Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – September 16, 2018

My fountain pen usage was sporadic these past two weeks, although I did write one fountain pen dry. My Karas Kustoms Ink ran out of Montblanc Petite Prince Red Fox ink. It was inked up back on June 13th and spent most of its time in my Fodderstack XL as my pocket carry.

Nock Co Tallulah with 2 TWSBI Go and FoP Hermes

Nock Co Tallulah with TWSBI Go, Fisher of Pens Hermes and another TWSBI Go. All but the FoP Hermes are new.

Three new products arrived over the past two weeks. I’d gone all year without buying a new fountain pen, and had money in my PayPal account, so I gave in and ordered two TWSBI Go fountain pens. The Smoke version with an extra fine nib. The Sapphire version with a broad nib. Broad nibs aren’t my typical choice, but I figure this inexpensive pen can be used for ink testing and experimentation, so I picked the broad nib.

Also arriving was my Pen Addict RelayCon 2018 Nock Co. Tallulah pen case. I’ve been using it since it came on the Tuesday after Labor Day.

I’ll write about the pens and the case in the next few days.

Finally getting my first new fountain pens in 2018 started the ball rolling. There was still money in the PayPal account when I read about a new Esterbrook Estie pen (the first since Kenro bought the company). The Estie is pretty much what I wanted in a new Esterbrook pen (except the price), so I ignored my rule that pens have to spend some time on my wishlist, and immediately pre-ordered one. I knew that no matter how long I considered it, it would remain at the top of my wishlist. I’m not sure what the market will be for this pen. I’m buying it because I have about three dozen Esterbrook nibs, while the vintage Esterbrook pens are too thin and light for me to write with for anything more than a quick note. I’ve been using the Esterbrook nibs in my custom Newton Eastman; now I can use two at one time. The pen does appear a bit pricey, especially considering that several vintage Esterbrooks can be purchased for the same amount of money, a single Esterbrook often can be less than the cost of the adapter itself. Anderson Pens has a video about the pen, and is taking pre-orders, while Goulet Pens has more of the technical details.

Links

“Always Listen to Your Mother”: I Go to the San Francisco Pen Show – Fountain Pen Follies

D.C. Pen Show Mini Haul & Recap – Owl Ink

The Dogs of the SF Pen Show – Hand Over That Pen

Back to School with the Stabilo EASYbuddy fountain pen. | Fountain pen blog

Handwriting – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

On Craft, Appropriation, and Distance. – Leigh Reyes. My Life As a Verb.

Review: Composition Notebooks at Walmart | Comfortable Shoes Studio

So Ugly It’s Cute? My Thoughts on the TWSBI Go — The Gentleman Stationer

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Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – August 19, 2018

My fountain pen usage continues to be higher than normal, or at least what has passed for normal in recent months. I’ve been writing pens dry on a consistent basis and was down to two pens by Wednesday.

The two pens still inked up on August 15, 2018

I prefer cleaning my pens as I empty them. It’s sometimes faster with fresh ink, plus it’s less tedious. I’ve been neglecting this habit and decided I had to clean all the pens before I could ink up another one. So Wednesday night was a pen cleaning party (worst party ever).

Photo of cleaned pens

Then I picked out the fountain pens that I wanted to ink up. A few of them called for silicone grease (eyedropper fillers). Naturally, I couldn’t find my silicone grease. In my quest to simplify, organize and declutter I had collected all the small silicone grease containers and put them in on baggy, rather than have them scattered everywhere. Then I put them with all my other pens tools and supplies. It was actually my pen toolbox that I couldn’t find.

I gave up looking and ordered some. Now, shipping is nearly as much as the silicone grease itself, so I had to add more to make it worthwhile. After adding I few things I was close to the $50 for free shipping. Hey, free! So add a few more things. So, $52 later I had four bottles of ink and miscellaneous other supplies added to my $4 silicone grease. Needing to justify the ink I tell myself this turned to silicone grease into a $4 purchase, rather than the $7.50 I would have paid without the free shipping. Let’s just ignore the additional $44.50 that I spent.

Naturally, I found the silicone grease (and toolbox) less than an hour after submitting the order. I had swapped my pen tools into a bigger toolbox and promptly forgot. But hey, I got some new ink colors coming (well, two new colors and two bottles of Sheaffer Red which I was out of). As a side note, Sheaffer Red is the only ink for which I’ve emptied multiple bottles.

Now if I can find the other pen related items I’ve misplaced. My Esterbrook inkwells were packed away for safe keeping, and my Nock Co. Lookout pen case has been MIA for months. (No missing pens, so I know it made it home that last time.) That Sheaffer Red is for the inkwell, so it’s time to go through boxes at home and then visit the storage unit if they’re still missing.

A filled notebookIn other minor news, I filled a notebook. This one typically lived next to my computer for notes as I worked. A few weeks from now, once I know I won’t need it for reference, I’ll run it through the shredder.

It’s the time year for composition notebook reviews. I’ve never really paid attention in the past, but they caught my attention this year. (See some in the links below.) While walking through my local grocery store (Stop & Shop) I came across Top Flight composition books with college (medium) ruling for $2. The paper seemed promising, so I picked one up. As I inked up pens last night, I tried them in the notebook. My standards a pretty flexible, but it appears to be very usable. Some show-through, but no bleed through, respectable drying time and no noticeable feathering. With indirect light (from a window) the show-through wasn’t annoying, in the light of a desk lamp it was apparent, but not any worse than other notebooks I’ve been willing to use.

Links

A new method of selecting pen, nib, and ink combination | TooManyPelikans // On the other end of the spectrum is my method: What’s within reach and catches my eye?

Ink Review: Pilot Iroshizuku Fuyu-syogun – The Well-Appointed Desk // I don’t usually read (or link to) ink reviews anymore. But this ink is an old favorite that I recently rediscovered. The bottle is almost empty (with another waiting to be opened).

Review: Composition Notebooks at Staples 2018 | Comfortable Shoes Studio // First composition notebook review for this year. So check the more recent posts on the site for other reviews.

Paper Review: Composition Notebooks – The Well-Appointed Desk

Eclectic or Weak? ! Crónicas Estilográficas

The Montegrappa Fortuna Saga | Rachel’s Reflections

The View from Behind the Shop: The Slow Days of Summer – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

My 2018 D.C. Pen Show Journal — The Gentleman Stationer

Nib Novice, Part 10: The Vanishing Point | Pens and Junk

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – August 05, 2018

My fountain pen usage picked up this past week. In addition to the typical notes and lists managed to write about a dozen A5 or larger pages.

Franklin-Christoph Model 20 Vintage GreenMy Franklin-Christoph Model 20 with its oblique medium nib and Montblanc Psychedelic Purple ink was used far more than any other pen as I waited for it to leak. Technically it didn’t leak. But, on Thursday it rolled off my desk and fell about 3 feet to a carpeted floor. There was ink all over the cap, nib, and section. I’d been using the pen moments before, so I knew the entire mess was new. The converter was now empty, so that was all for this pen. There wasn’t an obvious place for a leak. After I removed the nib unit, I saw some faint ink stains along the section threads in one area, but not enough to indicate ink was flowing through it. I’m going to give the pen a break, but with the next fill, I’ll put some silicone grease around the nib unit threads. I don’t expect that to help. I think this pen is just prone to gushing ink through the feed when gravity and momentum attack it. My other Model 20 remains leak free. In fact, I rolled it off my desk a couple of times, and it was fine.

Links

Richard Binder has published two new fountain pen books. One about L.E. & A.A. Waterman and the other about Wahl-Eversharp. All his books are listed here. I have to admit I haven’t read any of the books.

Daily Carry – The InkSmudge

Aesthetic Bay Nakaya Clinic: Day 2 – Hand Over That Pen

Hobonichi Techo 2019 Preview Festival – HOBO NIKKAN ITOI SHINBUN // Looks like they’re changing the release schedule and will spread it over six days. Follow the link to get the details. Personally, I’ll be skipping paper planners for next year. As much as I want to use one, I find its just not for me. That said, I’ll probably spend the next month trying to come up for another reason to use one.

Using my Hobonichi Techo as a Wellness Tracker. — The Finer Point // One possible excuse to buy a Hobonichi for next year.

Commonwealth Pen Show // The Boston area pen show is Sunday, September 16, 2018.

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – July 29, 2018

Franklin-Christoph Model 20 Vintage Green with medium stub nibEven 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).

Links

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

Links

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?

FOUNTAIN PEN NETWORK-PHILIPPINES TENTH ANNIVERSARY | Personal Geographic

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).