Brian Goulet compares the paper in the Quo Vadis Habana notebook vs Leuchtturm 1917 and Moleskine: which is most fountain pen friendly?

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These videos by Brian Goulet of the Goulet Pen Company are older but still relevant, so I am putting them here as reference for anyone who is looking for information comparing the paper in the Quo Vadis Habana notebook vs the Leuchtturm 1917 and the Moleskine notebooks.

Here you can see Brian’s video where he answers a reader’s question about which he prefers for use with fountain pens: the Habana notebook or the Leuchtturm 1917. (Spoiler alert: it’s the Habana!)

In these videos, Brian does a detailed comparison between the Moleskine notebook and the Habana. In Part 1 he compares the features, and in Part 2 he compares the papers and how they perform with fountain pens.

In fairness, the Habana paper is 85 gsm so naturally it will perform better with fountain pens than Leuchtturm 1917 (with 80 gsm paper) and Moleskine (70 gsm). Aside from the weights of the papers, the Leuchtturm and Moleskine papers are both more absorbent than the Habana paper, which is specifically designed to resist feathering and bleed-through with most fountain pen inks.

2 thoughts on “Brian Goulet compares the paper in the Quo Vadis Habana notebook vs Leuchtturm 1917 and Moleskine: which is most fountain pen friendly?

  1. [As an aside, I tried to post this comment below; there were a couple of error messages because of the expired captcha or something, and then the system says “you’ve already posted this” and doesn’t let me post the same text; while my comment doesn’t show after refreshing the page. Would be nice if this bug were removed.]

    I guess this is a good place to express a pet peeve that I have with the “alternative” notebook manufacturers (by “alternative” I mean those who are not Moleskine—sorry guys, but although I try to avoid Moleskines, but Modo&Modo captured “moleskine” as a brand and won the mindshare battle among the general public).

    Namely, there is a persistent blind spot, an absence in their lineups of a specific sub-category of notebooks. There is _no_ manufacturer (at least none that I could find) that does: _soft_ cover, elastic closure, more than 80 sheets (I’d prefer 92 and up), and _blank_ (plain) paper. (And sewn binding—no spiral bindings please).

    And, _no_ such combination exists in _white_ fountain-pen-friendly paper (even Moleskine that makes such notebooks uses ivory paper of terrible quality).

    Leuchtturm1917 softcover have only 60 sheets, Rhodiarama softcover have 80 sheets (and non-fountain-pen-friendly paper—yes, Rhodiarama paper is different from the rest of the Rhodia family). Zequenz is softcover and has blank paper, but doesn’t have an elastic closure. Ditto Seven Seas (Tomoe River paper). Clairefontaine MyEssential has 96 sheets and 95 gsm paper—but I’ve only seen ruled ones. Clairefontaine cloth-bound Age Bag has 96 sheets, is available in plain/blank paper, and, apparently, has white paper—but no elastic closure.

    Would it kill Clairefontaine to take its MyEssential and make a variety that uses white _blank_ paper in it? Or add an elastic closure to the Age Bag?

    Seriously, there is a whole unoccupied category in notebooks, and no one seems to care…. I really try to avoid Moleskines (bc I want to use my fountain pens more), but with my preference for a book with a respectable number of pages, soft cover, elastic closure, and blank pages, I don’t seem to have an alternative.

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