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Need Clarification On Paper Quality


TechnicGeek
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Hello there,

 

There are definitions and terms sometimes that I bump into and don't know meaning of. Would appreciate your help in clarifying.

 

Let's start with definitions of words. Refillable and loose-leaf are basically synonyms of same thing i.e. in this case paper that is removable. Is that correct and which of these 2 words are more used today?

 

Moving on to leather journal with binder rings, are these also "loose-leaf"? Can they be referred to as "loose-leaf construction" journals or something? I wouldn't think "refillable" makes sense for refillable journal whereas in paper context "refillable paper" sounds right.

 

Now about paper. is there typical term for paper that is fountain pen, gel pen and rollerball pens "friendly"? Sometimes I want to know how to distinguish such paper from normal everyday paper. When I want to buy Leuchtturm 1917 paper or Clairefontaine, I always find by brand name but is there something general that would help me find paper by quality rather than by brand?

 

Does "quality writing paper" make sense to anyone?

 

Thanks!

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I'm going to give my opinion on this - may not be right and do take it with a grain of salt.

 

Refillable is more on the folder/notebook cover side, a refillable folder/notebook cover means that you can finish up the paper/notebook inside and put in a replacement so that you can continue using the folder/notebook cover. Muji's 30 ring A4 folder and Midori Traveler's Notebook comes to mind as examples.

 

Looseleaf then, refers to the paper. Specifically, paper that is not bound in any way (not stapled or glued etc). A few brands carry such paper, Muji, Campus, Maruman etc.

 

As said above: the journal (even with rings!) is refillable, while paper is looseleaf.

 

For FP friendly paper, what you want to keep an eye out for is thicker paper. Generally, above 80gsm is good. Of course, this merely functions as a rule of thumb. There are always exceptions with the rule - for example, Tomoe River is 52gsm yet takes FP ink really really well. If you're into shading, find papers with coating on it, but bear in mind it will take longer for the ink to dry.

 

Yes there is quality writing paper - I like my Tomoe River and Rhodia/Clairefontaine pads.

 

Hope I helped! :)

 

 

 

~Epic

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1348/557449480_2f02cc3cbb_m.jpg http://null.aleturo.com/Dumatborlon/Badges/5EH4/letter.png
 
A sincere man am I
From the land where palm trees grow,
And I want before I die
My soul's verses to bestow.
 
All those moments will be lost in time.
Like tears in rain.
Time to die.

 

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Thanks for chiming in. Yes that makes sense. I searched for "loose leaf construction" and first results referred to patents. Here's one: http://www.google.com.na/patents/US3253602

 

Apparently binder can have loose leaf construction but you can't say that journal has loose leaf construction, can you? Even saying that journal has refillable construction sounds unclear unless it's refillable design that is.

 

So 80g paper is considered as thick paper? How many grams would normal everyday paper have?

Edited by TechnicGeek
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paper thickness is measured by weight

The measure is usually given either as grams per square metre or pounds for 500 sheets of "basic size"

 

Unfortunately basic size varies quite a bit depending on usage.

 

75gsm is fairly standard copier paper. However how the paper is made will also affect the quality for writing on. Laid paper might have chain lines, a deckle edge and a fairly rough surface but be good quality paper. This won't be smooth to write on though. Paper can be hot or cold pressed, coated, and so on. Some really lightweight papers can be good while heavyweight ones can be bad. Your best bet is to see what other people have tried before buying a lifetime supply, but also try them yourself. I don't mind the ridges on laid paper my wife prefers a smooth finish.

 

https://www.paperandmore.com/content/understanding-paper-weights

 

http://www.paper-paper.com/weight.html

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Zwack, thanks for providing these references. I grew up in my dad's printing shop, so I knew a lot of it, but this will be very handy.

Rationalizing pen and ink purchases since 1967.

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+1 on both LordEpic and zwack's responses.

And thanks to OP for raising a good question.

 

I agree that refillable usually means that the cover ( usually leather but not always) is detachable from the journal. Once you completely use up all of the pages of the journal you can simply buy a refill of it, remove the cover from the old book usually by slipping it off. And slip the cover on to the new book.

 

Loose leaf usually refers to the paper itself generally signifying that the paper is not bound in any way.

 

The hybrid situation of flexible/movable/detachable pages from a binder is a different category altogether. You can start with loose leaf paper and 3-hole punch it to attach it to a 3-ring binder. There are also other alternatives, filofax , staples arc and levenger circa systems are all examples of the same. Although they are both loose leaf as well as refillable in the technical sense. I don't see them referred as that anywhere, probably to avoid confusion.

 

As far as paper quality is concerned for fountain pen friendliness, you do have some empirical measures as far as paper weight. But the weight doesn't directly correlate to FP friendliness.

 

The FP friendliness is really more of a function of how porous and absorbant the paper is. If it resists absorbing the ink and causing bleeding and feathering, then we call it FP friendly paper. Some of the best paper Tomoe River as mentioned, only has a 52 gsm rating. There are much heavier papers out there which are not good for FPs at all.

 

I found the Wikipedia article on paper size quite informative.

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paper_size

 

This leaves us with not a lot if ways of knowing how well the paper will respond to FP ink. You just have to either experience it firsthand or maybe check the forums like fpn to read about other people's impressions.

 

Sorry for the long post.

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Actually your long post helped me to spot what I have overlooked to explain:

 

I agree that refillable usually means that the cover ( usually leather but not always) is detachable from the journal. Once you completely use up all of the pages of the journal you can simply buy a refill of it, remove the cover from the old book usually by slipping it off. And slip the cover on to the new book.

Loose leaf usually refers to the paper itself generally signifying that the paper is not bound in any way.

 

The hybrid situation of flexible/movable/detachable pages from a binder is a different category altogether. You can start with loose leaf paper and 3-hole punch it to attach it to a 3-ring binder. There are also other alternatives, filofax , staples arc and levenger circa systems are all examples of the same. Although they are both loose leaf as well as refillable in the technical sense. I don't see them referred as that anywhere, probably to avoid confusion.

 

The journal actually does not have hard cover backing. Instead of backing there's just leather that has 3-ring binder affixed to it and all pages are loose-leaf with 3 holes in each and are attached to the binder.

Can this type of journal be called loose-leaf construction journal or it's still refillable construction/design journal despite of it not being hard cover with pages as refill in itself bound by leather? Is this the type of hybrid?
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I don't know if you can generalize as much as it sounds like you are trying to.

 

For example, Red n Black notebooks come two different ways I am aware of: hardbound/clothbound and wire bound. The paper is 90 gsm paper and is very fountain pen friendly. And it is available at an affordable price. A4 and A5 sizes.

 

Rhodia paper on the other hand comes in the web notebook, and pads. 80 gsm, A4, A5 and other sizes. Also very good with fountain pens.

 

Basildon Bond (UK) is less slick than the other two but is still good with fountain pens. It is a bit more absorbent but still very good in my opinion. 40 sheet pads.

 

HP LaserJet 24 lb/90 gsm is pretty good. InkJet papers or combo papers typically aren't as good as the LaserJet specific. (HP also makes a 32 lb)

Brad

"Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind" - Rudyard Kipling
"None of us can have as many virtues as the fountain-pen, or half its cussedness; but we can try." - Mark Twain

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