A Grail Pen Update

Since my last post on the grail pen, I’ve had a few people asking whether I’ve pulled the trigger and the answer (so far) is no. Partly because it’s a monumental amount of money and I haven’t quite come to terms with that, but it’s also partly because the pen was discontinued shortly after that post was published. There’s still a few available here and there so it remains a possibility, but there’s also a new Skeleton being released. The official announcement is this weekend but I’ve been fortunate to enjoy an early look.

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The Cost Disease

In today’s post, we talk about an idea in economics called the Cost Disease and how it affects the prices of the things we buy. It’s an interesting idea which allows us to pick apart the FP industry and think about how it might change the industry in the future. 

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Precious Resin

One of the more perplexing things about our community is the lengths that some members will go to in order to support the firms which provide for us and sustain the hobby – the manufacturers, distributors, and retailers – but some of those very same members will dig the boot into one particular brand, Montblanc, without hesitation. Most experienced members of the community will have seen this special treatment and have their own views about whether it is justified, but it undoubtedly exists. And it's a problem: not because MB or any other brand should go uncriticised but because undeserved criticism distracts from criticism which is actually deserved and can help to make our community a better place. In today's essay, we'll explore one criticism that is utterly undeserved: that of Montblanc's 'precious resin'

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The Retail Aspiration

If you haven't had a chance yet, go and check out a video that Goulet Pens released last week which featured an interview between Brian Goulet and the co-founders of Nock Co, Brad Dowdy and Jeff Bruckwicki. It's an interesting look inside a growing business and, as the video was recorded a few months before it was released, viewers end up with some context around comments which were (intentionally) vague in the video. There's plenty of insights for the curious, but the one which struck me was that both the Nock guys seemed keen on transitioning to retail. For today's post, we'll have a look at the economics behind such a transition and why it's not more common. 

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Ethics, Bias, and FP reviews

The ethics of product reviews have been in the news again this week, after Amazon recognised that some practices were causing biased reviews and decided to stop it. For this week's post, I decided to return to a favourite old topic of mine and dig a little deeper into the ethics of product reviews in the fountain pen community

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