Variety is on Vacation


This probably hasn’t happened since I returned to using fountain pens some ten years ago. I’ve used the same pen with the same ink for an entire week!

One would expect frequent ink changes from an inkophile but with a new ink each time. Dang if I haven’t refilled the pen at least three times with the same ink just in the past four days. That’s unheard of around here. My other pens are as jealous as, well, any slighted rival might be.

True it is summer which begs for a simple routine and a no fuss lifestyle. Getting my regular rotation down to ten pens seemed sufficient just a couple of weeks ago. Now the lot has been winnowed to a single pen. How can this be?

Apparently variety has gone on vacation and left behind a suitable, workhorse duo to tied me over until it can return to rule over my pen rotation. I don’t know if I miss it or am relieved but with certainty this could prove to be the easiest summer on record though hopefully not the hottest.

Oh, in case you were wondering, the winner is the Pilot Namiki Falcon SF with Diamine Violet previously written about in Pen and Ink Serendipity. Others have come close, very close, like the Lamy Safari CI with Montblanc Racing Green but I continued to use other pens intermittently. The current situation is something quite different, exclusive and reminiscent of infatuation. If so, it should blow over soon. I am if nothing else fickle about such things.

Has this ever happened to you? If so, what were the offending pen and ink? Perhaps with forewarning, it will be easier to avoid another fatal attraction in the same season. No promises yet for autumn though…



  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Margana, dandelion. dandelion said: Nice! RT @inkophile: Variety is on Vacation: http://wp.me/pfSKv-AG […]


  2. I have refilled my Pilot Falcon SM with J. Herbin 1670 about three times in a row, which is unusual for me. While I can’t say that another pen hasn’t occasionally been used, I am using it about 95% of the time. It’s due for another refill, and I suspect that it will continue its dominance in my pen rotation.


  3. I understand exactly what you mean. My go-to pen is a Namiki VP (black carbon finish) with Noodlers Kingfisher Blue. I’ve stopped using other pens completely.


  4. Ah-Ha…..that darn Violet is addicting, isn’t it?
    I tried to warn you. Has this ever happened to you with a green or brown ink?


    • The short version, Peggy, is yes and yes. However, a little explanation might be in order so here’s the long version.

      J. Herbin Poussiere de Lune in a Parker ’51’ Vacumatic EF ruled my rotation seven or eight years ago and has remained a staple ever since. So violets are not exactly new but with all I have at hand, none of them has seen such consistent use as Diamine Violet this past week.

      Many colors have been #1 in rotation, greens and browns included. Diamine Emerald, J. Herbin Vert Empire, Iroshizuku Shin-Ryoku, Sailor Brown, Noodler’s Golden Brown and J. Herbin Lie de The are but a few. Now that I look at the list, nearly all are the most fun with a flex nib. In fact Sailor Brown had a Namiki Falcon to itself for years.

      A pen with a fab nib is half the partnership though a stub or superior round nib can be as enchanting as a flexible one. Finding such a pleasing duo as the Namiki Falcon SF with Diamine Violet is uncommon fun so I just had to share my good fortune. But now that I see David has something similar going with the Namiki Falcon SM, it has pushed me over the edge to acquire one of those. Just think! Now I’ll get to find the perfect ink for that one, too. 🙂


  5. I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around this whole “same pen and ink for a week” thing.


    • Consider it an acquired taste. 🙂


  6. They say confession is good for the soul. Also, they say misery loves company. They say quite a few things. Me? Mont Blanc Racing Green in my orange Lamy Safari M nib – 3 times running. It would be 4 but my sample is used up.


    • MBRG is always in my Safari CI so I truly understand the fascination. I don’t think of it as green but rather as my version of basic black.

      My sympathies on running out of it. I so hope MB will get smart and re-release it. Yeah, I know that’s a point of view held only by an optimist but hope dies hard.


  7. I used a Pelikan M400 with Waterman Violet exclusively, by choice, for about 2 months last summer. I was that in love with the combination. It wore off, though, when I rediscovered Diamine Damson.


  8. Sorry if this is a dumb question but how is it that you change inks so frequently?

    Is it by keeping several pens filled with different inks? Half filling the cartridges? Or perhaps dumping out the ink from a cartridge, and then refilling it on a whim?


    • Good question. There are at least ten pens on my desk at one time but that number can push twenty easily. I prefer converter fillers but with few exceptions only fill them halfway. If I need to refill with another color, the current ink gets used up first. Putting ink back in a bottle risks contamination so on the rare occasion that there is still a drop or two in the converter, it goes down the drain.

      It’s a little like having a box of crayons. No two are alike and there are lots of colors from which to choose.


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