inksmudge.net

Introducing Pen Addict Memberships — Pen Addict

06.01.2016 01:00

```text Brad Dowdy: ```

```text

My decision to do this did not come lightly. I quit my day job – a job I have held for the majority of the past 15 years – because I believe in this site, I believe in the readers, and I want to continue spreading the stationery word. It would be an honor if you would consider supporting me and The Pen Addict as I take this on full time. Along with Nock Co., I am all in on analog and am comitting myself to this world and to you.

```

```text Finally! I’m going to sign up as soon as I can. A great way to support a fantastic site. ```

Lamy Imporium in Black and Gold

06.01.2016 01:00

```text Susan M. Pigott: ```

```text

When I first saw shots of the Lamy Imporium, I was mesmerized. I loved the guilloche patterns, the clean lines of the cap, and the nib–oh, that nib! The black exterior with the gold center was just too cool. Then I saw the price. $520 for a Lamy? No way. Plus, initially I was told the pen wouldn’t be sold in the US (that turned out to be incorrect). I quietly resigned myself to no Lamy Imporium.

```

```text I’m usually not into anything gold, if you get what I mean, but the Imporium looks very good. I think Lamy pens are the best, and I really love how their nibs feel and how they look; especially the high end models. ```

```text But I don’t get why they can’t make a cheap pen like the Safari without that ridiculous moulded grip section. ```

My review of the Hobonichi Planner.

06.01.2016 01:00

```text I started using my new 2016 Hobonichi Planner almost a week ago, this review have been on the list for a while now. One month, at least. ```

```text The story of how I ended up with the Hobonichi Planner starts in the middle of January, when I realized that my digital calendar system didn’t work at all. So, I conducted a small experiment for the remaining two and half weeks of January where I used a Field Notes to emulate a planner. The experiment worked pretty well. So I spent the next week looking into various alternatives. ```

```text I had three requirements: ```

```text
  • It had to work with fountain pens
  • It had to have a variety of layouts for different kinds of planning.
  • It had to be compact.
  • ```

    ```text I looked at everything from Moleskine to Filofax to Hobonichi. The reason I went with the Hobonichi was mostly because I had it on good authority that it was fountain pen friendly and that it looked like a product designed by someone who uses a planner, and not just threw something together the last minute. ```

    ```text My opinion after using it for ten months is that this is the best planner out there for most people. It has what more or less everyone needs, and it does what it does very well. ```

    ```text The paper handles fountain pen ink very well, I have never seen any bleed through since I started using it. But the dry time is brutally slow. It isn’t a big problem for me, even though I write with my left hand. But paper that dried faster would be very welcome. ```

    ```text Let’s move on to the various pages you get in the book. ```

    ```text
  • Yearly Calendar
  • Yearly Index
  • Monthly Calendar
  • Coming Up!
  • Daily Pages
  • Memo pages.
  • ```

    ```text This means that you have places for more or less everything you need. I’m not going to get into how I use it, here, that will be a part of my larger Getting Things Done post, that I’m going to write soon. But you have a place for the large overview: Yearly Index. You have a place for the details: Daily Pages. And you have a place for your monthly goals: Coming Up. ```

    ```text The format of the Hobonichi Planner is very compact, while you at the same time have a lot of room. And it isn’t often I wish there was more room. But there is a larger version, it is, unfortunately only available in Japanese. I have three wishes for the 2017 version: ```

    ```text
  • Shorter drying time.
  • Having all the versions available in English.
  • Different start dates, like the Japanese version have.
  • ```

    Review

    06.01.2016 01:00

    ```text Alt. Haven:: ```

    ```text

    Conclusion:
    The TWSBI Eco, Eco short for Economical, is a value for money piston filler fountain pen. If you are looking to dip your toes into the world of piston filling fountain pens, the TWSBI Eco is a great place to start. I wouldn’t recommend the TWSBI Eco to be a starter fountain pen. It might be a little overwhelming for a beginner to learn how to service a piston filler if they came from the world of disposable ballpoint pens.

    ```

    ```text The TWSBI Eco is very interesting product. I’m not sure if it is a hit or a miss. I wouldn’t recommend it as a beginners pen. I think the Pilot Metropolitan is a very good beginners pen because it is cheap and you just pop in cartridges and write. ```

    ```text You have a good pen you paid around $15 for, and you like fountain pens, and want to test out some more inks. You could either buy a converter for less than $2 or find another pen. You could either buy a pen in the same price range, or save a little bit more and get a much better pen for $60 dollars instead of the $29 the Eco costs. ```

    ```text The reason I’m not sure if it is a hit or a miss is that I don’t think a piston filler is for the beginner market. So the only places I can imagine that this pen has a market is for people on a tight budget, or if you want to just have some good and cheap pens. For example laying around at work where it wouldn’t be too bad if a few of them disappeared. ```

    What I Use

    06.01.2016 01:00

    ```text Fountain Pen Quest: ```

    ```text

    As you may know the Hobonichi uses fountain pen friendly Tomoeo River paper. I used fountain pen exclusively. The paper is thin and while bleed through isn’t a problem there’s some show-through. In general show-through never bothers me and I regularly use both sides of any paper. With my thin nibs the show-through is there but minimal with the Hobionichi. What does bother me is the time it takes for ink to dry on this paper. I cut a piece of blotter paper to fit the Techo and place between the pages. In addition to making my current page easy to fine it keeps the ink from transferring to the facing page when I close the book. Sure, I could wait for the ink to dry but that would require patience. Plus, it provides a bit of a cushion to write on if I’m using a hard thin nib that might leave an imprint on the page below the one I’m writing on.

    ```

    ```text Yeah, the dry time is painful, but that is also the only problem I have with the Hobonichi. ```

    Why I Love Steel Nibs – The Pen Addict

    06.01.2016 01:00

    ```text Brad Dowdy: ```

    ```text

    The first thing you should be aware of with steel nibs is that, in general, they are stiffer than their gold counterparts. Makes sense, right? Gold is a softer material, so that translates to a softer nib. Standard gold nibs have some bounce or springiness when writing. Steel nibs are firm without much give. This holds true for the full range of nib sizes too. Extra fine to broad all exhibit the same general behavior.

    ```

    ```text Finally someone bringing this up. My personal opinion is that they are both good, and have equally good properties. I personally prefer to write with a gold nib. But I think my hand writing look better when I write with a steel nib. ```

    2015 in review

    31.12.2015 01:00

    I officially launched this site a month and a half ago. The progress up until now have gone beyond any hope or expectation.

    Brad Dowdy of The Pen Addict mentioned the site on ”>Ink Love from Ana from The Well Appointed Desk yesterday.

    The result is that, a lot more people are subscribing and visiting the site. I don’t really care too much about that, the thing I care about is that people I admire and respect actually like what I have started doing over here.

    I can’t wait to start the new year, and to publish some of the stuff I have been working on for a very long long time.

    Hovonichi Planner 2016

    28.12.2015 01:00

    ```text My second Hobonichi Planner arrived almost a week ago. The choice this time around was much easier than it was in February last year, when I decided to get a paper planner. I think I spent two weeks looking at every single alternative available, before I went for the Hobonichi. ```

    ```text I’m going to write a proper review as soon as I get around to it. But there are not many new things in the 2016 versus the 2015 edition. The dates and so on have been updated, the other big thing is that it now features serial numbers. ```

    ```text It is a great planner. My advice is the following: go for the Hobonichi if you are looking for either a planner or a journal, but aren’t sure what to get. It has 99% of what 99% of people need or want. ```

    ```text It is the thing that keeps my live together. There will be a post about my GTD system very soon. ```

    On Keeping A Notebook

    27.12.2015 01:00

    ```text Laurel Keck: ```

    ```text

    I’ve been keeping a notebook for over 14 years, and one of the main things I’ve learned is that your notebook is exactly what you put into it. If you pour yourself into it, it will be a patchwork quilt of your life, thoughts and ideas. A timeline of your progress as an artist, a writer, and as a human. The more you use your notebook, the more it will become an automatic response, rather than a deliberate one. Something happens or you have something to remember? Make it a habit to jot it down, and it’ll become a part of the story your notebook is telling (which is of course your story being told and drawn as it happens).

    There is only one rule to how you need to use your notebook, and that it that there are no rules. Accidently draw a terrible drawing? Great! Now turn the page and try another one; the only way to get better is keep going. Leave those drawings alone. There will be a time when you look back at these early drawings with embarrassment, and then later on you will look back at them with a sense of pride at how far you’ve come. You’ll remember the things you felt when you made those drawings, then you’ll work on a new thing.

    ```

    The Midori Travelers Notebook

    27.12.2015 01:00

    ![](https://static1.squarespace.com/static/560ec734e4b0d6edef0fcf6d/560ec965e4b023d2c257ab18/56803c8ac21b864703108b63/1451244795214/20151227-IMG_1618.jpg)</p>
    
    
    
    <p>
    
      <img src="https://i2.wp.com/static1.squarespace.com/static/560ec734e4b0d6edef0fcf6d/560ec965e4b023d2c257ab18/56803c8aa128e603baa2bed7/1451244793193/20151227-IMG_1619.jpg?w=1040" alt="" data-recalc-dims="1" />
    
    </p>
    

    ```text The MTN have been on the top of my wish list for a long time. I remember wanting one, when I started to get into fountain pens almost three years ago. But I didn’t have the money for at the time, and forgot about it. Until I saw a blog post with a picture of one, earlier this year. Which made me move it to the top of my list. ```

    ```text I think that there are room for more than one size of notebooks for most people. But what people need is very individual. My personal preference is to have three different sizes, plus a planner. ```

    ```text
  • Field Notes(or anything in the “passport” size would work) for tasks, and short notes.
  • Large A4(similar to the letter size in the US) notebooks, preferably with many hundred sheets for journaling, studying and taking notes at home, in meetings and during lectures / seminars.
  • The thing in between. Field Notes are a excellent tool for keeping track of tasks, and to write down stuff you need to remember. But they are too small to be efficient when it comes to either journal, writing or taking notes. The huge A4 notebooks are great, but they are heavy, and is therefore not something I want to bring everywhere. I have found the MTN to be the perfect thing in between the two.
  • ```

    ```text Format. I have tried many different notebooks formats over the years. My personal preference is as stated above: a pocket sized for capture and organising tasks and projects; the biggest notebook I can get my hands on for hardcore studying or writing; and the thing in between for when you want to write a little bit when waiting, or traveling, or just want to get a beer and write a little bit. ```

    ```text The format of the regular version of the MTN is perfect for this. You have enough room on the page, while you still at the same time have a format that is compact enough that you can fit it in the inner pocket of a winter jacket or you can put it in your bag without noticing it. ```

    ```text Flexible. The thing that really sold my on the MTN was how flexible the system is. Mine is currently extended to have three refills(lined) and a pen holder. ```

    ```text One thing that always drive me nuts with various other notebooks I have used, for example the Field Notes Arts and Sciences Edition is that: I usually need lined paper, that is 90% of the time, but there are times where blank or grid paper is nice; I like to have the option, but to alternate between the two of them doesn’t really solve anything. ```

    ```text This is the cool thing about MTN. You can fill it with one blank, one lined and one grid refill if you want to. Or two lined and one blank. Or you might want a planner refill. You have many first party option, including pockets and all kinds of other cool and weird stuff. ```

    ```text And a added benefit of the flexibility of having different kinds of refills is that you can alter the content of your MTN as needed. ```

    ```text Paper. The paper quality of the refills are excellent. I haven’t seen any bleed through or feathering this far.That includes writing with my Lamy 2000, and that pen is a wet mother fucker. I have written in it with both my Lamy 2000 and my TWSBI 580AL(medium nib on both) with Pilot Iroshizuku Take-sumi and it takes a few seconds to dry. One of the advantages with the narrow page width is that you don’t have to move your hand that much back and forth. ```

    ```text My only problem with the current line up of refills for the MTN is that I wish they had more than one lined refill. Some people like tiny lines, some like something in between, and some of us like bigger lines. ```

    ```text Design. There isn’t much to say about the design; you have four options: black or brown leather; passport or regular size. The thing I like about it is that it is as simple as you can get away with. It looks cool and works great. ```

    ```text Number of refills versus writing comfort. A MTN have two bands that you can use to attach refills. This means that you can extend it to hold up to six(!!!) refills, if you buy the pack of rubber bands. I have tried using it with different configuration during the weekend to find out what the ideal thing is for me. ```

    ```text Six refills are too much in my opinion. The sweet spot in my experience is two, but I think it looks much better with three. So, three it is. ```

    ```text Conclusion. I think it is a fantastic notebook, and it will without doubt be something I bring everywhere from now on. It is the thing I just grab when I want to write something. ```

    ```text The next thing on my list is to find some extra accessories to make it even more useful. I’ll write more about it when I publish a follow up to this post about how it was to travel with it. ```