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  1. Just finished up with my first three kitless pens. The first was the prototype so it's not worth showing here but the second and third turned out ok, I think. I made my own alumilite blanks and turned them on my smallish Rikon wood lathe using Easy Wood Tools negative rake cutters (they are awesome). I'm using cheap Chinese taps and dies but I did get in on a group buy for some triple start taps and dies from Tapco. Can't wait for them to get here! The nibs are Bock #6 fine. BTW, does anyone have a preference between Jowo and Bock nibs? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
  2. First off, here are some photos: Nib: http://imgur.com/2vPuwy4Writing Sample: http://imgur.com/t7WFQ4XComparison with Sailor B: http://imgur.com/DW2lT1XHello all, I hope you are well during these strange times. Today I have a short review of my impressions of Sailor’s contemporary Naginata Togi Medium nib. I have been using it for the past month or so as a daily writer. Now, Sailor Naginata Togi nibs and I have a long relationship built upon longing and reluctance. I’ve always wanted one, since getting the chance to try one years ago. They write beautifully, but the prices have been getting a little wild over the last few years. Recently I sold off most of the pens I hadn’t been using, trimming my collection down to a pair of Conid AVDA Phis and an old 146 that I use as a ‘can-I-try-your-pen?’ pen. With the Conids, I have a few Sailor nibs I rotate through, and this NM is the most recent addition to their ranks. Now, I got the chance to try one of the modern Naginata Togi nibs while living in Barcelona, but I waited until I returned home to Canada to purchase one as the price was ever so slightly better and I had the opportunity to purchase it from Wonderpens—best stationery shop in Canada folks, full stop. The modern rendition of the grind is spectacular, and a true equal to the originals I‘ve had the pleasure to use. They write wet, really wet, and I would not have the patience to use one in a Sailor body with their tiny converter, so a Conid was a must for me. The feed does a spectacular job at keeping up, aided I am sure by the sheer volume of ink in the Minimalistica’s reservoirs. The nib performs as advertised, though I should note that the line variation has no practical use in regular western cursive scripts. Personally, I use a higher writing angle to make corrections or small notations. The feel of this nib is unlike any other Sailor nib. The sweet spot is massive, the tunes have some play to them affording some pressure-based variation, and the feedback is unique among Sailors. If a Sailor Fine is a sharp HB pencil lead, and a Sailor Broad is a fairly sharp H or F pencil lead, then the Naginata Togi Medium is a well used B or 2B pencil lead. It sings across the paper without ever feeling scratchy. Run the flat of your finger nail across a teak tabletop, that’s what it feels like. Sonorous, soulful, and spirited, this is a generation nib. I don’t truly know what else I can say, about the nib or it’s performance. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask away.
  3. It all started on a very warm summer's day in July of 2016. I was working out of Shanghai at that time, and was going to a mall close by to meet a friend for lunch. It so happened that there was a promotion by Montblanc of their heritage rouge et noir line right on the main atrium on the ground floor of the mall which I completely chanced into. While waiting for my friend, I was browsing around their exhibits and lo and behold, spotted the famous, or rather infamous Axel, Montblanc's resident nib guru. I recognized him by face because Tom K at that time shared his experience getting a bespoke nib. At that time, he was about to finish his one on one sessions which you had to sign up for, and was preparing to head to the airport. I started to just chat with him about various MB nibs and expressed my dream of one day owning their calligraphy nib. He proceeded to invite me to sit down and chat. I started to pull out my notebook and when I showed him some of my writings, he immediately started to show me some of the nibs he could make. Long story short, I ended up with not one, but 2 bespoke nibs that day. One calligraphy nib, and one italic nib. I have seen and tried both the signature nib and calligraphy nib before when Montblanc first rolled out this service. That was at my local boutique in NYC with no guidance from a nib expert about a couple year back. It was super fun to use these nibs, but the bar of entry was high. Not just with the price, but also the process. They had to test you!!! I have always entertained the idea of getting one of these mythical nibs, but the idea of putting a deposit of such a HUGE sum of money sight unseen was not very reassuring. However, this time, with the ability to work with Axel in person, and his guidance, I decided to bite the bullet and commit. I went for the calligraphy nib, and I have to say it was a very good choice. The wait however, was not fun. When I finally got said pens in hand, it's February 2017. The calligraphy nib is nothing short of amazing. There is nothing in my 150+ collection of pens that come even close to it's width and special abilities. The closest I have is the 2.4 Pilot Parallel. It's actually even wider than the 2.4 as Axel called it 3.0 width. Unlike a lot of other very wide fountain pen calligraphy nibs, this nib does not have starting or starvation issues. It writes immediately when you touch the nib to paper. The other very special thing about the nib is it can still work when you lift the nib and write with the corner for thinner flourishes. This unique ability is something other VERY wide fountain pen nibs can't do. That's because this nib has extra channels cut into the corners of the nib that deliver ink to the entire width of the writing surface. Because this is a bespoke nib, I had an option to engrave my name to the nib. I find the idea of a nib with my name so strange because I have always intend to use this pen as a functional tool. I never wanted to get it as a significant occasion pen, which I guess most people do. So I decided to engrave the function purpose of the nib onto the side. Montblanc found this VERY unusual and asked many times whether the words I chose was correct:) I did say I had another nib made. Which was an italic. Perhaps I was caught up in the moment, and thought it might be very special to also get a Montblanc italic nib. On hindsight, it's definitely not as special as this calligraphy nib. In fact other pen makers make italic nibs that are much better without the high price and wait. If I were to do it again, I would only get calligraphy nib. Definitely stratospheric in price, but recommended wholeheartedly!
  4. 1951 Montblanc 3-42 G BB Nib with Parker 51s and Watercolor Pens Enjoying Montblanc Pens — Broad, Oblique, Extra Fine, LE & Bespoke ~ One of the pleasures of visiting a Montblanc boutique anywhere is looking over the range of finely crafted pens on offer. Familiar models gleaming under refined lighting share space with the latest sophisticated designs. If circumstances are favorable, one may walk out the door after a friendly farewell bearing a fresh addition to a carefully chosen collection of writing tools which are jewel-like in their elegance. For most first-time Montblanc fountain pen purchasers the nib they buy will be an excellent M or an F, both of which write exceptionally well for most purposes. That there are other types of nibs is mentioned and on display, but for those beginning their Montblanc fountain pen journey, they often remain a specialty item about which little is known. After discovering or being introduced to Fountain Pen Network's Montblanc Forum, it's readily apparent that there's much to learn about and appreciate concerning fountain pens. Every month threads are added about pen repairs and maintenance, possibly fake pen verification, older model identification, questions about market value, news about upcoming pen releases and recent purchases. All of these together constitute an education in Montblanc pens in particular, as well as in fountain pen use, maintenance and collecting in general. There's a sizable number of Montblanc users who enjoy using pens with nibs which are seldom available in boutiques, although obtainable through Montblanc's ‘six weeks from purchase’ nib exchange program. Those include broader nibs, oblique nibs, extra fine nibs, limited edition nibs and bespoke nibs. Writing with such specialized nibs adds to the joy of handwriting in fine ink on quality paper. After nearly one year of posts in a thread about an OBBB nib, it became clear that the comments, pen and nib photos and handwriting samples had expanded beyond the original subject. Accordingly, this thread is for those interested in displaying, using and sharing their love for Montblanc's specialty pens and nibs, defined however one prefers. Daily life with fountain pens includes a rich dimension of tactility, as pens, nibs, ink and paper have texture, pattern, hues, weight, and refined materials. Whether enjoyed on a quiet work desk, or with a friendly pet, or in a work cubicle, in a diary or even on safari, writing with fountain pens is life-enhancing. May this thread gradually include a range of pen and nib photos, handwriting samples, and heartfelt comments to encourage long-time members and visitors alike to enjoy their pens as often as possible.
  5. Ok... first post, no idea what Im doing. If you dont want to put up with a Newby, stop here. This is probably an age-old post topic, but I didnt see one, so Im starting my own. Anyone willing to tolerate my ramblings and help/weight-in, would be much appreciated. I believe in the awesomeness of handwriting. I developed a love and skill for it when learning mechanical drafting in high school. My mom was a self-taught calligraphist (?) and her dad could fill a piece of blank paper with handwriting that made it look like it was college ruled. Anyway... I love the skill, art and value of it. And I believe your handwriting says something about you. (It crushes me that they barely even teach cursive in school anymore and place almost zero value on handwriting of any kind now that we live in the digital age) Initially, my weapon of choice was a 0.3 Pentel draftsmans mechanical pencil. Not $5, but under $40-50 pretty easily. As for pens, I settled on decent Uni-ball Micro slim black rollerball. Nothing special, but most people saw me as a pen snob for insisting on these. (Id rather stick a ball point in my eye rather than write with one) I knew about Montblanc pens in high school, but only could dream of having one someday. So here I am, 20 years later, ready to buy my first fountain pen. I know nothing about them. But as I mentioned, the idea of a Montblanc has always intrigued me. Im doing well enough that I can probably treat myself to the price of one as an occasion gift (birthday, Christmas, etc), even though 99% of the population would see spending that on a pen to be insane. (And admittedly, I still think its a little silly, but hey - its would be one of a very few endulgences I allow myself) - Side note: how in the world do people come to own 25-50-100 high quality pens?? That sounds like tens of thousands of dollars... I digress. My concern is this. Do I really want to drop $350-1000 on a pen when Ive never even used a fountain pen before? Im terrified that either, A) Ill damage it by not knowing how to use it, Ill drop it or otherwise break it, C) Ill lose it, or D) I just wont like it. So do I buy something else to mitigate the aforementioned risks? I dont want to buy a cheapie and get turned off from getting something better due to its quality. And, if Im going to buy a medium range pen, Id rather just spend a few more bucks and get the real deal. To make matters worse, I lose pens all the time. Granted, maybe I would keep an eye on a $500 pen, but then again, its not like I lose my current $2 rollerballs on purpose. And not using it is not an option. If Im going to buy it, Im going to use it - as much as possible. I guess it gets way more complicated from there - 149? 146? Limited edition? Nib size? (I do believe in one for writing, one for signing, maybe even one for printing, but Im also not ready to buy two or three just yet) And Im enthralled by the concept of Montblancs bespoke nibs. The handwriting analysis and custom nib option sounds too cool. Im also open to a used option, but know nothing about what, where, how or who that process involves. Long story short - any advice on purchase #1? I defer to the community of experts. Thank you.
  6. marie9999

    Hooligan Raging Red

    Hooligan Raging Red Custom Pen January 2017 photo credit: Tim Cullen First Impression Reverie... This is a custom pen designed and created by Tim Cullen of Hooligen Pen Co. I first saw Tim's work on Facebook in the fall of 2015. On December 26, 2015 after much discussion with Tim, I ordered two pens... 1 - Irish Oak Bog 2 - Tuxedo Pen but with Green barrel and possible Jade dome on cap Both pens were to have ruthenium 18 kt nibs. We also discussed timing and Tim estimated that it would be late 2016 or early 2017 before the pens would be ready. photo credit: Tim Cullen - Irish Oak Bog from Tim's gallery of work photo credit: Tim Cullen - Irish Oak Bog from Tim's gallery of work photo credit: Tim Cullen - Tuxedo from Tim's gallery of work photo credit: Tim Cullen - Tuxedo from Tim's gallery of work photo credit: Tim Cullen - Barrel material for my Tuxedo In October 2016, Tim reached out to finalize the design and well one thing lead to another and the two pens morphed into one expensive pen - but is it a BEAUTY! So the final design kept the Irish Oak Bog and flat top cap with lot of Damascus and the barrel became a Damascus ring of steel. So Tim began to create the pen. The cap was just right from the beginning, but the barrel just didn't sing to me. Now don't get me wrong - it was lovely in it's own right and I had decided to take and if it didn't grow on me ask Tim to change. Well Tim wasn't having it and changed the acrylic from the lovely golden brown to the raging red. This persistence on Tim's part is what make him a great artist with a keen focus on the customer. photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan MP part 1 photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR oh yeah! When I saw that red against the Damascus I knew it is a hit!!! Appearance and Design (10/10) It's the custom pen of custom pens. The size is perfect for my big hands - see photo below of comparison to other pens. Construction and Quality (10/10) The fit and finish are perfect. PERIOD. Exactly the same as the Hooligan V. Weight and Dimension (10/10) Tim warned me multiple times, long before construction began that this would be a heavy pen - and I still said go for it. Weight: Whole pen inked: 1.9 oz Barrel inked: 0.9 oz Dimensions: (rough no calipers handy) Length Capped: 6 3/16" (15.5 cm) Length Cap: 2 13/16" (7.1 cm) Length Barrel and Nib: 5 3/8" (13.5 cm) Length Posted: 7 5/16" (18.5 cm) Max Diameter - Top End of Cap: 9/16" (1.5 cm) Min Diameter - Section: 7/16" (1.1 cm) Pen comparison Line-up from left to right: TWSBI 700 Vac, Pelikan M800, Visconti Homo Sapiens Blue Crystal Swirl, Hooligan RR, Holligan V LE#2/20, Lamy Al-Star, Pilot Metropolitan. As you can see the Hooligan RR is slightly smaller than the Hooligan V. The cap will post, but I usually set the cap upright on desk while I write only holding the barrel. I think that it would be an awesome display to post and place on stand! (of course with no ink) Nib and Performance (10/10) 18k ruthenium board nib cut by Mike Masuyama to cursive italic - I use several different nibmeisters and Mike always does outstanding work - he is at the top of the game and if you haven't tried his cursive italic, I highly recommend that you try it - writes very well. Filling System (10/10) Standard converter - works well. Easy to fill / clean / maintain. (So why not a 8 - like I gave the same converter on the Hooligan V? Well I have decided after this week - that my first choice on any pen is going to be converter. I know that a lot of custom pen maker are offering button and piston fills, and I love the capacity of my Conid but I don't mind refilling if it makes maintaining easier. My vintage ONOTO is a top 10 pen in my collection but the cork maintenance is a absolute pain.) Cost and Value (10/10) The pen is the most expensive pen in my collection at $1200. This price includes the ruthenium 18k nib and nib customization by Mike Masuyama. This price also includes a second ruthenium nib that was purchased for the pen that was consumed by this masterpiece. No worries that nib will be used on my next Hooligan. Now $1200 is a lot for a pen - I get it - but this is my perfect pen - Tim built the length and section diameter to my exact specifications so I love to write with it. Overall (10) Now for those of you who are wondering - yes this is the one and only time that I scored any pen a perfect 10. I could gush on and on about how wonder it is - but the engineer in me says hold up - just the high points. So.... - This is the number one pen in my collection. - Damascus steel and Irish Oak Bog play off each other in a way that is contemporary and ancient all at the same time. - The red acrylic just pops - the contrast is stunning. The ruthenium nib look fab and writes like a dream. - Tim is always pushing the edge and his work continues to amaze his collectors. photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR before logo on clip photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR cap Hooligan logo photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR clip Hooligan logo photo credit: Tim Cullen - Hooligan RR
  7. Oruc Gazi Kutluer

    New Pens From Kilk Pen Studio

    Here are a few of recently finished pens in our pen studio.. I hope you like... Plunger mechanism up to 1.7ml of ink. AA Resin and German elforyn. 24k plated rings, clip and plunger rod. JoWo #6 Nib unit. http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb22_zpsk3qucnwf.jpg http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb25_zpsbkxvrjoo.jpg http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb23_zpsfufqnrym.jpg http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb24_zpsn3lhobmt.jpg French vintage celluloid and SEM Ebonite material.. 24k gold plated custom/handmade cap band and clip. JoWo #6 nib. Convertor and cartridge available. http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb12_zpsqsstmd45.jpg http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb13_zps7pk0qeli.jpg French vintage celluloid and SEM Ebonite material.. JoWo #6 nib. Convertor and cartridge available. http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb19_zpsboynzl5g.jpghttp://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb21_zpsbrjgy6h1.jpg http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb20_zpshaenhu3z.jpg Exotic bubinga wood and indian molted ebonite. Brass metal ring and roll stopper. Jowo #6 Nib, eyedropper and cartridge available. Finish on wood is oil finish for aobut 20 coats in a week, then carnouba wax. http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb14_zpsnz6wm9hu.jpg http://i392.photobucket.com/albums/pp3/KilkPens/zb15_zpsv9ism4iv.jpg
  8. Dorcus hopei binodulosus = Japanese Stag Beetle I thought I'd reviewed this ink a long time ago, but I never did. So here it is now. This ink is for lovers of black inks. It is one very seductive bug. In a number of Asian countries these creatures are kept as pets. However they only live for four months as a beetle: their larval stage lasts about a year. This is a black with good shading. On TR is has amazing green sheen, especially when wet. I'm very happy I have a bottle of this. It seems like there could be some water resistance, but as always take care in that regard. The color ink droplet is amazing. Pen: Edison Premiere (M-steel) Papers: MvL=Mohawk via Linen, TR=Tomoe River, Hij=Hammermill 28 lb inkjet, Rhodia=Rhodia 90g ivory. Camera: iPhone 7 The writing sample on MvL is from this article at NCBI. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4022812/ Not really showing the shading... but looks nice anyway. This poem is from the website of the American Poetry Review, you can read the full poem at this link. http://aprweb.org/poems/this-did-not-happen !!!!!

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