So this month I am going to continue with the Zenzoi eco-friendly bamboo pen. Overall the pen has really impressed me. I did a quick review of their entire online catalog and they have some attractive pens at an affordable price.
Have you heard the fountain pen myth “don’t lend out your fountain pen to the others because the way a person writes can cause changes to the nib.” Well In January I inked up a used Waterman Lauret I. The pen wrote well with one exception – the sweet spot. Unless I held the pen at a 45-degree angle to the writing surface then turned the pen to the left 45 degrees it would skip. Must be some truth to the myth.
Overall, I enjoyed using the Waterman Lauret and as it is still inked I’ll continue. Some people will not like how thin it is, or mention the lacquer makes it slippery but hey, I have short stubby fingers and it suits me well, It definitely brings back memories of the Waterman Hemispheres, which I still have. I think one needs to make the rotation later this year.
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.
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.
Capped length 145mm,
Uncapped length 123mm,
Barrel diameter 11.5mm,
Cap diameter 13mm,
Pen weighs in at 13g.
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.