Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – November 11, 2018

My fountain pens did get a lot of use these past two weeks, although it did taper-off a bit in the last week. I was down to four inked pens, one was a little-used broad nib, and two were hard to travel large clip-less pens, so it was time to ink some up. I brought the total to an even dozen.

My typically problem free Franklin-Christoph Model 66 was starting to stain my fingers on a regular basis. It’s eye-dropper filled, and I must have been a little hasty when applying the silicone grease. There wasn’t too much ink left, so I decided to just dump the ink and clean the pen.

photo of the Franklin-Christoph Model 66 Stabilis Fountain Pen

Franklin-Christoph Model 66 Stabilis Fountain Pen

Links

Crónicas Estilográficas: Datation of Japanese Pens. VII. Sailor’s Nibs (II)

MANILA FOUNTAIN PEN SHOW 2018 | Personal Geographic

Artus Spezial – Inktronics

Further Thoughts on (Very) Inexpensive Fountain Pens — The Gentleman Stationer

The Saturday Pen Addict & Well-Appointed Desk Meet-Up Review – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

How to keep Analog Alive in the Edit Mines — The Pen Addict

Newton Pen News, Raffles, and whatever else I can think of – Newton Pens

Bad Practice – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

LAMY in NYC: A Visit In Which Some Secrets Are Revealed | From the Pen Cup

FPD // Fountain Pen Day 2018! | Weirdoforest Pens

Scriptus Pen Show Madness – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

Pen Review: The Esterbrook “Estie” — The Gentleman Stationer

A Tale of Three Planners – The Well-Appointed Desk

NYC Trip Recap: Big Apple Pen Club, CW Pencils, & More! — The Gentleman Stationer

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FPQuest Trail Log – October 28, 2018

Retron 51 Play Ball penThe last two weeks have seen some heavy fountain pen usage, and heavier than normal Retro 51 rollerball usage. I wrote four fountain pens dry during the past two weeks. I’ve been consistently writing every day. As I mentioned in a previous Trail Log, I’ve been trying to use my pens every day, even if it’s a waste of ink & paper and immediately goes into the trash. I find it relaxing to just write and not have to write anything specific. I still write the occasional journal entry and for the usual notes. But my end of day routine now includes some relaxing writing. I did miss two days these past two weeks. Both were late days where I was exhausted when I got home. So no guilt. And on both of those days, my pens were used more than usual during the day. I lost track of how many pages I wrote during that World Series Game 3 marathon during which I finished off a 3/4 full Sailor KOP and used my Baseball themed Retro 51 (Play Ball) for what may be the last time of the year. Just one more win needed for the perfect season ending.

Pens that went dry:

TWSBI Go Smoke (extra fine) with Monteverde Emotions Passion Burgundy ink: I really, really liked this pen and the ink. The nib is a smooth writer and feels good in my hand.

Fisher of Pens Hermes (fine) with Iroshizuku Shin-Ryoku:  This pen has gotten better with age and use.

Esterbrook Estie (Esterbrook #9550 Firm Extra Fine) with Sheaffer Red ink:  I’d say the experience was OK. I did have some flow issues and hard starts. I’ve yet to review this pen. It’s been a less than optimum experience with the MV adapter for Esterbrook nibs, so I’ve been doing some comparisons with Esterbrook J pens using the same ink and nibs.

Sailor Pro Gear King of Pen (medium) with a Sailor Sei-Boku Pigmented Blue-Black cartridge:  Sublime. I used this throughout that WS Game 3 marathon which killed off the cartridge and well over a dozen pages. No skipping (until it went dry) and no fatigue in my hand.

Links

Pelikan’s M620 City Series (2001-2006) « The Pelikan’s Perch

Ball // Some thoughts on ballpoint pens | Weirdoforest Pens

Initial thoughts – my first Pelikan | Slightly unnerved

The Postman’s Knock Modern Calligraphy eCourse: A Review — The Pen Addict

My haul from the London Pen Show, 2018. | Fountain pen blog

FPQuest Trail Log – October 14, 2018

My fountain pen usage jumped in the past week. Rather than trying to write something specific, like a journal entry, I made it a point to write 15 minutes a night. As is the case for most things (at least for me), getting started is the hard part. Fifteen minutes is so daunting as to provide an excuse not to start. Typically, once I start I easily exceed 15 minutes. It also helped that I watched the Red Sox beat the Yankees a few nights. Unlike past attempts at forming a habit, the lack of an alternative motive such as journalling avoids the “I don’t feel like it” excuses.” More often than not the paper ended up in the garbage when I was done. I also had a slight increase in my fountain pen usage for my regular daily-to-day work.

Esterbrook Estie with #9550 nib Estie with #9550 nib

I wrote one pen dry and did it twice. My new Esterbrook Estie was written dry with the JoWo fine stock nib and Sheaffer Red ink. Then I switched to Esterbrook nibs. After some struggles, I settled on a vintage Esterbrook #9460 rigid medium nib. Performance of thinner nibs in the MV adapter was abysmal. I stayed with Sheaffer Red ink and also wrote it dry. I’m back to a thinner #9550 Firm Extra FIne nib. After some tweaking, the performance doesn’t sink to the level of abysmal, but it’s far below the performance in a Vintage Esterbrook J pen with the same nib, ink & paper.

Housekeeping: Long ago I experimented with subscribing to blogs via email rather than RSS. It was a failure; I’m an RSS guy. I’m only now getting around to unsubscribing from the emails. If you happened to notice that I unsubscribed to email, I do still read, just via RSS.

Links

My Sketching Update — The Finer Point

canetas e coisas: AURORA

12 Artists and How They Use Fountain Pens – Goulet Pens Blog

Crónicas Estilográficas: Tokyo International Pen Show 2018. A Stationery Salon

A Peek at the Pen Cup: Mean, Green, Certainly Not Lean – Fountain Pen Follies

Dallas Pen Show – Auctions – Scholarship Updates – – Newton Pens – Since 2012

Benu Chameleon Fountain Pen Review – Pens! Paper! Pencils!

My Supply Room: Dallas Pen Show 2018

Crónicas Estilográficas: The Case of Naginata. I. The Press Release

Fountain Pen Network Philippines Hosts First Manila Fountain Pen Show | Rants of The Archer

Pen of the Day: Nakaya Piccolo in Polished Shu with Nick Stewart Randal Ink – Fountain Pen Follies

News: Pelikan Raises U.S. Prices « The Pelikan’s Perch

Some early thoughts on the Parker Duofold International Big Red fountain pen. | Fountain pen blog

Mid-Week Mini: Inktober Progress so far… — The Finer Point

New Stamps and Letter Writing Club – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

My Supply Room: Pens From The Pen Show

Senator Windsor – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Five Months: an Extended Test of Platinum Carbon Black Pigment Ink – Fountain Pen Follies

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – September 30, 2018

My fountain pen usage continues to be what I consider average for me. I keep trying to get back into the journaling habit but continue to fail. Actually, I’ve fallen out of several habits lately, but that’s a different story.

No pens went dry the past two weeks, and there was one new arrival which was immediately inked up. My most used pen was the Fisher of Pens Hermes, although I did try to give the other seven inked pens a chance.

The new fountain pen is the Esterbrook Estie with the optional MV adapter for Esterbrook nibs. The pen arrived Thursday afternoon, so I haven’t had much time with it. My first impressions are mixed. I’ll try to pull my thoughts together for a This Just In post later in the week.

Esterbrook Estie - in box

##Links

Hobonichi Techo Planner A6 | The Passionate Penman

Some silly mistakes with the Faber-Castell Basic (black carbon) and how to avoid them. | Fountain pen blog

A NEW future for fountain pen inks – FOUNTAIN PEN INKS AND BLEACH

What’s in My Pen Roll: Fall Currently Inked – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

How to Get Started with Daily Journaling – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

Thread by @Miridunn: “ATTENTION FRIENDS: Since Mom died this past Spring, my 92 YO dad waits for mail every day. Listens for the squeak of the mail slot opening. […]”

Platinum 3776 Revisited: My Thoughts 2+ Years Later — The Gentleman Stationer

Pelikan Hubs 2018, the Year of Pelikan Edelstein Olivine – Page 2 – Fountain Pen Follies

Which Is The Best Pen? – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Pennaquod : Pen Blog Searcher // I’ve linked to this before, but it’s time for a reminder of this excellent service.

 

A Medium Bias

Favorite Medium Nibs (L-R Aurora Optima, Visconti Brunelleschi, Sailor KOP, MB Ultra Black (OM)

My fondness for thin nibs is not a secret. But, there was a long period where I was actively anti-medium. For example, if I wanted a different nib for the sake of variety, I’d go for a broad nib over a medium, even though a medium would be closer to my preference.

I have no doubt that this cost me money. Most of these broad nibs were rarely used and were sold or ground into something else (usually thinner). I continued this anti-medium bias, picking a broad nib for variety even though I knew I wouldn’t use it enough.

My first fountain pens were medium nibs because that was the only option I saw on the shelves, and I didn’t know any better. After discovering, and falling in love with thin nibs, I began to view medium nibs as a compromise that was forced upon me, and I resented them. One feature of a compromise is that it has something everyone can hate, so anti-medium became even more ingrained than it should have.

In late 2015 my anti-medium attitude began to dissipate. I bought the Cherry Bamboo Vanishing Point with a medium nib, although I did have it ground to a left oblique. Not a dull compromise medium, but a medium none the less. And I liked the nib. Later that year I picked up boring medium nib on a Franklin-Christoph Model 20 and liked it. I did consider a broad, or another style nib, but I finally accepted I wouldn’t use something wider than a medium.

The in 2016 all my bias melted away. I purchased seven pens with nibs, of which five were mediums, and a sixth was a medium oblique. This was the year I also bought the Sailor King of Pen, which has a medium as the thinness nib option. I knew the Sailor bespoke nibs would be lost on me and not worth the price (to me). The KOP and medium nib are now among my favorites and is nearly always inked.

In 2017 I bought my Visconti Brunelleschi, a pen similar in size, and with the same nib, as my Visconti Homo Sapien Bronze Age. I didn’t want the same extra fine nib. This typically where I would have gone with a broad nib. By now I realized I wouldn’t use a broad nib enough to justify the cost of the pen. So I picked a medium nib.

While thin nibs are still my preference for everyday use, if I had held onto my anti-medium bias, I wouldn’t have had a several of my favorite pens: the Aurora Optima, Visconti Brunelleschi, Sailor KOP. Plus, I would have been less willing to chance an oblique medium.

Favorite Medium Nib Pens

Favorite Medium Nibs (L-R Aurora Optima, Visconti Brunelleschi, Sailor KOP, MB Ultra Black (OM)