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Who should use fountain pen?

January 13, 2023 10 min read

Who should use fountain pen?

When I used to write, I always used rollerball pens with the brand Onyx. Not only was I a complete addict, but I also had this obsessive compulsive disorder in which I required a new one to be in my possession at all times. Using these pens, I would write in clean block letters on eye-ease paper, which was one of my favorite ways to take notes. To summarize, I was losing out on something.

Keyboards are used for a significant portion of our writing processes these days. Even when I was a student carrying around those God-awful rollerballs, I would take my notes home at the end of the day and write them up on my computer. I make the most of my living writing these days, and especially during the pandemic, and in order to do it, I need to utilize a keyboard since I am either working in a screenplay format in Final Draft or I am writing in a Google Doc for a client's review.

Both of these forms of communication are valid, but there is something special about the way one's thoughts flow when they are recorded in a blank notebook with a writing implement. To put it simply, it's not the same as banging away at a keyboard. There is a difference that can be felt in the gut, a quality that is ingrained very deeply in the mind.

I use notebooks for all of my brainstorming sessions. I have a large number of boxes full of them, some of which date back decades. I find it helpful to write out my thoughts in longhand on paper. Perhaps a portion of this is attributable to the seven years that I spent obtaining a formal education in art, or perhaps it's just something that everyone goes through. I can't say. My point of view is that writing should not be a laborious activity. Writing by hand using a pen ought to be a pleasurable experience for the writer. Because of this, I prefer to write using fountain pens.

What factors led to the decline in popularity of the fountain pen?

First, a brief bit of history. Fountain pens have only been around for a very short period of time. They didn't appear on the scene until the latter half of the 1800s. The first ones were what we now refer to as "eye-dropper pens," which had to be properly filled with ink using an eye-dropper, and those pens spilled like crazy. The second type of pen was what we now refer to as a "ballpoint pen," which was much more reliable. It wasn't until the very late 1890s that pens with internal bladders were first developed, and by the late 20th century, there were many different kinds of devices for storing ink, such as pistons, vacuums, sacks, cartridges, and so on.

fountain pen is on a desk.

The fact that ballpoint pens were more convenient than fountain pens contributed to their rise to prominence in the 1950s and 1960s. This was one of the reasons why fountain pens fell out of favor during this time period. To begin, fountain pens are more sensitive to variations in the air pressure than other writing instruments. If you board an airplane with a loaded fountain pen (of most but not all varieties) and there is an air bubble in the ink reservoir that formed at sea level, then when the plane is pressurized, the bubble will expand and force ink out of the nib. This is what this means from a practical sense.

If you don't uncap your pen and hold it vertically for a few minutes before takeoff and until the "ding" goes off in the cabin (the sign that the plane is fully pressurized), you could end up with a pen that seems fine, but has a ton of ink that is only being held back from your trousers by the cap. Vacuum-type fountain pens solve this problem, but the vast majority of others are still susceptible to it. Vacuum-type fountain pens are

One more reason why fountain pens aren't always the finest writing equipment is because the majority of the inks used in fountain pens aren't permanent. You may sign a check with a Bic ballpoint and be confident that the ink won't be readily removed, whereas the ink from the majority of fountain pen pens is not as secure.

This issue is resolved by the production of many different "bulletproof" fountain pen inks by the Noodler's brand. Because these inks are difficult to remove, even with a laser, it is unlikely that anyone will try to alter your checks. Using these means, of course, that your pen had best not have any leaks in it!

Female hand writing in notebook with pen.

Last but not least, there's the rationale of the Space Pen: writing with a fountain pen requires you to do it on a table or any other kind of horizontal surface. It is possible to write in any environment, including upside down, underwater, or in space, with a pressurized pen like a Space Pen (duh).

What are the advantages of using a fountain pen?

In all likelihood, the vast majority of the instances in which you will need to jot down some notes, you won't require the use of a space pen. You can acquire ink that does not dry up for your fountain pen if you find that you frequently require it. Even now, fountain pens serve a number of useful purposes.

In contrast to a ballpoint pen, a fountain pen does not require the user to apply pressure to the writing tip in order to transfer ink to the paper. This is the primary advantage of using a fountain pen. This indicates that you do not need to press the nib into the paper like you would when using a pencil or a ballpoint and that you should not do so. When you write with a fountain pen, it requires less work from your hand, and you won't become as tired of writing as quickly as you would with other writing implements. You won't suffer from writer's cramp no matter how many pages you write. It is a startling discovery.

When you find a fountain pen that you truly enjoy, it's not like a disposable pen that might get discontinued or upgraded in a few years; rather, it's something that you can use for decades if you choose to do so. Fountain pens are often very comfortable in the hand as well. Fountain pens are pens that allow you to preserve the characteristics that you enjoy and switch out the characteristics that you find uninteresting. This is possible because the inks and nibs can be replaced. Are you sick of using black ink? Test out some purple ink. Or iron gall ink. Or red ink. Or ink with glitter in it. Do you want a wide nib? You only need to purchase one and attach it to your pen. Do you need a nib for your calligraphy pen? You have the option to buy one of those as well.

The sheer volume of writing that I do by hand has compelled me to take a serious look at the appearance of my handwriting. My old-fashioned block letters are kept for use on the envelopes of outgoing mail these days. Even though I'm no calligraphy, I find that writing in longhand (script, for you philistines) is far more interesting and fun to do, not to mention impressive to those you choose to write to by snail mail. I do the majority of my writing in this format. When I first read my script, I was under the impression that it was terrible, but the reality is that I was simply out of practice.

Moleskin notebook with fountain pen
The more someone appreciates a certain activity, the greater the likelihood that they will take part in it. When I first started using fountain pens, I used to spend far less time writing by hand than I do now. Increased creative production is the effect of engaging in this technique. When I have to type something, like a screenplay or something similar, I find that I am much more prepared for the keyboard stage than I would have been otherwise. This is simply due to the fact that my mental attention and creative output have been so much greater than they were previously.

Aren't fountain pens expensive?

Both yes and no And no. Prices for fountain pens aimed for beginners range anywhere from ten to twenty dollars. I was a huge fan of the numerous Parker Vector fountain pens that I had and used. In spite of the fact that I only sometimes use them, I still have a few working samples in my collection. The trouble with Parker pens is that they use a proprietary cartridge, and its inkwell adaptor is terrible. As a result, if you wish to write with other inks, you will most likely need to hunt for pens made by a different manufacturer. Additionally, the hat clips have little arrowheads on them, and these arrowheads rip up the pocket in which you put them, making it difficult to carry them around in your favorite blazer.

After using only Parker inks for a while, I decided it was time to experiment with other brands of ink and nibs with more character. I purchased a Conklin "Mark Twain" crescent-filler, which was so named after the original celebrity sponsorship of the product. This crescent-filler is a treat, and it cost me less than a cent at the time I purchased it.

The Pilot 823, the Pilot 742, and the Conklin All-American are the three fountain pens that I use most often, even though I have a small but decent collection of fountain pens, which includes a Montblanc. The price of these pens ranges from $300 to just $50, and considering that they are all designed to last a lifetime and can be refilled, the initial investment is actually much less than what one would make in numerous boxes of ballpoint or rollerball pens.

Since you are the type of person who would read anything like this, I will begin with an expensive one.

My Pilot Custom 823 Pilot 823

This was the most costly fountain pen that I bought brand new, and it has proven to be the most reliable. The one I have has a medium-sized nib with an iridium ball, and it writes nicely, albeit with no change in the size of the lines it produces. It has an understated appearance, but because the barrel is see-through, it is possible to gauge how much ink is contained within it. The fact that it features a vacuum filling mechanism and a large ink reservoir are the two aspects that stand out the most to me as reasons to like it.


The ink level in the reservoir of the 832 can be seen in this shot, which was taken with a strong light shining behind it.
The usage of a vacuum filler is not only entertaining, but it also demonstrates a high level of ingenuity. Because the filling mechanism of a vacuum pen turns off the feed when it is not in use, there is no way for ink to get out of the pen while it is not being used. This allows the pen to be left unused for lengthy periods of time without the ink running out or drying out. Second, because of this similar property, vacuum pens won't leak owing to the fluctuations in air pressure that occur in flights, as long as you don't remove them from your possession while you're in the air with them. When I go by airplane, I always make sure to have this pen with me because it is safe to store in my carry-on bag while I am in flight.
The pen can be purchased in the United States with regular nib sizes, however one dealer in Japan sells it with a flexible nib for an additional cost. The total cost of the pen is approximately $300. Due to the fact that I desired the US warranty more than anything else, I purchased the version with the medium nib from Goulet Pens in the United States of America.

Businessman writing on a sheet of white

This pen is believed to be of higher quality than others, and it comes with both a bottle of ink and a gorgeous display box. I've tried a lot of other pens that were more expensive, but I like this one the best. Its system for refilling is ingenious and convenient. In addition, because the nib is not flexible, it will always write when I need it to regardless of the circumstances. It's a lot of fun to write with flexible nibs, but if you want to write rapidly, you could run into some issues with them. For this reason, having a normal sort of nib is actually a blessing.

This pen is not an 823, despite the fact that it looks very much like an 823. Due to the fact that it is a JDM product, I was unable to purchase one with a guarantee; still, it is without a doubt the greatest pen for everyone. It utilizes standard Pilot cartridges, which are readily available almost anywhere. Because it is compatible with the largest cartridge converter that Pilot has, a vacuum filler, one may use it with virtually any kind of ink, and the converter makes it simple to clean when switching between different colors of ink. A word regarding the converter: unlike the other vacuum filler, this one cannot be sealed off, which means that it will leak on an airplane just like any other regular fountain pen that uses cartridges.



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