Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Montblanc Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Limited Edition Ink

I have often been perplexed by ink colors named after famous figures from history. Why is DeAtramentis Edgar Allen Poe a green color is one of those questions that gives me a headache. I could name others but it is what it is. When this Antoine de Saint-Exupéry limited edition ink was released by Montblanc, I was intrigued but all of the ink swatches online did nothing for me. A friend of mine has this ink and allowed me a sample and that is when I wanted to know more as I liked it.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was a French writer and pioneering aviator. It appears he is most notably known for his novella The Little Prince. What I did not know what that Antoine was pilot, namely commercially before WWII and then was a pilot in the war flying reconnaissance missions. He flew for the French before the German armistice in 1940 and then again for the Free French Air Force in North Africa until 1944 when he was shot down around the Mediterranean.

I do love a good story when it comes to ink but how does this rich burgundy color relate to this famous person? According to Montblanc, the color is inspired by the color of the desert at sunset. Oddly Montblanc terms this color a dark saffron which is more crimson to me and this looks like a dark burgundy.

It has some sheen when there is a substantial amount of ink deposited on the paper but all in all it is a nicely saturated ink but it is not crimson.

It flows nicely, as do most Montblanc inks that I have tried and it behaves well. I tried it on Midori MD paper, Clairefontaine, Rhodia, Tomoe River, Leuchtturm, Franklin-Christoph and 100g Col-O-Ring paper without bleed, feather or spread issues. 

The color is similar to some other burgundy colors but definitely has more blue in it, compared to the others, for a more purple-like base. 

Out of these four inks, the Noodlers American Aristocracy was the closest candidate, well this bottle anyways. Sailor Oku-Yama is a beautiful burgundy but the sheen took over here. 

I really love the color and I find the story behind it or more the inspiration behind it quite interesting. I believe I need to buy a bottle here as I do not have a burgundy quite like it. I may have an ink problem....but ...but...I can quit whenever I want!

This is based off of my experience and opinion. I do not represent Montblanc nor am I being compensated in any way.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Franklin-Christoph Model 66 Stabilis - Solid Ice

I guess it is safe to say that I really love Franklin-Christoph's products. The 66 Solid Ice is my third F-C pen and that goes along with my F-C inks and journal. This review will also showcase some customer service points as I had a goofy cap. Let's take a peek.

This is the 66 Stabilis fountain pen in the Solid Ice finish. A very attractive pen and I had to jump on this pen when I saw this finish was available. The Italian Ice and Antique Glass finishes are special and have waiting lists for them but this one works for me.

After unboxing this pen, as seen above, I noticed that the cap was goofy. It was very frosted and was more so on the threads then elsewhere as well as some areas in the cap that did not have the frost.

I emailed this picture to Franklin-Christoph wondering if this was normal for this finish and the response I received was a resounding no. Now customer service can make or break a company, regardless of the business you are in. The service experience I went through with Franklin-Christoph was exceptional here. The email response was within 10 minutes of my sending and they offered to send me a new cap. All I had to do was send the wonky cap back upon receipt of the new one. This may not sound like much but what I greatly love here is that I did not have to send the entire pen back for the exchange to happen which seems to be the norm elsewhere. Phenomenal. Oh and when I received the new cap, the box already has a USPS Priority shipping label on it so I do not have to pay for shipping. Great service here Mandy and Franklin-Christoph!

Loving the new cap!

The pen itself is their longest pen and for someone with larger hands, this is perfect. It feels well balanced, has a nice weight and writes like a champ. The pen itself does not have a clip but the pen body has a nice flat area on one side that keeps it in place and at rest on a desk with the pen model listed in it.

I decided to eyedropper this pen since it is clear and I personally dislike seeing a converter in a clear pen. I put some silicone grease on the section threads and filled it with Franklin-Christoph Terra Firma initially but then moved to Franklin-Christoph Loden as I believe it looks so much better in this pen.

The nib I went with was a steel broad and oh man is this nib wet, juicy and super smooth. It has a generous flow but not excessively so and it is legible in normal writing.

I have nothing but praise for this pen and this company. High quality products, great customer service and one happy customer. I have three F-C pens at the moment, but I will continue to buy more from Franklin-Christoph in the future.

This review is based off of my experience and opinion. I do not represent Franklin-Christoph nor am I being compensated in any way.