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Inky Question For Ef Nib Users


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#81 Misfit

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 21:49

 
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Oh thank you Liz! You and Mr. Hippo made my Fountain Pen Day happier than it seemed like it was going to be. Mr. Hippo is a smart fellow.
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#82 LizEF

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 21:56

Oh thank you Liz! You and Mr. Hippo made my Fountain Pen Day happier than it seemed like it was going to be. Mr. Hippo is a smart fellow.

 

:) Glad we could brighten your FPD.  Mr. Hippo has a sarcastic streak.  And he keeps "borrowing" my pens. :rolleyes:  He especially likes green ink and his Hippo Noto notebook.  Go figure.



#83 Misfit

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 23:43

I like green ink too.  Hr. Hippo is a smart one.  Do you like the Hippo Noto notebooks?  I've never tried one.  Oh, and as for stub and italic nibs, they do seem to add to handwriting with the thins and thicks.  I found that with TWSBI, the 580 italic nib is a bit wider than the Eco italic nib.  The 580 is probably a true 1.1mm, whereas the Eco is not as wide.  If anyone wants to try the Nemosine with their stub, and is an EF fan, try the 0.6.

 

Otherwise, pay up for Franklin-Christoph and get their Fine Italic Cursive nib.  I have the B one, and it's lovely to write with. F-C also has a nib called needlepoint, which looks like a very fine writer.  Or go cheap and try a Pilot Plumix with its medium calligraphy nib, which is a very nice nib, but not very fine as in narrow.


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#84 LizEF

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Posted 03 November 2018 - 00:26

   Do you like the Hippo Noto notebooks? 

 

Yes, very nice.  I like the feel of the cover - almost a cross between leather and rubber.  The elastic to keep it closed is perfect - I've opened and closed it numerous times and it's still just the right tightness to keep it securely closed..  The paper is Tomoe River - 68gsm.  Mine are both cream (one dot, one lined).  I kinda wish I'd gotten one of the ivory, but hopefully they'll be around for a while and start having regular stock - a lined ivory with brown cover would be perfect to me.

 

They do have the slight problem of being really thick, so if you're toward the start or end of the book, where the two sides are significantly different in thickness (a few pages vs about an inch of pages), you have to find ways to adapt, especially if your hands are small, which mine are.  The easiest thing is to have another book (or two) to put under the thin side, so it lies flat and you can write to the inside seam, and/or to put at the bottom edge so your hand isn't dangling off the bottom edge when you get to the bottom of the page on the thick side.

 

Despite this weirdness, I still really like it.  I only use mine when at a desk, so grabbing a book, or otherwise compensating for the difference in thickness on the two sides isn't inconvenient.  If you wanted to write on the go where there's no desk and/or no books, it might be annoying - probably depends on the person and how you position your hand while writing.



#85 Misfit

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Posted 10 January 2019 - 08:35

Will you alert us here when you post your first video review?
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#86 LizEF

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Posted 10 January 2019 - 14:24

Will you alert us here when you post your first video review?

 

Yes.  I'm delayed - not as much free time as I anticipated, and the quality of my camera is in doubt (and no money to buy a good one).  But still hoping to do the reviews.



#87 Karmachanic

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Posted 10 January 2019 - 16:13


 

They do have the slight problem of being really thick,

 

 You talking about me again? :( :(


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#88 LizEF

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Posted 10 January 2019 - 18:01

 You talking about me again? :( :(

 

:lol: Only if you're a Hippo Noto notebook.



#89 Intensity

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 02:38

Excellent project!

I have developed a prejudice against modern EF pens (such as steel nibbed, dry flow Lamy Safaris). They make most inks look pale and dull. Vintage gold -nibbed pens with simple feeds can be firehoses in comparison and provide much darker, more saturated lines at the same nib width. For completeness, I'd include writing from a standard dry Lamy Safari/All-star EF (very popular, commonly owned pens) and at least one vintage gold nib EF pen--if possible--with naturally high flow. Despite equal nib width, they are different beasts entirely.

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#90 A Smug Dill

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 02:49

Lamy steel EF nibs, generally speaking (at least from my first-hand experience), are neither dry nor thus limit the line width on the page, compared to Japanese Fine (let alone Extra Fine) nibs.

 

As a fountain pen user who prefers narrow line widths – however you want to designate the nib widths that product them – a good ink is one that shows pleasing colours, little or no feathering and bleed-through, and shading and sheen where applicable, in spite of (say) a 0.3mm line width – even if it means I have look very closely to see the shading or sheen, that being a physical limitation of my eyes and visual perception as opposed to the technical performance of the ink.


A discussion about objects, techniques and applications should not be a contest of personal values. Your values mean nothing to me and require naught from me, and I'll gladly assume my values equally mean nothing to you and do not impose on you in any way; my dissenting views do not oppress your personal views, when neither of us can claim to represent the majority position or consensus, or speak on behalf of the community of fountain pen hobbyists worldwide. Let's treat each other with due respect prescribed by some entity bigger than either of us without our input and just offer our sentimental opinions of no particular standing with anyone else, without trying to control the narrative, or demand moral support and/or solidarity from others as consumers and users.

#91 LizEF

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 03:14

Excellent project!

I have developed a prejudice against modern EF pens (such as steel nibbed, dry flow Lamy Safaris). They make most inks look pale and dull. Vintage gold -nibbed pens with simple feeds can be firehoses in comparison and provide much darker, more saturated lines at the same nib width. For completeness, I'd include writing from a standard dry Lamy Safari/All-star EF (very popular, commonly owned pens) and at least one vintage gold nib EF pen--if possible--with naturally high flow. Despite equal nib width, they are different beasts entirely.

 

Lamy Al-Star is possible, but not a vintage gold nib.  But....

 

Lamy steel EF nibs, generally speaking (at least from my first-hand experience), are neither dry nor thus limit the line width on the page, compared to Japanese Fine (let alone Extra Fine) nibs.

 

As a fountain pen user who prefers narrow line widths – however you want to designate the nib widths that product them – a good ink is one that shows pleasing colours, little or no feathering and bleed-through, and shading and sheen where applicable, in spite of (say) a 0.3mm line width – even if it means I have look very closely to see the shading or sheen, that being a physical limitation of my eyes and visual perception as opposed to the technical performance of the ink.

 

And that last paragraph describes more my original idea.  Part of my struggle with getting started is:

 

1) Do I stick to EF nibs, despite the line width; or do I use my finest nibs, regardless of their nib size designation.

 

2) And either way, do I use them all (that's a lot of pens) or some, and if only some, which some.  I really don't relish the idea of inking up several pens to show a variety.  Seems like a lot of cleaning work and I'm not sure the benefit isn't already available in regular ink reviews, which regularly show western EF and broader nibs.

 

My intent was not:

 

a) How the ink looks from this nib vs that nib

 

b ) How the ink looks from a fatter nib compared to a narrower nib

 

c) How the ink looks in a variety of nibs

 

Rather, I wanted to show how the ink looked in a very narrow nib - Japanese EF range.  Anything fatter than that, and you can likely see how it looks in existing reviews, but that range often isn't covered in ink reviews.  I wanted people who use really fine nibs to see the things A Smug Dill describes - can you see a color (or what color do you see), is there shading or sheen (I usually keep silent when people yammer on about how you can't see this from narrow nibs, but I find it not unusual to see this in Japanese EF nibs - you just have to look for it), does it flow well and how does writing with it feel.  These are the sorts of things that I always wanted to see in ink reviews (and didn't), and I don't think I need a variety of pens / nibs to do this - just one very fine pen.

 

I suppose I should just brace myself for others to be disappointed in whatever I choose, figure out what my finest nib is, and just use that one nib / ink for everything.  I had been thinking about a Pilot Penmanship EF, but I don't think that's my finest nib.  I think my Platinum 3776 Century SF might be, or maybe my Pilot Falcon SEF.  One nice thing about both pens is that they can simulate wetter and fatter by simply applying pressure - sure, it's not exactly the same, but with just a bit of pressure, I'm not sure you could tell the difference (as opposed to applying pressure to their limits).


Edited by LizEF, 21 January 2019 - 03:14.


#92 ENewton

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 03:37

 

I suppose I should just brace myself for others to be disappointed in whatever I choose, figure out what my finest nib is, and just use that one nib / ink for everything.  I had been thinking about a Pilot Penmanship EF, but I don't think that's my finest nib.  I think my Platinum 3776 Century SF might be, or maybe my Pilot Falcon SEF.  One nice thing about both pens is that they can simulate wetter and fatter by simply applying pressure - sure, it's not exactly the same, but with just a bit of pressure, I'm not sure you could tell the difference (as opposed to applying pressure to their limits).

 

I'm sure the community will be grateful for whatever you share.



#93 LizEF

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 04:08

I'm sure the community will be grateful for whatever you share.

 

Thank you!  After writing that post, I actually felt pretty good about the conclusion.  I'll use my Falcon SEF nib (ink log shows it a tiny bit finer than the Platinum).

 

Now I just have to do a test run of my video and photography setup to see how good / bad the lighting / focus is.  I figured I could do some photos along with the videos, so both options are available.

 

I also need to experiment with my audio idea.  Right now, my thought is to attach a contact mike to the pen - it doesn't pick up enough when attached to the writing surface, but does pick up something from the pen.  Then compare that input to the camera's audio and see which might be more useful - if either.  It may just come down to my subjective impression of how the pen feels while writing.

 

Sigh.  That part feels like work - once it's done, the actual reviews will be easy (by comparison).

 

Thanks for the encouragement!



#94 A Smug Dill

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Posted 23 January 2019 - 02:15

Rather, I wanted to show how the ink looked in a very narrow nib - Japanese EF range.  Anything fatter than that, and you can likely see how it looks in existing reviews, but that range often isn't covered in ink reviews.  I wanted people who use really fine nibs to see the things A Smug Dill describes - can you see a color (or what color do you see), is there shading or sheen (I usually keep silent when people yammer on about how you can't see this from narrow nibs, but I find it not unusual to see this in Japanese EF nibs - you just have to look for it), does it flow well and how does writing with it feel.  These are the sorts of things that I always wanted to see in ink reviews (and didn't), and I don't think I need a variety of pens / nibs to do this - just one very fine pen.


Firstly, I just want to thank you for persisting with the project, and look forward to seeing your ink reviews when you're ready. Between debilitating tendonitis in my writing hand (which, thankfully, seems to be subsiding after three agonising months – but only with the caveat of less alcohol and more sleep, even now) and some of the 'views' of would-be readers of ink reviews, I've lost a lot of drive to experiment with different inks I have and present the findings in the form of reviews.
 

I suppose I should just brace myself for others to be disappointed in whatever I choose,


I'm long since decided there is no need to brace myself against others' expressed disappointment or even criticism, any more than I need to brace myself for oncoming traffic on the other side of the road when driving. The point of writing and publishing reviews has always been, and (in my view) should always be, about what the reviewer does and/or think is meaningful to do, not what other (ink, road, etc.) users want to do or know. It's neither a service to others (out of social obligation, or as for-profit enterprise) nor a requirement for community membership. If there's a gap in what you want to know about an ink (from scouring already-published reviews, and the manufacturers' product specifications, etc.), find out; if you choose to share what you find out, thank you. Nobody has the entitlement to get what they want to know all curated, tailored and presented to them on a platter, if they're not paying someone to do all that work in order to maximise the value of spending their own 'precious' time in reading the reviews produced by others.

Let's just say... I have more spare whatever than sense, and I've even ordered a pH meter from the US that seems to be unwanted old stock, offered at a good price on eBay but cost me a pretty penny to have it shipped to Australia through the eBay Global Shipping Programme (or whatever it is called). However, whether an ink is (presumably, by its acidity, akalinity or whatever characteristic) dangerous for vintage pens, rubber sacs, etc. is really not a concern I personally have, and so it deserves zero effort on my part to find out. That I have the ink 'to spare' and a pH meter to use does not somehow oblige me to investigate, on the basis that it would cost me less, than it would cost someone else who is keenly interested in that aspect. If the information is of such value to them, why don't they pay a commensurate price (in terms of time, effort and materials, and not necessarily paying for content subscription or bespoke service) to find out themselves?

For sheen, I see two different aspects: whether an ink (as manufactured and/or supplied) has the capability or potential to produce sheen, and whether a particular user's specific applications (with specific pens, nibs, papers, and handwriting technique/style) would tap into that capability or potential. I don't like wasting ink for that kind of investigation, but all the same, I used a small eyedropper to squeeze a couple of large drops onto little rectangular pieces of Arttec Como Sketch Pad 210gsm paper (as opposed to my favourite paper for showing sheen: 'waterproof' stone paper), then let them dry. You'll see the inks' potential for sheen alright; some sheen 'harder' and more readily than others. However, the only user application that matters in my review is mine: with a narrow 'everyday writing' nib of my choice, on paper of my choice, in handwriting styles of my choice (and ability). If someone else wants to confirm whether the sheening potential (evidence from the dried drops of ink) would translate to their writing applications, then it's really up to them to experiment/test and find out at their expense. Obviously, if someone else is also predisposed to write with very narrow nibs on Rhodia paper, then the published results of my investigations would probably be more useful to them, and I don't begrudge that at all.

(By the way, I was actually looking for a blue or blue-black ink that does not sheen, to go into a designated 'business' pen. Diamine Denim seems to be the best fit I've come up with, so far.)


A discussion about objects, techniques and applications should not be a contest of personal values. Your values mean nothing to me and require naught from me, and I'll gladly assume my values equally mean nothing to you and do not impose on you in any way; my dissenting views do not oppress your personal views, when neither of us can claim to represent the majority position or consensus, or speak on behalf of the community of fountain pen hobbyists worldwide. Let's treat each other with due respect prescribed by some entity bigger than either of us without our input and just offer our sentimental opinions of no particular standing with anyone else, without trying to control the narrative, or demand moral support and/or solidarity from others as consumers and users.

#95 LizEF

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Posted 23 January 2019 - 03:10

Firstly, I just want to thank you for persisting with the project, and look forward to seeing your ink reviews when you're ready. Between debilitating tendonitis in my writing hand (which, thankfully, seems to be subsiding after three agonising months – but only with the caveat of less alcohol and more sleep, even now) and some of the 'views' of would-be readers of ink reviews, I've lost a lot of drive to experiment with different inks I have and present the findings in the form of reviews.

 

Thank you for the encouragement.  I hope your hand finishes its healing quickly - I can't imagine how frustrating that would be.

 

And thank you for the reminder not to let myself get sidetracked by trying to fulfill every wish of the community.  I do want to provide something useful to others, but that isn't the same as killing myself to put together a grand production that goes well beyond the gap I wanted to fill.  And it was the indecision and sense of being overwhelmed with all the things that could go into an ink review (and how much time and work that would require) that were mostly delaying me.  Now that I've decided to simply go forward with filling the gap I originally wanted to fill, I'm much more relaxed about it.

 

At the moment, the primary delay is that I have too many pens inked. :D  When a few of them run out, I'll pick my first ink, record my intro video, and then the first review.  Hopefully that will happen at the start of February (hard to tell when I'll use up all this ink already in my pens, but I'm trying).

 

I'll post back here when I have my first videos up.  And I plan to pull some photos as well, to go in a separate thread about each ink, so those who don't like videos can just look at the photos.  They probably won't count as official ink reviews - given the rules posted in that forum - so I'll post them here in Inky Thoughts.



#96 A Smug Dill

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Posted 24 January 2019 - 01:00

is there shading or sheen (I usually keep silent when people yammer on about how you can't see this from narrow nibs, but I find it not unusual to see this in Japanese EF nibs - you just have to look for it)

 
Absolutely. It's easy enough to prove that the shortcoming and/or limitation is with the viewer's eyes and not the nib-ink-paper combination, as least as far as shading goes, though:
 
fpn_1548291335__buddha_written_in_kon-pe
 
By the way, that was Pilot Iroshizuku kon-peki on Rhodia Bloc No.16 80g/m2 paper, using a horribly broad pretender of an EF nib… in upside-down orientation.

Sheen can be exhibited by lines with widths in the 'Japanese EF nib' range, which for example Platinum states as 0.24-0.28mm.

fpn_1548340041__macro_shot_of_sheen_from

Whether the reviewer's pen(s) can produce such artefacts in desired shapes (for example, when lettering or drawing) using the ink in question is a different matter, and that's assuming he/she actually wants to elicit sheen, at least for the purpose of the ink review, to demonstrate whether it is practically possible for a user (who, in that case, is not the reader of the review) to succeed at that.

 

Whether the individual reader of the review – and prospective user of the ink – has the equipment or technique to do the same in his/her intended applications is something else yet again, and another step removed from what is the characteristic and potential of the ink. Nobody else cares whether he/she needs to see sheen to be satisfied with (say) a piece of handwriting, or whether he/she has the capability to achieve such satisfaction if he/she subsequently chooses to fill a pen with that ink.

 

Capturing sheen with a camera, even where the visual phenomenon is relatively easy to see, can be bloody tricky and difficult:

 

fpn_1548344837__micro-sheen_from_writing

 

fpn_1548344875__micro-sheen_from_writing


 


Edited by A Smug Dill, 24 January 2019 - 15:50.

A discussion about objects, techniques and applications should not be a contest of personal values. Your values mean nothing to me and require naught from me, and I'll gladly assume my values equally mean nothing to you and do not impose on you in any way; my dissenting views do not oppress your personal views, when neither of us can claim to represent the majority position or consensus, or speak on behalf of the community of fountain pen hobbyists worldwide. Let's treat each other with due respect prescribed by some entity bigger than either of us without our input and just offer our sentimental opinions of no particular standing with anyone else, without trying to control the narrative, or demand moral support and/or solidarity from others as consumers and users.

#97 XYZZY

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Posted 24 January 2019 - 02:47

 
Absolutely. It's easy enough to prove that the shortcoming and/or limitation is with the viewer's eyes and not the nib-ink-paper combination, as least as far as shading goes, though:
 
fpn_1548291335__buddha_written_in_kon-pe
 
By the way, that was Pilot Iroshizuku kon-peki on Rhodia Bloc No.16 80g/m2 paper, using a horribly broad pretender of an EF nib… in upside-down orientation.

 

Sorry for the thread tangent... Dill, what comparator do you use?  I've seen you post many photos through that and it seems good.  What do you have, and would you recommend it?  Also, how do you photograph through it?



#98 A Smug Dill

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Posted 24 January 2019 - 03:26

Dill, what comparator do you use?  I've seen you post many photos through that and it seems good.  What do you have, and would you recommend it?  Also, how do you photograph through it?


I'm afraid the loupe I use is just an unbranded one I bought on eBay. The model number is CLMG-7173-LED, and Google returns some hits if you search by that. It didn't cost me a whole lot, and it has a built-in LED light that comes in quite handy sometimes.

For the photography, I use a Sony α65 (SLT-A65V) camera fitted with a Sony SAL18135 18-135mm lens, in (automatically selected) Macro mode, usually with the focal length set to between 70mm and 100mm. Not a costly set-up, but it has paid for itself many times over in the last few years, because while I'm no good at taking 'romantic' portraits of my fiancée, the equipment flatters my ability to photograph product defects and other things of concern (e.g. spots in the skin that may suggest melanoma). I've had many undeserved compliments for my photography thanks to the camera and lens, but the amount of refunds I managed to get very uncompromising portraiture of manufacturing faults, etc. are in thousands of dollars over the years I've had the camera equipment. Being an online purchaser of consumer goods, especially one geographically far removed from the main supply channels in the UK, Japan, China and the US, taking unflattering photos of things that went wrong goes a long way to help securing refunds.
A discussion about objects, techniques and applications should not be a contest of personal values. Your values mean nothing to me and require naught from me, and I'll gladly assume my values equally mean nothing to you and do not impose on you in any way; my dissenting views do not oppress your personal views, when neither of us can claim to represent the majority position or consensus, or speak on behalf of the community of fountain pen hobbyists worldwide. Let's treat each other with due respect prescribed by some entity bigger than either of us without our input and just offer our sentimental opinions of no particular standing with anyone else, without trying to control the narrative, or demand moral support and/or solidarity from others as consumers and users.

#99 BaronWulfraed

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Posted 24 January 2019 - 21:55

 

Sorry for the thread tangent... Dill, what comparator do you use?  I've seen you post many photos through that and it seems good.  What do you have, and would you recommend it?  Also, how do you photograph through it?

 

Jumping in... Properly focused for visual use, the /output/ of the comparator should be "infinity". Therefore any camera set for infinity should work for "afocal" photography. This was done with a cellphone camera: Tale-of-2-Nibs.jpg

 

That was an old Edmund Optics 6X Junior. No longer on their web site. The slightly larger 6X Pocket is still available, though the navigation to find the desired reticle is a pain. They aren't cheap either. (Hmmm, one of the reticles for my 6X Pocket has "www.maxlevy.com" on it... https://www.maxlevy....y/reticles.html (the Junior uses 21mm, Pocket uses 27mm)



#100 Misfit

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 09:38

Hi Liz. I expect I’ll watch your reviews even though I’m not an EF fan. I’ve seen enough of your posts to appreciate your opinions and ideas.

I think most of us seek out more than a single review of a pen or ink. No need to be everything for everyone.
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