Notebook


Field Notes Black Ice 3

 

Here’s a look at the “Bright White” Finch Fine Smooth 70# text paper found in the new Field Notes Black Ice.

As in previous blog posts I have created violin plots of graphite samples on the  different papers.

To read under what conditions the graphite is put on the paper please read the explanation in Lunatic Paper or other blog posts.

four-field-notes

Field Notes comparison plus samples

The samples and their violin plots

Colour base paper shift

Previous samples were automatically adjusted by the scanner, so the violin plots were all closer together than they should have been, i.e. the base colour of the paper didn’t make a big difference.

This has now been changed, explanation in the video, so the results are more objective, but also feel more difficult to compare.

Conclusion

The finch Fine paper used in the Black Ice Field Notes is great, nearly as good as the Boise paper in the County Fair editions. For my purposes, i.e. writing with pencils, it is miles better than the Finch Opaque paper used in the original Field Notes.

One small issue with the Black Ice though: the paper at the bottom of some of my notebooks was ripped, see photo. Even though the shrinkwrapping was intact this might have happened in transport as my Field Notes calendar was also damaged in transport.

Ripped

Ripped


Graf von Faber-Castell Journal and Paper 1

gvfc-journal1Today: a noble notebook and pencil.

Graf von Faber-Castell, that’s Faber-Castell’s posh product line started in 1993. Back then our favourite count, Anton-Wolfgang Graf von Faber-Castell, introduced this line as part of Faber-Castell’s reorientation. As a pencil enthusiast I am quite happy that the Graf von Faber-Castell line has not neglected the humble pencil. There was a Graf von Faber-Castell version with only an eraser cap, a pencil extender and the perfect pencil and there were some other pencils along the way, like the fluorescent Graf von Faber-Castells.

This Graf von Faber-Castell Journal and Pencil set is available for free with most purchases from The Pen Company’s Graf von Faber-Castell line. I got it free of charge when I recently placed an order with them.

gvfc-journal-open2

 

The pencil included in this set is one of their fluted pencils with a silver plated end cap. I assume it is silver plated, not solid silver, but I am not 100% sure. These pencils are a bit harder than the very old Graf von Faber-Castell pencils, but certainly softer than a Faber-Castell HB pencil. In any case they are a pleasure to write with while keeping the point fairly well.

 

gvfc-journal-inside
gvfc-pencilThe notebook you get is clothbound and has thick, creamy paper in a kind of slightly yellow shade of light beige. It feels quite different to the ordinary white from most notebooks. Despite the smooth surface the paper is taking the graphite on very well. I am spelling this out because some smooth paper, like the one found in the original Field Notes, is very smooth and doesn’t work well with pencils – as if the paper is too smooth and not abrasive enough to get the graphite off the pencil and onto the paper. This Graf von Faber-Castell paper does however feel very smooth to the touch but is ‘abrasive’ enough for use with HB pencils. The writing experience on this paper is just excellent. It’s a shame you can’t buy these individually, but since they’ve been around for at least five years I hope that we will still see this notebook as part of some special offers in the future.


This blog post has been published on The Pen Company’s Blog, too. Just to spell it out, I have not received any money for writing this blog post.


Book Block

Another blog post about a Kickstarter.

This time it’s a Kickstarter to launch a customisable notebook. They have been contacting several stationery blogs, so I am sure you will read more about them soon.

To customise your notebook you basically create a file containing what should be printed on the cover (front, side and back) and Book Block will then print this on the cover of the notebook for you.

The whole idea sounds very tempting to me, especially since for what it is the price for one of the notebooks seems very reasonable – or should I say almost ridiculously modest.

Remember Monsieur Notebooks, from a previous blog post? It looks as if the notebooks will be done in cooperation with them. Back in 2011 when I reviewed the Monsieur Notebook they were made in India, but according to the Book Block Kickstarter  page they are now manufacturing in the UK and you can chose from five different types of paper provided by Monsieur Notebooks. The covers used for the notebooks are from Europe, too, they are sourced from the Netherlands.

Some sample Book Block notebooks (Image © Book Block)

Some sample Book Block notebooks (Image © Book Block)

The whole Kickstarter sounds really exciting. I hope Book Block will get enough funding.


Book Block have offered many blogs, including Bleistift, a free notebook if their Kickstarter is successful. I don’t believe this has influenced me when writing this blog post. I have written about other Kickstarter projects in the past, some were successful, some were unsuccessful, and I have not received any good or money from the other Kickstarter projects I wrote about in the past.


Lots of links..

Today: a collection of links. Most of them have already been posted on the Bleistift Facebook page, but since most blog readers don’t look at the Facebook page I’ll repost them here.


Late back to school offers 3

Two late back to school offers I picked up this week in Tesco:

A Black n’ Red polynote A7 and a Pilot V Pen.

Black n Red and Pilot

I mentioned the A7 notepad in a previous blog post. What happened since then? They dropped the ‘polynote’ part from the name and the price more than doubled! It usually sells for £2.50, so getting it for £1.25  (~$2.05; €1.60) is a good deal these days. Last time I only paid 60p – but the steep increase in stationery prices in the UK is nothing new…

Unfortunately I only bought one. I should have stocked up. Maybe I’ll be lucky and it will still be on offer next time I go to Tesco.

The other item: a Pilot V Pen for £1 (~$1.62; €1.28). You might be disappointed though if you hope to get a fountain pen with  a ‘mirrored’ nib, as displayed on the packaging 8^P. The actual nib is labelled the normal way round.

Pilot V Pen


Prices and exchange rates: September 2014.