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In this episode, I show you my ink collection, talk about which pens I would want to see resurrected, and what makes a pen SING!

This past week:

New/Upcoming Products: (1:53)

Pens/Writing – (5:18)

1) Ryan M.- Facebook – (5:19)
What is more important in a smooth Fountain Pen? The feed or the nib? Or is it a bit of both??

  • definitely more to do with the nib than the feed
  • the grind and alignment of the nib affect the feel of the pen a lot
  • the weight, size, and material of the pen can obviously impact feel, too
  • feed is all about flow and volume of ink, which is more of a factor for appearance of ink on the page than the tactile feel
  • where the feed can impact feel is if you have to adjust your writing pressure lighter or heavier because of the flow, which can exacerbate the strain on the nib (and usually increase the feeling of drag or scratchiness)

2) Preston S.- Facebook – (7:33)
Do you find that writing with a fountain pen necessitates a faster writing tempo vs other writing instruments, or is this only true in cases of cheap paper &/or ‘wet pens’?

  • I wouldn’t say in necessitates it, no
  • the ink will flow to match your writing speed, this is what the fins of the feed are for (regulate ink flow)
  • cheap paper will absorb more ink so cause the spread to be greater on the page
  • writing faster can help with this somewhat, but it’s pretty much going to happen anyway
  • this is more of an issue of making sure you have the right nib size for you
  • if you’re writing faster than you’re comfortable just because the ink is absorbing too quickly into the paper, it’s much better to change the nib size or paper you’re using to fit your writing than the other way around.

3) Jon A.- Facebook – (11:03)
Which discontinued pen would you like to see return? Also ink?

  • this is tough! There are so many
  • Disclaimer: I’m not a vintage pen fanatic, and I will likely overlook some of the tried and true classics or gems out there, keep that in mind
  • Sheaffer Snorkel is really cool, but totally impractical in today’s economic environment
  • Parker 51 is awesome, very cool
  • Pilot m90, recent acquisition of mine and I think the integrated nib is just awesome
  • I’m really going to push Pilot to bring this pen back, it isn’t impossible
  • Monteverde Invincia Nighthawk…gotta throw that in there

Ink – (15:54)

4) Natalie B.- Facebook – (15:56)
How long do ink manufacturers keep making a particular ink? If you see an ink you like, should you buy it right away in case it is never made again? If you have a favorite ink, should you buy a lifetime supply? For example… the shimmertastic line and the iroshizuku line. Thanks!

  • this varies a lot
  • most of the time, we know ahead of time when it will be limited
  • if it’s regular, it’ll usually be around for years and years, it’s rare that it runs out spontaneously
  • limited colors are often advertised that way (Ed. Ink of the Year, Lamy special edition colors), and those are much more hit or miss
  • the limited colors you usually want to jump right on
  • things like Shimmertastic and Iroshizuku are available for the foreseeable future, but maybe not forever. Stock up as you see fit

5) hobbiesandthings- Instagram – (21:08)  
Is there an ink that is similar to the Lamy Dark lilac?

6) j1448- Instagram – (23:08)
Hi Brian- I know in the past you’ve made videos showing us your extensive pen collection. You have mentioned that your main reason for getting into fountain pens was to be able to experiment with different inks. I’m curious as to what your ink collection might look like/ how you organize your ink.

  • sure! I have regular inks and older LE inks (that I don’t use as much)
  • It’s not very organized!

7) Chris V.- Facebook – (34:31)
Hey Brian , I am currently in the pursuit for the “best” light aqua/teal/blue ink. I am currently using the Waterman Inspired Blue Ink and I would like to know what is best ink that will pop out of the page in that color range. I also value dry time so is there a trade-off between how much a ink pops out vs how quickly it dries. Thanks

  • Inspired Blue is great, that’s a good all-around ink for sure
  • My personal favorite is Diamine Marine (a little greener though)
  • Noodler’s Navajo Turquoise
  • Private Reserve Tropical Blue
  • Lamy Turquoise
  • in terms of what “pops” that will have a lot to do with saturation
  • the more saturated an ink, the longer it usually takes to dry as dye evaporates much slower than water, and usually has added lubricants which also extend dry time

Troubleshooting – (37:25)

8) jr.pancake- Instagram – (37:28)
I am having difficulty with J. Herbin supple wickless sealing wax sticking to my seal. I have tried moistening the seal with breath, even dipping it in water, but the wax still wants to stick to the seal. Do you have any other ideas I can try to get a reliable, clean release from the seal?

  • this can definitely happen, especially with very intricate seals, and ones not machined well
  • moisture helps, sure
  • they will stick more the hotter the seal is, like doing repeated seals
  • the best trick I’ve found is to cool the seal on an ice pack before using it, also great for doing multiple seals in a row

9) spydhole- Instagram – (40:27)
How do I stop a nib from singing?

  • singing is caused by a nib that is dragging on the paper and vibrating at the exact resonant frequency of the nib, not unlike a bowstring on a violin
  • in extreme cases, it can actually atomize the ink and cause a broader line or spattering of ink on the paper
  • it’s a complex issue that can be caused by basically all factors that relate to the friction causing it (the paper, the nib length, grind and polishing)
  • it can be tuned, but it’s usually done best by someone who can figure out exactly what’s causing it
  • new pens, return it if it’s too bothersome for you
  • non-warrantied pens, check alignment and tuning first
  • smoothing with micromesh/mylar often fixes it

QOTW: Which discontinued pen would you like to see made available again today? – (47:58)

Thanks so much for joining me this week! You can catch up on any old Q&A videos you missed here.

Write On,
Brian Goulet