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How to Store Fountain Pens?

how to store fountain pens

If you just started to collect fountain pens, the first thing that you need to know is that they require more maintenance compared to regular ballpoint pens that have low to no maintenance at all. This article will teach you how to store fountain pens correctly so they can last much longer and work as intended.

It will tell you the basics of fountain pen storage – both for when you are carrying it around and for long-term storage. You will discover the important things about fountain pens, including where and how you should be storing them.

Step-by-Step Guide

Storing the Fountain Pen on Your Desk

storing the fountain pen on your desk

If you often use your fountain pen for note-taking, journaling, or signing documents, then it is fine to store it on your desk without thorough cleaning every time. Here is how to store fountain pens when not in use.

What to prepare:

  • A pen stand
  • Paper towels

Detailed steps:

Step 1 – Clean the nib

Clean the nib of your fountain pen before you put it aside for the day. This will keep the excess ink from drying and caking over the nib, which might cause clogs. For daily use, you just have to wipe the nib with a paper towel until most of the excess ink on the writing tip is gone.

Step 2 – Replace the cap

The most important thing you should do before setting your pen on your desk is to replace the pen cap. This will greatly slow down the drying process of the ink, thereby making it easier for the pen to get working the next time you use it.

If your fountain pen did not come with a pen cap or if you misplaced it, I highly suggest that you buy an aftermarket cap for it.

Step 3 – Place the fountain pen on its designated stand

Ideally, you should store your pen horizontally because this will prevent the ink reservoir from drying completely. In addition, it will make it easier for the pen to get going again the next time you use it.

One can argue that storing the pen with the nib pointing down will have the same effect, and maybe even better. However, the problem with having the nib pointing down is that gravity will pull the ink down and out of the nib. This will result in a huge mess on your desk.

On the other hand, storing the pen with the nib pointing up is not good as well as this will force the ink out of the reservoir and cause it to dry.

Long-term Storage

long term storage

If you will not be using your fountain pen in the foreseeable future, it is best to clean it properly before placing it in your drawer or its case.

What to prepare:

  • Lukewarm water and some mild detergent
  • Paper towels
  • A fountain pen case

Step 1 – Clean the pen thoroughly

You first need to disassemble the pen completely, or at the very least, take apart the pen body and cap, then remove the ink tank.

Place the disassembled parts in a large bowl of lukewarm water with a couple of drops of liquid detergent. Swirl the parts around to remove as much of the ink as you can.

Take the writing assembly and place it with the nib pointing down under running lukewarm water. This will push out the ink still stored inside the pen mechanism. When the water coming out of the nib is already clear, you can stop.

Step 2 – Let the parts dry thoroughly

Shake off the excess water from the pen parts, and then place them on a flat surface lined with a couple of sheets of paper towels. You can use cotton swabs to dry the inside parts of the pen. Place the parts back on top of the paper towels and allow them to dry thoroughly.

Step 3 – Store the pen properly

Once the parts are completely dry, reassemble them and store the pen in a place that is cool and dry. Ideally, the storage location should be somewhere that is not exposed to direct sunlight, like your desk drawer.

You should also invest in a good pencil case or pouch for your fountain pen. This will prevent your fountain pen from getting scratched and dinged by the other things that you have in your drawer.

Environmental Factors to Consider When Storing Pens

environmental factors to consider when storing pens


Do your best to keep your fountain pens from exposure to extreme temperatures. When the fountain pen is exposed to sunlight and allowed to heat up, the ink inside the pen will dry out much quicker.

On the other hand, exposure to extreme cold is not good as well, especially when you are using water-based inks. If the ink inside the pen freezes, it will expand and cause the internal components to crack or deform.


Can you travel by plane while carrying your fountain pen? If it is empty, then it should be fine. However, if the pen is full of ink, the higher air pressure at high altitudes might push the ink out of the feeder. This means that if you put your fountain pen in your carry-on baggage, the contents might be covered in ink.


Knowing how to store fountain pens correctly is one of the most basic things that a beginner pen collector should know. Remember that fountain pens are not cheap, so you should do your best to make them last as much as possible.

Since you have reached the end of this article, you already know how to store your pen for the short and long term. You also learned the environmental factors that will affect the performance of your pens. With these basic bits of knowledge, you can be sure that your pens can last for many years.