Traveler Notebooks (Rough Review)

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I picked up a couple of refills to try out… while I’ve not actually written in them yet (don’t judge), I have finally opened them, and given at least a cursory inspection. Here, then, are my initial thoughts on the two I’m most likely to use…

Refill 01: Lined (Regular) 64 pages

  • About 30-31 lines per page, depending on implementation (could squeeze to 32 lines, using the hint of extra white-space at the bottom of the page, depending on penmanship).Spacing seems about comparable to a college-ruled, but having just looked at them, I’ve not been able to confirm.
  • It feels like it’s about the same as regular printer paper – thicker than a regular notepad or spiral-bound notebook paper. Hopefully that means a better bleed control from a fountain pen…

Refill 13: Unlined “Thin” (Lightweight) – 128 pages

  • Very thin pages – it’s suggested that the paper is comparable to Tomoe (Tomoegawa) River Paper, which is supposed to be very good with fountain pen inks (read: minimal to non-existant bleed-through).
  • Being unlined, unless your penmanship is very good (mine is not), or plans include a lot of free-style rendering, you may want to consider some kind of lined template to keep you honest.
  • MOAR pages! Yes, this is the ONLY refill available from the company with more than 64 pages. Even with the (subjective) need for a line stencil, still a viable option just for that.

I’m still on the fence, to be honest. What drew me to these is their flexibility (read: thin/able to carry several at one time). The idea would be to keep separate notebooks for project development – a different one for each project – then use a thicker volume for the actual drafting. Right now, with 2-3 projects in various stages of development, I’m prone to carry around the equivalent of a mid-size hardcover (or two) – just for notes, that’s not even considering once I am actually drafting.

I could do the same thing with a cheaper spiral-bound, but there is something to be said for the clean lines (and lack of a deformed metal spiral) of these notebooks, and the flexibility of the system.

More on these once I start filling them with ink…

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