For a long time now I’ve heard how the Exacompta Record Index Cards (buy via JetPens) were some of the better index cards you can find, so I finally took the plunge and grabbed some to give them a try. I had hoped to get the standard 3″ x 5″ version but they were out of stock so I went with the larger size that is labeled 4″ x 6″ on the JetPens website.
I say that they are “labeled as 4″ x 6″ on the JetPens website” because they are really about 1/16″ short on each side of really living up to those measurements. The 100mm x 150mm label on the box is definitely the more accurate representation of the measurements for these Exacompta Record Index Cards. You can also see the “5×5” marking there to indicate the size of each grid space on the cards. One of the great things about these cards is the box that they come in. Many index cards come wrapped in cellophane and can get banged up a little if you don’t have somewhere to keep them. This box slides open nicely though and gives your Exacompta index cards a nice safe place to live when not in use.
The package of 100 Exacompta Record Index Cards comes divided into 4 sets of 25 different colored cards that are wrapped up in cellophane packages. The colors are all pastels and are yellow, blue, pink, and green. Each of the 205gsm weighted cards has the same color rulings on them which is said to be a pale purple, but to my eyes they come off as more of a cloudy grey color. Either way, the color is nice and muted and does not distract from your writing when using these index cards.
I got mixed results when writing on these with a few different inks. The green card (3rd from the left for our color blind friends) has Noodler’s Black Swan in Australian Roses ink put down on it using a Levenger True Writer Broad Nib. Now thats pretty much asking for a long dry time, but it was significantly longer than I expected. I actually wrote that card up, wrote the rest of the cards, took the photos, AND…and here is the crazy part, I rode my bike for 36 minutes then showered and came back to a ink that was still wet on these cards. The blue Exacompta Record Index Card (first on the left) was written with Pelikan Edelstein Aventurine Ink with an XXF Lamy Studio nib to go to the other extreme with a well behaved ink and very narrow nib for a hopefully quicker dry time. The results were still surprising with this one as the ink took a few minutes to dry. The good news about the fountain pen usage on these was that there was no feathering or other poor behavior though. The other two remaining cards pink (second from the left) and yellow (last on the right) were written with a Parker Quink gel ink medium point and a Pilot Precise V5, each of these dried in a very reasonable time of a few seconds.
I definitely like these despite their apparent dry time issues with the fountain pen inks that I used. My ideal use for them right now is a bit random, but they definitely solve a problem I’ve been having. I typically used a Field Notes or other similar journal to log my bike rides (indoors only because its damn cold out there) and not to be gross, but I’m usually pretty sweaty when I jump off the bike and write down the time, distance, and average speed of each ride. Because of the thinner nature of the paper in those journals, it tends to warp and curl a bit from the sweat, these index cards clearly wont do that because of their thicker size, not to mention the larger format and grid layout making it easier for jotting down all of that information. Anyway, thats going to be my random use for these guys for now, but obviously there are a ton of other uses and you should definitely check out these Exacompta Record Index cards over at JetPens for some nice quality index cards, just be careful if you want to use fountain pens with them.