Posts Tagged ‘best fountain pens’

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Esterbrook Nibs Find A New Home

05/17/2019

As I became unenamoured with lever fillers, Esterbrooks took a backseat to piston fillers and converters in my rotation. However, I missed their vintage nibs that were produced in great variety including italic and flexible models. Quite a few can still be found on eBay though from reading descriptions, many of those pens will need professional maintenance to regain the capacity to write well. Look for a pen with a new sac if you decide to grab one and it should provide years of good use.

The Esterbrook brand was resurrected a few years ago to the delight of many FP aficionados. I haven’t used one of the new pens so I cannot speak from experience. However, they do offer a Modern to Vintage nib adapter for combining a vintage Estie nib and feed with the modern pen body.

Think about that. A vintage Estie nib can be fitted to a newly manufactured pen body. My old nibs are begging to try out a posh, new home. One of these days…

Esterbrook fountain pen

writing sample

 

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Sunday Reads: Pens, Good Reads, And A Very Cool Cat

12/09/2018

A few tidbits for a busy Sunday…

 

 

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Sunday Reads: Pens, Memes, And Sherlock Holmes

11/18/2018

There is no connecting the dots between these links, except that they were some of the most interesting ones from this past week.

Noodler’s Standard Flex Pen With Apache Sunset Ink

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Nemosine Singularity On Sale

11/14/2018

Pen Chalet has the Nemosine Singularity on sale. Nemosine.com has them as well. If you’ve had an urge to try this model, grab it now. As they say, supplies are limited.

Links to a few of my posts about the Singularity:

Nemosine Singularity Stub – First Look

Nemosine Singularity Fountain Pens

Fountain Pens Are Cool

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Fountain Pens Are Cool

11/02/2018

Last week, HisNibs.com shared a link to a Bloomberg article about fountain pen ink that stated, “Worldwide, fountain pen sales are forecast to total $1.15 billion this year, up 3 percent from 2017 and almost 31 percent from a decade ago, according to market-research company Euromonitor International.” Yes, fountain pens are cool and so is ink.

An inkophile needs a stable of pens to test and compare several colors at the same time. A five-pen rotation works well for me and for a reasonable investment, these are some of my favorite models.

  • Pilot Metropolitan – My three are good writers, but might seem slender in a large hand.
  • Pilot Kakuno – Mine has a good nib and adds virtually no weight to my kit.
  • Platinum Plaisir – Good nibs and attractive colors. Slightly larger than the Metropolitan.
  • Kaweco Sport – Modern pocket pen works well in small spaces. Nibs can be swapped.
  • TWSBI Eco – Small nib and simple design, but folks swear by the Eco. The Diamond 580 is my preferred model.
  • Lamy Safari – Sturdy build, but the grip is awkward for some users. Nibs can be good if finicky about ink. The Studio is my preferred model for an everyday pen.
  • Nemosine Singularity – Good build for the price. My italics work best with well-lubricated inks.
  • Conklin Duragraph – The stub nibs are smooth and juicy. I liked the design and performance well enough to purchase two.

Although I have owned a few inexpensive Chinese pens that wrote well enough, most brands have been too inconsistent to recommend. However, for the modest investment, they could be worth the gamble. Amazon and eBay offer quite a few, but you might have better luck at His Nibs.

The Pilot Metropolitan has emerged as my favorite fountain pen for ink testing because it cleans easily and flows well with every ink. The Duragraph with its wide nib is good for general writing so it will often get filled with an ink I would use for a journal or correspondence. The Kakuno or the Singularity come out to play when aqua ink is on the menu. The Nova Orange Plaisir is happy with orange ink or sometimes a fill of Noodler’s Lexington Gray. Either way, it makes my desk look cheerful.

My current pen rotation for testing ink includes

  • Silver Pilot Metropolitan – green ink
  • Aqua Pilot Metropolitan, Kakuno, or Nemosine Singularity – blue/aqua ink
  • Plaisir – red/orange ink
  • TWSBI – purple/burgundy ink
  • Duragraph – black/brown ink

That makes five pens for under $150. Or a mix of Metropolitans and Plasirs could be put together for less than $75. Add a selection of ink samples and you are on your way to being a collector. Now wasn’t that easy!

Though I have never needed to make a return, do purchase where that would be easy. Low-end pens can be imperfect by some accounts though I suspect that is less common with the pens on my list.

Most of the links are to Amazon from which Inkophile receives a tiny commission when you buy within 24 hours of clicking the link. Thank you for your support.

 

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New Faves For 2016

12/18/2016

This past year I made some new friends. Links are to sources for the products.

Art Supplies

  • Silver Brush Black Velvet watercolor brushes – Acquired several this year. Supple, retain shape very well and hold lots of fluid.
  • Daniel Smith Prussian Blue and Transparent Red Oxide watercolors – Good additions to my transparent palette.
  • Aureolin by Winsor & Newton or Daniel Smith – Excellent yellow combined with Permanent Rose or Quinacridone Rose and Cobalt Blue for mixing a full range of colors. This has become my “Less Is More” triad and a staple for my mini kit. (h/t Pat Weaver)
  • Pentel Touch Brush Tip Felt Pen – Good at line variation whether for writing or drawing.
  • Uniball Air marker – More durable than a felt marker and glides effortlessly across the page. Makes my hand happy.
  • Buddha board – Great tool for practicing strokes without wasting ink, paint or paper.

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Platinum #3776 Century Nice And Nice Pur Fountain Pens

11/23/2014

Platinum makes excellent pens that easily rank amongst my favorites. Thanks to the generosity of Carol at Luxury Brands LLC, I now have the #3776 Century Nice (rose gold) and Nice Pur (rhodium) to enjoy and review. Note that I placed “enjoy” before “review” which says a lot.

Century Nice pens have an unusual design that reminds me of cut crystal. The resin is not smooth like my Chartres Blue, but has diamond cut stripes along the transparent barrel and cap. The section is smooth and fits comfortably in my hand. The threads line up under my thumb which might be a problem for some users. However, with my light grip, this went unnoticed.

#3776 Century pens are medium sized and do not require posting to be well balanced. They have the “Slip and Seal” mechanism that keeps ink fluid despite long lapses in use. There is a brochure in six languages that explains how it works as well as how to maintain it. Just for the record, the five Century pens I’ve taken for a spin have all worked perfectly right out of the box. None have required special care and all have performed as well as any pen in my collection.

Here is where the two pens differ. The Nice has rose gold trim and a 14kt rose gold nib. The Nice Pur has a 14 kt gold rhodium plated nib with rhodium trim. If you are hooked on matchy-matchy, the converter has stainless bits that suit the Pur, but are slightly at odds with the rose gold Nice. The light reflective nature of the barrel reduces the contrast so that the color difference is minimized.

Note that there is no discoloration of the rose gold nib, but there is a significant reflection in the photo. It really is rose gold as you can see in the other photos. The diamond cut stripes are about the width of a finger nail and very smooth which makes them light-reflective. It’s an attractive effect.

The Nice came with a medium nib, my first on a Platinum pen. It is a bit wider than expected with very good flow and is a real treat on Clairefontaine and Rhodia paper. It offers good control over letter shapes and I found it a fine complement to my natural letter forms. The broad nib on the Nice Pur is quite substantial and very wet. Both nibs work best with a light touch. Digging in too deeply will cause the them to become chatty. With light pressure neither nib produces feedback though with a heavy hand, the medium will give a hint of it. They don’t skate over paper, but do provide orientation.

The Nice filled with the aqua colored Waterman South Sea Blue is a delightful addition to the various tools on my desk, but it is lovely with burgundy, blue and some greens as well. Catching a glimpse of colorful ink gives a lift to any writing task so the Nice adds a little inspiration to my day.

The clear resin body combined with rhodium furnishings makes the Nice Pur a neutral colored pen except for the ink visible in the converter. For those who match ink to pen, this model presents no restrictions. The writing sample is Diamine Emerald though any ink will suit and that’s the ultimate in versatility.

Want a little attention for your refined and discerning taste in pens? Just place a Platinum Century Nice on your desk and watch the reactions. Even in my fountain pen friendly family, these pens earned an unusual measure of comment and admiration. Pretty cool, eh?

(The Platinum #3776 Century Nice is PNB-20000R #5 ROSE and the Platinum #3776 Century Nice Pur is PNB-20000R #4 PUR just in case you want to order one from your favorite retailer.)

 

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