If you are reading this then in all probability you have been searching online to find out are fountain pens better than ballpoints?
The simple answer is yes absolutely 100%. Here are 10 reasons why fountain pens are better than ballpoint pens. after reading this your life will change for the better and you will throw all your ball pens out as you will not need them anymore.
Table of Contents
1. Way Cooler
When it comes to fountain pens vs ballpoints fountain pens are way cooler, ballpoint pens are dull and uninteresting. if you are at school, college, or at work and scribbling away with your Bic no one’s going to take a blind bit of notice of that dreary old ballpoint in your hand.
However, if you are using a fountain pen you suddenly become way cooler and more interesting to your classmates and work colleagues. You are no longer holding an ordinary writing utensil as a fountain pen holds a certain mystique.
It’s a conversation starter people will notice that there is something different about you and start asking you questions about your fountain pen such as what’s it like to write with, wow I love that shade of green ink. (green ink is the color of the looney brigade but that is why I love it so much), where did you get it from etc. etc.
When was the last time someone took any interest in the ballpoint pen on your desk unless they were nicking it? You don’t need to read the next nine reasons. For this reason alone, go out and buy yourself a fountain pen and instantly become cool. You don’t need to spend a fortune and can pick a Chinese fountain pen up for a few dollars that looks way more expensive than it cost.
2. More Comfortable
Writing with a fountain pen is far more comfortable than writing with a ballpoint pen. Ballpoint pens contain a thick viscous oil-based ink that requires a certain amount of pressure to roll the ball over the paper which is coated in this ink.
Fountain pens use a water-based ink that effortlessly glides across the paper with minimal pressure. This also means that you can write for longer without cramping as writing with a fountain pen is far less fatiguing than writing with a ballpoint pen.
The barrel diameter of fountain pens tends to be wider than ballpoint pens which are usually quite slim. Having a wider barrel makes a fountain pen more comfortable and easier to hold as well as giving greater control than a ballpoint pen.
Fountain pens are customizable you can change the way they write and their appearance by swapping the nibs. There are endless possibilities standard nibs are available in several sizes ranging from extra fine to extra broad. There are also specialty nibs such as oblique nibs, calligraphy nibs, and italic nibs. If that’s not enough you can even have your nib custom ground and polished by a specialist to create your perfect pen.
With a ballpoint pen you are stuck with the refill its ball and writing characteristics it may be available in a fine medium or broad but that’s your lot.
4. Environmentally Friendly
A fountain pen will last a lifetime if cared for properly and they are far more environmentally friendly than ballpoint pens. Ballpoints are a disposable item and are very difficult to recycle so they end up in land-fill. Even if you refill a ballpoint the old refill still ends up in the trash.
If you are using bottled ink rather than cartridges, then you are reducing your impact on the environment as the only thing you are going to throw away is the empty ink bottles These can be recycled and last way longer than ballpoint refills.
5. Personalised Writing
There is something about writing with a fountain pen that feels more intimate than with a ballpoint pen. The way the nib interacts with the paper is just a more far pleasurable experience that gives inner satisfaction as you write.
It adds a touch of class, when someone receives a letter or thank you note it is instantly recognizable that the sender used a fountain pen to write it. They appreciate it more as subconsciously they think that this person cares and they have taken care and attention when wrote it.
A letter or note written with a ballpoint may have the same sentiment but it lacks that je ne sais quoi.
Fountain pens are gorgeous and have a wow factor, they are elegant and sophisticated, a thing of beauty to behold. When you see a fountain pen even if you do not own one yourself you can still appreciate the aesthetics of the pen.
Ballpoints, by comparison, are an ugly duckling but with no Hans Christian Anderson happy E
ending they are forever destined to remain ugly and never turn into a beautiful swan.
7. Line Variation
One of the big advantages a fountain pen has over a ballpoint pen is line variation. The nib of a fountain pen is flexible and increasing and decreasing the pressure applied to the nib will affect the width of the line that is being written.
This flexibility of the nib varies depending on the shape and type of nib material. Steel nibs tend to be less flexible than 14K and 18K gold nibs. Although there are some cheap specialist nibs such as the Zebra G Nib which is very popular for writing calligraphy and used by manga artists.
With a ballpoint pen you are stuck with a fixed-line width and no variation a 0.7mm ballpoint writes a 0.7mm wide line. (this is not strictly true as not all of the diameter of the ball is in contact with the paper so the line width is always going to be less than the diameter of the ball) It is also the reason why fine liners have a fiber tip instead of a ball as they can consistently produce an accurate line width.
8. Huge Range of Ink
Ballpoint pens are usually available with either a black, blue, red, or green ink refill fitted. In fact, black and blue far outsell red and green so some ballpoint pen manufacturers don’t even bother making red or green ink pens.
Yawn, Yawn, Yawn boring plain old black and blue. Whereas fountain pen bottled ink is available in a huge range of colors and shades. If you take Diamine, for example, they have well over 100 colors plus shimmer inks that give off a gold or silver shimmer and special editions.
9. Proper Penmanship
Using a fountain pen teaches proper penmanship which is the art or skill of writing by hand. Once mastered you will have beautiful legible handwriting. In fact, some junior schools are so convinced by the benefits of using a fountain pen they insist on their pupils using them.
10. More Interesting
When you own a fountain pen it becomes much more than just another writing instrument such as a ballpoint pen is. It is a hobby a chance to experiment with different pens, inks, and nibs. Then there are the rituals like cleaning and caring for it.
Online there are many places where you can share your experiences and meet fellow fountain pen enthusiasts. Such as the fountain pen network and Reddit r/fountainpen. You can show off your latest pen and ask questions from the community.
Ballpoint pens just don’t have the same appeal they are considered to be a functional writing instrument and merely a way of putting ink onto paper in a controlled manner to leave a permanent mark.