Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Tyco in Clothing
I'm...too sexy for my shirt.
Tyco in Clothing

Tyco in Clothing

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Shades of Tuesday

Shades of Tuesday
In the Clairefontaine pencil pouch (review & buy): PaperMate InkJoy 100, Martha Stewart Dual Calligraphy Marker, Pilot Hi-Tec-C 0.4mm (review & buy), Pentel GraphGear 500 0.3mm Drafting Pencil (buy), Uni-Ball Signo 0.7mm.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Levenger Product Review: L-Tech Fountain Pen - Medium

The Levenger L-Tech fountain pen is the first fountain pen I've used that is made by Levenger. As such, I obviously don't have a wide range of experience with different Levenger pens and nibs, so please take my review with a grain of salt.

Levenger says the L-Tech fountain pen puts the tangible pleasure of a well-crafted precision tool in your hand. I couldn't agree more! At first glance, this fountain pen very much resembles a drafting type utensil that an engineer or architect would use.The pictures on Levenger's site does not do this pen justice. It looks way cooler in person.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen
Nice soft bed and strap
Brand: Levenger
Model: L-Tech
Body Material: Brass barrel with metallic finish
Trim: Metal
Length (capped): 5.39"
Length (posted): 6.65"
Diameter (body): 0.5"
Diameter (grip): 0.39"
Nib type: Medium
Nib material: Stainless steel
Weight: 1.7 oz/47 g (with ink)
Barrel design: Faceted
Fill type: Cartridge/converter (comes with pen)

Packaging

I liked the simple but pretty packaging of the L-Tech fountain pen. The box is very tasteful and attractive. Of course, it arrived in several different boxes before I actually made it to the real packaging... The only disappointment there being it was a waste of materials. I think for the price point of the pen ($79.00), the packaging it came in was appropriate and fair. I have more expensive fountain pens that came in lesser packaging.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Innards
Pamphlet with information how to insert cartridge or converter.
The converter has Levenger written on it. It is quite functional and simple. 
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Parts
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Converter
Appearance & Build

The L-Tech has 7 facets on the body and a matching cap - all of which line up when either capped or capped. This was very pleasing to my OCD side. The clip is well integrated into the cap, and is color-matched. The clip also has Levenger written on it, quite tastefully. It's the only part of the pen that has a marking.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen
Capped.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen
Posted.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen
Underside of clip.
The substantial weight to this pen no doubt comes from the brass body. As it has a metallic silver finish, you wouldn't even think twice about the body until you pick the pen up and realize how heavy it is. Surprisingly, I was able to write comfortably with it, despite its weight. The only time it became uncomfortable to write with was when I posted it - it was too top-heavy, given how low I hold my pens when I write. If you have large hands, I don't foresee this being a huge problem for you.

The construction is solid. There were no visible flaws on the pen and all the small details (such as the threading and knurled grip) were clean and well made. Speaking of threads, removing the cap is quick and easy - just a short turn. I love this feature. I like the snugness and security of a threaded cap but I hate having to turn a cap many times to remove it or replace it.

I do have concerns about the finish and how long it will last. With proper care, I imagine it will be okay, but it is inevitable that at some point it may be dinged by something. Or maybe it won't show marks! We will see.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen With Others
Top to bottom: Levenger L-Tech fountain pen, Graf-Von Faber Castell Anello Titanium, Lamy Studio, Pelikan M1005 Demonstrator.
Nib

The nib is not really anything outstanding to look at, but I wasn't expecting it to be. It is a medium nib which I think is a true medium. It says Levenger on it, as well as "Medium Germany" in itty bitty writing. At least... I think it says Germany...
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Top
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Nibs
Top to bottom: Levenger L-Tech fountain pen, Graf-Von Faber Castell Anello Titanium, Lamy Studio, Pelikan M1005 Demonstrator.
I popped in the Levenger ink cartridge that came with the pen without any sort of "priming" - no washing or anything. I was impressed that the pen wrote right away. However, I did find the cartridge to be a little on the dry side and a few times while writing, I had to shake some ink down into the feed. Once I did that, the pen wrote comfortably and consistently. No skipping and not scratchy. I did like the response from the nib - but it is not a flexible nib. After a paragraph of writing, the ink petered out again and I had to shake it through the feed, in which it resumed writing nicely. Given that once the ink hits the nib, it writes well, I'm guessing this is a cartridge issue and I suspect the pen will write better with a converter (supplied with pen).

Update: Problem solved. A simple rinse with water and a tiny bit of dish soap has cleared up the issue. Writes like a charm!
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Writing Sample
 Medium, no flex steel nib.
Sheila asked in her comment if the nib is swappable with the Levenger True Writers, and indeed they are!

Writing 

I was surprised how pleasant it was to write with this pen. It's the first Levenger fountain pen I've ever used, and based on its size and weight, I guess I was expecting some sort of tank. Alas, no! Once the ink reached the nib, I found my cursive just came naturally with this pen. Eventually the ink petered out and I had to shake some through the feed, but once I did that, it flowed nicely. I could not write with the cap posted, it was just too heavy and threw off my uniformed writing.
Levenger L-Tech Fountain Pen Writing Sample
I may have rambled uselessly, but you get the picture.
Update: I will flush the pen and re-ink it. I just wanted to give a first impression of the nib and writing without having to do anything to it. A first-time fountain pen user might not consider or know about flushing a pen before using it. (Thank you Sheila for mentioning this in your comment!)

Price
Levenger - $79.00

Overall
I was overall impressed with the Levenger L-Tech fountain pen. All my expectations of Levenger quality was riding on this pen. I think this fountain pen is well-made, very solid, writes fairly well, and it looks good. It's not badly priced either, given its construction, and that you receive a converter with it. I would recommend this fountain pen on this basis, though I do warn you it's a heavy pen.

If fountain pens aren't your thing, the L-Tech is also available in a rollerball, ballpoint, and pencil as well!

Disclaimer: I was provided this fountain pen free of charge for the purposes of my review by Levenger. I was not compensated in any other way. All opinions remain my own.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday Reads - October 28. 2012

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Kickstarter: Allegory Pens - The Precision Collection

Allegory Pens is back with another wicked set of pens for funding on Kickstarter! I'm drooling over this batch even more than a healthy person should (do healthy people drool over pens?... Duh. Of course they do).

Allegory Pens says:
  • Our motto: Pens with a legacy, so you can leave yours. All our writing instruments are made with woods that have a story which is meant to connect with your story, so that you have something personally meaningful right out of the box.
  • All the woods we use are reclaimed or salvaged, none are fresh cut lumber.
  • We plant a tree through The National Forest Foundation for every 10 pens we sell.
  • All the refills in our pens are standard models that are readily available.
  • Each pen comes with an insert that explains the stories behind the woods.
  • We are die-hard believers that carrying well-made, personally meaningful objects with you on a daily basis can make your day better.
The Precision Collection comes with a few choices - ballpoint, mechanical pencil, gel pen, and yes, fountain pens! Some of these including the stylus as an available add-on. But I'll just show you a sexy picture, and you can go look at the Kickstarter project which explains everything far more eloquently than my rambles could.
You can pledge up to $1,500 (or more) but of course, you can get a reward starting at $10. Pens start at $39.

Follow Allegory Pens
Website
Facebook
Twitter

KICKSTART!

Kuretake Brush Writers & Pentel Brush Pen Doodles

A looong time ago, I won a Lamy Joy Calligraphy fountain pen 1.1mm from JetPens. They also sent along two Kuretake Brush Writers - one in black and one in silver. They currently have similar brush writers though I suspect newer models - and they're on clear out! So I highly recommend you pick up a few!

After I first "reviewed" them, I wasn't sure how to use them so I kind of stuck them in a box for over a year. Guess what? They haven't dried out one bit. Super awesome. I also had a Pentel Metallic brush pen I had bought in undergrad so it's a good.... well. It's old. I don't want to give away my age here. I took these three brush writers and made some doodles with them!
Kuretake and Pentel Brush Writers
The utensils.
Brush Doodle - Bird Tail
I'm not very good at this, okay? I can hear you snickering.
Brush Doodle - Raven
Well. I thought this was a raven but now it kind of looks like a hideous baby bird.
Brush Doodle - Bird
I was just trying to mix up the colors.
Brush Doodles - Various
I actually rather like the hands here. They're eerie. The theme was jewelry.
Get Your Own!
Pentel Metallic Brush Pen - $7.90
Kuretake Brush Blendable Brush Writers - $7.00 at JetPens

Friday, October 26, 2012

Whiskers & Paws: October 2012 Edition

Tyco Behind the Door
Doing what he does best.
Tyco Behind Door, Confused.
Being lost behind doors.
Tyco Behind Door...Again
Tyco? You stuck?
Tyco Close Up
I AM TEH CRAZED!
Tyco on Tree
Also floofy.
Koa and Peaches
What's that smell?
Koa and Peaches
I dunno.
Koa and Peaches
Hm.
Koa and Peaches Grooming
I think it's you.
Koa and Peaches Grooming
You are soiled.
Koa and Peaches
Yeah. It's you.
Koa and Peaches On The Wheel
I RUN AWAY!
Peaches Getting Ready to Go
On the go.
Peaches
Pads!
Peaches Looks Around
Contemplating.
Ellie, Tyco, and Peaches
What's over here?
Ellie
*flies buzzing*
Ellie
I work out.
Koa and Ellie
Snuggle pals.
Koa Lump
Classic Koa lump.
Koa Listening
EHHH?
Koa Falling Asleep
Sleepy boy.
Koa Awake
Hears another cat coming upstairs. Becomes alert boy.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

First Annual Fountain Pen Day: Friday, November 2. 2012

Fountain Pen Day is the newest and coolest thing to hit the calendar! It is to be celebrated on the first Friday in November. This year, the first annual Fountain Pen Day will be held on Friday, November 2nd, 2012. Taking a day to embrace, promote, and share fountain pens and the handwritten arts.

Fountain Pen Day

Check out the official Fountain Pen Day page!
Join the Fountain Pen Day Facebook group or follow on Twitter!

Who's Celebratin'?

A whoooole bunch of vendors! Check out Fountain Pen Day's list of sponsors and some of the discounts and promos going on. Check out other blogs who are celebrating Fountain Pen Day too!

FPD2012
Image from FountainPenDay.org

How will you celebrate Fountain Pen Day?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Tyco in Lounge Chair
This is when we first moved to Texas and our stuff hadn't arrived yet...so we bought lounge chairs. Which Tyco took.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Giveaway at Notebook Stories

Notebook Stories is having a giveaway of PaperBack Note notebooks! Click here for details to enter!

Please Share!

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Creative Commons License
GourmetPens by Azizah Asgarali is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at http://www.gourmetpens.com.