New Pen

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Kopio
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New Pen

Post by Kopio » Sat Dec 01, 2007 7:08 am

Well...like the subject says...I just got a new pen. My wife bought me a nice Waterman Fountain Pen. She knows my geeky nature, as well as my like for things old and unconventional (although I own 4 computers a last count), so she got it for me as a pre-Christmas gift. I have been taking it to school, and I must admit....I love how it writes. It is a Phileas Waterman...a good beginner pen.

What I am wondering is....do any of you enjoy using fountain pens? Do you have any favorite ones? Do you have favorite sites or places you like to get them?

This pen comes with cartridges, as well as a refillable piston/bladder so you can actually use it with an inkwell...what a delightful though...although I could imagine it could be quite messy.

Anyhow....I just wanted to see if there were any other odd, quirky, textkittens like myself that enjoy these sorts of things.

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Post by vir litterarum » Sat Dec 01, 2007 8:29 am

I am a pen collector myself, and use a Lamy fountain pen when I can afford to buy refills for it. The best place to purchase pen products online is at paradisepen.com or directly from the pen company itself. It is sad just how infrequently fountain pens and stationery are utilized these days. My aunt went to buy me some stationery at Hallmark, and the one at which she looked did not even stock it anymore, stating that people only e-mail nowadays. For me, though, there is nothing like the feel of a good pen on pure cotton stationery.

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Post by Misopogon » Sat Dec 01, 2007 12:02 pm

I love fountain pens, but I am not a collector. I've got a couple of inexpensive Pelikans (refillable, no cartridges) and some others received as a gift (one is an Aurora).
I love also old nibs and I have a small collection of them: when I was younger I went to any countryside shop here - especially if the keepers were old - to get some nibs. Usually I didn't pay anything or the price marked 30 years earlier.
I love also calligraphy but I am not good at this :(
. I had somewhere some web addresses of calligraphy stuf dealers: if I find them I will send a message, I'm not sure they sell fountain pens .
Matt, it seems we share some interests, besides Greek and Latin: you smoke cigars and I the pipe (well, I've quit now); fishing and nature. Something else? I like also woodworking (just a beginner).

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Post by edonnelly » Sat Dec 01, 2007 12:41 pm

I was given a Pelikan almost 10 years ago. It is the only fountain pen I have ever owned, but it is almost the only pen I ever write with (except for in my check book, where it bleeds through too much and makes the numbers hard to read). It is the kind you have to refill (no cartridge) but that hasn't been a problem, though I have on occasion been out of town and run out of ink. When that happens I can only use a pilot Precise pen, I just cannot stand regular ball-points.
The lists:
G'Oogle and the Internet Pharrchive - 1100 or so free Latin and Greek books.
DownLOEBables - Free books from the Loeb Classical Library

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Re: New Pen

Post by Adelheid » Sat Dec 01, 2007 12:50 pm

Kopio wrote:do any of you enjoy using fountain pens?
I always write with a fountain pen, mine is a Waterman, don't know the exact type. It writes a rather thick line, which is what I prefer.

Because of that I will always buy a fountain pen in a regular shop, not online: I have to be able to try it out and see that it doesn't write too 'thin'.
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Adelheid
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Post by lozzic » Sat Dec 01, 2007 3:02 pm

How odd I was going to open a topic like this about a week ago inquiring about people who may have interests in pens lol! I love anything to do with pens though I much confess I don't own any 'great' fountain pens I am more in to the artistic side of writing that being Calligraphy (though I haven't had much time to do this very recently). I am considering buying a 'proper' fountain pen at Christmas, something along the lines of a Parker Sonnet or a Schaeffer Prelude. I currently own a Parker jotter fountain pen which I use for all everyday writing and I did own a Parker Vector but I lost this about two months ago :(. Both of them write (or wrote in the case of the Vector) very nicely even though they are fairly low down the Parker range. I also own two not very expensive fountain pens designed for Calligraphy made by a company called Manuscript. These write very nicely for their price but certainly are not for everyday handwriting since they are broad and do not have a reinforced iridium tip (so they would wear out with careless everyday use) and they are not a luxury item. I would recommend these to anyone starting Calligraphy.

I also have a modest collection of dip pens (which are specifically for calligraphy) and various sizes and types of nibs for broad lettering like the Uncial scripts and pointed flexible tips for styles such as Copperplate. Then of course there is all the paraphernalia including different inks, paper et cetera. I have been contemplating aiding my Latin learning by using Calligraphy.

I am considering buying a Waterman pen but I am not overly enthusiastic about the styling of them (that may sound a little stupid but fountain pens are for looks not just writing especially with the higher prices). Waterman has a lot of heritage and I hear they write well so I am considering them. I am considering Schaeffer but have heard mixed reviews some people loving them and others hating them though their styling is in my opinion the best. as for Parker I like the styling of some of them and they seem a fairly 'safe' choice. :D
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Post by annis » Sat Dec 01, 2007 5:50 pm

It's interesting how often calligraphy comes up in this discussion. My introduction to fountain pens was a result of my interest in languages. That led naturally to an interest in writing systems, and then it was all over. I wandered around the landscape collecting hollow reed-like weeds and goose feathers (*lots* of geese in Rochester, MN) to make pens. I misused my birthday chemistry set to concoct not explosives but inks — iron salts for blues and blacks, strontium for a nice orange-red. Do kids even get chemistry sets any more?

Anyway, I finally graduated to proper calligraphy pens and inks, which prepared my mind for the first fountain pens I saw. For years I used the cheapo Schaeffer pens with ink cartridges. Most of these write way too thick for my tiny handwriting — my preferences are opposite Adelheid's here. In college a friend brought back from India a bunch of "china pens" made by the Hero company which use ink bladders and have much finer nibs. I used that for years, but eventually lost it.

A few years ago it finally occurred to me to see if teh interweb could find me these Hero pens. Of course it did. So these days I use very inexpensive Hero 329s almost to the exclusion of everything else. If I need an even finer nib I use the ill-named Uranus LE-401. I keep several pens around loaded with different inks. I've never really gone in for the expensive pens — they're mostly for show and are frequently massive. I still write a lot, and prefer something sturdier and of more sensible size.

Beginners interested in trying their hands a fussier writing instruments should consider the Hero 329s. They have hooded nibs which among other things protect the nib somewhat from the damage inflicted by people used to pressing down a lot harder with their pens.

For years I used Waterman inks (Blue-Black and my very favorite shade, Havana), but last year switched over to scary inks from Noodler's Ink. He makes these great "eternal" inks which are water soluble, so they don't gum up your pen, but when allowed to dry on plant cellulose (paper) are permanent. This protects my writing from my natural clumsiness as well as smudging which is a real nuisance when you write as small as I do. The problem with these inks is that not only does paper contain a lot of cellulose fiber, but so does any clothing made of cotton. I've never had a disaster, but given time I'm sure I'll manage something. The pen in my bookbag is always in a baggy, and I never fly with fountain pens unless they're well wrapped in tissue and plastic.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
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Post by Kopio » Sat Dec 01, 2007 6:40 pm

Well I have to admit that this is a little more response that I thought I'd get. I knew William would reply, especially with his interest in Asian languages, but I'm a bit surprised that as many of you replied as did. seems like birds of a feather...
Misopogon wrote: Matt, it seems we share some interests, besides Greek and Latin: you smoke cigars and I the pipe (well, I've quit now); fishing and nature. Something else? I like also woodworking (just a beginner).
That is funny, I have been looking into getting a lathe for a little while. My Patristics Prof at school is really into word-turning...you should see his pens! They are beautiful. All made from exotic hardwoods that he hand selected, turned, and then lacquered nicely. That got me thinking about getting a lathe after seeing his work. I think I am going to get him to make me a pen...but it would be far more fun to do it myself. FWIW, I keep saying I'm going to quit cigars, but I just haven't yet! I really do enjoy a strong espresso and a really full flavored Honduran cigar....matter of fact, I just had one!

I didn't realize you were a fisherman. I rarely go during the school year, I am simply too busy, but in the summer I go quite often. Do you flyfish? That has been a hobby of mine for about 15 years now. I also tie all of my own flies, which is a very satisfying endeavor. Catching a fish on a fly you have tied is as good as it gets.

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Post by ingrid70 » Sat Dec 01, 2007 6:56 pm

I got my first fountain pen when I was at primary school - we had to write with them; I got a Parker set with pen, ballpoint and pencil. I used that until I went to secondary school, when I received a new set, again a Parker. That set went with me through university, until a couple of years ago, when I bought myself a Rotring.

I mix blue ink with black until I've got a mixture that is almost black, but not quite. Obviously, I use refill, cartridges don't mix that well ;-).

My son is in primary school now, he has to write with a fountain pen too. Fortunately, he likes them; he also likes to write with my caligraphy set and dip pens with many coloured inks. He's tried his hand at gothic blackletter.

Ingrid

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Post by klewlis » Sun Dec 02, 2007 3:42 pm

I haven't ever used a *good* fountain pen... just the cheap ones that came with my calligraphy kit when I was a kid. But my brother likes to use them sometimes... so when I was in Italy last year I bought him a *gorgeous* Murano glass fountain pen... it was beautiful and delicate. No idea how well it writes! lol

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Post by Socrates the Cyborg » Sun Dec 02, 2007 8:35 pm

I had some fountain pens when I was in high school that I inherited when my grandfather passed away. I had fun with them and liked using them. I filled them from a bottle of ink. I'm not sure about the internal mechanics. On the other hand, I was in debate in high school, which means I had picked up the pernicious habit of flipping my pen. I still do that. You can imagine the consequences. I started having spray patterns across my shirts and had to give up the fountain pen. Maybe someday I can learn to hold a fountain pen without the impulse to flip it, but it is pretty ingrained in me now.

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Post by retypepassword » Sun Dec 02, 2007 9:55 pm

Ah... after reading this thread, I was inspired to take out my fountain pen and try to revive it. I tried to prime it by flicking, but the pen fell out of my grip, and the nib broke.

Anyhow, if I get a new one, I'll probably use it daily. Now that I about think it, it'd be fun to use fountain pens in this age of high tech. I like the scratching sound the pen makes on the desk when I write, too.
Last edited by retypepassword on Sun Dec 02, 2007 11:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Arvid » Sun Dec 02, 2007 11:03 pm

This discussion has energized me, too. I've tried fountain pens on and off (mostly off) since 5th grade, but I guess like Klewlis said, I never owned a good one. Now I'm motivated to try it again. The main problem is that water-soluble ink requires high-quality paper, which is even less common now than it was 45 years ago! But the UniBall has the same problem, and I use them all the time. I just can't stand regular ballpoints with their incredibly viscous ink. And I really don't like the wimpy blue color that's standard nowadays. Is it just me, or shouldn't writing be black? Did you ever hear someone say they "wanted to see something written down in blue and white?" Sorry for the digression. Now I've got to go out and get a good fountain pen. Thanks for the boost!
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Post by mingshey » Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:20 am

I had developed a liking to dip pens since my school days but did not invest much money on them. Fountain pens looked like a luxury to me. I have a couple of metal nibs and a couple of cheap nib holders. And a few years ago I had purchased an ArtPen, Rotring made, for practicing calligraphy. It is the most expensive kind of pen I own.

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Post by Kopio » Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:42 am

Arvid wrote:And I really don't like the wimpy blue color that's standard nowadays. Is it just me, or shouldn't writing be black? Did you ever hear someone say they "wanted to see something written down in blue and white?" Sorry for the digression. Now I've got to go out and get a good fountain pen. Thanks for the boost!
I HATE blue ink! The only time I use it is when I am using my Bic 4-color-pen. I use it a lot when I am taking notes in my bible. The different colors come in handy. I really started using a 4 color pen when I was in Greek Syntax. I'd use black as my main color, blue for glosses from BDAG, green for syntactical notes (like partitive genitive) and red for mistakes as I was correcting. Since then I use it a lot for outlining my english bible, which is what I primarily teach out of at church (although I try and do my homework out of the NA27).

I just got back from shopping with Marj, we went to a craft store for yarn (she's going to crochet a blanket for our granddaughter)...I ran off and looked at all of the calligraphy and fountain pens. I think I could get into this pens stuff! The dip pens look particularly fun. Does anyone know any good websites for calligraphy info? I think I am going to maybe try my hand at it.

Now it's time for my digression.....is calligraphy a Greek word? Good (or beautiful) writing? That would be my guess....

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Post by Chris Weimer » Mon Dec 03, 2007 6:47 am

You are correct on your etymology: beautiful writing.

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Post by annis » Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:54 pm

I usually recommend people interested in calligraphy start with cheapo sets from their local bookstore to practice the alphabets. Writing with a dip pen requires a different set of skills to control the ink, a nuisance to someone just trying to get a chancery italic right.

The ultimate resource for pen and calligraphy fans is the The Fountain Pen Network. Professional calligraphers are members, and there are tutorials of various sorts. The "Creative Expressions" subforum has rooms for both pen turning and penmanship, where the calligraphy usually hangs out. My current favorite ink, another Noodler's, was commissioned by the FPN.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
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Post by lozzic » Mon Dec 03, 2007 9:22 pm

Kopio if you want to start calligraphy it would be worth investing in a fountain pen Calligraphy set. I myself have only ever used one manufacturer and that is 'Manuscript' though I know 'Schaeffer', 'Parker' and many other notable companies do sets too. As for dip pens they are fun (I much prefer dip pens to fountain pens) though for a beginner they can be frustrating and even inhibit progress if not used properly. I was introduced with a fountain pen but quickly switched over to dip pen. I am not brilliant at calligraphy and have only started up writing again recently though I have read round the subject a little. I will give the advantages and disadvantages of each + being an advantage and - disadvantage:

Fountain pens
+ basically they are plug and play :)
+ are compatible with most qualities and grades of paper (can save money on paper)
+ can be set up and used almost anywhere unlike a dip pen, you also don't require as much space.
+ you don't have to dip so ink spillage is less likely.

- Ink flow in fountain pens especially Calligraphy ones can be very annoying.
- there is a narrow selection of nib types e.g. flexible copperplate nibs are not available (except on vintage fountain pens)
- replacing nibs can be awkward or even require professional attention (not that a cheap fountain pen is really worth that much attention). since nibs can be hard to replace when a nib wears out you may have trouble.
- it is difficult to draw fine hairlines with the edge of a fountain pen nib unlike a dip pen where ink flow is better.
- fountain pens do need cleaning out regularly. This can also be time consuming and messy and does require you actively pumping water through it. This is especially necessary if changing ink colour.
- there is a very narrow choice of rather watery inks that can be used with fountain pens (non-fountain pen inks can block them up or corrode them badly).

Dip pens
+ a very large selection of relatively inexpensive nibs e.g. round hand, copperplate, poster, scroll etc are available. They are usually of a high quality too.
+ Fun :) lol
+ Can use a very large selection of inks.
+ they force you to take your time which results in you taking more care and potentially getting better results.
+ ink flow is very good (providing ink consistency is good).
+ nibs are easy to replace.
+ writing can be of a much higher standard when a dip pen is used properly.
+ the initial cost of the pen itself with an adequate number of nibs is cheaper than a fountain pen.
+ there is a nice selection of dip pen handles to buy from of varying sizes, shapes and colour so you can find whatever suits you or takes your fancy.

- they require better quality paper of finer grades.
- you need to maintain ink consistency. Too dilute and you get ink blots, too thick and the ink wont flow properly on the page. Also be aware if your ink is water based only add distilled water not tap water or anything else; you can get distilled water by holding a heat proof glass or whatever over the steam of a kettle and collecting the condensation (being careful of the heat) you don't need much. If your ink is not water based you use Gum Arabic which you can buy from any good art or craft store. Generally just follow the instruction you get with ink.
- nibs must be regularly washed especially since you get finger grease on them when replacing them etc.
- ink can be very messy.
- they require patience.
- ink does not last a great deal of time between dips, you can put a reservoir on a nib to hold more ink but these can cause ink blots.
- blotting paper may be necessary.
- some sorts of ink are annoying to clean off the nib so diluted ammonia may be necessary to wash them adequately and if you know anything about ammonia it is not pleasant stuff lol.
-some nibs are delicate but this isn't usually a problem if you are sensible.
- some dip pen inks can be corrosive to nibs e.g. iron gall.

don't let the disadvantages put you off, I love dip pens and I rarely have problems, these are just potential problems. The most annoying things about fountain pens for me are ink flow, watery ink and the very narrow selections. the most annoying thing about dip pens is maintaining ink consistency. It may be worth investing in a book to teach you if you are considering taking it up properly.

as for websites etc I buy my stuff from;

http://www.scribblers.co.uk/ (some books and a good selection of equipment)
http://www.johnnealbooks.com/ (lots of books and equipment)

good information on various stuff can be obtained from:

http://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/ (good fountain pen reviews etc)
http://www.zanerian.com/ ( for copperplate Spencerian styles)
http://www.iampeth.com/ ( for copperplate Spencerian styles)

http://youtube.com/ (there are a few nice videos on the subject)
http://en.wikipedia.org/ (nice historical info on the subject)

there are yahoo groups on the subject and various tutorials online but you shall have to search to see what you like, I am not up to date on broad nib styles. It is best to start with a broad nibbed pen on scripts such as Uncial.

Any questions you have just ask.


retypepassword wrote:Ah... after reading this thread, I was inspired to take out my fountain pen and try to revive it. I tried to prime it by flicking, but the pen fell out of my grip, and the nib broke.

Anyhow, if I get a new one, I'll probably use it daily. Now that I about think it, it'd be fun to use fountain pens in this age of high tech. I like the scratching sound the pen makes on the desk when I write, too.
What sort of fountain pen? If it's a good quality it would be worth repairing the nib, if not then you may as well stash it somewhere.

Scratching? lol fountain pens shouldn't scratch they should glide, are you sure your not pushing too hard? Pushing too hard is a habit you develop through use of ball point pens but it is not good to do with fountain pens. :D
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Post by jk0592 » Mon Dec 03, 2007 10:24 pm

I use fountain pens to write. According to circumstances, I have one inexpensive, a moderately expensive one , and a very expensive one. They provide pleasure in the act of writing.

And drilling the greek declensions and verb forms provides an untold number of pleasurable hours, multiplied by the use of fine writing instruments.

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Post by retypepassword » Mon Dec 03, 2007 10:47 pm

lozzic wrote: What sort of fountain pen? If it's a good quality it would be worth repairing the nib, if not then you may as well stash it somewhere.

Scratching? lol fountain pens shouldn't scratch they should glide, are you sure your not pushing too hard? Pushing too hard is a habit you develop through use of ball point pens but it is not good to do with fountain pens. :D
I don't know how great a pen it is. It's an old Sheaffer, and the current skrip cartridges don't fit it. It doesn't look too fancy, but the nib's gold colored.

As for the scratching, it could just be that I'm pushing too hard. But, I tried writing on some carbon-copy paper before I broke it (there was ink coming out, but it didn't come out continuously), and the writing didn't show up on the copies.

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Post by edonnelly » Mon Dec 03, 2007 11:16 pm

jk0592 wrote:According to circumstances, I have one inexpensive, a moderately expensive one , and a very expensive one.
Having only used a single fountain pen in my life, I am asking this out of pure curiosity. (1) Can you tell the difference between the inexpensive and the more expensive ones; (2) if so, is the difference more in the "feel" as you write or does the actual writing look better? And (3) does it make a difference if you are writing calligraphy vs. just regular writing (I've never written calligraphy in my life and probably never will)?

Also (4, if you will) with the expense, do you eventually reach a point where (like grandfather clocks) you are mostly paying for the outer "package" (what it looks like) rather than any improvement in the internal mechanism?
The lists:
G'Oogle and the Internet Pharrchive - 1100 or so free Latin and Greek books.
DownLOEBables - Free books from the Loeb Classical Library

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Post by jk0592 » Tue Dec 04, 2007 1:32 am

edonnelly wrote:
Having only used a single fountain pen in my life, I am asking this out of pure curiosity. (1) Can you tell the difference between the inexpensive and the more expensive ones; (2) if so, is the difference more in the "feel" as you write or does the actual writing look better? And (3) does it make a difference if you are writing calligraphy vs. just regular writing (I've never written calligraphy in my life and probably never will)?

Also (4, if you will) with the expense, do you eventually reach a point where (like grandfather clocks) you are mostly paying for the outer "package" (what it looks like) rather than any improvement in the internal mechanism?
I use the inexpensive one to write on "bad" paper, especially to write comments directly on reports or student assignments, etc. The intermediate one is to write on "good" paper, notes at meetings, or any text that i write before committing to paper. These two follow me at work.

At home I use the most expensive one, for my own enjoyment, for anything that is woth writing, short or long. I use good paper for that.

NB: Good paper = Fountain pen friendly paper.

The inexpensive one is a Waterman Phileas, it has a steel nib, and simple materials and shape. The intermediate one has an 18K gold nib, the pen is made of nicer materials, and is nicer looking, and writes giving a beatifully agreeable buttery feeling. The more expensive one is made of fancy materials overall, and has a unique shape reflecting light in a subtle way. It writes also with a buttery feeling.

As for calligraphy, it depends what you mean by calligraphy. If you mean as nice writing improving your penmanship, then OK. But if you are interested in calligraphy as in medieval manuscripts and the like, then you need someting else than a fountain pen.

You do reach a point where very good pens all write extremely well, but you must find the right one for your hand size, and the characteristics of your writing.

You can get, in some cases, the same pen but with precious materials giving the pen the status of jewelry. I do not go that way, though.

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Post by AgoNxRuS » Tue Dec 04, 2007 1:59 am

I started with calligraphy approx. two months ago. I've fallen in love with it since the first time I grabbed that damn quill. The only downside is that I live in a shitty place that offers shitty crap (I rarely blame myself), in other words, I've got the quality, lowest of the lowest. Not only are they diametrically incorrect, but also inaccurate in terms of originality, so~ far from the real thing. And I don't have a credit card so I can't order anything online, more like, I'm scared to do order things from 'Teh Interwebz'.
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Post by Kopio » Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:01 am

AgoNxRuS wrote:shitty place that offers shitty crap
Isn't this statement a bit redundant? Especially the latter part :lol:

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Post by AgoNxRuS » Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:23 am

Kopio wrote:
AgoNxRuS wrote:shitty place that offers shitty crap
Isn't this statement a bit redundant? Especially the latter part :lol:
It's inevitable. It's like you're telling me that god exists. While in fact, he doesn't. A better example for the theophiles out there: It's like you're telling me that the governments aren't corrupted.
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Post by Kopio » Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:25 am

AgoNxRuS wrote:It's inevitable. It's like you're telling me that god exists. While in fact, he doesn't. A better example for the theophiles out there: It's like you're telling me that the governments aren't corrupted.
Where is this horrid place that you live anyhow? I'm wondering if it really is that tough finding good pens.

I must say though, that your "half empty" attitude is rather refreshing after talking with so many positive people :wink:

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Post by AgoNxRuS » Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:32 am

Kopio wrote:
AgoNxRuS wrote:It's inevitable. It's like you're telling me that god exists. While in fact, he doesn't. A better example for the theophiles out there: It's like you're telling me that the governments aren't corrupted.
Where is this horrid place that you live anyhow? I'm wondering if it really is that tough finding good pens.

I must say though, that your "half empty" attitude is rather refreshing after talking with so many positive people :wink:
I'm not an optimist, obviously, though neither am I a pessimist. I'm a realist, unlike some people I face reality as it is.

The horrid place in which I reside is called Israel. A good place to live for those who like equality, and a bad place to live for those like me who want good quality merchandise . . . or anything in general, particularly people, but that's everywhere. What kind of merchandise holds no significance, they all suck.
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Post by Kopio » Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:37 am

AgoNxRuS wrote:The horrid place in which I reside is called Israel. A good place to live for those who like equality, and a bad place to live for those like me who want good quality merchandise . . . or anything in general, particularly people, but that's everywhere. What kind of merchandise holds no significance, they all suck.
Hey...look at the bright side....at least you can buy Cuban cigars! Maybe we could get a Cuban Cigar/Fountain Pen exchange going?? Hmmmmm....that just might be crazy enough to work!

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Post by klewlis » Tue Dec 04, 2007 5:50 am

Kopio wrote:
AgoNxRuS wrote:The horrid place in which I reside is called Israel. A good place to live for those who like equality, and a bad place to live for those like me who want good quality merchandise . . . or anything in general, particularly people, but that's everywhere. What kind of merchandise holds no significance, they all suck.
Hey...look at the bright side....at least you can buy Cuban cigars! Maybe we could get a Cuban Cigar/Fountain Pen exchange going?? Hmmmmm....that just might be crazy enough to work!
It'd probably be easier and cheaper to get them from a Canadian. :P

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Post by Arvid » Wed Dec 05, 2007 9:22 pm

Hi, folks! I'm still shopping for a good fountain pen; problem is, even if I could afford them, I'm really not interested in gold-filled or jewel-encrusted barrels, so I'm on a quest for great-quality works in a cheap body. Probably impossible, but who knows?

In the meantime, I don't want to lower the tone of the discussion, but a lot of you seem to be real aficionados of writing instruments in general, and maybe you could help me. A couple of years ago I had a few...just cheap, drug store pens...that I really liked, and then of course I lost them. Now I can't remember what they were called, and nobody in the stores seem to know what I'm talking about. I suppose you'd have to call them "fiber-tipped," but unlike a Flair, it's a very small tuft of fiber-tip emerging from a metal ferrule. At a glance, you could be forgiven for thinking it was a mechanical pencil, because the tip is the exact size and shape of a mechanical pencil lead sticking out of its holder. It seems to me the name had the word "sharp" in it, but I'm not sure. Any help you can offer would be appreciated: I really liked the line they drew, and the resistance level was just right!
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Post by edonnelly » Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:09 pm

Your description sounds a little like the Sharpie Ultra Fine tip:

http://www.artstuff.net/sharpie_extra_a ... a_fine.htm

but it's a little more like a marker than a regular pen, and so it writes a little too fat for my taste when it comes to paper (but I love using these for writing on CDs).
The lists:
G'Oogle and the Internet Pharrchive - 1100 or so free Latin and Greek books.
DownLOEBables - Free books from the Loeb Classical Library

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Post by Arvid » Thu Dec 06, 2007 12:27 am

edonnelly wrote:Your description sounds a little like the Sharpie Ultra Fine tip:

http://www.artstuff.net/sharpie_extra_a ... a_fine.htm

but it's a little more like a marker than a regular pen, and so it writes a little too fat for my taste when it comes to paper (but I love using these for writing on CDs).
Thanks for the link--I like Sharpies, too. But like you said, they're best for writing on CDs or DVDs. The ones I'm thinking of had a very small tip, just like a pencil lead, and a rounded end. I'm glad it's not something completely obvious--I'd feel even stupider.
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Post by lozzic » Thu Dec 06, 2007 12:40 am

Arvid wrote:Hi, folks! I'm still shopping for a good fountain pen; problem is, even if I could afford them, I'm really not interested in gold-filled or jewel-encrusted barrels, so I'm on a quest for great-quality works in a cheap body. Probably impossible, but who knows?
You will probably be surprised to hear this as most people are when they are first told it, in fact it surprised me greatly when I found out about it especially considering the prices that fountain pens can go up to. The general consensus is that price makes very little difference in terms of how well the mechanics of a fountain pen work.
If you intend to try any 'old' technology or technology of the connoisseur you will often find that products greatly vary from one another even if they are the same model or produced in a fair quantity. I say 'old' because only old-fashioned technology has that unique almost handmade feel (many fountain pens and nibs are handmade of course but not all though this feeling seems to spread over the board) unlike modern mass produced technologies such as ball points. Different pens of any sort whether it be fountain pens or dip pens do behave differently to one another even if they are the same model from the same factory. Those two fountain pens I mentioned in an earlier post, the Parker Jotter and Vector both have pretty much the same mechanism and the nibs are identical but I could feel a huge difference in the way the nib glided across the surface and deposited ink. As I said the same can be said of dip pens, two nibs of the same type can give different friction of flex differently.
As I have said there is a large amount of difference between individual pens, this difference can be applied across all pens irrespective of price. The general mechanics of a fountain pen stay the same whether it is $15, $50 or way more than that, the main reason price varies is due to the raw materials used in making a pen and the aesthetics. A really cheap basic pen of say $15 may be pretty much the same as a $200 pen apart from the fact that the $200 pen has an iridium reinforced tip, fancy engraved nib, gloss lacquer, solid 18 carat gold trim or 23 carat plated trim, silver and precious stones or whatever. Even the brand name can increase a pens value by a huge amount for example when they associate a pen with a car company.
Basically what I am trying to say is you can get a perfectly good pen, if not the best for writing at the very low price brackets so if your not interested in the aesthetics I am certain you will find what you are looking for in terms of performance but do remember that even individual pens can vary within the same model. This post is not to put anyone off buying a more fancy stylish pen, by all means, I am considering it myself as I mentioned earlier but what I am saying is that price is pretty much not related to mechanics, some very expensive pens have been considered bad or awkward writers.

:)
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Post by annis » Thu Dec 06, 2007 2:17 am

Arvid wrote:A couple of years ago I had a few...just cheap, drug store pens...that I really liked, and then of course I lost them. Now I can't remember what they were called, and nobody in the stores seem to know what I'm talking about. I suppose you'd have to call them "fiber-tipped," but unlike a Flair, it's a very small tuft of fiber-tip emerging from a metal ferrule. At a glance, you could be forgiven for thinking it was a mechanical pencil, because the tip is the exact size and shape of a mechanical pencil lead sticking out of its holder.
Like these? I don't know brand names, but any art or drafting supply store will have pens like these in various tip sizes and colors. I used to use these all the time.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;

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Post by Arvid » Thu Dec 06, 2007 6:54 am

annis wrote:Like these?
Exactly! The one on the left is just like the ones I had. Maybe it was an attempt to introduce this type of pen to the general public that didn't take off, and I just happened to catch it. Now I know where to go, anyway; thanks a lot!
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