A customer sent us a link to this video on YouTube featuring Richard Binder!
Mr. Binder is a “nibmeister” and fountain pen repairer in the US. His richardspens.com website has many great articles on vintage pens and fountain pen knowledge. His website also used to sell both new and vintage pens, but if you happen to be at a pen show in the US where is he working, you can stop by his table and get one of your nibs that isn’t working quite right tuned to your exact, personal specifications. I hear that his table is always packed with a long line-up, so you might want to get there early! In fact, we’ve had a few customers who made a trip to a US pen show just to get one or more of their pen nibs tuned.
I believe Mr. Binder may be moving out of regular service into retirement, but I’m not sure exactly what’s going on with that or the timelines. He used to sell pens on his website, and you could upgrade to changes or specifications on his nib for you, but I think now his website just offers the nib units for sale. If you have something special in mind, you may want to grab one and ask Mr. Binder for some nib modifications before they’re all gone.
I do know, however, that I have a Binder flex nib for my Edison Beaumont, and it’s lovely! These days, it seems like I don’t have much time to play with it, but I’ve earmarked some afternoons in the future (maybe after the baby is in Kindergarten…).
In the video, he makes a couple of points that are of particular interest to me. He mentions that there may only be half a dozen people in the world with the knowledge and skills to repair fountain pens and nibs as he does. He also mentions that although people say handwriting is a dying art, people may also be moving more and more to fountain pens and away from the isolation and computerization of technology. I guess I’m hoping that the two of these together will mean that the knowledge that seems to be dying will be revived as more young people become interested in this “old technology.”
*Interesting Wonder Pens trivia: in the Macleans article about ink and fountain pens, where they came to our tiny shop to ask us a few questions and took that very cool stop motion video of artist Nimit Malavia doing his magic, they also interviewed Mr. Binder!
*Interesting Wonder Pens trivia two: Jon saw the photo of the dog and baby from the Kappan Stationery post, and said I should’ve put up another photo, since it left the dog “exposed” – but I got a record TWO comments on the photo in the shop the next day 🙂