as many “health” regimes for pens as there are authorities on pen care. Now, I don’t claim to be an authority, but everything suggested in this article is something I do (or avoid doing) for my pens, and I have what I consider sound reasons for my choices. Obviously, you should choose a regime that seems reasonable to you.


Fountain pen ink is a solution. To the chemist, a solution consists of a fluid in which other substances are dissolved (the solvent), and the dissolved substances (the solutes). The solutes are actually reduced to the molecular level, the same as the solvent, and all the different molecules are mixed up evenly to create a uniform fluid. The solvent in fountain pen ink is distilled water, and the solutes are dyes, wetting agents, and mold inhibitors. Because it’s a solution, fountain pen ink contains no solid matter at all. This is an important point to remember.

Fountain pen ink bottleAny ink designed for fountain pens is safe for use in your pens, but some inks contain more dye than others do. Some inks, especially the very highly saturated “boutique” brands, may