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Possible Causes Of A Wooly Line?



ScarletWoodland

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ScarletWoodland

I've had to admit defeat and email the manufacturer about a new pen's horribly wooly line, having eliminated every cause I can think of. What potential problems am I missing from the list? Hopefully the thread can be of use to others as well.

 

* Nib too dry to cover texture of papers

* Nib too wet for papers

* Feathery ink on the papers

* Paper that causes feathering with inks used

* Water in the feed still from cleaning

 

In the case of my pen, it leaves a very wooly line on 90gsm Rhodia and Clairefontaine papers, a visibly wooly line on 80gsm Rhodia paper, a less than crisp and rather blobby line on 68gsm Tomoe River and a passable but blobby line on 52gsm Tomoe River. I have tried Robert Oster Blue Sea, Monteverde Capri Blue, three Diamine inks and finally Waterman Serenity Blue to varying degrees of ugliness. Serenity blue was purchased to try as a last resort, having let the pen dry out fully for 36 hours nib down in a shot glass of tissue paper, after a thorough, water only cleaning.

 

Could the tipping be faulty somehow? I can't see anything through my phone's camera but then I'm not sure I'd know what to look for. The pen is a smooth, Lamy 2000 medium with a wet - moderate flow as far as I can tell. Very wet inks performed worst as they added blobbiness but even drier inks gave a jagged line. Diamine Midnight caused very hard starts, which was pretty odd and Capri Blue skipped extensively on premium Rhodia. Print looks markedly cleaner than cursive.

 

Colour me baffled and a little bit upset. Have had a run of bad, fountain pen luck these past months.

 

I feel like the most useful pic to show is this one as the conditions should in theory be perfect:

 

Tomoe River 68gsm paper + Waterman Serenity Blue, in comparison with two cheap Jinhaos full of super wet Noodler's inks, a Jinhao italic with Iroshizuku Tsuki Yo and a wet, Sheaffer Sagaris with a diluted mix of De Atramentis document inks at the bottom. It's subtle on this paper but shouldn't be there at all. 20200525_185016.jpg

Edited by ScarletWoodland
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TheDutchGuy

Forgive me, but I’m not sure what the problem is. You refer to wooly lines and blobbiness but could you perhaps elaborate a bit?

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Bo Bo Olson

Simple, send the pen back to Lamy for a free repair, send your samples of a woolly line. They will fix the problem.....may take them a while they are a tad slow from all reports, but free, so one can wait a couple weeks longer than hoped....for free.

 

What dry inks have you used like R&K, Herbin, Lamy or Pelikan?

 

I'm against woolly lines my self, so don't use certain inks, Diamine, Akkerman. One or two limited Edition MB inks have been a disappointment also.

Don't use post '97 Pelikans outside the 200 which is still '80-90's clean line.

 

Dutch Guy.....fuzzy, woolly lines should not happen with good ink on good paper.

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.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

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

 

 

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ScarletWoodland

And here I thought I'd elaborated far too much 😄.

 

This is what I mean...20200525_185247.jpg

 

The ink and paper get along fine with every other pen.

 

Independent of ink and to varying degrees on different papers, this nib will not give a clean or crisp line.

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ScarletWoodland

Simple, send the pen back to Lamy for a free repair, send your samples of a woolly line. They will fix the problem.....may take them a while they are a tad slow from all reports, but free, so one can wait a couple weeks longer than hoped....for free.

 

What dry inks have you used like R&K, Herbin, Lamy or Pelikan?

 

I'm against woolly lines my self, so don't use certain inks, Diamine, Akkerman. One or two limited Edition MB inks have been a disappointment also.

Don't use post '97 Pelikans outside the 200 which is still '80-90's clean line.

 

Dutch Guy.....fuzzy, woolly lines should not happen with good ink on good paper.

Thanks, glad I'm not going bonkers 😄. Have emailed Lamy to ask their advice and hopefully they'll say to send it in for repair. A shame expensive pens still have issues but at least there's recourse to get it sorted when it happens.

 

Trying to think which really dry inks I have to test... might give pelikan 4001 turquoise a try.

Edited by ScarletWoodland
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TheDutchGuy

This is what I mean...

 

Thank you! Now I see what you mean. I’m not entirely sure that this means that the nib has been incorrectly shaped or tuned. My first guess would be irregular flow, perhaps due to remnants of manufacturing oils on the nib and/or the feed. A repeated flush with lukewarm water with some (as in: not much!) dishwashing soap might help. Flush out the detergent and dry the nib and feed with some tissue paper. Fill the pen with ink of your choice but _do not_ clean the excess ink from the nib and feed (you can remove excess ink from the section of course). Leave the nib and feed saturated with ink overnight, remove the excess ink in the morning and give the pen a try. If it still doesn’t write as it should, then send it back under warranty. I’ve had good results with this method several times.

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ScarletWoodland

 

Thank you! Now I see what you mean. Im not entirely sure that this means that the nib has been incorrectly shaped or tuned. My first guess would be irregular flow, perhaps due to remnants of manufacturing oils on the nib and/or the feed. A repeated flush with lukewarm water with some (as in: not much!) dishwashing soap might help. Flush out the detergent and dry the nib and feed with some tissue paper. Fill the pen with ink of your choice but _do not_ clean the excess ink from the nib and feed (you can remove excess ink from the section of course). Leave the nib and feed saturated with ink overnight, remove the excess ink in the morning and give the pen a try. If it still doesnt write as it should, then send it back under warranty. Ive had good results with this method several times.

Any oils should be long gone after 6 thorough cleanings and different inks fills but I'll definitely give the second part a try, thanks 🙂

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Bo Bo Olson

Dutch Guy

This is a paste of another post.....that is @.....I do have better, but it popped up first.

 

I do call a bumpy, lumpy line feathering. ....later a woolly line. And it is not just a nib problem, but if as in this case many different inks are used on good to better ppaer, it can well be a nib problem....like on the post 97 Pelikan 400/600/800/1000. The 200 still has a clean line, like the rest of the '82-97 or '50-65 era nibs.

 

In this case it could be a fat and blobby Lamy nib, just like those Pelikan nibs....sometimes a hand made and they still make them in the second floor of the factory on antique .....'60-70's machines.

I don't think Lamy 2000 has a reputation of making a fat and blobby nib.

 

IMO, a lumpy, woolly line is first stage of feathering....the last stage is real feather threads running off at angles into the paper, like with Ink Jet paper...............others might have another term, I don't know, for a non smooth; lumpy, bumpy non paper caused line.

 

There are inks that show that behavior, and others that have a clean line on the same paper, with @ the same nib width and flex.

 

Does it have to do with how wet a nib is?....semi-flex is a wetter nib.That I believe is more an ink problem than a paper problem.

Lamy ink is a dry ink.....so the 2000 could be a wetter writing nib to match up to the dry ink......like Waterman made a narrow nib for a wet ink.

.

 

But even so, I'd not compared a dryer writing regular flex with a wetter semi-flex...having noticed the difference nearly a decade ago. & have no need to cheat. Nor do I even want too, I'm looking for a clean line. With good paper I can get a clean line with semi-flex...or regular flex....or even a nail.

 

 

I've used good to better papers over the years for testing..........minimum is Oxford Optic90g/Red&Black notebooks paper, or Clarefontaine Velote 90g. Both are equal to each other.

 

50-100% cotton swallows shading and increases feathering. Rossler 120g was so delightful to write on it would be illegal to write on it on Sunday in Kansas.....but feathered (and bleed like mad) too much to ever buy more than a sample sheet. Same with all Rossler papers. Still got some of the ten sheets I bought of various ones...be a shame to stick them in the printer....might as well, won't write on them.

(Very much dislike the feathering Brunner papers...all, (even the deckle paper :crybaby: ) outside their M&K papers :thumbup:)

I find 25% cotton on the whole to be good paper for shading and don't feather/woolly line much.

 

In feathering/woolly is often an ink problems, that the wrong paper can make worse....a good paper can cut it down ''''some''''. IMO, even a great paper won't turn a feathering BEF into a Mag F. I would think a great paper would turn BEF into NEF not more.(More detail on my system of woolly lines later.)

 

I really got to read up on dilution of an ink........want to save that Pelikan Aventurine, perhaps I can turn my few Diamine/Akkermann inks into users with dilution.

 

Howsoever I'm OCD/AR on feathering.

BEF....bare eyed feathering/lumpy line....seen while sitting....like Diamine. (Yes with over 200 inks there must be some that can pass the BEF test.) Yet....I have seen very many ink tests on the Com, (Including Diamine or Akkermann) where they do not show (tell or perhaps know) in the form that it feathers :huh: ; and it is obvious in the pictures of the ink in it's test, that the line is uneven...lumpy...bumpy line., that is feathering. It is not a clean line. :doh:

There are many other inks other than Diamine that are only good at BEF level. Pelikan Aventurine ... (Got to try that ink on the Rhodia 90g or Triomphe....I do like the color of the Pelikan Feather Champ.)

 

Outside noticing the differences of nib and paper....I was not and am not into false judging of an ink (by maker), pen nor paper. I want a clean line, as clean as possible.

 

NEF....near eye feathering/lumpy or woolly line....seen while looking at it near my eye. Looks just about OK while sitting. There are many like that. When one takes a close look, it shows feathering/woolly line. No clean smooth line. :(

 

With a Big Honking Magnifying glass.1 1/2 inch by 3 x 4 inches or 2.7 by 7 1/2 x 10cm. (No you can't use your 10X loupe...everything has a woolly line under that.)

 

Mag F...what I'd consider a descent ink....if I like the tone, I will buy it again. Feathering/woolly line can be seen under magnification only. :thumbup:

 

NoMAG F.......great ink ...buy more...buy stockin the company. No feathering/woolly line at all, even when looking through the big, thick magnifying glass. :notworthy1:

 

 

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.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

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

 

 

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ScarletWoodland

I'd almost talked myself into it being an unusual "too wet/ feathering" problem, when I found Diamine Honey Burst talked it into working (it's a pen whisperer that almost never feathers) but nope.

 

I've just tried the same ink (Robert Oster Tranquility) in a dip pen on three papers and again in the Lamy 2k. It only left wooly lines in the 2000, the soaking wet dip pen writing was completely fine. Something's amok here.

Edited by ScarletWoodland
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I have encountered a similar problem on occasion, while using various pens.

In my cases, a woolly line has often been caused by a really, really narrow/fine fibre getting caught between the tines of my pens’ nibs. Usually a transparent fibre.

 

I have had it happen when writing on cheap, porous/fibrous paper, when writing on 80gsm Rhodia, and when writing on the 90gsm Clairefontaine paper that is in Rhodia Webnotebooks.

I have concluded therefore that the rogue fibre may have come from the paper, or equally-possibly have been a loose hair, or have been blown-in on the wind.

 

In order to be able to actually see the rogue fibre I have sometimes had to use a 20x magnification jewellers’ loupe.

When I have seen such a fibre, I have found that the longer, more-easily-visible, ones can be grasped between one’s fingernails & then removed, but the ones that have required the use of a loupe in order to see them have required the use of tweezers to get them out from between the tines.

The smallest fibre that has ever blighted my nibs (so far) extended from the nib by maybe a fifth of the length of the nib tipping. I use F nibs. A fibre that small turned my crisp F nib into something that scrawled a woolly mess that was at least as wide as a nib marked M.

 

Obviously, this may not be the cause of your 2000’s malfunction, but if you have not already done so IMO you should examine its nib under the highest magnification that you have available.

Foul in clear conditions, but handsome in the fog.

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ScarletWoodland

I have encountered a similar problem on occasion, while using various pens.

In my cases, a woolly line has often been caused by a really, really narrow/fine fibre getting caught between the tines of my pens nibs. Usually a transparent fibre.

 

 

Obviously, this may not be the cause of your 2000s malfunction, but if you have not already done so IMO you should examine its nib under the highest magnification that you have available.

That does feel like a distinct possibility, thank you. I've had that happen with large fibres, which make it very obvious but never a tiny wee one. The best magnification I have at the moment is 8x on my phone camera, which is less than ideal but did manage to focus quite well. I couldn't see anything but then it's such a chunky nib, with half of it hooded, that it could easily be entirely hidden. Will definitely suggest it to Lamy when they answer (lockdown backlog willing). This isn't a pen I'd fancy taking apart myself.

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Nibs can be smooth because they're wet, or because they're ground to a very smooth finish. Here it seems like the flow is moderate to dry, but the grind is smooth - the nib's reflecting the roughness of the paper underneath through the amount of ink it's leaving behind.

 

I'd suggest using a brass shim to clear up any gunk between the tines.

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ScarletWoodland

Nibs can be smooth because they're wet, or because they're ground to a very smooth finish. Here it seems like the flow is moderate to dry, but the grind is smooth - the nib's reflecting the roughness of the paper underneath through the amount of ink it's leaving behind.

 

I'd suggest using a brass shim to clear up any gunk between the tines.

I'll give it a go, thanks. That was my first instinct, when print (wetter) came out cleaner than cursive (drier) but then I got thoroughly confused when wet inks fared worse than dry ones. The hooded nib is less than ideal in this situation but hopefully i can get in far enough to make a difference 🙂.

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my guess is: the ink would need penetrate the paper 'adequately' without feathering, the nib would need to deliver enough ink to cover the surface of the paper.

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I've seen "wooly lines" as a result of the tines too far apart, or the bottom of the tines too far apart because the space between the tines is in an inverted V shape. In my days I've corrected nibs, ruined nibs, ruined then corrected nibs and every other combination. I've definitely had sloppy lines before then they end clean and crisp. Hard to say that there is a particular maneuver that fixes the situation in every case. The one that always gets me is if I've been struggling for days to get a nib to work right (ie, perfect) and then find a good push straight back into the sections would solve multiple problems and the nib starts writing like perfection forevermore.

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ScarletWoodland

I've seen "wooly lines" as a result of the tines too far apart, or the bottom of the tines too far apart because the space between the tines is in an inverted V shape. In my days I've corrected nibs, ruined nibs, ruined then corrected nibs and every other combination. I've definitely had sloppy lines before then they end clean and crisp. Hard to say that there is a particular maneuver that fixes the situation in every case. The one that always gets me is if I've been struggling for days to get a nib to work right (ie, perfect) and then find a good push straight back into the sections would solve multiple problems and the nib starts writing like perfection forevermore.

Reminds me of the journey setting up my first Noodler's flex pen 😄.

 

Had a minor version of this issue with my TWBI Eco stub that I never quite managed to tinker right. Gave up and bunged a bock fine in there this week and it works like a charm, thankfully.

 

Have ordered some brass shim for a proper tinker with the 2k so fingers crossed. Can now add KWZ Honey to the "miracles it into working perfectly" list. What is it about honey coloured inks that seems to give so many of them pen whisperer powers? I have a feeling El Dorado will do the same thing, something in the viscosity and lubrication.

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ScarletWoodland

Happy update on this. Lamy got back to me but thankfully I didn't need them in the end. The brass shim did the job perfectly, so it looks like it was a tiny fibre or similar stuck in there, paired with a slightly dry flow.

 

It's writing wet and glorious now, thanks guys 👍.

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MuddyWaters

Awesome! When reading the thread, I couldn't help but think of the 2000's uniquely shaped nib. The nib is like a square block at the end that spreads out ink. That makes it look "wet" by nature to some people, but there isn't that much ink getting layered as much as it is spread across the block nib surface.

 

I had weird lines coming from different inks. Some very lubricated inks allowed me to write even if I was angled off the sweet spot. When they were in the sweet spot, I often found those inks too slippery. Drier inks required me to be right on the sweet spot to get a decent amount of ink going, but if there wasn't a bit of additional pressure, this phenomenon occured also.

 

Glad it has worked out in the end. The Lamy 2000 is a classic pen that has interesting nib characteristics.

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ScarletWoodland

Awesome! When reading the thread, I couldn't help but think of the 2000's uniquely shaped nib. The nib is like a square block at the end that spreads out ink. That makes it look "wet" by nature to some people, but there isn't that much ink getting layered as much as it is spread across the block nib surface.

 

I had weird lines coming from different inks. Some very lubricated inks allowed me to write even if I was angled off the sweet spot. When they were in the sweet spot, I often found those inks too slippery. Drier inks required me to be right on the sweet spot to get a decent amount of ink going, but if there wasn't a bit of additional pressure, this phenomenon occured also.

 

Glad it has worked out in the end. The Lamy 2000 is a classic pen that has interesting nib characteristics.

It is a fascinating nib and has such an unusual, smoooooth gentle feedback. I had a little bit of sweet spot, rotation trouble with drier, very saturated inks (the kind that feel sticky in a dry pen, you know?) before I flossed it but fingers crossed, no trouble since. I'd want to test an extra fine before forking out though, as this chunky medium is a lot more forgiving 😄.

 

The ergonomics have really grown on me since it's been flowing more freely too. I've found it the easiest pen to wrangle first thing in the morning, when my hands can't quite remember how to hand.

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