Introducing the Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Fountain Pen

Recently, Pelikan released the M205 Duo Highlighter, a fountain pen specifically made for use as a highlighter pen. What can you expect from this welcome addition to the Pelikan pen family?

The M205 Duo Highlighter has the usual desirable qualities common to Pelikan fountain pens. It has a reliably good piston filling system and a high quality, smooth-writing stainless steel nib. The transparent yellow resin body is nicely accented with chrome trim and the distinguished Pelikan pocket clip. When you reach for this pen, the bright yellow color won’t let you forget its primary purpose – to be used as a highlighter! The pen weighs 0.5 oz (12g) empty, and is 5” long when capped, 5 7/8” when posted and 4 3/4” without the cap.

The nib is a BB size, or in other words broad-broad or extra broad. This is a rounded nib with an iridium tip. The line it produces is meant to be used for underlining, marking, editing and proofing your documents. As illustrated on the special box it comes in, if you want to highlight an entire word you’ll need to scribble back and forth over the word a few times. It does not produce a line a few millimeters in width like a calligraphy pen or a felt chisel-tip highlighter. In addition to using this pen as a highlighter, the BB nib makes this pen suitable for everyday writing in the ink color of your choice.

Pelikan includes a 30ml bottle of bright fluorescent yellow M205 Duo Highlighter Ink along with the purchase of your pen. The ink can also be purchased separately when you need a refill. Interestingly, the ink box states "Attention! The highlighter ink is only suited for the M205 Duo fountain pen. Do not use with other writing utensils!" From my own past experience I’ve seen yellow ink stain plastics – perhaps this is the reason for the warning and the reason that the pen itself is bright yellow. Does anyone know for sure? If so, please tell us!

The packaging of the M205 is quite fun. The outside of the white box is accented with grey print that appears as though it has already been highlighted with the pen. The box opens to reveal fluorescent yellow panels printed with care instructions in 10 different languages. Some of the text on the box states that the M205 Duo “combines two functions that, together, form one entity. It is a highlighter and a fountain pen, it marks and paraphrases. A well-functioning and perfectly balanced team whose members complement one another while also being able to stand alone.”

Here is an M205 Duo writing sample using Noodler’s Sunrise highlighting ink:

Here is a sample of the M205 highlighting ink on Clairefontaine French rule paper using both a cotton swab and a Brause Steno nib:

Have you had the chance to use the Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter yet? If so, what do you think? Have you ever used fountain pens as highlighters?

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What is the Pelikan Super Pirat Ink Eradicator?

Pelikan makes a great tool for fountain pen users called the Super Pirat ink eradicator. This is not an erasable pen, rather, it is a correction pen. The Super Pirat ink eradicator pen is designed with students in mind since it can be used to correct mistakes when you are writing with a fountain pen filled with washable or erasable blue ink. Let me demonstrate…

I’m writing with my LAMY Safari filled with a LAMY blue ink cartridge and I make a mistake!

The white end of the Pelikan Super Pirat ink eradicator neutralizes the blue color of the fountain pen ink and makes it seem invisible. This neutralizing effect continues long after the Super Pirat pen dries on the page so you cannot use blue fountain pen ink to make your correction.

Conveniently, the Super Pirat’s other end has a blue ink pen that is unaffected by the ink neutralizer so it can be used to write in your correction. The Super Pirat’s blue pen is not meant to be used for taking notes, it is only to be used for making corrections.

There are several kinds of readily available, erasable blue fountain pen inks including: LAMY Blue, Pelikan Royal Blue, Aurora Blue, J. Herbin Bleu Myosotis and many many more. Pelikan even makes ink eradicators for pink and purple Pelikan inks, but we have never seen these in the USA. What kind of erasable blue ink do you use?

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Pelikan Pelikano Junior – A Lefty’s Review

Pelikano Junior

I was rather excited to get my hands on another fountain pen specifically designed for left-handed writers – the Pelikan Pelikano Junior with an “L” nib. It is an amazingly smooth writer for such an inexpensive fountain pen!

This pen is designed with beginning fountain pen users in mind and is actually a children’s school fountain pen. The nib is rounded in shape so it is not “pokey” (especially important for us lefties) and it is very forgiving. I can even write a fine line with it when the nib is upside-down!

The nib is a Pelikan “L” size for left-handed writers, or an “A” size on the version of the Pelikano Jr. for right-handed writers. It makes a medium-broad size line and has a very wet ink flow. In fact, if you carry this pen with you, you’d better have an extra ink cartridge on hand for when your ink runs out (Pelikan 4001 giant ink cartridges are a good choice). Some people might not appreciate this small inconvenience, but I like changing ink colors frequently so this is one thing about the Pelikano Jr. that I really like. Since this pen lays down a lot of ink, for a lefty I would suggest using an ink with a decent drying time to help prevent any smudges. Because it produces a bold line, this is also a good pen for those of us that like to use light or bright fountain pen ink colors.

The funky, minimalist and colorful design of the Pelikano Jr. instantly appealed to me. The pen is rather chunky, but not heavy, and provides a good rubber grip designed to assist with finger placement. When you unscrew the pen there is a smooth area to attach a name sticker to (plain stickers are included with the Pelikano Jr.). When the pen is screwed back together you can read your name through the pen barrel, which is helpful to keep well-meaning right-handed friends, students, etc from swiping one of your favorite everyday fountain pens.

The Pelikano Junior has no clip, and the body is very plain except for a couple of oval shaped bumps to keep the pen from rolling and the cap has the word “Pelikano” on it in raised lettering. I like to write with the cap off of this pen. I would imagine that the rather large size barrel on this pen would be helpful to assist small hands learning penmanship for the first time, as well as for older ones that have a bit of trouble gripping a pen.

The Pelikano Junior fountain pen is a great pen for everyday use and it has fans that include people of all ages! The bright translucent Pelikano Jr. colors include green (my favorite), blue, red and yellow.

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Pelikano Pen Cartridge Tips

Occasionally we hear from some of you that short universal ink cartridges come loose inside your Pelikano rollerball or Pelikano fountain pens. There is an easy solution, and it is to place 2 universal cartridges in the pen barrel instead of just one. The trick is that the extra cartridge that is not attached to the feed or main part of the pen needs to be placed in the barrel "upside down", or in other words with the narrow end pointing away from the nib. This extra cartridge prevents the cartridge that is attached to the pen from coming off. You can rinse the ink out of a used universal cartridge and use this for the extra cartridge, or you can use a new full ink cartridge and this way you’ll have spare ink in case you need it.

Another solution is to use Pelikan 4001 Giant Ink Cartridges or Pelikan GRP/5 Roller Pen Ink Cartridges since their much longer size helps to keep them in place.

This trick can also be used with J. Herbin’s refillable rollerball pens. Hope this helps!

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Introduction to Mixing Fountain Pen Ink

Using an Ink Mixing Kit

One of the most enjoyable things about using a fountain pen is being able to mix your own custom ink colors! If you are a new fountain pen user, or haven’t tried this for yourself yet, we would like to share some things we’ve learned about ink mixing.

One myth is that you must match the brand of fountain pen you are using to the brand of ink that you purchase. This may have been true with some vintage fountain pens and vintage inks, but with modern fountain pens feel free to experiment with any modern ink specially formulated for use in fountain pens. If you want to be cautious, you may try using your less expensive pens to begin your experiments. Although we haven’t had this problem, we have heard that intensely colored inks may stain a fountain pen.

Another myth about ink mixing is that you must only mix inks if they are the same brand. However, we have found that many different brands of ink will work just fine when mixed together. For example, many Noodler’s Inks, LAMY, Pelikan and J. Herbin Inks can be mixed together to create new colors without any problems. There are always exceptions though, so when trying a new ink combination we would recommend making a small amount first and waiting a little while to see if there are any reactions. Using an ink mixing kit is helpful since these are designed for making small test batches of ink and the clear vials help you to see if any globs or precipitate form after mixing inks together.

If a batch of ink gums up your fountain pen, or you want to start out fresh with your new ink color, you can wash the pen and the converter out thoroughly with room temperature water. Have fun experimenting to see what inks work best for you!

In a future post we will mention some ink combinations that you might want to avoid. In the meantime, we would love it if you would share your favorite fountain pen ink recipe with us!

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