- Your Midori
- A repair kit which comes with four elastics and the little end cap that holds the elastics in place
- A hammer
- A pair of scissors (not featured in photo due to a lack of organization on my part)
- Around 15 minutes, especially if it's your first time. After that, you could probably do it in around 5 minutes or less.
***As always, we've been busy around here, packing up orders, saying hello to visitors and new folks trying out pens in the shop. We just got in our latest Field Notes' order, including the winter special edition Snowblind, which changes colour from white to blue when you hold it in sunlight. I don't know how they keep coming up with these ideas, those crazy folks at Field Notes. I made my first Chinese-style steamed fish dinner last night, which also involved my first time gutting a whole fish in the kitchen sink. Let's just say next time will involve a sharper kitchen knife, which I would've known had I watched the Youtube video before I did the deed. Here I was thinking this is one of those things that just come instinctively to Asian women in the kitchen. I meant to write this blog post yesterday, and I wish I could say I had a good reason why I didn't get it up, like we just got a big shipment in of something exciting, or I was fixing someone's pen, or I was re-organizing all of our shipping supplies, but it's really because I got in a box of washi tapes I'd ordered online the night before, and left it on my table. Caleb had pulled the box off the table in the morning, and I spent 85% of my expendable time looking for this one lost roll. I found it in Caleb's "tool box," which (joke's on him) might actually be perfect vessel for holding washi tape rolls. Every cloud has a silver lining.
For wetter flow, push the nib and feed closer together, and closer in. For drier flow, pull the nib and feed further apart, and slightly further out. And then keep fiddling.I generally suggest sitting down and getting ready to get your hands really inky the first time, and then you may have to do small adjustments later, but you hope the bulk of the adjustment is done. You may have to do more adjusting later if you change the ink, or if you're giving it a thorough washing by taking out the nib and feed. Supplies: - Noodler's Flex Fountain Pen, in this case we're using the Ahab in Topkapi - Ink - you may want two or more inks just in case you get bad luck and the first ink you pick is not so good in your Ahab - we're using Stormy Grey - Ink Syringe (if you're filling as an eyedropper) - Silicone Grease (if you're filling as an eyedropper) Step One: Pull your nib and feed out and give them a nice soapy bath. Remember when you're putting it back in that the Ahab has a grove where the nib fits in, and it won't fit in properly if it's not lined up. In the photo below, you can see that the nib would fit at the top. Step Two: Fill the pen with ink. If this is the first time with the pen, I generally recommend using the converter because you won't have to waste as much ink if you end up dumping it, but more importantly, you can use the converter to "prime the feed" a bit by pushing it down and forcing ink through as you're testing. Obviously this is not the long term solution, to have to continually push down on the converter, but it may be helpful as you're trying to adjust. If you're filling as an eyedropper, put some silicone grease around the threads of the barrel (to prevent leaking) and put some ink directly in the barrel. You won't have any option to push more ink through, but you get a LOT of ink. Step 3: Start writing and see how it does. You may find that it writes fine if you're not flexing too much, but the more you flex, the more problems you may have. If you just need the tiniest bit of variation as you're writing, then maybe you don't need any adjustment at all! Or you may have found the golden ticket pen and it writes and flexes with no problem. If not, don't worry! Especially at first, give your Ahab some time! Don't just write a few strokes with it and then adjust it right away if it's not writing for your the way you like - the ink flow may need a few moments to settle and fill your feed, and get flowing properly. Try a few strokes, a few sentences, wait a bit. You can try pressing a cloth to the nib and feed to draw some ink through. However, at a certain point, you just know it's not going to give anymore, so, you adjust. Step 4: Pulling the nib in and out, also known as, when the fingers start to get inky. Give it some time and a LOT of writing. You may find that it blobs and then starts railroading, so is it too wet or too dry?? It may just be that the feed needs some more time to regulate the flow, so a bit more writing to try and even it out before you figure out how to adjust it next. Keep going and adjusting. Write, write, write, give your pen a chance for some flow, and then write some more. Adjust slightly, and then see how it does. This is a pen that does best with a healthy dose of love and patience, so if it railroads, give it a few more strokes before you adjust it again. I personally like my Ahab nice and wet (if you watch the video above, you'll see how wet the ink is!), which occasionally results in blobs of ink, but I like it wet so my inks show lots of shading. Keeping this in mind, I generally use higher quality paper with my Ahab so it doesn't become a hot mess. I also find a bit of ink in my cap every once in a while (I'm not sure if the two are related, I think it's probably more to do with the fact that I knock around my Ahab quite a bit). This tugging the nib a bit in or out is literally all I do with my Ahab if I've changed the ink and I find the flow isn't what I'd like. Step 5: If this all isn't working, you can trying heat-setting your nib and feed. Heat up some water so it's hot, just off boiling, and dip your nib and feed in. You can hold it there for a minute or two, which should soften up the ebonite feed a bit. Press together firmly, so the nib and feed will end up cooling and re-hardening against each other. You may end up trying this a few times, but remember to give the testing a fair shake before you re-adjust as it may just need a few minutes for the ink flow to really regulate. Your Noodler's flex pen will probably not ever write like a vintage flex pen, not as soft, or with as consistent a flow, but with a bit of adjustment it can do pretty well. You may also have to slow down a bit as you write, but the more you write with your pen, the more you'll get to know exactly how much you can ask of it. Eventually over time, you may find that your Noodler's flex nib will soften up, and not be quite as stiff as it was when you first got it. One last thing to keep in mind about your Noodler's pen: some inks may just not be great in it, and they never will be. Just like you may know one of your pens is a bit of a dry writer or a wet writer or a pen likes a particular ink, even more so for a Noodler's Flex Pen where the ink flow is so variable. One ink may work in your Clear Ahab, but strangely not in your Apache Tortoise Ahab. It's a bit of trial and error. In my Ahab, I've had to come to terms with the fact that J. Herbin Ambre de Birmanie, my favourite of all shading inks, is just not going to work in my current Ahab. It was a long road to acceptance, and along the way I think I've tried Ambre de Birmanie six or seven times, but I've finally reached it. Good luck with yours! And don't give up!! *As of August 1st, 2015, Noodler's flex pens will be undergoing a price increase, due to manufacturing costs: Nib Creaper from 17.50 to 20.15 CAD Ahab/Konrad from 25 to 28.75 CAD
Trouble-shooting: if your sharpener isn't giving you these crisp points, try tightening the screws holding in the blades - if they loosen, your points can break as you're sharpening your pencil, which shouldn't be happening at all.
Note: there are extra blades! They are tucked away by the hinge.