29 September 2012

Spending Money on Pens NOT Cases

I am a school teacher.... I have always thought that carries a lot of meaning.  1st of all... I write a lot.  2nd... I can't carry just one or two pens.  3rd... I don't have much money.

I have written with fountain pens since grade school.  I have had plenty of time to acquire a lot of pens.  Different pens get tasked with different things.  I have black for writing on most things, blue for anything that is going to be copied (so you can tell the original), red for marking normal homework, green for marking typed-homework, non-feathering ink for sticky notes, a random color in a broad nib for long writing sessions... etc...

I hit a point at the beginning of this school year where I was going to have to travel for a couple classes.  I always had a number of pens that stayed in my desk... but I kept finding that I was needing them.  I needed a better solution to just taking what fit in my coat pocket or the pen or two in my shirt pocket.

I have a big case at home that I keep everything in... but it holds something like 30 pens.... too big to take everywhere with me.

I looked at a number of pen cases, pen pouches, pen wraps and penvelopes.  There were several that I liked very much... but for the cost, I could buy a decent pen or two.  I was about to but a 80$ pen case when I found this at a local office supply store for 1.25$ on sale.


It is a simple pencil case, but I had a moment of clarity and bought it.  The other two pens are ones that I carry on my person.  The little silver bullet shaped one is a Fisher space pen... the other is a Montblanc 163 rollerball.  The paper for the discipline referral forms is coated and FP ink does not penetrate.  I got the MB as a freebie of sorts when I bought my MB 149.  It's not bad... I wouldn't spend money on it... but it isn't bad... it's the one I had people so they have a nice writing experience... without using one of my fountain pens.

The moment of clarity, was the it would fit a cigar case I had bought a few years ago from a pen store in Arkansas (Vanness Pens).


From left to right... Small vile of extra ink... in this case Pilot's Kon Peki, Extra Led, non-latex eraser, Retro-51 Hex-O-Matic Mechanical Pencil, Parker Jotter fitted with a fisher space pen refill, Permanent marker, Platinum Preppy highlighter with Noodler's Firefly, Platinum Preppy with Kung Te-Cheng, TWSBI 540 with Pharmacist "Urkundentinte"....

The TWSBI gets slipped into my coat pocket a lot of the time... it shares time in the case with a Noodler's Ahab.  The other 5 there are pretty standard.  The ink in preppies doesn't EVER seem to evaporate... so they just stay there until I need them without worry of them getting knocked around.

The pens in the hard case alternate through my nicer pens.


When I bought it, there were cardboard sleeves inside.  I took felt with sticky backing and installed it inside. It has been brilliant.  Right noew, there is a Parker 51, MB 149, and my Noodler's Music Neponset.


The hard case cost me next to nothing... less then 20$ I think (it was on sale 5 years ago)  Felt was 5$.  Soft case was 1.25$

I feel like my pens are safe.  The soft case is sturdy enough that nothing is going to fall out or get snapped.  The hard case holds all my nicer pens safely.  It is big enough to hold a MB 149 with ease.  Yet not so big that a Parker 51 bounces around.

What do you all use?  Do you go for the ready made solution (nothing wrong with that)?  Do you retro fit something else?  Do you do something completely original?  I am interested in what other people do.  I have a feeling there are as many solutions as there are pen-users.

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