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  1. Greetings All, Pardon the sloppiness (and embarrassing typos everywhere, even the first word ), but I wanted to get out this review as soon as possible because I'm so excited about this pen. I've had a lot of bad luck with Chinese pens (Hero's have been anything but my hero), but so far no Jinhao nib has ever failed me and their quality seems to be getting even better. Here are my comments and some writings samples about the new Jinhao 992. It's currently available in all colors on Ebay and probably places like Aliexpress as well. Writing sample on a cheap little notepad: Final Run-down Pros: - Quality construction - Superb converter that holds a good amount of ink - Toothless smooth nib - Flawless flow - Nib and feed easily removable for thorough cleaning (perfect for using those troublesome yet beautiful Noodler's inks) - Lightweight - Cap posts well (no slipping or popping off) - Screw on cap - Great color selection - The price! Cons: - Unbalanced when posted - Might be too small for larger hands when not posted [Addendum: Some pictures from the seller I bought from...]
  2. This is the third part of a series of reviews I’m doing on Chinese Boss inks. So far I’ve found this brand of ink to be the most prevalent in China, but totally unknown in the West. They are great cheap inks and all are scented as well. Boss Enterprise “Laoban” ink (not to be confused with the Boss line of inks made by Ostrich in Tianjin) is produced in Guiyang by Guizhou Boss Chemical Industry Co., Ltd. More information about the company can be found here [http://www.made-in-china.com/showroom/gzboss/companyinfo/Guizhou-Boss-Enterprise-Guiyang-Boss-Chemical-Industry-Co-Ltd-.html] and their descriptions of their inks here [http://www.made-in-china.com/showroom/gzboss/product-detailsxmJCnEToQlW/China-Handwriting-Ink.html]. Boss inks are available in the following standard colors: 1. Black 2. Carbon Black 3. Blue-Black 4. Blue 5. Red Close up of ink comparisons taken in natural light: Close up comparing Boss Carbon Black and Noodler’s Black (B = Boss, N = Noodler’s): As you can see, it's completely waterproof: Boss Carbon Black is deep, dark and permanent. It also flows well and lays an excellent line. The only drawback to this ink what's typical for carbon pigmented inks: its ability to stain refilled cartridges or converters and potential clogging if left to dry in the pen. This ink requires regular use and cleaning of whatever pen it is in. If you need a decent permanent black and can find this ink for sale, it’s worth your consideration. Boss inks are only 4 RMB (US$0.62) per 52ml bottle in China. Thanks for reading!
  3. Hello again to all my FPN friends, Today the long awaited Penbbs 456 vac-filler arrived in the mail, so I thought I'd give everyone still waiting for theirs on the slow boat from China to see what they have to look forward to. Below are just a few impressions after filling it up and taking it for a test drive. - The pen just exudes quality! The translucent blue material looks thick and sturdy. The pen just feels very solid and sturdily constructed. - The 456 is just a tad longer than the 309, but notably heavier due to the additional metal parts (see comparison photos below). - It posts securely, the most securely of any Penbbs pen I own. - The clip is one of the best I've seen on a Chinese pen. It's just the right amount of springiness and slides very smoothly only whatever it is clipped too. Unlike previous Penbbs models, the end of the clip isn't just folded over metal, but appears to be a separate piece welded on. - The vacuum mechanism worked perfectly on the first try and filled up a little more than half the ink chamber with one pump. I'm so happy to have been able to try this filling system without having to pay $70+ for a TWSBI. I've owned TWSBIs before and I'd say the 456 actually feels more solid. - Although the section threads are metal going against the cap's threaded acrylic, uncapping and capping the pen is very smooth and secure. The metal threads on the section are smooth and I have no problem actually resting my fingers on the threads when writing (something I have to do given the issue below). - The only negative point for me is the balance. The pen is back heavy even when not posted. This probably won't be an issue for people with larger hands. However, with my small hands I must hold the pen on the section threads in order to obtain a comfortable balance for writing. Otherwise the angle of the pen decreases from how I normally write. - As for the nib, it's a super smooth two-tone #6 Penbbs nib. It writes a little on the dry side, but the filling method ensures that there's plenty of ink in the feed to keep it going. The nib has the classic Penbbs slight bend to it which can actually make a little bit of line variation, what I would call "semi-architect." Downstrokes are about 0.5mm while sidestrokes can vary from 0.3 to 0.8 depending on the writing angle. Ink fly increases with pressure, but there's nothing in the way of flex. All in all, I think Penbbs has created their best product yet and can't wait to see what they come up with next! Comparisons (from left to right: Pelikan M215, Lingmo Lorelei, Platinum 3776 Century, Penbbs 308, Penbbs 309, Penbbs 456) Writing (slight line variation between vertical and horizontal strokes)
  4. Hello again to all my FPN friends, After acquiring too many inks and far too many pens, I thought it was time to turn this obsession toward papers in order to round out the experience. I just received a blank notebook in the mail from a Chinese stationary company called Kinbor (www.kinbor.net/). They seem like a Chinese version of Midori and offer very similar products (at much lower prices, of course). Here's an article about the company that has nice photos of their products. I'm thoroughly impressed with the paper in this A5 notebook. Although this paper is 80gsm and quite sturdy, it's also very supple and floppy like Tomoe River paper. The sewn binding is better than most I've seen; the journal will lie open completely flat regardless of what page you open to. The paper texture is much smoother than Midori paper but not slick like Rhodia and Clairfontaine, again reminiscent of Tomoe River. I've only tested a couple inks with really wet pens so far but there has not been any bleed through or even show through, although a little feathering in same cases. It is advertised to be fountain pen friendly (see picture below). These journals are currently offered in A6 and A5 with the options of blank, dot grid, graph, a blank/dot grid/graph combination, 7mm lined, lined with red side rule, thick sketchbook paper, and a calendar/planner combination. They come with either white or brown covers. I'm in no way affiliated with the company, but I thought I'd ask about these journals because this is the first Chinese paper I've ever tried that has actually blown me away. That's saying a lot because I live in China and have tried lots of papers over the past few years, most of them being quite unfriendly to fountain pens and often unbearable toothy as well. I'll try to post a review once I spend more time with this journal and run in through some tests.
  5. Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN. They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. However, within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao. This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ twelfth series. It is named after the city of Hangzhou in eastern China. Hangzhou is famous for its beautiful scenery and is where longjing green tea is grown (a wonderful tea which I highly recommend). This tea is pan-roasted so the color is a little darker than some other green teas. I think the color of this ink is a good representation of the color of the tea leaves, although I don’t know if that’s what the ink makers were going for. What do you think? The color may just be a reference to the city’s natural scenery. The color is slightly darker and greener than the olive Penbbs ink No. 132 that I reviewed previously. This makes it more useful for daily writing. The color is certainly gentle on the eyes. This ink gives some shading on all papers with wider nibs. Its drying time is a little longer than No. 132, but it also feathers a little less. Bleed through was quite bad on Moleskine, but on other papers it was passable with wet nibs and non-existent with the Japanese fine nib. This ink is slightly water resistant as well. The darker green component remains to leave a barely legible line while the rest washes off. The interesting color and shading make this a nice ink, but as with ink No. 132, it feathers and bleeds too much for my taste. Pens used (in order): 1. Pilot 78G Fine 2. Lamy Safari Broad 3. Pilot Plumix Italic 4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex 5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub Swab Paper Towel Drop 80gsm Rhodia 73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown) 70gms Deli Copy Paper Moleskine Water Resistance Mini-comparison (No. 157 is at the bottom) [My apologies that I don’t have any inks close to this color to do an adequate comparison. No. 157 mistakenly appears lighter than No. 132 on this image. ] SDG
  6. truthpil

    Jinhao 991 Review

    Hello again to all my FP-friends, Allow me to introduce to you the Jinhao 992’s oddly named and somewhat homely younger sister—the 991. This pen comes in both an EF (0.38) hooded nib and F open nib version. Since the nib, feed, housing, and converter on the F nib version are identical to that of the 992, it goes without saying that the 991 writes just as well and has the same smooth nib and flawless flow. All I had to do was put ink in the converter (I don’t like sticking my pens in bottles), put the converter back in the pen, and within just a few seconds the pen was writing a juicy medium-side-of-fine line. I can’t speak for the EF version because the black hooded nib was just too ugly to look at. Nib options: (Taobao) Color options: (Taobao) Appearance & Design There is no question as to where the design came from: The appearance is my least favorite part about the 991. Who would want to own a fountain pen that looks just like a disposable roller-ball?? The only saving factor is that it’s a demonstrator (and, of course, a fountain pen). The coffee brown tint on this model gives it an extra bit of class over the dull black Uni-ball. Looks aside, the matte finish on the cap and barrel adds a nice tactile feel. The whole pen is notably thinner than the 992 and almost as long as the X750. If you wanted a significantly thinner and lighter alternative to the X750, then you’ll probably enjoy using the 991. The section is long and slender and will be comfortable no matter where you grasp it. The design is utilitarian and comfortable, even if boring and unoriginal. I could easily write with this pen for hours on end with no fatigue. Construction I was at first concerned about the durability of the 991. The plastic is noticeably thinner and has just a tad more “give” to it than that of the 992. The thickness and strength of the plastic reminded me a lot of a Platinum Preppy (see below). In fact, I’d say the 991 is Jinhao’s answer to the Preppy (and a more cost-effective answer at that). Despite these initial concerns, after much squeezing of both barrel and cap on the 991 and a Preppy, the 991 is clearly more durable. If you like Preppies and use them regularly without cracking the cap or barrel, then you’ll love this pen! I’m just slightly more apprehensive with this pen than with the 992 about throwing it in my bag unprotected, but I don’t think you’ll have to wrap tape around the joints to prevent cracking the way I always have to with my Preppies. Jinhao 992 and 991: Jinhao 991 and Platinum Preppy barrels: And now the million yuan question, “Does it come cracked like the 992?” After examining the whole pen with a loupe for quite some time over two days, I can assure you that at least my specimen has NO CRACKS whatsoever. [What might appear to be cracks in the photos below are injection molding seams and a few scratches in the plastic.] I’ll give you an update after a few weeks of use, but I don’t foresee cracking as a problem. The end of the barrel does have a plug in it, but it is quite different than that of the 992. The plug takes up the whole end of the barrel, as is also the case with the finial on the cap. If you’re one of those brave souls who likes to eyedropperize pens, then this pen is worth your consideration. The seal on the barrel plug is airtight. I also filled the barrel with water and shook it vigorously for a while and there were no leaks. My only hesitation about using this as an eyedropper filler is that the pen is very slender and will probably heat up quickly from hand warmth and start burping, as might occur with a Preppy. Also note that, unlike the 992, this pen does not come with an O-ring, so you’ll have to supply your own and probably apply some silicone grease to the threads just to be safe. One nice point is that the threading is much finer than on the Preppy and thus provides a tighter seal. Weight & Dimensions Numbers mean little to me when I’m thinking about what is comfortable in my hand, so here are some comparison shots with other common pens to give you an idea of the physical dimensions of the 991. From left to right: Jinhao 992, Jinhao 991, Platinum Preppy 02, Jinhao X750, Parker 45, Parker 51, Lamy Safari The 991 is a very light pen. It has no heft at all when unposted and feels back-heavy and unbalanced when posted (at least for my small hands). Concluding Remarks Although the 991 lacks much of the appeal of the 992, it also lacks its problems. I’m not fond of the shape and general appearance of this pen, but it’s a pleasure to write with and extremely comfortable to hold (unposted, in my case). This pen was designed to write and write and write effortlessly, although some may be uncomfortable with the slender body and light weight. Nib options are limited to EF and F, but you can easily remove the nib on the open nib model and put in another. TWSBI ECO nibs fit well and perhaps a standard #5 would work as well. I’ll have to get back to you on that once my JoWo #5 architect grind arrives. I recommend the Jinhao 991 over the Platinum Preppy for the following reasons: (1) its nib is just as smooth as an 05 Preppy; (2) its material is sturdier; (3) it comes with its own converter that holds a lot of ink; (4) it comes in several colors with no painted on branding to remove; (5) it’s about half the price of a Preppy, depending on where you live. This pen is a perfect choice for your “fountain penvangelism” efforts and is just nice to have around for trying funky inks you may be afraid to put in nicer pens. This pen is so affordable that, if you can tolerate its underwhelming physique, it’s worth at least owning a couple.
  7. Greetings All, Winter break is here and as any self-respecting, FP-loving English teacher would do, I’d like to fill my free time by contributing to the FPN community. As has been mentioned in other posts on this board, Penbbs is a group of FP lovers that is like a Chinese version of FPN. Its owner has produced a lot of inks and cranks out as many as 15 new colors each year. Difficulty obtaining these inks in the West means there aren’t many reviews in English. Lgsoltek and visvamitra have gotten the ball rolling by reviewing some of them and I’d like to add some more. Here’s my proposal: Below are color samples of the inks available for the past 5 series of Penbbs inks. Based on all your requests, I’m going to choose between 10 and 20 of them to review. At a mere $0.30-50 per 5ml sample, this should be a lot of fun for little money. To request reviews of any of the colors, just reply to this post with the corresponding numbers of the inks you want reviewed. Thanks for your help!
  8. Does anyone know anything about the Lignan company? I was lucky enough to win a pen by them in a generous PIF, and can't find out anything about the pen. It writes very nicely in an EF nib, but an EF that is broader than most (which surprises me in a pen I believe is Asian). An old thread on the forum said the marque was a sub-marque of the Hero company, but I don't know much about them either! I like knowing a little bit about my pens, so I'd appreciate any information y'all can share. Thanks.
  9. Hello all! So I ran across this pen at Daiso in Korea for 3,000 won. (about $2.50) It looked interesting, and came with cartridges, two nibs (f open & ef covered) and a converter. It looked pretty interesting, like a Lamy Safari knockoff, so I picked it up. The nib seems really nice, but I can't for the life of me figure out what brand it is. The only markings are imprints that say "point&line" on the clip and the nib. I've never heard of a fountain pen brand with that name. I'm not an expert, though, just a casual user. Direct comparison with Lamy Safari. The Safari lid is a lot heavier, and the body of the Daiso pen feels cheaper even though it's the same weight with the cap off. But that's expected, considering. Not pictured, but the converter is almost exactly the same as the Lamy converter. The nib Lines 1 & 3 are the Daiso pen F nib with the native ink cartrige (which I hated) and then with Waterman ink. Line 2 is Preppy w/ cartrige Line 4 is Lamy Safari with Waterman ink in F Line 5 is Hero 170a gold nib in EF This nib is crazy smooth -- smoother than my Lamy or my Preppy. And with a decent ink, it laid down a nice fine line. I really like the pen, considering the price, but I'm really curious as to who made it. Anyone have any ideas?
  10. Hi Everyone, Jinhaos have been the only Chinese pens I've used that have always worked right out of the box and had smooth nibs that are easy to change. The only problem I've had is that the section can leak after a while. I enjoy my X750s and X450, but wanted something a little thinner. I've narrowed it down to these 4 pens and would appreciate your input, especially if you have any of these. I'm asking everyone on here also because I'd like to get a pen to review that FPN folks are most curious about. My priorities are a comfortable section (which is making me lean away from the shorter-sectioned 601) and a smooth-as-possible nib. The weight and measurements are from a Jinhao dealer, but I don't know how accurate they are. They are ordered from least to most expensive (13~32RMB). Thanks for any thoughts and suggestions! Jinhao 911 EF (20g) 14cm(L) [They call this a "financial nib" 0.38 which I think means accountant style.] Jinhao 601 M (40g) 13.2(L) [This is a Parker Sonnet clone like Kaigelu 356] Jinhao 165 M (32g) 13.7cm (L) Jinhao 163 M (40g) 14.2(L)
  11. essayfaire

    Fan Of Pilot Petit

    So I just received a Pilot Petit from Japan and I think it's a wonderful little inexpensive pen. it writes much finer than the Varsity that I tend to use on the go (because I once lost a good pen...). Even though it is short, it fits well in my hand and I think is a great pen to live with a checkbook, wallet, or small purse. No, it doesn't write like my Sailor, but if I lose it I won't be tearing myself up.
  12. Hi, I was hoping some of you will be able to help me. My father had a collection of fountain pens which are now in my possession. His collection includes a few very prestige pens (from what I gather), including a Danitrio. I know nothing about fountain pens, so I need some help identifying the model of this pen (pics attached). I'd like to sell this pen, however knowing nothing about it, this is pretty difficult! I'm looking for the specific name & model, and perhaps even an estimate of how much this pen was purchased for so I can gauge the price I should sell at. Saying that, should anyone be interested in purchasing, do let me know. Many thanks in advance! J
  13. essayfaire

    Ink Color Etiquette

    I was wondering if anyone knew what the correct color ink is to write a thank you to a Japanese family. The note will accompany a small gift. In the States, I'd stick with black, but I'm not sure about Japan. Thank you!
  14. Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN. They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. Within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao. This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ eleventh series. It is named after the Greek island of Santorini. In 2015, this island was named one of the world’s most beautiful islands. The color of this ink is undoubtedly meant to portray the beautiful blue waters of the Aegean Sea which surround the island. I’ve never been there, so I’d love to get an opinion from anyone who has, but I think the color is spot on. This ink is the first I’ve reviewed from Penbbs so far that made me say, “Wow!” after first seeing it on the paper. It’s vibrant, cheery, and should be ranked up there with the best of the bright beachy blues. The closest color I found to it is Montblanc for BMW, but Santorini shades, sheens (!), and has just a tad more “pop” than that much more expensive counterpart. No. 128 has some great writing properties. There is a little feathering and bleed through on copy paper and Moleskine, but it isn’t intolerable. This ink also dries quickly and flows freely. The only thing that keeps me from buying a bottle immediately is that the ink has absolutely ZERO water resistance. As you can see from the soak test below, it completely vanishes into the ether when exposed to more than a few drops of water. Other than that one disappointment (which may be a non-issue for others), this is a great ink with amazing color. It behaves well, looks fabulous, and is a joy to write with. Pens used (in order): 1. Pilot 78G Fine 2. Lamy Safari Broad 3. Pilot Plumix Italic 4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex 5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub Swab Paper Towel Drop 80gsm Rhodia 73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown) 70gms Deli Copy Paper Moleskine Water Resistance Comparison* *Special thanks to FPN member lapis for the samples of Montblanc for BMW and Sailor Yama-dori used in this comparison. Check out this sheen! Here is Penbbs’ image of the bottle and label for reference: SDG
  15. Penbbs No.152 Mix Set Violet Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN. They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. Within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao. This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ twelfth series. It is one of seven “Mix Set” inks in this series that are designed to “mix to create miracle.” The color is true to its name, giving a nice deep violet. This ink is rich and deeply saturated with virtually no shading. It’s a beautiful vibrant hue that I enjoy seeing on the page. Judging purely from scans in other reviews, I have a feeling that Penbbs No. 152 may be a good contender for a Lamy Dark Lilac substitute. [bTW, If anyone is interested in selling me their bottle of that precious elixir please let me know!! :puddle: ] It also seems to be darker and more saturated than Pelikan 4001 Violet, but I don’t have any on hand to compare. No. 152 also has some great writing properties. There is a little feathering and bleed through on copy paper and Moleskine, but it isn’t significant. This ink also dries quickly and has good water resistance. When exposed to water the red component will lift, but the remaining dark purple line is still very legible. This is the first of the Penbbs inks I’ve reviewed so far that has actually impressed me. It’s a nice color that behaves well and is a joy to write with. If you like purples/violets and are able to get a bottle of this, you won’t be disappointed! Pens used (in order): 1. Pilot 78G Fine 2. Lamy Safari Broad 3. Pilot Plumix Italic 4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex 5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub Swab Paper Towel Drop 80gsm Rhodia 73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown) 70gms Deli Copy Paper Moleskine Water Resistance Comparison Here is Penbbs’ image of the bottle and label for reference: SDG
  16. Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN. They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. Within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao. This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ eighth series. It is named after Chinese architect Lin Huiyin (known as Phyllis Lin in the West). She is famous in China for being the first female architect in modern China and for her involvement in designing the flag and national emblem of the People’s Republic of China. You can read more about her here. I love my purples, and this one doesn’t disappoint. No. 95 is a deep purple very similar in color to Noodler’s La Reine Mauve but much better behaved. To my eye it looks like a pure purple, leaning neither red nor blue. It is quite saturated but does shade a tad with wet nibs on non-absorbent paper. This ink dries quickly, but also displays some feathering and bleed through. However, it doesn’t feather or bleed nearly as much as the other two Penbbs inks I’ve reviewed (Nos. 132 and 157). Also unlike those inks it has passable water resistance. Penbbs No. 95 could be someone’s perfect dark purple for daily use with a fine nib on regular paper. My conclusion is that this is a decent ink I can live without and we could all use a little more Waterman Tender Purple in our lives. Pens used (in order): 1. Pilot 78G Fine 2. Lamy Safari Broad 3. Pilot Plumix Italic 4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex 5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub Swab Paper Towel Drop 80gsm Rhodia 73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown) 70gms Deli Copy Paper Moleskine Water Resistance Comparison Because I ordered so many samples, the Taobao seller kindly gave me a free empty ink bottle that just happened to be for this ink. Chinese inks bottles are usually quite ugly and impractical, but this one is neither. The octagonal shape and decent-sized opening allow for you to trap the last drop of ink in a corner to suck up with a pipette. The full color label is also a nice change from the typical boring design. You can tell these inks were made by and for fountain pen enthusiasts.
  17. Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN. They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. Within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao. This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ tenth series. It is named after the cornflower (centaurea cyanus) which can be various shades of blue or lavender. Personally, I think this ink is too dark and too purple to match the flower, but it’s a nice purple nonetheless. No. 116 is noticeably bluer than No. 95. It is very saturated (more so in person than in the photos) and has virtually no shading. This ink dries quickly and only shows a little feathering and bleed through with wet nibs. There is slight water resistance as well; the blue and purple components separate and leave a feint line. This is the best performing ink of the four Penbbs inks I’ve reviewed and is the only one I’d be comfortable using regularly on average paper. Penbbs No. 116 is a nice, vibrant blue-leaning purple that behaves itself, but doesn’t stand out as particularly interesting or exciting to me. Pens used (in order): 1. Pilot 78G Fine 2. Lamy Safari Broad 3. Pilot Plumix Italic 4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex 5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub Swab Paper Towel Drop 80gsm Rhodia 73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown) 70gms Deli Copy Paper Moleskine Water Resistance Comparison Note: The comparison shows the ink's color more accurately than the other photos. It really is this dark. Here is Penbbs’ image of the bottle and label for reference: SDG
  18. truthpil

    Kaco Sepia Informal Ink Review

    Here's a brief review of an ink from another Chinese manufacturer. Their inks are some of the most expensive Chinese-made inks in China, but this one is too dry for most of my pens. Please pardon any grammar mistakes or nonsensical remarks. I wrote this all at once without stopping to think. SDG
  19. truthpil

    Penbbs No. 132 Avg Ink Review

    Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN. They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. However, within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao. This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ eleventh series. It is named after the group of American pilots who volunteered to help the Chinese Air Force fight the Japanese before the US officially entered World War II. The First AVG is popularly known as the "Flying Tigers” and Nathan Tardif pays homage to them in the artwork on the Noodler’s Ink Air Corps Blue Black bottles. You can read more about this group here. I’m a big fan of warm, brown-leaning sepias and all kinds of greens, but I never thought a color like this would catch my eye. Judging by the military-themed name, my guess is that the ink is supposed to be a military “olive drab” color. However, it’s quite light to my eyes so I like to think of it as “greepia”. This ink gives some shading on all papers with any nib. I really like the look and the quick drying time, but there are some problems with the ink’s behavior that keep me from buying a bottle. It bleeds through and feathers on anything other than expensive paper, severely limiting its use. It also has no water resistance whatsoever. All in all, I like this color and its nice shading, but its poor performance on regular paper makes it a no go for me. Pens used (in order): 1. Pilot 78G Fine 2. Lamy Safari Broad 3. Pilot Plumix Italic 4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex 5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub Swab Paper Towel Drop 80gsm Rhodia 73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown) 70gms Deli Copy Paper Moleskine Water Resistance (Water drops and finger smear 30 minutes after writing) Mini-comparison (My apologies that I don’t have any inks close to this color to do an adequate comparison. The colors in this photo also don’t seem to be looking right on my monitor.) SDG
  20. I think that romantic idea of a high value product being manufactured in a company factory with old tradition and great manufacturing and then sold by the same company no longer holds water. Companies are just Brands nowadays. Pelikan is printing Made in Germany on their products to get better added value. In fact, Pelikan is achieving 60% profit margin thanks to high brand value. But in reality it is a Malaysian owned company and CEO Loo Hooi Keat said that "it is impossible for it to completely get rid of its manufacturing arm as this is needed for its high-end product offerings." But as the company progresses, he says it plans a product output ratio of 30% manufactured and 70% sourced instead of the other way around. So you may be paying the company a profit margin of 60% because you buy into story of "timeless German heritage" as they say on their corporate profile, but would you pay that profit margin knowing 70% of the product may be sourced from a sweatshop? Should Pelikan be considered a Malaysian, and not German company?
  21. This is the second part of a series of reviews I’m doing on Chinese Boss inks. So far I’ve found this brand to be the most prevalent in China, but unknown in the West. They are great cheap inks and scented as well. Boss Enterprise “Laoban” ink (not to be confused with the Boss line of inks made by Ostrich in Tianjin) is produced in Guiyang by Guizhou Boss Chemical Industry Co., Ltd. More information about the company can be found here and their descriptions of their inks here. The scan of my review doesn’t capture the color properly, so I’ve also included some photos taken in natural light. Close up of ink comparisons taken in natural light: A writing sample comparing Boss Red and Platinum Pigment Rose Red (I didn’t have the Platinum ink when I wrote the review): Close ups comparing Boss Red and Platinum Pigment Rose Red (Boss on top and Platinum on bottom): Boss Red has a pinkish hue similar to Hero 201, but is more saturated than the Hero ink and Platinum Pigment Rose Red. Like Hero 201, it flees at the sight of water. It is very easy on the eyes and some might consider it less “offensive” than a screaming bright red for grading. I like it for quick editing of documents that will soon be thrown away because it is not only cheap, but behaves well, dries quickly, and stands out on the page more than Hero ink. If you need a decent non-permanent soft red and can find this ink for sale, it’s worth your consideration. Boss inks are only 4 RMB (US$0.62) per 52ml bottle in China. Thanks for reading!
  22. I want to alert the community about a group of fountain pens that was recently stolen from my house in the San Francisco Bay Area (Peninsula). If you see any of them offered for sale (especially as a group), please let me know and I will alert the local authorities. This is a partial list of what was taken: Pelikan M805 (black w/silver trim) F custom 14K nib Pelikan M800 green with silver gold plated guilloche cap M nib Aurora Asia Limited edition M nib ST Dupont Orpheo, lacquer body, platinum plated cap, M nib Pilot (Namiki) Custom 823 Smoke demonstrator M nib Sailor 1911 Sterling, M 24K nib Thanks! Alex
  23. Dear All I purchased a pen long time back on insistence of my wife, yeah there are certain things in life you cant say no to. The pen is Golden Dragon - "Jinhao 1200". I am actually very happy with the pen that i bought for Rs. 350 ( US $6) only thing that sometimes bothers me is the color but yeah it actually wants attention from people some positive some negative. But if you talk about the pen writing experience its a killer. Following is my handwritten review along with some images. The coverter supplied with the pen hold okay amount of ink not great but acceptable. Following are the images: Capped Pen with Clear Branding of Jinhao 1200 at the bottom of cap Dragon clip on the pen had two red small fake stones in the eyes of dragon which have come out after prolong use or maybe not glued properly. top of cap has nice logo or design two tone 18kgp nib writes excellent medium The bottom line is the pen for the price is a superb writer.
  24. Hey guys, Do any of you know any fountain pen-friendly paper similar to Clairefontaine that is easily obtainable in Malaysia? Paper will mainly be used as letter paper for mail so a notepad with perforations would be best. Thanks in advance!
  25. Hey guys, Do any of you know any fountain pen-friendly paper similar to Clairefontaine that is easily obtainable in Malaysia? Paper will mainly be used as letter paper for mail so a notepad with perforations would be best. Thanks in advance!





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