Fountain pens are considered the superstars of the pen world. I discovered this while searching for solutions to the writer’s hand cramps I got from frequent writing.
Luckily, a friend of mine, a fountain pen expert, told me about the comfortable grip she has enjoyed while using everyday fountain pens. Since then, I have been enjoying my handwriting sessions with a smile and without trouble.
This article will discuss several benefits of an everyday fountain pen and debunk any misconceptions.
Fountain Pens Explained
Invented by Petrache Poenaru, the fountain pen is a contraption with an inbuilt holder, also known as the fountain. This holder collects liquid ink and, by gravity, feeds ink to the nib.
The ink is redirected to any writing material by the nib’s tip. This process is encased in a barrel, and designs vary depending on the manufacturer.
What Is An Everyday Fountain Pen?
It is a fountain pen that has been modified to endure daily activities while still providing a terrific writing experience after every use.
Parts of a Typical Fountain Pen
This is the pointed end of the pen used for writing. Its design has a cutout known as the breather hole and a tip for first contact with the paper. There are gold or stainless steel nibs, and they can come in various sizes.
The pen nibs are designed in shapes: oblique, reverse oblique, 360-degree, stub, and italic. Aside from their beautiful design, these shapes cater to various needs. For example, the oblique-shaped nib is specifically for right-handed people.
As the name states, the nib feed brings a steady ink supply to the tip. Nib feeds are peculiar to nibs and cannot be interchanged amongst fountain pens.
The barrel refers to the housing of all the internal parts of the pen.
This is located on the nib. It’s not just an aesthetic addition but plays a functional role in using this writing instrument. It is through this hole that air can enter the feed and displace the ink downwards for writing.
Reservoir or Cavity
It holds a portion of the ink, and it’s permanently located inside the pen. It can be detachable or designed as a cavity within the pen itself.
This is close to the nib and looks like rows of notches. It acts as a stabilizer, controlling the flow of ink it receives from the feed.
It is the cover for the nib. It stems from the leakage of ink when not in use.
Choosing Your Pen
When choosing an everyday fountain pen, it’s best to learn the features that would benefit you most. These are the major attributes that you should look out for:
Shape of Tip
The nib itself is a truncated cone with a slit running down the breather hole to the tip, which has been soldered with Iridium or other hard materials. The tip heavily determines your writing style. The shape can be square, round, crisp italic, stub, and cursive italic.
Reservoir or Cavity Size
Since you want to get a fountain pen, the capacity of its reservoir or cavity matters a lot. The appropriate cavity size removes the burden of carrying ink cartridges or bottles.
Another important aspect to consider is the mechanism employed in regulating the internal flow. A mechanism that allows the excess flow of ink will produce broad lines that take a longer time to dry.
You also want to avoid a frugal flow which may result in thinner lines and lower quality writing.
Cost of Pen
This is probably the primary reason most people avoid fountain pens. Although most fountain pens are pricey, this is a general misconception. In the long run, these pens will prove to be an economic bargain.
Apart from ink replacement, you don’t have to replace fountain pens for a long time. Plus, everyday fountain pens are more affordable due to their modern designs and easy access to raw materials.
The nib size of these pens varies, from double extra fine, extra fine, fine, medium, broad, extra broad, and scroll. Select nib size based on your preference, the paper type, style, and size of your handwriting.
You need to carefully select what works for you. Most beginners make use of the fine or sometimes the medium nib, but ultimately, this is not the standard for everyone.
Size of Pen
When choosing your pen, pay attention to the size of your hand. If you get a pen that’s too small or large for your hand, you’ll have a hard time finding the right grip for smooth writing.
For people with bigger hands, there are big pens of up to 7.21 inches in length and 0.63 inches in grip diameter.
Type and Color of Ink
If you fancy different ink colors or your field demands a variety of colors, you may have to steer clear of a pen that uses only one or a few types of ink.
Most manufacturers use peculiar designs and provide unique accessories specific to their products. Hence, the ink color you are looking for might not be accessible depending on the pen’s make.
The material used in the external covering will determine how durable your pen will be. The barrels are made with lacquer, a resin sourced from a tree and used as a varnish.
The materials used for barrels are categorized into 3 types: resin, non-precious and precious metals.
Difference Between the Standard Fountain Pen and the Ballpoint Pen
Many people use these writing tools to enjoy a smooth writing experience. But there are apparent differences between them. Apart from the indisputable fact that a lot more effort is put into the making of an everyday fountain pen, it is more costly than ballpoint pens.
The everyday fountain pen uses liquid or water-based ink, which is stored in its reservoir or cavity and can be easily refillable from an ink bottle or ink cartridges.
The ballpoint utilizes a paste-based ink doled out at the ballpoint. It is not refillable, and you have to dispose of it and get a brand new ballpoint pen (a cyclic runaround) once it runs out.
Why is a Fountain Pen a Good Choice for You?
- It is more economical in the long run
- It adds style to the wielder: a fountain pen does make you interesting
- It’s eco-friendly. Unlike the enormous plastic waste caused by ballpoint pens, a fountain pen simply requires refilling for long usage
- Your handwriting becomes more beautiful and glamorous. A fountain pen teaches you dexterity and patience. This will, in turn, significantly improve your writing
- You can use your favorite colors without having to get a new pen
Some Misconceptions About Fountain Pens
Are They Way Too Expensive?
Expensive? Yes, some fountain pens have eye-popping prices. But just like how car prices range from ridiculously expensive to reasonably affordable, some affordable pens are undoubtedly cheaper than what you had imagined.
On the cheaper end, you can expect to pay around $15 for a decent fountain pen, while on the luxurious end, certain pens can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars – or more.
Are They Difficult To Maintain?
Cleaning up your pen before refilling isn’t as problematic as assumed. On the contrary, most pens can easily be cleaned with water even when the ink has dried for days.
The pen parts are fairly sizable and are easy to handle during cleaning. Refilling can be as simple as removing a spent ink cartridge and replacing it with a full one. Or using the pen’s converter to draw ink from a bottle.
Is Ink Difficult to Get?
Inks are available and can be found in almost any stationery. Manufacturers of fountain pens produce ink, and depending on the type of pen you have settled for, provision has been made in abundance.
Do Fountain Pens Use Special Paper?
No. Fountain pen inks are primarily water-based, so they tend to be absorbed quickly. This is because water is a universal solvent. So even cheap paper is perfect for writing with fountain pens.
An everyday fountain pen is a true superstar in its own right, with its unique design and practicality. Whatever myth you may have heard which had denied you the joy of writing, should have been dispelled now that you’ve read through all the information discussed in this article. These Fountain pens are fully equipped to deal with your daily activities.