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London Writing Equipment Show 2016

london pen show

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#1 pollandakuma

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Posted 14 July 2016 - 19:19

Hype! I am very hyped for this show, for this will be my first pen show. I've read in the 2015 that YOL and Conid will be there, along with others like Henry Simpole and Penamie. From the pictures it seems like the age group is slightly older though... Hope to make some friends :)

Who are going to do nib works there? I am thinking about getting my L2K grinded to a Japanese F...

So who's planning to go? And old-timers, could you tell me how it works and what to expect?
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#2 View from the Loft

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Posted 14 July 2016 - 19:51

John Sorowka is normally there for nib work. It's busy, but good fun.

The Writing Desk is another regular along with pen vendors from the UK and overseas.

#3 Martinsroom

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Posted 14 July 2016 - 22:47

The 2015 event was my first pen show after years of enjoying fountain pens via the web and online outlets. It was a fantastic day and I'm really looking forward to this year. It's opened up the community to me and I've expanded my scope into vintage and repair areas. You'll have a great time.

#4 Martinsroom

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Posted 14 July 2016 - 22:47

Deleted as repeat post

Edited by Martinsroom, 14 July 2016 - 22:48.


#5 pollandakuma

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 03:58

The 2015 event was my first pen show after years of enjoying fountain pens via the web and online outlets. It was a fantastic day and I'm really looking forward to this year. It's opened up the community to me and I've expanded my scope into vintage and repair areas. You'll have a great time.


How much is the entrance fee? Are you planning to go Early Bird?
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#6 pollandakuma

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 04:00

John Sorowka is normally there for nib work. It's busy, but good fun.
The Writing Desk is another regular along with pen vendors from the UK and overseas.


How much should I be prepared to pay for nib works?

I'm happy to hear that overseas people are coming. It is not easy to go tia pen show in DC xD
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#7 View from the Loft

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 06:44

How much should I be prepared to pay for nib works?

I'm happy to hear that overseas people are coming. It is not easy to go tia pen show in DC xD

 

It really depends on what needs doing to the nib, and whether he has time to do it there and then or needs to take it away with him.  so many people are there that he does try to make time for everyone by placing a limit on what he will do on the day, and what will be done afterwards and posted back to you.  So prices range from say, £20 upwards.  If you just want a nib smoothed a bit, he can probably do that for you there, but if you want a pen reground from e.g. a broad to a stub then no, he would normally take that away to do.

 

I'm not convinced that the early bird price is worth it.



#8 OilMugs

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 08:18

The WES show is quite special in the pen calendar. you will have plenty to see and do so my suggestion is that you pace yourself for a full day and I would back up vftl's suggestion of an early bird pass not being essential for an enjoyable day, you may even find that some dealers are still setting up so not especially welcoming to buyers.

 

Cash will be needed for the day, some will take credit cards but they are a minority.

 

The hotel is situated close to Russell Square station, for those people who are not used to travelling in London you will need an Oyster card which can be ordered in advance

 

https://oyster.tfl.g...er/link/0005.do

 

Unless you want to take taxis of course.

 

There is a Pret a Manger nearby which is useful to take a break from the show for coffee or lunch, the coffee at Pret is alsom much better than that offered by the hotel.

 

The room is normally very busy and very warm, if you have a wheelie case it may be better to leave it with the Hotel reception rather than have people tripping over your bag all day, with the added benifit of have two free hands.

 

In terms of having nib work done, John Sorowka is the best. If you know in advance what you are looking for then I would send him an email so that he has the opportunity to have something ready for you, you could also send the pen ahead of the show with instructions as to what you would like and then collect the pen at the show.

 

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#9 da vinci

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 08:45

The WES show is quite special in the pen calendar. you will have plenty to see and do so my suggestion is that you pace yourself for a full day and I would back up vftl's suggestion of an early bird pass not being essential for an enjoyable day, you may even find that some dealers are still setting up so not especially welcoming to buyers.
 
Cash will be needed for the day, some will take credit cards but they are a minority.
 
The hotel is situated close to Russell Square station, for those people who are not used to travelling in London you will need an Oyster card which can be ordered in advance
 
https://oyster.tfl.g...er/link/0005.do
 
Unless you want to take taxis of course.
 
There is a Pret a Manger nearby which is useful to take a break from the show for coffee or lunch, the coffee at Pret is alsom much better than that offered by the hotel.
 
The room is normally very busy and very warm, if you have a wheelie case it may be better to leave it with the Hotel reception rather than have people tripping over your bag all day, with the added benifit of have two free hands.
 
In terms of having nib work done, John Sorowka is the best. If you know in advance what you are looking for then I would send him an email so that he has the opportunity to have something ready for you, you could also send the pen ahead of the show with instructions as to what you would like and then collect the pen at the show.
 
.


All very good advice, I will be going and won't be an early bird!

It does get very crowded so I would recommend travelling light. I try to avoid taking a bag if at all possible

#10 da vinci

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 08:45

Sorry duplicate post

Edited by da vinci, 15 July 2016 - 08:47.


#11 pollandakuma

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 09:30

"Cash"
"Travel light"
this will be hard...
I guess there will be a a scheduled break for lunch?

What is the schudule for the show? When does it start and end?

Do I buy the pass on the day?
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#12 twdpens

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 09:31

It does get very crowded so I would recommend travelling light. I try to avoid taking a bag if at all possible

 

I second (third?) this advice. Although I'm on the "other side" so to speak I see a lot of visitors struggle with their luggage. A slim shoulder bag (that doesn't flop in the way) or very light rucsac is all that's required.

 

See you all in October!

 

Martin


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#13 twdpens

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 09:35

"Cash"
"Travel light"
this will be hard...


I guess you could ask the hotel to store a bag for you (for a generous tip...).
 

I guess there will be a a scheduled break for lunch?


No. Eat on the go.
 

What is the schudule for the show? When does it start and end?


No schedule. Doors open at 10.30 http://www.ukpenshow...ondon-pen-show/
 

Do I buy the pass on the day?


Yes.

 

 

HTH,

 

Martin


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#14 Tas

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 09:40

This will be my third consecutive year and, as (cash) everyone has mentioned so far, is a lovely (cash) day out for pen & ink fans. (Cash).

 

The room is warm and very busy (cash). Even a small rucksack will impede your progress around the (cash) many Alladin's cavesque tables.

 

Don't be shy, try and muster up the courage to talk to as many (cash) people as you dare as it's probably the only chance you'll get to be in a room (cash) with so many people who can sympathise with your pen related obsession. (Cash)

 

Oh. You'll need cash.   :)

 

 

See you there.

 

*Apologies to the late, great Spike Milligan.



#15 twdpens

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 09:55

Bigger dealers will take cards (we do, for example) but cash is still king. Card processing costs (and the banks have enough money already) so you won't get the best deals with a card payment.

 

HTH,

 

Martin


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#16 Tas

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 10:04

Bigger dealers will take cards (we do, for example) but cash is still king. Card processing costs (and the banks have enough money already) so you won't get the best deals with a card payment.

 

HTH,

 

Martin

 

Oh you temptress you . . .   :)



#17 da vinci

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 12:28

I think the WES team manning the door may allow you to leave luggage there (they did last time) but obviously at your own risk. You may want to check in advance if this is essential to you.

Some dealers may also take PayPal (assuming you can do this from a mobile device) but it depends on the creation of a relationship of mutual trust and confidence. Cash is best.

#18 Tojusi

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 13:46

Yes, surely cash is king. However, these days there are many "disruptive" payment solutions that make it easy and relatively cheap to accept card payments. For example, Finnish crafts sellers who go to fairs and market squares all seem to take card payments these days, using a tablet and a small card reader. I believe that the initial payment for the device is like 50 euro range, no monthly fees, only a per transaction fee or percentage.

Sure, they may sell their wares almost every weekend, but on the other hand, there are many pen shows in the UK. Plus, the London show at least has vendors coming in who appear to travel the continental pen shows as well.

Card payment would offer convenience for the visitors who may be carrying anything from let's say 50-100 GBP range to thousand(s) in cash. Imagine the cash some vendors will be carrying around... Of course, the pen stock the move around is expensive as well.

In the past two years, I have been lucky that there has been a work event in London on Thursday and Friday before the London show so I have been able to make a long weekend of it. This year they moved that to the first week of September. I haven't yet decided whether to take a separate trip for the pen show.

#19 View from the Loft

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 15:33

While I agree that mobile card payment has moved on, the payment processing still takes a fairly hefty commission.  On top of that, tables at the show won't be cheap.  I appreciate that many of the vendors here do give some show discounts, and yet their overheads for the day are higher.  I want people like TWD, Cathedral Pens etc to stay in business so I'm happy to pay them in cash - or whatever payment form they would prefer (legal, of course :))

 

There is another advantage of cash - once I've spent it, I've spent it.  I can't break my budget (much to my OH's relief).


Edited by View from the Loft, 15 July 2016 - 15:33.


#20 pollandakuma

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Posted 15 July 2016 - 17:57

Ah, I guess this places a cap on the amount I can spend to about less than two hundred. Even if I really want that Conid or that MB 13x or that YOL, I guess maybe next time... :( I can't and don't feel safe lugging about more than a hundred pounds, and I doubt my parents would allow that to happen either haha
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