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  1. Hello everyone. I am new to this forum and this is my first review of a fountain pen. So, if I inadvertently commit any mistakes, kindly overlook those. Today I am going to review one Indian ebonite fountain pen with a special kind of nib. Many of us have heard about Butterline Stub nibs, but little information is available online, except that Mr. Pendleton Brown grinds those speciality nibs. It is from his site that I came across the definition of Butterline Stub nibs, which he states as “…….a hybrid between a Stub (very smooth with some variation) and a Cursive Italic (maximum line variation with crisper edge).” This pen is from Krishna pens, behind which there is Dr. Sreekumar, a one man army. He is an anesthesiologist by profession, an experienced nibmaster by passion- fountain pens remain his devotion despite all his busy schedules. As this is mostly a passionate endeavor rather than a commercial one, his products are not available online readily. He doesn’t maintain a separate website and produces one pen per week, so you are lucky if you can get hold of them. The specialty in most of his pens is the grinding of perfectly ordinary nibs into something extraordinary. His recent muse has been the butterline stub nibs and I was fortunate enough to be able to buy two pens from eBay from Krishnapens, where he lists his items from time to time. 1. Appearance & Design (8/10): His pens are rather well built and beautiful. The design varies from model to model, and mostly they are traditional cigar shaped pens with tapering at both ends. The nib is fitted rather healthily into the section and the nib-feed unit looks solid. The material is good quality ebonite. The colours vary according to the model, but they are bright and vibrant. The polish is good. Overall I would give the pen 8/10 for looks, considering the common traits of ebonite pens. They are large pens, but relatively light weight and well balanced. No pungent smell from any of the pens. Unfortunately I would be posting pics of only one pen as I have sent the other to him for tuning to my choice. The fountain pen The clip 2. Construction & Quality (8/10): These are solid pens. They feel compact in hand and the material looks impressive. I wouldn’t say the ebonite can compete with some 200$ custom made ebonite pen, but it’s not shabby at all. A decent looking pen available at a throwaway price. The clip is unlike something you have ever seen on any pen, it’s special. It is flat, broad piece of metal, very sturdy and effective. Dr Sreekumar states that these pens are made of Export quality ebonite. On close inspection, though there are impurities in the ebonite, that doesn’t diminish the impression of the pen at all. No company names embossed on my pens. 3. Weight & Dimensions (8/10): It’s a light weight pen. I don’t have a machine to tell the exact value. The dimensions are as follows Length Capped: 130 mm Length uncapped with nib: 120 mm Length posted: 165 mm Length of cap: 60 mm Cap Diameter: 14 mm Section diameter: 11 mm This pen feels very comfortable to hold; it slips easily into hand and writes right away. The balance is great unposted. Posted, this becomes uncomfortable as the cap doesn’t go much deep into the body. From left: Waterman Hemisphere deluxe, Pilot metropolitan, Krishna butterline stub, Jinhao X750 (all capped) From left: Waterman Hemisphere deluxe, Pilot metropolitan, Krishna butterline stub, Jinhao X750 (all posted) 4. Nib & Performance (9/10): The nib is the specialty of this pen. These nibs are ground by Dr. Sreekumar himself, with the help of his immense knowledge and experience about nibs. He fondly reminisces that he grinded his very first nib at class 7. It was a different time then with fountain pens being the symbol of education. Over the years his hand have become more and more adept at making different grinds, making ordinary medium or broad size nibs extraordinary in the process. Butterline stub nibs are in between a medium and true stub....line variations are there but the main attraction of these nibs are the smoothness and the experience while writing. It’s something you have to experience yourself. The writing surface is beveled upward. The nibs he uses for this conversion are Kanwrite nibs and Ambitious nibs. Both are Indian company. Kanwrite is the same company that produces nibs and body for Noodlers Company in US. Ambitious nibs are thinner than Kanwrite, but as they are grinded by same person the writing experience is much the same. The flow is appropriate, no feathering or blotting or burping, ink and paper remaining the same as other pens. The feed is made of ebonite and it maintains good flow as required by a stub nib. There is minimal flex, but its expected. The Kanwrite nib The pen with paper 5. Filling System & Maintenance (6/10): This is an eyedropper, no other systems available like ASA pens. Good seal between body and section ensures no leakage and the ebonite multi-finned feed ensures no burping. Ink amount inside body is about 2.5 ml. The pen remains light and well balanced even when fully inked. There may be some ebonite particles/ residues inside the barrel when you receive the pen, but it’s more of an outlook towards fountain pens than an error. Being such an avid pen lover, most fountain pen manufacturers from India just assume that a person would take some trouble to clean his pen before inking it. 6. Cost & Value (8/10): This pen is valued at INR 1500- 1800 (22$- 30$). It’s a good bargain considering the price of ebonite pens in general. This is a reliable fountain pen, in that you can always pick it up while going out, take it out in front of your colleagues, put it to paper and it will perform right away. The solid built and crisp line will invite awe and the writing experience will always please you. It’s not for the stylish line variations or calligraphy, but it’s a genuine daily workhorse. 7.Conclusion (Final score, 47/60): I ordered this pen just out of curiosity about butterline stub nibs, and I’m very impressed with this pen. It’s one of my daily pens these days. I would recommend this pen for anyone who come across them on ebay. The review on paper The shading. Thank you for reading. Bye.
  2. mehandiratta

    Ink Review - Krishna Mangal

    KRISHNA MANGAL The review is simultaneously posted at my blog here : LINK Krishna Mangal – Ink Bottle (old style) In Indian Fountain Pen industry or Circles, Dr. Sreekumar is quite known for his hand-turned fountain pens and almost 20 types of nib tuning. However recently he has shelved in to making fountain pen inks under the brand name of KRISHNA. These inks are sold on eBay India Page for Rs. 550 (8 USD) each for 5 Nos. 30 ml ink bottle plus shipping. Now they come in new glass bottles. Krishna Ink – New Glass Bottle The inks that are being produced have now increased to 35 nos. and even certain names have changed. Krishna Inks – 35 Colors The new names are as follows: Pencil Neelambal Dark Chocolate Purple Lake Blue Vivid violet Sapphire Ruby Monsoon Sky Pink Barleria Summer Rain Silent Night Sky Bronze Leaf Wild Cherry Pumpkin Nilwanti Cool Breeze Gold Rush Orange Crush After Dark Yellow Valley Glory Vine Dark Rose Magic Blue Orchard Lily Writer’s Night Peacock Neelkurinhi Emerald Mangal Dew Leaf Njaval Meadow Green Ghat Green Officer’s Blue Black I would like to thank Dr. Sreekumar for sending me the samples and also for the effort that he has put in seeing the limited resources at his disposal. This review is of Mangal ink which is very close to terracotta brick tiles used here in India for roofing. I am in love with this colour. It actually has grown on me. It is not that orangish that will make the ink bright but yes just gives you look of burnt brick. This did not gave me any nib creep problem like Diamine orange inks. INK SPLASH Krishna Mangal – Ink Splash on JK Cedar 100 gsm I love Pastel orange colour ink. DROP ON PAPER NAPKIN Krishna Mangal – Ink Drop on Paper Towel COLOUR MATCH Krishna Mangal – Colour Range WRITING SAMPLES Krishna Mangal – Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm Krishna Mangal – Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm – Angled View The ink even shades in medium and fine nibs. Ink has got no sheen and does not feather. Flow is superb. INK SWABS Krishna Mangal – Ink Passes on JK Cedar - 100 gsm Krishna Mangal – Ink Swab on Jk Cedar - 100 gsm Krishna Mangal –Scribble on JK Cedar -100 gsm WATERPROOF TEST Krishna Mangal – Waterproof Test Ink is not water resistant at all. INK DRYING TIMES Krishna Mangal – Ink Drying Times Well surprisingly the ink drying times are quite low. Just around 20 seconds. BLOW UP WRITING SAMPLES Krishna Mangal – Blow up Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm Krishna Mangal – Blow up Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm - Angled View There is no feathering of this Ink as you can see from this close-up. CONCLUSION: Its a lovely colour and I can think of Diamine Ancient Copper to be of similar colour. The ink behaves very well with no crud or feathering or even staining. This ink flows really well and is moderately lubricated (of course not as great as sailor inks). However these are well worth the money. Kudos to Dr. Sreekumar. Beautiful ink which has lovely shading. Following are the summation of ink properties: Feathering : NoSheen : NoShading : Good amountLubrication : ModerateFlow : GoodWater Resistance : BadDrying Times : GoodNib Creep : NoClogging : NoneOdor : None Feedback and Comments are welcome. The ink can be bought from the ebay store of Krishna Pens. Link is given below. LINK TO EBAY STORE : KRISHNAPENS
  3. mehandiratta

    Ink Review - Krishna Yellow Valley

    KRISHNA YELLOW VALLEY The review is simultaneously posted at my blog here : LINK Krishna Yellow Valley In Indian Fountain Pen industry or Circles, Dr. Sreekumar is quite known for his hand-turned fountain pens and almost 20 types of nib tuning. However recently he has shelved in to making fountain pen inks under the brand name of KRISHNA. These inks are sold on eBay India Page for Rs. 550 (8 USD) each for 5 Nos. 30 ml ink bottle plus shipping. Now they come in new glass bottles. Krishna Ink – New Glass Bottle The inks that are being produced have now increased to 35 nos. and even certain names have changed. Krishna Inks – 35 Colors The new names are as follows: Pencil Neelambal Dark Chocolate Purple Lake Blue Vivid violet Sapphire Ruby Monsoon Sky Pink Barleria Summer Rain Silent Night Sky Bronze Leaf Wild Cherry Pumpkin Nilwanti Cool Breeze Gold Rush Orange Crush After Dark Yellow Valley Glory Vine Dark Rose Magic Blue Orchard Lily Writer’s Night Peacock Neelkurinhi Emerald Mangal Dew Leaf Njaval Meadow Green Ghat Green Officer’s Blue Black I would like to thank Dr. Sreekumar for sending me the samples and also for the effort that he has put in seeing the limited resources at his disposal. This review is about YELLOW VALLEY ink from KRISHNA. The colour is really beautiful and I actually like these kind of greens. The ink drying are better than previous inks, it dries within 30 to 32 seconds and is to be note that bold point nib was used to check drying times. However one issue with this ink is that there is an issue with nib crud if left for longer period unattended for more than a week or so. INK SPLASH Krishna Yellow Valley – Ink Splash on JK Cedar 100 gsm I love the colour of this ink. Its kinda murky green which I like. Ink has no sheen and does not feathers. DROP ON PAPER NAPKIN Krishna Yellow Valley – Ink Drop on Paper Towel COLOUR MATCH Krishna Yellow Valley – Colour Range WRITING SAMPLES Krishna Yellow Valley – Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm Krishna Yellow Valley– Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm – Angled View As you can see from the above writing samples the ink has shading property and it shows most in stub nibs. And ink is very legible even in the fine Japanese nibs. INK SWABS & SCRIBBLE Krishna Yellow Valley– Ink Passes on JK Cedar - 100 gsm Krishna Yellow Valley – Ink Swab on Jk Cedar - 100 gsm Krishna Yellow Valley –Scribble on JK Cedar -100 gsm WATERPROOF TEST Krishna Yellow Valley – Waterproof Test The ink leaves just a bit of colour when rubbed with water and you can see the that it is still very much legible after water rub test and thus I can say it is has water resistant properties. INK DRYING TIMES Krishna Yellow Valley– Ink Drying Times BLOW UP WRITING SAMPLES Krishna Yellow Valley – Blow up Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm Krishna Yellow Valley – Blow up Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm - Angled View COMPARATIVE WITH SIMILAR COLORS Bronze Leaf vs Yellow Valley vs Ghat Green vs Meadow Green vs Goldrush CONCLUSION: I like the colour. The ink has good flow and is nominally lubricated. Dry times are still high but please note that I used the Bold wet nib for drying test. The beauty of the ink is that it is water resistant. But yes there is a bit problem with nib Creep if not used for long. Following are the summation of ink properties: Feathering : NoSheen : NoShading : ModerateLubrication : ModerateFlow : GoodWater Resistance : GoodDrying Times : Little HighNib Creep : YesClogging : NoneOdor : None Feedback and Comments are welcome. The ink can be bought from the ebay store of Krishna Pens. Link is given below. LINK TO EBAY STORE : KRISHNAPENS
  4. mehandiratta

    Ink Review - Krishna Monsoon Sky

    KRISHNA MONSOON SKY The review is simultaneously posted at my blog here : LINK Krishna Ink – Monsoon Sky In Indian Fountain Pen industry or Circles, Dr. Sreekumar is quite known for his hand-turned fountain pens and almost 20 types of nib tuning. However recently he has shelved in to making fountain pen inks under the brand name of KRISHNA. These inks are sold on eBay India Page for Rs. 550 (8 USD) each for 5 Nos. 30 ml ink bottle plus shipping. Now they come in new glass bottles. Krishna Ink – New Glass Bottle The inks that are being produced have now increased to 35 nos. and even certain names have changed. Krishna Inks – 35 Colors The new names are as follows: Pencil Neelambal Dark Chocolate Purple Lake Blue Vivid violet Sapphire Ruby Monsoon Sky Pink Barleria Summer Rain Silent Night Sky Bronze Leaf Wild Cherry Pumpkin Nilwanti Cool Breeze Gold Rush Orange Crush After Dark Yellow Valley Glory Vine Dark Rose Magic Blue Orchard Lily Writer’s Night Peacock Neelkurinhi Emerald Mangal Dew Leaf Njaval Meadow Green Ghat Green Officer’s Blue Black I would like to thank Dr. Sreekumar for sending me the samples and also for the effort that he has put in seeing the limited resources at his disposal. This review is of Monsoon Sky which is the new introduction to old 28 colours and this colour is greyish blue-green. INK SPLASH Krishna Monsoon Sky – Ink Splash on JK Cedar 100 gsm DROP ON PAPER NAPKIN Krishna Monsoon Sky – Ink Drop on Paper Towel COLOUR MATCH Krishna Monsoon Sky – Colour Range WRITING SAMPLES Krishna Monsoon Sky – Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm Krishna Monsoon Sky – Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm – Angled View This ink shades almost close to none. The ink flow is good. And has no feathering. INK SWABS & SCRIBBLE Krishna Monsoon Sky – Ink Passes on JK Cedar - 100 gsm Krishna Monsoon Sky – Ink Swab on Jk Cedar - 100 gsm Krishna Monsoon Sky –Scribble on JK Cedar -100 gsm WATERPROOF TEST Krishna Monsoon Sky – Waterproof Test Ink after water rub test leaves behind certain traces thus making ink bit water resistant and even after water wash it is still readable. INK DRYING TIMES Krishna Monsoon Sky – Ink Drying Times The ink drying times hover just around 25 to 26 seconds. BLOW UP WRITING SAMPLES Krishna Monsoon Sky – Blow up Writing Sample on JK Cedar 100 gsm CONCLUSION: The colour reminds me of Diamine Teal or Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo. But unlike Iroshizuku it has no shading or sheen. It has no feathering and has consistent flow. Its an okay ink for me because of the colour but I would any day prefer my Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo because of sheen and shading and amazing flow properties. However that comes at high price. This 30 ml bottle just costs less than Rs. 100. Following are the summation of ink properties: Feathering : NoSheen : NoShading : NoLubrication : ModerateFlow : GoodWater Resistance : GoodDrying Times : GoodNib Creep : NoClogging : NoneOdor : None Feedback and Comments are welcome. The ink can be bought from the ebay store of Krishna Pens. Link is given below. LINK TO EBAY STORE : KRISHNAPENS





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