Fountain pen users, rejoice!

Ulenspiegel

macrumors 68040
Nov 8, 2014
3,142
2,350
Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
I feel the same way actually. For a little while I thought I liked a fine nib the best, but once I bought the Italix Churchman's Prescriptor with an italic nib I fell in love with the flow and the nuanced line variations it makes. I actually enjoy that slight bit of flare it makes as I write.

The only things I don't like about this Italix is that there is a huge step down from the barrel to the section that I could do without. As much as I love the nib, it is a hard starter and takes a couple of sentences before the flow and smoothness really kick in. But once it does it's great to write with and I don't want to stop.

I am looking around for other pens that offer an italic or oblique nib and Lamy seems to offer some so I am looking at those right now.
I hear you.
Lamy makes wonderful pens.
For the past several decades I have tried many brands, but nothing came close to Montblanc (with medium nib).
So, this hobby of mine is dying as I settled with Montblanc for good. :)
 
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willentrekin

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2013
235
167
US
This would be my first fountain ink pen, what do you think of this brand I found on Amazon?

https://smile.amazon.com/Antonio-Parra-Fountain-Calligraphy-Writing/dp/B01N2VXOVV/ref=sr_1_5?crid=26S05TBBFW01P&keywords=nakaya+fountain+pen&qid=1552837083&s=gateway&sprefix=Nakaya+,aps,156&sr=8-5

I do not want to spend a lot of money on one because I am not sure I would like writing with it, or use it that much. If I do like it, I would get a more expensive pen and start a collection. If you gentleman have any other suggestions that are not that expensive, I would appreciate it. Thank you in advance for your help.

:apple:
Pilot Metropolitan.

https://www.amazon.com/Pilot-Metropolitan-Collection-Fountain-91111/dp/B00KRPFD96/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=pilot+metropolitan&qid=1552842213&s=gateway&sr=8-3

Similar price, great pen. It was the pen that jumpstarted my collection; I was given a Montblanc as a gift, but it wasn't an everyday writer sort of pen. And if you like it, their 74 is one of the less expensive 14k nib pens available -- and there are lots of options in between.
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
25,799
8,777
Detroit
I've been writing with a new ink called Diamine Blue Velvet which comes in a 40ml inkwell. I just love this ink a lot! It's depth and richness of the color blue is amazing. I've had it in my medium nib Monteverda pen for a week and today I put it in my Italix Churchman's pen. The ink writes just as smooth as the Montblanc ink and is a dream as it glides over the pages of my Clairefontaine notebook. I love this Blue Velvet color far better than the Montblanc Royal Blue and it's $10 less expensive too.

The only downside to the ink is when you're refilling, if you get any on you, it isn't easy to wash off.

The Italix Churchman's nib is by far my favorite of all my pens and with this lovely ink inside of it I just don't want to stop writing once I get started. But alas, Puma (my cat) is demanding my attention and I need to put the pen down and turn the computer off.

If you're looking for a beautiful blue ink, give it a try. https://www.gouletpens.com/products/diamine-blue-velvet-40ml-bottled-ink?variant=11884619366443

Screenshot from 2019-03-18 20-16-19.png
 

Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
49,012
32,612
The Far Horizon
Yesterday, I collected my second Meisterstuck Mont Blanc (144 size) pen from the authorised dealer; it had been sent to Switzerland, serviced and repaired.

We carried out some experiments in writing, and agreed that the standard blue ink was too "watery" and lacked precision.

The chap behind the counter informed me that he only uses Mont Blanc black ink these days,(rather than the blue) as it seems to hold its shape and line better.

They also managed to find my sterling silver Mont Blanc 144, which I had left in ages ago to be serviced.

So, my Mont Blancs have been restored to me.

However, I am debating the purchase of a fine nib, but we realised that even when writing with a fine nib (we had some fun experimenting), the blue ink did not hold its shape and form to anything like the extent that the black ink did.

I also purchased a few Leuchtturm 1917 lined notebooks; the quality of the paper they use is excellent, far superior to Rhodia or Moleskine.
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
25,799
8,777
Detroit
We carried out some experiments in writing, and agreed that the standard blue ink was too "watery" and lacked precision.
I wonder if that is subject to the nib and ink combination. I could be way off of course being new to fountain pens, so if what I have to say is off base, do forgive me.

I have that Diamine Blue Velvet ink, posted up above in this thread, and I quite love it. It writes very nicely, smooth and precise in the few pens I've used it in. However, I purchased a pen a few weeks ago and used this same ink and the first letter I wrote to test the pen showed that I didn't like the pen at all. It nearly bled out like a stuck pig. The ink came out so watery and liberally that it was awful. I blame the nib on that pen for the experience and I sent it back for a credit. But the ink in other pens is quite wonderful for me.

I do like the Montblanc ink as well and have the permanent black and royal blue colors and those are quite lovely too.
 

Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
49,012
32,612
The Far Horizon
I wonder if that is subject to the nib and ink combination. I could be way off of course being new to fountain pens, so if what I have to say is off base, do forgive me.

I have that Diamine Blue Velvet ink, posted up above in this thread, and I quite love it. It writes very nicely, smooth and precise in the few pens I've used it in. However, I purchased a pen a few weeks ago and used this same ink and the first letter I wrote to test the pen showed that I didn't like the pen at all. It nearly bled out like a stuck pig. The ink came out so watery and liberally that it was awful. I blame the nib on that pen for the experience and I sent it back for a credit. But the ink in other pens is quite wonderful for me.

I do like the Montblanc ink as well and have the permanent black and royal blue colors and those are quite lovely too.
Yes, I suspect that it could very well be some mix of ink and nib and how they interact with one another.
 

willentrekin

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2013
235
167
US
I'm excited; this week I purchased my first Montblanc intended for general use. I think I've mentioned, my first was a medium nib, which is generally too broad for me in practice, both in taking notes and actual longhand writing.

I ended up with a fine-nabbed 146 with platinum trim I found a great deal on on eBay. Since cleaning my pens at the start of the year, I've been methodically inking them and then selling off the ones I find I'm not loving enough to write with often. This has included a TWSBI (a bit scratchy), a Platinum (lots of feedback, if smooth), and recently, a Pelikan that was a great pen but was used to write thank you cards after a particularly difficult loss. So I used some of those to trade up.

And it's a hell of a trade up. The size is wonderful, and the weight is great whether posted or unposted. I've got it inked with a Sailor Jentle and love it. It's a smooth writer, and I don't get a ton of line variation but it does have a way with ink. It's not exactly "wet," just very smooth. Makes me want to write that next word.

Next up is a teal Pilot Custom 74, which should come out this week. My Custom 823 is probably the pen I'd keep if you told me I could have only one, and the 74 has about the same nib (just a slightly smaller version).

The ink conversation: I've loved the Sailor Jentle I've been using. I think it's Yama-Dori; it's a gorgeous deep blue that reveals its color only occasionally and is otherwise nearly black.

I've always thought of fountain pens as a tripartite experience of nib, ink, and paper. It's worth experimenting with all three, and I'm glad to hear good things about Leuchtterm confirmed here. I have one of their notebooks but have been favoring Nanami Tomoe journals. I like the paper, but it's ridiculously thin. Like writing on an onion peel or something. And for a writer who likes to use both sides of the sheet, that's a problem.

I've had a pretty good experience with Baron Fig.
 

michael180

macrumors newbie
Nov 6, 2007
20
1
Santa Cruz, CA
So it seems there are a few fountain pen users here. Post your pics of what you have and what you dream of.

Here's a few of mine:












[doublepost=1453333520][/doublepost]Here's two pens that I really want. The red one is a completely hand made and tooled Nakaya cigar model. It's probably around $600. The silver one is a Conid Kingsize for probably a few hundred more.

View attachment 611664 View attachment 611665
[doublepost=1553466439][/doublepost]
5B120C85-C15B-4180-A78E-DE6AEDD8BB75.jpeg
Here’s mine.
 
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Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
49,012
32,612
The Far Horizon
I'm excited; this week I purchased my first Montblanc intended for general use. I think I've mentioned, my first was a medium nib, which is generally too broad for me in practice, both in taking notes and actual longhand writing.

I ended up with a fine-nabbed 146 with platinum trim I found a great deal on on eBay. Since cleaning my pens at the start of the year, I've been methodically inking them and then selling off the ones I find I'm not loving enough to write with often. This has included a TWSBI (a bit scratchy), a Platinum (lots of feedback, if smooth), and recently, a Pelikan that was a great pen but was used to write thank you cards after a particularly difficult loss. So I used some of those to trade up.

And it's a hell of a trade up. The size is wonderful, and the weight is great whether posted or unposted. I've got it inked with a Sailor Jentle and love it. It's a smooth writer, and I don't get a ton of line variation but it does have a way with ink. It's not exactly "wet," just very smooth. Makes me want to write that next word.

Next up is a teal Pilot Custom 74, which should come out this week. My Custom 823 is probably the pen I'd keep if you told me I could have only one, and the 74 has about the same nib (just a slightly smaller version).

The ink conversation: I've loved the Sailor Jentle I've been using. I think it's Yama-Dori; it's a gorgeous deep blue that reveals its color only occasionally and is otherwise nearly black.

I've always thought of fountain pens as a tripartite experience of nib, ink, and paper. It's worth experimenting with all three, and I'm glad to hear good things about Leuchtterm confirmed here. I have one of their notebooks but have been favoring Nanami Tomoe journals. I like the paper, but it's ridiculously thin. Like writing on an onion peel or something. And for a writer who likes to use both sides of the sheet, that's a problem.

I've had a pretty good experience with Baron Fig.
Agree about the trinity of ink, nib, and, of course, paper.

I have mentioned already that I am an enthusiastic fan of Leuchtturm1917 - and yes, you can write on both sides of the paper. The other thing I like about the Leuctturm1917 is the size; it is an A5 size, and easily rests on a knee (in the absence of a table or desk) if one is required to take notes; for me, A4 size is too large to be used anywhere but on a table or desk.

Fascinating what you have written about the Tomoe journal paper that you have been using; while I have contemplated buying some, I hadn't realised that it was so thin, (or fine), and yes, I also like to write on both sides of the paper.
 

cambookpro

macrumors 603
Feb 3, 2010
6,468
1,926
United Kingdom
Yes, I suspect that it could very well be some mix of ink and nib and how they interact with one another.
I find inks can vary a lot, some are very wet and gush out, some are dry and take a little work to get started. It tends to be the highly saturated ones which are drier. It does take a little experimentation to work out what nib to pair with what ink. I have a wonderful Visconti, but it writes like a firehose - a drier ink is often wise in that. However, my Parker Sonnet (of comparable nib thickness) much prefers wetter inks.

I have just cleaned and re-inked all my pens in preparation for exam season at university. I'm especially enjoying my TWSBI Diamond 580 with Diamine Robert - the ink is exclusive to Cult Pens, and it's a really interesting dark purple which dries with a yellow-green sheen. Makes my notes on econometrics a lot more palatable to write!



I do have a problem forgetting when to clean/rotate my pens. Thinking of writing an iOS app for myself to let you track what pen is filled with what ink, with suggestions to rotate inks between pens/clean periodically. Not sure if I'll have the time though. Would also be a nice way to track my pen/ink collection.
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
25,799
8,777
Detroit
I received this pen today from Goulet Pens, the Monteverde Invincia Fountain Pen - Nebula.
Screen Shot 2019-03-25 at 8.05.51 PM.png

I liked this pen from the moment I put it in my hand. The cap is postable, the nib I ordered in medium and the look is just beautiful to me. The section is very comfortable to hold and the slight upward taper toward the finial is very nice and makes for a nice holding experience as I write. The cap even has a sort of 'pop' when you unscrew it and it gets to the end of the threads so it comes off easily. Likewise when screwing back on it kind is 'snaps' in place securely which is nice.

It's a joy to write with too with a nice flow of ink, sharp lines and, a good smooth feel. It does have an ever so slight squeak at times when it writes, but it seems to be diminishing as the day wears on and I've written several pages in my journal. It's not a big deal, and it's pretty quiet when it does happen.

I also received another Diamine ink called Wild Strawberry. This is my second ink from Diamine and I quite love it too. The Wild Strawberry is a vibrant and bright red and very pleasing to the eye. The first page I wrote in tonight was an opposing page to Diamine's Blue Velvet ink which is equally as beautiful. The contrast between the two pages and against the smooth white of the paper was very cool to see.

For a Monday, today wasn't half bad for me. Work went well and I got a new pen and ink to play with.

Screen Shot 2019-03-25 at 8.15.30 PM.png
 

Ollé

macrumors regular
Jan 24, 2007
157
171
Australia
Yesterday, I collected my second Meisterstuck Mont Blanc (144 size) pen from the authorised dealer; it had been sent to Switzerland, serviced and repaired.

We carried out some experiments in writing, and agreed that the standard blue ink was too "watery" and lacked precision.

The chap behind the counter informed me that he only uses Mont Blanc black ink these days,(rather than the blue) as it seems to hold its shape and line better.

They also managed to find my sterling silver Mont Blanc 144, which I had left in ages ago to be serviced.

So, my Mont Blancs have been restored to me.

However, I am debating the purchase of a fine nib, but we realised that even when writing with a fine nib (we had some fun experimenting), the blue ink did not hold its shape and form to anything like the extent that the black ink did.

I also purchased a few Leuchtturm 1917 lined notebooks; the quality of the paper they use is excellent, far superior to Rhodia or Moleskine.
That wouldn’t happen to be Mont Blanc’s Permanent Blue Ink would it? I’ve noticed with my latest bottle that it seems to bleed and feather a lot more than it used to. So much so it has me wondering if there is a feed issue with my pen.
[doublepost=1554186121][/doublepost]
I received this pen today from Goulet Pens, the Monteverde Invincia Fountain Pen - Nebula.
View attachment 828400

I liked this pen from the moment I put it in my hand. The cap is postable, the nib I ordered in medium and the look is just beautiful to me. The section is very comfortable to hold and the slight upward taper toward the finial is very nice and makes for a nice holding experience as I write. The cap even has a sort of 'pop' when you unscrew it and it gets to the end of the threads so it comes off easily. Likewise when screwing back on it kind is 'snaps' in place securely which is nice.

It's a joy to write with too with a nice flow of ink, sharp lines and, a good smooth feel. It does have an ever so slight squeak at times when it writes, but it seems to be diminishing as the day wears on and I've written several pages in my journal. It's not a big deal, and it's pretty quiet when it does happen.

I also received another Diamine ink called Wild Strawberry. This is my second ink from Diamine and I quite love it too. The Wild Strawberry is a vibrant and bright red and very pleasing to the eye. The first page I wrote in tonight was an opposing page to Diamine's Blue Velvet ink which is equally as beautiful. The contrast between the two pages and against the smooth white of the paper was very cool to see.

For a Monday, today wasn't half bad for me. Work went well and I got a new pen and ink to play with.

View attachment 828404

Any chance we could get a written sample of the ink? I’m in need of a nice deep, rich red to go with my blue and black.
 
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SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
25,799
8,777
Detroit
That wouldn’t happen to be Mont Blanc’s Permanent Blue Ink would it? I’ve noticed with my latest bottle that it seems to bleed and feather a lot more than it used to. So much so it has me wondering if there is a feed issue with my pen.
[doublepost=1554186121][/doublepost]


Any chance we could get a written sample of the ink? I’m in need of a nice deep, rich red to go with my blue and black.
Certainly. I don't have the best lighting but tried to get a photo with the best representation of the colors as I could.

The paper is 90g Clairefontaine French-ruled (Séyès) paper.
IMG_8742.jpg
 
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AVBeatMan

macrumors 68040
Nov 10, 2010
3,526
1,637
@Scepticalscribe. May I ask where you buy your Montblanc Mystery Black inc cartridges from? I buy mine off Amazon but find they are a bit hit and miss? Sometimes the ink doesn’t flow to the end of the cartridge and sometimes they’re a bit messy.
 

willentrekin

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2013
235
167
US
Any chance we could get a written sample of the ink? I’m in need of a nice deep, rich red to go with my blue and black.
I'd throw in a suggestion of Montblanc's William Shakespeare from the year before last, or Sailor's Jentle shade. The Shakespeare was limited but you can still get them on eBay. The Jentles are usually fairly accessible.

Monteverde also produced a "noir" set full of deep variations on vibrant colors. Off the top of my head I remember only Copper Noir, but it's a lovely and reasonably priced set (for 10 bottles of good ink).
 

D3ggy

macrumors regular
Mar 26, 2019
166
60
I have a couple of Mont Blanc M fountain pens, very cool and Apple esque

I love my 1950’s Parker Duofold Maxima though
 

Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
49,012
32,612
The Far Horizon
@Scepticalscribe. May I ask where you buy your Montblanc Mystery Black inc cartridges from? I buy mine off Amazon but find they are a bit hit and miss? Sometimes the ink doesn’t flow to the end of the cartridge and sometimes they’re a bit messy.
Actually, I buy them in the shop where I buy my Mont Blanc pens; it is also the place where I have them serviced, or sent to Switzerland for repair or servicing.

In fact, it is an accredited and "recognised" (by Mont Blanc) seller of the pens. Thus, the cartridges are guaranteed authentic Mont Blanc cartridges. So, no, I don't use Amazon to purchase fountain pen ink.
 
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AVBeatMan

macrumors 68040
Nov 10, 2010
3,526
1,637
Today I listened to a fascinating Podcast. The Tim Ferris Show with an interview with the author Neil Gaiman. In it he talks about how he writes and with what, which, to begin with is a fountain pen. Turns out that he is a big fountain pen fan. He talks about some of the ones he uses including a Lamy Safari, a Namiki Pilot Falcon, a Pilot 823 (this one he describes as a “workhorse”, and a Visconti Fountain Pen. He goes on to discuss paper and notebooks he uses. He used to love Moleskine notebooks but since they have reduced the quality (the ink “bleeds” through the page) he now uses Leuchtturm Notebooks.



He also talks about using different inks and “The Fountain Pen Hospital” in New York which sounds like a wonderful place. And how he writes. He has one rule for himself and that is when he goes to his “Writing Shed” he can either do nothing, or write. Nothing else is allowed. And since doing nothing soon becomes boring he has to choose writing.



I’m still only half way though the conversation but find it fascinating and well worth a listen.



I’ve just found the interview on YouTube. If you forward to around 28 minutes you’ll find the fountain pen discussion;



 
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willentrekin

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2013
235
167
US
Neil's great. I disagree with him about Lamys, but he's spot on about the 823.

Fountain Pen Hospital is a terrific shop in downtown Manhattan, just a few blocks from the WTC. It's not huge, but it's well stocked and the staff is awesome. I bought my Pilot 912 and first Visconti Rembrandt from them.
 
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Ollé

macrumors regular
Jan 24, 2007
157
171
Australia
@willentrekin Thanks for the tip, I’d forgotten all about MB’s Shakespeare ink, I’ll definitely have to have a look at it.

@SandboxGeneral Both those ink look devine. Although the red is a bit browner than I’d thought.

And dammit, I just found out about my local pen shop’s lay-by policy too. Now, I’m off to juggle my finances and prepare some cost-benefit reports for my wife so I may purchase my next pen(s)
 

D3ggy

macrumors regular
Mar 26, 2019
166
60
Actually, I buy them in the shop where I buy my Mont Blanc pens; it is also the place where I have them serviced, or sent to Switzerland for repair or servicing.

In fact, it is an accredited and "recognised" (by Mont Blanc) seller of the pens. Thus, the cartridges are guaranteed authentic Mont Blanc cartridges. So, no, I don't use Amazon to purchase fountain pen ink.
I find Waterman ink better than Mont Blanc. It doesn’t clog the pen when not used for a while.