In this Goulet Q&A episode, Brian talks about how to hold a pen, what’s up with grey inks, and advanced pen videos.

This week:


1) ammshorb- Instagram (18:41)
I’ve heard you can use the TWSBI mini nib units on the classic, is this true?

  • yes and no
  • you can remove the nib from the grip and swap it, yes
  • the feed is delicate, so be cautious
  • the nibs themselves are the same size
  • it’s a “hack” to be able to swap them, and technically you can
  • TWSBI wouldn’t love me saying you can do that, because you’ll likely go to them if you break something, so take that disclaimer with it

2) Dawn L- Facebook (23:45)
Which pen brands need a modified bulb syringe to clean/flush the pen?

3) aboutthatbook- Instagram (29:57)
Hi! I’m new in fountain pens and I’m coming from the dip pen hobby. I was wondering if there’s a right way to hold the fountain pen (like dip pens). Btw, love the videos and the blog. I’m learning so much, so thank you!

  • there’s no one perfect way to hold it, everyone has a different style
  • generally speaking, holding the pen at about a 45 degree angle with a three-finger grip, writing with little pressure
  • place the heel of your hand on the paper, and use a combination of wrist and arm movement to make your letters
  • the most important thing is to not over-rotate the pen, and don’t write with hard pressure

4) timeheldmegreen- Instagram (36:13)
Is the Invincia a good pen? I’ve seen mixed reviews and hubby wants one for Christmas

  • it’s good for some, less so for others
  • I’ve always been a fan, it tends to be more of a big-handers pen, a gentleman’s pen if you will
  • being completely honest, some people don’t like the slick grip, and the nibs can run a little dry
  • Yafa has a good warranty, we’ll totally back it up, but it’s just kind of how these pens are
  • if it’s for casual writing and more of a desk pen, and your husband likes it, then go for it
  • it’s been Monteverde’s mainstay pen for probably 10+ years now

5) m_moulvi- Instagram (39:26)
Will the new Lamy Aion nibs be available for separate purchase?

  • not at this point
  • I wouldn’t suspect so, it’s a lot of extra distribution globally for a slight aesthetic
  • they will swap with standard Lamy nibs
  • I’ll ask in Germany!

6) Christopher F- Facebook (41:09)
I’m thankful that you took the time to do your Fountain pens for newbies, next level and gold nib videos, as they were contributing factors for me getting into the hobby. I’m curious though, would you be willing to do an Advanced level video?

  • awesome! glad you love them
  • most definitely, I would have to think about what that looks like
  • what “advanced” pen knowledge would you like?
  • we’ve definitely talked about redoing Fountain Pen 101, that will happen
  • Andi’s here and we’re already talking about it

7) Lindsey B- Facebook (47:10)
What is up with Grey inks? I’m a recent fountain pen addict and I’ve noticed a ton of varying levels of grey inks. Is this a color bought by artists or do people actually want that look as they write? I would think people would want to shift away from a graphite kind of look since they are using a pen unless they are doing art. Thanks for your videos. I’ve binged probably a good 90% of them.

  • haha, right?
  • Grey inks have ebbed and flowed in popularity
  • part of the appeal is they’re understated, more subtle
  • nice grey inks will shade, that’s a lot of it
  • some will look close to graphite, true, and some people really like that because they like the look of pencil but like writing with a pen better
  • the honest truth is I don’t 100% know, I like grey inks, don’t end up using them a whole ton
  • Earl Grey was chosen by the Fountain Pens subreddit as the color they wanted, Diamine opened it up to other retailers like us, it’s been popular!
  • It might be worth trying some samples of it if you’re curious
  • Diamine Earl Grey, Diamine Graphite, Noodler’s Lexington Gray, J. Herbin 1670 Stormy Grey, Noodler’s El Lawrence
QOTW: What pen do you most regret not acquiring when you had the chance? (53:57)

Write On,
Brian Goulet