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3D Megadoodoo
Nov 25, 2010

BENIS


Heath posted:

India ink is shellac based rather than water based and if I'm not mistaken will take basically forever to actually dry out in the bottle with the degree of air exposure it would have with a cork top. How old is it?

It says it's acrylic, not that I know what that means.

How old is what? The ink I just got from Pen Store and it doesn't have a date anywhere. The inkwell I mean to use is from the first half of the 20th century. The cork is at least 30 years old but looks unused

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Heath
Apr 29, 2008



The ink, I meant. I have some ancient Pelikan India ink that still writes like the day it was bottled. It should be fine.

Chip McFuck
Jul 24, 2007

We droppin' like a comet and this Vulcan tried to Spock it/These Martians tried to do it, but knew they couldn't cop it

I've heard the concern with cork is that it can introduce mold into the ink if it hasn't been cleaned in a while. Other than that you should be ok.

Surprise T Rex
Apr 9, 2008



Dinosaur Gum

My Preppy arrived this morning! I can't say much about the standard ink cartridge it came with, but it's fine I guess. Just looks like any black gel ink to me, once it's on the page.

As for the actual writing experience, it's great - I'm not used to barely touching the paper with a pen like this, having pretty much only used ballpoints and the occasional gel ink pen in the past. I got my other easy-writing ball-based pens today too (a Pentel Energel, Zebra Sarasa and Uni Jetstream) and while they're all good, I've just immediately dropped them in favour of the Preppy for note taking. Now I want to write a ton of stuff and have nothing to write.

I guess the next thing is to find a nice ink or two that I like. I looked on CultPens and it looks like they don't really carry samples, but have 30ml bottles of Diamine for £2 each which seems decent. Though, it's still twice the price of samples even if you get a significant amount more ink. The Writing Desk seems to have samples, but they're not selling them during the pandemic, and the only other place I can find is PurePens - have I missed anywhere that sells to the UK?

Also, I guess... any strong ink recommendations? I suppose it's subjective, but can't hurt to ask

e: also, any solid resources for learning to improve handwriting? I don't think mine is bad necessarily but it could do with some improvement for sure, and some of the early posts in this thread (when it devolved into hand-written posting) have such nice writing it hurts.

Surprise T Rex fucked around with this message at 07:49 on May 29, 2020

Heath
Apr 29, 2008



If you want a functional workhorse, Noodler's Heart of Darkness is a reliable black, and his Bad Belted Kingfisher is a good waterproof dark blue. If you want vibrant and pretty, anything Iroshizuku, but they're not waterproof. I've only tried a handful of Diamines but they've all been great. Robert Oster also has a good selection. Those are the brands I stick with. Definitely read reviews thoroughly for any Noodler's.

Edit: sorry, missed that you're in the UK. Pilot inks are generally great. Lamy stuff is kinda boring but it just works.

Heath fucked around with this message at 08:13 on May 29, 2020

DigitalRaven
Oct 9, 2012

When I kill you with a motor-car, you should have the common decency to stay dead, you horrid little object



Grimey Drawer

Iíve loved all the J Herbin inks Iíve used so far (Diablo Menthe, Rose Tendresse, Violette Pensťe, and Emerald of Chivor). And the Iroshizuku Kon-Peki is my favourite blue by far. I have some Diamine inks, but I use them less than the ones mentioned.

That said, the £2 bottles are great starting points. Grab some!

In other news, I got a TWSBI Precision as a birthday present. Iíve not had the typical problems with TWSBI pens that some others have, but this one is all metal, rather than a plastic body, which may help there. Also it feels amazing in-hand. I still love my 1.6 stub 580, but the Precision is right up there for something thatís a bit less extravagant a writer.

Comrade Koba
Jul 2, 2007



Fallen Rib

Surprise T Rex posted:

e: also, any solid resources for learning to improve handwriting? I don't think mine is bad necessarily but it could do with some improvement for sure, and some of the early posts in this thread (when it devolved into hand-written posting) have such nice writing it hurts.

Canít go wrong with the OG stuff:

https://www.iampeth.com/pdf/spencer...ical-penmanship

Sankis
Mar 8, 2004

But I remember the fella who told me. Big lad. Arms as thick as oak trees, a stunning collection of scars, nice eye patch. A REAL therapist he was. Er wait. Maybe it was rapist?



The reddit handwriting sub has some decent links and there's stuff like this https://www.gouletpens.com/products...=14405530812459 that seemed pretty good to me.

However, Penmanship as a hobby seems to have grown over the past decade and there are a ton of free resources online like https://loopsandtails.com/ as well as a ton of youtube/Instagram people offering both free and paid practice sheets and the like.

Good handwriting is like 90% practice and consistency.

gschmidl
Sep 3, 2011

it's the journey
not the destination
as we know



"YOU TRIED" DIVISION


I've now barrelled through this entire thread and... I have one of the LS Capless coming.

But also I'd like a cheap vacuum and a dropper pen for fun - are the Moonman M2 and Wung Sung 699 still the items of choice there? And what ink do I use to show them off properly? I'm in Austria, so Noodler's a no-go for the ink; I'm thinking Oxblood.

And maybe a PenBBS Hawaii...


Oh, and a question: I was told earlier that I shouldn't have unscrewed the front part of the old Pilot I managed to snag - should I apply some silicone to the thread to be 100% sure, or should I just not ever touch it again? It doesn't seem to leak or do anything untoward.

gschmidl fucked around with this message at 15:34 on May 29, 2020

Jiru
Oct 12, 2016

You can't see me!





Dad Hominem posted:

By the way, if you're in Spain and are into vintage pens, have you come across Wiese Montblancs? I had no idea such a thing existed until a friend picked a few up in a flea market. It's a pretty fascinating story!

Months late (sorry!), but hey, now I have! I did not know the story until I started tracking down this odd pen which claimed to be a Montblanc, but bore no resemblance to anything Montblanc ever made. Turns out, there's not a lot of info on those things, and if you search for it in English you find nothing at all.

Below, a Montblanc 630, made in Spain and only in Spain:



It is a pretty flimsy pen: the clip and golden parts are oxidized and the gold is mostly gone. The tiny golden nib discoloured upon washing, revealing a steel base. It's clearly a budget pen, one of the latter products of the Wiese factory. On the upper side, the plastic seems to be sturdy, no cracks, and it polished up rather nicely.



Partially dissassembled for cleaning (it had a ton of dried old ink inside!). Notice the yellow ink window, which, though it shows up a bit under the cap, becomes virtually invisible once it is inked with a dark ink; I thought it looked rather shoddy at first, but it really is a nice design idea. Funny enough, the line below is not perfect, the black plastic has a bit of a bump into the yellow side.



The piston came visibly crooked to one side (upper side in the pic), and at first I thought the pen would be toast, as there seems to be no way of disassembling it. Surprisingly enough, it works perfectly (how it does, I have no idea. The piston should pivot over some threads underneath it, which it can't really do in this position. But somehow it still turns). The threaded part is really short and does give the impression of a stuck piston, but in fact it'll mostly turn into place once it's gotten to the end, and the piston moves all the way; the seal is as good as new. I did lubricate it a bit, because it was hard to move it at first; but other than that, I did nothing.

Those things seem to be a byproduct of an era. In the late 40's, you couldn't really import most things into Spain, as we were full into the autocratic phase of the Franco dictatorship. So Montblanc figured out that the way to go was to open up a local branch in Spain, which operated on the local level and produced pens for the Spanish market. The responsible for this branch was a certain E. Wiese, who initially marked the pens, apart from the Montblanc branding, with his own name: "Produced in Spain by E. Wiese". Later on, this marking disappears; there is speculation that they planned to sell the pens in outer markets, taking advantage of the very cheap Spanish labor to undercut the benefits of the German-European Montblanc branch. That did not sit well with the Germans, of course, and they apparently refused to provide Wiese with the blueprints for the newer pen models. Unabashed by that, the Spanish Montblanc factory came up with some new, 100% in-house models, complete with own numbering (sometimes overlapping that of the European Montblancs) which are 100% Montblanc branded, but only to be found here; this 630 is one of a handful of those. They are not marked as spanish-made, either, which can indicate they tried to go on with their original plan; if so, they failed, because there's virtually no presence of those things outside Spain. With the end of autocracy in the sixties Montblanc put an end to the whole mess, but they apparently never bothered to catalogue whatever models Wiese had made on his own. Due to this, documentation is scarce, though there is a book in Spanish published some years ago that probably has more info on it.

Jiru fucked around with this message at 17:46 on May 29, 2020

Dad Hominem
Dec 4, 2005

Standing room only on the Disco Bus

Fun Shoe


Nice find! A lot of good Montblanc info, German and otherwise, is hidden away in limited edition books. I had a lot of trouble researching mine (a celluloid 342 and a plastic 344) when I got them.

Jiru
Oct 12, 2016

You can't see me!





Dad Hominem posted:

Nice find! A lot of good Montblanc info, German and otherwise, is hidden away in limited edition books. I had a lot of trouble researching mine (a celluloid 342 and a plastic 344) when I got them.

Thanks! Yeah, for such a known brand, Montblanc seems to love oscurantism. I was taken aback by how little info there is on the net about them, compared to, say, Parker pens, which are documented to hell and back. Good thing you can always count on pen nerds

Dad Hominem
Dec 4, 2005

Standing room only on the Disco Bus

Fun Shoe

Jiru posted:

Thanks! Yeah, for such a known brand, Montblanc seems to love oscurantism. I was taken aback by how little info there is on the net about them, compared to, say, Parker pens, which are documented to hell and back. Good thing you can always count on pen nerds

Even with Parker, a lot of the good stuff is hidden away in out-of-print books. Sure, everyone and their mother on FPN has reviewed the Duofold Big Red, but you won't get a systematic explanation of the different imprint variants without the Duofold book. My pen reference library is already way too big but there's still so many more books I want.

Doctor Dogballs
Apr 1, 2007

driving the fuck truck from hand land to pound town without stopping at suction station


Surprise T Rex posted:


Also, I guess... any strong ink recommendations? I suppose it's subjective, but can't hurt to ask


Well my #1 ink recommendation is have fun with it. If you stick with the same black and dark blue stuff you've written with in ballpoints your whole life, you're missing out.

To get more specific,
Any Edelstein or Iroshizuku ink will write very smoothly, clean up easily, have really nice shading qualities, and not smell weird. Both of those are their company's "nicer" line of inks. Montblanc inks are also nice. These 3 aren't the only brands I use but they're the only ones I would universally recommend as having no drawbacks. A lot of people seem to love Diamine. I have no experience with them.

My favorites:
Blue: Edelstein Topaz. An extremely vivid medium-lightish blue. A *tiny* bit darker than Iroshizuku Kon-Peki which is also very popular
Red: Edelstein Star Ruby. Dark but still has a bit of magenta to it. Very beautiful ink, lot of subtlety to it, changes a lot from when you write to when it dries, and looks a lot different coming out of different pens
Magenta/Pink: Iroshizuku Tsutsuji. Extremely vivid, bright, pink magenta. Very fun color, not subtle at all
Purple: Iroshizuku Murasaki. Purple without being magenta-ish and yet not blue-ish. Very few other inks hits just the right purpley purple shade like this
Teal: Iroshizuku Ku-Jaku. A tiny bit more saturated than Edelstein Aquamarine. It is really right in the middle of blue and green. It looks blue next to green, and looks green next to blue

Surprise T Rex
Apr 9, 2008



Dinosaur Gum





These all look great. Not sure that I'd find much of a use for the pinks, but perhaps over time I'll get a little braver. I've stayed away from the Iroshizuku inks for now since they seem to be a 'premium' (read: 'expensive') brand, even though some of their stuff looks incredible. Ordered some Diamine samples for now because that's readily and cheaply available from CultPens - found an eBay seller called stationeryshop-scotland and I'm hoping the £5 worth I ordered turns up at some stage. I branched out a little from the 'formal' ink colours though, and while I picked up some "safe" choices like Diamine Blue-Black and Eclipse, I also grabbed Ancient Copper, Grape, and Sherwood Green (I'm from Nottingham, I had to...).

I'm not sure anyone would care if I broke out a hot pink at work though, honestly, and right now everyone's working from home anyway.

Sankis
Mar 8, 2004

But I remember the fella who told me. Big lad. Arms as thick as oak trees, a stunning collection of scars, nice eye patch. A REAL therapist he was. Er wait. Maybe it was rapist?



I haven't used my Platinum 3776 in months and god drat i forgot what a great pen this is. I wish Platinum had more pens I wanted because I absolutely adore their nibs.

Dad Hominem
Dec 4, 2005

Standing room only on the Disco Bus

Fun Shoe

Sankis posted:

I haven't used my Platinum 3776 in months and god drat i forgot what a great pen this is. I wish Platinum had more pens I wanted because I absolutely adore their nibs.

Nakaya uses 3776 nibs in all their pens!

Sankis
Mar 8, 2004

But I remember the fella who told me. Big lad. Arms as thick as oak trees, a stunning collection of scars, nice eye patch. A REAL therapist he was. Er wait. Maybe it was rapist?



Oh, that's right they do don't they? If i ever hit the lottery I'll be sure to pick one up.

Edit: I guess a Platinum President would be nice though they're kinda boring looking.

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Dad Hominem
Dec 4, 2005

Standing room only on the Disco Bus

Fun Shoe

Sankis posted:

Oh, that's right they do don't they? If i ever hit the lottery I'll be sure to pick one up.

Edit: I guess a Platinum President would be nice though they're kinda boring looking.

The President allegedly writes quite differently from the 3776 - it has an oddball 18K nib which is supposed to be significantly stiffer than the 14K nibs in the 3776 and Nakayas. You'll want to check some reviews. I haven't had much experience with them myself.

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