For day six, I chose a nice burgundy Sheaffer Imperial II Deluxe that I bought as new old stock from Peyton Street Pens. This pen was made in the early 1960s, and has a palladium silver Triumph style nib and the Touchdown filling system. It is one of the last of the fountain pens produced as serious writing instruments, before the craze for cartridge fillers and the dominance of cheap, disposable ballpoints.
Although brown is a colour I prefer to use for many manuscripts, I had not used a brown ink yet in this series of tests, so I decided to ink it up with Noodlers Kiowa Pecan. The filling system on this pen is a pleasure to use. You just unscrew the knob, pull out the plunger, dip the nib into the ink bottle, and push the plunger down. After you wait a moment, the pen is filled with enough ink to last you for a solid day's writing.
This Sheaffer is light, since it is made mostly of plastic, but it sits nicely in the hand and is very easy to write with. The nib is incredibly smooth, in part because the tip is slightly upturned. This design feature, first seen in the Waverley nib back in 1864 and all but forgotten by most pen manufacturers. By altering the angle at which the nib meets the paper, it causes it to write more smoothly than it otherwise would. As a result, this pen is a dream to write with. It is another pen every serious writer ought to think about owning. My only real concern with it is that the clip, although it does snap onto the body, does not do so securely enough for my tastes. I'd never consider clipping one of these in a shirt pocket; I'd always carry it in a pouch, lest something happen to it. When considered in terms of the price, and performance, of modern pens, this pen was an incredible bargain.
Kiowa Pecan is a nice medium brown, although it is a bit duller than my favourite browns. It is also a fairly dry ink, although with this nib, that was never an issue. At times, this can even be an advantage, since it seems to dry more quickly on the page than many other inks. If you are concerned about drying times, this would be a good ink to consider. It is also a nice colour for manuscripts, dark enough to read easily, although marking up a page written in Kiowa Pecan with some reds or oranges might prevent your edits from standing out easily. On the other hand, any very dark ink will show up just fine.
Altogether on day six, I managed to write another 1,992 words, for a total to date of 12,612 words. Since this total averages out to slightly more than two thousand words per day, I am comfortably ahead of my target. On the other hand, I dare not allow myself to grow complacent, since a single day of laziness could melt that lead away and leave me barely where I need to be. And, of course, the later in the month it is, the more serious any slowdown can be.