Friday, April 4, 2014

Goulet Q&A Episode 26, Nathan Tardif Interview

In my last Goulet Q&A, I did my best to answer the slew of Noodler's questions I received. There were a few that I thought would best be answered by the man himself, Nathan Tardif! He's the founder of Noodler's Ink, and the one-man-show who designs and coordinates the manufacture of all Noodler's pens and hand-mixes all of the Noodler's ink in the world. He's an incredibly, incredibly busy man, and I am honored to have been able to spend an hour with him!

These questions were all originated from fans, but I have edited them to broaden or narrow the scope:

Q1) Kevin L.- Facebook (5:36):
Why do some pen experts seem to have a problem with Noodler's Ink or its maker? There are some pretty bold statements made out there about the safety of Noodler’s that doesn't seem to match up with the experience that the vast majority of pen users are having.

Q2) David- InkNouveau (20:13):
You (Nathan) encourage tinkering with the flex pen nibs and feeds, yet the nibs and feeds themselves are not available for purchase apart from the pens. I know some people are frustrated because they’ll do some adjustments to their feeds and if they mess up at all they’ve essentially ruined the pen because they can’t get any replacement parts. do you have any plans, or would you be open to considering offering those parts available separate from the pens?

Q3) Tom J.- email (30:41):
When you develop an ink like Black Swan in Australian Roses or 54th Massachusetts that has a special story around the ink and it’s properties. Do you come up with the story first and then develop the ink, or do you develop the ink and find a story to match it?

Q4) Wesley S.- Facebook (37:43):
I’ve read various posts comparing Noodler’s blacks, but I would love a definitive comparison. What are the differences and why are there so many different black inks?

Q5) Scott B.- Facebook (45:42):
At this point you’ve crated 2 higher-end Konrads, the Ebonite and the Acrylic, have you considered doing that for the Ahab? Is that even anything feasible?

Thank you everyone for asking such good questions, and a special thanks to Nathan for your time! Next week's Q&A will be going back to an Open Forum, so any questions can just go right in the comments. I hope you enjoyed this interview, we'll have to do it again!

Write On,
Brian Goulet


  1. This just makes me want to purchase more Noodlers ink!

  2. I believe Nathan Tardif to be a genius and a visionary. I have loved fountain pens for years but limited my use because even inks called permanent smeared badly with a tiny drop of water. That all changed when I discovered Noodler's bulletproof ink in December 2008. He has the courage to take on windmills and change the ink and pen landscape. To create great fraud resistant inks, specialty inks like Blue Ghost, lovely inks with all kinds of properties and fitting wonderful themes is Genius!

  3. I think Nathan Tardif is bright, funny, and honest-- and I think he makes a damn fine product. There is a pen store in Albuquerque that refuses to carry Noodler's Ink based on false negative hype--I haven't shopped there in years. Thank you Brian for doing this, and please thank Mr. Tardif for his time. Noodler's has been for a long time, and remains, my favorite ink. (Including the infamous BSB, I love that stuff) Ok, off to buy some more Noodler's now...LOL about Bill O'Idiot

  4. Scribbling with my Ahab's as I listen. I could listen to his voice and views all the live long day. Love him. Thanks Brian. Thanks Mr Tardif . . .

  5. Nathan talked about the importance of having your written words stand the test of time and I would agree with it. His suggestion about using Noodler's Bad Black Moccasin to make my writing as secure as possible is a great idea. I would also love to find an ink that can be used as a way of authenticating the final written words, such as a celebrity signing an autograph. It's not only important to have my words be available in the future but to also have those words attributed to me and not someone else. Nathan... any thoughts, ideas or suggestions?

  6. Henry, my thought is to blend your own personal custom mix of Noodler's inks to produce an ink unique to you that no one else would have. In addition to a unique color it could also be given UV fluorescent components. If you keep the ratios secret, no one else could duplicate it without a lot of effort. Just don't mix any Baystate inks with any others! And be sure to start with a small quantity (just a few mililiters at a time) to see how stable each iteration is and how well you like it before you mix a whole bottle full. And keep a log of your experiments as you progress. Whitness of the Whale is designed to be used to dilute dark inks and also provide a fluorescent component. Blue Ghost is one of several fluorescent bulletproof inks in Noodler's arsenal. Is this the kind of thing you had in mind?

  7. Yes, that is what I had in mind and I've tried a few different combinations. The fluorescent component is easy to mix into but tough to visually see using a fluorescent light. Basically, the darker the ink the more Blue Ghost ink you will need to be able to identify your brand of ink.

  8. Been meaning to ask this but Brian once brought up the fact all Noodler's Ink are and still handmade by Nathan does that affect the consistency of the Ink's performance like being a hit or miss or they are all okey with quantity purchases IE (every batch since their inception has been very consistent?)


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