Wishlist

Friday, July 26, 2013

Lamy Safari Cap Finials



Since the re-release of the limited edition pink Lamy Safari, I've been getting asked a lot about what the finial looks like on the cap. And for good reason, it's actually different than it was when the pen was previously available in 2010/2011!

Back then, the finial was pink and round with a hole in the middle, much like other Safaris had been previously (like the orange one).

Lamy Safari Orage (discontinued long ago) with old finial


However, the Safaris coming out now are different, with a black "X" finial. The only one that doesn't have a black X is the white Safari, for whatever reason it has a gray finial.

Lamy Safari White, the only current one with a non-black finial

The re-issued pink Safari now has the black X finial that all the other (non-white) Safaris have. Everything else on the pen is exactly the same as it was in the previous release. I'm guessing that this is kind of a global change that they've made in recent years, to standardize the finial and further the economy of scale that comes from repeatability and sharing parts across colors/models.

Comparison of the new and old pink Lamy Safari, everything else on the pen is the same.


I hope this helps answer any questions about the pink Safari! This is a limited edition pen that won't be around but for a month or two, I'm guessing. Lately, Lamy has been releasing their LE pens in single batches, rather than for a set period of time. So if you had your eye on the pink a couple of years ago and missed out, then you should really not wait around too long before jumping on it this time. I'm a retailer who sells it so I do have a bit of a conflict of interest in telling you to 'hurry up and buy', so you should take that into account. But in all honesty, if you really want this pink Safari, you should at least put this pen at the top of your 'to buy' list. At Gouletpens.com we're selling it for $29.60 (list price is $37), and you can get it in EF, F, M, and B nibs in black or steel, as well as 1.1mm, 1.5mm, and 1.9mm in steel.

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Leuchtturm1917 and Original Crown Mill Price Increase on August 1st

Well, this is never really welcome news, but two of the paper brands I carry on my site are going up in price…pretty significantly, I'm afraid. These were price increases handed down from our distributors, and are going into place on Thursday, August 1.

We wanted to let you know in advance before the price increases go into effect so you can stock up at the old prices if you so desire. We do still have our quantity discount program in place (see the individual product pages for more information), to help maximize your savings.

So without further ado, here are the new prices:

Leuchtturm1917 Notebooks
Hardcover Pocket: $10.00 to $12.95 (+29.5%)
Hardcover Large: $14.00 to $18.95 (+35%)
Hardcover Master: $28.00 to $32.95 (+14%)
Softcover Pocket: $9.00 to $10.95 (+22%)
Softcover Large: $12.00 to $15.95 (+30%)
Pen Loops: $4.00 to $4.95 (+24%)
Jottbook Pocket: $4.00 to $3.95 (-1%)
Jottbook Large: $6.00 to $4.95 (-17.5%)

Original Crown Mill
Pure Cotton A5 Tablet: $11.00 to $13.90 (+26%)
Pure Cotton A4 Tablet: $15.90 to $17.90 (+13%)
Pure Cotton A5 Matching Envelopes: $11.00 to $13.50 (+23%)
Pure Cotton A4 Matching Envelopes: $13.00 to $13.90 (+7%)
Classic Laid A5 Tablets: $9.00 to $9.90 (+10%)
Classic Laid A5 Matching Envelopes: $9.00 to $9.90 (+10%)


I'm sorry that we have to do this. It tends to happen with most brands usually once a year. At least you have just over a week to stock up at the old prices. Sound off in the comments with any questions or comments you have.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Edison Pearlette



  • Pearlette unboxing (0:47)
  • Material colors (1:08)
  • Size matters (1:53)
  • Features (3:13)
  • Filling with a converter (6:36)
  • Filling as an eyedropper (7:35)
  • How it writes (9:05)


Edison has brought the Pearlette from their Signature Line pens to the Production Line! This pen was previously only available custom for $225+, but now is available in 3 colors through the Edison retailers (like me) for $149.

The Pearlette is a smaller pen, similar in length to the Edison Nouveau Encore but a little thicker in the body. Here are all the dimensions:
  • Weight w/ Cap 18g
  • Weight w/o Cap 12g
  • Cap Diameter .515"
  • Body Diamater .515"
  • Length Capped 5 3/16"
  • Length Uncapped 4 3/4"

The pens are available in three colors:

  • Deep Indigo Flake
  • Aztec Flake
  • Violet Flake

Here are some of the key features:
  • Smaller pen, similar in size to the Encore and Beaumont
  • Cap is flush with the body, so it's a very sleek design
  • #5 size nib, available in EF, F, M, and B. They're removable and available separately.
  • It uses standard international cartridges or converter at about a 0.5ml ink capacity
  • Pen can easily be converted into an eyedropper pen, with a 3ml capacity!
  • Cap screws to close, pushes to post, and posts securely

Edison Pearlette (top to bottom): Deep Indigo Flake, Aztec Flake, and Violet Flake.

Pearlette in Aztec Flake, uses a #5 size nib available in EF, F, M, and B. Pen cap screws closes and pushes to post. This color comes with a two-tone steel nib and a yellow gold clip. This color is very similar to the limited edition Tortoise Flake Encore we sold in November 2012. 

Pearlette in Deep Indigo Blue. This light pen is well-balanced both posted and non-posted, but larger hands might appreciate posting.
Pearlette in Violet Flake, uses a standard international cartridge or converter, and can be eyedropper converted for 3ml ink capacity! This color comes with a steel nib and rhodium-plated clip.



The Pearlette is now available at Gouletpens.com for $149, and extra #5 nibs are available for $20 each. If you've had your eye on this pen for a while but didn't want to pay for a custom Edison Signature pen, you'll be happy to see this pen now regularly available at the reduced price through retailers. 

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Monday, July 8, 2013

Mailbox Monday #52


My email inbox gets a plethora of interesting pen related questions, and I spend a good deal of time crafting thoughtful responses to each person who writes to me. A lot of times, the questions I get are good ones that I feel are worth sharing with you! I'll be posting highlights of some of my more interesting email questions every Mailbox Monday. These are some emails of mine from the past week or so:

Hi Brian, following Montblanc's recent announcement about the recall/temporary discontinuation of their Lavender Purple ink, I am turning to my other favorite ink brand, Noodler's, for a replacement. Do you have any recommendations for which Noodler's purple ink might most closely match Montblanc Lavender Purple's shades? Thank you!
I've never used or seen that ink in person, so it's hard for me to say what will be the closest match. I did some searches but depending on the image/reviewer posting it, the color can look really different. But it looks to me to be kind of a dusty purple, so for Noodler's inks I think Purple Heart, Purple Wampum, or Violet might be the closest. Some other ones to consider would be Diamine Damson and J. Herbin PoussiƩre de Lune

I saw somewhere that the Namiki Falcon can be used as an eye dropper pen, which I assume would over come low ink capacity of the Con 50 or cartridge.
Yes, it can be done, but may not be ideal. This blogger (the Peaceable Writer) writes about their experience converting it and had ink blobbing/leaking problems doing so, that seems to be a somewhat common issue with the eyedropper conversion so it probably shouldn't be the sole factor in your decision making, but merely a perk if you happen to be able to do it without any trouble. 

I live in Los Angeles and the heat can get pretty hot, even indoors where I store it on my desk (upwards of 100.F). Could the ink be drying up in the feed and behind the nib on my Pilot Metropolitan, causing a “scab” to impede the flow to the nib tip?
The heat will most definitely be a factor. Is it also dry where you are? The relative humidity is a factor as much as the heat. Fountain pen ink is mostly water, and if it's really hot, that water can evaporate as your pen sits there. What's happening is that the water is drying a bit out of your nib, which then leaves it dry so it won't start. The ink wants to flow down which is why it is gathering up on the feed, but if there's dried ink in the way, it just won't flow.

So there are a couple of things you can do, some of which are more practical than others. 1) Clean/ink your pen every two days. That's kind of annoying, so you may not want to do that. 2) Use a paper towel to wipe your nib off after it's been sitting a while. The paper towel can help to wick out the ink through your nib, which will help to get it flowing again. It's simple, and usually works for this kind of thing. 3) You can keep a small cup of water handy and just dip your nib into it, to get it wet again. This usually works well, but your first bit of writing will be weak in color, so you may want to use this in tandem with a paper towel wicking. 4) Switch inks....it may just be that this ink isn't suited for this pen in this weather! 

Hi Brian! I am now following your videos about care and handling of fountain pens. Yours get right to the subjects that I need to know. I am just starting out, and I need your help, please. My questions concern 4 pens that [probably] belonged to my mom: Parker USA.....plunger Sheaffer 14k.....snorkel Osmiroid italic, medium, straight, England Parker 14k, 585, England 5. Okay! I couldn't stand the suspense so I filled them with Pelikan 4001. Problem is, all the nibs are so light and fine. I do not write with a light & fine script. Now what? What's a pen & nib a beginner begins with? I like these pens because they are definitely WWII era. Should I replace the nib? With what? If I can use them, how much does it cost to have them looked at to see if they need cleaning or repair? Or, find a vintage pen of my own?
I'm glad you like my videos! I try to be pretty to-the-point :) The first thing you're going to want to do if you haven't already is clean your pens out really well. If they were left with ink in them when your mom stopped using them, then there could be old dried-up ink in them that is impeding the ink flow, which would make it write really weak. You can try just cleaning with water, but usually with older pens that have been sitting around for a while, a pen flush helps a lot to jump start them back into working order.

If they're clean and still writing weak, that could very well just be the ink. Pelikan 4001 inks are pretty weak in general, you may find another type of ink more appealing. I find Noodler's, Private Reserve and Diamine to have some of the boldest and most saturated ink colors. We even carry samples so you can try out different inks that look appealing to you before buying a whole bottle.

I'm honestly not sure if you'll be able to swap the nibs in these pens....I'm not really a vintage guy. But I'm willing to bet that if you can, it won't be easy, and it won't be cheap or easy to find the nibs to even swap, since I believe these are all discontinued pens. You'd need to find vintage nibs to replace them. It'll actually be cheaper just to buy whole new pens, and just keep these ones intact. After a while, you may actually come to appreciate them for what they are.

I'm really not sure who does the cleaning up of old pens, I've heard of a few people but honestly no one that I know well enough to want to recommend. It may be worth posing a question on the Fountain Pen Network there are a lot of helpful folks there and they can point you in the right direction.

I'm not sure if you're the right person to ask, but so far you've come up with the best answers to any of my pen related questions, so I figured it couldn't hurt. I recently came into possession of a 1948 Parker 51 Demi. I took it to a local pen shop here and the guy couldn't get it to write. But I pretty much expected that, I took it in mostly to identify it and figure out just exactly how it was supposed to fill. He suggested I give it a good flush. It sort of worked after that, but I still didn't think it was working right. I'm assuming it has an EF nib on it, because it writes with a finer line than anything I've ever used before, but the flow just seems off and it skips a lot. So I sent it off to a guy who has repaired a couple of modern Watermans for me, He claimed to refurbish the filling system. Again it worked for like a day and then stopped.

It boils down to the fact that I know next to nothing about vintage pens. And I'm not sure if my expectations are a bit unrealistic as I'm comparing something from 1948 to my modern pens, or if there's still something wrong with it. Do you know of any way I could try to diagnose it myself or of anyone that I could send it to to attempt to figure out if its a lost cause or not? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Also, I'm looking into stub nibs. A few years back I was working on some calligraphy for a friend and wound up with the Lamy Joy 3 piece set. I find the 1.1 and 1.9 almost impossible to write with, but the 1.5 a pleasure. I think that (based on the 1.5 and my prior experience with Lamy) something wasn't quite right about the set I got (that came cheap, and a little beat up from a third party) and before I write them off completely I'd like to try some other stub nibs for comparison. Any suggestions between the TWSBI or the Montverte? I'm really tempted to just buy the Goulet nibs in the stub sizes, but I'm not really interested in more Noodler's pen smell....maybe if I burned a konrad/ahab before i switched the nibs.....

Flushing a pen like that is always a good first step. You want to make sure you do it really well, because if there's any old dried ink up in there, it can really impede your ink flow. You may even need to resort to filling the pen with flush and letting it sit in there for a day or two, to really break down the gunk in there. I'm afraid I don't know much about vintage pens myself, and there's nothing glaringly obvious about your pen that I can think of besides making sure it's clean. Is it writing scratchy at all? Perhaps the nib was damaged or mishandled before it came to you. You might be able to see it if the damage is obvious, but likely you'd need to send it to a professional, sorry to say. 
For stub nibs, I don't want you to write off 1.1 and 1.9 nibs just because of your Lamy set, especially because you got it second-hand. Lamy nibs are usually good, as are TWSBI and Monteverde. The advantage of TWSBI over Monteverde is they have a 1.1 and 1.5, whereas Monteverde only has a 1.1. They're similar, but a little bit different in that the TWSBI nibs are just a little springy, and the MV nibs are pretty stiff. My Goulet nibs are also pretty stiff, not that it really matters in terms of writing performance, it's really just a personal preference thing. I would say that any of these nibs would give you a good experience, so it'll boil down more to the features of the pen and what's important to you there that will determine what you should get. 

Thanks for taking the time to read my emails! I'd love to hear what you think in the comments. I'll be compiling more emails into my next Mailbox Monday post!

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Sunday, July 7, 2013

July Ink Drop Reveal: America!

For the July 2013 Ink Drop, we wanted to pick some colors to represent our country, America! With our Independence Day this month, the timing just seemed appropriate. Here are the colors we chose:
We hope this selection makes you feel a bit more patriotic! Sound off in the comments what you think of these colors (after you've tried them, of course!).

Friday, July 5, 2013

Goulet Mylar Paper Tutorial



  • What is Mylar Paper (0:42)
  • Disclaimer (1:54)
  • Goulet Mylar Paper (3:12)
  • How to Use Mylar Paper (4:28)
Concluding a slew of pen tuning supply videos, here is my tutorial on Goulet Mylar Paper. This is one of the lesser-known tools that you can use to smooth your fountain pen nib, and it's one of my favorite because it can really take that nice nib and make it incredible. This pair of 4.25"x5.5" sheets includes one 1-micron and one 0.3 micron sheet of Mylar paper, which is a super-fine abrasive used to make your nibs write glassy-smooth. I wouldn't really consider Mylar to be a repair tool like the Micro-Mesh, it's really more of a honing tool used to take a good nib and make it smoother than you would expect from most pens. It's pretty simple to use, and is harder to misuse than the more aggressive Micro-Mesh. That said, I still need to stick a disclaimer in here…

Warning: Using an abrasive like Mylar paper to smooth your nib voids just about every pen manufacturer's warranty, so make sure you're only working on pens that are out of warranty, or that you're confident you will never need to have serviced by the manufacturer or returned to the retailer. It's best to practice on inexpensive pens that you don't mind screwing up if things go bad.

It's always best to first check your nib for proper alignment before trying any nib smoothing remedies. Often a scratchy nib is simply a matter of one tine bent lower than another, and you can see this symptom with the aid of a loupe or other magnifying glass. If the tines are aligned and the nib still writes scratchy, then Micro-Mesh is often a good measure for more severe scratchiness. If your nib is writing satisfactory but you just want it to write a bit smoother, then you will likely benefit from the use of Mylar paper.


Goulet Mylar Paper comes in two-sheet set, a 1-micron and 0.3-micron for getting nibs glassy smooth.





How to Use Mylar Paper

Using Mylar paper to smooth your nib is a bit of an art form, and may take some practice for you to be able to do reliably. It is not as aggressive a material as Micro-Mesh, so you will need to be patient when working with the Mylar. It's always best to take a conservative approach when working with any abrasive on your nib. Use a light touch and be very patient.

Only one side of the Mylar paper is abrasive. There is a shiny side that just shows the backing to the abrasive, and that will get you nowhere if you try to use it to do your smoothing! The duller side is the one that has the abrasive on it, so that will be the 'working' side that you will want touching your nib. You'll notice that the paper itself doesn't feel very abrasive to the touch, that's because 1-micron and 0.3-micron particles are pretty dang small. It's often hard to tell which side actually has the abrasive on it. You can tell most easily by reflecting a light off the Mylar, the shiny side is the non-abrasive plastic backing, and the duller side is the abrasive side that you will use to smooth your nib. But the shiny side down on your desk, and the dull side up.

Hold your inked-up pen as you normally would, and lightly make figure-8 patterns about 10-15mm tall on a paper of your choice. It's best to use a smooth paper for this, but that's up to you. If your nib feels consistent (not scratchy at any particular point) but simply has more feedback than you would like, then it's time to break out the 1-micron Mylar paper. (If it does actually feel scratchy, you may want to consider Micro-Mesh as a precursor to Mylar, as it's more aggressive at fixing scratchy nibs). Have your sheet of Mylar next to your paper, on a flat and stable surface. Make the same figure-8 pattern on your Mylar as you did on your paper, applying very light pressure and going fairly slow. You will want to keep even pressure throughout the figure-8. It's best to only do a few figure-8's at a time on the Mylar before checking back on your paper. If you want it to feel smoother, then keep repeating this process until it feels as smooth as you like, then stop. If you find after several cycles of this with the 1-micron Mylar that it's just not quite as smooth as you'd like, then you can repeat the same process with the 0.3-micron Mylar.



We offer the pair of the 1-micron and 0.3-micron Mylar paper in a set at Gouletpens.com for $4.95, and one set should be enough to do all of the pens in your collection for years to come. This stuff really doesn't wear out very much, so as long as you don't lose it or damage it, this should be the only set you'll ever need.

Write On,
Brian Goulet 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Goulet Micro-Mesh Tutorial


Why do you need it? (0:48)
Disclaimer (2:04)
Goulet Micro-Mesh (3:17)
How to use Micro-Mesh (5:17)
How long will it last? (14:09)

Warning: Using an abrasive like Micro-Mesh to smooth your nib voids just about every pen manufacturer's warranty, so make sure you're only working on pens that are out of warranty, or that you're confident you will never need to have serviced by the manufacturer or returned to the retailer. It's best to practice on inexpensive pens that you don't mind messing up and throwing away if things go bad. You only have yourself to hold accountable if you mess something up! 

Used by many nibmeisters, Micro-Mesh is an incredibly fine abrasive paper that will help to smooth out the tip of a scratchy nib. I view it as a repair tool, something that will help a nib that doesn't feel good on paper, especially if it's scratchy in one particular direction.

It's always best to first check your nib for proper alignment before trying any nib smoothing remedies. Often a scratchy nib is simply a matter of one tine bent lower than another, and you can see this symptom with the aid of a loupe or other magnify
ing glass. If the tines are aligned and the nib still writes scratchy, then Micro-Mesh is often a good measure for more severe scratchiness. If your nib is writing satisfactory but you just want it to write a bit smoother, then you may not need Micro-Mesh at all, and you could opt for the finer abrasive Mylar paper instead.
Micro Mesh #1

Using Micro-Mesh to smooth your nib is a bit of an art form, and may take some practice for you to be able to do reliably. It is possible to overdo it, which could possibly cause permanent damage to your nib that should be repaired by a professional nibmeister. It's always best to take a conservative approach when working with any abrasive on your nib. Use a light touch and be very patient.

Hold your inked-up pen as you normally would, and lightly make figure-8 patterns about 10-15mm tall on a paper of your choice. This will help you to identify what part of your stroke is feeling the deepest scratchy feeling. Have your sheet of Micro-Mesh next to your paper, on a flat and stable surface. Make the same figure-8 pattern on your Micro-Mesh as you did on your paper, applying very light pressure and going fairly slow. If you are able to feel where the scratchy feeling is most prevalent, apply a slightly greater amount of pressure to that part of the stroke of your figure-8 as you're drawing it on your Micro-Mesh.

If you need to concentrate the smoothing on one particular part of your stroke, you can stop doing the figure-8 and just go back and forth in the motion that feels the scratchiest. For example, if you know your scratch is felt the worst when you write from right-to-left straight across, you can repeat just this motion on the Micro-Mesh to smooth out just that part. Repeatedly move back and forth between your Micro-Mesh and your paper, to check on your progress and only continue smoothing on the abrasive as long as is necessary to make the scratchy feeling go away. It's best to only do a couple of figure-8's at a time on the abrasive before checking back on your paper.

Micro Mesh #2

Micro-Mesh alone will smooth out most scratches, and if you haven't used 'good' nibs before, just the Micro-Mesh smoothing alone will probably feel amazing! It won't give you the absolute smoothest nib possible, though. For that you may want to upgrade to the even finer abrasive Mylar paper. Chances are though, if you've been living with a scratchy nib and you get it smoothed out with the Micro-Mesh, you'll feel like your nib is glossy smooth just with the work you've done here. T

his 6"x3" sheet of 12,000 grit Micro-Mesh is available at Gouletpens.com for $4.95, and will be enough to last you years. It will help you save those scratchy nibs that made you want to throw your pens away!

Write On, 
Brian Goulet

Don't miss anything! Subscribe to our Weekly Email Newsletter!

Disqus for Goulet Pens Blog