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  1. Please help me identify this Waterman's Ideal. The silver hallmark carries the alphabets F.DW and a P other than the image symbols. And what is the stone on the top of the cap? ]
  2. Hello, just sharing a little trick I just used to effectively clean stained silicone grease from the threads of my demonstrator eyedropper pen. I have a Franklin-Christoph Stabilis 65, which is clear acrylic throughout.. except for the threads, which were a beautiful shade of Tsuki-yo blue! Cleaning these of silicone grease was really difficult - an old toothbrush couldn't access them very well, whilst a soggy cotton bud just smeared it all around. Then inspiration struck! (or perhaps it was wind..) Anyway, I rummaged around in my bathroom drawers for an old mascara tube, and scrubbed the wand under running water until perfectly clean. The soft wand bristles are firm enough to poke into the threads but not stiff enough to scratch, and they did a marvellous job of clearing all the old silicone out in just a minute or two! Hey presto: clean demonstrator. *beams smugly*
  3. Dear FPN'ers, We are introducing our RANGA Acrylic Model 4CS Pens in 20 Beautiful colours. These are Eyedropper Pens. These pens are completely handmade and Visual mesmerizers. Please see our handmade Pen making Video Which is very unique in the world and needs Extensive skills https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08pUuLREZR4&feature=youtu.be (Thanks to Hari) The length of the capped pen is 5.75 inches. The thickness is 13.5mm Dia app. Flat shape (Both ends), Rounded shapes(Both ends) are available. Nib: Wality Fine nib. Medium nib is also available. 35mm White Bock Broad or Medium nib is also available at 9$ extra Feeder: Ebonite Clip: Both Thin clip and Broad clips are available in Gold colour and White colour. Clipless Option is also available. The colours are 1. Grey/ White 2. Purple/Pink/Dark blue 3. Yellow/ Orange /Dark Green 4. Purple with Black 5. Bright Green With Thin Green Swirl 6. Orange With Black Swirl 7. White with Black 8. Pink With Black Swirl 9. Sea Blue With Red 10. Red with Black Swirl 11. Orange With Dark Blue 12. Blue with Black Swirl 13. Yellow with Dark Green/Red/Black 14. Pink With Dark Blue 15. Yellow with Dark Green 16. Purple with Dark Blue 17. Light Green with Blue Swirl 18. Orange With Blackish Green 19. Bright Green with Green Swirl 20. Pink/Green/Black Price: 40$ Shipping: Free worldwide Registered Post shipping Payment can be done to my paypal id mpkandan@gmail.com http://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04750-1_zps0i2di68w.jpg http://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04675-1_zpsjpgvehqv.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04714-1_zpszfqpp6nq.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04672-1_zpsaitglvsv.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04676-1_zpshq567geg.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04713-1_zpss4kmqc1r.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04716-1_zpsffb8mf31.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04726-1_zpsjpa2imaq.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04728-1_zps7t8axosm.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04722-1_zpssusq85z1.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04688-1_zpss0n0tk05.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04678-1_zpsjfnrxwe6.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04700-1_zpso2g8wwhd.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04697-1_zpskedbs25c.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04695-1_zpswkiiby0c.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04691-1_zpsopgvliv7.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04706-1_zpsto03rjxz.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04703-1_zps9gbisnao.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04710-1_zpsp7du5rp9.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04701-1_zpshx2gtrmp.jpg http://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04734-1_zpswalmke41.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04737-1_zpsyta9qnr6.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04738-1_zpsfxis0uj2.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04740-1_zpsqt4mhmxs.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04729-1_zpsk8jd3nri.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04698-1_zpsw4ecmpww.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04742-1_zpsowrpaane.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04741-1_zpsybkmdyti.jpghttp://i1189.photobucket.com/albums/z437/mpkandan/CRod%20Ebonite%20Gajendra/C%20Rod%20Acrylic%20Model%204CS/DSC04744-1_zps5caksjwo.jpgThanks for viewing and support Regards, Kandan.M.P Ranga Pen Company
  4. Hello folks. I am new to this site and wanted to post a review of a couple of Franklin-Christoph pens that I purchased just because I think F-C is so blooming fantastic. To avoid boring everyone to death, I’ll do separate posts for the different pens. This post is going to be about the Pocket 40. First off, I had to use fountain pens in high school, so I knew the very basics, but not much more. I purchased my first post-high school fountain pen, a Sheaffer Prelude in shimmery pink for around $60. I rarely used it because it was very heavy (IMHO), the cap kept falling off and it felt too short and unbalanced if unposted. Ridiculously, I waited ten years before looking for a replacement. I purchased two Lamy Al-Stars on Amazon. Although the nibs were good, I got cramp from squeezing the triangulated grip section. So I researched online about pens made in the U.S. Many thanks to this site, Gourmet Pens, Penaddict, The Pen Habit and Gentleman Stationer for putting F-C on my radar (links at bottom). I drooled (rather obsessively) over the F-C site before ordering two Pocket 40s, one with a Masuyama medium cursive italic nib and the other with a 1.1 cursive nib. I have no photographs because I eventually swapped them out for Stabilis 65s. Here is the link to see what they look like: http://www.franklin-christoph.com/pocket-40.html The P40 colours were Emerald and Cinamaroon. I purchased the ice versions because I knew I wanted to convert them to eyedroppers (much easier than one imagines and really the whole point of buying any of the ice pens). Even with ordinary Parker Red swirling about inside, the Cinamaroon was simply lovely to look at. The pens are light, which I like, and I never had a problem with ink leaking after using the silicone grease. The nibs were both lovely, although I realize that my handwriting is probably too small to suit a cursive italic for writing at speed. The P40 is, obviously, very easy to carry in the pocket, so if you are looking for a genuine pocket pen, it completely meets expectations. I have nothing bad to say about the P40s from F-C. So why did I swap them for the F-C Stabilis 65? Purely because I realized that I rarely needed to be able to carry a pen in my pocket for my work and so I probably should have chosen a larger pen in the first place. (I have petite hands and initially thought the non-pocket F-C pens might be too large.) The Stabilis 65, which I will review separately, was simply better suited for writing done other than on the hop. Another reason I love F-C, even after only a short period of engaging with them, is that they do not carry too many designs as to be overwhelmed by where to start. Also, their designs are timeless and gender-neutral. Sounds silly perhaps, but the vast majority of the “classic” pens in the >$120 - < $600 range that I saw online are either very masculine or the other extreme. Maybe I'm just not good at searching and no offense intended to anyone, just my personal perception and experience. Lastly on this topic, the service at F-C is nothing short of outstanding. That alone is a reason to choose F-C over another brand, all other things being equal. I wish every company had this level of service. Scott and Jim bent over backwards to help me when I wanted to swap out pens. They answered the ‘phone and emails themselves and you genuinely feel like they value your custom. Jim sent me a tub of silicone grease with the second order without me even asking for it. Unless there is some major service (bleep)-up in the future with F-C in, which I cannot imagine would ever happen, they have a customer for life in me. FYI, I did not receive any compensation from F-C for this review, just saying my piece! Sorry for the long and winding road and hope this has helped someone! http://www.gourmetpens.com/2014/07/review-franklin-christoph-model-40p.html#.VjYI_-gqPGD http://www.penaddict.com/blog/2015/5/29/franklin-christoph-model-65-stabilis-review?rq=franklin http://penhabit.com/2014/08/14/pen-review-franklin-christoph-02-intrinsic/ http://www.gentlemanstationer.com/blog/2015/5/30/franklin-christoph-eydropper-mania
  5. The Eboya arrived today! Here's some quick pictures; I'll do a full review after a few weeks of use. Eboya Kyouka with some popular pens http://i.imgur.com/4snnu6i.jpg Eboya medium-size nib and Lamy Safari nib http://i.imgur.com/xbMFKnB.jpg Eboya logo machine engraved into the barrel http://i.imgur.com/cdxEGwJ.jpg Eboya ebonite feed, which I assume is made in-house. It looks really cool! http://i.imgur.com/GbeW1qE.jpg Eboya nib/section and ink-stop mechanism. http://i.imgur.com/St1cu50.jpg I've filled it up with Sailor Miruai. It takes over 3ml of ink. Nibs.com lists 4ml as being the capacity, which is probably right. I didn't fill it all the way. I ordered it with a medium nib, and asked Mottishaw to tune it for generous ink flow. It's very smooth! Really light pen, too, and comfortable in the hand. For those looking for a Japanese eyedropper that isn't the size of a Mikado/Genkai or Namiki Emperor, I think Eboya is a great option.
  6. http://asapens.in/eshop/image/cache/data/Athlete/Athlete-20-500x500.jpgASA Athlete: The pen with a character This review is my first and is intended for a laymen. There is usually no best. No best book, no best car and no best movie. Same goes with fountain pens. However, recently I found or discovered a pen which comes very near to being the best in my present collection. This pen was bought from ASApens.in and was named Athlete. I quite enjoyed writing with it. I call it the pen with a character . As you can perhaps see, the pen is made of ebonite i.e.a hard rubber but feels and looks like wood. How many of us can boast of using an writing instrument made of ebonite. Not many, I guess. Believe me when I say it, the feel of ebonite surpasses plastic, acrylic or even metal. You won't feel the weight. You will not experience the pressure and pain on the tips of your finger while writing for long hours. Your hands will not sweat as much. Moreover, the balance of the pen is very significant when it comes to writing for long durations. This pen has perfect balance. at least for me, posted(putting the cap on the end) or unposted. Despite being of such a large size, I never felt its size or weight even once. Pardon the cliche, but the pen is literally light as a feather. The wooden ebonite body has been polished to give it a matt black finish. It adds to the aesthetics of this pen. The pen looks classy and visually appealing. It catches the attention of those around you, provided they care about pens. The 'Athlete' has got a personality of its own. Its exterior speaks of its being a no nonsense , efficient and durable pen. When you keep it with other pens, it dominates them with its presence. Athlete is an eyedropper. For a layman, this means that its barrel is filled with ink, unlike say Parker vector or Hero 360. Usually in an eyedropper, the air bubble inside gets warmed up with the heat of the body and expands. This results in burping which means that your page can get ruined and you may end up with a big and sizable blot on your paper. But, thankfully, this is not the case with this pen. I ended up a complete tank and I found no burping. The wooden body apparently acts as an insulator much better than plastic. The ink flow increased when the ink levels dropped but there was no burping. Another problems which eyedropper pens face is leakage. None here though. The cap fits securely and the barrel is securely attached to the nib and feed section. It was a new experience for me. An Eyedropper fountain pen that doesn't leak.!!! The best part is nib. These nibs are apparently made in Germany. The engraving says that they are Iridium tipped. You can feel their superior quality. If the best fountain pen you have is a Parker Vector, you would be blown away by the smoothness of the nib. The nib does not have a glossy smooth feel which many a chinese fountain pens have. That is being too smooth to like. There is a little feedback, which I love, because I can feel myself writing and I can feel the nib gliding on the paper. The nib is a dual tone nib. Which means that it has two parts, one golden and another shiny silver colored. The nib is a size #6. For a lay man this can be translated as fairly large nib. Not the largest, but quite large. Having a large nib means that if you have large hands like mine and many of other adult men, you wont be forced to write too close to paper and while writing you can maintain a comfortable hand stance.I got the nib with tines separated. I thought that it would be an issue. But it was not. There was no rail roading. Writing samples of the pen and the comparison with Pilot 'Tank', Pilot MR and Lamy are included. The ink used is commonly available Chelpark and the paper is a JK A4 size paper. The service was excellent. When I bought the pen I used the option of getting the fountain pen checked which is not available on any other indian site. The sellers are professionals. One can any time mail them or call them in respect of any queries related to fountain pens. I called them and they didn't disappoint me. Now, let me answer the most difficult question about this pen. What I didn't like about it? Well, I liked everything. But I should add a caveat that this is an eyedropper pen which needs a little maintenance just like a samurai sword does . And the cap if left posted may leave a round mark on the matt finish. However, the pen is available in many colors on ASApens. Lastly if you feel the ink flow increasing it would be wiser to refill the barrel pen instead of waiting for the ink to be over. Overall, I recommend this pen. It's a great value for money and a daily writer. One can use it daily without impunity. One can show it off or keep it entirely to himself. It is a work horse, a no nonsense pen and most importantly a pen with a character. It is one macho of a pen, that dominates other pens and the paper.
  7. In a previous thread, the group showed a lot of evidence that my Wirt half overlay might be an Aiken Lambert with a Wirt nib and feed. https://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/topic/294666-early-paul-e-wirt-eyedropper-filler/ I just found a Wirt MHR taper cap eyedropper with Wirt two line imprint on the barrel (too hard for me to get a good pic of the imprint). It has an incorrect nib and feed. So, assuming they are a good fit, might I be better off putting he Wirt nib and feed in the barrel with the Wirt imprint, and leaving the possible Aiken Lambert to be a somewhat no name taper cap half overlay pen?
  8. A Mabie, Todd & Bard with a robust sterling overlay. Wrote out of the box. The nib is an unusual nailish one. The price when new was 30 shilling or a bit more what I see on advertisements. I would date it to 1900 - 1905. The chemistry book is from 1897. It was used by an assayer of the mint in Belgium. Cepasaccus
  9. Hi there! I received a pen today and I need your help identifying it. The nib says GENTLEMAN NO 1 18 CT MADE IN USA the barrel has only THE "GENTLEMAN" FOUNTAIN PEN as the inscription. It is an eyedropper and not a safety pen. Thank you so much.
  10. I got recently an early BHR Aikin-Lambert taper cap eyedropper filler (from the late 1900s) with a gold filled Chased pattern repoussé Half overlay. The fountain pen came in excellent condition, with two elegant initials engraved on the barrel indicia. For the pictures bellow, I used a vintage post envelope illustrated with the drawing of the building from Manhattan where the famous jewellers had their shop in the era.[1] The fountain pen is 141 mm (5 9/16 in) long when capped and 173 mm (6 13/16 in) when posted. It is a slender ED, with a diameter of only 8 mm, and it weighs no more than 8 gr. For sure, it is a delicate pen. The cap is 60 mm long and has four vent holes (two pairs of two antipodal holes). The overlay, like my other Aikin Lambert ED’s, is not marked. There were some jewelers in New York who produced such gold filled Chased pattern repoussé overlay, common in the era.[2] A taper cap ED with an identical pattern and indicia appears also in Baird-North Co. 1909 catalogue[3], a jewelry house moved from Massachusetts to Providence[4], Rhode Island, that produced spare parts for Waterman, Wirt, Conklin and many other pen makers. I would be glad if someone more familiar than me with the history of the fountain pens could offer details about the manufacturer of the overlay. The ED has “an uncommon but characteristically”[5] Aikin-Lambert & Co extra fine #1 nib with a round hole not connected to the slit, medium flex. The feed is a narrow keel-shaped one. Included below is a writing sample (not very calligraphic ) on Rhodia paper (80 g/m2) using Diamine Twilight: For a comparison, the following photo presents three different Aikin Lambert ED’s. From left to right: (1) straight cap ED with silver overlay (c.1895); (2) straight cap ED with gold filled overlay (c.1902); (3) taper cap ED with gold filled overlay (c.1910). All three seem to me being real works of art. [1] http://kamakurapen.com/Manhattan/ManhattanList.html/. [2] I.e. see “George W. Heath & Co.” on David Nishimura’s blog. [3] Available as an extract on the site of Pen Collectors of America here. The pen appears under the number 6723. The document was archived including the names of Wirt and A-L in the title, although I did not succeed in finding which overlays were made for Aikin-Lambert. A similar pattern was produced by Baird-North Co. for Wirt (number 6641) with a slightly different indicia. [4] About Baird-North Co., see Johnny Appleseed, “The Pens of the Baird-North Company” on www.fountainpennetwork.com. The author posted all the catalogues of the company from 1898 to 1933. [5] David Nishimura, www.vintagepens.com, August 1st, 2015.
  11. gerigo

    Ink Flows And Blobs On Paper

    Hey all An eyedropper newbie seeking advice. I recently acquired a very early Waterman eyedropper that drips ink from the nib, so much so that it blobs on paper. What does this mean about the pen? It's not a safety filler so it does not have any seals.
  12. I am not an expert but I like to collect vintage FP's. Only some people has 'the secret' of dating, so as a buyer I always need help. It would be very useful if the more experienced FPN members would render evident some wrong datings that happen to appear even in the case of the more honest sellers on eBay (and not only) This auction for a Wirt eyedropper seems to me curious. The barrel and the cap is of an early Paul E Wirt eyedropper, as for the feed, the vent-hole type was patented in April 1903. The two-line print was used by Wirt from 1889 until 1902. Could be such an ED considered from the 19th century as the seller afirms? I think that the feed is a later replacement, but the seller mentioned nothing
  13. **This is my first pen review! Feedback definitely encouraged, but please be gentle with me, I'm new ** I started using fountain pens a couple of years ago, and since that first Lamy Safari, I've learned a lot about what I like, dislike, want, don't want, prefer to have, and can live without. At first, my pen purchases were somewhat haphazard - "hey, I've heard of Lamy - let's get one of those! Oooh, I'd fancy having a RED pen, better grab that as well" - a problem which I suspect is relatively common to newbies (and even a few oldbies). Lately, however, I've started thinking out my purchases a bit better, and after seeing Stephen Brown's review on YouTube, I became curious about the Kaweco Student. The first thing I noticed is that it seems to be somewhat difficult to find experience with this pen. There's Stephen's review, two that I could dig up here on FPN, and a handful of other mentions out on the web: but broadly speaking, search for it and you come up with a big fat "Did you mean KAWECO SPORT?" No, internet, I did not mean Kaweco Sport. And I'm puzzled by this seeming lack of Students in the wild, because after taking the plunge at my local B&M about a month ago and using the Student heavily since then, I'm here to tell you that I think this pen is absolutely tremendous. I bought it out of curiosity, and it is now my all-around favorite pen that I own. This is not going to be a review packed with fastidious measurements and loupe details. I'm going for a more narrative review based on what I now consider to be adequate real-world experience, trying to give you something beyond a "first impression." So let's dig in! THE BASICS The Student is a mostly acrylic plastic C&C and eyedropper-ready (!) pen which costs between $50 and $60. It is available in four colors: opaque black, white, and red, and translucent blue. I have the blue one, and it can look a bit violet in some light (***ONE NOTE: in the photos here, the pen will mostly look much darker than it actually is, because I have it filled as an eyedropper right now***). The pen is packaged in that nifty, retro Kaweco tin, which is both sturdy and quite handy. A nice touch for the price point. It is supplied with a short cartridge and, depending on where you buy it, usually a converter as well: most online vendors I've looked at include a converter, but the local B&M where I bought mine sold it separately. THE BUILD The pen, as mentioned, is mostly plastic. The screw-on cap and solid barrel are all plastic. The simple but very strong clip is metal, and the hourglass grip section is metal as well ("chromed brass," according to Kaweco). The finial bears a small, metallic three-sectioned Kaweco logo. Just below the finial and on the reverse side from where the clip attaches, the words "Kaweco Student Germany" are etched into the cap. There is a single metal ring around the cap where it screws on to the pen, which bears the words "KAWECO" and "GERMANY" along with a series of dots. That's the extent of the decoration on the pen itself. It has a very streamlined, unobtrusive, classic - almost retro - look that I really enjoy. The stainless steel nib, which I believe is made by Bock, bears some scrollwork along the tines over the words "Germany" on the left tine and "since 1883" on the right, the Kaweco logo below the breather hole, and the nib size below the logo. The logo is also found on the feed, which, as Stephen Brown mentions, is somewhat unusual and a nice touch. The Student takes the standard Kaweco "nib replacement 060." These are the screw-in nib replacement units that include the combined nib and feed assembly housed in a plastic sleeve. In other words, for not too much money, you can have an easily-swapped-out range of nib sizes from EF to double-broad: just unscrew the whole unit and screw the new one in. This is not a very large pen, but it isn't tiny either. The mostly-plastic build means it is pretty lightweight. The cap posts well, not deeply but very securely (though I wouldn't jam it on there too hard since this is a plastic body). I find the pen to be better balanced when it is posted. That metal section is quite heavy and tends to tug the pen forward and down a bit, if that makes sense, so posting provides a bit of counterweight and better overall balance. As for length, the pen fits beautifully into my small-to-medium size hands when posted, but just on the right side of "too short" without posting. I cannot stand using small pens (which is why this model is my first Kaweco rather than one of their more popular smaller builds), and I prefer to post for the most part. The Student hits a definite sweet spot for me as far as size and weight. The overall impression is of solid engineering and very good build quality. The threads for the screw-on grip section and the cap are smooth and secure, the clip is very tight (but well designed to make it easy to slip in and out of a pocket), and all in all the pen feels like a workhorse. In day-to-day use over the past month, I haven't exactly babied it, and it is holding up well. One quibble is that the acrylic picks up scratches rather easily, though that's to be expected in this material. On my blue...I guess I'd call this a semi-demonstrator?...model, the barrel is starting to cloud very slightly in some specific places, particularly a ring around where the cap sits when posted. Then again, since this is a relatively affordable pen and an EDC for me, I think it is holding up fine. It feels like a pen that will be with me for a good long while. Those who like the model but want more durability can step up to the metal Allrounder, with the understanding that you'll lose the possibility for eyedropper filling. THE NIB Kaweco nibs seem to be a little bit hit or miss. Stephen Brown's review mentions that his Student (mirroring his general Kaweco experiences) wrote bone-dry out of the box. Some other Kaweco reviewers have mentioned quite a variety of first impressions with their Kaweco nibs. All I can tell you is this: maybe I was very lucky, but the medium nib on my Student is flawlessly, utterly, abso-freakin-lutely fantastic. It's the best stainless steel nib I have. As far as smoothness, it runs neck and neck with my Faber-Castell e-motion - possibly even edges it out - and, though definitely not a gusher, I'd say it writes about as wet as the e-motion. I would say the line is on the finer side of medium. It has never had a hard start, never skipped, never faltered. It just writes, and writes well. I know that sounds crazy. Really, I do! I promise, though, that I'm not exaggerating. I know that Kaweco is well-liked but not exactly legendary as far as nibs go. I hear ya. I had only reasonable expectations for this pen when I bought it, but wow. It has totally won me over. THE WRITING EXPERIENCE - AND EYEDROPPER CONVERSION! In the beginning, I thought maybe it was the ink. I first inked up with a sample of Noodlers Cactus Fruit Eel, and we know that's an especially smooth, wet, juicy ink. I jotted down a note to a friend on some Clairefontaine Triomphe stationery, and it was like writing on glass with melted butter. Gosh, this thing glides! Obviously that combo of ink and paper was always going to be somewhat glassy, but this nib felt great right away. Once I used up the Cactus Fruit, I decided to try something I've never tried with any of my pens, and use the Student as an eyedropper fill. This was a major reason that I purchased the pen, after Stephen mentioned the potential in his review. One FPN user mentioned that s/he had done it with good results, and I know other Kaweco models have been used as eyedroppers. I was, and remain, slightly concerned about the metal grip section. There is exposed metal where it screws in to the body. Others, though, have said that this isn't a massive problem, and that concerns about corrosion can be mitigated by using a well-behaved ink. Well behaved ink? What else, then, but ol' faithful: Waterman [serenity/Florida/whatever it's called today] blue. Which, incidentally, matches the blue color of the pen itself rather well. I filled it up - OMG so much ink! - and I've hardly been able to set the pen down since. It wasn't just the Cactus Fruit. It wasn't just the Triomphe. This is simply a brilliant, brilliant, brilliant little writer. No matter what I throw at it, the Student cheerfully (this is a cheerful pen) does its thing without question. It behaves well in my sometimes-finicky Leuchtturm pocket journal and skates across Rhodia/Clairefontaine. Best of all, a few days ago I used it to write a six-page letter on some Crane monarch sheets. Holy moley. I just couldn't stop. The way this thing felt on that paper...wow. Fountain pen nirvana. LIVING WITH IT AND FINAL THOUGHTS It didn't take very long for me to fall in love with this pen, and now I always have it on me. I've had zero issues so far with using it as an eyedropper. That speaks well to total fit/finish, but of course I'll be keeping an eye on it longer term to see if the metal of the section starts developing problems later as a result of the eyedropper usage. One gripe I have is with the section. It is very smooth, and while the hourglass shape helps a bit as far as maintaining grip, it can get a bit slippery. And the section might be just a touch too narrow for me for comfort over very long periods of uninterrupted usage. By the end of that monster 6-page letter, my fingers were screaming, but that was also a lot of writing for me in one sitting. When I first got the pen, the section was screwed on very tightly. I mean the thing felt glued. It took a painful amount of force to unscrew the thing, which was not helped by the smoothness of the finish. Now that I'm using it as an eyedropper, this level of fit is something I obviously appreciate, but if you pick one up and find the section is screwed on almost impossibly tight, you aren't the first. I'm not saying this is a bad thing, just something to be aware of. Here's the thing. I would, in a heartbeat, recommend MY Kaweco Student to absolutely anybody. I mean MY champion-class writer, with a nib that just sang right out of the box. There is, however, that nagging sense that I may be really, really lucky. I mentioned, earlier in the review, that some others have had issues with their Kaweco nibs, issues that may go beyond the typical "different strokes for different folks" subjectivity of fountain pen users' opinions and point to some QC problems. Given that, can I recommend the pen on the whole? Absolutely! Though with the obvious and standard caveat that your mileage may vary. That uncertainty alone may be enough to turn some people off, and understandably so. Most of us don't bring unlimited budgets to this hobby, and a $50-60 pen isn't throwaway money like a Preppy. I'd hate to see somebody come in expecting a dream writer like mine and get a bone-dry, scratchy, skippy mess. However, if you want to take the chance, and pull the trigger on a $50 eyedropper-ready workhorse with a nice retro look and largely excellent build quality, you may just end up surprised with what you get. I know I am. **EDITED IMMEDIATELY AFTER POSTING FOR A FEW TYPOS AND GRAMMATICAL ISSUES I NOTICED AS SOON AS IT POSTED. ...NATURALLY**
  14. Another antique! I think that dating the pen is fairly straightforward. On the barrel is stamped Mabie Todd & Co New York, but the section is stamped Swan 4500 M.T.B. This of course would refer to Mabie Todd & Bard which ceased in 1907, so I can reasonably presume that this pen dates from perhaps 1908 or thereabouts. Stamped also 4572 this represents a 4500 model with a short medium No 3 nib. The pen incorporates a "plug feed" whereby the pen may be filled without unscrewing the section. There is also a gold overfeed, probably an early example. And the pen does what Mabie Todd claimed: it is always ready to write which it does very nicely! Cob
  15. thatotherguy1

    Thoughts On Gama Raja

    Before I start this review, let me say that I am unable to post pictures, but my Raja looks just the same as the one that ASA sells, so you aren't missing anything super different. Also, I'm no professional reviewer, just a hobbyist. There are relatively few reviews on this pen aside from Hari's excellent posts, so I'm hoping to help someone that is interested in Indian pens, particularly Gamas, decide whether or not to take the plunge (or, given the price, the dip). I have, for full transparency, posted a thread on this pen after a few days of use in the India forum, but I've used this pen extensively since then, so my perspective should be different. I hope you enjoy the review, and I welcome constructive criticism First Impressions I bought this pen from ASA Pens, which is based in Chennai, India. I didn't have any need to e-mail Mr. Subramaniam or anyone else, so I can't comment on that aspect of the customer service, but the buying process was painless and the pen showed up on my doorstep three weeks or so after I ordered it. Considering the shipping was free (and the pen was competitively priced to boot) and it had to literally make its way to the other side of the world- I'm in the U.S.- I consider that pretty good. If I recall correctly, the pen was packaged in a mylar bag (I might be wrong on that) with a LOT of bubble wrap. This thing could probably have been kicked across the room by a professional football kicker with no ill effects, though I wouldn't try it. The pen comes in a velvet pouch with the Gama logo in white ink. Along with my pen, I got a spare Indian single-tone nib and a disposable plastic pipette- nice additions, though I haven't used them. The pen seemed really large to me on first feel- I was used to a Safari- but it seemed well made and very nice. Feel in Hand This pen is large. The section is about 12 mm, the barrel is 13, the cap 14 (all according to the ASA site). It's 14.8cm long (ASA). However, due to the ebonite construction, it is very light and well balanced. The common saying that ebonite feels weightless holds true with this pen. It all but disappears in the hand. While the pen is very light, it is noticeably heavier when you fill it with ink- I'll explain why in a bit. Nib and Feed(s) This pen comes with a two-tone steel Indian made fine nib, which is the rough equivalent of a Western extra-fine in line width. Quality seems to be notoriously inconsistent with these, so keep that in mind when I comment about mine. Mine wrote smoothly enough, provided you were in the very narrow sweet spot. When you got out of that sweet spot, it got pretty scratchy pretty quick. I took a few moments with a fingernail buffer (bought for this purpose, not shared with anyone- that probably wouldn't go over well) and smoothed it out. Now it writes like a dream and the sweet spot issues are alleviated. The steel the nib is made of is very thin, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. In normal writing, it adds a little bit of pleasant springiness to cushion your hand, and it gets interesting when you put some pressure on it. This thing flexes better than the Ahab I tried from a buddy. Mind you, it's NOT a flex nib. It's not marketed as one, nor is it marketed as a semi-flex, so flex at your own risk. BUT... this thing goes from extra fine to a solid medium, maybe even a broad (I usually stick to fines so I have no broad experience) and can resume its extra fine state well enough. I have bent the nib enough that it contacted the inside of the cap, but it was easily fixable and I was pushing the nib farther than I had pushed it before or since. It isn't going to even keep up with your vintage semi-flexes, but there's definitely enough flexibility to add some nice expression to your writing with a little care. I replaced the stock feed with a Sheaffer No Nonsense feed from a Viewpoint. There was nothing wrong with the stock feed- it kept up well and flowed great- I just wanted something to keep my papers clean when the pen got low- the Viewpoint feed can buffer the ink that would have otherwise been burped onto the page quite well. Comfort The pen is superbly balanced and light. With a smooth nib, I've written for long stretches with no issues. If you like larger sections, you won't have an issue. Posting makes the pen back heavy, too long and scratches the barrel. Quality When you think about the quality, keep the price in mind. This isn't a Pelikan. It isn't a Montblanc. It's got nothing on Nakaya. But for a $25 pen, it's really quite impressive. The machining is well done and consistent. The threads, while single start on both the section and for the cap, are well machined, mesh smoothly (with a dab of silicone grease) and are tight. The finish is nicely done. The polished ends and section are nice and shiny. There is one small polished streak where there isn't supposed to be from where the clip ball rubbed during installation and one of the trim rings is a bit wonky. There was a bit of plating wear on the ball of the clip. Other than that, no issues whatsoever. Miscellaneous The ink capacity on this thing is HUGE. I measured about 4 mL last time I checked. I write a LOT and this thing lasts me two and a half weeks consistently between fillings- I do write it dry, however. Don't put an ink that you don't love in this pen. It'll be there a while. That's why there's a noticeable difference in weight between this pen empty and full- there's a ton of ink in there. This pen takes #6 nibs, should you choose to swap the stock one with another from a different maker. The clip is nice and stiff but not too bad- it can still be used easily. I hope you all liked the review. Sorry for the long windedness of it all... hopefully I made up for the lack of pictures Thanks for reading. TL;DR- Great pen for the price. Some quirks and issues, but worth a shot.
  16. 1. Appearance & Design = 7 To me, this pen looks like an homage to the Parker Duofold, but on a minimal scale. Gama did not do straight line knurling on the cap or bands at the tail of the pen, like the Duofolds have. Gama also used a generic big-ball clip, similar to a Pilot clip. It's derivative and economic, but still classic.The material is a beautiful beige/black mottled ebonite, not as glossy as acrylic but very glossy by ebonite standards. The seams between the different pieces are very smooth, although the hardware (clip and cap bands) leave something to be desired.The Gama name is engraved on the side of the barrel. The engraving does not appear to be from a laser, but a machine, and it is subtle but well done.It came with a generic two-tone nib, which I replaced with a Knox two-tone nib and a later overfeed modification. The overfeed detracts from the aesthetic, but I'm leaving it in place because it is practical.I deduct 3 points for the sloppy cap bands and clip attachment. If those could have been symmetrical and flush like the other joints on the pen, I think the appearance would have been a perfect ten.2. Construction & Quality = 8 The execution of the cap bands is sloppy, with one side being too deeply inset, while the other side sticks out quite a bit. The attachment of the clip piece is also asymmetrical. Capacity seems to be a hair over 3mL.With some eyedroppers the section can fit too tightly, but Gama made this pen just right. As a result, I don't have any trouble removing the section to fill the barrel, and there is no danger of leakage.The ebonite is of very good quality, and has held its luster very well over the first month or so of my usage. The gold coloring on the clip will eventually wear off, but it seems to be holding up pretty well for now.Threading seems to be good--only 1 to 1.5 turns to remove the cap. However, I have noticed the cap will go on slightly crooked unless I leave it 1/8 turn looser than its tightest position.I already deducted points for the sloppy cap band and clip attachment. The section shape is comfortable and well proportioned, and the threads do not bother me when gripping the pen.I deduct two points for the crookedness when the cap is closed.3. Weight & Dimensions = 10 I don't have a digital scale, but I'd say the weight/size is comparable to a Ranga Model 3 or a TWSBI Vac 700. It's a large pen with a medium weight--not as nimble as a Parker 45, but there's no filling mechanism so it's fairly light and balanced toward the nib.Dimensions:Length capped: 145 mmLength of cap: 67 mmLength uncapped: 132 mmSection at narrowest: 11 mmSection near barrel: 13 mmBody at widest: 14 mmBalance is very good. This pen could post, but I don't think it's necessary. Unposted, this could be a very good session writer.No points deducted here.4. Nib & Performance = 8 The original nib wasn't bad. It was a generic two-tone steel fine nib with very good flow. It was a little scratchy, but smoothed out with only a couple minutes of tine adjustment and circles on my buff stick. I've become a medium and broad nib convert, so I ordered a Knox B steel nib (size K35, comparable to a #6) from xfountainpens.com (no affiliation) and was able to do a very easy swap because the feed is somewhat loose-fitting in the section. I think this helps the ink flow, but it also means I didn't have to get the hair dryer to get the new nib in place. I was even able to squeeze an overfeed in there with some effort.Flow is 10/10. It's a firehose. I'm using Diamine Ancient Copper in this pen because the saturation looks so good--almost as dark as oxblood red.The Knox nib was very smooth when I received it, but I had some baby bottom issues. I had to press the nib somewhat firmly on the first stroke to get the ink flowing, and had lots of skipping due to the nib (remember, the flow was more than adequate). Baby bottom is hard to fix, but I think I've just about banished it. The Knox B is stubbish and a little springy, making this a very pleasurable session writer.I deduct two points for a scratchy nib out of the box, but I won't deduct any more because the fit of the feed and rate of flow are remarkably good.5. Filling System & Maintenance = 9 There's no better scenario than a generously flowing pen with a generously sized reservoir. This one holds about 3 mL and fills as an eyedropper.I deduct one point for the eyedropper filling because there is no ink window, and it can be a little messy.However, this pen deserves a solid nine because an ED requires almost no maintenance and delivers a lot of ink. I use an ink syringe for better control when filling, and I think I can fill it just as fast as a piston filler.6. Cost & Value = 10 I received this from a friend here on FPN, and "free" is always the best price. I think these go for around $50-70 on eBay. Edit: At about $23 on asapens.in (no affiliation) this is a steal. The equivalent Ranga is closer to $40, but I think the Gama has a nicer finish. This ebonite holds its gloss very well, and it's nice to have some accent hardware (even if they're attached somewhat askew) and a clean engraving of the manufacturer name.The machining is very good. Fit of threads is also better than the Ranga Model 3 pens I've handled, so I think that's worth the extra cost. But, the selling point for me is the flow. Gama's feed manufacture is simple, but well executed. Again, the attachment of the hardware is somewhat sloppy, but it's not a deal breaker, in my view.This is a pen that will hold up well because of negligible maintenance, provides a very good experience for long session writing (size, balance, medium weight, and ebonite material), and can be fitted with any #6 nib to suit your tastes.7. Conclusion = 52/60 Overall, I feel this is a very enjoyable pen to use and I really did not expect it to be such a wet writer. At $70, would I buy this pen? Yes--entirely because of the wet feed. Did I get lucky? I don't know. Maybe other Gama customers will weigh in on how the flow and setup was on their pens. To me, this particular pen is very worthwhile in the sub-$100 category. Edit: Available from asapens.in for $23 under other names. Very good value.I'll bring it with me to the upcoming pen show. If you'd like to test it out, just send me a message or find me in the crowd.If you're looking for a large session writer that won't fatigue your hand, and if you have even a tiny bit of ingenuity when it comes to adjusting or replacing a nib, this is worth a look. The following photos were taken with my iPhone 5c, using HDR mode. For the closeup shots, I affixed a loupe, which gives a slight fisheye effect, but provides the best level of detail. What I received from my friend: Gama two-tone, Ratnamson no. 32, and Oliver 81. A very kind gift. The original nib. Not much to look at, but it was okay. Buddy shot with the Ratnamson no. 32. Note the difference between the two ebonite samples. The Gama is swirled with a rich black, and shows more depth. Learn more about my R32 project, including some discussion of the overfeed modification, here: https://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/index.php/topic/261306-ratnamson-no-32-with-kaweco-sport-nibfeed/ Beautiful material. Another view of the ebonite. Where the threads meet the section. Note how the threads are smoothed toward the body. The section is not concave, that's just an effect of looking through the loupe. Note the size of the step at the end of the grip, which provides a comfortable and secure hold. My overfeed isn't pretty, but it fits very well. You can see how the DAC has oxidized around the overfeed. The nib underneath is quite pretty, with a little lion and everything, so I'm sorry you don't get to see it. Note the chamfer at the opening to the section. This makes it super easy to fit the feed in place. The ebonite feed is handmade, and somewhat crude, but well executed. Here you can see how flush the endpiece was finished. Another view of the endpiece. That tiny gap where you see the glue is impossible for me to feel with my fingernail. I didn't even see it until I looked at the pictures. The Gama name engraved on the barrel. Perhaps carved by a CNC machine? Doesn't look laser-etched. I kind of like it. The ball is formed from folded steel--very shiny. This is the side of the cap bands that is too deeply inset. The other side of the cap, where the bands are not inset deeply enough and do not match each other. Here you can see the side of the clip attachment ring that sticks out from the finial slightly. And here, the side of the clip attachment that is too far in. Other manufacturers create a seat so this isn't visible, but Gama took a shortcut on this part. It ruins an otherwise flawlessly flush finish on the rest of the pen.
  17. I have a Lady sheaffer XI Black/gold Tulle, is it possible to make it into an eyedropper? I also want to know how fragile the gold tulle overlay is, and if mine is in pretty good condition with an xf/xxf nib what is a pen (prefereably with the same Waverley xf/xxf nib or a fine nib with flex) I would be able to trade it for? I don't really care about the cosmetic condition too much, but this will be an EDC pen for jeans or soft pouch so I worry about messing the lady sheaffer up (everything else about the pen is good). Also, I have an inkograph lever-filler that needs some TLC. The j-bar is rusted, but has only surface rust. How should I remove it? The needle writing tip is also slightly bent, not to mention ink has apparently seeped into one end. Where would I even find another part?
  18. shawng

    Ahab Eye Dropper

    I've had a Noodler's ahab for the last couple months, and I've loved every part of it. Converted to an eyedropper the Ahab can hold 6mL of ink!!! and I've tried to do this a couple times, with little success. Every time I think I've successfully done it, to either one of my ahabs, it suffers from severe burping and and leaking from the feed, and often ending up with a cap filled with ink. Is there anyway to alleviate this problem? Thanks
  19. Hello fellow FPNers, So it was a lazy Sunday afternoon and i was in front of my laptop with a cup of freshly brewed coffee. Beside my laptop was lying the Oliver Karma demonstrator. I had bought it quite a while ago and used it quite a lot. As a result. The clear acrylic barrel had developed scratches that scratched the eyes of the viewer. Also, it had not been factory polished from inside the barrel when i had bought it. It had the marks of lathe machine in it. As i sipped my coffee, an idea struck me like a bolt. Perhaps the result of my strong brew! I thought, why not try and give it the "frosted" finish that has recently gained quite some popularity. And off i went to convert my thought into action. Here is the result... The original finish.
  20. Amberjack

    Fp Review: Airmail 58Sl

    Hi folks, This is my first attempt at a pen review, so thanks in advance for your patience as I fine tune how I'll do these in the future. I'm an airmail fan - that is, I enjoy the research and study of the impact of early aviation on the transport and delivery of the mails. So, it seemed a natural that when I learned about the Airmail Pen Company in Mumbai, I take a closer look at their products. Airmail Pen Co. was started in 1951 in (then) Bombay, India. While I have not had the pleasure of visiting the Sub-Continent, I'm told that Airmail Pens are quite popular there. Though they are available in a few locations, I went to Fountain Pen Revolution and quickly found a few attractive models to try. As it happens they were running a 50% off sale (try to get that from the Montblanc dealer in the mall!)...which brings me to the first solid 'Pro' about Airmail pens - the price. The pen I am reviewing here is the 58SL in dark blue and cream swirl and retails every day for USD $15. Yep, fifteen. Count 50% off of that and I paid a grand total of $7.50 for this pen. Shipping was $3, from India to the US. Now to found out what you get for your money... http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e341/Jack_Breeding/Airmail58slD_zpsc97ce672.jpg The pen itself is attractive, made of plastic (acrylic?) with brass or brass plated clip, jewels and jewelers band at the cap base. Time will tell how durable these treatments are but they make a nice first impression. The fit and finish of this and other Airmail pens I have is adequate to very good, certainly above expectations based upon the price. The 58SL is a screw-cap, eyedropper pen and the threads are cut precisely without slop or excess. Being an eyedropper, this pen holds a lot of ink. I measured just over 2.5ml in the thick-walled barrel. There's also a very nice, striped, ink-view window. http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e341/Jack_Breeding/e9728069-c6b3-484f-91fc-7facee570668_zpsaa6b3f33.jpg The pen posts well and balances nicely. It's lightweight, as it has no cartridge, converter, sac or piston but sits well in the hand. This brings me to the nib and feed, the heart of any pen. I ordered a Fine point, but XF, M, B and Fine Stub are also available. http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e341/Jack_Breeding/Airmail58slG_zpsbad845e4.jpg While I wouldn't call this a flex-nib by any stretch, it does have some line variation. The nib provides a little more feedback than I like on Clairfontaine 90g paper but judicious work could smooth that out some. The nib and feed are friction fit, which makes swapping nibs simple. If I can't make this nib perform for me, I can just try another. Here's a quick writing sample. The nib is basically a nail, but applying reasonable force can thicken up the lines a bit. Ink is Parker Quink Blue-Black, my test ink as it's tops for flow and lubrication if a little dull in the color department. http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e341/Jack_Breeding/Airmail58slE_zps0ce0e751.jpg So, to sum up... Pros Price Fit and Finish Execution (machining, tolerances) Price Ink Capacity First Impressions Price General Appearance Cons Smell - funky plastic odor Nib - nothing special but the fact that I can easily swap another nib makes this a moot point for me. Notes No box, the pen comes wrapped in bubble wrap. This is somewhat of a plus for me as I'm not big on boxes but some folks may want one. I've just received this and the other Airmail pens I bought so I'll report back with my impressions after a few weeks of use. So far, this pen has really impressed me - primarily because it was so inexpensive. Put a nice mid-century Schaeffer 14k nib on this pen and you really have a winner and for much, much less than you might spend elsewhere. Jack
  21. I was given a rather lovely Swan pen yesterday, of a sort that (in my limited experience) I haven't seen before. So I would very much like to know more about it. This is a long post, but I'm putting as much detail in as I can to increase the chances that someone will be able to help. I didn't find anything on FPN that might help - but if I've missed something, please just point me in the right direction. It looks like a good quality piece, and there are no leaks or cracks. An overnight soak of the nib revealed lots of gunk, and it needs further cleaning, but it is unblocked enough that water flows through. I guess it's pre-WWII, given that it's an eyedropper. But it has clearly been reasonably well looked after, so I doubt the nib is a replacement. It also seems likely that the box is original to the pen. Pictures follow, but I don't have a good camera with me, so please note the following details (all writing on the pen is in CAPS, and / indicates a new line): * Cap: feels like solid metal, and is gold coloured (rolled gold?), with the Swan logo at the top of the clip. No finial 'jewel'. It's a screw-cap. * Barrel: deep green - can read as black in poor light. No evidence of fading. Smells a bit funny - if I had to guess, I'd say it isn't plastic. Barrel imprint is slightly faded, but still reasonably crisp. It has the Swan logo with "trade mark" written underneath. The imprint says, "'Swan' Safety Pen / Mabie Todd & co. Ltd / Made in England" * Section is black and has an imprint: "Swan" * Nib appears to be fairly rigid - much less flexible than the thin Swan eyedropper (e.g.) and Blackbird lever-filler (e.g.) pens I have (EDIT for clarity. It's not a nail - you can get some line variation out of it, from what I can see when it is filled with water - but it differs markedly in feel from the other Mabie Todd pens I have tried). The nib seems to be a number 1: it is marked, "Swan / 1 / 14ct / Mabie Todd / & Co Ltd * Feed is black, smells a little like the Noodler's pens and is marked "Swan". I haven't yet removed the nib and feed for cleaning. The box is as shown in the first picture - pretty standard. The end of the box is marked "Safety" in black and "Fine" in red. I'm including a picture of a bottom side of the box which quotes postage costs in both then-standard and imperial denominations, in case that helps to date it more exactly. Finally, the pen came with an eyedropper in the box. The rubber feels a little old and slightly inflexible, but it works fine. I don't imagine it is original. Pictures: Entire ensemble Pen: nib, barrel & cap Nib close-up (to the extent that my camera does close-ups) Finallly, instructions on exchanging nibs, including postage prices
  22. I've often been tempted by the Ranga ebonite fountain pens and they have had good reviews, from what I have seen, Most of the ones from sold from India are marketed as eye droppers and seem very good value, whereas most of the ones from the US seem to have converters fitted and are almost three times the price (if not more). I'm not overly keen on eyedroppers because of the risk of 'burp', so if I got a Ranga I would want to put a converter in it. The question is: can I put any standard converter in it or must it be a smitd (or whatever it is!), can I swap out the nibs easily and generally speaking, are they a decent pen?
  23. Today I received my new WoodGlass from Desiderata Pens, which Pierre described on his website as "the first wooden demonstrator pen". I like wood; I like demonstrators. But what I really like about the WoodGlass is that it's an eyedropper filler--the 'tank' goes all the way down into the wooden end of the barrel and holds 2.4 ml of ink. I use my flex pens for drawing, as opposed to writing, and use up ink pretty fast. If you're not familiar with Desiderata pens, the concept is simple: they're fountain pens designed to take super flexible dip pen nibs...that look and work great. The feed is designed to keep up the steady flow of ink needed to produce lines with extreme width variation. Here's a look at my WoodGlass: The design is simple and understated; the barrel isn't really glass, of course, it's acrylic. The walls are thick enough to help insulate the air inside from the heat of your hand, to help guard against the dreaded low-tank ink burp. The crossgrain gives the ends a bit of character. The pen came fitted with the standard chromed Zebra G-NIb, which I'll eventually change out for a titanium one; but I was too impatient for that and wanted to test it out right away. I flushed the nib and feed and greased the section threads as instructed in the included manual, then filled the tank and primed the feed with a De Atramentis Document homemix I dubbed "Blood Oath". I'm happy to report that everything is sealed perfectly, the pen doesn't leak at all; however... ...I've got to clean THIS up before anybody gets the wrong idea. Anyway. I then capped the pen and let it stand nib down long enough for it to, you know...become one with itself, man. After a couple of false starts--and a few shakes from me--it got its groove on, and I took it for a spin. I doodled all over an 11" x 14" sheet of Borden & Riley #234 Paris paper. The lettering is fairly large--much bigger than normal handwriting. I didn't feel I was working particularly slowly, and the ink flow kept up with all but my most extreme flexing, and even then I felt the problem was due to speed more than feed. I did experience some clogging due to the super sharp nib catching paper fibers between the tines, but that will happen with any untipped flex nib. Just pick the hairball out of the nib and you're good to go. Detail of above, showing the scale. If you're familiar with G-nibs, you know how they perform; if not, the widest 'swells' above measure between 2 and 3 mm. The nibs will flex wider than that, after a bit of breaking in, but I don't usually push them that far. And even after all that doodling, I still had 2/3 of a tank left! To sum it up, I feel this is going to be one of my favorite 'workhorse' pens. It does what it's supposed to; it's attractive, the nibs are easily (and inexpensively) replaced, and Pierre is easily approachable if you have any questions or concerns. The only real drawback I can foresee is that the section is a bit slim for my mutant grip--I'm most comfortable with plump pens. But that's not a dealbreaker. I'm looking forward to finding out how the WoodGlass compares to both my vintage flex and custom flex pens.
  24. Hello! First, I'm a noob, so if this has already been addressed at length, and I missed it in my search, I apologize. Now onto my situation....I was given a bottle of 4.5 oz Noodler's HOD for Christmas, and of course this came with a modified eyedropper Platinum Preppy. I was excited to use the pen and bring it to work because everyone says that they really like the pens and they are cheap, so if one walks away from your desk, no biggie. Yesterday, I am writing away, and it begins to leak heavily. Huge drops came from the bottom of the base of the nib where the feed ends. Ink got everywhere. It was a huge mess. I inspected the pen, and it does not appear to be leaking at all from the closure. I checked the O-ring and ensured that the threads were lubed up with silicon grease. I ran water through the nib and feed, dried it, and inspected the parts and put it back together. It has not leaked again...yet. My questions.... (1) Why did this happen? (2) What can I do to prevent this from happening again in the future? (3) Is this a common problem with modified Preppys? If so, I will need to reconsider buying a bunch of these for my desk at work. I work in oncology clinical research, and it would be a disaster of epic proportions if my pen leaked all over a patient's chart or other source documents. I can see the look on the FDA auditors' faces now....YIKES! Any help or advise is greatly appreciated!
  25. I recently received a Pilot 78g from Goodpens here on the forums. I was thinking about converting it to an ED because it is my favorite for all my long writing sessions (Essays and minor research on wearable technology). The squeeze converter doesn't hold enough ink and refilling so often is kind of a pain. I have seen older posts here on FPN and Badger and Blade about it and it seems all you need is a pen body with no holes,an o-ring and silicone grease. I have the first two but have looked at my local hardware stores and I can only find the silicone-based caulk which i know is advised against. Can you use something like a organic beeswax or Chapstick( a wax based lip balm)? I am very new to these things so any advice offered would be appreciated. I look forward to some help and suggestions!

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