This week marks the 4th Goulet Q&A, and to mix things up a bit I decided to focus on the topic “Getting into the fountain pen hobby”. I’ve done a number of Fountain Pen 101 videos intended for the beginners in our fountain pen world, and my motivation for them was to make it easier to get a start than what I experienced when I was trying to figure it all out myself years ago. This Q&A is intended to ‘fill the gaps’ of anything I might have missed in those videos, and answer any questions you have that I didn’t think to include.

Here are this week’s questions:

1) VallivueLaxPlayer- YouTube (2:45):
What are some of the best ways to convince people that fountain pens are worth it?

  • Judge your audience
  • Romatic appeal
  • Passionate/unique community
  • Cost effectiveness
  • Color/fun ink selection
  • Personality
  • Environmental consciousness
  • Status

2) DjentleDjiant- YouTube (6:24):
What would be some decent inks (blue, black, etc) for people who are getting into fountain pens to check out?

  • Brian’s sampler set: 
  • Noodler’s Black
  • Noodler’s Black Swan in Australian Roses
  • Diamine Ancient Copper
  • Diamine Majestic Blue
  • Diamine Red Dragon
  • Noodler’s 54th Massachusetts
  • Noodler’s Liberty’s Elysium
  • Rohrer and Klingner Scabiosa
  • Noodler’s Apache Sunset
  • Noodler’s Blue Ghost

3) The Pen Pixie- YouTube (8:12):
I just got a gift of $500. What fountain(s) pen do you suggest? For reference, I like the Pilot Metropolitan for an everyday writer. I also like a bit of an italic nib and prefer a smooth writing experience. I like a smaller grip section and find the Lamy Safari grip fatiguing. What fountain pen(s) do you suggest?

4) Foxclass- YouTube (10:57):
I’m new to fountain pens, and just grabbed a medium nib Pilot Prera (absolutely love it). For next week’s video how about some suggestions for a good follow up purchase to expand my stationery collection? What would be a good way to continue the hobby – a notebook? Some ink? Things like that!

5) Brian Fourroux- Facebook (14:09):I’m just getting started in the hobby and one of the things I love is the diversity and variation that exists in the FP world. What 5 relatively inexpensive (<$75) pens would you recommend a newbie work towards to get a good, overarching experience of all the fun things fountain pens can do? Maybe talk about different nibs and inks to go with those pens if you have time.

6) Dionne C- YouTube (17:14): 
I am so new to this hobby that I just bought my first pens, a Pilot varsity, Platinum preppy and a Lamy Safari. I was wondering can you store ink in the converter and then just change that out when you want a new color? Looking forward to playing with my pens when they get here.

7) @fmfisdead- Twitter (19:19):
Is it bad to use up an ink completely in a pen? Overheard at DC you shouldn’t let it run completely to the end.

8) PapaKuma- Ink Nouveau (20:48):
What would you recommend to someone who would like to use a fountain pen but is left handed? What makes a left handed nib a left handed nib and do they provide a dramatic change in usability for lefties? (p.s. any chance of getting the lamy LH nibs back in stock, they have been unavailable for a long time now)

9) Matt Lasley- email (24:33):
What are the Permanent &/or semi-permanent inks in stock? Noodlers’ line is clear. What are others that are permanent. Most of the other inks I like are just not permanent, and maybe I’ll get over permanence as a criteria. Knowing, say for Diamine, what inks are permanent would be good. Even if it’s only partially permanent, I’ve noticed there’s rock-solid permanent, then there’s the ones that will smear but still leave a permanent line (gets ugly when wet, but does not lose the writing) and then there’s the non permanent that washes away and does lose what was written. I can see myself compromising to accept a mid-permanent ink for one that I really like.

  • water resistant inks here

10) Hans Packer-Facebook (28:40):
Have you ever commented on how someone might decide on a nib size? I have always bought medium, but I am considering a Delta Fusion 82, and I am feeling like being daring and getting a broad nib. I just was wondering your thoughts on pros and cons for different nib sizes.

For next week’s video on Friday, Sept. 20th I’ll go with the theme “Ink”. You can ask me anything you want to know about fountain pen ink, ink brands, properties, how to choose the right ink, anything along those lines. You can ask the question in the comments on this video. You can also check out previous episodes of Goulet Q&A here.

Write On,
Brian Goulet