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  1. The Atlanta Pen Show is this weekend and it looks like after 4 years of collecting Fountain Pens I will finally attend my first Pen Show. Since Atlanta is the closest one, I believe it will be a good one to start with. I am not sure that the DC Super Show would be a great choice as my first show as I am sure a large show like that, would be even more overwhelming. Perhaps it will be best to wade into the show arena slowly. Although I am new to the Pen Shows, I am no stranger to collector shows. I have been collecting World War II Militaria since 1994 and have attended over 100 shows from the smaller ones with 200 tables to the O.V.M.S. International Show of Shows with over 1,600 tables and vendors, collectors, and veterans from all over the globe attending. I have read all of Richard Binders articles on attending your first show and found them to be very helpful. I feel somewhat prepared but I have discovered that Pen Shows are somewhat different than Militaria Shows so I do have a question or two that I cant seem to find an answer for. 1.) Do vendors and collectors trade on items? I have read or have heard in pod casts that vendors trade among themselves but I have not found where they mention trading with the public or collectors. For example: As a collector I may have a late 1800 / early 1900 Watermans reddish brown ripple/wood grain eyedropper in excellent condition but would rather have a Pelikan 100 tortoise shell. Is it common for a collector to offer a dealer with the Pelikan a trade deal or is that frowned upon in the Pen World? The same with parts. If I have 2 Sheaffer balance striped pens that are in solid condition, great nibs but missing a cap would a dealer be inclined to take them in as trade on an early Parker 51 cap? I asked because in my short time of collecting, I consider myself lucky on finding pens and have accumulated nearly 300 vintage pens in various makes, values and periods and it is time to get more focused. In the Militaria world, the vendor/collector trade is usually where some of the best deals are for both vendor and collector alike. 2.) I will be staying at the hotel to support it and the show but would like to carry a small messenger style bag to carry some of the pens I may want to have repaired, some pens I may want to ask someone with more experience in collecting than me questions about, and if trades happen perhaps some that I would want to use as trade value. And of course add new pens to. In photos on line, I do not see anyone carrying bags. Is it allowed or considered a security risk? 3.) I plan to leave Knoxville Friday morning and arrive in ATL around 11:00am. It appears the show opens to the public at 12:00PM. I plan to attend the show again Saturday morning then return home Saturday evening. By doing that, will I really miss anything big that happens on Sunday (except the drawing)? That is all I can think of at the moment. I look forward to attending. I found over the years in the Militaria Collecting that after a while, it becomes just as much about the friends you have made along the way as it does the item you bring back home in your bag. I am a bit on the introvert side but look forward to meeting new folks with the same interest in pens. Thank you for your time & sorry if it was too long winded. :^)
  2. jaelkthompson

    She Finally Says, "hello"

    Hello, Everyone! I am about a year into my fountain pen habit, and while I've used The Fountain Pen Network extensively for research, I've only recently signed up for a user account, and I've never posted. Today, the silence comes to an end!!!!! About a year ago, I purchased my first fountain pen, a Pilot Metropolitan, and it has been all downhill, on a trail of Sargasso Sea blue, from there. I am in LOVE with collecting fountain pens and discovering which brands and designs pique my interest most. Until today, I've been all about Pilots (and my EDC which is a TWSBI Mini), and thanks to eBay's notable seller, speerbob, (who is the most AWESOME person that I've purchased anything from btw), I have been gradually feeding my addiction by amassing a small collection of Japanese and Korean Pilots, circa 1970-1990 (can that be considered "vintage"?). Nevertheless, thanks to The Atlanta Pen Show today and a wonderful experience that I had meeting an FPN moderator, who has a treasure trove of pen knowledge, a new obsession begins!!! Enter ESTERBROOK! Today I picked up two TWSBI Mini-sized Esterbrooks, a Copper SJ and a Pearl Gray H (Dollar Pen), and these pens are gorgeous! I love the compact size, the smooth pearl finish and the filing system. The 1555 nib is a dream writer for my F & EF-nib preferred style, though I am not so fond of the 2668 nib which writes rather scratchy. (I am taking a little micro mesh to this nib.) Most of all, I love how easily I can swap the nibs on these pens and the wide range of options available!! Needless to say, I am beaming with delight, and I owe my new analog love interest to an FPN contact! So I am very excited to be a part of this community, and I look forward to meeting more of the FPN family and obsessing with the uber-obsessed! Sincerely, Jael

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