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Thread: Why buy a new pen?

  1. #21
    FPG Donor ♕ KrazyIvan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    I have not purchased a pen since January 2018. With that said, when I did buy pens, I purely based my buying decision on the aesthetics of the pen. If the pen was pleasing to my eye, I would buy it with a bold nib or the largest nib width I could find so I could grind the nib to my liking.
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    Senior Member Lady Onogaro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Quote Originally Posted by penwash View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Onogaro View Post
    The last two pens I bought were a Lamy Safari and a Lamy Joy, mostly because I just liked the look of them and didn't have them in my collection of pens. I don't buy Safaris in every color--I held out on the pastels until they had them at Endless Pens for $13.99, and then I said "why not?" Same with the Joy for $19.99 or around about. Other than that, I haven't bought any pens in a while, though I did think seriously about the Pelikan White Tortoise over on CultPens because it's been kind of a grail pen, but then I said no, even if the price is wonderful right now ($177 or so when I last checked for US). I just didn't want to spend that much money when I had plans to go to the Dallas Pen Show to see my pen people. So I don't know what category that puts me in. Maybe 1?
    Don't forget to say hi to me as well, Lady O. !!
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  5. #23
    Senior Member Sailor Kenshin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Number 4?

    I buy a lot of pens. I always do stick to a budget. But while I keep a horrifyingly high number, I also sell or donate a lot of them. It's like the tide, in and out, fluid.

    I have to stop myself from buying those pastel Safaris, though.

  6. #24
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zou View Post
    The genuine truth is I'm most likely to buy a pen if I start watching videos about pens or reading reviews. There's no point over rationalizing it and acting like I'm really making a decision. 99% of the reason to buy something is because something somewhere planted a desire in me to have it, it's not economically hard on me, and I wanted the feeling of desire to go away even if I know that probably my happiness won't increase for very long after acquiring it.

    The answer has basically never been that there's anything wrong with the pens I already have or that I'm not satisfied with them. It's honestly the opposite, I like the pens I have, and so I end up engaging in these weird meta activities around the pens.

    But yes, of course when I buy a pen I'm either looking for a spare of something I really like or something I haven't tried before that I'm curious about.

    What is strange to me is that although traditional advertising has not had a huge impact on my purchasing decisions, these very long user reviews done by people who buy every pen there is and have no right to actually give advice on selecting a pen, because they have never made a selection regarding pens in their life, are somehow extremely effective at making me want a pen. Probably because of the sheer amount of time spent thinking about it.
    This is true for me, too. So I have stopped watching reviews of pens over $150. I have never bought a pen over $115, and now I don't even want to hear about the big beautiful things out there. I don't miss them if I don't see them.

    Sent from my Moto E (4) using Tapatalk

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  8. #25
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_of_Clouds View Post
    I hadn't considered the potential correlation between collecting and the advent of pen shows. Likely because I had never heard of the shows until just a few years ago.
    Indeed the collectors are the ones who made the pen shows a reality.

    I help out at the Dallas Pen Club. Next month, is the club's 26th year of doing pen shows. There are people in the club who still remembered when they just held a little meeting here and there back in the late 80's.

    Apparently before pen shows were even possible, the collectors relied on each other and traveling antique dealers ("pickers" is what we call them sometimes in the US), who would find lots of vintage pens hidden in a house/barn/garage that are sold them to these collectors.

    Without those persistent and resourceful early collectors, today, we won't have pen community, pen shows, pen celebrities, tons of inks to play with, and yes, internet fora dedicated to this hobby.

    This is why sometimes I got irked at disparaging remarks regarding the collection aspect of the hobby.
    - Will
    A new place to shop for restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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  10. #26
    Senior Member Sailor Kenshin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    It's similar with inks. I'd better steer clear of reviews; reviews made me long for Lamy Petrol ink and convince myself it was going to be THEE greeny ink for My Entire Life.

    And I never got along with it. It's just lifeless and dark and sullen and uncooperative and lies there like sludge. I'm almost glad that Birmingham Duquesne Incline is now Unobtainium, and that I don't want to buy a whole bottle of MB Swan Plume Illusion.

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  12. #27
    Senior Member Voiren's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Any of the above, but with the additional factor that an ur-hobby is more-or-less bargain hunting. So I get very happy when I find a desired pen (of which there are many) at a very good price! It adds an ongoing little extra bit of satisfaction to that pen every time I use it.

    I collect for exploration, as well - I don't so much have a collection focus or a list of gaps I'm trying to fill, just when I get interested in a particular type of pen, I'll try and get hold of some versions of it at the user-grade end. (So I suspect my collection is going to get an awful lot bigger before it starts getting smaller). And I find fixing pens satisfying, so I want to learn more restoration techniques.

    My budget is high enough that I can generally get what I want, I just have to decide if I'm willing to pay it. I have been considering the "should I get fewer more expensive pens, or more cheaper ones?" aspect. Complicated by the fact that I do like vintage pens, and once you start getting into the few hundreds for modern pens, you could get some really really nice vintage pens... (And of course some really nice vintage pens are extremely cheap).

    I'm not a Visconti owner, though I have been briefly tempted by those who are! (Pen club has been terrible for my price ceiling!)

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  14. #28
    Senior Member TAYLORPUPPY's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    I fall into category #1. I base my purchases solely on looks. I do like the pens I buy to have broad nibs.
    Iíve tried but I just canít seem to get excited about vintage pens. With the exception of a 1948 Parker 51, everything I buy is new and shiny. I also like to buy Notebooks. Different sizes and colors


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    I mostly buy my pen based on impulse so I think I belong to number one this is why I have to keep myself from browsing the shops because I get easily lure and be attracted with pens. Most of the pens I bought are within my personal budget because I can't resist soemthing good within a reasonable price.

  16. #30
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    My pen buying habits vary.

    India - I spent a lot of my trip hunting down pens in the bazars and visiting pen manufacturers and shops. On one occasion I pretty much bought a vendor's entire stock of Guiders. That was a fascinating trip and I got to see places tourists don't go, met some wonderful people, and ended up with some nice pens as well as a lot of fun cheapies.

    On safari - going to flea markets and vides-greniers and junk shops and seeing what happens. Sometimes wonderful things (my 1 euro Waterman red ripple) and sometimes not so wonderful (but still not bad, Waterman Hemispheres and Kulturs for pennies, or a 30 euro Parker 75 set still in its box).

    Broken bits - yes, I'm a scrounger in the parts box at every pen show. I'm gradually getting better and better at fixing things. And I have a regular search for "fountain pen repair" on ebay, though it's not been very productive recently.

    As for new / modern pens, I tend to have a wants list that has artisan makers quite high up on it, a few sets to complete (Kaweco sport arts still missing the rosit and amecitrin, for instance), and some pen makers that I love and will buy if I see a bargain. So

    1. I saw this fabulous pen and just had to buy it - yes, if it's on ebay or classifieds or at a sale.

    2. I wanted to buy a new pen (in general), so I went looking for one - always!!!

    3. I wanted a nib that performed in a specific way, so looked for that - yes, but I also buy nibs for swapping into pens. Being able to swap nibs over is something I didn't do for years and I wonder why not - it's so easy, and it means if you can only find the pen of your dreams with a boring M nib and you really want flex or big fat stub, you can get it (albeit sometimes at a fairly stiff entry fee).

    But then I'd have to add

    4. Completism and mini collections,

    5. Trying something new. With Pelikan, it took off in a big way. With Aurora, not so much (yet).

  17. #31
    Senior Member calamus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    I don't really understand why I've accumulated as many fountain pens as I have. I don't collect them, and the number isn't huge by the standards of many people on this forum ó slightly over a dozen, maybe 15 or so ó but I have more than I need.
    Quid rides? Mutato nomine de te fabula narratur. ó Horace
    (What are you laughing at? Just change the name and the jokeís on you.)

  18. #32
    Senior Member Lloyd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    The same reason we buy enough ink to fill a swimming pool....and then want more.

    If there are any typos in this post, I blame Tapatalk!
    M: I came here for a good argument.
    A: No you didn't; no, you came here for an argument.
    M: An argument isn't just contradiction.
    A: It can be.
    M: No it can't. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition.
    A: No it isn't.
    M: Yes it is! It's not just contradiction.
    A: Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position.
    M: Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'
    A: Yes it is!
    M: No it isn't!

  19. #33
    Senior Member Empty_of_Clouds's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    That's a good point, calamus, and one with which I can identify.

    Fairly early on in my exploration of fountain pens I realised that I can write with pretty much any kind of nib - from sharp to Sharpie! Once that was understood the question for me concerned my preferences. Okay, so this isn't a narrow choice either, as I 'prefer' extra fines, fines, stubs and italics (in varying widths). Beyond this I do look at the aesthetic of the pen. Here little can be said because taste is just taste. However, as with nib types, I prefer certain pen dimensions over others despite being able to use more or less any sized pen (if I had to).


    So, to your point, calamus. I too have about a dozen pens. Why? I suspect that in my case it is because I want to use a varied selection of ink colours without having to empty a pen first. In this respect I actually lay the blame for my 'collection' at the door of the ink enablers. And of course I like lots of colours, even though a single one would suffice for my writing purposes (okay then, two!).

    How is this related to buying new pens? Well, the last pen I bought was a Wing Sung piston-filled demonstrator. This was purchased exclusively for use with red ink (as this is a colour I use only in specific and limited tasks). It's a demonstrator because I was attracted to the idea of a pen that looks like a syringe full of blood (hehe!), and it's a Wing Sung partly because I am cheap, and partly because I didn't think it worth spending more money on a pen that would only ever get sporadic use.


    Sometimes this all sounds terribly pragmatic, rather than the more usual hedonistic urge of a hobby.
    Last edited by Empty_of_Clouds; August 15th, 2019 at 04:20 PM.

  20. #34
    Senior Member VertOlive's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Years ago I was working with a Cuban mathematician to help him to lose his heavy accent. He told me about his first year working for an American engineering firm. He saved up his first paychecks, cashed them all at once and spread the money on his bed. The he rolled in it naked.

    This is why pens.
    "Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life"?óMary Oliver

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  22. #35
    Senior Member Lloyd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    If you're planning to roll around naked on a lot of fountain pens, please make sure they're capped.

    If there are any typos in this post, I blame Tapatalk!
    M: I came here for a good argument.
    A: No you didn't; no, you came here for an argument.
    M: An argument isn't just contradiction.
    A: It can be.
    M: No it can't. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition.
    A: No it isn't.
    M: Yes it is! It's not just contradiction.
    A: Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position.
    M: Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'
    A: Yes it is!
    M: No it isn't!

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  24. #36
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Quote Originally Posted by VertOlive View Post
    Years ago I was working with a Cuban mathematician to help him to lose his heavy accent. He told me about his first year working for an American engineering firm. He saved up his first paychecks, cashed them all at once and spread the money on his bed. The he rolled in it naked.
    And THAT is exactly why I use sanitizing gel on my hands every time I handle money. No telling where those dollars have been.

    For the last pen I bought, a Swan SM-1, it was for reason #3. I needed a pen with a nib for a very specific purpose. And yes, the Swan performed perfectly for the dozens of A4 pages I had to write daily for almost a one month period.
    Last edited by junglejim; August 15th, 2019 at 10:42 PM.

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  26. #37
    Senior Member fountainpenkid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    At this point, I buy new pens for one of 2 reasons:
    1. I want to try something new that inspires me as both a piece of beautiful design and a brilliant writing instrument. My 'bar' in these respects is quite high but has also become quite specific as I've learned what I just don't like.
    2. Reacquisition of a pen model I've had some degree of extended experience with and that I can't get out of my head for above reasons.

    What interests me is how different my answer would've been just a few years ago. I used to buy modern and vintage--anything under $200--pretty frequently on the recommendation of reviews and anecdotes here and on FPN. A pen purchase was not without a strong social component. My belief was that a good pen for most was a good for me (there could only be a select few), and that, on the whole, the concept was pretty objective. In this way, these purchases were also surprisingly divorced from the reality of my own experience. If forum 'consensus' had it that the Parker "51" was the best pen to use on a daily basis, I felt a strange compulsion to continue buying them even as I knew--and wasn't willing to admit--that they weren't the best for me.
    I also, nonsensically, understood my preferences prescriptively. This was worst when it came to section girth: deciding that my thin fingers must prefer thin sections, I cast aside thick-sectioned pens as "not right for me." As this tended to make purchasing cheaper, I stuck my head in the sand about it for too long.
    The last part of this was my (again social) interest in "trying the new thing." There are fads here like anywhere else, and I was wont to engage with them when I could afford it. I would buy all the new TWSBI releases for that reason, blindly hoping they would work well for me although they shared little in common with the pens I liked using.
    What mostly brought me towards my current purchasing attitude was trying a number of very good pens, mostly vintage, and many with thicker sections. In other words, spending more money, pushing well past the long-standing $200 limit. Go figure.
    Last edited by fountainpenkid; August 29th, 2019 at 08:56 PM.
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  28. #38
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    I just counted thirteen pens. Donít wanna be unlucky, so itís good that I just bought another Liliput.

    More or less, a 2. (And, yeah, thatís just two briefcases. Theyíre neater, now.)

  29. #39
    Senior Member dneal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Wife: whyíd you buy a new pen?

    Me: the old one ran out of ink...

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    Default Re: Why buy a new pen?

    Why buy a new pen? Because it's there!


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