Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – November 1, 2020

Photo of my two newest pens
My latest arrivals

There’s no favorite pen this week. My fountain pen usage couldn’t get much lower compared to the previous week, so relatively speaking my fountain pen usage was up this week. I didn’t have a lot of “normal” writing to do, so most of it was just an excuse to use my pens. I picked a different pen each time I sat down to write.

Friday brought a significant snowfall. (Significant has a different definition than it will in December) According to those who claim to know, it was only the sixth time October brought a “measurable” snowfall to central Connecticut in the past 115 years. While annoying, there was a positive side – the first snowfall of the season usually brings widespread traffic accidents, but I didn’t hear or read about any this time. Even after the overnight freeze. Is 2020 looking up?

I caved in and ordered a new fountain pen. It wasn’t one that was already on my watch list. The Sailor Pro Gear Racing Green, a Goldspot pens exclusive, crossed in front of my eyes and it was an instant “I want it”, but I held off. (A King of Pen) version would have been an insta-buy. The price put me off ($312) because I thought it was a premium price. But further research taught me that $312 is the new U.S. price for Pro Gears. So this wasn’t a premium or limited edition price. That doesn’t make it any easier on the wallet, but it meant I wouldn’t do better on a different new Pro Gear. That would have mattered if I was shopping for a Pro Gear, but I wasn’t.

Then I inked up my current Pro Gear Regency Stripe to try it out, since the Pro Gear is a relatively small pen for me. It was comfortable to write with, which I already knew since it has been inked-up on a regular basis. It did help me make my nib choice. I had been considering a medium or broad nib that I could then have ground to something more exotic. But after using it, I decided that I would be more comfortable with a thinner, traditional round nib. So I went with a medium fine. I have that nib on my Sailor Realo and like it. I didn’t want a second Pro Gear with an extra-fine nib.

I also ordered the new Anderson Pens exclusive Retro 51 Palmer. I skipped the in-stock notification, and planned to skip this release, along with any other Retro 51 releases before they shut down. Then I saw the pen and was hooked. It’s a brass pen with an acid edged design based on the Peacock Doors used in their Chicago store location (in The Palmer Hilton).

I ordered both pens on Thursday and USPS shocked me by delivering both on Saturday, beating their own original ETA. Another sign that 2020 is looking up?

Current Reads, Watches & Listens

Listening: 1861: The Civil War Awakening by Adam Goodheart (audiobook)

New Arrivals

As mentioned above:
1. Sailor Pro Gear Racing Green (Goldspot pens exclusive)
2. Retro 51 Palmer (Anderson Pens exclusive)





Written Dry

  1. Sheaffer Balance II (Crimson Glow) ran out of Sheaffer Red ink.

Newly Inked

  1. Penlux Masterpiece Grande (F) with #09 P.W. Akkerman Dutch Masters Steenrood “Red Stone” van Vermeer. My new Esterbrook Estie OS has me reconsidering the role of this pen in my rotation. So, I inked it up. I also felt oddly compelled to use every character in what may be the longest ink name among inks that I have (65 characters).
  2. Sailor Pro Gear Regency Stripe (EF) with a Sailor Shikiori Yamadori cartridge. I inked this one up to re-familiarize myself with the pen before ordering another Sailor Pro Gear.
  3. Sailor Pro Gear Racing Green (M-F) with Montblanc Racing Green. An old, no longer made ink, which is down to my last bottle.

For the Retro 51 Palmer, I swapped the stock refill for a 81265 Schmidt refill, black & thinner at 0.6mm.

Vintage Pen News: Inks for vintage pens

Swan Leverless L245B/62 – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Kingdom Note: A virtual tour – Tokyo Station Pens

Crónicas Estilográficas: Le charme discret

The Pocket Pen Roundup! | Inkdependence! (video)

The pens of October 29th, 2020 – Everyday Scrawl

The cheap pen that changed writing forever – BBC Future

Mabie Todd Swan Visofil VT340/76 – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Why I Love Leuchtturm – Chicana Writes

Useful Journaling Issue 1 | Comfortable Shoes Studio

Building an interesting pen collection without breaking the bank | UK fountain pens

Classic Pens’ Collision With Pelikan: A Look At The CP6 Goethe Pens « The Pelikan’s Perch

Flow | From the Pen Cup


Rediscovering “Columbo” in 2020 | The New Yorker // I came across some 70’s cop shows and watched a couple. Good for nostalgia and a reminder of how formulaic cop shows were, but no chance of regular viewing. Then I dug out my Columbo’s and started watching them. Another 70’s cop show, but anything but formulaic. I enjoyed them back then as part of a rotating set of mystery movies (if memory serves). I ignored the others in the rotation and only watched Columbo. And since the killer was always known up front, rewatching them is just as enjoyable.

Neither Trump Nor Biden Drink Alcohol – The New York Times // One area where Biden & Trump agree.

Sean Connery: James Bond actor dies aged 90 – BBC News // I’m slowly working my way through the Bond films and his final Eon Productions Bond film is next on my list. I also enjoyed him in several other films.

For those of us in the U.S., the clocks rolled back overnight (I hope you’re not late) and Tuesday is the day to vote. I live in a state that doesn’t do early voting and I procrastinated requesting my mail in ballot, so I’ll be up early and in line.

Go vote