Archive for the ‘Miscellanea’ Category

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Inks That Cause Problems Including Negative Opinions

05/01/2015

Recently a Tweet about ink caught my attention. In 140 characters, a pen blogger announced he was ending his use of a well-known brand of ink. Apparently a bad experience with one ink means all inks in the line are bad. He may have had other bad experiences, but only referenced one in the Tweet. Certainly, no one wants to damage a pen over the use of an ink. Unless mold-contaminated, nearly every ink has its place and pen mate. That should make it pretty darned hard to condemn an entire company over one ink.

Not to condemn any brand, but I’ve had problems of one sort or another with Diamine, J. Herbin, Private Reserve, DeAtramentis, Rohrer & Klingner, Parker Penman, Iroshizuku and Noodler’s. (Note that Diamine, J. Herbin, and Noodler’s are on my short list of favorite brands.) In most cases, the issue was with a particular color. A few inks degraded over time while others stained vintage pens. Some grew mold though that could have been contamination not attributable to the manufacturer.

R&K is a special case since the ink isn’t a problem, but the caps on my bottles don’t seal well. That has produced evaporation and messy leaks. I haven’t purchased a bottle in two years, so that issue may have been resolved.

Sure, some of my pens have been damaged by ink. Two Esterbrooks with green barrels sport stains acquired on my watch. Since that happened to two different models with the same type of plastic body and with two different brands of ink, the material might be the cause rather than the ink.

So here’s the deal. Highly saturated inks can cause pen staining and other forms of pen damage. Some inks have bad reputations for good reason. But if you use one of them, you “takes your chances.” Is it worth it? If you love an ink’s color or properties, then go for it, but in the right pen, please.

Reviews and opinions will vary, but it’s the lack of context and balance to those Twitter remarks with which I would take issue. If I have been remiss in this regard in the past, I apologize. There are rarely no positives. People who are sincerely trying to make pen, ink, and paper products that expand our choices deserve our support and sometimes a measure of constructive criticism – not condemnation or company death wishes.

Despite it all, I use every brand though not every color. If it makes me happy, the ink gets a mate and goes to work. And that is what enjoying fountain pens is all about.

Inkophile’s Guidelines for Ink Use

  • Pricey pens get low saturated inks.
  • Inks with dicey reputations go in cheap pens or a dip pen with a feed.
  • Saturated inks go in converter pens.
  • Vintage pens get low saturated inks especially Waterman and some J. Herbin colors.
  • Pens with sacs get low saturated inks and/or very frequent cleaning.
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Diamine Bilberry Makes Trouble

04/05/2015

The images tell the tale. Diamine Bilberry left its mark on my Sailor 1911 and the converter. Hrumph!

 

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Sad News

02/21/2015

There is no other way to say this but straight up. Dick Egolf passed away two days ago. He was the founder of Luxury Brands, LLC, distributor of Platinum and Noodler’s products and a good friend to the fountain pen community.

Dick was known for amongst other things enormous generosity. In fact he gave me my first Platinum #3776 Music Nib several years ago which instantly became my favorite. Over time he sent many inks and pens and contributed greatly to keeping Inkophile alive. For that I will be forever grateful.

Dick’s legacy will be carried forward by family members, Carol and John Gillett. They have been running the day-to-day business for the past year though Dick continued to be involved with the nurturing of his dream.

Thank you, Dick, for your contribution to the fountain pen world. You will be missed.

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Instagram And The Inkophile, Part 2

12/19/2014

At least for now, you can find me as TheInkophile on Instagram. Only a few photos to share, but after the holidays, quality and frequency will increase.

Speaking of the holidays, Christmas came early with the arrival of the Sony Xperia from Leigh that allowed me to join Instagram. It is a 6″ phone, huge compared to the iPhones my kids use, and it resides next to my laptop allowing me to easily track social media. With Evernote and the Dolphin browser installed, almost anything is possible. My photos are a bit too dark, but I’m working on that. Folks on Instagram seem to be pretty tolerant and for that I am grateful.

 

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Eccentric Professor

12/12/2014

It’s been a less than thrilling day with not a moment for writing or painting. However, an old friend sent something to brighten things up a bit and I’m passing it along just in case you could use a chuckle, too.

An eccentric philosophy professor gave a one-question final exam after a semester dealing with a broad array of topics.

The class was already seated and ready to go when the professor picked up his chair, plopped it on his desk, and wrote on the board: “Using everything we have learned this semester, prove that this chair does not exist.”

Fingers flew, erasers erased, notebooks were filled in furious fashion. Some students wrote more than 30 pages in one hour attempting to refute the existence of the chair. One member of the class, however, was up and finished in less than a minute.

Weeks later when the grades were posted, the rest of the group wondered how he could have gotten an A when he had barely written anything at all. His answer consisted of two words: “What chair?”

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Instagram And The Inkophile

12/10/2014

Are you on Instagram? Thanks to Leigh’s generous gift of an Android phone (!), I can now play in that humongous pond. Still getting the hang of using the phone’s camera, but that will improve with practice. Unfortunately, Inkophile is taken as is Margana. So I can use my full name or something expressive of my interests. Got any suggestions?

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A Dog, Scarves, Ink And A Journal

11/30/2014

Spent more time writing and less time surfing, but I did find a few items worth sharing…

 

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