Posted in Reviews, Stories

Eco Friendly Stuff, The Review

At the end of November on Cyber Monday, I highlighted some eco-friendly pen and journaling options. To be transparent, I do not have any vested financial interest in any of the products but I was intrigued and willing to try some out, thus I made some purchases.

For Christmas, my wife got me (she also got me a pen, imagine her surprise) eco-friendly pencils, a fountain pen, and a journal. Let’s see how well they did and what did they cost me.

Rainbow Recycled Paper Pencils, wood and plastic free.

The pencils write and act well… like pencils. I put one in an electric pencil sharpener, no issues there, it took a perfect sharp point. Some Amazon reviewers complained about this but I had no issues. I love the rainbow color. The pencil is made from recycled paper and is wood and plastic-free. The writing material is of premium #2 HB pencil lead, conform with EN71 and ISO9001. When I put the pencil to work, the point did not break (another popular complaint). I was sketching a plan for built-in bookcases, I feel I gave the pencils a good workout. At $1/pencil it’s not the cheapest alternative but I can find plenty of more expensive wood pencils.

Zenzoi bamboo fountain pen

The pen cost $24, is handmade, and is classified as a calligraphy pen! I’m not entirely sure why, as it came with a German medium iridium nib. In the Q&A section another purchaser described it as a medium-bold point pen nib, not flat like a calligraphy nib, it’s more like a Speedball B-6 nib. With a name like Zenzoi, yes it is made in China for Germany. The pen is considered eco-friendly because it is made from bamboo, which as we all know is grass.

Zenzoi, a bamboo pen in a bamboo case

The barrel has a smooth finish with just a slight textured feel. The two blind end caps are rough. I am fighting the desire to get out the Danish Oil and apply a finish to the pen.

The converter is the type that is just pushed into the section. At the end that operates the plunger-screw mechanism is easily detached allowing access for cleaning. In the spirit of being green, I inked it up with Bayou Nightfall by Papier Plume. The ink writes wet, no sheen, and minor feathering.

Bayou Nightfall by Papier Plume

Vital Statistics

  • Capped length 145mm,
  • Uncapped length 123mm,
  • Barrel diameter 11.5mm,
  • Cap diameter 13mm,
  • Pen weighs in at 13g.

Decomposition Notebook

The Decomposition Notebook turned out to be a fake. I know Caveat Emptor but I got it from Amazon and assumed (yes I know about ass-u-me). The good news, is it only cost me $6 and it is no longer available. I recommend going directly to Decomposition where the books are 50%-100% post-consumer waste and printed with soy-based inks. I noticed a couple pocket or field journals, maybe I’ll get one, compare it to the fake, and review it.

On a side note, we have started using cloth unpaper towels in place of paper towels for most clean-ups. They are attractive, highly absorbent, and come in a pack of 10. Alternatively, I guess I could have used hand towels or dishwashing clothes but really, they aren’t as attractive, and honestly, they are not as absorbent.

The Unpaper Towels

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Posted in Pens, Stories

Fountain Pen 101 Primer – How Does a Fountain Pen Work

It is interesting or shall I say surprising to me the number of people I’ve handed a fountain pen, encouraging them to give it a try, they either decline or stumble along. The initial look of fear, then confusion, followed by the exasperation “I don’t know how.” They are at a loss – how to use the pen. Thus the inspiration for a series of Fountain Pen 101 primers.

The workings of a fountain pen can be described simply as a controlled leak.

Major Fountain pen components

  • The nib. The pointed metal end that transfers ink to the paper and is the most recognized or iconic part of a fountain pen.
  • The feed. Sits under the nib and supplies ink from inside the pen to the nib. It often contains a visible set of grooves or fins which collect ink flowing from the reservoir and regulates ink flow.
  • The reservoir. Where the ink is stored in the pen’s barrel.

Take notice of the nib, there is a slit from the nib tip running half the length, terminated at the “breather” hole. The slit is placed above a similar groove along the dorsal side of the feed. The breather hole has two purposes, it acts as a means of “stress-relief” preventing the slit from growing and it allows air to enter the ink channel.

How does it works

How does the ink get from the reservoir onto the paper?

In part, gravity, but mostly through capillary action – the process by which liquids travel along the surface of a solid material because of attraction. Think how water spreads out across a paper towel to soak up a spill.

The feed of a fountain pen consists of one big channel with small groves or channels (usually 3) cut into the channel bottom. Ink flows along the small channels while air flows through the space above. This arrangement allows air to flow into the ink reservoir and simultaneously allows ink to flow towards the paper at a controlled rate. Capillary action along with gravity keep the channel filled thus preventing ink from escaping the fountain pen because air can’t get into the reservoir to displace ink.

The fins of the feed act as a temporary reservoir regulating the flow of ink. They fill with ink that is drawn across the top of the feed and the ventral side of the nib by capillary action.

A quick note on Fountain Pen Ink

Ink is water with dyes and other chemicals required for proper functioning. The chemicals create the properties of the ink, including the surface tension or viscosity (wettability). While the saturation of the dyes provides the color. Also, present are anti-bacterial chemicals so your ink does develop a life of its own in the bottle. Mold does bad things to your pen!

The ink also needs to be the right viscosity for capillary action to pull it through the feed. This is why it’s so important to only use fountain pen inks in a fountain pen.

The Ink Reservoir

The ink reservoir stores ink and can be a simple ink cartridge to a complex filling mechanism that’s capable of drawing in and storing the ink. Contemporary pens primarily use one of 4 types of ink storage; converter, piston, cartridge, or eyedropper, all located inside the handle.

A cartridge is the most common of the reservoirs. Each comes pre-filled with ink, making it easy to replace. Simply buy a new cartridge and replace the old one.

Converter and Piston reservoirs function by twisting the filling mechanism at the end of the pen. To operate, submerge the nib or opening of the converter into a bottle of ink twist the mechanism, and ink is drawn into the reservoir. Converter reservoirs are similar to the ink cartridge in that they can be removed. While Pistons are non-removable converters that come built into the fountain pen.

Eyedropper ink storage is more popular in regions that experience year-round heat and humidity (like in Asia). The filling process is considered cumbersome and potentially messy. The process is not that bad, simply remove the section, use an eyedropper (I use a straw) to draw ink from a bottle. Insert the eyedropper into the barrel, give it a squeeze, and you are done. These pens hold considerably more ink but due care is needed when filling them.

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Posted in Collection, Pens, Reviews, Stories

The (Wish) List

I usually acquire pens based on impulse and circumstance (i.e. dumb luck), which has introduced me to a variety of odd pens. Some contemporary, some vintage, but all speak to me. The pens on this list are not pens to finish my collection. Nope, these are pens that have caught my eye, struck my fancy, and now I have a penchant for owning them. Oh and BTW, I love lists. Without further ado, in alphabetical order, let’s start the new year with a wish list ….

Benu – Silver Skull

“Silver Skull Fountain Pen is inspired by our childhood dreams of piracy and adventures. Rebellion and daring design is created for those who share the same ideals. Skillfully crafted by hand from glossy resin with its hand-friendly shape and shining decorative ring the Silver Skull Pen is a stylish accessory and a real pleasure to use.” – Benu Pen.com

I just thought this pen is the coolest. Why? Well I have a fondness for black pens, plus I have a fascination for Día de Muertos and who doesn’t like pirates. There are many “skull” pens on the market but this is the one for me.

Benu Silver Skull

Irish Pens – Black Carbon Fiber

“At 66 grams, Rhodium and Titanium wrapped in Black Carbon Fiber and with a Peter Bock nib at the business end this is a serious fountain pen, a fountain pen that will feel at home in the most exclusive boardroom, business setting or in your personal writing space, its gravitas will not go unnoticed whenever it is used. When the written words really matter! this is the fountain pen to use.” – Irish Pens.ie

Irish Pens, an Irish indie pen company specializing in pens made in County Cavan, Ireland of Irish native woods. I originally was drawn to their pens made from bog oak, but I saw this one! You have to admit, it takes your breath away. No surprise, this pen is the most expensive on the list.

Irish Pens Carbon Black

Kaweco – Student Pen

“Nostalgic fountain pen in soft green with golden details made of precious resin. The Student 60’s Swing impresses with a soft and organic green. The combination of green and golden elements is harmonious and underlines the series’s nostalgic, bulky shape. It matches the motto of the Swinging Sixties: Harmony and peace. The Student fountain pen with its curved pen body made of high-quality resin guarantees a haptic and visual writing pleasure.” – Kaweco Pen.com

Germans are known for their over engineering not for their simplicity, this this pen is the exception. The design, aesthetics, complimentary colors of ivory and green – beauty in simplicity. I do wish the section was not gold, but rather the same color as the cap.

Kaweco Student

Parker – 51

“When it introduced the “51” in 1941, the George S. Parker Company knew it had a winner. The pen was stylish but not flashy, durable but not clunky, and reliable but not overengineered. Over the next 31 years, the pen proved itself immensely popular. Tales are told of people who, unable to afford a whole pen, would purchase only a cap to clip in a pocket, giving the appearance of a complete pen.“ – Richards Pens.com

Parker 51 is the one vintage pen everyone should own, or so I have been told. After reading tons of accolades, this pen is worthy of the distinction. It is an attractive pen, unique in design. I am looking for an acceptable 1941 pen but they are not common. I fancy the Cedar Blue color but as mentioned I’m sure dumb luck will prevail and I’ll get what I get.

Parker 51

**** Update, a 1941 or maybe it’s a 1944 (more on this at a later time) is in the mail and of course it is not Cedar Blue.

Scrikss – Heritage Black GT

“Launched in 2014 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Scrikss company, the Heritage range is intended to be emblematic, a flagship of the brand Scrikss. The painstaking design is a combination between traditional and modernism, having as inspiration the aqueducts model that surrounded the old city of Istanbul in the past. It is created by the Turkish designer Kunter Sekercioglu.” – Scrikss Pen.com.tr

I stumbled on this pen after I bought a Scrikss 419. A lovely metal pen, with laser etched scrollwork. I feel like there is an elegance inspired by Instanbul. I have not found a US dealer as yet.

Scrikss Heritage GT

Posted in Pens, Stories

My Favorite Quote: Handwritten (Happy New Year)

Let’s have some fun, what’s your favorite quote, saying, or wish for the new year. Write it down and share with the world. It doesn’t matter if you use a fountain pen, ballpoint pen or a #2 pencil – write it down. Typing is so blah and impersonal, enjoy the effort and create something worth sharing. And don’t worry about your handwriting, mine’s atrocious.

Pens:

  • Esterbrook SJ, 9556 Firm Fine nib
  • American Pencil Co #1156, Esterbrook Drawlet nibs #3 & #5
  • Hero 395, Fine nib
  • Conklin All America, Medium nib

Inks:

  • De Atramentis – Fog Grey
  • Scribo – Chianti Red
  • Waterman – Serenity Blue
  • Pelican – 4001 Black

Posted in Pens, Uncategorized

Eco-Friendly Stationery, Pens & Pencils

Going green has not only become a hip trend, it is a way of life for many. Regardless of the politics, today I am focusing on environmentally conscious options relating to paper and notebooks. I sorta feel this is an underserved topic/community. With the gift buying frenzy upon us, I thought it is appropriate to mention the options. Never know who may be looking for unique or special eco-friendly gifts.

Disclaimer: For transparency, I have no relationships with any of the vendors listed nor have I tried their products. I was interested in the topic and found their products or websites interesting to me. I have no idea if any of the paper, stationery, or notebooks are fountain pen friendly. Also, I am relying on others so if the statistics are wrong or unagreeable, sorry I’m restating the claims of others – don’t shoot the messenger. Sounds like a potential future blog topic.

Eco-friendly stationery is way more than just notebooks and paper stock made of recycled newspapers. Going green now includes sustainable stationery, zero-waste (fully recyclable), eco-friendly pens and pencils, ethical stationery made from ethically produced materials like sustainably managed timber. So much for buying notebooks or paper stock based on paper weight (gsm), lined vs dot vs grid print, hard vs soft covers and pretty artwork.

Fun fact: traditional pens are not recyclable because they contain an assortment of metals, plastics, and chemicals so they can’t be recycled. Well, unfortunately neither can eco-friendly pens. Annually, 1.6 billion pen make it to the landfills, so next time someone smugly asks “why do you write with a FOUNTAIN PEN?” Now you have THE answer for them – “Fountain pens are a lifetime investment and won’t be joining their 1.6 billion cousins any time soon.”

I never knew! – Click each picture for purchase information

Eco-friendly pens and pencils: available in a variety of materials often tree-free and biodegradable, no polymers toxic-free. Often made of recycled paper, bamboo or other organics. Eco-Fountain pens like the Zenzoi (made from bamboo) while others are sustainably harvested wood from 70% certified PEFC forests.

Recycled paper pencils have no splinters, sharpen easily and come in cool colors, plus their erasers are latex-free and PVC-free. I even found an eco-friendly pencil called Sprouts, instead of recycling it stick the stub into a pot of soil and watch it grow into a plant. Available on Amazon.

Relying heavily on the American stationary blog post (included in the reference material) on this topic let’s walk through what eco-friendly stationery options are available.

Recycled paper: much like it sounds, recycled paper from 10% to 100% recycled materials. Using recycled stationery means less wasted energy, water usage, and landfill space.

Renewable energy paper: is paper manufactured from wind power and other renewable energy sources. This reduces air pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants released into the atmosphere.

Chlorine-free paper: White paper is often made with chlorine as the primary bleaching agent, this paper is made from only environmentally friendly bleaching processes.

Sustainable Forestry Initiative certified papers: this paper is made solely from practicing sustainable forestry and land management. This is a direct response to the issues that face North American forests.

Tree-free paper: this paper is made completely free of trees. Instead of chopping down trees, other sources of fiber are found like cotton fiber and other non-wood fiber materials. This saves trees and prevents the demolition of forests.

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Posted in Pens, Reviews, Stories

Airmail Wality 69LG Eyedropper

Company Back Story

Airmail Pen Company (Est. in 1951) is one of the oldest pen companies in India. Renown for producing the best Indian fountain pens. They market pens under 2 brands – Wality and Airmail both manufactured in Mumbai. Wality Pens are generally not readily found in the northern part of India. Surprisingly, even in Mumbai the availability of the pen is limited to select areas of the city.

Initially, Airmail manufactured completely lathe turned ebonite pens, thus continuing with tradition, the 69 is a completely lathe turned pen made of swirled Acrylic. The feed is made of ebonite and requires heat setting of the nib for proper ink flow. The quality of the acrylic used in this pen is far better than the other Wality pens, which are known to omit a pungent odor.

My Pen

My interest in Indian pens came about by accident. I was intrigued in eyedropper filling systems after I acquired the 2 Gold Starry pens. But my focus was now on Mabie Todd Black Bird eyedropper pens. Research on the eyedropper filling system quickly leads to inks and the necessity of eyedropper fillers because of the impact of weather (heat and humidity) on inks, then to Asian pens.

I paid $14 for the pen, which is a normal price for this pen. First impression, the pen felt solid, it’s a big pen but not too thick – just right. The section is made of the same acrylic as is the cap and the barrel. There is a large gold plate band on the cap with “Airmail Regd” engraved on it.

The clip is gold plate, with pyramided rectangle boxes running the length of the clip. The clip is attached to a gold plated ring and held in place by a blind cap.

It is an eyedropper pen. When I unscrewed the section it took 9 full turns to remove it from the barrel and the cap took 2 complete turn to remove. To prevent ink leakage, the threads on the section need a small amount of silicone grease to seal the pen or maybe the addition of a small O-ring.

It is called an “eyedropper” because you use an eyedropper to fill the reservoir in the barrel. If you don’t have one, a pipette or a straw if you are really cheap (wink-wink) will also work.

Generally the Wality nibs are known for bad behavior but this one writes well but needs to be heat set – ink drops form under the feed. But it still writes fine.

Vital Statistics

  • Capped length 148mm,
  • Barrel diameter is 13mm,
  • The cap diameter is 15mm,
  • Pen weighs in at 18g.

Cons

My only complaint which is not uncommon is how wet the pen writes – I need to heat set the nib. It is possible my ink flow issue is caused by the ink viscosity. This is expected at this price point. The tins on the nib are aligned and it writes well. Manually adding ink via an eyedropper (ok a straw who am I kidding) takes a bit of getting use to. I was hyper focused on keeping the open barrel facing up at all times while filling the pen. This takes some getting used to it, plus there is the fear of wearing the ink if a mishap occurs.

Opinion

For this price, you can’t beat this pen. It is attractive, feels solid, writes well. Readily available on eBay in a variety of cool colors. And of course, it is wallet friendly!

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Posted in Stories

Plastic vs Ebonite Feeds

….Continued

Plastic Feeds

Fun Fact: Contemporary plastic feeds are made from the same plastic used in the manufacture of Lego blocks – so I’ve been told – hmmm. I did not verify this with Lego.

Plastic feeds are now designed with specific surface properties to promote ink flow by capillary action, this was not always the case and for near-perfect air compensation. These plastic feeds are injection molded for economic and precision mass production, benefiting the bottom line, quality control, and user experience. Through injection molding, manufactures are able to attain such a tight tolerance as to eliminate heat fitting. In this fashion, everybody has the same experience and you can be assured that the next pen purchase will be as enjoyable if not better than the previous purchase.

Visconti switched to plastic feeds for two reasons, quality and performance. I’m hearing this 3rd hand but they claim the average quality of a plastic feed is much higher than a well-made ebonite feed. Through plastics they were able to better manage air compensation, permitting higher air pressure gap management. Don’t forget that 70 years ago commercial air flights were rare; therefore, air compensation was limited to weather changes and skyscrapers.

Cons

Plastic feeds, from what I have read, need to be treated with an etchant or something similar to achieve a similar effect. Remember it is not possible to tune a plastic feed. An engineer with Lamy, (again hearing this 3rd hand) said of plastic feeds, “it took a lot of different chemical treatments to make the plastic feeds as rough as the sawn (a past participle of saw) ebonite ones.” While others claim chemicals were never used on plastic feeds to make them wettable.

Plastic feeds need more time to properly function when the nib is applied to paper. The smooth surface of the plastic repels water and requires a rough finish to allow the ink to flow properly via capillary action. Thus if you manually adjust a plastic feed by cutting an ink channel, there is a chance the surface will repel the ink and the feed will no longer work.

Final thoughts

Ebonite pen feeds are handmade on a lathe and mill like vintage pens, the human element adds to the personality of the pen. Hard rubber (ebonite) was one of the first, if not the first plastic. Establishing a tradition! Along came ABS Plastic with the advantage that feeds can be mass produced using injection molding, a process not only much cheaper but more precise, delivering more consistent quality of performance to the pen owner.

BECAUSE, like so often with tradition, things are done the way they have always been done – BECAUSE. Ebonite feeds should still be machined from hard rubber but not BECAUSE, but for the novelty and to honor the tradition.

To close, lets answer the question of which material makes a better fountain pen feed. Applying Sherlock Holmes’s deductive reasoning, ebonite is hard rubber which is considered plastic. Whereas, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene is plastic and considered plastic thus feeds made with either material is made with plastic, argument solved!

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Posted in Stories

Ebonite vs Plastic Feeds

The inspiration for this post hit me when I was reviewing a vintage Arnold pen, it has a super cheap plastic feed. Once I got to researching the topic, reading the vast number of opinions and thoughts it became clear this was going to be a long post. How was I to organize it: fact vs fiction, plastic vs ebonite, pros vs cons… It quickly became obvious that I needed to split the topic into 2 posts so I can stay within the 600-word self mandate.

What is ebonite? It’s a vulcanized natural rubber used as an inexpensive replacement for ebony wood. What is ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) plastic? It’s an inexpensive replacement for ebonite. Now that we have established both are cost saving solutions to a manufacturing challenge we can move on.

The Feed

Let’s start with a quick primer on fountain pen mechanics. The feed is the part that sits under the nib and supplies ink from inside the pen. Contemporary feeds are usually made of plastic, while vintage feeds are made of ebonite. Feeds contains 1 or more ink channels to draw ink from inside the pen using capillary action (thank Leonardo da Vinci) — the nib’s ink slit draws the ink from the feed to the tip. Most feeds have distinctive fins to hold excess ink thus regulating the ink flow.

For the feed to work, it needs to be sitting flush against the underside of the nib, free of clogs in the ink channel or fins. These tiny channels allow air to flow into the ink reservoir while ink flows down. Ink flow depends upon the width of both the ink channel and air channel. The ink also needs to be of the correct viscosity for capillary action to pull it through the feed, this means NO India ink in fountain pens!

The Physics

Wetting or wettability – is the ability of ink to maintain contact with a solid surface (the feed). Adhesive forces between the ink and the feed cause the ink to spread across the surface of the feed via capillary action. Capillary action is when a liquid automatically draws itself into thin tubes. The most common example of capillary action is water spreading across a paper towel. For more in-depth discussion on fountain pen physics I recommend this article on Ravens March Fountain Pens.

Ebonite feed

Ebonite is favored because it is easily wetted with ink and it won’t bead up on an ebonite surface because it is textured. The milling process naturally leaves micro scratches on the feed which are required for capillary action. Machining ebonite is a difficult process, the tools need to be kept sharp. Each ebonite feed is made on an individual basis by hand – workmanship.

With ebonite, you can make adjustments to the feed as needed. The feed can be sanded, milled, or bent to increase or decrease ink flow. The Noodlers flex line of pens uses an ebonite feed for this very reason. Those pens often require adjustments to correct their ink flow and this is only possible with an ebonite feed.

Cons

Each Ebonite feed is hand cut and finished, making them subject to quality issues and expensive. The milling process is also a strike against ebonite as ebonite feeds cannot be created by laser. It’s time-consuming work on a lathe and mill, using metal tools some as small as .015mm in diameter. The ebonite is very abrasive thus the tooling has a very short life, adding to the cost. The ability to repeatedly cut the same-sized groove is nearly impossible and groove size impacts ink flow.

Besides, have you ever noticed how long it takes to wash an ebonite feed?

To Be Continued ……

Posted in Stories

Fountain Pen Day 2021

Happy FPD10, I knew this was coming but procrastination is a wonderful thing. Anyway, for those who don’t know, Fountain Pen Day was established 10 years ago, it is celebrated internationally on the first Friday in November. The day was established “to help embrace, promote, and share the use of fountain pens in day-to-day life, as well to help revive handwriting as a whole.” Proof I am not the only weirdo out there.

I did not plan to post today but after all the emails I received and some comments on Facebook I felt compelled. Our friends at Well-Appointed Desk mentioned an ink that totally got my attention. I am so gullible (yup a sucker born every minute) and immediate went to their website and purchased a bottle along with a bottle “Bayou Nightfall.”

Papier Plume‘s special FPD ink: Cafe Diabolique which was blended to be an exact match for Cafe Brulot, a trance-inducing after-dinner coffee ritual which is still being performed by a few old-school waiters skilled in the flaming at-table ritual.”

Posted in Stories, Uncategorized

The “Seinfeld” (a blog post about nothing)

Going a little off topic but hey it’s my blog. Anyway, I’m 45 posts in and I feel it’s time to request constructive criticism, to question the Blog, to evaluate it, to figure out what works, what doesn’t and for that, I need YOUR input. I would really appreciate a comment or two – don’t be shy.

You may ask why am I doing this at posting 45, I plan my posts in advance, I try to pair related posts and have topics planned all the way into August 2022, so now is where this topic hits. I considered making this posting number 42 (as it is the meaning of life) but I wanted to coordinate the Esterbrook Pastel refurbishment with the how to start a pen collection.

Some fun statistics about the blog: this is the 45th post, to which I’ve made 26 revisions. Overall, the blog contains nearly 27k words. My posts have been shared on Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Tumblr and Pinterest. The average post takes me upwards of 10 hours to research, write, edit, etc before it is published. My posts have been visited by +620 visitors from 23 countries excluding the US, generating +1000 views, 81% of my viewership comes from Facebook and I have 16 followers. The surprising thing, the blog is about pens!

What am I doing? Why am I doing this? Is it worth doing?

Momsotherside.com

I have NO interest in becoming an “influencer” or receiving free “stuff” nor do I judge my success or failure by “likes” and “followers,” this isn’t about inflating my ego. The blog is all about creating content that I hope others can use or find interesting. When I told my daughter I was blogging she told friends and they all got a good laugh. Was it because the “old guy” is blogging or the content or both? Can’t tell you how happy I was to hear this…..really. There are millions of blogs focusing on book reviews, movie reviews, food, travel, or feelings. Which is great and some I follow, but I was looking for an outlet for my experiences, maybe I could help others, and hope someone may learn from my mistakes. So I started creating content that bucks the trend. In an era when everything is disposable, I’m refurbishing pens that would otherwise end up in a landfill. There are no special skills necessary, so hey look the old guy is doing it.

Tell a good story.

Spike Lee

How many people do you know have or can create home DIY nickel electroplating? Better yet, how many do you know would try, including construction of a project box (I so miss Radio Shack). Actually, I found building the box and doing the electroplating was a blast and I wanted to tell someone, hence the genesis of the blog. Also, I am a bit sentimental, when I write with these vintage pens I try to appreciate the stories these pens might tell if they could talk, or the history they’ve seen, or the joy and the heartbreak they’ve realized on paper. Some pens are personalized, naturally, I research the owner and include their story in the blog. “I’m just trying to tell a good story and make thought-provoking” content.

You have to create content that they want to read.

New-lune.com

Personally, I find it challenging to read long blog postings, I usually skim them more often then not and I should know better as I am quite the wind bag. Early on, my typical post was +800 words so I decided to limit the future posts to 600ish words. To accomplish this I’ve split topics into multiple posts and I’ve added more pictures (worth a thousand words).

A Penny for your Thoughts”

Sir Thomas More (1535)

Please feel free to comment on the following:

  • Are the posts still too wordy?
  • Is the style ok, I prefer conversational like I am speaking directly to you
  • Is the content ok?
  • How about the theme, is that ok?
  • Any thoughts, likes or dislikes.