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:

My limited edition VP just arrived with what looks like part of the nib inside the converter (a piece of grey plastic). How do I go about getting the nib replaced?

It’s not part of the nib, but a metal piece that Pilot puts in all of their converters (since March 2012) to keep ink from ‘hanging’ up in the back of the converter. I did a blog post on it a while back here, and believe it or not I just shot a video on it this very afternoon! I still need to edit and upload it so it’ll take me a few days before it’s viewable.

In any case, that piece in your converter is normal, it’s not anything broken or anything like that. I even addressed this piece in the converter in the video review I did of the LE VP, look at 9:45 in and tell me if this is the piece you’re seeing: 

I was looking at the Edison Hudson and noticed that in the writing sample which illustrates the text for each size nib, that the 18k gold fine nib seems to lay down a darker , wetter and thicker line than the steel medium; why is that? You must have tried both, is the 18k smoother and wetter? Can you comment?

The Edison nibs are actually all the same for everything except the Encore, so I speak to all of the pen models. You’re right that the writing sample is darker and wetter for the 18k nibs than the steel ones, that’s exactly how they write. Part of that is because the 18k nibs are softer and flex slightly under pressure…I have a bit of a heavy hand so this tends to put more ink down. But aside from that, the 18k nibs are just flat our wetter writing than the steel nibs, that’s just how they are made. They’re also remarkably smooth though…the steel nibs are smooth, but the gold ones are super smooth. I don’t know particularly why they come this way, it’s just how they are.

Recently I bought two J. Herbin glass pens from an online shop in UK. However, when I received the pens, once was performing like a regular glass pen. However the other one is not writing at all. I mean, you can merely write a word if you are luck. Even though it has ink on the nib, it is not writing. I attached a video to demonstrate the situation in a clear way.

I also send a message to J. Herbin but they haven’t responded yet. So I am not sure what to do with the pen. Do you think I can use a bit of sand paper to smooth the nib?

J. Herbin’s pens have had really bad quality control in recent months, enough so that we dropped them early in the year. Exaclair, the US importer for J. Herbin actually dropped the pens too, so there are no J. Herbin glass pens coming into the US right now until they change manufacturing techniques to have more reliable pens. I would contact the retailer who sold you the pens and either get an exchange or refund, there’s nothing you’re likely able to do to fix the bad pen.

What is the future of the Sailor Jentle line. Are they limited edition? Has sailor hinted at discontinuing it some time in the future, because particularly for the Epinard I would be heartbroken if that were to happen. I read online somewhere that these are limited edition inks from spring 2010.

There was on series of limited edition Sailor inks (that came out just before we began carrying the brand back in 2010), but the inks we have currently, Epinard, Peche, Ultramarine, Apricot, Grenade, and Sky High have all been available regularly since they were released, and will be available for the foreseeable future as far as I know.

I’ve been thinking about getting BSB ink to go with a Edison Nouveau Premiere Blue Cobalt. Both are bright brilliant blue shades. I know the deeply staining capability of BSB, so I’m wondering if you’ve used this ink/pen combination, or if you know of somebody who has. I suspect that the converter will become stained, but I’m hoping that the pen itself will won’t be.

I’ve actually used BSB in my own cobalt Premiere with success. The ink does temporarily stain the converter and the feed, but cleaning with a 10% bleach in water solution cleans that up really well. The ink performed well in the pen and I saw no adverse effects.

for taking the time to read my emails! I’d love to hear what you think
in the comments. I’ll be compiling this coming week’s emails into next
week’s Mailbox Monday post!