Posts Tagged ‘Fountain Pens’

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Are You A Pen Collector?

07/07/2022

What prompts you to purchase yet another pen? That’s a legitimate question that I examined recently as my online wanderings took me into learning about a line of pens about which I knew nothing. For a few hours, it seemed that a new pen was in my immediate future. Eventually, it struck me as it has many times before, that I did not need another pen. There are pens in my collection that I love but purchases that have thrilled me have been rare. Hey, I can only write with one at a time so why have a hundred of them and want even more?

I grew up in the home of collectors who loved the thrill of the hunt and the satisfaction of bagging anything from fine paintings to tchotchkes. With the exception of a dozen art books, I did not own multiples of anything until I discovered the ease with which a collection could be amassed buying stuff on eBay. From then on, I was doomed.

Using a fountain pen daily prompted me to upgrade from an uninspired modern pen to a vintage Parker ’51’ aerometric with a medium-fine nib. After that I was hooked. When at work, an Esterbrook in a pen holder on my desk was my weapon of choice. When writing for pleasure, either the ’51’ or an even older Vacumatic helped me fill page after page in journals. But why acquire a hundred more? I’ve sold at least fifty to get down to that hundred and that is crazy. True, many were gifts or the spoils from writing reviews. Thus my investment is nowhere near what it could have been. However, storage space is at a premium here and yet my collection grows.

Are you a collector? What makes fountain pens such an easy target of affection?

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On My Desk 5-2022

05/27/2022

On my desk today are two fountain pens, two gel pens, one mechanical pencil and various other tools. It isn’t exactly a lean kit, but neither is it excessive. The A5 journal is one of four currently in use. The others include an A6 loose leaf, a Traveler’s 019, and a Traveler’s 013. A large box of washi tape is always nearby.

Which tools have the honor of gracing your desk at the moment?

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Favorite Pens And Inks Updated

05/24/2022

Today I updated my lists of favorite pens, inks and paper plus some of the best combinations I have used. Some items are vintage and others have been discontinued so you might not find them at your local retailer.

What are some of your favorites? Is your list subject to frequent changes or is it stable?

Favorite Fountain Pens

Favorite Inks

Favorite Paper

Favorite Matches

 

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Inkquiring Minds: TWSBI Declares WAR on Moonman and Narwhal

05/17/2022

Are you interested in a pen world controversy? This excellent video lays it out nicely and some of the comments add to the tale. If nothing else, it is a distraction from world events and the political posturing the media serves us.

Full disclosure: I am months into writing an extensive review of converter pens offered by Moonman, Delike and Majohn. A Delike New Moon 2 fude has been my #1 pen for over a year while the TWSBI 580 hasn’t been filled once. The Delike is a better fit in my hand, is very attractive and its nib is perfect for my journal paper and line-spacing. It’s my if-you-could-only-choose-one pen.

Knockoffs are a frustrating and regrettable hazard these days and certainly China is the worst offender. TWSBI considers Moonman and others to be selling copies of some of their models. Basically, TWSBI has told retailers if they sell Moonman and related pens, they can no longer sell TWSBIs. If TWSBI had a patent on their piston-filler mechanism, I would support enforcing it, but they don’t. If they haven’t filed for one, why not?

Business is business you say? Well, I don’t have to give TWSBI my business or anyone else for that matter. Make a good product and offer it at a fair, dollar-for-value price, and people will come. That’s the best way to beat the competition.

Delike New Moon 2 with a fine fude nib.

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Noodler’s And The Pen Community

05/12/2022

A few folks have gotten their knickers in a twist over pen and ink names. As a result, Noodler’s has changed the names of a number of products. Other manufacturers have given inks new names over the years ostensibly for marketing reasons though apparently the underlying formulas remained unchanged. To be accurate at representation, my policy has been to use the name on the bottle and that will continue. If I ever restock a bottle with a new name, I will make the switch but who uses up Noodler’s ink? Those bottles are huge!

For reference:

Previous Name


Noodler’s Ink

New Name

19010 Kiowa Pecan Pecan
19022 Apache Sunset Southwest Sunset
19028 Ottoman Rose Rose in the Louvre
19029 Navajo Turquoise Mesa Turquoise
19034 Tiananmen Discontinued
19035 Ottoman Azure Azure
19036 Shah’s Rose Pearl Diver Coral
19066 Bernanke Black Brevity Black
19067 Bernanke Blue Brevity Blue
19069 Rome Burning Rome (one antique coin)
19070 Q-E’ternity ($&¢) Brevity Blue-Black
19074 Park Red Discontinued
19085 House Divided Discontinued
19103 Anti-Fascist Blue (X-Feather Blue) X-Feather Blue
19104 Noodler’s 1984 Ink Discontinued
19105 Censor Red Brevity Red
19810 Nikita 4.5 oz w/Free Pen TBD
19814 Dragons Napalm 4.5 oz Free Pen Dragon’s Fire
Noodler’s Fountain Pens
14045 Apache Tortoise Konrad Flex Mesa Tortoise
15045 Apache Tortoise Ahab Mesa Tortoise
15048 Cherokee Pearl Ahab Oklahoma
15049 Comanche Ahab Brazos River
15051 Black Crow Ahab Raven
15054 Huron Ahab Lake Champlain
15055 Iroquois Ahab Lake Erie
15060 Navajo Turquoise Ahab Mesa Turquoise
15063 Pima Tortoise Ahab Canyon Tortoise
15066 Zuni Ahab Wilderness twilight
Standard Flex Nibs
17066 Zuni Std Flex Wilderness Twilight
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Matchy-Matchy In Pink

05/11/2022

Last week I ordered a replacement for a favorite ink along with a pen for a comparison review from Jet Pens. It turns out they are perfectly suited for each other in a matchy-matchy way. Sometimes you just get lucky.

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Do Your Pens Make You Want To Write?

08/31/2021

Do your pens encourage you to write? In the past few months, old favorites as well as a few pens that never received much love got together and invaded my rotation. The final group is a bit different from my usual selection and I am now using several pens that were set aside long ago.

For years stubs and italics with a few exceptions were all I used. No fine or extra-fine nibs suited either my grip or my letter forms. That wasn’t a problem since my writing looked fine and the range of inks I was drawn to were lovely with those pens.

Then I decided to write notes for projects as well as personal musings in a journal, but which one to use?

A Traveler’s Notebook #013 with unlined Tomoe River Paper looked like a suitable size for my needs. So I popped the wrapper off of one, grabbed a 1.1mm stub with vivid ink, wrote a page and was affronted by the result. The journal size and the paper quality were fine but the writing overwhelmed them. It was simply too large and too dark. At the end of the day when I want to capture thoughts on the day’s accomplishments and make notes for future endeavors, something calming and relaxing is in order. In addition, I wanted to use both sides of the paper with a lined guide tucked beneath to keep my writing on the straight and narrow. To do this would require a finer nib and less intense ink. To the pen drawer I went.

Pens from my early days have very fine Japanese nibs, especially Pilot pocket pens and various 1970’s Platinum pens. The more recently acquired Pilot Metropolitans are also fairly narrow. In the western fine nib category, several Levenger True Writers were promising. A Delike New Moon fine fude received a test run as well.

Inks that were certain to be appropriate included several from Herbin, Iroshizuku and Sailor. Diamine had a lock on the brown range with Dark Brown and Raw Sienna. Lots of trial and error and attendant pen cleaning produced a pleasing rotation even if the pens are unusually narrow for me. What counts the most is whether they encourage writing and these are doing just that.

Do you think my wide nibs are jealous from having to cede part of my rotation to their skinny brethren? In truth, there are more inked pens on my desk than in recent memory. So much for my vow to maintain a minimalist rotation. The pens are winning. Who am I to disagree?

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