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Home2019-08-07T13:45:27-05:00

2020 Holiday Order Deadlines

We’ve updated our shipping timelines as of 12/7/2020. We’re seeing unprecedented disruptions with all our shipping carriers and encourage you to order early and hold on loosely to all expectations of delivery timelines during this historic holiday season.

The holiday season is upon us! Wait, is that right? What month is it again? (Checks calendar) Oh yeah, okay, guess it is that time…whew, okay. Well, with that in mind, we wanted to make this blog post which outlines our order deadlines to help you receive your holiday orders in plenty of time (probably, I mean, it’s 2020 so who knows).

While we’re not able to guarantee particular delivery dates, everyone here at Goulet Pens is working as hard as we can to make sure things are out the door and on the way to you as quickly as possible. 2020 is certainly an exceptional year with wildly unpredictable shipping delays with every carrier, higher e-commerce holiday volume overall, and unpredictable staffing with COVID-19 impacts as we enter into the colder weather. With all that in mind, please expect our typical turnaround to be closer to 2-3 business days from when you place your order to when we ship it out. We normally aim for 1-2 business days, but we’re just trying to anticipate the unanticipatable (okay, that’s not a word but you get what we’re saying).

Gift Boxes

Shipping within the US for Christmas delivery:

  • Order by Friday, December 11th if you are shipping via USPS.
  • Order by Thursday, December 17th if you are shipping via FedEx 2-Day.
  • Order by Friday, December 18th if you are shipping via FedEx Overnight (overnight does not deliver on weekends).
  • All of these dates are estimates and not guarantees, we’re seeing unprecedented delays and complications due to COVID-19 and the increase in demand with shipping carriers. Your continued flexibility is greatly appreciated!

Shipping Internationally:

  • Basically, we encourage you to order ASAP. We cannot make any guarantees for delivery dates this year, as COVID-19 has caused unprecedented delays with both shipping carriers as well as customs clearance. We wish we could offer more certainty, but that’s just not something that’s in store for 2020. As always, please be aware delivery cannot be completed if customs duties/import taxes are not paid, and we are not responsible for any delay that failure to pay these duties may cause.

Bottom line: The sooner, the better when it comes to ordering your holiday gifts! And hey, worst case, we also offer e-gift cards which don’t have to be shipped at all!

Our office will be closed on December 24th and 25th to spend time with our families and recuperate from…well, this whole year. 😉

We’d love to help you as you shop so feel free to send us an email (info@gouletpens.com), live chat with us on GouletPens.com, or give us a call (804-368-0482) if we can help!

Happy Holidays & Write On,
Team Goulet

November 5th, 2020|A Goulet Life|0 Comments

JoWo OmniFlex Nib Introduction

 

In early 2018, the OmniFlex nib was first introduced on brands like Conklin and Monteverde. This is a stainless steel #6 size nib with a distinct shape and design to allow for increased softness, flexibility in the tines, and variation in line width based on your writing pressure. After going through iterative changes for the first several years and looking to increase their supply and quality of these nibs, the parent company Yafa embarked on a lengthy process involving significant investment of time and resources to get their nibs manufactured by the German nib company JoWo. JoWo (pronounced Yo-Vo) makes nibs for many of the brands you likely enjoy, including our very own Goulet nibs, so this was very welcome news to us when we heard about it.

But of course, with the announcement of any nib change come a lot of questions about how they perform and what to expect, especially when these nibs are coming on pens as attainable/affordable as the Monteverde and Conklins, many of which are sub-$50-100. So we wanted to give you a little bit of a preview of that here with these videos and this blog post. While we haven’t had the nibs long enough to do extensive tests over time, we feel confident enough to be able to give you a pretty good impression of what to expect so you can feel good about whether or not a pen with the JoWo-made OmniFlex is right for you.

Design:

Overall, the shape of the nibs are similar to the previous version. They’re made of stainless steel and have the same general shape and appearance that they used to with the cut out wings to increase the softness of the steel as the tines flex. The breather hole is now round instead of heart-shaped, and it has JoWo’s signature ornamentation (aka squiggles) like you see on other JoWo-made nibs. The stamped branding “OMNIFLEX” now goes vertically down the nib, though the fit and finish on the JoWo nibs is better. Here’s the original and new version for comparison:

Original OmniFlex nib design

Original non-JoWo OmniFlex nib

JoWo OmniFlex

JoWo OmniFlex Nib

They have a distinctly different appearance than the non-flex nibs offered by Monteverde and Conklin, pictured before. The non-flex versions of both brands of nibs changed over to JoWo manufacturing in late-2019, and have enjoyed a more consistent reputation for writing performance as a result. We anticipate a similar response to the JoWo OmniFlex.

Comparison image of the Conklin non-flex and OmniFlex nibsComparison of the Monteverde non-flex and OmniFlex nibs

OmniFlex Writing Performance:

Alright, so this is where we have to tread lightly, as any nib with the word flex associated with it in any way immediately sends pen fans into a fantasy world where they will effortlessly produce a  Spencerian or Copperplate script with no railroading or hard starting, with cupids playing harps flying about them feed them grapes. I’m sorry to say this isn’t the reality with flex of pretty much any kind (particularly with modern stainless steel nibs), so if you can get the dream sequence out of your head, you can enjoy a unique, practical nib within its limitations.

First, let’s explore how flex nibs work. As the ink flows down from the ink chamber through the feed and to the nib, it’s working by capillary action down a very thin channel that ends at the tip of the nib when it touches the paper. Properly tuned nibs will have a slit that tapers slightly from the breather hole to the tip to assist in this capillary action. When you’re flexing a nib, you’re pressing down on the nib, which bends the tines upwards and apart from each other, which essentially is a controlled deformation of the nib. If you do it within the physical boundaries of the metal’s reformation limits (known as “spring back”), the flow of ink will increase as you’re pressing these tines apart and then they will come back together where they originally were when you let up on that pressure.

Nib flexing

Old OmniFlex Nib In Action

Doing this produces a variation in your line width that gives a dynamic, calligraphic look to your writing that is hard to achieve in any other way. Traditional calligraphy achieves intense line variation in a similar way, though with slightly different tools. Calligraphers are often using oblique nib holders with disposable nibs made of spring steel (a softer, cheaper steel that does not last a fraction as long as stainless steel), and thicker calligraphy ink. It’s not uncommon for traditional calligraphers to stress flexible nibs to the point of springing them apart past the point of return, or even snapping the tines off from the weakening of the steel due to the intense pressure put on them. However, fountain pens aren’t designed with such an intense line variation in mind, and trying to produce this same dramatic writing is pretty much asking for trouble.

What you can realistically hope to achieve with a stainless steel flexible nib, and indeed from the JoWo OmniFlex nib specifically, is a line variation safely about double the width of the nib when unflexed. The OmniFlex is only available in one nib size and doesn’t specifically state the size, but we find it to write a line with (unflexed) comparable somewhere between a fine and medium in the JoWo-made Monteverde or Conklin nibs. We find it to be slightly broader than the previous version of the OmniFlex, which some of you may like, others, maybe not. It’ll be a matter of personal preference.

Writing sample of Conklin old flex vs new

Because the old version of the nib started a little finer, the line width appears slightly more dramatic. That said, when flexing the previous version of the OmniFlex, many writers found that the ink flow would be challenged to keep up consistently (which is the case with just about any flex nib), and it would take a concerted amount of pressure to get it to flex this much.

The JoWo OmniFlex feels smoother, more consistent, and takes less pressure to flex, which is a delight for an everyday writing experience. With some moderate pressure, this is a nib that just about anyone can enjoy with dependable performance. THAT SAID, if you are looking to use this nib to try to push it to its limits and get the most dramatic line variation possible, you’re likely to spring the tines past the point where they’ll come back together as they were set from the factory. You want to be very conscientious of how hard you’re pushing this nib, because it has limitations (as we’ve tried to show you in this video).

Pens currently available with the JoWo OmniFlex nibs:

It’s been well over a year in the making to bring these nibs to market. Yafa has made a significant investment of time and money to make this happen to improve the availability and reliability of the OmniFlex on their pens, and they are opening it up to basically every model under the Monteverde and Conklin brands (and potentially future brands). JoWo is still working on delivering their initial order of nibs, and the first ones rolling out in Oct 2020 are the polished stainless steel (silver color). The black nibs are now available as of January 2020, and we are still awaiting on the rose gold nibs, which have additional plating services required that will delay these nibs for an unknown period of time. With COVID being what it is, everything is subject to change.

They will also be offered as standalone nib units, so if you have an older Monteverde or Conklin pen, you are likely to be able to replace the nib unit with a JoWo OmniFlex if you’re so inclined, as the housing/threading has been intentionally kept consistent with the new nibs (the feeds are also the same, in case that matters to you).

Models you can expect to see available with the OmniFlex nibs include the following (as well as others perhaps not mentioned here):

You can view all our currently available JoWo Omniflex pen offerings here.

Final thoughts on old vs new OmniFlex nibs:

We’re incredibly excited for these new nibs, as it’s been a long time in the works and we expect the quality and consistency of JoWo to make these enjoyable for more pen fans than ever before. The new nibs are a slight compromise in terms of dramatic line variation from the old version, but kept within its boundaries, we find it to be a smoother, softer, more enjoyable experience overall. Flex writing isn’t necessarily for everyone, and it should be approached with an attitude of open-mindedness of writing technique and paper/ink selection, willingness to practice, and intentionality around how flex writing is performed. With that said, we think you’ll really enjoy this nib as an everyday performer that can give you some flare and dynamism to your personal writing style and we think it’s worth exploring if you’re into that.

OmniFlex writing sample

For more information about OmniFlex and the pen offered with these nibs on it, be sure to visit GouletPens.com

Write On,

Brian Goulet and the Goulet Pens Team

October 27th, 2020|Pen News, Pen Reviews, Tips & Tricks|0 Comments

Conklin Endura Abalone Pen

We’re excited to announce the new arrival of the Conklin Endura Abalone. It’s crafted with real Abalone shell from New Zealand, covered in a clear round resin. The inner shell of the abalone is a whirl of intense colors, ranging from dark blue and bright green to purples, creams, and pinks. Hand-turned and hand-polished, the barrel brilliantly reflects shimmering light off of its surface, enhancing the stunning colors of the abalone shell. It comes available in two trim colors, with the rose gold trim available worldwide and the chrome trim available exclusively at Goulet Pens.

Your choice of luminous rose gold or silver plating adorns the traditional clip, band, and trim, enhancing the elegance of each pen.

Each Endura is offered with your choice of a reliable, smooth-writing German made JoWo #6 silver steel or black steel nib in extra-fine, fine, medium, broad, or 1.1mm stub, or the new JoWo rose-plated or silver Omniflex flexible steel nib for variation in line width.

Each Conklin Endura comes in a gift box with two standard international short ink cartridges, 1 blue and 1 black, a standard international converter, and is warrantied for life by Conklin’s Limited Lifetime Warranty. Both of the pens are limited editions and individually numbered, in each trim, out of 1898 worldwide.

Our note about the JoWo Omniflex nib: This flex nib will allow you to experience more bounce and softness than writing with conventional nibs. You can achieve some line variation with a little additional downward pressure, to a point. We recommend flexing the nib to about twice the line width that you would see without using any pressure. Please take care to avoid pressing too hard on the nib, as over-flexing could prevent the tines from returning fully to their original position and decrease or stop your ink flow.

 

For more detailed specs, additional pictures, and reviews, be sure to visit Conklin Endura Abalone on our website.

Write On,

The Goulet Pen Company

October 20th, 2020|Pen News, Pen Reviews|0 Comments

Introducing the Stipula Adagio Fountain Pen

Stipula Adagio Fountain Pen Light Blue

The new Stipula collection comes from the praise of the slowness that in great music takes its name “Adagio.” A slow and relaxed time that reconciles with reflection and calmness. This pen comes in 4 colors with a unique faceted resin body, the Purple being a Goulet-exclusive. The pen body and cap have eight facets, with resin materials rich in unexpected opalescence and nuances with translucent and discreetly luminescent features in the dark: Light Blue, Purple, Amber, and Seagreen.

Stipula Adagio Fountain Pen Purple

Each pen has a metal grip, a threaded cap, and silver trim. It fills via built-in piston mechanism, and utilizes a #6 steel nib.

Stipula Adagio Fountain Pen Amber

The reliable high performance steel nib is available in fine, medium, and 1.1mm stub. This fountain pen has a fixed piston operated by the rotating knob, firm and solid in the hands of its user. Due to the threaded cap and the faceted body, we do not recommend posting this pen.

Stipula Adagio Fountain Pen Seagreen

Which Stipula Adagio Fountain Pen will you add to your collection?

Write On,

The Goulet Pen Company

September 9th, 2020|Pen News, Pen Reviews|0 Comments

Welcome the Conklin All American Courage Limited Edition Fountain Pen

Conklin All American Courage Fountain Pens

The limited edition Conklin All American Courage collection consists of three distinctive fountain pens in Red, White, and Graphite resins, and each pen is individually numbered out of 1898. The collection is paying tribute to courageous front line responders.

Conklin All American Courage Black

A unique middle ring adorns a color-filled engraving of a heartbeat, and the trademark Rocker Clip allows you to easily secure the pen to a shirt or coat pocket. Don’t miss the new clip design that features the very famous rod of Asclepius, and the symbol of Hippocrates’ oath plated in rose gold trim on the Conklin All American Courage Graphite (Black), gunmetal trim on the Conklin All American Courage White, and silver trim on the Conklin All American Courage Red.

Conklin All American Courage White

Conklin All American Courage Red

Each pen is offered with your choice of a reliable, smooth-writing German made JoWo #6 black steel nib in extra-fine, fine, medium, broad, or 1.1mm stub, or the black Omniflex flexible steel nib for variation in line width. A customized ink bottle will be included with each fountain pen and every purchase will include a commemorative lapel pin in the shape of the Hippocrates’ oath.

Conklin All American Courage Black

You will also receive the pen in a specifically designed deluxe luxury gift box. Wear it with pride and display your gratitude for all courageous front line responders.

Will you add the Conklin All American Courage pen to your collection?

Write On,

The Goulet Pen Company

August 31st, 2020|Pen News, Pen Reviews|0 Comments

The New Sailor Compass 1911 Fountain Pen

Sailor Compass 1911 Fountain Pens

The new Sailor Compass 1911, previously available in Japan under the name “Profit Jr.,” is an excellent entry level fountain pen to the Sailor brand for under $50. Lightweight resin, and comfortable in hand, the Compass has a classic cigar shape that comes in 9 different colors: Transparent Olive, Transparent Brown, Transparent Green, Transparent Red, Transparent Blue, Transparent Pink, Transparent Purple, Transparent Clear, and Transparent Yellow. Each pen includes a converter with a piston knob that matches the color of the pen. This pen has been available previously in Japan under the name “Profit Jr.,” but is now available in the U.S. as the Compass 1911.

Sailor Compass 1911 Transparent Olive

The demonstrator style showcases a clear feed that allows you to watch the ink as it pushes to the proprietary stainless steel nib (only available in Medium Fine) that is manufactured in Japan. The medium fine nib will write comparably to most European fine nibs from brands like LAMY, and you can compare our writing sample of the Compass to other pens in our Nib Nook comparison tool. The polished silver trim ring is proudly engraved with Sailor Made in Japan, and the clip shape is comparable to the 1911.

Sailor Compass 1911 Transparent Purple

Each pen comes with two black proprietary ink cartridges that make it easy and convenient to refill as needed. The stainless steel nib is firm, and is smooth, but with some feedback when you write. The ink flows consistently but writes a bit on the dry side, which will be perfect for writing on everyday paper. It’s not a gusher, so it’s not likely to show off your high shading or shimmering inks as well as wetter-writing pens, but this is a very solid everyday carry pen. Please note, the Compass cannot be eyedropper filled and will leak from the end of the barrel if you try!

Sailor Compass 1911 Transparent Brown

Sailor Compass 1911 Transparent Yellow

Sailor Compass 1911 Transparent Blue

The Sailor Compass 1911 is a worthwhile consideration for entry to the Sailor brand or a fountain pen newbie. For under $50, you get a total package that includes your pen color of choice, the proprietary stainless steel nib, a matching color converter, and a set of 2 ink cartridges presented in a gift box.

What is your favorite thing about this pen?

Write On,

The Goulet Pen Company

August 27th, 2020|Pen News, Pen Reviews|0 Comments
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