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Newbie Wanting To Get Lamy Safari Working Better


Improbable
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I'm a student and am trying to find a good pen setup for myself. I'm a bit heavy handed with a pen; I tend to ruin ballpoints by pushing the ball upwards with a little writing, and with felt tips tend to grind the felt tip down before the ink runs out. I decided to try a Pilot Vpen and it went really well as I developed a lighter writing style with it (which helped with hand cramps too). As Pilot Vpens are pretty expensive throwaway pens I was thinking of getting a re-usable fountain pen when my friend gave me a Lamy safari for my birthday. I'm now finished the first cartridge but have had quite few problems with it and am hoping I can change some things to get it working well so it can be my main pen.

 

The problems I've had are mainly that the ink doesn't flow very well or very fast especially compared to how the Vpen worked. With the Vpen I was able to write really quickly but with the Lamy I had to write slowly or else I'd have sections of my writing where no ink came out and so letters were missing. Also, after a while the ink from the nib dried up completely. I removed the nib and ran water through it and it worked again for a while before becoming quite scratchy. I have a size M nib - would an L nib be better at letting the ink through without clogging up?

 

Also, a problem I had with both fountain pens was that when I used a highlighter over my writing the ink became very pale - would that be because the ink is water-based? Is it possible to get a fountain pen ink that doesn't do this?

 

Finally I'm wanting to switch to a refillable cartridge and find a different ink. Is it likely that I could find a cheap ink to use with the Lamy that won't clog up? As a student I do a lot of writing but don't have a lot of money to spend on stationary.

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Dear Improbable,

Welcome to Fpn. There are good guys here and defenitly your problems get solved. Continue with your fountain pens. Lamy safari is a good pen to start with.

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Thanks for the link Rafapa. I am going to order some ink and a converter and then will work through the tutorial (first cleaning the feeder and checking if that works before opening the channels). I will also try to borrow a loupe so I can see if the nib is lined up properly. It's a bit difficult working out what I need to do as it's my first real fountain pen but I think I would like a good ink flow using a fine nib but will go slowly and carefully with changing the ink flow.

 

When you say you highlight with pencil is that by way of underlining or can you get highlighter pencils that work like felt-tipped highlighters?

Edited by Improbable
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Thanks for the link Rafapa. I am going to order some ink and a converter and then will work through the tutorial (first cleaning the feeder and checking if that works before opening the channels). I will also try to borrow a loupe so I can see if the nib is lined up properly. It's a bit difficult working out what I need to do as it's my first real fountain pen but I think I would like a good ink flow using a fine nib but will go slowly and carefully with changing the ink flow.

 

When you say you highlight with pencil is that by way of underlining or can you get highlighter pencils that work like felt-tipped highlighters?

 

Levenger's used to sell highlighter pencils. I LOVE them. Just try Googling it, or try the 'bay or Amazon.

My other pen is a Montblanc and...

 

My other blog is a tumblr.

 

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welcome! and enjoy your time. The technique rafapa sent you, while totally legitimate, might be a bit advanced for a new user. I would suggest making modifications to the nib before actually fiddling with the ink channel. You say the nib is scratchy and too dry, possibly the tines are misaligned, have a close look at it, preferably through a loupe. There are plenty of topics here about adjusting nibs, have a quick search. If you aren't confident messing around with the pen, new nibs for lamy are like $20, maybe consider getting a bigger, wetter nib, such as a B.

 

you could just get the converter and ink locally (bit more expensive, but meh, convenient, parker quink is cheap)

 

edit: and yes, most fp inks are water based.

Edited by iamchum

My two best writers.

http://s2.postimg.org/v3a1772ft/M1000_Black_L_R.jpg..........http://img802.imageshack.us/img802/1217/85960889.png

.........I call this one Günter. ......... I call this one Michael Clarke Duncan.

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My Safari was also on the dry side, though I didn't experience drying out.

 

If you like your v-pen, there are techniques to refill them also.

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Hey Improbable a Lamy Vista was my second FP and it also ran on the dry side but with the tutorial by SBREbrown the nig is now one of my favorites nibs writing in a beautifully smooth and wet flow. Just make sure you dont over do it as your might spring the tines. Make sure to test after each try. Good luck

 

 

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Staedtler and Stabilo have special highlighter pencils in several colours. Just google for greenlighter or textsurfer.

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There are some inks that will stand up to highlighters, that's one of my personal requirements for a daily use ink at work.

 

If you search for some of the reviews that I've posted on here I include a highlighter test on each of them and I've covered a pretty good range. The Lamy Blue-Black is one ink that stood up really quite well, so you could get cartridges of that for easy use. There are several others that stand up will though, so have a look and find a colour you like!

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You can get a converter for your pen (Reference is Z24 if I remember correctly), and will be able to use bottled ink. I would recommend to give up on the highlighter, to buy a ruler and start to underline important things with a pencil or a ballpoint. This way, you could buy cheap ink (Parker Quink for instance) and not bother about highlighters, which are quite expensive, and which tips degrade really fast when passing over fountain pen or rollerball ink.

 

As the Lamy Safari I have are really wet writers, I am astonished by your dryness problem. I am not a huge fan of Lamy, but these pens are anything but dry writers, especially with a cartridge. It could be that the feed's canal isn't large enough, so using a cutter blade on it to dig it a bit could be the solution. But before doing this irreversible operation, read what follows.

Could it be, when you are writing fast, that you sometimes press harder on the nib ? The tines could be spreading too much, thus creating the dryness. It can happen especially on the first letter of a word. Also, if you leave your pen uncapped for a little while, sometimes a little time is needed before the pen starts to flow nicely again. Last but not least, what type of paper do you use ? Most fountain pens don't behave really well on <80g paper, or on slightly glossy paper (which is often the case with notepads or <80g paper).

http://i.imgur.com/bZFLPKY.jpg

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I had the same problem with skipping at first with my Safari. What you need to do- what you really need to do is flush it properly. There tends to be oils still in the plastic from manufacturing, and they may still be there even if you've used the pen for a while. Take a glass of lukewarm water, and put a drop (just a tad) of soap in there with it. Remove the nib for easier flushing. Flush it out several times, preferably putting the dirty water down a drain instead of back into the cup, just so you don't have to refresh the water every two flushes. Once your pen is running clear with the soapy water, do the same with lukewarm, clean, pure water. MAKE SURE TO KEEP FLUSHING UNTIL ALL SOAP BUBBLES ARE GONE FROM THE CONVERTER YOU ARE USING! That is very important. Leave to dry for a bit, and you should have a much smoother writing experience. Good luck!

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Also, Waterman ink black is probably your best bet. Writes medium-dry, so it won't smudge for quick note-taking, is cheap, comes in a bottle (get a converter for your own sanity), and is overall a wonderful ink. I trust waterman and diamine above all, they have the most solid inks. I have never, not once, had a problem.

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  • 4 months later...

Hey Improbable a Lamy Vista was my second FP and it also ran on the dry side but with the tutorial by SBREbrown the nig is now one of my favorites nibs writing in a beautifully smooth and wet flow. Just make sure you dont over do it as your might spring the tines. Make sure to test after each try. Good luck

 

 

 

Thank you! I was getting so frustrated with my new Safari. I carefully followed the directions and my pen is working so much better now. It seems to have corrected the annoying problem of it skipping on the first down stroke as well.

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