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The Unsharpen Editorial Team handles writing and curation for Unsharpen.com. This includes writing most articles, writing pen, paper, etc. reviews, and building out the site's data catalog.

You can learn more about the team at the Youtube channel, as well as watch the catalog of over 500 video reviews and guides with over 10 million collective views, which will give you some insight into our pen expertise and our 20+ year history geeking out about pens, pencils, and paper.

Have a question? Reach out and a team member will get back to you.

The Parts Of Wooden Pencil

One of the odd things about the pen and pencil world is that these are tools people use every day but they often lack the vocabulary to describe what they are using. After all, technical discussion of pens and pencils doesn’t exactly come up very often in normal human interaction.

With the goal of aiding your talk about wooden pencils, here is the anatomy of a wooden pencil explained.

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Can You Make Fountain Pen Ink At Home?

Fountain pen ink might seem like a some kind of mythical substance that can only be made through some sort of alchemy, but that’s not the case. At the very heart of it, fountain pen ink is simply a loose, watery ink that is compatible with a pen’s nib. And while there is certainly lots of craft and innovation and chemistry involved in professional inks, there are simpler forms that anyone can make.
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The Best Mechanical Pencil Leads of 2021

Mechanical pencil lead might seem like it’s the same from brand to brand, but the graphites are actually quite varied. Some brands use better lead than others and even sell high-end aftermarket lead separately from their pencils.

Think of mechanical pencil lead like a pen refill: the one that is included with your pencil might be fine, but it isn’t the only one you can use and it probably isn’t the best one available!

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Lamy Fountain Pen Nib Buying Guide

Lamy Fountain Pen Nibs

Lamy’s standarized fountain pen nibs aren’t particularly complex, but there are some basics concepts to know if you want to get the most out of them. Additionally, there are some long lists of details you might want to refer to that aren’t worth memorizing but will help you with your purchase.

This article will help you get your head around Lamy’s steel and gold fountain pen nibs.

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The Best Parker-style Gel Refills For Your Pen

A popular change to make to a pen is to swap out the included ballpoint refill for a smooth-flowing gel one. Gel refills are quite popular these days because they write well, the ink looks great, and they are fun to use. Ballpoints have these uses of course, but if you are predominantly writing paper and don’t need the versatility of a ballpoint, gel can be the way to go.

So what are the best gel refills in the Parker-style G2 shape?

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Pen Refills Guide

Pen refills come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Some of these are standards, shared across pen brands and decades of pen designs, while other are propriety and limited to just a few brands or even a few models. This means that replacing the ink in a pen, especially an older one, may end up being a more difficult task than you’d expect.

The goal of this article is to make buying a new ink refill for your pen as easy as possible. A secondary goal to this guide will be maximizing the number of refill options available for each pen. This is only possible once you have a good understanding of refill shapes and which are interchangeable.

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The Best Stationery Shops in New York City

New York City is a dream for shoppers of all kinds, but it really isn’t a stationery town. Compared to the cities of Europe or even some smaller college towns New York City’s stationery shops are few and far between, and dedicated pen shops are even rarer. What’s worse is that many of the longstanding places, like Pearl Paint’s iconic Canal Street location, have been closing.

Things aren’t all bad though, NYC still has some of the nation’s top stationery destinations.

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On The Sharpie S-Gel’s Popularity

Sharpie S-Gel Sleek Metal Body

The Sharpie S-Gel is a relatively new gel pen that was first released in early 2020. Sharpie, being known for its permanent markers, has produced pens for some time, but those have mostly been fiber-tipped, marker-like pens. These pens, which are essentially just thin Sharpie markers, developed a solid following, they were simply an extension of the Sharpie marker’s popularity.

And then came the S-Gel.

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How To Make Your Own Pen Flush For Cleaning Fountain Pens

Cleaning a fountain pen is best done with warm water and a few extremely affordable tools, but stubborn inks and vintage pens with dried ink can require a tougher cleaner. In this case you might be tempted to buy a pen flush, like the popular Monteverde Fountain Pen Flush. I’ve certainly bought my share of pen flush liquids, but it’s worth knowing that you can make your own as well.

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