FOUND AROUND FRIDAY – Noodler’s Fountain Pens Edition

The above photo started a discussion about flex pens and that started a discussion about Noodler’s fountain pens and how I don’t have a single Noodler’s fountain pen that works like I’d hoped.

Feeling inspired, I found all of my Noodler’s fountain pens and a container of one of my most reliable inks – Pilot Iroshizuku’s Fuyu-syogun.

Noodler’s Konrad Flex Fountain Pen – Clear

This one accepted the ink easily. I love the blind cap covering the twisty thing for the piston. If you’ve ever accidentally twisted a twisty thing and gotten ink all over the place, you know what I’m talking about here.

How’d it write?

Noodler’s Konrad Flex – Writing Sample

Yeah. No.

I tried. I did a little scribbling, a little shaking. I gave the piston a little twist. I looked at the alignment of the thing to the other thing.  Yeah. No.

Moving right along . . .

Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex Fountain Pen – Yellow and Blue

The Nib Creaper is super-slim and has a great ink window – stylish and functional. I love the way they look.

How do they write?

Yellow first . . .

Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex – Writing Sample

It started out so well, but quickly became inconsistent. In the image above, it’s easy to see that the writing is darker at the top of the page and lighter as I near the end of the top paragraph.  There were also some hard starts. The flow just wasn’t right.

You know what makes me crazy? Inconsistent fountain pens. Work or don’t work, darn you!

Let’s look at the blue version . . .

Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex – Writing Sample

OK! Alrighty! The blue Noodler’s Nib Creaper (why is it named that??) is kind of nice! It writes, it’s fairly smooth a bit of happy feedback. It flexes! And it recovers quickly from railroading – very nice!

I’m going to call this one a win. For those keeping score, that is one win out of three pens.

Let’s keep going . . .

Noodler’s Konrad Flex Fountain Pen

A black version of the Konrad Flex. Love that big ink window and, again, a blind cap protecting the piston’s twisty thing.

How’s it write?

Noodler’s Konrad Flex – Writing Sample

Wait. What?

This pen wouldn’t take up the ink. I tried several times, several different ways. I took the thing out of the other thing, adjusted it a bit, and tried again.  No go.

I don’t know.


What’s next?

Noodler’s Ahab Flex Fountain Pen – Clear Demonstrator

Pretty sure the Ahab is the biggest of the Noodler’s pens. It fills with a plunger mechanism (fancy!) and looks like it could easily be converted to an eyedropper (but don’t quote me on that).

This is a pen I’ve reviewed in the past.

The ink sucked right up into the pen and I was feeling hopeful.

Noodler’s Ahab Flex – Writing Sample

The Ahab wrote decently – until I started flexing the nib.

Does it work as I’d hoped?  No.

What’s the score now? Is anyone keeping track?


Noodler’s Konrad Flex Fountain Pen – Red

This pen is pretttttty. I really really wanted it to write well.

Noodler’s Konrad Flex – Writing Sample

It wrote fine! Passed all but the hardest of the hard flexes. Seems like it recovered well from the over-flex.  I like it! Thank goodness because it really is a looker.  In fact, when Mr. Pentulant saw it, he asked, “Are you sure that’s a Noodler’s?” Ha!

I set all of the pens aside overnight and came back to them the next morning. How’d they do?

You’ll notice that the two pens that didn’t write the night before, didn’t write the next morning. No surprise there (especially since one of them didn’t have ink..ha).

That’s that.  
Here’s the final score:
Win – 2
Lose – 4

To the defense of Noodler’s for a moment . . . These pens are made to be tinkered with. If you’re a fiddler and you want to fiddle, maybe you’ll have more success than I have had.

I watched Brian Goulet’s video. I tried. I freakin’ tried (and then blamed myself? no.).  I have come to the conclusion that I’m willing to tinker a little, but I mostly just want my pens to write when I pick them up. You know?

I’ve also concluded that Noodler’s pens are inconsistent as a whole. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if I went out to the living room, picked up the blue one, and it didn’t lay down a single line of ink. Likewise, that plunger-fill pen might just work today.

And it’s that inconsistency that I cannot stand.  Noodler’s pens are not for me.  Noodler’s inks are a different story!

OK, what do you think?  Noodler’s pens – love ’em or hate ’em?

8 thoughts on “FOUND AROUND FRIDAY – Noodler’s Fountain Pens Edition

  1. I love this post. Not because yours pen didn't work, but in a way, because they didn't work. I bought an Ahab and a Creaper of my own. Did EVERYTHING I could think of to get them work. Nothing. Sent them to SBRE Brown. He got them writing but they couldn't flex AT ALL. I bought a Konrad and it works. So my personal score is 1/3. I've been gifted a Creaper and an Ahab, both of which work, but those don't count 🙂 I've tinkered and I'm not afraid to tinker. I did learn a lot about fountain pens while tinkering though. And about making messes in sinks after eyedroppering Ahabs that don't work.

  2. Love lots of the Noodler's inks (find they are also inconsistent, but he has such a variety) but have had no luck with the pens. Bought three creepers. I can mange to get them to write but they will dry out within days. I mean all the ink is gone–evaporated. Might as well pour it down the sink. So I never use them and never tried any other varieties of his pens. So, I guess I can't say that's a fair test, only buying one kind of his pens. But I have many bottles of Noodler's inks–adore Apache Sunset and Navajo Turquoise the best. Oh, and Black for drawing ink!

  3. There will always be a special place in my heart for the yellow nib creaper from Noodler's – because it was my first fountain pen, very carefully selected. I learned a lot about pens, and I put a lot of things in it that do not qualify as fountain pen ink. And it still works pretty reliably. But because the cap has a hole in it, anytime I let it sit for a few days, I know I need to put a drop of water on the feed to get it going again. It's the same with a teal creaper, and it was the same with a red creaper I had … Until it started leaking ink out the back end. Eek! I determined that I needed to replace the piston seal, which is a little rubber o, but managed to bend it out of shape instead. Oops. I also have two flex creapers, which work well. And an Ahab, which is the wettest writer I have, even fitted with a 1.9 stub from Gouletpens. I guess my track record is pretty good, with five success stories and just one loss.

  4. I have a noodler's Ahab and at first it was not working… I cleaned the feed with soapy water with a toothbrush… For about 5 minutes… I put it back on and it writes very nice and wet… I also replaced the nib for a Goulet nib and it writes super smooth…

  5. Thank you for all of your comments.

    I know there are people on Instagram saying that they felt like they were the only ones who were having trouble with these pens.

    As for me, I'm going to clean the ink out of these six and then make a decision about their future. Stay tuned!

  6. I hate them. I've got three ahabs, and none of them work. The material of the body is softer than the material of the converter, so the threads strip out. The nibs are crap. They look cool, but they're more frustration that they're worth. This whole “tinkering” defense is nonsense. It doesn't justify making pens that don't work most of the time.

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