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Thread: Educate me on fountain pens

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by orchestrion View Post
    It's a term that Noodler's uses to name their inks that are waterproof, tamper proof, and permanent among other things. Someone more educated on it can chime in, but it basically means that it's nearly impossible for someone to mess with it once it's on paper. Not all of their inks are "bulletproof" but the ones that are will be labeled as such.
    Nathan uses bleach, solvents, alcohol, and UV (among other things) before proclaiming them Bulletproof.

  2. #62
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    WOW! Theres Montblanc solid gold fountain pens on ebay with prices over 80k. i really had no idea on how theres a totally different world for fountain pens. Last time I wrote with a fountain pen was in high school (16yrs ago) and remember having a test in writing with one. It was an older teacher that made it a part of the class program.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by RGraphics View Post
    WOW! Theres Montblanc solid gold fountain pens on ebay with prices over 80k. i really had no idea on how theres a totally different world for fountain pens. Last time I wrote with a fountain pen was in high school (16yrs ago) and remember having a test in writing with one. It was an older teacher that made it a part of the class program.
    There's a good chance that for every thing that 'normal' people find mundane, there's somebody out there who is enthusiastic about it. I'm sure the average public would balk at many of the people on this forum. After all, shaving is something people learn while growing up and some might see this fascination with shaving as juvenile. Fountain pens come in an absolutely huge range of prices, from a couple bucks to something 99.999% of people wouldn't ever be able to afford. I found a blog on the internet recently that was all about pencils, and then mostly about the simple wooden ones. In browsing that blog for a few minutes, I came to understand that there is a hierarchy of quality #2 pencils.

    In browsing other non-shaving related subforums here, you'll find plenty of little obsessions that might look odd from the outside. Watches are one you'll see in the Haberdashery. Look through the watch of the day thread and you'll be awed by some of the nice things people have there. In the Mess Hall subforum, there are plenty of people in pursuit of their next great meal. They have set up group buys for some fantastic knives at prices many people would never even consider paying, but which I understand to be a good deal when all things are considered. The cafe has plenty of people looking for a perfect cup of tea or coffee and will spend plenty in their journey. To the 'average joe' who is happy with Lipton and Folgers, it must look ludicrous. The same goes with the liquor, beer and wine people here.

    Without inflating this forums' collective ego too much, I believe that these pursuits of perfection are part of what makes life worth living. Being happy with what life throws at you is not in our nature. Rather, we go out and pursue other things simply for the fact that it makes us happy. Other people might think it's a little strange but a man who lives his life for others is not really living his own life.
    -Ryan

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvldatsi View Post
    this is one of those things I just don't understand, but then again, I've only ever used a ball point pen..
    How true. And for me how ironic, as the beneficent nuns in grammar school insisted on us using fountain pens. How I yearned for High School when I would be free to write with a ball point pen!

    Quote Originally Posted by orchestrion View Post
    A few days ago I ordered a Hero 616 just for fun because they look so much like the Parker 51s. I've been planning on ordering a Lamy Safari for a week or so as well.
    I usually use the Hero 616's as work pens. At $1.50, bought in bulk from e-bay, you really can't go wrong.

    Quote Originally Posted by perogee View Post
    So now that I have some pens, now on to inks....

    And the slope gets steeper
    Oh it certainly does, but the vast variety of colors makes it an interesting slope.

    Quote Originally Posted by RosaryMan View Post
    Hmm. This is very interesting. How much is a decent "entry level" roller ball or fountain pen? I'd like to try one out but hate to spend too much. Can you buy them in a store, or do you have to get them via the internet. If there is a store that carries them, that would give me a chance to handle one, try one?, before I buy.
    I just got some $10 Jinhao pens from E-bay and they write very, very smoothly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Groat View Post
    ... I believe that these pursuits of perfection are part of what makes life worth living. Being happy with what life throws at you is not in our nature. Rather, we go out and pursue other things simply for the fact that it makes us happy...
    A interesting thought. Thanks for sharing.
    - Lou

  5. #65

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    Quote Originally Posted by Geeno View Post
    That's what they call it, and that's the claim. It's what I use, too. I do notice that with Noodler's I get ink on top of my nibs, I think that's called "nib creep". No big deal, just strange looking.
    Noodler's is a very lubricating ink and will produce "nib crip" in most pens especially Mont Blancs.

  6. #66

    Default The FP-DE connection

    I rediscovered fountain pens 13 years ago and have never looked back. I rediscovered DE shaving one month ago, and cart shaving has become a thing of the past.

    For me the analogy is striking: Once you've discovered the joys of applying real lather to your face with a fine brush and the clean, precise feel of a single blade removing your beard, nothing else compares. Similarly, for me, no ballpoint or felt tip could ever match the feel of a gold or steel nib laying down free-flowing, water-based ink on paper. There are many other similarities as well: the rituals of lather creation, razor maintenance, brush cleaning, etc. vs. the rituals of filling the pen (from a bottle, please -- you're missing an essential part of the experience if all you use is carts), flushing and cleaning pens; the endless variety of blades, soaps, creams, brushes etc. vs. the endless variety of pens, nibs, inks, papers, and writing paraphernalia such as desk sets, ink bottles, and so forth -- and, of course, the corresponding ADs; the whole vintage vs. modern debate. (You like straight razors? How about dip pens?)

    Like traditional shaving, fountain pens and inks are not for everyone, and if you're into wet shaving you won't necessarily also be taken by fountain pens. On the other hand, if you like writing and the experience of writing ... you may.

    As has been mentioned, Fountain Pen Network is the FP analogue to B&B and a great place to get a feel for the interest as well as lots of useful information and discussion. If you're into the vintage/collecting side of things, the Fountain Pen Board is populated by knowledgeable enthusiasts and moderated by leading experts in the field.

    Sigh. Sometimes I wonder how there's time for a day job.
    Viseguy -- Homo sapiens vegetalis
    "Keep up this good work and very soon I will see to it that you become a Bigelow man."

  7. #67
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    I had a TWSBI Diamond 530 arrive today. I have fallen in love with this pen nearly from the moment I opened the box. It is the clear (demonstrator) option so I get to see all the inner workings and the wonderful ink that I get to put in it as well ( in this case Iroshizuko Tsuki-yo). I like the way it writes and think that I will be carrying this pen a lot
    Learning the naked blade

  8. #68
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    I bought a 16 pack of Hero 616 from a vendor on ebay. (latenight buy it now moment). the pens I use the most are Pelikan. I have the m800 and some m400 . The 800 is my go to pen. I have about 50 pens in my pen stable. It is a great addiction!

  9. #69

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    hi guys...so what nib(s) do you guys prefer for the Lamy safari?
    "Fight 'em 'til hell freezes over...then fight 'em on the ice." --Dutch Meyer

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by gobeavs View Post
    hi guys...so what nib(s) do you guys prefer for the Lamy safari?
    That is going to depend on what you currently enjoy using. If you like a real thin line, XF is probably the only thing that will get you what you want. I've got a M nib Lamy 2000 (which essentially has the same nib in a different material) and wish I had gotten a F instead. It writes larger than true with a wet ink on more absorbent paper.
    -Ryan

  11. #71

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    I'm still a bit of a noob with the fountain pens. I've only got one, and it's a 'medium' nib. It's very smooth, the line is just a bit heavy. It looks like the writing of an ultra fine point Sharpie.

    I'm thinking about grabbing a Safari, but wasnt sure if I should go for the fine or extra fine.
    "Fight 'em 'til hell freezes over...then fight 'em on the ice." --Dutch Meyer

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by gobeavs View Post
    I'm still a bit of a noob with the fountain pens. I've only got one, and it's a 'medium' nib. It's very smooth, the line is just a bit heavy. It looks like the writing of an ultra fine point Sharpie.

    I'm thinking about grabbing a Safari, but wasnt sure if I should go for the fine or extra fine.
    Whichever you decide to do, you can buy replacement nibs from Lamy's website (www.lamyusa.com I believe). They're pretty easy to remove and replace. Here's a link showing how to do it.
    -Matt

  13. #73
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    I'm a fountain pen newbie, and got the Lami safari with Fine nib, using it with Noodler's bulletproof black ink. Even though I prefer fine point pens, the Fine nib does not seem as smooth as I would like. Would I be better off with a Medium?

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by closer View Post
    I'm a fountain pen newbie, and got the Lami safari with Fine nib, using it with Noodler's bulletproof black ink. Even though I prefer fine point pens, the Fine nib does not seem as smooth as I would like. Would I be better off with a Medium?
    If I were you, I would just continue writing with it to see if anything changes. There's some debate as to whether or not fountain pens need "breaking in" or not, but I think after writing with it for a bit you'll know if anything changes. Replacement nibs are cheap enough and easy to replace, so if you don't like the Fine nib you won't have to buy a whole new pen.
    -Matt

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by closer View Post
    I'm a fountain pen newbie, and got the Lami safari with Fine nib, using it with Noodler's bulletproof black ink. Even though I prefer fine point pens, the Fine nib does not seem as smooth as I would like. Would I be better off with a Medium?
    If you literally just got the pen, give it a day or two at least. I have found that many pens, especially when new, drag a bit when you first ink them. Later, the feed saturates and you get better flow coupled with less drag.

    Fountain pens, because of the way they work, need relatively precise alignment of the nib to operate properly. While I feel everything should always work properly out of the box, that does not always hold true. If one tine is above the other, you could be feeling the flat surface between the tines dragging across the paper. This alignment is not always easy to see with the naked eye, which is why many FP enthusiasts buy a loupe. Minor tine adjustments are easy to make with your fingernail and I have had some good results doing so. If you're not sure that alignment is the problem or you don't feel comfortable making adjustments, I would not do it myself.

    Finally, finer nibs are inherently toothier than larger sizes. However, the difference is noticeable but not extremely large. Great amounts of tooth are usually indicative of an alignment problem.
    -Ryan

  16. #76
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    To add to what Groat said, I've read that Lamy's pens are sometimes shipped with "factory gunk" on the nib. Some people like to let the nib sit in soapy water overnight just to be sure it's all gone. If you're not satisfied with the pen's performance after a day or so you could certainly try soaking it.
    -Matt

  17. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by gobeavs View Post
    I'm still a bit of a noob with the fountain pens. I've only got one, and it's a 'medium' nib. It's very smooth, the line is just a bit heavy. It looks like the writing of an ultra fine point Sharpie.

    I'm thinking about grabbing a Safari, but wasn't sure if I should go for the fine or extra fine.
    Lamys write a bit "wet" if you would like a somewhat "drier" pen take a look at a Pilot Vanishing Point in Medium.

  18. #78

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    Quote Originally Posted by closer View Post
    I'm a fountain pen newbie, and got the Lami safari with Fine nib, using it with Noodler's bulletproof black ink. Even though I prefer fine point pens, the Fine nib does not seem as smooth as I would like. Would I be better off with a Medium?
    I see you live in Long Island, NY. Take some time and go by The Fountain Pen Hospital
    You can see numerous other pens and try them out and discuss your issue with the people there.

  19. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by LouieGrandie View Post
    Lamys write a bit "wet" if you would like a somewhat "drier" pen take a look at a Pilot Vanishing Point in Medium.
    I just recently bought a namiki (pilot) Vanishing Point and love it. It had a bit of tooth at first but it's great now. The nibs on Japanese pens tend to run small so if you like fine get a medium.
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  20. #80
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    Thanks for the replies above, guys, as well as the reference to the Fountain Pen hospital. Will check it out.

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