This is a very special Q&A! This blog post marks the 1,000th blog post I’ve published since starting back in January 2010. It’s incredible to think that I’ve had that much to talk about, but even more amazing that you’ve been keeping up with everything I’ve had to say! Thank you so, so much for supporting me, my blog, and my company (that pays for this blog!).
As a special thanks and something fun to do, I’m giving away one brand new Edison Nouveau Premiere 2014 Seasonal Fall in Autumn Harvest. It’s a $149 pen and I’ll ship it to you (no charge) anywhere that USPS ships. The winner will get to select their nib of choice, EF, F, M, B, 1.1mm, or 1.5mm stub.
You can enter to win it simply by commenting below in this blog post by answering the following question: “How has the Ink Nouveau blog helped to enhance your writing experience?”

To qualify, comment by 11:59 EDT on Wednesday September 10, 2014. I’ll be selecting the winner at random and announcing who it is in next week’s Q&A (September 12). I’ll also post a reply to the winner’s comment (from this blog post) just to show for certain who it is I’ve selected. Once I announce the winner, it will be up to you to reply to me at to claim your prize.

Edison Nouveau Premiere in Autumn Harvest, 2014 Fall Seasonal Edition


I’m really eager to see how my little blog here has impacted your life. I know fountain pens have completely change my world, and I never, ever could have imaged that I’d be sitting here today sharing my 1,000th blog post with you. Incredible. Now here are this week’s questions:

1) Tristan N.- Facebook (7:18):

What will be the first fountain pen for your kids? Allow me to expand my question: their first fountain pen and their first “real” fountain pen. Because I think at first you’ll let them be using Preppies or Varsities.

  • great question!
  • kids are 2 and 4, so I have some time to contemplate
  • Varsity would be great, probably ideal
  • nicer pen, whatever is their favorite color (they’d be more likely to use it!!)
2) Shawn J.- Facebook (9:09):
J. Herbin 1670 Stormy Grey, any news on when this will be over here?
  • Don’t have an exact date yet, but we’re told late-October, subject to change of course
  • We have it on order, will get it right when it’s available
  • I do have a pen inked up with it! Looks pretty dang awesome
3) Anja R.- Facebook (13:26):
Hi Brian! Can you recommend an ink to match the 2011 Lamy LE Aquamarine fountain pen please? Thank you so much! 

I really appreciate all you and your team do to keep us well informed. (I think I’ve watched all the Q&A’s by now but don’t recall this question being asked before.) Thank you!

4) Enrique V.- Facebook (14:47):

Is the Lamy Logo’s cap fully sealed? I intended to use Noodler’s Black in it, but I read in a review that the cap isn’t air-tight, so bulletproof inks might dry out in the pen. Is it true, and if it is, is Noodler’s Black (or other bulletproof inks) safe to use with the Logo?

  • not fully sealed like Platinum 3776, but it seals pretty good
  • Not all Noodler’s bulletproof inks perform the same in terms of drying on the nib
  • Noodler’s Black actually does pretty well
  • Could always try Black Eel (lubricated) to last longer
  • I personally haven’t had a huge problem, but I’m in a humid environment
  • the drier your climate, the more it might dry out
5) Junee L.- Facebook (17:23):

Sometimes after filling the pen with certain inks I would notice that the feed takes on a green or blue tint. As far as I know it’s not harmful but what causes it? See image for clarification:

  • some inks do this, especially purples and pinks
  • nothing to be worried about, it’s pretty normal
  • ink dye is crystalizing, causing iridescence that you don’t normally see on paper because the surface is too irregular
  • on pen feeds it’s usually a flatter surface
6) Shawn D.- Facebook (19:30):

Can you talk a bit about the new De Atramentis document inks? I know you are probably going to do a video about them at some point soon, but I have two specific questions: (1) What is the difference between the black and the archive inks? and (2) Is the permanence cellulose reactive, similar to Noodler’s? Love the website and the service!

  • black and archive are REALLY close, chemically I can’t say what the difference is
  • black seems ever so slightly darker, but you’d probably never know the difference
  • honestly don’t know the chemical makeup!
  • dries really fast (like pigmented ink), and is known to be lightfast
  • my guess would be pigmented, but I just don’t know that for sure
7) Benjamin S.- Facebook (23:31):

My one Konrad flows more reliably than any Ahab I own. Is that generally true, or is it just true in my case, in your opinion?

  • not always the case
  • the nib and feed setup is actually exactly the same on both pens
  • probably has to do with the adjustment of the nib/feed on each pen
  • try heat-setting your Ahab, video: Heat setting a Noodler’s ebonite feed

8) Steven Littell- YouTube (25:50):
What is your favorite pen?

  • has long been Pilot Custom 74 in blue, medium nib
  • honestly though, I’m changing it up more these days, using other pens
  • Lamy 2000 is a standby
  • Pilot Metro in fine
  • Waterman Carene recent infatuation, don’t even sell that regularly! Who knows

9) Cara B.- Facebook/TheThildy10- YouTube (28:16):

What fountain pen do you absolutely not like and why?

10) Allan B.- Facebook (30:57):

Question: What is the best way to store an inked-up Pilot Vanishing Point nib assembly? I would like to figure out an easy to swap them back and fourth. Write on brother!

  • best way? Clean and empty :)
  • or in a pen!
  • yeah, unfortunately it’s just gonna dry out otherwise
11) Sean K.- Facebook (33:52):

I have two Pilot Prera demonstrators with fine nibs. I’ve been having a hard time with them feeding the ink. I’ve taken the feed and nib out of the grip to clean them before, so I’m curious if there’s a specific way to put the nib and feed back in, or if there’s something I could try to get them flowing again.

  • the nib fits on a specific way to the feed
  • the nib and feed just push into the pen, in any orientation
  • flow could be several things, check alignment of the tines
  • hold up to light to see if any light shines through the tip of the nib slit
  • if no light at all, tines are too tight restricting flow
  • flex the tines a bit to spread them, but be careful
  • these pens write finer than most, and put down less ink usually, so it may just be that you’re not liking the way the pen is supposed to write (hard to say)

12) Tim K.- Facebook (38:18):I just got my order in from you! Your staff is so nice! Do you give them cake or pie for being such good employees? Also, Madigan wrote me a note, it was really great! Keep it up guys!

  • thank you, Tim! Haha
  • updated cake or pie vote around the Goulet shop, pie DOMINATED to my disappointment
  • haven’t ever served pie here, though!
  • have done cake, for special occasions
13) Wei-Tsung L.- Facebook (39:39):

Which version of Falcon will you pick? Resin or metal?

  • personally, I like the price of the resin but prefer the weight of the metal!
  • I personally own several resins, no metals
14) Tommy N.- Facebook (40:49):

Do you have any tips or ideas regarding mixing the basic (not polar or eel) noodler’s inks?

  • Noodler’s “normal” inks all mix just fine with each other, go nuts
  • stick to small amounts, 2-3ml at a time as you experiment
  • measure with ink sample vials and ink syringes
  • let sit outside of pen for several hours before inking up
    • just in case of strange reaction
  • can certainly mix non-“normal” Noodler’s inks with normals (except Baystates)
    • properties will mix according to your ratio
15) Jamie M.- Facebook (44:37):When using paper pads, like the top-staple-bound Rhodia’s in a context where you would want to hold onto your notes or write on the backs of pages (like in a college classroom) is there any easy trick to doing this that isn’t immediately obvious? Or, more to anyone, is there a makeshift or even DIY type way to hold onto the sheets after you rip them out? 

It’s just pads seem like the most common way to sell paper with the most variety but even outside of a classroom I tend to write things in a manner more suited to a spiral-bound notebook. I want to use pads, but they don’t really seem to fit my method at first glance and I wish I could change that.

  • fair enough!
  • I don’t know of any magical solution
  • I personally use a mix of pads, spirals, and journals
  • I keep pads around my office for quick notes and lists
  • spirals for slightly longer-term yet still disposable notes
  • journals for more serious note taking like journaling, taking notes from books I read, notes from homilies, etc
    • things I want to lost a long time

16) Erik H.- Facebook (47:16):

I’m in the army and I want a pen for the field. Any thoughts? Please dont say the Schrade Tactical Fountain Pen. It is sturdy, but akward.

17) Zheng Z. – Facebook (50:02):
I was wondering if there are any crisp italic nibs/pens on the market. Everything seems to be a stub and the only pen that seems to allow me to write in clean gothic style seems to be the pilot parallel, which has it’s own drawbacks. I own a TWSBI 580 with a 1.1 stub and it simply cannot make the clean edges I want when practicing calligraphy.
  • yeah, I can’t name a single company that grinds a crisp italic
  • they’d basically be crazy too, since they’d probably get returns on every one of them for scratchiness!
  • custom grind/vintage will be your way to go

18) Steven K.- Facebook (52:00):Can I do any damage to my pens if I always apply some Silicon Grease to the threads of my pens after I refill them. Just thinking about stopping any possible leakage; going that extra 110% that you often speak of. I’m not necessarily using an O ring, just the Grease. And is a Grease application even necessary to do, or am I just wasting product? BTW, I’m talking about pens with a converter, not a cartridge, and not an eyedropper conversion either.

  • that’s probably overkill
  • you’re not causing any harm, though
  • silicone grease is inert and will be fine on the pen
  • grease will help squeaky threads to stop making noise, and allow threads to glide more smoothly
  • grease is used as 1) a lubricant and 2) a sealant, for eyedropper pens that you fill with ink
    • you’re not benefitting from 2) , so it’s just lubricating for you
Thank you to everyone who asked me questions this week. Be sure to check here for any old Q&A’s you might have missed and don’t forget to comment for the contest. Have a great week!
Write On,
Brian Goulet