In this Goulet Q&A episode, Brian talks about 3D printed pens, what makes pens “heirloom quality”, and clipless pens.

This week:

Pens/Writing

1) abbyknitz- Instagram (09:41)

Has anyone tried 3d printing a fountain pen?

  • Additive is the only pen being sold right now that I know for sure is 3D printed
  • Yoshi Nakama of pen.18111 used 3D printing, I believe in some component of his elaborate roll stops
  • It’s possible there are others and I’m not aware?
  • 3D printing technology is something I’ve been surprised hasn’t come up more with pen manufacturers, I’m curious to see if it’s something that gets adopted into the fountain pen industry

2) mollysmomma2010- Instagram (13:53)

What is your recommendation for an “heirloom” caliber pen? Something you can love and use and will stand the test of time?

  • I think a LOT of fountain pens would probably fall into this group, just the category of FP’s overall denote more longevity and quality than what most associated with pens
  • A rough estimate would put most pens over $100 immediately into that category
  • certainly Preppies, Varsities and Shark Pens aren’t what you’d consider “heirloom”, but I’d say most pens could be
  • Pretty much anything with a gold or palladium nib could easily be, and even nicer steel nibs like Edison, Herbert, Montegrappa, Visconti, etc
  • Namiki for sure, Pineider, Visconti, Montegrappa, Aurora, Lamy 2000, certainly any LE or themed pens would be collectibles like heirlooms

3) Heather W- Facebook (18:24)

I’m thinking of buying a metal Kaweco sport and would like to know your thoughts on the aluminum version versus the brass version.

  • the two are not vastly different from each other, they’re both solid metals
  • both cartridge or Kaweco converter (mini) only, no eyedropper
  • very solid, very durable
  • brass will be a little heavier, certainly something to consider for a pocket pen
  • brass will patina a little more than aluminum, which really won’t change much
  • brass will be a little pricier, closer to $100
  • The aluminum pens have a “softer” finish to them, feel very silky, lots of color options
  • brass is just brass, and will look like yellow brass
  • both really nice pens, just depends if you specifically want that “brass” look, or not

4) mountaincavalier- Instagram (22:39)

Why don’t more manufacturers offer clipless options?

  • good question, you really don’t see many of them, do you?
  • some of it’s practicality, I think most people just prefer having clips, if not for clipping them then for having built in rollstops
  • more liability for the pen company, if the pen rolls off a desk and breaks
  • they really could do more, especially because it’s so much cheaper and easier to make them
  • I’d REALLY love some feedback on this, how do you all feel about clipless pens? Which are your favorite and why?

Ink

5) newatthisig- Instagram (28:31)

Since cartridges are not labeled, what color cartridges come standard with most fountain pens?

  • It’s going to vary from brand to brand, honestly.
  • pen companies that make their own cartridges are using their own, usually black, sometimes blue, or both
  • companies that don’t make their own cartridges, it’s sometimes a total mystery what ink is in those cartridges, as they’re more or less buying bulk unbranded cartridges
  • that’s one thing we try to find out, and we post it on our site when we know, but we don’t always, and sometimes can’t even find out
  • It’s usually an afterthought from all parties involved

Personal

6) Shilo M- Facebook (33:38)

What do you guys think about the Goulet Nation and all the shenanigans we get up to? What are the things that have really surprised you about this mob?

  • hahaha, what a great group, I have to say
  • it’s the internet, and a very passionate group so it’s certainly fertile soil for drama and magic at the same time
  • there’s way more magic than drama, honestly
  • I was surprised to see the group create their own name (Penablers) and sports-style logo, that was awesome, and they buy and wear t-shirts with them!
  • I was warmhearted when a member lost their home and everything they owned in the California Wildfires last year, and the Penablers sent them tons of pens to help them get back on their feet, at least pen-wise!
  • They’ve created bingo cards for the different Goulet team member handwritten thank you cards, that was unexpected
  • people showing their collections, their wish lists, etc
  • The most surprising thing I’ve seen has been how kind everyone is, there are little things here and there that come up, but it really has become sort of like a safe haven for pen folks on the internet
  • many members have exclaimed that it’s the only thing they value about Facebook, and they would cancel their account otherwise!
  • There is a lot of kindness, generosity, and care in the pen world, and this community demonstrates that well

QOTW: If you could have a tree in your yard that could grow any one single meal that you couldn’t sell, only eat for yourself and your family, what would it grow? (39:58)

Write On,
Brian Goulet