Friday, October 21, 2016

Goulet Q&A Episode 143, Open Forum

Goulet Q&A is now available as an audio podcast! Click here  for the RSS feed to use in your podcast app of choice, or click here for a direct download.

In this episode, I talk about old ink cartridges, what pens I've always wanted to sell, and the best thing I've learned about myself since starting GouletPens.

This week:

New/Upcoming Products - (2:49)

Pens/Writing - (5:07)

1) @LucyHoneychurch- Twitter - (5:09)  
There seems to be more problms with the Konrad than the Ahab and Creaper, can you explain why?
  • This used to be the case more than it is today
  • two factors, design and the manufacturer
  • manufacturer: different factory making them, had some tolerance issues on the grip (not the case anymore)
  • design, was made to accept a lot of different nib types, with great power comes great responsibility
  • Nathan changed the design to me more hassle-free, but now it accepts fewer replacement nibs

Ink - (9:52)

2) David- Email - (9:54)
I have about 20 unused packs of cartridges left. Some are up to five years old. Due to evaporation, they are only two thirds or one half full. Are these cartridges safe to use in my pens? Or will the concentrated ink gum up the feeds? If I use a cartridge, could I puncture the cartridge and inject some water into it, shake it up and then install it in the pen? Or should I just toss them and chalk it up as a learning experience?
  • Safe, sure....it won't hurt the pen, it just might not flow well
  • it would surely dry out faster in your pen
  • the plastic leeches moisture over time
  • you could definitely reconstitute the ink with water, sure
  • is that worth the trouble? eh....if the ink is special to you

Paper - (13:34)

3) Matthew Beddow- YouTube - (13:35)
I have purchased a couple of your Goulet notepads (the tomoe river ones )which are fantastic by the way , but I notice there is no branding on the A5 version that I have , I wondered why this would be as surely branding would be a good idea on these excellent pads ?
  • we talked about that, and it all boiled down to cost
  • bottom line is we're not buying them in quantity to justify branding the notebook itself, but we might get there
  • we opted for more minimal branding and greater options (size, color, ruling)
  • we will explore this in the future, for sure

Troubleshooting - (16:41)

4) Taylor G.- Facebook - (16:42)
I switched the nibs between a Pilot Plumix and a Metropolitan. I've had flow issue with the Metropolitan ever sense regardless of ink. I looked that the feeds from both pens, and they seem to be identical, is the feed just no made to handles the italic nib or am I missing something?
  • feeds are identical, yes
  • I don't think the feed is your issue, though that's definitely an important part of the ink delivery to the nib
  • nibs are similar, though I find the Plumix nibs to be a little drier/tighter in flow
  • some simple adjustment can help with that, if you are willing to try
  • always do a good cleaning when there's a flow issue
  • try keeping the feed and nib together when you switch them across pens
  • try swapping the nib back to the Plumix and see if it still persists, maybe there's something that happened to the nib

Business - (22:07)

5) @DianaJBoyd- Twitter - (22:09)
Curious, from start to now, have you ever not been able to get a pen you wanted to sell? How do you choose what brands to sell?
  • oh definitely, especially when we were smaller!
  • Lamy and Pilot played hard to get at first
  • Pelikan has been hit-or-miss, we've tried with certain LE pens and whatnot before
  • Visconti said no thanks to us for 4 years, that was a big one
  • we recently talked to Sailor at the DC show, trying to rebuild that relationship, there's still hard feelings around that...time will tell
  • Montblanc is another big brand we get asked about, but they're not interested (for now)
  • Just last week I wanted to carry the Schrade Tactical Fountain Pen, but it's discontinued!
  • we choose our brands based on customer demand and if we believe in the products
  • beyond that, it's all about relationship building with the manufacturer/distributor and seeing if it's a good fit

6) xilebat- Instagram - (32:09)
Have you stopped periscoping?
  • essentially, yeah
  • we were doing it for a solid year, but it's a huge time commitment on me and Rachel's personal time (which isn't bountiful)
  • once we got pregnant this spring, we eased back
  • when she miscarried, it just knocked the wind out of our sails completely
  • part of it was our viewership had flattened out, a LOT of people were subscribers but stopped tuning in
  • live streaming has picked up on Facebook and YouTube, and Snapchat's moving in that direction, too
  • it is yet to be seen which direction it goes, I'm curious for input

7) Christine B.- Facebook - (36:24)
Who is the author you reference a lot, Gary something? I haven't heard of him but I like leadership authors. And what are the top 5 things you learned from him that have helped you in business or personally? 
  • Gary Vaynerchuck
  • 1) videos
  • 2) personal engagement
  • 3) put in the work
  • 4) gratitude
  • 5) care

Personal - (41:35)

8) Rob B.- Facebook - (41:42)
What's the best thing you've learned about yourself since starting your wonderful company?
  • I have learned a TON about myself!
  • DISC profile, StrengthsFinder, Languages of Appreciation, Myers-Briggs, and more
  • Everyone has their strengths, and it's okay to not do everything perfectly yourself
  • working with others can help balance out my weaknesses, and I have plenty
  • without others on our team, I would not be in the place that I am today, and I'm incredibly grateful
  • so much has changed since starting the company, including me
  • the best thing I've learned about myself is that with discipline, focus, and the help of others, I can continue to grow into the leader I need to be

9) cevt23- Instagram - (46:47)
Hi Brian! Big fan of Goulet! I wanted to ask you at what point in your first years of pen journey and collecting all types of amazing pens, you started to realize that you used only the few ones that were perfect for your writing type, that fit you the most and instantly became in permanent rotation and the rest of your collection was a little behind that few pens. At what level you reached that point? How much pens you had to really became aware of that preference? Cheers!
  • I don't know if I've reached that point! ;) 
  • I'm in a unique position, being that I'm a blogger/personality around these products so I have access to way more pens than most
  • part of my job is to try different pens and keep a lot in rotation
  • I definitely have a short list of go-to pens that's roughly 5% of my collection, and I'm willing to best that's probably pretty common if you have a fair number of pens
  • I'd bet most folks go back to the same 10 pens or so on a pretty regular basis
  • I probably reached that point after 3 years in

QOTW: What's your opinion of live streaming? Where would you want to see me? - (54:33)

Thanks so much for joining us this week! You can catch up on any old Q&A videos you missed here.

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Thursday Things: Sherlock Holmes

What inspired this week's Thursday Things collection, you ask? It's elementary, my dear fountain pen friends! Why, it's Sherlock Holmes! Don your deerstalker caps and join us in a study of the fine writing tools we envision everyone's favorite consulting detective to have possessed. This assortment of pens, inks, and notebooks, inspired by the aptly-named De Atramentis Sherlock Holmes ink, will surely send you on a grand adventure of great literary genius and help you uncover a wealth of untapped writing you've yet to express. Grab your magnifying glass and take a closer look at Thursday Things: Sherlock Holmes.    

Featured products from left to right:
The Thursday Things: Sherlock Holmes Shopping Guide is chock-a-block full of tools for great writing adventures!
Noodler’s Neponset Fountain Pen - Red Rebellion
Aurora Ipsilon Fountain Pen - Satin Blue
Delta Journal Fountain Pen – Matte Red
Pilot E95S Fountain Pen - Burgundy

What pen or ink do you find yourself wanting to investigate next?

Write on,
The Goulet Pen Company Team

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Noodler's Golden Brown: Ink Review

Hello, ink loving friends! Madigan here, bringing you another fantastic ink review on Noodler's Golden Brown. It's one of our top shading inks and Jenni used recently used it in a Monday Matchup. Despite being a fan of brown inks, I hadn't used this one. It exceeded my expectations not only because of it's beautiful shading but because of its unique color and properties. Read on to learn more!

Supplies Used:

Smear Test (Dry Time):
  • Medium- This was a pretty average ink with a dry time of about 20+ seconds. Not the quickest but shouldn't cause too many problems when writing quickly, unless you are lefty. In which case, maybe try a different ink. 

Drip Test (Water Resistance):
  • Medium- Like a number of the most unique Noodler's inks, this ink has a layer that moves and then another layer that is permanent. While this isn't the most waterproof ink I've ever used, I wouldn't be worried about losing an entire manuscript if a glass of water spilled on it.

  • Low- The light brown hue of this ink allows for a lot of additional color changes when more ink is added. This allows for the intense amount of shading you can see in it, and makes it fantastic in art.

Ease of Cleaning:
  • Easy- The light shade of this ink makes it a breeze to clean out of your pen. With the permanent aspect, however, I wouldn't leave it in your pen indefinitely.

  • High- This ink has truly glorious shading! It goes from dark brown to a golden honey.

  • Wet- This is a fast and free flowing ink. This means it'll work well in flex pens, which will give you the greatest chance for maximum shading.

Packaging and Aesthetics:

  • 3oz bottle with 2ml ink samples available
  • Utilitarian bottle with a large mouth for easy filling
  • Pretty standard Noodler's label, nothing special
Inks Similar in Color:

This is truly a unique and interesting ink! With fantastic shading and a some water resistance, it's a great option for correspondence, journaling, note-taking, you name it! Obviously it's an insanely gorgeous ink to use in art, as Jenni proved. I'm definitely adding this one to my list of favorites and will be recommending it from now on.

Do you have a favorite brown ink? Let me now in the comments below!

Write on,

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