Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Brian Gray of Edison Pen Co. Guest Interview Tonight (11/30/10)

Tuesday: Write Time at 9 Itinerary for 11/30/10

Custom Edison Bulb-Filler Pen
On tonight's Write Time at 9 broadcast we have a special guest, Brian Gray of the Edison Pen Co. That's right, it'll be Brian G times two!! Brian has been making pens for over twelve years and has a loyal following in the fountain pen community. He's known mostly for his highly impressive custom pen work, including using beautiful resin and ebonite pens with unique filling mechanism like the bulb-filler and blow-filler.

Brian's going to be calling in tonight and we'll be having a casual chat about pens and writing. I am known more for the paper, ink, and other paraphernalia, and Brian Gray is the pen guy. We'll be having a dynamic and well-rounded discussion on all things writing.

The itinerary is going to be fairly free-form, but if there is anything specific you'd like us to discuss, just post it here in the comments or ask us live tonight in the chatroom during our broadcast. Here are a few things we'll touch on:
  • How Brian got into making pens
  • What's the 'Edison' theme all about
  • Intro nib adjusting
  • Fancy pen materials
  • Nib grinding, fancy nib stuff
  • Urushi lacquerwork
  • Joint blog promotion giveaway!
  • Noodler's Flex Nib pens
  • Other stuff/rambling tangents

The joint blog promotion giveaway needs a little explanation. Brian and I will be teaming up to do tandem giveaways on each of our blogs, and we'll be announcing just what that will be during the broadcast. It will be very exciting, I promise you!

We have some updated news on Noodler's Flex Nib Pens as well, which will be coming very soon. You can sign up for an email notification for when they're available here.

So if you have the time, make sure you stop by tonight at 9pm EST for Write Time at 9! Also, be sure to stop by the Edison Pen Co. website/blog and check out Brian's sweet pens. If you can't make it live to the broadcast, we'll record it for you as always and have it available tomorrow morning!

So what would you like to ask Brian (either of us!)?

Monday, November 29, 2010

What 'Black Swannish' color would you like to see next?

Monday: Ink Stuff

What's next??
Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses has been a very intriguing and popular color. Noodler's has mentioned that this will be the first in a new series of highly-shading fountain pen inks, and I don't believe the future colors are set in stone.

What color of high-shading ink ala Black Swan would you like to see come out next? I can pass the word up and maybe encourage your next color preference (no promises though!).

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cleaning Ink Behind the Converter Piston Seal

Sunday: Tips and Tricks

I posted a blog earlier today about how I was stumped at how to clean ink behind the piston seal of a cartridge converter:


Thanks to some great suggestions from the Ink Nouveau readers, I was given the advice that you can actually unscrew the back metal section of the converter, which then allows you to completely disassemble and clean the inside of the converter. I had tried this but apparently didn't twist the back off hard enough! :P

I thought it garnered a video, so here it is explaining how to do it.


Link to YouTube for more viewing options.

I'm humbled that I hadn't figured this out on my own, and I thank everyone for letting me know about this. I've been asked about this lately, so I'm thrilled to now have a video to show people how to do it themselves. As always, if you have any tips or ideas you'd like to share with the writing community, shoot me an email.

Can you clean behind the piston seal of a converter?

Sunday: Tips and Tricks

There are many pens out there known as 'cartridge/converter' pens. They are generally less expensive than pens with other filling mechanisms, so many fountain pen users start out with this type of pen. They are called 'C/C' pens for short, and they are extremely popular because they accept both pre-filled cartridges and piston converters for bottle filling.

Though there are many types of piston converters since many brands of C/C pens have proprietary designs, the one thing they all share in common is that they are removable/replaceable from the pen.

One question I get asked from time to time is what do you do if/when ink gets behind the piston seal of the converter, like this?


This is one thing that's had me stumped for a long time. The converters aren't made to be disassembled, and trying to clean behind the seal by forcing water behind it would only cause more damage. A converter like this will run you about $5 to replace, so my best recommendation when you run into this scenario is to either replace it with a new one, or stick to using a color similar to one that is behind the piston seal (in this case, it's blue).

I would love to be able to come up with some magical solution to fixing this ink issue in the converter, but unfortunately, replacing it is the only solution I have, and the only one I've been able to find by scouring the writing forums and blogs. This is not an incredibly rare issue, it's something that's bound to happen to every converter sooner or later. Do you know of a solution for this problem?

***The people spoke, and as a response to everyone's great feedback, I was able to figure out a way to salvage your old piston converters. Check out the new video here I posted about how to disassemble and clean them.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Improvements to GouletPens.com's Swab Shop

Saturday: Goulet Pen Co. Stuff- Swab Shop Improvements

A special thanks goes to my incredibly smart, talented (and patient!) wife Rachel, whose incredible computer wizardry allows this Swab Shop to even be possible.

If you've never seen the Swab Shop, you have to go and check it out. It's an interactive ink swab comparison tool that my wife and I put together to allow you to see color-adjusted ink swabs of all of the fountain pen inks we have available at GouletPens.com.

Interactive Tool

We originally set up the Swab Shop to be an individual ink color comparison tool. Here's the original setup:



We're now calling this feature the 'Interactive Tool'. It's a pretty simple setup, you select any ink color you want to see from the five drop-downs, and you can compare 5 inks at a time. The idea was that if you have a color you know and love, you could find one comparable to it with this tool. For example, say you really like Caran d'Ache Amazon, but it's a little pricey to be your daily ink. If you want to find something comparable, you might pull these up:



This worked well for a while, when we only had about 150 ink colors. We now carry around 300 inks, many of which have names that are not even suggestive to their colors. Looking at a list of 300 names and trying to find a 'green' proves quite challenging at times. So we wanted to add a way to view like colors on a single page. Thus......

View By Color Group

Using the same color-adjusted swabs, we wanted to lay out entire groups of colors to make it easy to narrow down your ink color search if you're just looking for a 'type' of color. Viewing the whole page can give you an idea of the names of the individual inks in that color range, then you can use the Interactive Tool to view those specific colors you want to compare side-by-side. We've listed these in a general order according to the hue of the ink, not in any particular brand/name order:



We have 11 different color groups:
  • Blacks and greys
  • Blue-blacks and dark blues
  • Blues
  • Browns
  • Greens
  • Pinks
  • Purples
  • Reds
  • Turquoises
  • Yellows and Oranges
  • Highlighters and Invisibles
You can navigate to any one of these groups from any other color group page by just clicking on the color at the top of the screen:



Now when you're comparing 25 different black inks, you won't be flustered with a limit of viewing 5 inks at a time! But of course we wanted to take this a step further too. If you are loyal to a certain brand and want to shop within it, we have pages laid out for each brand of ink as well....

View By Ink Brand

This is perhaps even more exciting than the View By Color Group pages, because there are some brands (like Noodler's) where there is no color sheet available for the brand. Some brands like J. Herbin and Private Reserve do provide color images of their ink colors (though I can't speak to what degree they have been adjusted for computer viewing). In general, though, it is hard to find a comprehensive single-location where an entire brand of ink colors could be viewed (I should say, WAS hard to find until now!).

So we're pleased to announce that we've grouped together all of our ink brands so you can view the entire line of inks (at least that are available through us) on a single page. Like so:



'Add to Cart' Buttons:

We have two other features as well that are somewhat recent additions to the Swab Shop. One is the 'add sample to cart' button. If you're on the Interactive Tool page, you'll notice there is a yellow button beneath each swab that says 'add sample to cart'. Clicking this will add one 2ml ink sample into your shopping cart, and you won't even have to navigate away from the Swab Shop! The other button labeled 'add bottle to cart' will add the most popular size of ink bottle (if multiple sizes are available for that color) to your cart without navigating away from the page. Both of these buttons are currently only on the swabs on the Interactive Tool page, but we're working on getting them available on the View by Color Group and View by Ink Brand pages, too.


We do have some swabs still to add, so please be patient on those! This whole thing takes a tremendous amount of time and effort, so patience is key. We're doing innovative things like this in our 'spare time' when we're not running the daily GPC operations, tending to our teething 10-month old, or doing other reviews and updates for Ink Nouveau.

Hopefully, all of these changes we've made will only enhance your experience on our Swab Shop and GouletPens.com. The Swab Shop is a completely free tool that we provide to you, so we encourage you to share it with all of your inky friends. We're always looking to enhance what we can do for the writing community, so please post here in the comments if you have any suggestions for improvements we can make for the Swab Shop (or any other thing we do!).

Friday, November 26, 2010

Rhodia Webbie DotPads in 2011

Friday: Random Cool Stuff

Screenshot taken from RhodiaDrive.com
It was announced on Rhodia Drive this week that we can expect to see the popular Rhodia Webnotebook (affectionately known as the 'Webbie') in dotpad format in the late-spring/early summer of 2011. It's expected to have the same off-white paper already familiar in the Webbie, but with dots! Here's a review I did earlier about the Rhodia dotpads.

Webbies are currently available in lined and blank format, in both large (5.5"x8.25") and small (3.5"x5.5") sizes. The dotpads have been incredibly popular, so this is a very welcome and anticipated new arrival!

Of course we're going to be stocking them at GouletPens.com as soon as we can possibly get our hands on them. You're going to have to be patient, though, as it will likely be the end of April of 2011 before they arrive. But Rhodia responds!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Have a Happy Thanksgiving. I know I'm thankful that I get to do what I love, share my passion with other passionate people, and work with my wife and son (albeit a LOT) with our little business. I am especially thankful for all of our customers of GouletPens.com and fans of Ink Nouveau. Without you all, I would not get to do what I do. I raise a turkey leg as a toast in honor of you all!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ink Drop Theme for December!

Wednesday: Write Time at 9

Wednesday is normally when we'd be posting the recorded video broadcast of our Write Time at 9, but we canceled it this week because of family coming in for Thanksgiving. We were going to announce December's Ink Drop theme, so we'll just do it in written form instead. 

There were a lot of great guesses for what the theme might be in yesterday's blog post, I think my favorite was a 'Festivus' theme, haha! Well, that's not it, but maybe we'll keep it on the backburner for next year ;)

We debated quite a bit about what to do for this month's theme. We personally celebrate Christmas, but not everyone does. We don't want to 'force' any type of holiday or anything on anyone, so we're covering our bases and making it impossible to offend anyone. So our December theme is:

Merry Happy!

What colors do you think will be in December's drop?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Special Write Time at 9 with Brian Gray of Edison Pens, next week

Tuesday: Write Time Itinerary

We'd originally planned to keep Write Time on schedule this week. However, we've had a change of plans with family coming in for Thanksgiving, so we're going to cancel this week to spend time with family. Sorry if it causes any inconvenience!

We do have a special Write Time scheduled for next week though! Brian Gray of the Edison Pen Company is going to join us live via phone (ala Stephanie Smith) and talk about his custom pens, his awesome Urushi pen project and more! It'll surely be worth tuning in. Let me know if there's anything you want to ask him!

Thanks everyone for all of your support lately, Rachel and I have been really busting hump and honestly need this Thanksgiving break! We're going to stop from shipping out any orders until next week, thanks so much for your patience there.

Tomorrow, instead of a Write Time video post, we'll be posting our Ink Drop theme for December!! What do you think it will be?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Noodler's Black Swan Feedback

Monday: Ink Stuff


This is the hot new ink! Nathan's video on it sparked a lot of excitement about it, though the real test is going to be the 500+ pens that start flowing with it this week as the shipments begin to drop. I personally inked it up in two pens, and I do really like the color and the shading effect. Here's a snapshot of it in case you missed it the other day (though I'm not crazy 100% confident in my adjustment of the color, it at least gives you an idea):


I've read one other review where the user wasn't thrilled with the ink, but the pen they used was a Pilot 78g, so I question it a little bit. It's pretty evident to me from actually using the ink that this is going to be one that sparks a lot of conversation. The ink acts very differently in different pens, and really has a wide range of colors depending on its usage. Nathan apparently designed the ink for flex nibs and very wet writers, I personally used my Pelikan m800 italic 1.5mm in the pic above.

Since there are so many Ink Nouveau readers out there who are getting this ink in soon, I'm going to ask for your feedback once you have a chance to thoroughly test out this ink. I'll work up my own review of the ink over T-day weekend, and I'd love it if we could start a conversation (in the comments) about the ink on next Monday's post when I put up my review.

So what are your expectations for Black Swan?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Changing a Noodler's Nib Creaper Rollerball Tip

Sunday: Tips and Tricks

 

Noodler's Nib Creaper Rollerball Tip Replacement

Noodler's just came out with the Nib Creaper Rollerball pen, a refillable rollerball pen that uses fountain pen ink! It's a really cool pen and one I've enjoyed playing with. One of the best things about it is that the tip is replaceable in case you accidentally drop or damage it.

Here's the pen:
It's a clear demonstrator piston-filling rollerball pen. It uses the same fountain pen ink you (likely) already have.
 The feed is threaded and unscrews from the body of the pen.
The part that you actually receive when you purchase the replacement nib is only the rollerball tip and wick, not the ebonite feed (just be aware of that!). I know many people were anticipating using the replacement tips to convert other pens to rollerballs, but the replacement tip is only for the rollerball pen.
 Removing the tip from the feed couldn't really be easier. A pair of pliers and a little tug will take care of it!
To put the new one in, just push it in with your fingers (don't push the tip of the rollerball against anything hard, otherwise you might end up damaging the tip you just replaced!).
Then screw the feed back into the body. Done!
Then you're all set!

Noodler's Nib Creaper Rollerball pens ($14) and replacement tips ($0.50) are available at GouletPens.com.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Black Friday......night....

We were hoping yesterday that the Fedex truck with our 1670 ink would arrive in the morning. It didn't. We (and you) ended up waiting all day into the night for it to show up.

We were crazy amped up all day long, waiting and waiting and waiting as the anticipation built all day. We were constantly checking our list of in-stock requests for all of our new fancy stuff. It's absolutely amazing the excitement that's buzzing around everything, particularly the new Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses and a restocking of our largest shipment yet of J. Herbin 1670 (Rouge Hematite) ink.

We received the Black Swan and Noodler's pens on Thursday, but decided to wait until Friday to list everything for sale, because the 1670 ink was due to come in and we knew a lot of people wanted to get both. Usually, Fedex shipments arrive to us in the morning, but not yesterday. Our tracking # said it was put on a truck for delivery at 8:53am, and it arrived to us at....9:30pm!!!! The Fedex guy looked REAL tired, let me tell you. He said he almost put off our shipment until tomorrow, but he was really glad he didn't when I told him that everyone was waiting for it!

But we're thankful it came in even as late as it did. We were so antsy, so excited, it was a crazy rollercoaster of a day. But now the real work begins for us....Rachel and I have to process the orders, pack and ship them all, reinventory, restock everything that's sold.....we're going to have one busy weekend!!

We appreciate everyone's patience. Everyone was a real great sport, we were all having fun bantering on Twitter and in the comments on yesterday's blog post, it was great! The writing community is really so awesome. You all freakin' rock!

Forgive me if the blog will be a little 'light' for the next few days. I'll still look to keep it going though. We'll be working hard on the GPC side of things for a few days here....now you'll all just have to wait for us for everything to come to YOU!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Black Friday is apparently TODAY for GouletPens!!

I think today is going to be a busy day.

There are a lot of things happening over at GouletPens.com today. Here's what we have going up for sale at some point today:
  • Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses
  • J. Herbin 1670
  • Exclusive 'test market' Noodler's Nib Creaper Fountain Pens
  • Pelikan Edelstein Onyx
Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses
 

This ink has created a lot of buzz lately. It was only announced a week ago today that it even existed. We immediately ordered it and received our shipment in yesterday. We decided to wait a day to list it though because the 1670 is expected to come in today and we wanted to wait list them together since we figured there would be a lot of people who'd want both inks. 1670 could come at 8am, or 8pm, we have no idea. As soon as we get it in and check it all out, we're going to list everything at once and let the madness begin!

I simply couldn't resist, I had to try the ink for myself. I did a swab of it and also inked up my Pelikan M800 italic to see what the fuss is all about. Keep in mind, these are fairly quick pictures and color edits, and though they are color adjusted, they appear a little more purple in the pics here than in person. Check it out:

My take on it? Pretty friggin' sweet. It has some intense shading, and is a pretty wet writing ink. It writes very nicely in my italic, and in the Noodler's Nib Creaper pen I tried it in. It's a color pretty close to Diamine Syrah, but with much wilder shading. I don't think this ink will be one to disappoint, especially if you're using a flex or italic nib.

Black Swan comes in 3 ounce bottles and we'll be selling it for $12.50 a bottle, a pretty darn good price for what you get! We've been told by our distributor that they don't have any more, so once we're out, we're out. I suspect it will go fast, probably by the end of the day, if not in a matter of hours after we list it.

We aren't imposing a limit-per-person rule for this ink, but we do ask if you please aren't in dire need of multiple bottles that you give others a chance to purchase. The demand for the ink has spiked rapidly and we're expecting to get cleared out in record time. We know not everyone that wants it will get a chance to get it from this first batch, and we're so sorry about that! 

J. Herbin Rouge Hematite (1670 anniversary ink)


This is a limited edition ink, and that's no joke. The last shipment of it we had was in September, and that was sold out in 2 hours. Before that, it was July, and that also sold out in 2 hours. In the last 5+ months we have had this ink in stock on our website for less than 5 hours total.

We're happy to announce that we're expecting our largest shipment of 1670 ink that we've ever received to arrive today. Barring any shipping damage or something crazy, we will look to have it listed for sale as soon as it comes in and we are able to inventory the bottles. If you haven't been able to get it before, today will be your best chance yet.

This will be the first time we've ever sold this ink without a 'one-per-person' rule!! Grab as many as you like, especially keeping in mind these will make GREAT Christmas gifts! The ink comes in a 50ml bottle and costs $20 at GouletPens.com.

Noodler's Nib Creaper Fountain Pen

This pen is one that you've probably never seen. I know I hadn't before we got them in yesterday! They're based on the same body type as the Noodler's Nib Creaper Rollerball pen (right), which is currently regularly available for sale.


The Nib Creaper Fountain pen has a ventless nib. What that means is there's no air 'breather' hole in it like most fountain pens. From what I understand, this is a design more common in certain vintage pens. Here's some pics of the pen:


Like the rollerball, it's a piston-filling pen with a blind cap:


Here's the difference in the nib on the Noodler's Piston Fountain Pen (left) and Nib Creaper (right):


It's important to note that this pen does not have the ebonite feed like the other Noodler's pens, but they do have nibs with a hint of flex to them. I don't think I would advertise them as 'flex' pens, but there is a bit of line variation as you write. The Noodler's 'Flex' nib pens are expected in the next couple of weeks.

At GouletPens.com we have an exclusive, limited stock of these Nib Creaper ventless nib fountain pens, and once they're gone I don't know if they'll ever come back. A lot of that will have to do with how popular they are! So what I'll need is for anyone who purchases one to be sure to give us feedback about its use. We're going to look to set up some kind of online survey especially for this purpose, and we'll contact you about it if you buy one. At $14, it's not a bad pen!!

Pelikan Edelstein Onyx


It's been months since we've ordered this ink, and for some reason Pelikan hadn't sent any into the US, until now! We received our backorder yesterday, completely out of the blue. So, it's getting lumped in with the release of all this other stuff today!! Why not? I did a review of this ink here on Ink Nouveau as I did have one test bottle, so you can check that out.

This ink will be available in a fairly limited quantity at GouletPens.com. A 50ml bottle goes for $19.

My Recommendation:


If you really want any of this stuff here, do these things:
  1. Sign up for the email notification for whatever of these products you want. 
  2. Load up your cart at GouletPens.com with whatever else you want first (other inks, paper, wax seal stuff, etc). You can save your cart and have everything but this limited stock stuff ready to go. When you get the email notification on whatever it is you're waiting for, you can quickly load it in your cart.
  3. Checkout fast! Complete your payment for the whole purchase, and you're giving yourself the best chance at getting the good stuff! You aren't reserving anything just by having it in your cart, it's all about who checks out first.
I will warn you, we're expecting an extremely high volume of purchases this weekend. We've geared up with an overall increase in our inventory, but we're sure to be out of stock on more products than usual. We're going to reorder things as quickly as we can, but because of this coming weekend followed by Thanksgiving, expect some holes.

Also, expect it may take a little longer than our 24-36 hour typical ship time. It's just me and Rachel working here, and we'll be pulling loooooong days, but we can only pack so many orders in a day. We're going to be working like crazy people, so your patience is appreciated.

It's going to be a crazy fun day!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A formal apology to our international fans and customers

I want to formally apologize for the way I spoke about our international shipping policies during Tuesday's Write Time at 9 broadcast. It's clear to me that my mini-rant was inappropriate and did not at all come across well. I apologize for this profusely and meant in no way to offend any of our international fans and customers. That's the problem with a live broadcast is that we don't get to filter our thoughts before it's published before the world, and in this case, I feel I spoke hastily and without careful thought. It also didn't help that the chartroom was broken during the broadcast, so I couldn't even gauge anyone's reaction as I spoke.

The rant that I went on was simply a frustration of mine that there are almost no protective measures that a small business like ours can put in place against fraudulent transactions with online purchases. What little protection we do have does not apply to us for international customers. This isn't an ideology issue, it's that literally no one out there will offer us protection (USPS, Fedex, UPS, Paypal, credit card merchants like Visa, Mastercard, etc) if we are in fact violated from someone outside of the US. Paypal is the only service that does offer protection, but that is only if you ship to a verified address to the US, Canada, and the UK with a package containing a signature confirmation (something only offered through UPS and Fedex at an incredibly high price). This still leaves the vast majority of international transactions entirely unprotected.

We have been victims of fraud in the past, and there was simply nothing we could do about it. We just lost that money. We're not a big corporation or anything that can absorb these types of losses easily, so literally the only protective measure we can put in place is to use our own judgment on an order-by-order basis. That's certainly not an easy decision to make.

This is something that Rachel and I have really had heavy on our hearts lately. The vast majority of our international customers have been fantastic, but we have had some bad experiences. We've been weighing out the pros and cons of doing international shipping through our website, through paypal only, and every other option. Ultimately, what I think we've decided is to continue international shipping as we have been doing through our website. There still isn't any protection for us, other than our own judgement about individual orders that raise red flags. The potential losses we could face with international fraud are minimal compared to the stellar reputation we've kept up on FPN and other international sites. Please accept our utmost apology and understand that we did not intend to insult the international community, even though that's how it may have seemed.

As a means of amends, we are lowering the price of our international Ink Drop membership from $15 to $12.50 moving forward, and we have enabled all of our international shipping options as before. We want to welcome international customers to our store and hope that you will continue to be fans of ours.

Rhodia Webnotebooks: Versions 1.0, 2.0, 3.0?????

In the last couple of years since the Rhodia Webnotebook was introduced, it's been through quite a few changes. These changes haven't resulted in 'official' name differences or changes in SKU's, but they have been coined by the online writing community as 'verison x.0'. I'm going to tell you exactly how to tell the difference between the three versions and what makes them different from each other.

Version 1.0
This was the first (duh) version introduced some 2.5ish years ago. It's what got the Webnotebook as a known quantity in the US, but the paper was a bit lacking for the fountain pen community.

The most distinguishing factor of this version is its paper was 80g, which in and of itself is not the problem, it's that it bled through the back of the sheet. The paper was not made by Clairefontaine. Other than that, the journal was great. But paper is what matters first and foremost for fountain pen users. The people spoke, and Exaclair (the sole US distributor of Rhodia products) changed the paper in the US versions of the Webnotebook to create version 2.0. All journals outside the US remained as version 1.0.

Version 2.0
Everything stayed the same (cover, ribbon marker, back pocket, etc) except version 2.0 had smoother, much more ink resistant paper with 90g thickness. This paper is made by Clairefontaine in France:
You can't tell the difference between the two versions just looking at the front of the 1.0 and 2.0:
But you can if you flip them over and look at the back. The left one is the 80g V1.0, and the right one is the 90g V2.0:
The paper color was darker from 1.0 to 2.0:
Both have the Rhodia logos, but the 2.0 is a much more 'ivory' color:
The paper performance is significantly different too. V2.0 paper is smoother and resists ink better, making lines sharp and the color pop:
And look at the difference in the bleedthrough on the back:
The thicker paper didn't make a real significant difference in the overall thickness of the journal (1.0 left, 2.0 right):
But it did affect the binding. The binding was much stiffer on the V2.0, which caused a 'hump' to form near the binding when the journal was open. This was a step backwards from the 1.0 (top) to the 2.0 (bottom):
People also weren't crazy about the Rhodia logos on each page. The people again spoke, and Exaclair again listened. Changes were made, and thus came the latest version, the 3.0!!

Version 3.0
This is the newest and latest version. The logo was removed from the pages, and the binding was improved. Also, this version was moved from being a US-only journal to being distributed worldwide. So though we have three US versions, the rest of the world has only seen two (version 1.0 and 3.0). They are now all made in France.
The paper in the 3.0 is exactly the same as the 2.0, with the exception of the removal of the logo:
Ink performance and paper color are identical to the 2.0:
And the binding on the 3.0 is great, allowing the journal to lay very flat. Here's the 2.0 (top) and 3.0 (bottom):
The version 3.0 is now a fantastic journal, and is available in both ruled and blank (new, only available in 3.0 version), in two sizes with a choice of orange or black covers.

How to tell what version you have:

It's easy, just look at the back. Chances are you don't have a version 1.0 anywhere in sight. They haven't been made in probably two years, but if you happen to see a Webnotebook with 80g paper, that's the 1.0.

More likely, you are going to find yourself questioning if the Webbie you have (or want to buy) is a 2.0 or 3.0. There are two easy, yet subtle ways to tell the difference if you know what you're looking for. Obviously you can tell if you open the notebook and see a logo or not on the page, but let's assume it's wrapped and you can't open it without buying it. Here's how to tell:

1) Look at the back of the label, and see the text written about the paper specifications that's located just above the barcode. Since the 3.0s are made in France, there's a lot of French text on it. On left is 2.0, on the right is 3.0:
2) Look at the bottom of the journal, and you'll see that on the 2.0 (top) the paper wraps all around the journal, and on the 3.0 (bottom) the paper tucks into the journal behind the front cover:

I hope this helps to clarify a little bit what all of the 'version' talk means for the Webnotebooks. At GouletPens.com we do distinguish our version 2.0 and 3.0 Webnotebooks so you will know which ones you're buying without having to ask, but you'll likely have to ask other retail outlets unless they have proactively sought out to distinguish the different versions. At least now you know what you need to ask!

Even though it's been months now that the 3.0s have been made, there is still a stock of 2.0s out there that need to 'clear out' before everything is exclusively 3.0s. Until then, be vigilant!