I’m finally getting back to writing about pens, a topic I find interesting even if that may indicate a psychological abnormality. A number of things have been sitting around waiting to be introduced here but without a common theme to link them. If pressed I can say all the pens do happen to have good points, and I mean that literally.

First up is something cool due to its obscurity. The doo-dad maker Levenger sells a lot of fountain pens and sometimes contracts with manufacturers to make special editions for them. Somewhere around 10 years ago they had the Italian firm Omas make a nice medium sized piston filling fountain pen called the Articula. Not a big deal in itself but the hook with this pen was that it had a flexible nib. Of course a modern flexible nib is only semi-flexible in comparison to those from the days of yore and this is no exception. Nonetheless the nib is comfy to use and can be coaxed into an expressive mood. I’m not sure why this wasn’t a more popular pen considering all this.

Nibs in a row: Sheaffer, Parker, and Omas.

It’s hard to find a Parker Vacumatic with a nib that isn’t narrow but they exist and I had such in the form of disembodied Canadian made stub. Never wanting such a nifty nib to go to waste I put it on a circa 1940 standard size Vac I had recently purchased as part of a lot. Even more frightening was this Frankenpen was already equipped with the wrong filling unit in the form of an earlier lock down version instead of the proper aluminum speedline. The result is actually not scary but a nice writing mish-mash with lots of character.

The final pen is a Sheaffer’s Thin Model also equipped with a stub. A damaged barrel on the original required a replacement which turned out to be green creating an overall effect is a bit like a classic Pelikan (one of my favorite color combinations.) The modest stub nib writes smoothly and like the Parker discussed previously isn’t something you see every day.

Pens and Pooper. Thanks to Hazel for the pen wrap underneath. (click for closeup)

You have to have some paper to use a pen with and I got lucky enough to find something a few weeks ago both fun and environmentally sound. On a visit to Office Max I saw a few boxes of Terracycle recycled paper on closeout. What makes this cool is that we’re not talking paper made from post-consumer waste but made from some out of the ordinary items. The sample pack I have uses grass, banana peels and pachyderm excrement to make the sheets. Yes, you heard me: elephant poop.

All three papers are moderately rough in texture but very attractive with some unbleached elements appearing randomy. They are also very fountain pen friendly exhibiting no bleed or feathering. Sadly the reason I saw this was because it is no longer made and can’t be found at the chain anymore. However, if you search the web you will find other places that still market papers like this, even the poopy one.

And on that note I think it is a good time to end this post.

  1. January 29, 2010, 10:30 am

    Hi Thomas,
    I noticed your post this morning, thanks for the mention. If you ever find that you would like some more of the paper, it’s available from our site here:


    1. TAO
      January 29, 2010, 10:48 am

      George: Thanks for the link and I’m glad to see that the paper is available from you. Its impressive quality makes it worth a look for fountain pen users.

  2. February 13, 2010, 7:13 pm

    May I ask how many sheets you got and for what price? I like clearance goodies ^^

  3. TAO
    February 13, 2010, 8:15 pm

    Sara: You’d really be luck to find that clearance paper now. I don’t know if every store discounts differently but I got 100 sheets for $5 I think.

  4. February 20, 2010, 4:03 am

    So this is where you got the paper samples you sent over! Very interesting! Thank you!

    1. TAO
      February 20, 2010, 11:20 am

      Mona: Yep, I got a box for myself too.