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Ink Sample Storage In Eyedropper Pen (Like The Preppy)



distaffcreations

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distaffcreations

I am relatively new to fountain pens, so don't have a big collection of empty pens on hand. I recently ordered a few samples of ink from Goulet Pens, but was only able to try out 3 of 5 due to my lack of suitable pens. I am attempting to find a "signature" ink in my favorite color of teal and am slowly working my way through my collection of samples.

 

I had an idle thought today that I could order several Platinum Preppy pens, transfer all the ink from a sample vial into a pen, then immediately be able to make a writing sample, but also leave it in the pen for storage (labelled in some way of course). As one of my daily use pens runs dry of its test ink, I can use a syringe to transfer ink from the eyedropper into it for trial.

 

Is this a feasible idea? What other options are there for instant gratification ink trials?

 

 

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I've had Preppies go dry; for short term storage, maybe they'd work but they definitely don't seal as well as the ink vials. (Except, of course, sometimes they do; I had one that I forgot in the bottom of my bag for 6 months that started up with no trouble at all. But they're not all reliable.)

I have a couple #6 nibs on a dib pen holder (cheap ones from E+M, available for 2.49 on Amazon) that I use for writing out samples. I've used nibs from Goulet and Knox brand from xfountainpens. The nice thing about this set up is that it's easy to clean and easy to switch nib sizes/styles. It isn't terribly portable, so if you're switching on the go, you're better off with a few cheap fountain pens. Preppies are also really difficult to thoroughly clean, so even if you go the "more pens" route, I wouldn't recommend Preppies. A little ink in the feed can totally change how your sample looks.

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distaffcreations

Good point on the cleaning! I've only converted one Preppy into an eyedropper, didn't think it was that hard to clean, but I wasn't concerned at the time about ink color (originally purple, now with dark green).

 

I guess that means I ought to raid my husband's set of calligraphy dip nibs and find the one that writes the most like the pen in which I want to eventually use the ink, and is not already totally gummed up with India ink. Or maybe it means I need my own set.

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The vials seem like a better storage option to me - if you keep the ink in a pen but don't use it you may find part of it evaporates and you don't get a good representation of how that ink behaves. And as is said above you can use a dip pen to sample an ink without having to fill a pen. You can even use one of your pens as a dip pen, if you immediately want to test a sample; but you want to rinse it out well before using another sample; some of the ink will cling to the feed.

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amberleadavis

Good point on the cleaning! I've only converted one Preppy into an eyedropper, didn't think it was that hard to clean, but I wasn't concerned at the time about ink color (originally purple, now with dark green).

 

I guess that means I ought to raid my husband's set of calligraphy dip nibs and find the one that writes the most like the pen in which I want to eventually use the ink, and is not already totally gummed up with India ink. Or maybe it means I need my own set.

 

 

Well, redistribution of marital aspects can be problematic. :P Welcome aboard.

 

PS - I prefer vials for storage.

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).



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distaffcreations

Well, I did find a #6 nib in my husband's collection and did a comparison with the same ink and same paper suing the dip pen and a fountain pen. It brought home to me why fountain pens are an improvement on dip pens. While using the fountain pen, I did not get ink on my fingers or stop writing in order to get more ink.

 

I like the idea of having a pen dedicated to trials, so never fully inked, just dipped. Seems like a good excuse to get an Esterbrook and several nibs for it. ;-)

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Waski_the_Squirrel

My trouble with the Preppy is that a 2mL sample does not fill it very full. It begins burping almost immediately.

 

What I do with my samples is to try them out with a glass pen. If I decide they're good, I will ink up a pen.

Edited by Waski_the_Squirrel

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TheRealScubaSteve

A dip pen (be it glass or a nib holder) is the simplest option. Dipping a fountain pen will give you a much truer representation of how the ink will look color-wise (dip pens tend to lay down much darker/heavier color), but to clean out the feed after each sample can become very cumbersome. It all depends on how many samples you purchase, I suppose.

 

As Waski said, dip nibs are a good way of ruling out any ink samples that you do not like, which will be inevitable. If you truly don't mind the endless cleaning, purchasing a pen with easily replaceable nibs will be a good option for testing. Some inks (Bad Blue Heron, for example) look much darker in finer nibs than broader, but other inks hold true to the reverse.

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Instead of a vintage Estie - which are nice pens and I won't dissuade you from that course! - I use a Lamy Vista.

 

It is the same pen as the common Safari, and the same reasonable price. It's a demonstrator, a true demonstrator with a clear section. You can see in the feed to see if it's clean. And if it isn't, it's friction fit so you can get the thing out to clean it.

 

It also has a wide variety of easily changed nibs available. I have the whole set and swap through them to test out a new ink. It takes all or most of a converter to do it, especially when you get the 1.9mm stub going.

 

I can test all the sizes, but clean only one pen.

--

Lou Erickson - Handwritten Blog Posts

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