Fountain pens are great, but the cleaning is, to put it lightly, a chore. Maintaining and caring for fountain pens takes time, and even if you don’t baby your pens their water-based ink still runs out more quickly than a ballpoint or rollerball. Want to change ink color? That requires a cleaning too.
So cleaning comes with the territory, but what’s the right way to do it?
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LIY or “Live In You” is an under-the-radar pen company, but they make a few interesting products. Maybe you’ve stumbled upon them on Ebay or in discussions about Chinese fountain pens, but you probably didn’t make a purchase without knowing a bit more about the brand. This article should help!
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Ever been handed a Tul pen or found one at the office and asked yourself, what kind of pen is this? It happened to me and other people have had the same question. So, what’s the deal with Tul pens?
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The Parker 51 is one of the most famous pens of all time. Even today, over 50 years after this fountain pen first went on sale, the pen is sought after by collectors and mint models can go for hundreds of dollars. The Parker 21 looks almost exactly like the Parker 51, but sells for a fraction of the amount.
What’s the difference between these two vintage fountain pens?
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The Rotring Newton is often confused with the older, more desirable Rotring 600. Both are great pens and they are remarkably alike, but they are distinctly different models and while the Newton echoes the design of the 600 it is not a Rotring 600. Sorry to say it, but there is no “Rotring Newton 600,” that’s just something people write in auctions.
Does any of this matter though? Are we just splitting hairs? Or is there a real difference between the Rotring 600 and the Newton pens. Let’s find out.
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Converting a fountain pen to an eyedropper is a quick and fun job, so long as you choose the right pen! It’s quick to do, quite cheap, and you can often double or even triple your ink capacity.
Continue reading “Best Fountain Pens for Eyedropper Conversion (And How To Do It)”
If you are shopping for a very affordable — as in sub-$20, sub-$10, or even sub-$5 — fountain pen and you want high-end features like screw-on cap, included converter, or piston-filling mechanism then you are shopping for a Chinese fountain pen. Brands like Wing Sung and Jinhao offer incredible value for the money, but do have some shortcomings that we don’t expect from standard fountain pen purchases.
These Chinese fountain pens are very affordable, but they don’t have websites with clear explanations and offer don’t come from vendors we know and trust. Plus that often have very slow shipping times (sometimes 2-4 weeks to the US) so remembering what you bought can be an issue. It was with those challenges in mind that we set up this top Chinese fountain pens of 2019 roundup.
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Lamy makes a few different fountain pen converters and it’s not always clear which one you should buy. Lamy doesn’t offer much guidance on this, but don’t worry, it’s easy to figure out which one you need.
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Few people would argue that one of the main draws to fountain pens is the amazing variety of inks on offer. This selection can quickly go from an allure to a curse when the paradox of choice sets in and you are presented with literally hundreds of shades of blue, all of which are relatively affordable and easy to access.
If you don’t quit fountain pens right at that moment you are presented with an interesting dilemma: how can I test inks? Taking things to their logical conclusion, we here at Unsharpen further asked, “How can we test fountain pens inks cheaply, efficiently, and accurately?”
Here’s what we’ve found…
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One popular question we get with people who are interested in pen mechanics is: Do any rollerballs use fountain pen ink? The answer is yes, but fewer than you’d expect. Here are a list of some of the top rollerballs that can be filled with fountain pen ink.
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If you have ever written on a receipt you’ll know that it’s a particularly annoying surface. Receipts have a combination in slippery paper and a small surface area that is quite a challenge. In fact many pen types will completely unacceptable with receipt paper. So what pen should you get for filling out your tip, total, and signature?
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Pilot’s Iroshizuku is a line of high quality fountain pen inks. They are some of the best priced, best performing inks sold today, but with 24 inks in the line it’s hard to try them all.
Well, we bought all the inks and are going to review the full family below, with commentary on each of the 24 Pilot Iroshizuku fountain pen inks.
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There is a good chance that some time in the past year you’ve run into a pen made by Kaco. Despite a general unfamiliarity with the company, they are been making many rather good pens lately.
So… who is Kaco, where are they based, what’s their website? We had many questions and wanted to learn the basics about this pen company, whose pens we’ve been enjoying for some time now.
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You’ve almost certainly heard of Moleskine notebooks, and you probably have owned at least a few of them, but have you spent any time learning about the company behind this iconic paper product?
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Zebra’s Emulsion ink is a bit of an enigma. Most companies neatly categorize their inks ink “ballpoint,” “gel,” and “rollerball” and some even throw in “hybrid” but Zebra ended up with “emulsion.” Does that mean something specific? Is it a translation quirk or brand name? Let’s dig into it a bit.
Continue reading “What Is Zebra’s Emulsion Ink?”