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Fan Feedback New Materials New Pens

The Results Are In! The New Collier Will be Pearlized Juniper!

Hi Pen Fans!

Last week we explained an issue with one of our materials suppliers who is experiencing delays due the virus. As a result, we are completely out of Rock Candy for the Collier! 🙁
Click here if you did not see this post.

So we ran a poll and allowed YOU to decide what the next Collier Production Line Material would be! The results are in, and Pearlized Juniper will be the next Collier Production Line Material!

At the beginning of the poll, Lapis Lazuli Flake had a hearty lead, but as the weekend passed, Pearlized Juniper took the lead!

So we are manufacturing the Collier from Pearlized Juniper literally today!

Remember that this will be a temporary replacement for the Collier in Rock Candy. Honestly, we have no idea how long it will take to get more Rock Candy. It could be a month or it could be several months. But as soon as it does arrive, we’ll stop manufacturing the Pearlized Juniper, and resume with Rock Candy.

I estimate that it will take us a little over two weeks to get these manufactured out of Pearlized Juniper and into the hands of our retailers. I’ll keep updates timely.

Stay tuned!

Brian at Edison

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Fan Feedback

A Nice Visit From the Ann Arbor Pen Posse!

Hi Pen Fans!

Last weekend, we were able to host a visit from the Ann Arbor Pen Posse!

The reason for this post is two-fold…

1.  The visit was a ton of fun.  Hector with Inkluminati put together a wonderful blog post that is very well written, and is amazingly photographed.  It’s definitely worth sharing.

2.  A lot of people don’t realize that visits to our facility here in Ohio are welcomed by appointment.  If you belong to a pen club and would like to arrange a visit to check out how we make our pens, just reach out!

Here is the excellent blog post.

Here is the full gallery of photos.

Thanks!

Brian at Edison

https://flic.kr/p/rzuiGN

https://flic.kr/p/rRZzKt

https://flic.kr/p/rzujr3

(photos: Hector with Inklumati)
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Fan Feedback

Wanna Work for the Edison Pen Company? We’re Hiring!

Interested in working for the Edison Pen Company?  We’re looking for another full or part-time employee!  (preferred full time)

I was putting some thought into the best way to find our next employee.  What we do is very specific and niche.  There aren’t a lot of people with “Fountain Pen Manufacturer” on their resume, so I’m not sure that Craigslist is the best option!  I recently considered that our best resource for finding good employees might be our fan base!  So I thought that I’d post this on our blog as well as the various pen forums to see what kind of responses we might get.

We just recently hired a great addition to our team, but our current backlog is still being stretched farther than what we like and we are seeing greater demand from our retailers.  This makes room for another motivated employee.

Our location is North Central Ohio, not far from Sandusky.

While having specific skills would certainly give a candidate a leg-up, we will consider anyone with a passion for what we do.  Most of the skills that are needed for pen manufacture are very specific and need to be carefully taught regardless of someone’s background.  So being highly motivated, having a positive attitude, being willing to learn, and having a passion for pens are certainly the most important items that we could ask for.

That being said, skills that we would like to see in a candidate will be….

*  CNC lathe and mill operating/programming skills
*  CAD/CAM skills as related to lathes and mills
*  Manual lathe and mill operation
*  Overall fountain pen repair and maintenance skills.  Nib tuning, overall understanding of quality control as related to fountain pens.
*  General computer literacy, Mac and Windows (Word/Pages, Excel/Numbers, etc.)
*  Overall flexibility.  The job description for this position will change and evolve over the short and long term.  Everyone in our shop is a “Jack of all Trades”, and we’d expect to hire the same.

You can get a rough idea as to what we do by watching these videos…
https://edisonpen.com/behind-the-scenes

Salary will be negotiable and proportionate to what the candidate can offer as related to the above skills.

Email brian@edisonpen.com if you are interested.

Thanks!

Brian at Edison

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Fan Feedback

Letters? We Get Letters!

Hi Pen Fans!

Since the Edison Pen Company’s inception, we have always had loyal fans write us letters, thank-you notes, and correspondences of all kinds.  Obviously, running a company that manufactures fountain pens means that the literally all of our clientele are huge fans of handwritten letters, so we get to reap the benefit of lots of nice pieces of mail coming our way!  How lucky can we get? 

Up until today, we never really had a good way to display all of these wonderful letters.  Previously, we had three small cork boards that all of our fan mail went to, but they filled up about 5 years ago! 

When those filled up, We just couldn’t bring ourselves to simply read and then throw away any fan mail, so we started keeping them in a box. 

And then recently, the FPGeeks sent along all of the fan mail and entries for the Edison Pen Giveaway from back in July.  Well, this just threw us way over the edge when it came to our fan mail, and where to put it all!

Well, I finally found a way to properly display our fan mail.  I made a really large 4 x 8 bulletin board out of foam insulation.  See below….

If you would like to see a larger version that will show off some of the amazing artwork, click here.

But here’s the funny thing!  We still couldn’t fit all of it!  We still have a large USPS Flat Rate Box full of mail!  I guess that we’ll have to build another board on another wall!

So the reason for this post is not to show off all of our fan mail, but to say THANKS!

Honestly, whenever I am feeling exhausted, worn down, or not that motivated….I love reading some of these letters, as it brings some life back into my step!  We are truly blessed to have clientele who will go out of their way to put their wonderful pens to paper!

So if anyone is so inclined, you are more than welcome to contribute to our new wall of fan mail!  I promise I’ll get another one built soon so we can display all of it!

PO Box 138
Milan, OH  44846

Again – heartfelt thanks to all of our fans!

Brian at Edison

 

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Fan Feedback

Survey Results – Report Back and a Thank You!

Hi Pen Fans.

I have the results of the recent survey.  In all honesty, I had no idea how beneficial this would be for myself and my business.  There were many items that I learned from doing this.  This survey will greatly benefit me in bringing my customers what they like. 

BIG THANKS to all of you for participating!  I had tons of responses, and they were all taken seriously.  All of you obviously put some thought into this.  This is exactly what I needed to get a view of my business from outside my bubble.

I would like to address some items that came up, give some general updates, and outline some changes that will or have occurred as a result..

There will be 6 items to cover….
 

1.  IT SHOULD BE EASIER TO FIND CUSTOM MATERIALS ON THE WEBSITE.

The biggest item that I received feedback upon is that it’s not easy to find custom materials.  I have been hosting everything on FlickR, and some people find this difficult. 

I’m going to give some consideration as to whether I continue to use FlickR to host my photos.  In the meantime, I’ll give some strategies that I think some people are not aware of that make FlickR much easier to navigate.

     A.  I realize that there are lot of photos on FlickR.  When you go to my main Flickr page here, look in the upper-right hand side of the page.  You will see a search field that says "Search Edisonpenco’s Photostream"  by typing in "ebonite", you will see every pen in my photostream that is made of ebonite.  If you type in "green" you will see every pen that has green in the title.  If you type in "celluloid" you will see every pen that is made from celluloid.  You get the idea.  By using this search field, you can go to the FlickR site with any composition, color, or any restriction at all, and narrow things down to your particular tastes.

     B.  You do not need to sit on my website and wait on a slideshow to see my material choices.  Actually, leaving my site and going to FlickR is best.  You can visit this link to see all models of my pens.  From there, you will see thumbnails.  And then every photo has a description so that you can tell what the material is.

These tips will be copied to the website pages, as well. 

As stated, I will also consider other options for photo hosting.


2.  HIGHER END vs. LOWER END

The responses about continuing higher end pens, as well as offering lower end production pens were split evenly.  Some people were very negative about going with a lower end production model.  They felt that I should only go higher and higher.  Then some people were the exact opposite.

Here’s what will happen….

The high end line will continue with Ernest at Hakumin Urushi as Limited Editions, and also custom one-off’s.  There will also be some other high end offerings that will be announced later.  However, I will also begin to offer a production pen.  It will probably be made in only three materials, and will be less expensive.  No customization.  There will also be a better rollerball option that will be priced lower. 

The biggest concern that people had, however, is stretching myself too far…focus on one or the other, or something will suffer.  I will have no problem doing both, and also keeping the same customer service and product quality.  The production pens are easier to make, since it’s the same materials, and I can operate it like an assembly line.  It’s easier and faster to make 20 identical pens in production style than it is to make only 5 completely custom pens.  I’m not changing the quality of product in any way on the production pens.  It’s simply much faster to line up each operation and do them repeatedly.  Once the lathe is set up to make one type of finial, for example, I can make lots quickly.  With a custom pen, I need to do a completely different set up for each part, which consumes a lot of time.  Lastly, my 5 year-old is in pre-school three days a week now, so my wife has a lot more time to help me with administrative work, shipping, and other production needs.


3.  OFFER SOME SPECIALS

I’m taking this very seriously.  I will continue my holiday raffle of a free pen, but I will also consider holiday specials, and also summer specials.


4.  SMALLER PENS

A lot of people appreciate the Grande models of the Herald and Huron, but obviously this is going in the opposite direction of people who want smaller pens.  There is a smaller pen in the works.  It will use a #5 nib.  The exact time to market is yet to be determined.

5.  OVERLAYS

I had a lot of comments to have some overlay options.  I’m actually already at the prototype stage on a phenomenal overlay pen.  Keep you ear to the ground.  This should be out within a month, I hope.


6.  STOP SHIPPING PENS IN TUBES!

People that made these comments probably haven’t ordered a pen for a while.  About 6-9 months ago, I found some nice leatherette boxes for shipping pens.  Since then, I recently had some pretty phenomenal presentation boxes arrive, which you can see here…..

 

One comment based on the survery results….If you aren’t happy with your pen for whatever reason, PLEASE LET ME KNOW!  The finer qualities of fountain pens are very user-defined and individual.  It’s impossilble to manufacture a pen that will appeal to all.  If your nib isn’t what you expected, LET ME KNOW!  I’ll take care of it.

To conclude, I would like to again thank everyone for participating in the survey.  Everyone took it seriously, and this really helps me to make the right moves with Edison.  I really like to be in touch with my clients, and this really helped a lot. Maybe I’ll do one of these surveys annually to serve as an "Edison Check-Up".

Thanks

Brian at Edison

 


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Fan Feedback

I Could Use Your Help, Please…

Hi Pen Fans.

In an effort to bring the products and service that my clients want, I’ve created a very short survey.

Personally, I’m not always a fan of online surveys, so I have made this very short, to the point, and user-friendly. 

This survey should only take a couple of minutes.

If you could please fill this out, this will help immensely as I decide what directions my business will take as well what offerings to continue or discontinue.

Truly, this will help me to bring you better and better products, so please take a couple of minutes to help me out.

Click the link below to take the survey.

https://edisonpen.com/page.cfm/Survey

Many thanks.

Brian at Edison