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Hello everyone,

 

So I have tried inking my Lamy Al-Star (EF) with Noodler's Bad Blue Heron ink, and I have been running into what I can only describe as some flow problems.

 

What I am experiencing is ink drying or perhaps congealing at the tip of the nib, and it makes it so that the pen needs to be stroked a few times before the ink starts to flow again. And even after I start writing the ink seems hard to get out and flowing easily.

 

I am new to fountain pens and I would like some advice on whether or not I need to get a larger nib or do something about the ink to remedy this issue.

 

Thanks a lot,

MPenn

 

P.S. And if anyone has had experience with how Bad Blue Heron flows and works in a Pilot Metropolitan (F) I would love to hear about it as well!

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I'm sure others have had good experiences using the more troublesome Noodler's inks, but I prefer to use the more "sticky" bulletproof Noodler's inks such as Bad Blue Heron in pens that I can easily take apart completely to scrub clean after every each time I use up all the things. I've had a hard enough time getting heavily saturated Diamine inks to clean out of my Safari, so I don't even bother putting Noodler's inks in it.

 

The great thing about the Metropolitans and most other Pilot pens in that range (78G, Kakuno, Prera, etc.) is that you can pull the nib and feed out to thoroughly clean them. My only caution about the Metropolitan is that there is a big step between the barrel and section that might interfere with your grip. For that reason I find those pens to be uncomfortable to write with and opted for 78Gs instead. 78Gs are cheap-feeling plastic and car wear out, but they write amazingly well, can be cleaned out easily, and feel great in my hand.

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Also, if you check out the reviews for Bad Blue Heron on here, you'll see that it often dries out on the nib. Also, one tricky aspect of Noodler's inks is batch variations. For example, the bottle of Bad Blue Heron I bought a few months ago is ridiculously wet and unlike the sample I tried years earlier which fit the characteristics described in the reviews on here.

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Bo Bo Olson

It's always a question of what you want the nib to do. Lamy is a nail, so is then the nib. EF....medium narrow.

What do you want the ink to do. Heron sounds to be a troublesome ink, and is supersaturated, which means you have to do a lot of maintenance.

I would suggest making a pen flush, of 10% non-suddsing household ammonia*** and distilled water. Suck up water with a rubber baby bulb and squirt it though.

*** house hold ammonia is already diluted so you don't have to worry about too strong at 10%.

 

Get another ink that is not causing such problems. I looked hard and long on the reviews of Apache Sunset and Golden Brown before ordering them, in I had read there were many Noodler problem inks.

They too are supersaturated inks....so I have to do more and deeper maintenance.

 

With an EF nib...you don't want to go into shading or sheen inks, in it is too narrow. You need F or M would be better for sheen inks. F&M are good for shading inks....though I prefer the softer ride of 'true' regular flex nibs to nails. They are slightly wetter.

 

First you should not take your Lamy nib apart like a Twsbi or Ahab, it's not made for that. The more one takes the nib off the more major wear happens with the Lamy. It takes some 4-5-7 days for the nib replacement to settle into the feed.

 

Always go to Ink Reviews to see what good, or bad an ink is.

 

What do you want the ink to do.................a big dark/bright wet line? That is often what a noobie wants, a super gel line. In they don't know better.

Two tone shading ins are 'pastel, or 'wishy-washy.'... as described by noobies with one fountain pen and six gel pens. I chase only shading ink....soon though I'll be chasing sheen/glitter inks.

One needs wider nibs and good to better paper for sheen inks.

 

I find a vivid monotone wet line to be boring. Then how long do you have to wait for the 'wet' line to dry....and what does it look like dry? Golden Brown .... can only be written on the back after you have written the next sheet of paper.....too slow to dry.

Which can happen with other supersaturated inks.

 

There are some 300 Noodler inks for you to investigate in Ink Reviews.

Your nib is too narrow to shade with so don't worry about the Euro inks.

I know nothing of Japanese inks in for ages they were too expensive to use....and I'd have to learn Japanese to find out what color they are.

If you ever get an Lamy F or M....do look at Lamy inks.......not the Green though....never that...worlds second worst green ink after Diamine Green Meadow.

The turquoise is what use to be the basis color of turquoise. Will shade on 90g paper. The Violet is well known and liked...and many wish it was in a bottle. The Lamy ink bottle is a classic.....one needs one....even if one is using only MB's. ;)

BB ain't what is once was....but can be sold in the US....Pelikan said for such a niche market they will not change their BB.....Waterman BB is ok too.

 

Lots of inks that don't cause any problems like the ink you have.....and should toss.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

RIP...200's once great nib, now a double ball.:crybaby::wallbash:

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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Before you change nibs, I'd look through the vast sea of reviews for Diamine inks and see if anything strikes your fancy. Many of them are extremely well behaved inks and will flow marvelously in your Lamy. They are also modestly priced and worth the money. I'm sure one of Diamine's blues in a similar color to Bad Blue Heron will be just the thing...many of the blues are even very water-resistant.

 

Addendum: I should have started this post with "Assuming you don't want to experiment with other nib sizes and styles..."

Edited by TruthPil

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amberleadavis

Well, wait - this is the HUGE benefit of an Al-Star. You won't regret having different nibs. The Al-star nibs are super easy to change even in the middle of a fill.

 

I personally use a 1.1 and love it. It's not really a 1.1, but it is perfect for an EDC.

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



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I have to admit, the broad nib on my Safari is so smooth and amazing that it made my finally break out of my EF/F only lifestyle. :)

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Thanks everyone for your thoughtful replies. I read them all and am currently (slowly) looking through all the reviews I can find on here about the different ink options I have (apparently there are dozens of hundreds). I will certainly look closely at Diamine and Lamy brand inks.

 

As far as what I want from my inks and pens right now...since I am new, all I really want I suppose is nice flow and a line dark enough to be readable and usable in most situations (from formal documents to everyday note taking). I am sure that I will eventually get into the finer aspects of fountain pens after a while using them and frequenting this forum.

 

Thanks again.

MPenn

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I started with a fine-nibbed Nemosine Singularity and Noodler's (Bulletproof) Black.

It did exactly what you are looking for marvelously and I didn't even think about other inks or pens for a year or two after that.

 

You might want to consider getting a fine (F) nib to help with potential flow problems, but that all depends on your handwriting size and style. If you write tiny letters then sticking with the EF may be the way to go, but moving up to an F will improve flow with some inks and isn't too much bigger.

 

You'll definitely need to get something other than Bad Blue Heron though if you want good flow and cleanability.

Noodler's Black is fadeproof, waterproof, and has performed wonderfully in every pen and on every paper I've ever tried.

As long as you don't let it dry out in the pen and flush the pen out after every few fills, you shouldn't have any problems with flow.

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Bo Bo Olson

Supersaturated=more maintenance as Phil just said.

But in most change inks often, the pen gets cleaned with the next color.

 

We are living in the Golden Age of Ink.

The Golden Age of Pens died in the 1950's. :unsure: :(

The Golden Age of Papers died in the 1970-80's. :crybaby:

 

Old vintage pens I can get....but old great paper.....sigh.

 

I don't care for Diamine, but I'm OCD on feathering/woolly lines.

R&K, MB, Pelikan 4001....outside the Royal Blue it fades are good inks. Pelikan black was for decades second to Aurora black.....now Noodlers has blacker inks that work better with pp paper.

I don't need black, so still have half a bottle of Pelikan Black as the second ink I bought coming back to fountain pens some 7-8 years ago. Works fine for me, but I don't use real narrow nibs on very poor paper....where it will show up gray. Do use one of the many Noodler Black inks for very poor paper.

 

and once you get away from wet thick line.....Herbin is great shading ink. It is not really....'pastel' or "Wishy-Washy" :angry:

 

It is something you learn.....like sour dirty red wine from Bordeaux. is supposed to taste so....and soon, one likes it....sour and dirty. :o There are of course better years than others for that.

PS 12 degrees Celsius -54 F, is where you want your red wine to be....unless you sold your Benz for a case of wine. Most normal good red wines should be drank at that temperature and at 12 years of age........it can always warm up in the glass.

Room temperature is only if your castle has 3-4 foot thick walls, very tall ceilings, a deep cool cellar, and quick personnel...

16-18c is for great older $$$$ wines. (No matter what the bottle recommends...in they all recommend that or 'no one' would take the wine serious.)

 

A young vintner said that...along with white wine at 7 degrees and at oldest 7 years.

I really can't afford a 100 year old white Rhine wine.... :mellow:

Normal good wine for normal people.

 

Shading inks are two toned from sitting on top of good to better papers and drying at slightly different rates to thick to thin....90g paper and +, outside of 80g Rhoda. Some DA are shading inks, Some Noodlers too.

R&K, MB, Pelikan 4001 and Herbin are shading inks. I really, really like Lie de Thee`, a great light-medium brown shading ink.

A month ago I had it in three pens.

 

Noodlers does make some of the best inks for writing in the shower or living in Seattle, or if you never learned to put your cup down on the empty part of the desk...away from where you direct music.

Edited by Bo Bo Olson

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

RIP...200's once great nib, now a double ball.:crybaby::wallbash:

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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Well, wait - this is the HUGE benefit of an Al-Star. You won't regret having different nibs. The Al-star nibs are super easy to change even in the middle of a fill.

 

I personally use a 1.1 and love it. It's not really a 1.1, but it is perfect for an EDC.

 

I second that emotion!

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I personally use a 1.1 and love it. It's not really a 1.1, but it is perfect for an EDC.

 

So true. My Al Star was I think I medium when I bought it back in 1998. A number of years later, I had to replace the section due to a break on the threads while in the pen. I bought one with a fine. Didn't have enough foresight to keep the medium. A few years ago (2013?) I bought a 1.1 for it and the fine hasn't been back on.

 

Currently inked with Lamy Pacific Blue, as does my Pelikan M200 with an OB. Guess which shades better? Not the Lamy.

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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For what it sounds like you want get a fine. The thing with EF nibs is that often times if you have an interesting ink - shading, sheen etc..... you can't see it very well. And its an optical illusion, especially with "lighter" colors. (Apache Sunset - tried it in a pen with an EF once - hated it. But in anything F or wider, its wonderful.

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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For what it sounds like you want get a fine. The thing with EF nibs is that often times if you have an interesting ink - shading, sheen etc..... you can't see it very well. And its an optical illusion, especially with "lighter" colors. (Apache Sunset - tried it in a pen with an EF once - hated it. But in anything F or wider, its wonderful.

 

I agree, moving from EF to F opens up a whole new world of exciting ink options without having to increase one's letter size much.

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amberleadavis

We'd also love to see some of your tests and experiments. We hare happy to give feedback.

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



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Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 366 Inks in 2016



Check out inks sorted by color: Blue Purple Brown Red Green Dark Green Orange Black Pinks Yellows Blue-Blacks Grey/Gray UVInks Turquoise/Teal MURKY

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tonybelding

Bad Blue Heron is a very close relative of Noodler's Texas Blue Bonnet -- my all time favorite blue ink, and one I am very, very familiar with.

 

TBB has many attractive features (waterproof, amazing shading, etc.), but it is a "high maintenance" ink that leaves blue deposits on nibs and feeds. I am picky about which pens I use it in, preferring ones that seal up well when capped and that can be disassembled and sonic-cleaned when necessary.

 

Most Noodler's Inks are not like this. There's no need to jump to another brand. You mentioned Diamine. . . Well sure, Diamine is good stuff, but (for example) Diamina Asa Blue and Noodler's Blue are very similar, and neither one is likely to cause you any difficulty at all. They're both much more easy-going than TBB & BBH.

 

EDIT/PS: I have to express just a little amusement at how many fountain pen newbies these days start out -- first ink they try -- with an exotic boutique ink like Bad Blue Heron, or La Reine Mauve, or Herbin Rouge Hematite, or some kind of iron gall ink or pigmented document ink instead of the old mainstays of Skrip / Quink / Waterman. How does this happen?

Edited by tonybelding
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amberleadavis

Tony - as one of the people who got sucked back into FPs - it happened BECAUSE of the exotic boutique ink. It was the amazing color of BSB that got me hooked (again), but BSB is the poster child for high maintenance.

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



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Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 366 Inks in 2016



Check out inks sorted by color: Blue Purple Brown Red Green Dark Green Orange Black Pinks Yellows Blue-Blacks Grey/Gray UVInks Turquoise/Teal MURKY

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Thanks again for all the replies. Yes I do plan on getting more nib sizes for my Lamy pens (I believe they come in a pack) for the purpose of switching to the Fine nib and having others to experiment with.

 

As for trying out a boutique ink as my first ink...the answer is I didn't know it was so boutique. LOL. But hey, learning is learning and I really don't regret a second of it. I think that many other people new to fountain pens find themselves in my position due to the sheer excitement of starting a new hobby (for me, my FPs have become my everyday pens--and it will probably stay that way forever tbh).

 

And yes, as I learn more about FPs I will probably eventually post stuff like reviews and opinion posts on here about the things I find and do.

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As for trying out a boutique ink as my first ink...the answer is I didn't know it was so boutique. LOL. But hey, learning is learning and I really don't regret a second of it. I think that many other people new to fountain pens find themselves in my position due to the sheer excitement of starting a new hobby (for me, my FPs have become my everyday pens--and it will probably stay that way forever tbh).

 

And yes, as I learn more about FPs I will probably eventually post stuff like reviews and opinion posts on here about the things I find and do.

 

Whenever an ink doesn't work for a pen, it's just an excuse to get another pen. :D

The really finicky Noodler's inks like Bad Blue Heron are perfect for Chinese pens that you can disassemble like Jinhao X750 and X450. Your BBH will look great flowing from a juicy Jinhao nib and the pens are are just a couple dollars, less than a Lamy nib.

 

Welcome to this group of FP addicts...err.. enthusiasts. Your wallet will surely suffer, but worlds of amazing colors and writing experiences await!

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Whenever an ink doesn't work for a pen, it's just an excuse to get another pen. :D

The really finicky Noodler's inks like Bad Blue Heron are perfect for Chinese pens that you can disassemble like Jinhao X750 and X450. Your BBH will look great flowing from a juicy Jinhao nib and the pens are are just a couple dollars, less than a Lamy nib.

 

Welcome to this group of FP addicts...err.. enthusiasts. Your wallet will surely suffer, but worlds of amazing colors and writing experiences await!

Thanks for the suggestion.

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