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How Old Are Fountain Pen Users?

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74 replies to this topic

Poll: How old are fountain pen users? (207 member(s) have cast votes)

How old are fountain pen users?

  1. <15 (2 votes [0.97%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 0.97%

  2. 15-24 (25 votes [12.08%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 12.08%

  3. 25-34 (45 votes [21.74%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 21.74%

  4. 35-44 (36 votes [17.39%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 17.39%

  5. 45-54 (38 votes [18.36%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 18.36%

  6. 55-64 (40 votes [19.32%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 19.32%

  7. 65-75 (17 votes [8.21%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 8.21%

  8. >75 (4 votes [1.93%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 1.93%

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#21 bongo47

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 04:36

It's also interesting to consider the country differences since some may have grown up with them in schools, while for others not. So then the question becomes, at what age and why does the utilitarian routine aspect get superseded by the enthusiast element in such a way as to lead someone to this forum. In the U.S. I'm guessing almost all FP users fall into that enthusiast category.

Of course too, my kids have all be given a FP by me, but they think I'm crazy for flipping thru eBay for more. They won't be in the above poll (parental controls are set also so they're not talking to strangers on forums even if they'd want to). BTW, a good trick to get kids to do impromptu writing in summer is to have a pack of colorful Jinhao 599s arrive.

"We can become expert in an erroneous view" --Tenzin Wangyal Rinoche

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#22 Mastiff

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 04:43

Thank you for posting this. I find this topic most interesting. Although there will be a distinct bias and problems with sampling I think the results of this poll may be an interesting relfection of the fountain pen population.

 

There must be sociologists and statisticians here. Can we look at the correlation with not just the participant age but also other variables as well?? I think we have a publishable research topic here.



#23 bongo47

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 05:01

Thank you for posting this. I find this topic most interesting. Although there will be a distinct bias and problems with sampling I think the results of this poll may be an interesting relfection of the fountain pen population.
 
There must be sociologists and statisticians here. Can we look at the correlation with not just the participant age but also other variables as well?? I think we have a publishable research topic here.


Yep I'd qualify as such, which is why I'm wondering what else could be measured. Current age, nationality are a good start, but we'd need to also map out where schools and perhaps broader culture still use them, and also perhaps who is in the trade (maker, seller, artist/calligrapher...). In a sense, we're talking about who places fountain pens and the associated community within their identity and who may simply use them or not. And then trying to identify how that develops by age, exposure, other interests and what not.

Any doctoral students out there looking for a dissertation idea, cause I sit on committees (just saying).

"We can become expert in an erroneous view" --Tenzin Wangyal Rinoche

#24 erpe

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 05:29

Might be interesting but you will only get the stats for the forum, obviously. The vast majority of FP users might not think the question is relevant, it's just their daily tool and use it without imagining it can ever be something of a 'hobby'.Since almost all elementary schools in this country use the fountain pen as weapon of choice to teach handwriting, the average age could be lower than you would expect by browsing through an office environment (for example).



#25 perfaddict

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 06:39

53. Started using FPs at the age of 8. 



#26 Jerome Tarshis

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 06:53

I don't believe most Americans who use fountain pens are enthusiasts. I am an American, and most of the people I've known personally who use FPs have not been enthusiasts, or even been aware that there was such a thing as a fountain-pen enthusiast.

 

It was only rather recently in my life that I found out about FP nuts. Lots of people just use them, one or several, without any wish or need to come into contact with the world represented by FPN. Which is why major manufacturers aren't coming to us asking what we think. If you're selling a lot of FPs, you aren't selling most of them to us.


Edited by Jerome Tarshis, 13 September 2015 - 06:54.


#27 Mastiff

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 07:02

Well said erpe and Jerome, hence is why I said distinct bias and sampling problems :)



#28 Serlo

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 08:41

I'm 37, but if you had asked the very same question 28 years ago and any time in between my answer would still have been that I'm a fountain pen user. About 60% of my students use fountain pens, so, at least in Germany, I don't think that pen manufacturers are in trouble. However, my pens are more expensive than they used to be.
Andreas

#29 Ian the Jock

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 08:52

I'm 48 and held my first fountain pen at 47.

In school it was pencils, then an upgrade to biros in secondary school, although we were taught "joined up writing" from a young age.

Ian

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It’s just a shame that you can only look at it through a rain soaked car window.
 
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#30 Sandy Fry

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 09:22

51 Here. Started using FP's in Primary School in the Homeland ( Scotland ). Everyone ( more or less ) switched to ballpoints when I was around 7 and I never used another FP until about 4 years ago. Now, I don't write with anything other than a fountain pen.

 

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#31 Almu

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 10:42

I'm 25. Been using fountain pens for about 7 months.



#32 Hans-Gabriel

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 12:12

Yep I'd qualify as such, which is why I'm wondering what else could be measured. Current age, nationality are a good start, but we'd need to also map out where schools and perhaps broader culture still use them, and also perhaps who is in the trade (maker, seller, artist/calligrapher...). In a sense, we're talking about who places fountain pens and the associated community within their identity and who may simply use them or not. And then trying to identify how that develops by age, exposure, other interests and what not.

Any doctoral students out there looking for a dissertation idea, cause I sit on committees (just saying).

 

Bongo

It's been a while since I wanted to make this poll.

I think the first bias comes from the platform on which the poll is made.  Only people using a computer and active on the forum might answer.  

But it probably gives a good idea .



#33 bongo47

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 12:58

Bongo
It's been a while since I wanted to make this poll.
I think the first bias comes from the platform on which the poll is made.  Only people using a computer and active on the forum might answer.  
But it probably gives a good idea .

Agreed. It's just a forum poll, a conversation starter. It certainly has sparked my mind to think of the various ways people -even within this forum -have been introduced to the object, and how they now relate to it and others with respect to it. Here in the U.S. I'm guessing it's more effortfull to remain exclusively FP (heck even within my own household it makes me odd). What motivates that effort (and I'm guessing there many motivations) is where some interesting, and perhaps generalizable beyond the object, things may be found.

Edited by bongo47, 13 September 2015 - 13:01.

"We can become expert in an erroneous view" --Tenzin Wangyal Rinoche

#34 kpatters5274

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 14:38

I'm 28. I played around with an occasional Varsity when I was a teenager, but I didn't really get into using FPs until last year. 



#35 tbickiii

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 14:54

46 now.  Started using/collecting at 31


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#36 Haribon

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 15:24

I'm 63. Learned to use fountain pen at 10. Writing with them on and off until I chanced upon this site 5 years ago.


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#37 e-beth

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 15:49

Yep I'd qualify as such, which is why I'm wondering what else could be measured. Current age, nationality are a good start, but we'd need to also map out where schools and perhaps broader culture still use them, and also perhaps who is in the trade (maker, seller, artist/calligrapher...). In a sense, we're talking about who places fountain pens and the associated community within their identity and who may simply use them or not. And then trying to identify how that develops by age, exposure, other interests and what not.

Any doctoral students out there looking for a dissertation idea, cause I sit on committees (just saying).

 

So, the question is actually:  what age are fountain pen enthusiasts?  Of course, not all fountain pen enthusiasts are on active on the FPN, but it might be a good way to get some preliminary data in order to see if there's an interesting topic to be pursued.  For instance, the poll shows that the two biggest groups are ages 25-34 and 55-64.  That might indicate that fountain pens are enjoying a resurgence or it might just be that people 25-34 are more interested/knowledgeable about forums.  To pursue that question, you might start polling local, in-person pen clubs like the SF Pen Posse to see if 25-34 year olds are over-represented in those groups.  Or, it may just be that those two age groups are the ones most likely to not have young children at home (given that more and more people are waiting until they are in their 30s to have children) and so they have more time to visit forums and indulge in hobbies.

 

From people's responses, I would say another variable is whether or not a person was introduced to fountain pens in school.  That data seems to correlate to a person's country of origin, so another question might be whether there are more fountain pen enthusiasts per capita in countries where fountain pens are used in elementary schools.


Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge.

--Carl Sagan

 


#38 heavyhorses

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 16:16

I'm 35, and I was taught to use a fountain pen in school in England (we moved on to them from pencils at around age 7) - and it was obligatory to use them, no biros allowed (and Sheaffer No-Nonsenses only in the junior school, because for some reason they'd decided they were best for developing handwriting).  In the senior school your choice of pen was allowed after age 13, but by then I'd moved to another school who allowed you to use biros, and fountain pens were seen as quite old-fashioned.



#39 searcher18

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 16:31

It's also interesting to consider the country differences since some may have grown up with them in schools, while for others not. So then the question becomes, at what age and why does the utilitarian routine aspect get superseded by the enthusiast element in such a way as to lead someone to this forum. In the U.S. I'm guessing almost all FP users fall into that enthusiast category.

Of course too, my kids have all be given a FP by me, but they think I'm crazy for flipping thru eBay for more. They won't be in the above poll (parental controls are set also so they're not talking to strangers on forums even if they'd want to). BTW, a good trick to get kids to do impromptu writing in summer is to have a pack of colorful Jinhao 599s arrive.

My 7 year old grandson already has a pen collection but his cursive is still pretty weak. He primarily uses fountains to sketch. Right now his cursive is pretty weak and hopefully with time his eye hand coordination will improve. The real trick to teaching your grandchildren to use fountain pens is to teach your kids and the grandchildren will mimic their parents.



#40 deepak23

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 16:50

44
Using FPs since 8. My first FP was a sky blue 'Bismi'. Graduated to a Hero336 at 11 and to my grandfather's sheaffer imperial and the parker 45 flighter at 15.
Have been using FP all along except for two years of misguided youth when the lure of BPs proved to hard to resist...;

A lifelong FP user...






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