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Official Fountain Pen Aficionados Thread

bdavro23

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I know this thread is for fountain pens but is there any love for ball point pens? I’m not into this world so I am wondering, are ball point pens considered boring or unsophisticated?

I am considering getting myself a nice pen that is also practical, which to me means ball point. I’d probably get the one I posted earlier as it comes in both fountain and ball point.
In the before times, when I worked in an office, I carried a Montblanc ballpoint that the team I managed 11 years ago chipped in and bought me for xmas. I like it and enjoy writing with it, along with the sentimental value. At the other end of the spectrum, I really like the Parker Jotters. They write well, look reasonably good and are an all time classic pen.

 

bdavro23

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Help me pick a great fountain pen. I love fountain pens, have used them for years and know a little, but feel lost in picking one. My history is with Watermans (I’ve worn out a few) and have an ok collection of antique FPs. What I want is a daily dress pen. Here are my initial thoughts:
1. Sophisticated styling, elegant, but not soporific.
2. Prefer to stay under $500 but might stretch a bit for something special.
3. 18k nib
4. I like a little more flexible nib although I have no illusions with my ability to capably wield it.

Happy to answer questions if I’ve missed anything.

Go!
I have a Montblanc 149 in my small collection, and its a really nice pen. If I'm honest though, I'd probably rather have a Pelikan M600 or 800, maybe a Sailor, and probably a Montblanc 146 too. The 149 is just big. I would never carry it, so its a desk pen for me.

Come to think of it, the pen I like carrying most of my fountain pens is my stub nib Vanishing Point. I doubt thats really what you're looking for given your requirements, though.
 
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Mark from Plano

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Pelikan M800 or a Visconti Homo Sapiens.
Noted

By dress pen, do you mean something that will feel at home with tailored clothing?

I have a couple of St. Dupont pens (the two top ones here) that I sometimes use when I'm in tailored clothing.

View attachment 1580639


The brown one is kind of heavy; the gold-colored one is a bit lighter. Both have a softer nib than the red Nakaya pen at the bottom, but I wouldn't consider them springy -- certainly not flex. My only complaint is that I've veered away from metal body pens in the last couple of years. Too heavy.

I've thought about getting a Sailor 1911 or Pro Gear to use with tailoring, but don't own one. I like the idea of Sailor pens and Seiko watches worn with tailoring for a kind of 1960s salaryman vibe.

I've been using my Pilot 823 so much (medium nib), I haven't reached for anything else. I wish the body design was better, but the nib is just so enjoyable to use.
Yes. Ideally, I’d find something that I could use on a daily basis but was also suited for sticking in a suit pocket.

Several great suggestions here. The top one looks perfect

Have you already gone down the time sink holes that are FPGeeks and Fountain Pen Network?
Good God, no. 😂

What are these Waterman pens that have worn out? That is not supposed to happen. Are the old pens not dressy, or too fragile for daily use?
Waterman Charleston’s. I’ve owned several over the years. The case either cracks or the hardware comes loose after years of daily use. It’s made me not want to put my vintage pens into daily rotation.

2. Is there a pen show near you coming back later this year or early next year? Depending on whether you count the admission, travel, and lodging against the $500, you might get a lot of pen there. Also depends whether you bring cash and stick to that amount, because there are lots of pens.
There is, but not until September

1. How plain is soporific? Like are Sailor, Platinum, Nakaya, and Pilot pens without trim rings or cap bands, just clips, too little? Nakaya might be over the budget nowawdays. Is sterling silver too much? Is Pelikan boring or dressy?
A black pen with silver hardware is soporific

3 & 4/ Why 18k? 14k is usually considered better for flex. 18k is soft, but 14k is thought to spring back better.
No reason. Convince me I’m wrong

There are only so many new flexible pens, and I can't remember if any aren't cartridge pens, except for hunting down a Pilot Custom 823 with a FA (falcon) nib swap from that one store in Japan or however that was. Or just get Pilot Custom 742 or 743 if you like converters. Pilot and Platinum do soft nibs if you just want cushy and not so much line variation. The Platinum 3776 Century black diamond color is nice, translucent darkest grey with rhodium trim.

I'd say, if you want flex and don't mind or do like self fillers, go with old pens.
I have a ‘40s vintage Waterman with a flexible nib that I love to write with. That’s really my only experience. If I can find something similar, it’s a bonus, but not a requirement

It's all a matter of taste, but IMO vintage pens are much more interesting and are of much higher quality than modern pens. You will not wear out a vintage Sheaffer or Parker pen. I have a couple of oversize Sheaffer's lever fillers, one from the '20s and one from the 30's, which still operate perfectly. The 14KT nibs are about as flexible as a nail, though.
Good ideas

I went through this drill a year ago and ended up with a Pelikan M 600.
-It is one of the top choices of the hard corps aficionados at the Fountain Pen Network as a DCP
-I find the ergonomics good, the aesthetics great, and it is a free flowing, wet, writer
-The brand is, to me, a sort of under the radar alternative to Mount Blanc; quality, but not one that might elicit negative reactions
-A initially liked the M 800, but I prefer a posted pen, and the M 600 was the max size I was comfortable with for longer sessions
-I like the feel of posted writing, but more important, unposted pens always end up rolling off the desk for me. Not something I want with a 14 k nib
This idea is currently the leader in the clubhouse.
 

Mark from Plano

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Thoughts?

C8A7943B-7074-4CEA-BE5F-B26F07654057.png
 

gomestar

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I have, I believe a 205 with a Medium nib. Took a little to get used to, but it writes so smooth and pure.

too smooth and too pure for daily use though.

Same with Visconti, I have 2 Van Goghs. They act like you'd expect an Italian made pen would.
 

gomestar

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i have some $60 Sailor with a steel nib that I got from a Japanese knick knack store locally. It's fantastic, writes very fine if that's what you need. I can only imagine how good the gold nib would be.

some of those pilot lacquer pens too. Total drool.

Goulet had that sweet Sailor with the fancy flexy-but-not-quite nib for like $600. Would be very curious to try.



you can tell already that i'm an expert
 

gomestar

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also, i have been using fountain pens as my daily writers and I do write a lot of notes, about a page per day just for work. My dad got into them so I entertained it for a bit.

for the day to day, i think TWSBI is outstanding. The Eco and I just got one of those clear Vac 700 pens - both are superb. Previously used Lamy Safari and those are also outstanding. TWSBI has a better ink filling system, and whatever previously held assumption i had about clear plastic pens looking cheap was removed by how cool TWSBI's ink vessel is with ink sloshing around.

currently using Herbin Bleu de Pontif in one and Pilot Iro-something Tsuki-yo in the other. Just used up some Diamine Majestic Blue as well, hello saturation.
 

Mark from Plano

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If I ever get back to the office I’ll post a pic of some of my antique/vintage pens.
 

Notch

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I'm a bit of a fountain pen enthusiast, and when it comes to writing (while Montblanc certainly is a very good pen and it was one of the first I bought) I would look into Montegrappa. The Pelikan posted above I have in black/blue but I find it a bit small for everyday use. It was my first pen and was a gift from my father, who's an even larger fountain pen nut (I think he owns over 150 fountain pens). The Omas 360 pen I like because of the styling, and you can usually find a good deal on them.

Either one of these would be my choice:

Montegrappa NeroUno
Omas 360
Dunhil Sidecar (all black or all blue version are the nicest looking)
Montblanc 146

I'll post a picture of these this afternoon.
 

Notch

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Left to right:

Dunhil Sidecar Fountain Pen in blue resin, very sought after now
Dunhil Sidecar Fountain Pen in black resin
Montblanc 164 Platinum Rollerball
Montblanc 146 Fountain Pen
Omas 360 Fountain Pen Black resin
Omas 360 Fountain Pen Grey resin
Omas 360 Snakewood Rollerball
Omas 360 Cocobolo Fountain Pen

Fountain Pens-1.jpg
 
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gomestar

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also, lets not forget the actual fun part of fountain pens ... new inks.


i read this to get an idea of what an ink will look like through certain pens and onto certain papers
 

gomestar

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622B7494-1507-47E2-8178-6F2CE9E3D83A.jpeg
 

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