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Why Do You Use A Fountain Pen?

why? pens poll existential

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345 replies to this topic

Poll: Why Do You Use A Fountain Pen? (614 member(s) have cast votes)

Why do you use a fountain pen?

  1. It makes me look cool/posh/cultured. (114 votes [8.58%])

    Percentage of vote: 8.58%

  2. I have weak writing pressure. (61 votes [4.59%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.59%

  3. To improve penmanship. (251 votes [18.89%])

    Percentage of vote: 18.89%

  4. Upholding tradition. (188 votes [14.15%])

    Percentage of vote: 14.15%

  5. In the loving memory of someone close to me. (29 votes [2.18%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.18%

  6. I'm tired of donating money to Bic/PaperMate. (89 votes [6.70%])

    Percentage of vote: 6.70%

  7. The variety of ink colours. (279 votes [20.99%])

    Percentage of vote: 20.99%

  8. I do calligraphy. (75 votes [5.64%])

    Percentage of vote: 5.64%

  9. Other (list them in the forum posts!). (243 votes [18.28%])

    Percentage of vote: 18.28%

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#41 Nashten

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 01:52

I got into fountain pens because at one point, I was fully relying on computers to do my writing for me. Autocorrect and all that good stuff, and not to mention that I had hideous writing. 

 

So for me, it wasn't about just making my handwriting quality better, but it was for improving almost every aspect with the way I compose my words onto paper. 

 

I found my Grandpa's Underwood typewriter a while before I got into FP's, and I used that to train myself too, in typing and how I compose things. (Not music compose by the way!) I am still learning tons about how I write and how I can improve it. I'm 18 now and it is a shame that I didn't get into it when I was much younger--say 9 - 10. I got into it when I was 14. :)

 

If this was about typewriters, then it would be to improve my typing and technicalities, and because of someone close to me. I bet Gramps is happy up there seeing that his beloved typewriter is being used all the time, and being taken care of! 

 

And to think of it; if I hadn't discovered my soft spot for fountain pens and typewriters, I would not be writing novels right now, or short stories that would become word of the school! Those ways of writing bring out the best, and the most authenticity of what you do with your writing. 

My reasons are a bit more serious, as you can see! 


"Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often at times we call a man cold when he is only sad." ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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#42 bluejay

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 01:52

I love cleaning my dishes and taking out the garbage that I came into this hobby with one goal in mind to clean BSB stains in unreachable parts of pens. ...



#43 marcelo

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:00

I voted "Other", and the option would be "It looks cool, posh, cultured." smiley-cool14.gif



#44 pajaro

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:08

That's the way I've always done it.  (Went from dip pens to fountain pens in school in the 1950s).

 

They are more fun to take apart than ballpoints.

 

Fountain pens run against the currents of pen use.  Who wants to be like everyone else?


"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

They took the blue from the skies and the pretty girls' eyes and a touch of Old Glory too . . .


#45 N2theBreach

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:09

Did someone actually say that?  Were they old enough to know what POSH stands for?


Jar, were you thinking of the original meaning, "Port Out, Starbord Home" from the days when the only way to take a trip from England was by boat?

Or, the more generic meaning of a sense of style, being upscale, or what have you?

#46 Tom Aquinas

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:12

In second year university I had a bad accident with my hand. I found that writing with ball points the ink "dragged" tiring my hand, especially in lectures, tutes and exams. Fountain pens used wet ink and I found that they were easier on my hand and I also could write faster. i was also surprised to find that Shaeffer Skrip was better than Quink, with the SolvX . It is really only in the past 15-20 years that ball pens inks (with the exception of Cross which was always good)  are smoother to write with. Roller balls I considered but they are too expensive on refills lasting me only a fortnight even now. In fact i have just given away my last roller ball, a Caran d'Ache.I  went on the search for the "perfect pen" ...fortunately I still have not found it.



#47 swanjun

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:14

Two main reasons for me:

 

1) I have tendinitis in my right hand, and writing for any length of time tires out my hand considerably.  And yet, I review books online and love taking notes about them.  The solution? fountain pens, which do not tire me out NEAR as much as something that puts up more resistance to leaving some ink on a page.

 

2) Man, there are some GORGEOUS inks out there. 



#48 Runnin_Ute

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:24

Lots of reasons. The first one was bought to do signatures. (I was signing about 1600 sales tax returns per year at the time or over 130/month on average, some months were as much as 220) A ballpoint - even a nice one, wasn't cutting it anymore.

 

Now I just enjoy writing with one. A byproduct has been improved penmanship - especially my cursive, and that has taken an enormous jump just since December 2012. Just from writing. I hadn't written a letter to someone that wasn't done electronically in way to long. Now I look forward to the few letters I receive each month,so I can answer them.

 

There is a certain elegance with a fountain pen though. Even if no one else thinks so. The different size nibs and ink colors are a bonus. It means variety in a black and blue world. And right now I have three different pens with three different blue blacks in them. (plus a green and at least one black) I need to pick up a red or something.


Brad
 
"Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind" - Rudyard Kipling
"None of us can have as many virtues as the fountain-pen, or half its cussedness; but we can try." - Mark Twain
 


#49 brunico

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 03:48

Why use a fountain pen? Quite simply, because it's what one does...

 

I must admit I enjoy playing the reactionary card. The last time I was anywhere expensive, the Montblanc shop assistant asked me if I was after a ballpoint. "No," I said firmly, "a pen."

 

Still, I've never had to write on anything I couldn't use a fountain pen on - duplicate forms included - except film canisters, for which I keep a sharpie. Biros and rollerballs can tart themselves up as much as they like, but to me they remain the pedestrian tools that they are. No italic, no colours, no carbon ink, no interest. And the results all indistinguishable from a 20p Bic.

 

Gel pens, though, are great fun: lots of ink colours, metallic inks, glittery inks. These are the pens that deserve to be dressed to the nines in guilloche and lacquer and precious resin and rhoditanium-plated funky bits. For anything other than a fountain pen, an art store with its gel pens and fineliners and technical pens and gold-paint chisel markers will be far more rewarding than your average pen shop.

 

:)



#50 ronw

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 04:29

My reasons for using fountain pens are complicated. I actually gave up writing by hand for a really long time - about 20 years. I was strictly a keyboard person during that time. I wrote books, I wrote for magazines/newspapers, I wrote anything and everything but it was on a keyboard. 

 

I felt that the keyboard was the only way to write fast enough to keep up with my thoughts.

 

Lo and behold, about 8 months ago, my wife dug out a Montblanc pen that she had given me for my birthday in 1991. I spent a few hours cleaning it up, just to see, and was immediately hooked by writing with a good instrument. The feel of it, the way the words appeared on the page, and not least the slower-than-a-keyboard speed of writing by hand. It turns out, if you keep up with your thoughts, you write more than you need to. :-)

 

Now, I draw and write strictly with fountain pens, and I also use them for note-taking and just about anything and everything else. That original discovery still holds: they feel good. (And, having bought a few dozen pens to learn more about different types, I now have pens that are even better for me than that original Montblanc.)

 

I would even go so far as to say that I find it almost mystical to write with a superb pen - the strange mix of animal thought, feelings, pen on paper, the way words appear out of scratches on paper, expressing ideas and emotion - it's all magic, if you stop and think about it, and when I write with a fountain pen, I absolutely do get to slow down and feel all of that happening.

 

Rediscovering handwritten language has been a treat, to say the least, and doing it with fountain pens is just the best possible way.


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#51 PhilProf

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 04:49

I can't claim to know my own motives very well, but I tell myself I use fountain pens because they help me to think better than does typing, I prefer the look and behavior of liquid ink to gel or ball point, and I actively resist the assumption that newer technology = better technology.



#52 apkayle

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 06:31

My reasons:

 

  1. Ink colors are fun. I especially love inks that shade nicely.
  2. Fountain pens are smoother and easier to write with than ballpoints and save my hand from a lot of aching.
  3. I love the aesthetics, the historical background, and longevity of fountain pens. I look at vintage pens entering their second century of service and then I look at my pens and wonder if they'll be used and cared for by someone else a century from now.
  4. I NEED to incorporate pleasure into almost everything I do. The aesthetics and smooth writing characteristics of fountain pens add pleasure to my study sessions which involve lots of notetaking. 


#53 jar

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 12:34

Jar, were you thinking of the original meaning, "Port Out, Starbord Home" from the days when the only way to take a trip from England was by boat?

Or, the more generic meaning of a sense of style, being upscale, or what have you?

 

The Port out Starboard home has long been one explanation for the term even though it is almost certainly urban legend; I was thinking more along the lines of "Toffee Nosed".


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#54 dorothynotgale

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 13:03

I find them beautiful, and have ever since I was a kid. They are just very lovely objects to me.

 

I'm also an inveterate color coder, and having access to the wide range of truly good inks is a definite plus, especially when compared to BPs/felt tips/whatnot. The flexibility (no pun intended) to pair anything with anything, rather than being tied down to what manufacturers load their pens with, is another reason. Besides, it's much less wasteful than using disposable pens and trashing them.

 

Finally and most shallowly, I deliberately cultivate a retro aesthetic with my clothes, hats, and makeup, and fountain pens fit with that!  :blush:



#55 Paddler

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 13:09

If you hafta ask that . . .


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#56 GabrielleDuVent

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 13:12

The colour theme does seem to turn a lot of people to FP users. Someone once pointed out that I have four bottles of blue inks from different brands, and asked me why they were all half-used. He seemed baffled that the four blues were different blues. Same with blacks. "How can you have five different blacks? Black is black!"

 

If only that were true...!

 

jar: we still use that word. Quite heavily. Applicable to anything from Stiltons to pens. 


Tes rires retroussés comme à son bord la rose,

Effacent mon dépit de ta métamorphose;

Tu t'éveilles, alors le rêve est oublié. 

 

-Jean Cocteau, from Plaint-Chant, 1923


#57 Vendome

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 13:23

Further to my earlier response and jumping on the aesthetic bandwagon, I find that flourishing a fountain pen in public shows a debonair sense of style, (a la Cary Grant).

Even if it's only used on a mundane task such as signing a deposit slip that's being paid in at my local post office. :)


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#58 cybaea

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 13:41

I still have a weak shoulder and damaged hand from writing long essays in school with ballpoints. We never learned to use fountain pens (this was mid seventies and our teachers were young during the sixties - fountain pens were for the bourgeoisie).

 

In '93 my mother gave me a MB 149. Now I can write for hours (if I watch my shoulder position). We owe our parents so much…. :)

 

I like writing. Doubly, triply, or more, with a smooth fountain pen; +50% for an interesting ink.


I am no longer very active on FPN but feel free to message me. Or send me a postal letter!


#59 GabrielleDuVent

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 18:34

Further to my earlier response and jumping on the aesthetic bandwagon, I find that flourishing a fountain pen in public shows a debonair sense of style, (a la Cary Grant).

Even if it's only used on a mundane task such as signing a deposit slip that's being paid in at my local post office. :)

 

Yes, but if a rival whipped out a quill, you'd lose out. Quills, sir! Can't beat the quills!

 

I still have a weak shoulder and damaged hand from writing long essays in school with ballpoints. We never learned to use fountain pens (this was mid seventies and our teachers were young during the sixties - fountain pens were for the bourgeoisie).

 

In '93 my mother gave me a MB 149. Now I can write for hours (if I watch my shoulder position). We owe our parents so much…. :)

 

I like writing. Doubly, triply, or more, with a smooth fountain pen; +50% for an interesting ink.

 

Really? I went to primary school in the early 90s, and it was mandatory for us to learn how to use FPs in year 3. I remember one pupil brought in a Parker (you know, the kind that hangs off the racks in WH Smiths) and was considered quite posh. 

 

I remember wanting a flower-printed one from Body Shop, but alas, I just got a normal one. Good choice on my parents, I broke it within a year.


Tes rires retroussés comme à son bord la rose,

Effacent mon dépit de ta métamorphose;

Tu t'éveilles, alors le rêve est oublié. 

 

-Jean Cocteau, from Plaint-Chant, 1923


#60 queenofpens

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 19:10

I love the confusion it stirs up. A techie using such an "un-techie" instrument. Or is it? A fountain pen to me is the perfect blend of "simple" technology. By masterfully engineering an ink delivery system through the use of capillary action, a complex function is wrapped up in a seemingly simple fountain pen.I love it! Besides that I do love the variety of inks :lticaptd:

 

 

Myste  

 

 

I'm convinced that somebody besides me must have bought the Rotring Initial Data Pen, stylus on one end and fountain pen on the other, back in the Palm Pilot days.

 

And now I'm equally convinced that somebody or maybe many somebodys besides me must be buying the touch-screen stylus/fountain pen combos like the Levenger LTech and the Monteverde ones for my Ipad.

 

I don't see the contradiction myself - each technology is good for what it's good for - and even though I like some vintage pens, modern fountain pens are modern technology!







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