Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – July 29, 2018

Franklin-Christoph Model 20 Vintage Green with medium stub nib

Even though four fountain pens went dry during the last two weeks, my fountain pen usage was just the usual lists and notes. The Waterman Edson and the Visconti Brunelleschi were dry when I picked them up to use them this week. While they were used since being inked in April, I suspect more ink ended up in the air than on paper. The Pilot Vanishing Point with an XXXF nib and black ink saw plenty of use before it was finally written dry, so very little of its ink escaped into the air.

The fourth pen was a different story. The Franklin-Christoph Model 20 with its medium stub nib didn’t evaporate all its ink or put it on paper. Instead, it leaked into the cap. Not all the ink, but enough to make a real mess. This leaking has been an ongoing problem with this pen, so it’s time I tackle the problem.

I have a second Model 20 which doesn’t leak at all. So it’s not something in the design, such as the recessed nib collecting ink. The nib unit sits deep in the section, so there’s a lib around the nib that could collect ink. I make sure ink isn’t pooled up there after filling the pen. I can see missing it once, but not regularly on this pen and never on the other Model 20. And not consistently so much ink.

I’ll try a few things before I send the pen off to Franklin-Christoph. I already took the pen apart, made sure there wasn’t any apparent damage (such as cracks) and then filled it up again. This time I filled the converter directly, not through the feed. We’ll see what happens.

I refilled the Model 20 with Montblanc Psychedelic Purple (Beatles) ink because it was at hand and I like the ink. The pen hasn’t leaked yet, but it’s always been at least a couple of days before it leaks (another strike against it being ink collecting in the lip while filling).

Pen Zero. – Leigh Reyes. My Life As a Verb.

Nakaya Pen Clinic – 2018 — Alt. Haven

Aesthetic Bay Nakaya Clinic: Day 1 – Hand Over That Pen

Review: M815 Metal Striped (2018) « The Pelikan’s Perch

Some early thoughts on the Pelikan M120 special edition, green and black fountain pen. | Fountain pen blog

Travelling with ink: pen shopping in Lake Garda. | Fountain pen blog
Unexpected Discoveries | Slightly unnerved

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – July 15, 2018

I seem to be settling into a fortnightly schedule for these trail logs. With it being summer, along with my boringly standard fountain pen usage, there’s not much to write about every week. Every time these weekly posts stop being weekly I tell myself I’ll use the time to write more reviews. We’ll see how that goes this time.

My fountain pen usage continues to be low. The typical lists and notes.

I gave my Pilot Vanishing Point, with its medium left oblique nib and Aurora Blue-Black ink an early flush. The pen was a hard starter every time I picked it up, and it never wrote well. One pen is not enough to declare an ink good or bad, but I’m not in any hurry to use Aurora Blue-Black again. Other inks flowed better in XF/F nibs than this ink did with the medium nib.

My favorite and most used pen of the past two weeks was the Edison Menlo with and extra fine nib and Athena Sepia ink. When I wanted something different I reached for the Sailor Pro Gear King of Pen with a medium nib and Papier Plum Burgundy ink. Both pens are nearing empty. I plan to refill the Menlo since that’s so much easier than cleaning the pump filler, while the KOP with will probably get a break so other pens get a chance.

photo of the Edison Menlo Pump Filler
Edison Menlo Pump Filler

iPhone X vs Pixel 2 XL review: which takes better pictures for pen people? – Leigh Reyes. My Life As a Verb. // I’ve been using the Pixel 2 (non-XL) for some pen photos and have been pleased with the results.

June 2018 Pen & Ink Pairing – Hand Over That Pen

St. Louis Pen Show Recap – The Well-Appointed Desk

Ten Years Old And Still Going Strong | An Inkophile’s Blog // Congratulation!

It’s the pens, not the destination – Leigh Reyes. My Life As a Verb.

Crónicas Estilográficas: A Collection?


Letter Writing Club – Thursday, July 12 – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

Why Collect Pens? | Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Mark Twain Goes Postal: Great Courant Letters – Hartford Courant // Two things struck me when reading these: 1. Only 72 words in a page? 2. He would absolutely lose his mind over zip+4 (unless it replaced the rest of the address).

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – July 1, 2018

Retro 51 System with packaging
Retro 51 System with packaging

My nineteenth Retro 51 rollerball arrived recently, Mike Dudek’s The System. It’s my third space themed Retro 51. There’s still one empty slot in my Retro 51 pen case. Of course, I always have at least two pens out, and in use, so I have a ready-made excuse to add a few more.


The pen has a lot of black, which certainly makes sense for this design. While I usually like black pens, the addition of the color is less pleasing to my eye. While I love the theme and the design, it doesn’t grab my attention aesthetically. And poor Pluto, it’s either being dissed by being all out on its own with no orbit shown (although showing it’s orbit would have screwed with the design). A more positive view would be that it’s being elevated above the others as the only named planet.

The separated AL Sport
The separated AL Sport

One pen was emptied this week, but this was more due to evaporation than use. It was my Kaweco AL Sport (Raw Aluminum). It recently developed the habit of unscrewing as it travels in my pocket. The pen has stayed in the cap as it travels, although the cap remains in my pocket when I remove the pen. The last time the section also unscrewed from the barrel and remained in the cap, which had also become unscrewed, being removed in three pieces and requiring assembly before use. So far no ink stains, but it’s finished as a trouser pocket pen.

My fountain pen usage continued to be low. I use them mostly for lists and notes. It’s safe to say I use them daily, just not very much. I did start journalling again as June began, but that’s been inconsistent, about 14 A5 pages in all of June.

Two Retro 51 pens themed for summer
Two Retro 51 pens themed for summer

Since the 4th of July Holiday is approaching (Independence Day here in the U.S.) I pulled out the Betsy Ross Retro 51 to join the Play Ball.

The System Tornado Rollerballs // The Clicky Post There will be one more round, along with a new pencil.

Lunar Orbiter Image Recovery Project (LOIRP) Overview // NASA

(via Liftoff Podcast) Off topic, but keeping with the space theme, NASA released some images originally taken to plan the first moon landing. When initially released in the 60’s they were down-res’d to hide the capabilities of the cameras. Several have now been recovered from the original tape drives in their full resolution glory. All are black and white. Warning: Huge Files, JPG files exceed 25MB each and TIF files exceed 500MB each.

My Ultra Black Montblanc M Ballpoint – Pete Denison

Triangle Pen Show Write-Up! And bonus road trip! – SquishyInk

Field Notes: Three Missions // This continues today’s unofficial theme. I love this design, but I’m going to try and take a pass. I don’t use the pocket notebooks that I have, and this one is grid-ruled, which is my least favorite. I’ll see if I can hold out until it’s sold out.

Inky Pursuits: a recent round-up. | Fountain pen blog

The Silver Arrow | Goodwriterspens’s Blog