Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Goulet Loupe Tutorial



  • Why do you need a loupe? (0:39)
  • Details of the Goulet Loupe (1:39)
  • How to hold the loupe (4:27)
  • Aligning your nib tines (7:27) 

If you want to do any kind of tinkering with your fountain pen nibs, the first thing you're going to need is a good loupe. A loupe is essentially a high-powered magnifying glass, to allow you to inspect your nib in detail. You won't get very far with your nib inspection if you can't see what you're doing! Oftentimes a scratchy fountain pen nib is simply a matter of misaligned tines, and a loupe will make your life much easier when you try to aligned them.

There are a variety of different loupes out there, especially for photographers, graphic designers, and jewelers. Really, anything that magnifies will do the trick, but some loupes are easier to use than others. When looking for the right type of loupe to consider for fountain pen enthusiasts, I relied on my own personal experience and preferences when looking for just the right one. The result, the Goulet Loupe, is one that I'm proud enough to put my own name on.

Goulet Loupe Features

Goulet Loupe, 15x magnifying glass with LED lights.


One of the most important features it has is a wide viewing field which is great for those with little experience viewing their fountain pen nib under magnification. There are stronger powered loupes out there, but this one strikes a nice balance between high magnification (15x) and ease of use.


Magnification allows for easier inspection of your fountain pen nib.



It's really important to me that Goulet offers a loupe that is a really good value. Loupes can get really expensive, and if you're a professional jeweler inspecting diamonds worth 1/2 million dollars, it's probably worth it to spend $100 or much more on a loupe. Normally I feel that you should always 'save up and buy the best' when it comes to tools (this is something my dad drilled into me from an early age), but in this case I just don't see the benefit of buying an expensive loupe for the vast majority of fountain pen users. For the enthusiast, this loupe will be well-suited for casual inspection of your pens and nibs. I think you'll find that it's a great value for what you're paying.


Loupes are critical for inspecting the alignment of your nib tines. 


It also features built-in LED's, which can be handy in certain low-light situations. This isn't a critical part of the loupe as you can certainly get by just fine without it if you are in a well-lit room, but it's always nice to have the option to flip on the LED's and hit light directly on the area you're inspecting. The loupe takes 3 AAA batteries, which aren't included. I would run into funny customs/shipping challenges shipping batteries, so I opted to leave them out.


Built-in LED lights assist in low-light conditions.


The Goulet Loupe is priced reasonably at $12.50, and is just one of the latest nib tuning tools we've developed along with Brass Sheets, Micromesh, and Mylar Paper. We're also offering these all together as a nib tuning kit. We're on a campaign to empower the everyday user to get more function out of their pens, so look for more videos to come soon.

Write On,
Brian Goulet
 

1 comment:

  1. The proper way to check tine alignment is to hold the pen with the nib pointing and the tines at eye-level. With the feed facing away from you, tilt the pen towards you at an angle of 30 to 45 degrees and inspect the tines with your loupe.

    Looking at the tines with the nib pointing flat at you is far less effective. There is (was?) a graphic showing this technique somewhere on Richard Binder's "Reference" Web pages. But I can't find it right today.

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