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Pens and Pencils | Reviews and Data

Platinum Fountain Pen Buying Guide

Platinum 3776 Century

Platinum is one of Japan’s “Big Three” pen companies, but it doesn’t seem to get the same level of attention as the other two, at least in the United States. Despite that, Platinum makes some of our favorite fountain pens.

If you are considering buying a Platinum fountain pen which should you lean towards? Which are sure-fire hits that no one can deny is a great pen? Read on to find out.

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Ink Types Guide

Pelikan 4001 Ink

When you start to dig into pens just a little bit you’ll see that they are separated ink a few major varieties based on the type of ink they use. These categories are blurry and ultimately not very well defined, but it’s helpful to know the basics about them so you have some idea of what you are buying. This guide will run through the major types of inks in order to help you get a better understanding of the major types of pens, how they write, why you might prefer one over the others, and the best uses for each.

Don’t miss our Pen Refills Guide so you can learn about the types of refills these inks go into.

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Hobonichi 2020: Everything You Want To Know

Think about it, 2020 is just around the corner. The signs are all around you! Maybe that Hobonichi Tech0 Avec half-year journal is already starting to look a little broken in, or your 2019 Hobonichi Cousin is looking a little bit aged. Or, you know, maybe it’s just cooling down (or heating up) a little bit outside, depending on where you live.

It’s August, which means the Hobonichi 2020 lineup is just weeks away.

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What Fountain Pen Does Neil Gaiman Use?

Lamy 2000 Fountain Pen

Neil Gaiman, author of American Gods, Norse Mythology, The Graveyard Book, and many other titles is a dedicated fountain pen user. He’s talked publicly about his love of fountain pens many times, so with some research it wasn’t too hard to figure out what he’s been using over the years. He famously handwrites the first draft of his books using a fountain pen and then later edits them.

Gaiman, in 2012, mentioned that he has had between 40 and 60 pens, so this list will not be in any way complete but we’ll cover the pens he has talked about publicly.

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Sailor Fountain Pen Buying Guide

Sailor 1911 Fountain Pen

Choosing a fountain pen isn’t always an easy task and a surplus of information can be almost as bad as a total lack of information. With that in mind this guide is designed to help you choose a Sailor fountain pen. Sailor isn’t is common as Pilot, Platinum, and a few other competitors here in the US, but they make some really exceptional pens.

This guide will help you decide the right Sailor fountain pen for any buyer at any price level in 2019. We’ll be focusing on the most popular Sailor lines, with the assumption that if you are looking for something expensive or rare, you probably don’t need a buying guide!

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Fisher AG7 vs CH4 Space Pen: What’s the Difference?

Are you trying to choose between the Fisher AG7 and CH4 space pens? They look so much alike, but there are some differences in shape and price that makes then quite different when in use. So how do you choose? This article will help you tell the difference between these two pens and to find that one that’s right for you.

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The Best Pens and Pencils for Adult Coloring Books – July 2019

Adult coloring books have moved from being a quirky fad to being a real thing. A real, relaxing, nothing-to-be-embarassed about thing… and we fully endorse them. If you want to relax and do some art, with none of the stress of painting or figuring out what to draw, a coloring book can be the perfect way to zone out and destress.

So what are the best pens and pencils, and whatever else, for your coloring book?

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Pen Refills Guide

Pen refills adhere to ISO standard 12757 and the later revision ISO 12757-1:2017. This isn’t something that’s mandatory — custom and proprietary refills certainly aren’t illegal — but for practical purposes if you are making a certain refill type, it makes sense that yours is the same dimensions as that of all the other makers.

The standard has two main components: one for general use and one for “documentary use,” basically a stricter standard. This latter application is ISO 12757-2, and it would cover the legibility of letters as well as writing for archival documents.

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ISO Drafting Pencil Color-Coding Guide

Did you ever notice that your drafting pencils have different color text printed on them? You might not know this, but those colors aren’t randomly assigned. The color-coding applies to mechanical pencils, but also to drafting pens, like the Rotring Isograph/Rapidograph, and was popularly seen on professional tools but not so much on consumer-focused items.

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Fountain Pen Help: What is a Music Nib?

Pilot Custom 74 Fountain Pen

If you have been learning about fountain pens and have dug deep enough to get into the world of specialty nibs, perhaps you have come across the term “music nib.” After some immediate confusion perhaps you took a guess and figured out it’s a nib for writing musical notes… or is it a nib that produces wonderful music as you write? Just kidding — it’s definitely the former — but what does that mean in practice? What is a music nib and why might you want to own one?

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