Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

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Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

Postby sharp21 » Fri May 01, 2015 11:12 pm


I'm looking for a great pen do do some pen and ink style drawings.

Lately I've been blocking out using a hard pencil, then going over it with pen. But the cheap ballpoints and even the trusty old G2 isn't doing it. I need something with great inkflow that is easy to handle.


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Re: Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

Postby mike » Sat May 02, 2015 8:44 pm

Hi Sharp 21, sound to me like you're ready to enter the exciting world of drawing with a fountain pen.
That lovely sensuous line , silky black & wet will push your G2 well to the back of a dark drawer!
You can not do better than a "Platinum Preppy" at the moment , ... num-preppy . Buy a EF (extra fine) & a medium - those two line widths should allow you to experiment very cheaply. The thing is that Platinum make a ridiculously high quality nib for this pen at a throw away price - you can pay 10 times as much or more & not get a nib of the same quality. A no nonsense reliable pen.
A Lamy safari with an extra fine nib (not half as extra fine as platinums) is a pen I like to sketch with , it has a very wet line & glides around the page without a thought & again very reliable - just nice to use.
If you carry a sketch book in your breast pocket constantly on the lookout for a sketching opportunity , then the small sized Kweco Sport might be your thing , again in extra fine. With it's top on it is a full sized pen & is again reliable & good quality.
I've owned maybe a hundred different fountain pens over the years & can tell you for sure that a well chosen cheapish fountain pen that has been well adjusted is the equal of many of it's very expensive cousins.
Don't forget with all of the above pens you can turn the nib upside down & get a thinner line ,use a corner of the nib, hold it at different angles or move it lightly & fast across the page to get variation in your line width - this can be exploited to add greatly to add expression/feeling into your drawings.
Have fun exploring drawing with fountain pens.
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Re: Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

Postby RajeshS » Tue May 05, 2015 2:47 pm

Good to see you Mike - been wondering how you were :)

Sharp21 - you can't go wrong with Mike's advice. Will add Pilot Namiki - an "expensive" pen (by my standards) - but worth it. I love it and have been using it for more than a year and half, I think

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Re: Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

Postby dryope » Fri May 08, 2015 5:49 am

Hi -- the Platinum Carbon fountain pen is really thin and the ink flows well (it was scratchy when brand new, but settled in after a day or so). It comes highly recommended online from other artists, which is how I heard about it. Here is a link to it:

It's a little smoother than a Micron and about as thin as an 0.1. I am a massive fan and I've only had it about a month. It's basically my primary pen for drawing now.
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Re: Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

Postby gpathy » Fri May 22, 2015 12:44 pm

Would like to add to the already excellent suggestions... Noodler's Ahab. Its a pen that needs a bit of getting used to. but once you get a hang of it, its an amazing Flex nib pen at a very low price. The line width variation it offers, produces very expressive work, and its a very simple mechanism that you can tweak to get the right amount of flow. can hold tons of ink when used as a eyedropper.
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Re: Advice Needed - Looking for a new pen!

Postby Junkyard Sam » Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:34 am

Yes, a fountain pen is the way to go! And if you use watercolor in your sketches, consider getting some waterproof ink. I use Noodlers #41 Brown because it's affordable and as archival as fountain pen ink can get. It's a lovely brown and you can watercolor right over it and it doesn't come up at all!

The Platinum Preppy is probably a great first pen as stated above!!!

Some other quick pen reviews:
Lamy Safari. Good German pen. I use the EF nib. It's wider than a Japanese EF nib... This nib & pen works particularly well upside down, giving a line nearly as fine as my Pilot EF nib. (but it has a sort of triangular grip, some people don't like it.)

Pilot Penmanship. Another good affordable option. It has VERY VERY FINE Japanese EF (extra fine) nib. If you ever get one of these get the transparent version! The cap is a little weird though, and it's not a very attractive pen IMHO. It has a similar triangular grip as the Safari (but a little better) so it's actually very comfortable to draw with.

Pilot Prera. This is a beautiful little pen that feels (to me) much more expensive than it cost. It's my favorite at the moment, and I swapped the nib out from the Penmanship so I could have an EF nib! However, this is a very short pen. You have to write with the cap posted, really.

Another pen to consider is the Pilot Metropolitan. It's ~$15 and has the same nib fitting & feed as the Prera and Penmanship and Plumix. I believe the pen is all metal, too? It's a great deal for the price... The only negative I've heard about it is the pen looks a little boring(?) and there's a noticeable stepdown on the barrel and you can feel when drawing.

So those are options to consider, but you can't go wrong with the Preppy so that advice is probably best.

PS. Super important --- fountain pens are a little more inky than normal pens. I had to upgrade to using the Moleskine Art Plus Sketchbook with the 111lb / 160gsm/2 (?) paper... but it's awesome. I can do light watercolor washes with no bleedthrough.

Sorry to be so rambly, I get very excited about fountain pens. They changed my life as an artist!!!
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