Want to know our tips & tricks?
As a little bonus to our series on writing instruments, we thought of giving you a bunch of related tips and tricks. You may have wondered at times, what is the best way to store this pen? Or, what do I do when my pen is clogged?
We've also created a game for you to play to reinforce what you may have picked up from this series. Keep scrolling to check all of it out...
- When in doubt, store your pens horizontally.
- Try to avoid storing pens with the tip facing up since this makes ink run to the bottom of the pen and creates air pockets in the refill or cartridge; this can in turn cause hard starts or inconsistent flow. It can even cause the tip to dry out completely.
- Remember to recap your pen or retract the tip when you finish writing. This keeps your pen from making marks on pencil cases and also prevents it from drying out.
Due to the glitter particles in shimmering inks, there are special considerations.
Shake it, but gently. Those sparkles that make your ink glitter will start settling to the bottom of the bottle after ten to fifteen seconds, so you'll want to fill your converter relatively quickly. Also, shaking the bottle gently and slowly is important. If you shake it aggressively, you're more likely to develop air bubbles, which will interfere with capillary action. This means you'll likely experience stops and starts when you write.
Shake it again, gently. Once your pen is filled with shimmering ink, you'll want to roll it in your palms gently each time you use it to write. This moves those glitter particles around to increase suspension. Again, don't shake the pen aggressively in order to prevent air bubbles (and ink in your cap).
Consider your paper. Paper has a noticeable impact on how your fountain pen writes. This is especially true for shimmering ink. You want to use a paper that doesn't eat up all the glitter in your ink, which is what very absorbant paper does (e.g. Moleskine, Inkjet copy paper, most recycled papers). Chose a smooth, ink resistant paper that is fountain pen friendly, such as Tomoe River (found in Midori's Traveler's Notebook), Clairefontaine Triomphe, and Rhodia paper.
Give it a good clean. To prevent the sparkles from building up in your pen, clean it out regularly. You may need a little extra time and a few extra flushes for glittering ink. Consider using a fountain pen flushing solution and taking out the nib, if you can. A toothbrush can also be used to clean the feed.
DID YOU KNOW?
- J. Herbin ink bottles have a built-in pen rest at the top for your fountain pen. A clever, discreet design feature.
- A converter can be installed into a fountain pen just like a cartridge.
- TWSBI fountain pens do not use cartridges or converters. Ink is filled directly into the pen.
- LAMY fountain pens are designed with removable nibs, so you can swap nib types without changing your favourite LAMY pen, if you wish.
- To change your nib, use a piece of tape. Stick it to the top of the nib and pull straight out from the tip. The nib will stick to the tape and slide off the pen.
- As a rule of thumb, the smaller your nib, the more scratchy it tends to be (EF & F), B will be buttery smooth. Actual results vary by brand and model, and may also be impacted by type of ink and paper used.
- If you suffer from hand cramps, rollerballs and even more so, fountain pens, keep you from pressing down on your pen too hard and provide a more ergonomic writing experience.
- Dye-based inks are the most common and low-maintenance for fountain pens. Dyes are inherently water-soluble, so even if they clog your pen from drying out, you can clean it with water.
- Kaweco Al Sport Collection Vibrant Violet Fountain Pen
- TWSBI Diamond 580 Fountain Pen ALR Nickel
- Diamine Ink Bottle Mystique Shimmer
- Diamine Ink Bottle Firefly Shimmer
- Rhodia Classic Meeting Book A4+
- LAMY Safari Terra Red Rollerball Pen