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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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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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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When buying a pen you will encounter many of the same words each type you buy. The number one thing you should be looking out fo– so you know what to expect from the pen — is the type of ink. Two popular and often confused types are ballpoint and gel ink.
So what’s the difference between ballpoint and gel pens?
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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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Ever been handed a Tul pen or found one at the office and asked yourself, what kind of pen is this? Who makes Tul pens? Where do I buy Tul pens?
It happened to me and I know other people have had the same questions. So, what’s the deal with Tul pens?
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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?
Continue reading “The Best Parker-style Gel Refills For Your Pen”
If you have been in the market for a nicer fountain pen (or at least researching them) then you have almost certainly encountered a material known as ebonite. But what exactly is ebonite, and why are the pens made from it so expensive?
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Ranga fountain pens might have been relatively unknown in the United States a few years ago, but this pen brand has been increasingly popular and these, popping up on Reddit and pen review sites with surprisingly regularity.
So who are Ranga Pens, what do they make, and that’s the deal with this company?
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Unsharpen.com has a vast trove of pen and pencil data, which gives the site a unique overview of trending writing instruments. While the archive is non-exhaustive and its reach is limited by the site’s own popularity, there are always some good takeaways from any look into our data.
Continue reading “Pens and Pencils of Note – February 2021”
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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Many people see fountain pens as occasional writing instruments, maybe for doing some journaling or writing a letter, but that doesn’t have to be the case. The right fountain pen can be a great everyday tool, even if it never approaches the tool-like functionality of a ballpoint pen.
Continue reading “How To Choose An Everyday Fountain Pen (And Some Recommendations)”
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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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.
Continue reading “On The Sharpie S-Gel’s Popularity”
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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