Friday, April 25, 2014

Goulet Q&A Episode 28, Pilot/Namiki Fountain Pens

So I'd originally intended for this week's Q&A to be about Pilot and Namiki pens and ink, but I didn't get a single question about ink! Oh well, so I changed the title to give focus to the brands' pens. I had a bunch of great questions that you can see with timestamps below. Enjoy!

1) Myke N.- email (3:43): 
When are you expecting to have the Pilot Resin Falcon with the Soft Extra Fine nib be back in stock?

2) Myke N.- email (4:35): 
What is your recommendation on cleaning a Con-70 converter?

3) Myke N.- email (7:48): 
Have you used a Justus 95? If so, what is your impression of the adjustable nib? Would you be able to do a review of it?

4) @jjlsetter/@dowdyism- Twitter (9:32):
Best way to clean inside the top portion of a vanishing point, near the trap door part?

5) Shane H.- Facebook (13:12):
I've been writing with my pilot metropolitan with the nib upside down to get a finer line out of it. Will this damage the nib in the long run? 

6) Jeanne P.- Facebook (15:44):
I like the Custom Heritage 912 w/ FA nib & it's not offered here US. Can u special order?
7) Francisco H.- Facebook (16:50):
Would the Prera suit a student? I have a have a metropolitan, but I'm looking to branch more into the Pilot brand.

8) Dylan K.- Facebook (20:16):
I was browsing EBay looking for well priced Pilot vanishing points and I came across some earlier models from the 60s and 70s. I couldn't find any reviews on these older models, and was wondering if they would be a wise purchase.
9) Sherah E.- Facebook (21:40):
How many pages of writing should the ink in a fully filled CON-70 provide, given one has medium sized writing?

10) Bill M.- Facebook (26:32):
Are the nibs and feeds on the custom series the same for all three pens? They all seem cool, but an extra $130 might not be worth it to some people just for the vacuum fill.

11) Rob P.- Facebook (29:09):
Can the Falcon nib be used for everyday writing or is the line variation cumbersome when taking notes? Also, do you think Goulet will ever sell Pilot Metropolitan nibs? I really enjoy using my Pilot Metropolitan but feel a Fine nib would better suit my needs. It would be great if the nibs could be swapped like on the Lamy Safari. Thanks!! 

12) Winnie P.- Facebook (34:34):
I have given 3 Metropolitans as gifts and everyone loves them. They are perfect for newbies. They all ask about a fine nib, any idea when they will be available? Thank you.
13) Wesley S.- Facebook (35:32):
How long does the hooded nib of the Vanishing Point stay protracted before drying out when not in use? I'm thinking of getting this pen for clinical work but I don't want to annoy my patients with constant clicking noises in between jotting notes. 

14) Mike H.- Facebook (37:17):
I was thinking about purchasing a Namiki Falcon but I was wondering if you have any other pens in the price range that you would prefer.

15) Neil K.- Facebook (40:16):
What is the future direction of the name branding? Is everything moving to Pilot? Or will they continue to maintain the Namiki branding for "high end" products? I know that Vanishing Point is in transition.

16) Michelle L.- Facebook (44:15):I know everyone loves the metropolitan, the Prera, Namiki Falcon and the Custom 74 but what are some other Pilot models that are under-rated and few people rave about? I love Japanese pens and would love to know your opinion!

Thanks to everyone who asked me these great questions this week. Be sure to check out my older Q&A videos here, and post in the comment below if you have any random fountain pen question for my Open Forum topic next week. Have a great week! 

Write On,
Brian Goulet


  1. I actually bought the Metal Falcon SEF for the Con 70 usability, love it, though I may just have to replace the converter when I change colors

  2. Question 13) i did a test on my VP trying to figure out drying out time when the nib was out. I started in 5 minute increments. After 10 minutes the nib still was not dried out. Using a fine nib with Pilot cartridge blue. I stopped after 10 minutes.

  3. Q13) as long as it's a fine or extra fine , I would be surprised if a doctor will have the time for the nib to dry out. I would worry more about ink running out

  4. Alternate cleaning idea for the con-70:

    Use an ink syringe, fill with water, and insert the little rod in the middle into the syringe needle. You can then squirt water into the back end, which would effectively clean it out.

  5. My suggestion for an open forum topic is the issue of ink reformulation - inks can change (J Herbin 1670 Rouge Hematite, Poussiere de Lune; Noodler's Army Green; iron-gall blue-blacks from Lamy, Montblanc, etc), sometimes dramatically so - buyers should be aware that what they get sometimes might not look/behave like what they've seen/read about online.

  6. For Wesley, question 13: I am a doc, and for years have used Vanishing Points to take notes. Never had a problem with drying out using a medium nib. I do make a point of retracting the nib once I finish taking the history and move on to the exam, though. No patients have ever complained about the clicking!! I especially love the VP for working in the office with patients - no worries about where to put the cap in models that can't post, or that the cap will fall off when posted - believe me, that attracts a LOT more attention than a click! Try one, and I bet you'll be hooked!

  7. You said in the last part of the video that the Pilot Kakuno pens are sold out around the world. Now I wish I had bought several last October when I was living in Tokyo. I bought ONE Kakuno pen and gave it away as a present. I should have bought 20! One Pilot Kakuno cost me 1050 yen (about US$11). It writes very well: smooth, no skipping. It takes the PIlot converter and the cartridges. The only drawback to the Kakuno is if you drop it without the cap, the nib can get damaged easily.

  8. I also bought the Pilot Custom Heritage 91 in Tokyo last October. It is different from the Pilot Namiki Falcon. The Namiki Falcon writes more smoothly than the Custom Heritage 91 but the 91 is less expensive.

  9. Question for the Open Forum QA. What's your preferred method of storing fountain pens if you have a large or growing collection? I only have a dozen right now, and simply keep them in their original boxes, but I can see that becoming rather space intensive as my collection grows. How do you choose to store yours?

  10. Hi, I don't know where you live, but I just discovered this affordable option at Lee Valley Tools:


  11. Question for the Open Forum QA: Can the Platinum Cool be used as an ink dropper? I use it for sketching and I seem to run out of ink quickly using the converter. I have the Platinum Preppy O rings and your silicone grease already. Thanks for all your help in these Q&A's and your other videos.

  12. I'm glad you mentioned thinking about doing a video for the Pilot Stargazer towards the end. I've had my eyes on that pen for a while but found myself a little perplexed at how few reviews or videos there were for it!


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