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Hey pen friends!
I hope you all had a great weekend! I spent mine working and also enjoyed some quality time with family. All in all, it was lovely!
Today, I wanted to take some time to expand on my latest video, How To Clean Your Fountain Pen For Beginners.
In this video, I cover the basic process of cleaning out three different kinds of fountain pens including:
But there are some nuances and additional tips that I didn't get a chance to cover, so let's dive into them here!
WHY SHOULD I CLEAN MY FOUNTAIN PEN?
When you purchase a fountain pen, you're really purchasing an elevated writing experience. And with that comes maintenance! If you're coming over from the world of ballpoints, rollerballs, and gel pens, this may seem like a lot of work in comparison. You may be used to simply tossing out the empty cartridge, popping in a new one, and getting on with writing straight away. And while you most certainly can do that with a fountain pen, there's just a bit of extra care that needs to happen so that you can continue writing along happily.
Fountain pens simply require more care to function optimally. That may seem cumbersome, (I certainly thought that in the beginning) but once you've got the hang of it, it can add more enjoyment to your fountain pen experience.
WHEN SHOULD YOU CLEAN YOUR FOUNTAIN PEN?
The answer to this will vary. Depending on the type of fountain pen and ink your'e using and how frequently you use it can determine how often you need to clean it. Generally speaking, every 2-4 weeks is recommended. However, I find myself cleaning out my fountain pens less often than that. For some context, I use my fountain pens every day for planning and journaling. The amount of writing done is what I would consider to be light to moderate use. It should also be noted that the inks I'm currently using are fairly well-behaved with no outstanding properties and I like to write with my fountain pens until empty before changing out the inks.
If you are changing your ink frequently, then you will need to clean your fountain pen frequently. Anytime you change the ink, you want to make sure you clean out your fountain pen thoroughly beforehand to avoid any unwanted mixing of colors. Also, if you are using shimmering inks or inks with special properties, you'll want to keep an eye on those fountain pens and clean them out more regularly to avoid clogging issues.
It is also recommended that you flush out new fountain pens before you ink them up. While most, if not all manufacturers have some sort of flushing process, it's good to clean out your fountain pens when you first receive them. This can help mitigate any flow issues from the start that you may experience otherwise. A good example of this would be with Lamy fountain fountain pens. They'e pretty well known for having a bit of blue ink on their fountain pens when you first buy them and that's due to their quality control process. I believe they do flush out their pens before sending them off for sale, but you can often find some ink residue left over.
WHAT IS PEN FLUSH AND DO I NEED TO USE IT?
Pen flush is a solution specially-formulated for cleaning out your fountain pens. If you find that you're having a hard time cleaning out your fountain pens with just water, perhaps you're using inks with other special properties or that are known to stain, then pen flush is a great option!
Personally, I have yet to use pen flush in any of my fountain pens. I do like to use shimmering ink on occasion (and admittedly, have let some of it dry up in some of my fountain pens *gasp*), but have had no problems just flushing it out with water. (:
These are just some additional things to keep in mind when caring for your precious fountain pens. They are called fine writing instruments for a reason and with the proper maintenance, can last a lifetime.
What fountain pen(s) do you need to clean next? Let me know in the comments below!
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