Monday, April 30, 2018

Nock co Sinclair Review

The Nock Co Sinclair is a wonderful pen case made by you guessed it Nock Co. The Sinclair holds three pens (even more depending on how you configure it) one or two notebooks (again even more depending on how you configure it) and there's a slot in the middle for your phone or anything else that will fit (or more pens or notebooks).

I have the Mandarin and Steel version, It's a very nice bright orange color on the outside and I think that the steel color on the inside really complements it. The case feels very sturdy and robust in the hand. The 1000d nylon on the outside is very durable, and if you are also a fan of hiking and the like, you probably already have something made out of this material. The nylon fabric on the inside of the case also seems to be very durable, while being soft enough to not scratch your pens. On the outside of the case Nock use the ubiquitous YKK zippers that are super reliable.

As for how the case holds pens, it does so perfectly. All of the pens I have fit, and I have also seen people fit some extremely large pens into this case. Every pen I own also fits into the pen sleeves with the clip inside the sleeve as well.

Above I've shown some of the configurations that I mentioned at the beginning of this review. in every configuration the case zips shut without any problems. You can really put a lot of stuff in this case if you want to. But you could also keep it pretty minimal and the case will be relatively thin.

Nock has considered every detail in the making of this case. All the stitching is flawless and everything works and preforms like it should. You can tell that one of the founders Brad Dowdy (of of the pen addict podcast and blog) is a pen person, because it holds, from what I can tell, the largest variety of pens for this type of case. You can also tell that the other founder Jeff Bruckwicki is a very talented seamster with how the case is constructed. That being said, Brad and Jeff don't make every case themselves anymore, but they are still very much produced in the U.S.A and are held to the very high quality standards.

In conclusion if you are looking for a very high quality, light weight, durable, pen case to carry with you everyday or just to protect your pens. You can never go wrong with any of the Nock Co pen cases. But for the versatility, you can't beat the Sinclair.

Here's a link to the product featured in this review.

If you have any suggestions for future reviews feel free to email me, or leave a comment!
Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Monday, April 23, 2018

Noodler's 54th Massachusetts ink review

This is one of my personal favorite inks. Not only for the color but also for the history behind the name. The 54th Massachusetts was the first all African American Union regiment. The regiment had prominent abolitionists active in its recruitment, including Fredrick Douglas whose two sons were among the first to enlist. The men bravely fought at the battle of Ft. Wagner where they lost 20 men, 125 were wounded and, 102 were missing (though primarily presumed dead). The regiment and battle of Ft. Wagner were prominently  featured in the movie "Glory". The men of the 54th Massachusetts also fought, and won, a long and important battle to receive equal pay with white soldiers.

The ink is a blue black color that is sort of an amalgamation of the Union and confederate uniforms. It has some shading characteristics but nothing like say, Apache Sunset. The ink performs well on most papers and dries pretty fast. That being said the ink is by no means perfect. I've noticed that this ink tends to feather and spread quite a bit on Leuchtturm 1917 paper. It will also bleed through both the Leuchtturm and Rhodia paper in broader nibs.
Where the ink performs best is obviously Tomoe River paper. On this paper you get to see the lovely shading characteristics and you get a lovely crisp line. The one down side to this of course, is that it takes a little bit longer (15-20 seconds) to dry. However even being a lefty over-writer I don't seem to have any issue with smudging and smearing.

                     Here you can see the feathering I talked about above.

If you are interested in this ink, I would personally recommend that you get a sample first to test on the papers you like using, to see how it performs. But other than that I think that this is a great ink. And like all Noodler's inks it's made in the U.S.A.

If you have a suggestion for a future review feel free to e-mail me or leave a comment below. Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Field Notes "Front Page" review

After the success of the summer 2016 colors edition of the "Byline" reporters style notebook from Field Notes, they received A LOT of requests to make it a permanent edition to their line- up. And that's what they did (almost exactly) with the "Front Page" edition.

The Front Page notebooks are Identical in size, number of pages, cover type, and binding style. But where they differ is cosmetically. The cover has been changed from the Neenah Environment 120#DTC in "Wrought Iron" with "Federal Blue" ink, to Neenah Environment 120#DTC in "Concrete Gray" with "Dachshund Nose Black" ink. The innards changed from Cougar "Natural'' 70#T vellum with "Double Knee Duck Canvas" ink for the ruling. To Cougar 70# "white" vellum with "Gray Lady" ink for the ruling. The last difference is that the wire that binds the book is now black instead of silver.

The paper in the Front Page still holds up about as well to fountain pens as the Byline edition did, which is admirably so. Field notes aren't really known for making super fountain pen friendly notebooks, but these books do very well. As with every thing your nib and ink choice will make a difference in your results.

I also find this paper to slightly "toothier" than the paper featured in the Byline edition. Something I personally enjoy but you may not. It adds just ever so much more feed back to what ever you are writing with, as opposed to the almost glass like quality of the paper in the Byline edition. But again your nib width will have an effect on how smooth any paper feels.

 The Bleed through that you are seeing around the TWSBI is do to me crossing out a mistake and laying down a lot of ink.

                                      Heres a comparison of the color of the cover and innards.

I'm really impressed with these notebooks, and they are currently what I use to write the first drafts for my blog posts. And the brighter white paper really helps pencil and fountain pen inks pop off of the page.

In conclusion I would recommend these notebooks to anyone looking for a high quality reporters notebook, or anyone looking to be able to write grocery lists and take notes in fountain pen.

If you have any suggestions for future reviews be sure to leave a comment. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Field Notes Pitch Black (Notebook size) review

The Notebook size is Field Notes' answer to a larger format Memo book type notebook. The books stand 4 3/4" wide by 7 1/2" tall. This size makes them perfect for: Longer form notes, a desk notebook, and Bullet Journaling to name a few.

They feature Field Notes' custom "Pitch-Black" 118# duplex cover that's made up of French Paper Co's "Blacktop" (outside) and Packing Brown Wrap" (aka Kraft on the inside), and 60# "Bright White" opaque smooth Finch paper for the innards. The ruling on the version shown below is a 3/16 inch dot grid in "Light Mist Gray". The books also come in a ruled version that features a 1/4" ruling, with a double line at the top, in the same color.

The paper itself is the same as the paper found on the standard Kraft books, and a lot of the colors line. It holds up to most everyday writing instruments very well, with fountain pens and bolder felt tips being the exceptions.

The notebooks size offers enhanced versatility, and the dot grid version is perfect for just about everything. 

The first picture of the inside cover above most accurately represents the actual color of the Kraft.

In conclusion, I think that these notebooks are perfect for anyone looking for a larger format notebook, that is still very portable. Or a notebook for larger projects that won't fit into a pocket notebook. These books provide all the functionality of the memo books just in a larger size.

Here is a link to purchase these notebooks: pitch-black-note

If you have any recommendations for future reviews please leave a comment below. Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Monday, April 9, 2018

Nock Co Dot Dash 3x5 Cards Review

The Nock Co 3x5 cards are a simple, but very effective stationery item. They feature an 80# cover stock that holds up AMAZINGLY well. I personally haven't had anything bleed though the card, and if a Sharpie won't, I don't think anything will.

The cards hefty 80# cover stock gives them a sturdy and durable feel. As for writing on the cards, the paper is very smooth and not the least bit toothy. 

I haven't noticed any feathering with any of the fountain pen inks that I've tried so far. The cards also do fantastically well with pencils, my second favorite writing instrument, offering a yet again, VERY smooth writing experience.

The Nock Co signature Dot Dash pattern is unique and functional, giving the practicality of grid lines with a little something different. Nock Co also currently offers two different colors for the dot dash ruling: Dusty Blue, and Amber. The option shown in the pictures below is Dusty Blue.

                 These first two pics are the same
                 card. Really.

The Nock Co Dot Dash cards are a great 3x5 card that I would recommend to anyone that wants a quality 3x5 card, and/or, uses fountain pens on a regular basis. They're smooth to write on and hold up well to every writing instrument I have to test on them. If a Sharpie won't bleed through, I don't think most fountain pens will either. And like all Nock Co products they are very high quality and made in the U.S. 

I'll be doing a review on Nock's Sinclair case sometime in the near future so be on the lookout for that. As always if you have any recommendations on future reviews please leave a comment below. Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Field Notes Coastal Edition Review

The Coastal Edition is Field Notes' 38th Colors edition. 
It features a cover made of 100# Neenah Classic Crest Cadet Gray paper that is foil stamped with two different Crown Foils by Nu Wave  Die Cutting and Finishing, depicting either the east or west coast of the U.S. The cover also features foil stamped reticles, and white ink for the logo. The innards of the books are 60# Finch Paper Opaque Smooth, "Bright White", with a "split-fountain" application of "Coastal Blue" and "Coastal Green" inks, in the form of a 3/16" x 3/16" reticle grid.

I Personally love these books, and they have quickly become one of my all time favorite Field Notes colors editions. The covers are beautiful, and depending on angle you view them from, and the lighting you are in, you get a whole spectrum of colors. Which I bet is even better if you are not color blind. 

The innards hold up to just about every everyday writing instrument for most people, broader fountain pens and bolder felt tips being the exception. But as with any paper, the width of the nib, and the inks you use will have varying effects.

Personally the reticle grid featured in these books is my favorite ruling (If the Field Notes Crew is reading this, it would be awesome to see a standard book featuring a reticle grid.). I have heard that some think that the reticle is too dark, but I don't have that problem at all, and if I did, I got used to it very quickly. I also like the two different ink colors that make up the reticle. They keep the book fresh and interesting while you use it.

In conclusion, I think that Field Notes hit it out of the park with this one. They managed to keep the colors line fresh, by incorporating some new printing techniques, while still keeping to the form factor that so many know and love. And by making a functional, beautiful pocket notebook.

If you have any recommendations for future reviews, please leave a comment below. Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Friday, April 6, 2018

Blackwing Volumes 16.2

The Blackwing vol. 16.2 is the winter 2017/18 volumes edition. It's number, 16.2, is a nod to mathematician, writer, and visionary Ada Lovelace. The pencil features a matte white barrel, matte black ferrule, white eraser, and Blackwing's firm graphite. The barrel also features the binary pattern for the initials she signed her work with A.A.L on the back.

The pencil (like all Blackwings) writes great, sharpens to a very nice point, and the graphite is centered well. The firm graphite helps with not having to sharpen the pencil as often without giving up any tonal value to the line it produces.

One thing that I like that you may not is that, after carrying the pencil in my pocket for a few weeks the ferrule has gotten a little shiny and worn. The imprint has also worn off a little bit. I quite like this however, because even if you take perfect care of a pencil you're just going to sharpen it to a nub anyway.

In conclusion I think the 16.2 is a great addition to the Volumes lineup. It does what a pencil should and it does it perfectly.

If you have any suggestions for future reviews please leave a comment below. Thanks for reading and have great day!

Welcome to Irv's Stationery

Hello, and welcome to Irv's Stationery! On this blog I'll be reviewing various stationery products from notebooks to fountain pen inks. I'll be posting at least two reviews a month, so be on the lookout for those. If you have any suggestions be sure to put them in the comments below a post! Have a look around and enjoy!

Field Notes Rams edition

The Rams limited edition of Field Notes is a collaboration to celebrate the release of Gary Hustwit's new documentary film "Rams&qu...