What is a Fountain Pen?

What is a Fountain Pen?
The Hemingway | Handmade Wood and Brass Fountain Pen

All writers have a passing familiarity with the benefits of using a fountain pen. You know that reliable, convenient, and consistent writing with a pen is important for a good writer. However, in our modern age, it’s so easy to fall by the wayside when it comes to writing with an actual fountain pen. If you’ve never come across a fountain pen in your writing career, then you’re missing out.

​A fountain pen is a writing utensil that is designed to provide a smooth and fluent writing experience. Some fountain pens have a retractable nib, but they are more often found in traditional designs. The internal ink reservoir allows the user to refill the pen with ink just like a cartridge-based cartridge. Users can customize their pens by choosing from a variety of nib options.

A fountain pen has three key parts:

  • The reservoir (the ink tube concealed in the pen's handle)
  • The nib (the pointed metal conclusion merely drag over the paper The bolster (a plastic tube with three lean channels running down interior it that interfaces the nib to the reservoir)
  • The collector (visible as a set of grooves or balances fair underneath the nib, this portion of the bolster collects ink streaming from the supply and stops as well much flooding out at once).

Here's a cap that conceals the nib when the pen's not in utilize and stops the ink leaking into your coat. Usually, the cap includes a clip on it so you'll wear the write securely in your stash. There's a defensive external case called the barrel, covering the store at the inverse conclusion, regularly made from a profoundly appealing fabric coated with polish. In most fountain pens, the store is either a refillable plastic tube (with a smaller than expected piston/plunger instrument interior for drawing in ink from a bottle) or an expendable ink cartridge.

​Fountain Pen History

Modern fountain pens are a nineteenth-century innovation, but the fountain pen's history goes back to the invention of the quill pen more than a century ago. A half-century later, the first disposable fountain pens would be invented with technical improvements such as ink cartridges and ink reservoirs.

Within the 10th century, when at that point ruler of Egypt, Al-Mu'izz li-Din Allah, inquired his royal skilled worker to plan a pen with its claim inner ink store. Whether they ask was satisfied ​or not remains a mystery. But it was the primary recorded mention of the supplied pen, centuries back. The supplied pen motivated the creation of the fountain pen, named for the inside ‘fountain’ ink source. Maybe poorly named, scholars and creators compared the ink supply of the write to the water source in a fountain.

Reservoir pens come to the crest generation from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries, when ink filling framework innovation progressed. Writers refilled the early plans of fountain pens with an eyedropper syringe and bottled ink, a muddled and badly designed handle. These early models moreover spilled and blotched ink on the page, demolishing a naturally composed letter or commerce contract.

Within the 1880s, Lewis Waterman created the primary capillary bolster fountain pen, which allowed discussion to supplant the misplaced ink within the supply. This development anticipated ink splotches by keeping up break even with pressure inside of the write. As advancements proceeded into the twentieth century, the primary self-filling plans made the wellspring write less demanding to utilize than ever sometime recently.

Allpoint pens presented amid World War II, utilized oil-based ink, a more lasting choice than the water-based ink utilized in fountain pens. After the war, mass generation of the ballpoint write (and the afterward rollerball write) made the ballpoint more open. With a lower buy cost and included comfort, ​the ballpoint pen rapidly supplanted the wellspring write, which had been the prevailing composing instrument for over a century.

In spite of the accessibility of ballpoints and rollerballs, fountain pens have experienced a resurrection in later a long time as the favored writing apparatus for writing devotees, specialists, and collectors. Numerous craftsmen, creators, and experts are moreover including fountain pens to their choice of writing instruments. Presently accessible in more extravagant plans, they are considered works of craftsmanship fair as much as they are composing utensils. Since of the quality and irregularity, fountain pens are rapidly getting to be a status image and embellishment, expecting a work of more than basically a pen.

How does a fountain pen work?

Roughly rearranged, a fountain pen may be a bit like a bottle filled with blue or dark water. Envision attempting to type in something with a bottle of water and it's simple to figure out the science of how a fountain pen works. Assume you take the best off a full water bottle, tip it upside down, and attempt composing your title with it. What happens? The water surges out rapidly—glug-glug-glug!—in approximately 10 seconds level and splashes your page, the work area, the floor, and everything else in locate. The "glugs" aren't me attempting to be amusing: they're important—and we'll come back to them in a moment.

The power of pressure

What if you modified the water bottle so, rather than a moderately huge open neck, it had as it were a little hole at the beat? You'll be able to attempt this for yourself. Go to a lavatory or kitchen where you'll securely make a mess. Take an ancient drinks bottle with a plastic lid, fill it with water, and screw the top on tight. Presently make a little gap within the top with a stick and turn the bottle upside down. You'll discover the water doesn't come out at all (or on the off chance that it does, only incredibly gradually). The reason is straightforward. In spite of the weight of the water pushing down, discuss weight is pushing up within the inverse heading and halting the water from clearing out the bottle. The discuss acts a bit like a finger pushing up and blocking the gap! In case you presently make a moment little gap within the beat of the bottle (the end that's up within the discuss, inverse the lid—the conclusion that's regularly the foot of the bottle), you'll discover the water begins to come out, as you'd anticipate. Air can enter the best of the bottle which allows water to elude from the foot. Cover the discuss gap along with your finger and you'll halt the water streaming out; open the discuss gap and the water dribbles out once more. As you purge water from a bottle, you're filling it with air.

Ink out, air in

Now, most of the time, ready to tip water from a full bottle without making a gap in it... so how does that work? Try it and see. Fill a water bottle and after that modify it. Rather than depleting easily and cleanly, you'll discover the water clears out in jerky glugs, with gigantic discuss bubbles forming and surging up through the water from the foot to the best. What's happening is that discuss needs to enter the bottle as water takes off, so there's a steady battle at the neck between discuss going in and water coming out—and that's what makes the glug-glug-glug commotion. In the event that you tilt the water bottle more toward the even and tip the water out at a shallow point, the discuss can enter at the same time as the water clears out, without them battling over the neck, so the glug noise vanishes.

How does all this relate to a fountain pen? You'll be able likely to see presently that the component of a fountain pen is as much approximately letting discuss in as letting ink out. The feed consolidates a framework of parallel channels, three little ones for ink and one enormous one for discuss, so discuss can stream upward into the store as ink streams down toward the paper at a carefully controlled rate: you get fair sufficient ink to form a great, strong line, not so much that you simply surge the paper, and not so small that the pen doesn't compose at all.

Gravity and capillary action

After you type in with a fountain pen, how does the ink get from the store onto the page? It streams incompletely through gravity (its claim weight pulls it downward), but too through capillary activity (the marvel where a fluid will automatically draw itself along a really lean tube—which is how water rises interior a plant). In case you hold a fountain pen with the nib pointing straight down, gravity doesn't make the ink all pour out, as you might anticipate. That's since the bolster connecting the nib to the reservoir is quite contract. In impact, we have a circumstance just like the plastic bottle filled with water with a little gap punched within the top: ink can't elude from the fountain pen since discuss can't get in.

So how does the ink get out? Once you put the pen’s nib on paper and drag it along, the ink is pulled down an opening within the center of the nib, and down the bolster, by capillary activity. This means it's pulled partly by the adhesive powers between the ink and its holder (the opening within the nib and the three small channels within the bolster) and somewhat by the cohesive powers between every ink atom and the ones taking after on behind it). More ink at that point streams down the nourish from the supply to require its put. Think of it this way on the off chance that you incline toward: as each ink particle hits the paper, it drags on the particles that are fair interior the nib, pulling on them as in spite of the fact that they were linked by a chain, and eventually pulling ink from the bolster and the store. Air enters the write at the same time through the opening within the nib, and moves within the inverse course, steadily filling up the store because it purges of ink.

Parts of a Fountain Pen

​The fountain pen’s notoriety as a special and exquisite composing instrument stems from its particular plan. Not at all like other pens, fountain pens contain a nib, bolster, and ink supply that work in conjunction to control ink flow stream through capillary activity – the development of fluid against a smooth surface against the force of gravity. This same wonder can be found in nature: trees and plants utilize a capillary activity to convey water from their roots to their takes off. Capillary Activity ​creates a smoother more integrator composing involvement that outranks other writing utensils.

  • Nib: The metal end of the write that comes to a point (tip) that conveys water-based ink with contact to paper.
  • ​Feed: ​The feed interfaces the nib to the ink supply. It is found within the area, the space between the nib and the barrel.
  • Ink Reservoir: The ink storage holder. The ink store comes in two essential shapes: the cartridge and the converter.
  • Cap: ​The lid that secures the nib from harm.
  • Barrel: ​The exterior lodging of the write that fits into the hand and ensures the ink reservoir.
Fountain Pen Nib

​Fountain Pen Nib

The fountain pen nib, the level metal piece at the front of the pen that narrows to a point, is very wonderful, with a profoundly complex plan in its possess right. Each portion of the nib – the body, the ink opening, the breather gap, and the tines – has its own purpose.

  • ​Manufacturers utilize the body, or best, of the nib to etch their symbol and the sort of metal utilized within the nib.
  • As fountain pen ink moves from the store through the nourish, it comes to the ink opening. When the ink flow arrives within the ink opening, it runs to the tip of the nib.
  • The breather gap - a little circular or heart-shaped hole at the best of the nib - marks the conclusion of the ink opening, whereas too diminishing stretch on the tip. By permitting discuss to travel up into the ink store as ink voyages down, the breather gap anticipates ink splotches from showing up on your page.
  • The tines are two grooves on the body of the nib, one on each side of the ink opening, which makes it more adaptable. Longer tines make more adaptable nibs, whereas shorter tines make the nib more inflexible.

​The material of the nib also affects its performance.

  • ​Steel may be a more grounded metal, making a sturdier pointed nib that stands up to development from the composing weight. These are best for new fountain pen clients who are utilized to composing with a ballpoint write.
  • ​Gold nibs, be that as it may, write smoother over the paper since it may be a springier fabric.

The variety of nib sizes and shapes makes the fountain pen exceedingly alluring over other pens. Nibs are conversely, so the author can swap the nib with a variety in measure (additional fine to wide, stub to music) without requiring to purchase a brand-new write.

  • ​Extra-fine (XF) – deliver the most slender lines; perform best with circular or sideways nib shapes
  • ​Fine (F) - the fine nib performs best with circular or sideways nib shapes
  • ​Medium (M) – perform best with a stub, sideways, music nib shapes
  • ​Broad (B) – deliver the thickest lines; perform best with a stub, sideways, music nib shapes

​Fountain Pen Feed

​Creating a bridge between the nib and the ink store, the feed conveys the ink from the ink source to the nib. The feed’s two primary components – the blades and the ink channel – control the speed of the ink stream to anticipate ink blotches. A post at the conclusion of the nourish slides into the ink store, sending ink to the nourish. As the ink comes to the nourish, the balances – little edges found within the grip of the pen – capture any overflow of ink because it enters the ink channel. A lean tube interfaces the nourish to the nib, whereas the ink channel conveys ink to the nib by means of capillary action.

Ink Reservoir or Filling Systems

The fountain pen ink reservoir is a container in which ink is stored, ready to be drawn into the pen's feed, and delivered to the nib. Most modern fountain pens use either a cartridge or a converter as the source of ink, and many models are able to use both types of ink supplies. Some fountain pens have a cartridge-type ink bottle system, which uses a reservoir that is part of the pen itself. They are filled with bottled ink and a syringe.

A fountain pen takes ink from a bottle and pushes it into a reservoir inside the pen. The reservoir is reusable, but the cartridge is thrown away when it runs out. A fountain pen converter turns a disposable plastic bottle into a reservoir that users can refill with bottled ink. For the environmentally-conscious writer, fountain pens need converters to function. Some converters are in cartridges that can be inserted into a pen nib, but others are in reservoirs that attach to the pen like a cartridge. To use these additives, ink is pushed up using a squeeze mechanism. Then, pressure or force is applied within the fountain pen ink converter to create a vacuum that draws ink into the reservoir.

The reservoir is the cavity interior of the fountain pen that holds the ink. This portion has seen the foremost advancements over the course of the pen's evolution. We may give a complete article to the various sorts of stores and filling frameworks that you just can find on collectible fountain pens, but for the purposes of this article, we'll stick to the foremost common ones you'll discover in advanced models.

Cartridge. This is often the foremost common type of reservoir in fountain pens nowadays. A cartridge maybe a little, fixed expendable plastic tube that holds the fountain pen ink. When a cartridge runs out of ink, you essentially expel the ancient cartridge and put in an unused one. The best thing about cartridge supplies is the comfort. The drawback is that you just frequently got to depend on the respectability cartridge made for your specific write. Thus, your choices of ink will be more restricted. Too, there's the taken a toll to calculate. Whereas cartridges aren't as well costly, refilling your write yourself can spare you cash within the long run.

Converter. On the off chance that you do not just like the idea of having to purchase modern pen cartridges each time you run out of ink, consider buying a cartridge converter for your fountain pen. A cartridge converter looks lovely much like a cartridge and can fit most cartridge pens, but it encompasses a filling component that permits you to refill it with ink at whatever point you run out. The upside is merely to open yourself up to an assortment of inks to utilize, the drawback is comfort; whereas it's not difficult to fill your cartridge converter, it's certainly more of a bother than basically tossing absent an ancient cartridge and introducing an unused one.

By far the foremost common sort of converter is the screw or piston converter. This converter works thanks to a plunger that's screwed down, at that point up to make suction. The suction made on an upward drag causes the ink to be drawn into the piston filler converter.

Ink Reservoir or Filling Systems
The Hemingway | Handmade Wood and Brass Fountain Pen

Using a Fountain Pen

Other pens have round tips that meet the paper. The ballpoint tip makes a narrow impression on paper while a fountain pen tip creates a broader line. Over time, people discover that even if they start out with a rollerball or ballpoint, they eventually become accustomed to writing with a fountain pen.

​Writing with a Fountain Pen

When writing with a fountain pen, you can choose between attaching the cap to the end of the barrel or leaving it unposted. Many fountain pens feel better balanced attached to the end of the barrel, but others prefer to write with their pens unposted.

Holding a fountain pen correctly is one of the most important aspects of writing with a fountain pen. Place your dominant hand over the section and squeeze it gently with your thumb and middle finger. The pen should rest against the knuckle of your index finger as your other fingers rest on the paper for stability.

Fountain pens need very little pressure to write. Place the nib at a 45-degree angle to the paper. Keep your arm and shoulder rigid while writing with the fountain pen. This slightly awkward writing style will help you produce a perfect letter. When holding the pen properly, the ink will flow out of the tip easily and smoothly onto the paper. A perfect writing position is called the 'sweet spot.' If you're used to using ballpoint pens, don't press too hard on the pen nib. Too much pressure can damage the pen.

Fountain Pen Maintenance

Because of their intricate design, fountain pens need more maintenance than other pens. To keep your pen in pristine condition you need to clean it regularly. The best time to do this is before refilling the ink reservoir of your fountain pen. You should also wash the pen before switching to another type or color of ink.

To clean your fountain pen, twist the section until it disconnects from the barrel. Then, remove the ink reservoir from the pen and soak the nib, and feed in cold or room-temperature water. After rinsing the section and reservoir, give the pen a good shake to remove excess water. After a few hours of use, the glass of water becomes saturated with ink. After a few minutes of boiling, pour in fresh water and stir. Repeat the process until the water remains clear for at least an hour. Store the section, nib down, in a clean, dry glass lined with a paper towel. It will completely dry within 12 to 48 hours.

Once the nib and section have dried, remove the reservoir and replace the barrel. Refill the pen with ink and store it vertically or horizontally in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

Benefits of Writing with a Fountain pen

Although our use of computers has significantly declined, nothing can ever replace the value of a good pen. The writing we do with pen and paper is more important in this day and age than ever before. A fountain pen provides a smoother experience in writing and makes the overall experience of writing pleasure. The fountain pen is a unique writing instrument that is designed to be held in the hand. Because of this design, the pen delivers a smooth writing experience that is comfortable to hold. A fountain pen also requires less pressure than other writing instruments, which prevents painful issues such as cramping and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Benefits of using a fountain pen:

  • ​Smooth immersive writing experience
  • ​Requires little to no pressure to write
  • Rests comfortably in the hand
  • ​Wide selection of inks
  • Variety of ​brands to fit your writing ​lifestyle
  • Designed to last for decades (can be family heirlooms or unique gifts)
  • ​More environmentally friendly and economical in the long run
  • ​Improves handwriting and penmanship

Fountain pens are the writing instrument of choice for a reason. According to writing experts, the shape of the fountain pen produces better cursive handwriting than other styles. The diverse selection of ink and fountain pen styles available to suit each user will enhance the penmanship experience.

Fountain pens are designed to last for generations. Fountain pen manufacturers have created a range of models that are durable and reliable over the long term. Fountain pens are more environmentally conscious than other pens because they do not require frequent replacement as often as ballpoints or gel refills.

For those who get pleasure from writing, the fountain pen is a highly efficient tool of communication. Others may not be so enthusiastic about writing, but they find that a fountain pen encourages them to write more. As technology progresses, it is becoming more and more difficult to communicate in written language. The fountain pen can help us rediscover it.

Difference Between a Ballpoint and Fountain Pen

What’s the Difference Between a Ballpoint and Fountain Pen?

Other than the contrast in components that we’ve fair highlighted, there are very a number of things that set these two pens apart. The primary major distinction is within the liquid ink. Ballpoints utilize a thicker ink that keeps going much longer over time, this will lead to a scratchy composing encounter be that as it may. Fountain Pens utilize a liquid-based ink that doesn’t dry as rapidly. It does permit the write to stream more easily.

You’re right that ballpoints were invented first and that there is a segment of the population who prefers fountain pens. But you’re wrong that fountain pens are more ideal for handwriting because they allow for better writing. You can tell how well someone writes with a ballpoint or gel pen by simply looking at his or her work, but it’s impossible to tell with a fountain pen.

Ballpoint pens are the preferred writing instrument for many people because they can write on paper, glass, plastic, and metal. Fountain pens can only write on paper. This is because fountain pens are made with only one type of tine. If you write on something other than paper, your fountain pen will damage the nib.

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