Ink & Pen Notes: Sheaffer Balance Aspen and Montblanc Permanent Grey

Sheaffer Balance Aspen LE medium nib with Montblanc Permanent Grey ink bottle

I’ve written about this pen and ink combination before. It’s been in use since September 27th of last year. I simply refilled whenever the Sheaffer Balance Aspen went dry. I must be getting bored with the combo because this last fill was way back on February 28th. Over four months for one converter fill is insanely long.

During that time I did use the pen. I never had any hard starts or flow problems. I’m sure there was evaporation but it wasn’t noticeable I I did write the pen dry rather than evaporate it dry.

The Sheaffer Balance Aspen is on top of my Favorite 5 Modern Fountain Pens list and Montblanc Permanent Gray is third on my Favorite 5 Inks list. So it’s no surprise I really love this combination, even if recent actions do indicate boredom with the combination.

The pen is extremely comfortable to write with, a perfect size for my hand. Because it had flow problems when I got it (a problem common to the initial manufacturing of this pen) the nib and feed were tuned by Mike Masuyama so the flow is great. It’s officially a medium nib but it’s more like a medium-fine nib so it’s in my comfort zone.

It’s not a pen I use for notes, marking up documents, or quick writing but when I’m using it for longer writing sessions I don’t want to stop. This usage works well with the ink which isn’t fast drying so prone to careless smudges. The nib is just wide enough to start showing off the saturation and shading of the ink. Plus, I love the look of the nib, not to mention the pen.

It is time for a break so the pen will spend some time in the pen case. I haven’t decided what to ink up to replace it. My two newest pens will be getting a lot of use so I don’t need to ink anything up right away, but I’m down to only six inked pens and that includes a dip pen.