Friday, November 6, 2009

Mnemosyne Notepads

On a recent trip to Kinokuniya I was browsing through the Mnemosyne ringed journals when I spotted some familiar-looking stapled notepads in the back of some Campus notebooks. But they weren't black Rhodias at all, but Mnemosynes. Specifically, the Maruman Mnemosyne Project Notepads #187 size A5 (similar to a Rhodia 16) and #188 size A4 (similar to a Rhodia 18). JetPens carries the 188, but I have to think that price of $25.50 is off, as it is the same price as the Project Holder and Notepad. At Kinokuniya these are selling for a lot more than their Rhodia counterparts (the smaller Mnemosyne 187 cost over $10 with tax, while the Rhodia 16 is about $6 total) so I was curious to see how they compared.

The Rhodia and Mnemosyne are stapled at the top and are 5mm squared. When you turn the cover over, both have the brand name on the inside so it is visible at the top of the pad. The Rhodia has 80 pages, the Mnemosyne has 70 pages, and both are perforated for easy removal. But its the way the paper handles ink that's important: it's not very good with fountain pens. I can't find anything on the paper's gsm, but it's definitely in the "feels smooth and silky" category and very similar to my Rhodia pads. But then I tried out my Pelikan 205 Demonstator fine point on the smaller 187, using Noodler's Manhattan Blue ink. There was definite bleed through on the paper and a very heavy shadow. Granted the Pelikan 205's fine point is wider than other fine points, so I then tried a second test with my Namiki fine point and Iroshizuku ink in Syo-Ro. This time, there was no bleed through, and the shadow was less although still distinct. So I'd say that any fountain pen with a nib approaching medium would have ink problems with this paper. Sharpies bled through the paper, while gel ink and rollerballs left heavy shadows but no ink on the other side.