Friday, February 28, 2014

Goulet Q&A Episode 23, Monteverde

This week's Goulet Q&A is picking back up with a brand focus, and today I'm answering questions about Monteverde. They've had a lot of new pens coming out lately and I thought it might be helpful to share what I know about them. Here we go:
1) @RocksInSpace- Twitter (1:03):As a proud owner of the new Impressa I'm wondering if the nib / nib unit swap is the same in Swapping Out Monteverde Nibs video.
2) Anastasia R.- Facebook (1:52):Are there any converters that work with the Monteverde Touch Screen Stylus Fountain Tool Pen? Love the black one! I use fountain pens in part because of the lack of waste, and cartridges are waste. 
3) Asif C.- Facebook (3:34):Say I wanted to get a black Monteverde nib in .7mm cursive italic, how would I go about doing that? Would I be able to do it through Goulet pen company?

4) @KatieZumbrum- Twitter (5:04):
I cannot find very much online about the Monteverde Lamy cartridges.  Are they good or should I stick to Lamy cartridges? 

5) Kimberly S.- Facebook (6:28):
How does the Poquito stack up to other pens in a similar price point? I'd love to see a side by side.
6) Patrick D.- Facebook (8:43):
My Invincia with a black nib seems to write much drier than my Prima with a chrome nib. They both have medium nibs. Is that typical?

7) Benjamin B.- Facebook (9:43):
Why is the Nighthawk being scrapped??
8) Steven B.- Facebook (12:19):
Since the Nighthawk is being retired...what was the total number produced? Can we now say it was an un-numbered limited edition?

9) Scott B.- Facebook (14:44):
When I started using fountain pens about a year ago my preferred pen was a piston fill pen. Do you know if Monteverde will ever make a piston fill pen? Also why doesn't Monteverde make 1.5 stub nibs?

10) John H.- Facebook (17:12):
What do you think of the MegaInkball....the rollerball the fills from a bottle? I've got one and I love it. It comes with a few replacement nibs. I haven't found the need to replace the original nib yet...and I've had it for several years.
11) @mp4167- Twitter (18:37):
I have a Napa. Very smooth. How do I order parts?

12) Shawn Biddle- Youtube (19:42):
The Artista Crystal is one of the rare pens that have a clear feed. It's such a cool feature so why the reason for the rarity - maybe it's just too much of a "casual" look for other brands to use? Any lesser known pens with a clear feed besides Monteverde Artisa and the Platinum Cool

I will be off next week (March 7) but will return with a Q&A Open Forum on March 14th. If you find yourself going through withdrawals, maybe you can check out some of my older Q&A's. I'm starting to get quite the little library of them now! Have a great week, and thanks for watching and asking such great questions.

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Intro to the Monteverde Impressa Fountain Pen

Monteverde Impressa Video Highlights:
  • Unboxing: (1:00)
  • General overview: (2:00)
  • Showing all four colors: (5:00)
  • Taking a closer look-details: (6:22)
  • Comparing the Impressa with other pens: (7:56)
  • Discussing the converter: (11:35)
  • Filling the pen: (13:00)
  • Writing with it: (14:38)
  • Pros and cons summary: (17:12)

I just got my hands on the new Monteverde Impressa, which is the latest in a variety of new pens that has come out from this brand. Monteverde's known for coming out with pens in unique materials and finishes, and this pen fits that bill. They have a solid line of mid-priced pens and at $40 at GouletPens.com ($50 list) I think they really hit this pen right where they needed it to be. They have 4 different colors in the all-metal pens with a couple of really unique combinations!

Monteverde Impressa, Black/Rose Gold

Monteverde Impressa, Pearl Silver/Blue

Monteverde Impressa, Gun Metal/Red

Monteverde Impressa, Black/Chrome

The size of the Impressa is great, nice for large and small hands. Check out how it compares to other pens in the Goulet Pen Plaza. It's well-balanced, though it is heavy! At 40g it's going to be a bit much for some, as the pen is all metal and is really sturdy. It has a really affirmative snap-cap with an inner seal in the cap, and posts incredibly securely. Posting it is really nice, though fare warning, it does give the pen a bit of back-weight. Just the body of this pen weights as much as a whole Lamy 2000 (25g).

The pen has a spring clip with a huge opening, so you can wear it on shirt with really thick material. The nibs available are fine, medium, broad, and 1.1mm stub in both steel and black finishes. Monteverde's nibs in general tend to write like most European pens (think Lamy, Pelikan), though they can sometimes be a bit dry due to some tight tines. It's not all of them like that, but it happens from time to time (seems moreso on the black nibs). You can flex out the tines a little to increase the flow with relative ease (just don't overdo it) and get it writing wetter. Check out the Nib Nook to see how writing samples compare with other nibs.

Impressa Pros:
  • $40 price is great for a pen of this caliber
  • #6 size nibs swap between other Monteverde pens, and they offer MV nibs separately
  • Color options are really unique/different
  • Snap-cap is really convenient and seals well
  • Takes standard international converter or cartridges (both included)
Impressa Cons:
  • Pen is heavy, probably too much for some 
  • Fingerprints, they are impossible to keep off the finish of this pen
  • Converter included is slightly smaller than the others Monteverde uses on their pens

So what do you think of Monteverde's latest creation?

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Intro to the Monteverde Regatta Sport Fountain Pen

Video notes:
(1:34) Unboxing
(3:02) The magnetic cap!
(3:58) Weight and balance
(4:29) Inside the pen
(5:13) The three colors
(6:06) Finial and other details
(7:13) Grip section and cap
(8:57) Will the magnetic cap cause problems?
(11:05) Comparing to the "old" Regatta
(12:42) Filling the pen
(14:53) Nib options, writing samples&nbsp
(16:40) Increasing the flow of the Monteverde nib 

Monteverde has recently redesigned their Regatta fountain pen, now called the Regatta Sport, with an alternating black carbon fiber and resin pattern with a super cool magnetic cap and the same #6 Monteverde interchangeable nibs in fine, medium, broad, and 1.1mm stub in steel or black color. You can see how these nibs compare to each other as well as nibs from other brands in the Nib Nook.

The Regatta is actually a pen that we'd considered carrying a while ago (before it was all sporty), but we never pulled the trigger on it because we got wind that it was going away. It used to be available in a similar design but with a whole different look to it (and no carbon fiber). We'd debated about bringing it in when we heard it was redesigned, and once we saw them, it was a no brainer. I personally took the yellow one for myself, I dunno, it just strikes me!

This is a heavy pen, for sure. At 50g it's one of the heaviest pens I've ever used. It definitely will not be for those with dainty hands, this is the kind of pen that will make a statement. Mainly, "Hey, look at me, I'm a sweet fountain pen!!". I've personally taken mine to a couple of meetings already and it's a great conversation piece.

The Monteverde nibs write well, generally, though sometimes the tines can be a little tight and want to write dry. I show you towards the end of the video how to fix that, it's real easy. This isn't probably the kind of pen you'll want to write with for extended periods of time, it'll just too heavy. This is going to be more of a statement pen, and one that will generate a conversation. It's really good for quick notes and to-do lists because the magnetic cap is really easy to pop on and off, which is a convenience you don't get with too many fountain pens (most are screw-cap).

The Monteverde Regatta Sport in red, closed
The Monteverde Regatta Sport in yellow, open
The Monteverde Regatta Sport in black, posted
                                                                                        Close-up view of the black Monteverde nib

Detail view of the red Monteverde Regatta Sport
The Monteverde Regatta Sport is available in Red, Black, and Yellow, and is available in a fine, medium, broad, or 1.1mm stub nib in chrome or black from GouletPens.com for $100 (list price is $125).

So what do you think? Does the redesigned Monteverde Regatta Sport get your heart racing?

Write On,
Brian Goulet

Monday, February 24, 2014

Comparing Caran d'Ache Chromatics Inks

Now that Caran d'Ache has released their Chromatics Inkredible line, I can show you how it compares to the old Colors of the Earth line that was discontinued in early 2013. While I'm at it, I'll break it all down and show you inks from other brands that are similar to these 12 new inks. This is a long vid that you'll love if you're an inkophile!

A few video notes with timemarkers:

What are the brand's properties like as a whole? (1:00)
Comparing Chromatics Inkredibles to Colors of the Earth (3:54)
Comparing each color to similar colors across brands (7:10)

Cosmic Black (7:26)

Delicate Green (8:04)

Divine Pink (8:25)

Electric Orange (9:04)

Hypnotic Turquoise (9:34)

Idyllic Blue (10:09)

Infinite Grey (10:54)

Infra Red (11:42)

Magnetic Blue (12:25)

Organic Brown (13:18)

Ultra Violet (13:44)

Vibrant Green (14:42)

What do you think?

Write On,
Brian Goulet

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