Currently Inked #28 | 1 January 2017

This episode of Currently Inked is brought to you by, now featuring top-of-the-line pens from Montegrappa and Aurora. In addition to nib adjustment and griding services, you can now purchase high-end pens from Dan Smith of and get a free nib adjustment/nib grind as part of your purchase. You can find the web store at

  • 2:45 – Are the Kaweco and discontinued Caran d’Ache Colors of the Earth the same inks?
  • 5:10 – What is the point of reverse writing?
  • 6:50 – What are the benefits to a gold nib over a steel or titanium nib?
  • 11:05 – Currently Inked #1 – Pelikan Calculation of Times with Pilot Blue Ink
  • 13:50 – Have you ever purchased an expensive pen with the intent of swapping the nib as soon as you get it?
  • 16:30 – Sponsor –
  • 19.00 – Are cotton swabs the best way to get an accurate representation when swabbing inks?
  • 22:15 – Currently Inked #2 – Sailor Pro Gear – Diamine Shimmertastic Blue Lightning
  • 25:45 – What is your wanna-have fountain pen? If your hobby more about wanting pens rather than having pens?
  • 28:50 – How do you find people to whom you can write who aren’t creepers uninterested in actually sending letters?
    • FPGeeks
    • FountainPenNetwork
    • Pen Addict Slack
  • 32:10 – What’s a good ink to use in vintage fountain pens?
  • 35:05 – Delta The Journal with Bril Turqoise
  • 37:50 – Do you think the Jinhao is still a good starter pen? What is your favorite pen under $20?
  • Neil Pollock

    Hey Matt…. I am looking for a nice dark brown ink. What do you think about the Mont Blanc Toffee brown? I think this is the color I am shooting for, have you used it? If so, what are your thoughts….Neil

    • I have used it, and I like it a lot. Very nicely behaved. It may not be quite as dark as you’re hoping for, though. You might also want to look at the KWZ Browns or, if you want a really dark brown ink, Iroshizuku Yama-guri.

      • Neil Pollock

        Thanks Matt. I just googled the colors. Yama-guri looks a bit on the purple side, but the KWZ Honey looks nice. I will order some samples and try a few in person. I wanted to use this in a vintage esterbrook J which is why I thought of the Mont Blanc. You mentioned in one of your recent videos that older latex sac pens were susceptible to harsh acidic inks, and that it would be best to stay away from small ink producers for safety reasons. That the larger ink, or pen manufacturers that make their own ink, were probably safer to stick with. I guess in a piston filler it wouldn’t make a difference right?

        • Honey’s not really a dark brown color, more of a yellow-brown. But it is a gorgeous ink, nonetheless. I don’t see much purple in my Yama-guri. Mostly a brown-grey to my eyes. MB should be pretty safe for your vintage pens. I’ve used it in mine without any issue in the past.

  • Marek K.

    I’ve got an idea: to help you with singing and to not lose the “currently inked” episodes – instead of talking about fountain pens, you could sing about them! Ta-dah, problem solved. 😀

  • Vasco

    Nice tip on the Kaweco alternative to Grand Canyon, thanks. Another nice brown, imho, is Seitz-Kreuznach’s Chestnut Brown. Perhaps not very far away from these two but with less (if any) honey undertones.