for local handling too.
Here’s some pictures of the unboxing and the pens / inks! Click on the photos to see a slideshow.