DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin Ink Review

DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin

In my formative fountain pen years, you know, like three years ago, I fell in love with DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin ink. It’s a basic dark blue, but at a time when I had somewhere around seven inks instead of seventy, it set itself apart.

I remember writing with it and feeling like a real fountain pen user for the first time. Basic black and blue inks were boring, and I had yet to discover the oranges, pinks, and purples that I would eventually fall in love with. Benjamin Franklin had character and stood out on the page. My handwriting looked wonderful.

DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin Bottle

The ink is wet and flows wonderfully, even from a dry nib like the Pilot Prera italic nib I used for this review. It feels wet and lubricated, and flows well. The color is dark for sure, along the lines of a darker blue black ink. As you may or may not know, blue black inks make up some of my all-time favorites and daily workhorses. This one doesn’t have the black or grey you may see in other blue black inks, but the blue is deep and rich. And it even has a hint of red sheen.

Pilot Prera Nib

As I was re-familiarizing myself with Benjamin Franklin, my first thought went to one of my current favorite inks: Montblanc JFK. Another dark blue, JFK is a shade or two lighter, shows off a touch of grey, and overall, has more character. They are close though. My next thought went to Diamine Cult Pens Deep Dark Blue, but as the name would lead you to believe, it is a deeper, darker blue than Benjamin Franklin.

DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin Swab

I learned something new during this review as well. According to Vanness Pens, DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin is the same ink as DeAtramentis Standard Dark Blue. Seems kind of dishonest from DeAtrementis to repackage one of their standard inks as if it were something special. Fortunately, both inks are the same price - $13 for a 35ml bottle - but it’s a strange move. I can only assume the rest of the historical lineup has the same duplication.

Regardless, this is an excellent ink at a fair price. I’ll be using this one a lot, and will try not to misplace this bottle like I did my original bottle.

(Vanness Pens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)

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DeAtramentis Benjamin Franklin Review
Posted on December 4, 2017 and filed under DeAtramentis, Ink Review.

The Pen Addict Podcast: Episode 285 - The Love Toaster

Field Notes Resolution Edition

Myke and I pre-recorded last week so we had a lot to catch up on this week. We covered the latest Field Notes news, including their Abercromie & Fitch collaboration and the issues that came with it, more Tiffany Sharpie follow-up, and Myke’s attempts to get fountain pens delivered to a hotel in Las Vegas.

Show Notes & Download Links

This episode of The Pen Addict is sponsored by:

Harry’s: Check out Harry’s Holiday sets!

Squarespace: Make your next move. Enter offer code INK at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase.

Lovepop: Reimagining cards and how you buy them

Posted on December 1, 2017 and filed under Podcast.

Nomadic PF-15 2-Story Pen Case: A Review

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(Susan M. Pigott is a fountain pen collector, pen and paperholic, photographer, and professor. You can find more from Susan on her blog Scribalishess.)

The Nomadic PF-15 2-Story Pen Case is a padded, zippered pen and art supply case. The outside of the case is made of nylon and polyester with a woven, heather-like look.

Outside of Case.jpg

The case has two zippers for easy opening and closing.


Inside the top flap is a webbed pocket that is perfect for a small ruler, flat scissors, or pens and pencils.

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The main compartment consists of two parts. The first “story” can hold several pens plus there’s a pop-up pocket for an eraser or small pencil sharpener. You can also press the pocket flat to accommodate larger objects like scissors.

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Main Compartment 2.jpg

The second “story” is a flap with three elastic pen/pencil holders. This allows you to put certain pens or pencils on top for easy access.


Overall, I like the design of this case. The bottom compartment can hold ten or more pens (ballpoint, rollerball, gel, or highlighters), and the top flap sets apart three pens or pencils for easy access. The mesh pocket in the top is perfect for flat items like a ruler, though you could certainly put more pens there.

Pen Case.jpg

However, I’m not so fond of the pop-up pocket. It is useful to hold an eraser or a small pencil sharpener, but it doesn’t really lie flat when it’s not in use, so it just seems to get in the way.

Pop Up.jpg

I wish the top flap held at least four pens (there’s plenty of room for one more slot). I also think that the flap should be longer so that it completely protects the pens or pencils from the supplies underneath. Because the flap is short, any pens in the slots will knock against the pens/pencils underneath, which could lead to scratches. It would also be helpful if the flap was detachable so you could have easier access to the pens in the bottom compartment. As it is, you have to hold the flap out of the way to access the pens in the bottom compartment.


I do not recommend this case for fountain pens. The elastic loops in the pen flap are fairly tight and will accommodate only the slimmest fountain pens. More importantly, because the flap is short, your pens will hang over by about an inch or so, leaving them exposed to any pens or supplies underneath.

For regular pens, pencils, and art supplies, this pen case will work well. It is small enough to fit in purses and backpacks, and the nylon/polyester exterior should stand up to all sorts of abuse.

You can purchase the Nomadic PF-15 2-Story Pen Case from Jet Pens in either black or navy blue for $19.00.

(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)

Posted on December 1, 2017 and filed under Nomadic, Pen Case.