I filled one of my favorite fountain pens, the Visconti Homo Sapien Bronze Age with an extra fine nib, with Monteverde Burgundy back on February 12th and wrote it dry on April 5th. I’m a little slow getting these notes out even though there’s not much to say.
The ink & pen both performed nicely. This is Monteverde’s older Burgundy ink, now replaced by Napa Burgundy. I like the color of Napa Burgundy a little better, but the performance is similar. The flow was good and problem free. Dry time was on the long side of normal for most inks, meaning it was a little slow for my taste and I did have a few accidental smudges. But it wasn’t a bad experience and I wouldn’t avoid using this ink in the future, although not in a wide or free-flowing nib. The color is a little muted, which I sometimes like, and sometimes don’t.
The inked cleaned as well as any other ink from this Visconti. It’s a tedious process. Plus, ink has a tendency to collect where the feed meets the section. Normal flushing doesn’t clear this ink and I admit to letting it build up a bit and only dealing with in every two or three cleanings. It was time. This process has me hold the nib/section in the ultrasonic cleaner. Then fill the pen with water, wrap the nib in tissue and put it in a tall shot glass to wick the ink out overnight. This time around I repeated the process a couple more times. I can’t clam complete success since there’s was still ink on the tissue even after the third time. But I decided it was enough since the water was clear when it came out of the pen and I use safe, pen friendly inks in this pen. The Visconti Homo Sapien material likes to soak in the ink.
Normally the Visconti Homo Sapien would already be back in the rotation, but I want to write a couple more pens dry. While I won’t avoid the Monteverde Burgundy in the future, nothing about the ink makes me eager to pick it over other inks.
It’s been a bad few weeks for me and my vintage Sheaffer Balance Oversize fountain pens. First my pearl grey Oversize wouldn’t fill, probably a pinhole in the sac. At least that’s within my ability to fix, as long as I don’t crack the pen removing the sac. But then things went downhill fast at the end of March. I inked up my Marine Green Balance Oversize and had been using is sporadically during the month. While nice, the big stub isn’t suited to my writing style so I just used it when I wanted a little variation. Plus it’s a gorgeous pen. Unfortunately when I went to pick it up the other day the cap came off and the pen stayed behind. I soon saw it wasn’t because the cap was simply loose, but it had sheared off above the cap band.
I can’t say I know how it happened. Because the pen isn’t suited to me it doesn’t travel out of the house. There isn’t any point since it’s extremely unlikely I’d use it. It lived in my Visconti 3-Pen Case most of the time where it’s well protected, or occasionally in a Dudek Modern Goods pen stand where it’s stored cap up, and the cap is completely above the stand.
I suppose I could have hit the pen and not noticed, but this seems unlikely. What I have noticed is that when I pick up a pen to use and twist the cap off (or on) I usually twist it from the top. I imagine this puts some stress on the cap as I twist it. So I’ll be changing my habit and start twisting the cap from down at it’s base by the cap band.
This damage is well beyond my ability to fix, and I may eventually see if I can send it off to be repaired. I’m conflicted about that decision. The pen is gorgeous, one of my favorites based strictly on looks. Yet, the nib just isn’t well suited to my writing style so I don’t use the pen very much.
The Sheaffer Balance Oversize was inked with Diamine 150th Anniversary Terracotta. I liked the ink and the wide stub nib provided some subtle shading.
Krys has been writing the Squishy-Ink blog since last year. While not exclusively ink reviews there’s a constant flow of them along with great, colorful photography. I’ve linked to it’s posts more than once and if you’ve never visited the site head on over there now.
She recently launched a Kickstarter for a hardcover notebook with 68GSM Tomoe River paper. It’s worth noting that 68GSM is slightly thicker than the more common 52GSM paper. I do have a notebook with 68GSM paper and it is still thin paper, just not as thin as the paper in my Seven Seas Writer, Crossfield or Hobonichi Techo. I’ve yet to actually use the 68GSM paper so I can’t speak to its properties. This will make the it thicker than the 480 pages in the Seven Seas Notebooks. I suspect the difference will be noticeable. (It’s described as 500 pages, this could mean 250 double-sided sheets but from the photos I’m guessing it’s 500 sheets.)
The notebook is called pocket A5 sized because it is a little shorter than A5 sized. There’s also a exclusive Robert Oster ink (after all, it’s from Squishy Ink) available as a reward called Hippo Purple.
The project has already burst through it’s goal, so it will happen. They’ve also reached all four stretch goals. There’s still a few days left to get early bird reward pricing and the campaign closes April 23rd.
I did back the project (notebook & ink), but it is Kickstarter so I feel compelled to mention there’s a risk especially since it’s her first project. In this case I’d guess the ship date (July 2017) is a bit too aggressive and I won’t see the rewards until after that. That said, I’ve no doubt they notebook and ink will be delivered soon after that and be of good quality.
It’s been a hectic month so I won’t be writing much about the pens I used but I did want to post my currently inked pens. The Visconti Brunelleschi is a new pen and I’m liking it a lot so far, although it’s still on its first fill. I hope to have a first impressions post up soon.
As usual, the photos are in the same order as the writing samples.