Ink & Pen Notes: Sheaffer Balance Oversize and Montblanc Irish Green

Sheaffer Balance Oversize Broad Stub with Montblanc Irish Green bottle

I was expecting to start this article off by saying my vintage (c.1935) Sheaffer Balance Oversize with its stub nib is among my favorites, especially with Montblanc Irish Green ink. Then I was going to point you to a recent ink & pen notes and call it a day. While it’s true that I frequently pair this pen & ink, I don’t have any recent notes and it appears that this is the first time I’ve inked the pen all year. I guess I lost track of time, while I’ve been ignoring my vintage pens lately this is the one that always jumps to the front of the line when I look for one to ink up.

I filled the Sheaffer Balance Oversize with Montblanc Irish Green back on August 20th. It seems fitting that a past favorite vintage pen (well, second on the list) be paired with my favorite green ink. The pen holds a lot of ink, but the wide nib puts down a lot of ink. So while I love the Marine Green color and the pen fits my hand well it still took me over seven weeks to write the pen dry. This betrays the fact that I don’t use the pen very often.

The wide stub nib is wider than I prefer although I truly enjoy writing with it. I use it for longer writing sessions when I can slow down and enjoy the nib. The fountain pen doesn’t come close to suiting me for note taking, which is what I do the most with my fountain pens. Even much of my long form writing, such as article drafts, often isn’t suitable either since I don’t pay too much attention to my writing form and my natural writing is too small for the nib. All this explains why it took so long to write dry.

This time around it seemed to take longer than usual to flush all traces of the Irish Green from the Sheaffer Balance. Cleaning lever fillers, or any sac fountain pen, is always tedious, but this time around it seemed like I’d never get all the green out. Eventually I did, or at least enough to satisfy me.

I haven’t been inking up my vintage pens very much lately, but the Marine Green celluloid of the Sheaffer Balance Oversize makes it stand out when I open my case of vintage fountain pens. So there’s little doubt that the c.1935 Sheaffer Balance Oversize will be back in the rotation, and it will probably be with Montblanc Irish Green. But for now it’s back in the case.