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Reviews Written by goodgulf

October 18, 2014
I may just have found...
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I may just have found my perfect purple. It's very dark, but still clearly purple except in a very dim light. I've tried it so far in a Parker 45 and a Lamy 2000, and love the rich, but sober color. It might not be right if you want something flashy, but it's exactly what I was looking for.

Also, although the listing says "water resistance: none", by my test it's very water resistant indeed. Under a heavy soaking it just blurred very slightly, but didn't run.

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October 12, 2014
I've tried this in one...
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I've tried this in one of my go-to pens, a Pilot Custom Heritage 91 with a fine-medium nib. This ink is a bit more subdued than I had in mind when I got it, but it's a nice enough shade. Although the specs on this site say that it's not water resistant, I found it to be very water resistant indeed. That ups my rating to four stars, otherwise it would probably be three.

August 15, 2014
Okay, I have a new favorite...
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Okay, I have a new favorite brown ink. This is a very dark brown, which could even look black if you're not paying attention. It's working beautifully in my Pilot Custom Heritage 92 and on a couple of different papers in two different journals. One pleasant surprise was the water resistance. The ink properties chart here says that the water resistance is "none", but I ran my usual test. Wrote a few lines on a scrap of printer paper, put it in the sink and ran the hot water on it hard for about thirty seconds, then took it out and let it dry out completely on a paper towel. Sometimes an ink will survive the initial soaking, but then blur to illegibility while it's drying. Not this ink. The letters bled just slightly at the edges, and the color lightened a little, but the the writing remained bold and legible.

April 7, 2014
Honestly, you probably...
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Honestly, you probably don't need a pencil that's quite this tiny. There are other mini sized pencils which will fit in a small pocket, but are thick enough to give you a little more to grab on to.

Still, this is a neat little gizmo that delivers on what it promises, and does work. I'll just add a piece of information. That ugly barcode you see in the pictures is just a label which peels off easily enough. It's not laminated on the pencil.

March 31, 2014
If you jam these onto...
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If you jam these onto the cap as far as you possibly can, then they will probably stay on for a fairly long time, but if you trust them to hold a bullet Space Pen in your shirt pocket, eventually you'll be disappointed. I've had years of experience with these, and sooner or later they come off when you least expect it. I keep a bullet Space Pen in a pants pocket, and this clip is mainly useful for keeping the pen from rolling off a table if I put it down there.

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September 7, 2013
I've paid significantly...
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I've paid significantly more than this for fountain pens, but $80 for a rollerball seemed extravagant. I talked myself into it because of the special available when I got it, a $12.50 bottle of black Monteverde ink was included. Also, I wanted one rollerball that would be easy to use with bottled ink, to give me a bit more choice.

It does work quite well, although possibly not with all inks. The first that I tried was Noodler's Bad Green Gator; the pen was writing very dry and showing a tendency to clog. I flushed it out thoroughly and refilled it with Waterman Tender Purple, which is working much better. Monteverde makes their own inks which supposedly will insure a smooth flow, but I didn't want to use the basic black that was included with it right now, or to buy their other colors while I still have plenty of ink to use up.

This is a smooth writer, not smoother than several types of gel pens that I've used, but certainly as good, and again there's that choice of ink colors. The tip seems to be about a medium, so if you want a fine line this would not be the best, but it suits me. It's a bit longer and heavier than I expected, it's comfortable to write with, but not particularly shirt pocket friendly on the basis of size, even if there were not the potential leakage problem that I've seen mentioned in other reviews. I do have pen cases.

It's reasonably attractive, with what looks like laminated carbon fiber, and with the maker's logo not too intrusive. Seems solidly built and likely to be reliable, although every now and then the pushbutton mechanism doesn't catch on the very first try.

On the whole, I won't say this provides a better writing experience than gel rollerballs costing much less, but if you can afford a bit extra up front, the filling system may provide the incentive, and refilling with bottled ink should be less expensive over the long run than buying new gel cartridges.

July 5, 2013
I like the old 0.046...
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I like the old 0.046 inch size lead, or 1.15 mm. You can still get old pencils and old leads in this size, and I have some, but this is the old modern one I know of. I don't know if the lead size is exactly the same, haven't tested the old leads in this pencil, or the modern Retro 51 leads in the old ones. It feels like writing with the same size, however, and the HB leads that Retro 51 sells are a good match for what I want. I use it to write, not draw, although like anyone I might doodle a bit.

It's also a very attractive pencil. The propelling mechanism works very smoothly. It has a nice heft to it without being too heavy. The enclosed leads just glide over the paper, leaving a mark that's neither too faint or too dark (in my opinion, obviously). Besides the one in the pencil there's a 12 pack of extras. Unlike other mechanical pencils you might be used to, this one only holds one lead at a time, which has to be fed in from the tip. So if you think you might be about to use up the current one, you should carry the spares with you, or a second pencil. That's the only real disadvantage I've found.

There's also a tube of 6 extra erasers, which should last a long time. The black eraser on this model erases without smudging the paper, although of course there are crumbs. The metal storage tube that came with it is too nice to throw away, I use it to hold the extra leads and erasers, and the users guide.

Probably this is the only time I'll pay $30 for a pencil, but I just like having one that is visibly nicer than the others, and I like that it uses this "old fashioned" size of lead.

May 22, 2013
Reviews for several colors...
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Reviews for several colors of Diamine ink appear here for some reason; this review is for Diamine Syrah. This ink is a beautiful wine color which has changed my mind in favor of using a red ink for writing at length. It comes out of the pen looking a brighter red, but becomes slightly purplish as it dries. One positive feature that I did not expect is that it has fair water resistance. I soaked a test page, and it only faded and blurred slightly, remaining quite legible. I'll be getting more of this when I start to run low.

November 24, 2012
Nice enough blue, which...
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Nice enough blue, which I hope will look richer if I try it in a pen with a broader, wetter, nib than I'm using right now. It's disappointing that it isn't even a little bit water-resistant. Washes off a test page easily after giving it ten minutes to dry. Well, I wanted to try one expensive ink to see if it was that much better, and it wasn't. Live and learn.

October 20, 2012
A very nice little pen,...
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A very nice little pen, which I carry in a shirt pocket (usually a pocket T). The fine nib is not as fine as I expected, but I can still write small enough to use a pocket notebook. It's a fairly wet writer, too, which probably means I'll go through those small international cartridges fairly fast. After trying the one that came with it, I flushed it out with a syringe and water, and then refilled it with an ink I prefer. Not too big a hassle, but when you refill cartridges like this, they will eventually wear out from being popped in and out, and you'll have to start on a new one. I suppose some compromise is necessary with these mini pens, but if they made a mini-converter for these, it would be worth it.

Some issues brought up by other reviewers. Yes the barrel does have a tendency to start coming unscrewed, and I check it periodically. I've also noticed the little spots of ink on the nib, and figure you just have to live with it. I like the fact that the pocket clip is on there tightly, as I can't think of any reason I'd want it to come off. I do, however, have a secondhand anecdote of someone who lost theirs because they had it clipped to an outside pocket on a bag, and it eventually worked loose.