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Twsbi Mini, Cheap Paper, And Bad Blue Heron

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#1 ADEMiller

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 19:24

Hello everyone! I'm new to the FP network (about 5 minutes ago) and am still learning the ropes of both the network and the fountain pen itself. I am a  student in high school and just started using fountain pens this semester and am loving it. I own two Noodler's Ahabs and am looking to get something that will work better with cheap paper, as I cannot shell out money for Rodia, Clairefontaine and the like due to the fact that I take about 2-3 pages of notes a school day.I have been drawn to the TWSBI mini because of the modern design and because it seems to work well with cheap paper. Is this a good choice? If not what else? At the same time, I am looking for cheap paper that will bring out the best in my inks without feathering and such. Is Staplers Bagasse any good? And finally, if I do get the TWSBI mini, would Noodler's "Bad Blue Heron" be safe to use in it? 



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#2 mtnbiker62

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 19:54

I use the Staples Sustainable Earth 9.5x6 spiral bound notebooks for general note taking with my fountain pens, and it seems to do alright.  The coating is a bit inconsistent, so I get some feathering at times, but nothing too bad.  The bad part about these notebooks is that they are sold online only, so you have to order them and have them shipped to your local store.  It doesn't cost anything to ship them, but it does introduce a day or so delay into purchasing them.

 

As far as pens go, I usually use 2 TWSBI Minis to take notes, both with EF nibs.  If I'm using Noodler's ink, I use Noodler's Black in one and 54th Massachussetts in the other.  Both inks give me good permanence and protection from the occasional errant water bottle!


Edited by mtnbiker62, 29 December 2014 - 19:56.


#3 cjr

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:04

I've found that Black n' Red notebooks perform consistently well with any fountain pen and ink combo.They are also 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of Rhodia and Clairfontaine notebooks and readily available online at Amazon. I can't answer about the TWSBI Mini -- just ordered one myself and still waiting for it to arrive with Pendleton Brown Butterline Stub modification -- but I've found that a snap cap pen like a Pilot Metropolitan or Prera with medium nib works great for office (or school) use where you are constantly writing notes and capping and uncapping your pen. Screw caps just take too long for me in those situations.

 

My favorite utility inks are Noodler's Heart of Darkness, Noodlers 54th Massachusetts, and Pilot Blue. Noodlers Upper Ganges Blue is also a nice lighter blue. All are very permanent and fairly smudge resistant -- handy properties for office and school.


Favorite pen/ink pairings: Sheaffer Legacy w/18k extra fine inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Sheaffer PFM III fine w/14k inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Lamy 2000 EF with Noodler's 54th Massachusetts; Franklin Christoph 65 Stablis w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and DeAtramentis Document Blue; Pineider Avatar w/fine nib and Noodler's Bad Belted Kingfisher; Karas Kustoms Fountain K w/steel extra fine nib and Platinum Pigment Blue; Pilot Decimo w/18k fine nib and Noodles's Black; Franklin Christoph 45 w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and Noodler's Zhivago; Pilot Explorer w/medium nib and Noodler's El Lawrence; TWSBI ECO EF with Noodler's Bad Green Gator.

#4 Sailor Kenshin

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:11

Hello everyone! I'm new to the FP network (about 5 minutes ago) and am still learning the ropes of both the network and the fountain pen itself. I am a  student in high school and just started using fountain pens this semester and am loving it. I own two Noodler's Ahabs and am looking to get something that will work better with cheap paper, as I cannot shell out money for Rodia, Clairefontaine and the like due to the fact that I take about 2-3 pages of notes a school day.I have been drawn to the TWSBI mini because of the modern design and because it seems to work well with cheap paper. Is this a good choice? If not what else? At the same time, I am looking for cheap paper that will bring out the best in my inks without feathering and such. Is Staplers Bagasse any good? And finally, if I do get the TWSBI mini, would Noodler's "Bad Blue Heron" be safe to use in it?


Staples Bagasse is a favorite of mine. And I don't see why BBH wouldn't be okay in your pen.

#5 stephanos

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:14

I've had no problem with Bad Blue Heron, and I've used it in a decent vintage pen. I don't see why there would be a problem using it with a TWSBI Mini.

 

As you are expecting to write plenty, and on cheaper paper, you'd probably be looking for nib leaning towards the Fine end of the spectrum. If so, then (sticking with Noodler's) Bad Belted Kingfisher may suit you better than Bad Blue Heron, as it's a tad darker.

 

I am planning on getting a TWSBI Mini in the coming months, but don't have one yet so cannot comment on it.

However, I already have a 580, which has excellent performance, but the fact that it doesn't post makes it less attractive to me (hence the planned Mini acquisition). Having said that, if you don't like (or don't care) about posting your pens, then the 580 might actually be a better option, as it has an even bigger ink capacity and is an excellent size (if you like the Ahabs, then you'll be fine with the 580).

 

(As you're new, you may not know: "posting" refers to sticking the cap on the back of the pen: you cannot do so on the 580, but the Mini is designed to be used posted, and does so securely).



#6 kestrel

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:18

Some Staples stores (including my local one) carry the Bagasse paper in store.  

 

I use the Staples for a lot of things with a variety of inks and pens.  I get some show through with wetter writers and inks but not with Bad Belted Kingfisher, my closest equivalent to BBH.  My TWSBI 580 (with a broad Pendleton Butterline nib adjusted to a 7 flow) causes no problems on the paper, either.  If it is in your budget and your desire consider letting Pendleton grind/adjust your nib.  It makes a world of difference in the feel of the pen.


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#7 takkun

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:35

I've had the Ahab (and since lost it), and it doesn't seem to take too kindly to cheap paper. Or any paper. I wanted to love that pen, but I was not one who could work magic on it. 

 

Seconded on Red and Black, though when I used it in high school, I could only find it in ISO sizes and it wouldn't quite fit in binders. But man, was that stuff good. In Boston, the Staples near my university (At the Landmark center, for any of you other Bay Staters reading) had the bagasse paper, but it still felt and wrote like a cheap Mead comp book, so I didn't really take to them. FWIW, though, Rhodia staple-bound pads can be found for not too much online. 

 

I can't comment on the TWSBI, since I'm awaiting mine, and ordered it in a stub nib. I can say that for writing on cheap paper, especially the dreaded Blue Book exams, Noodler's Bernanke blue in a fine nib has treated me well. My pens of choice through most of high school and college were Lamys, since their EF and F nibs aren't wet and tend not to clog up from cheap paper.


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#8 Mr. JW

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 20:39

The Mini should work well for your needs. I have one that I use at work and it does well with the cheap-o paper there. Depending on how large your handwriting is, I would suggest either a fine (F) or extra-fine (EF) nib. My fine is a fairly wet writer and does have a bit of a tendency to feather and bleed on cheap paper.

 

As far as inks are concerned, you shouldn't have any issues with Bad Blue Heron. I have used Bad Green Gator with no problems with that or any other Noodler's inks. My only other suggestion would be to clean out the pen every so often, even if you are not changing inks. You don't have to be obsessive about it, but it's probably a good idea to give it a cleaning every 3 or 4 fills.


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#9 ADEMiller

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 21:25

So definitely a mini with a fine nib would work well for me, and looks like  Staples Sustainable Earth filler paper would be just about perfect. Does anyone know if I would be able to write on both sides using the TWSBI mini with a fine nib? Which out of these inks would react best with this pen/paper combo: (all Noodler's)

  • Kiowan Pecan
  • Sequoia Green
  • La Couleur Royale
  • Bad Blue Heron
  • Lexington Grey 

(These were Christmas presents)

If not any of these, what would be the best (Noodler's) ink for my conditions? I realize Noodler's X-Feather may be one of the best options, but I'm looking for something more color. 


Edited by ADEMiller, 29 December 2014 - 21:32.


#10 sean1e

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 21:31

IF your main "condition" is that its suitable for use on lower quality paper then - despite being black - Noodlers X Feather is the way to go. Will minimise feathering, flow well and black is... well... black, so good for notetaking that you can then highlight with colour (X Feather is bulletproof too so good for highlighting over / annotating around). In terms of bleedthrough or showthrough (the amount of ink you see when using both sides of paper) that totally depends on combo. Goulet PEns talk about the trifecta of Pen Paper and Ink... It's impossible to predict exactly what is going to work best, so your best thing to do it just jump in and start trying stuff out. Seems like you've got a good arsenal to get going with! Happy writing :)


Favourite Owned Pen - Lamy Studio, Brushed Steel with either a 1.1mm italic or Black F nib

Favourite Inks - Diamine Imperial Purple, Diamine Sargasso Sea, Noodlers Bad Blue Heron, Sheaffer Skrip Red

"Planned" (!) Purchases - TWSBI Diamond 580 AL, Waterman Expert Deluxe Blue, Esterbrook J, Sheaffer Prelude, Pilot Capless / Vanishing Point, Pilot Falcon


#11 ADEMiller

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 21:36

Maybe I should opt for X-Feather... It would work well with my Ahabs too I bet... But an interesting color would be nice.



#12 ac12

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Posted 29 December 2014 - 21:53

I personally think Clarifontaine and Rhodia paper for school is tremendous overkill $$$

 

I have Staples filler paper, made in BRAZIL.  Country of origin is important, as the Brazil paper is better for FP than the Egypt paper.

This is relatively inexpensive during the "back to school sale" in Aug.

 

If you can get sugar cane filler paper, all the better.  My sugar cane papers have stood up to anything I write on them.

They also have the sugar cane paper in pads.  Actually, I have only seen the lined sugar cane paper in pads, not as filler paper.  The sugar cane pads differ in quality and weight, so you will likely have to try a few to see which one you prefer.

 

If you use notebooks, I get Staples, single subject, wire bound, made in BRAZIL.  Again very good price in the 'back to school sale.'  I got mine for 17 CENTS each, and I scooped up 30 notebooks, which should last me a few years.   :D  

 

I prefer a "light" pen for school.  This way your hand does not get tired from taking notes all day.  2-3 pages a day is nothing.  I was taking 3+ pages of notes PER CLASS in college, each day.  That was a LOT of writing.  And the pen that I used in college was a Parker 45, and used P45 would still make great school pens.  The TWSBI at 19g qualifies as a light pen, so I would say OK to that as well.

 

You want a F or XF nib on your pen, to put down less ink; so your ink supply last longer, and less likely to bleed through.  Also some classes need you to write equations in your notes, and that is much easier to do with a XF nib.  But the finer the nib, the smoother the paper has to be.

 

tip, always carry a back up pen, for when your primary pen runs out of ink or fails. 

I always carried 2 Parker 45s in college; primary and backup pens.


Edited by ac12, 30 December 2014 - 06:22.

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#13 Quantum

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 00:17

Its kind of funny but I use some of the really cheap comp books from walmart sometimes and in the one  I'm using now my vac700 is the only pen I have that won't cause the ink to feather so bad its horrible.  Its got a F nib on it and I've even tried using the same ink in my 580 with an EF nib and it feathers horribly using that pen.  

 

Its an old Norcom comp book made in the U.S.  Not sure what's up with it, but even switching inks in the vac700 the new ink doesn't feather either.  I'm assuming its something with the nib.


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#14 gwyneddd

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 00:36

I love my TWSBI but I think I would not like a mini. I like a chunkier and a longer pen and the regular TWSBI 580 Diamond is a delightful pen. It has a relatively stiff nib, and it does seem to work on cheap paper, which I have in abundance at work. I fill it with Iroshizuku ink which is a very wet ink. It has an EF nib and I like it a lot--suggest the EF for cheap paper in particular. I've never used Bad Blue Heron, so can't advise on that. I seem to prefer Diamine inks, but perhaps someone else here can advise.

 

Ditto about the backup pen. (I use a Lamy.) The TWSBI has such a good capacity, I never run out of ink. I happen to LOVE this pen. I never liked EF nibs until this one. 

 

I have to say, of the inexpensive pens, Lamy and TWSBI are completely satisfactory. The TWSBI is cool looking in addition. 



#15 Jamerelbe

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 00:45

I have both a 580 and a Mini; I love them both, but the Mini is definitely a little more portable - and posted, is very similar in length to (though a little less 'girthy' than) the 580.  

 

That said, if you're looking for a fountain pen to use at school, I'd definitely recommend looking at a Pilot Metropolitan.  With a Fine nib, it's pretty conservative in terms of ink consumption (similar line width to TWSBI EF nib), which means much kinder when writing on cheap paper - and will be less of a disappointment if it's stolen or misplaced.  A Platinum Preppy is cheaper still - and the cartridges can easily be refilled with the ink of your choice if you don't want to buy a cartridge converter.

 

I really wouldn't want to discourage you buying the TWSBI Mini - it's a great pen - just wanting to mention another couple of options that are available to you!



#16 ac12

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 06:41

 

Its kind of funny but I use some of the really cheap comp books from walmart sometimes and in the one  I'm using now my vac700 is the only pen I have that won't cause the ink to feather so bad its horrible.  Its got a F nib on it and I've even tried using the same ink in my 580 with an EF nib and it feathers horribly using that pen.  

 

Its an old Norcom comp book made in the U.S.  Not sure what's up with it, but even switching inks in the vac700 the new ink doesn't feather either.  I'm assuming its something with the nib.

 

Q

My guess is that the Vac-700 is writing dry enough to limit the feathering.


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#17 Mr. JW

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 18:09

So definitely a mini with a fine nib would work well for me, and looks like  Staples Sustainable Earth filler paper would be just about perfect. Does anyone know if I would be able to write on both sides using the TWSBI mini with a fine nib? Which out of these inks would react best with this pen/paper combo: (all Noodler's)

  • Kiowan Pecan
  • Sequoia Green
  • La Couleur Royale
  • Bad Blue Heron
  • Lexington Grey 

(These were Christmas presents)

If not any of these, what would be the best (Noodler's) ink for my conditions? I realize Noodler's X-Feather may be one of the best options, but I'm looking for something more color. 

Of the inks you mention, I have only used Lexington Grey, but with good success on cheap paper. It's dark enough to read clearly, but not so dark that you get a lot of bleed through to the other side. Lexington Grey is also waterproof.


Jeff


#18 cambookpro

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Posted 30 December 2014 - 18:53

I've used Rhodia, Black 'n' Red, Clairfontaine and Oxford Optik paper. Honestly, I don't know why people seem to pine after Rhodia and Clairfontaine paper - I personally much prefer Black 'n' Red or the Optik paper, both of which are much cheaper. I found broad nibs to have bleedthrough on Rhodia which isn't present on the other aforementioned brands.


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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: twsbi, noodlers, warden series, staining, safe, inks, ink, noodlers ink, paper, cheap paper



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