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View Full Version : What Does One Do with a Pelikan M800 IB Stock Nib and What about M800 14K Nibs?



Susan3141
May 3rd, 2013, 02:22 PM
This probably seems a silly question. One writes with it, of course. But to what purpose?

I purchased a beautiful 1990s M800 blue from Rick Propas (my hero), and got it with the new IB stock nib thinking that I would love the broad strokes and bold lines. But, I find it's like writing with a big, fat Sharpie. If I write really large, then the pen writes quite beautifully. I have it inked with Shin-Kai and the shade variation is nice. But I don't normally write really large, unless I'm addressing envelopes. But I don't want to use my Blue M800 just to address envelopes.

So, can you use an IB for everyday handwriting? I use my pens mainly for journaling and grading. Although I might find great satisfaction writing large blue Fs on certain students' papers, I can't really see myself using this nib for grading. And I journal in a Rhodia dot Webbie, and the lines aren't large.

I've already contacted Rick about exchanging the nib for a fine or extra fine, but that seems so extraordinarily boring (if not utilitarian). I guess I wondered what those of you who use Bold nibs do with them. Do you use them only for signatures? Addressing envelopes? Or, if you use them for everyday writing, how do you make it not look like a first grader's penmanship?

Also, while I'm asking questions, are the 14K Pelikan M800 nibs really that much better than the 18K ones? I know the 14K ones are supposed to be "better" but I'm not exactly sure how. Are they springier? Or is it just that they can be modified for more flex? Are they worth paying an extra $150 for?

Thanks all for letting me ask my silly questions.

Susan

Russ
May 3rd, 2013, 03:24 PM
Susan, please don't make a rapid decision to replace the IB. Years ago I bought a Milord M that seemed far too wide. I held on, and as my handwriting developed and I began to appreciate wider nibs, that pen become an absolute favorite. I also had an M1000 with an XF and an F, and I wasn't satisfied. These are noble pens, and just seem best with a corresponding nib. Eventually I gained a B nib and ground it to an IB, and now I feel like Goldilocks: it is just right.

Drier inks help, but they don't seem to be your primary area of need.

Regarding paper, I keep three sources, in order of quality: printer, personal writing, and journal. Good printer paper is hard to find for wet nibs. Personal paper needs to allow duplex, and I can find it. When Exacompta discontinued unlined journals, I chose Strathmore cotton paper and made my own at far less than half price. So I have generally solved the paper problem.

Since the M1000 is generously wet, I learned to lean it back (posted) and write with my shoulder. This reduced pressure on the nib as well as flexing; now the feed delivers a more consistent flow, and the IB allows my writing to appear nicer. I don't use the IB for fast work; it is reserved for journal entries and letter-writing where I can slow down and enjoy the process of thought and writing. Sometimes I write 25 pages in a study prior to public speaking; here the IB is at home.

I hope you find a satisfying way to enjoy your IB. Please don't give up on it too soon.

peterpen53
May 3rd, 2013, 03:28 PM
This probably seems a silly question. One writes with it, of course. But to what purpose?

I purchased a beautiful 1990s M800 blue from Rick Propas (my hero), and got it with the new IB stock nib thinking that I would love the broad strokes and bold lines. But, I find it's like writing with a big, fat Sharpie. If I write really large, then the pen writes quite beautifully. I have it inked with Shin-Kai and the shade variation is nice. But I don't normally write really large, unless I'm addressing envelopes. But I don't want to use my Blue M800 just to address envelopes.

So, can you use an IB for everyday handwriting? I use my pens mainly for journaling and grading. Although I might find great satisfaction writing large blue Fs on certain students' papers, I can't really see myself using this nib for grading. And I journal in a Rhodia dot Webbie, and the lines aren't large.

I've already contacted Rick about exchanging the nib for a fine or extra fine, but that seems so extraordinarily boring (if not utilitarian). I guess I wondered what those of you who use Bold nibs do with them. Do you use them only for signatures? Addressing envelopes? Or, if you use them for everyday writing, how do you make it not look like a first grader's penmanship?

Also, while I'm asking questions, are the 14K Pelikan M800 nibs really that much better than the 18K ones? I know the 14K ones are supposed to be "better" but I'm not exactly sure how. Are they springier? Or is it just that they can be modified for more flex? Are they worth paying an extra $150 for?

Thanks all for letting me ask my silly questions.

Susan

My handwriting is fairly large and italic-inspired. I am so pleased with my IB nib. I use a lined Webbie as my pen-and-ink log and the entry for my M805 IB fits perfectly and certainly does not look like it's done by a first grader (I think. Or one that has had an italic course in kindergarten perhaps? See picture below). In a dotted one I might need to skip lines.

2350

I'm afraid I can't really help you with the 14K's. I only have them in the 600-size and only in B (sorry!). They seem to be the tiniest bit softer, but the 600 nib is quite different from the 800-size anyway.

HTH

Cheers,
Peter

Susan3141
May 3rd, 2013, 04:28 PM
Here are two really sad examples of my handwriting with the IB nib inked with Shin-kai. The first is in my Rhodia notebook. It's simply awful:

2351

The big blob in the middle is where I tried to flood the feed a little since the nib was skipping.

And here is my Clairfontaine notebook. It's better, but still not great, and I don't use my Clairfontaine notebook for anything but practice. The pen is skipping a bit too.

2352

See what I mean?

Laura N
May 3rd, 2013, 09:48 PM
I don't think your hand-writing looks bad. And that nib really shows off the ink nicely. But it does take some time to adjust to a broader nib. If it's like most of my Pelikans, it's probably a wet nib, too. It's possible a drier ink would help. Pelikan Blue Black or Montblanc Midnight Blue are both on the dry side and close to the color you've shown there, or Pelikan Royal Blue.

But if you try it for a few days and don't like it, maybe swapping out the nib would be better. Such a special pen should have a special nib, so you can use it happily.

I have no idea about the 14k nibs for the M800; unfortunately the M800 is too big and heavy for me. I do kind of discount everything I read on the internet by half, though. :) I bet Rick would be a good person to ask for an honest opinion.

peterpen53
May 4th, 2013, 02:02 AM
As Laura N more or less implies, I think it depends a lot on your preferences and what you're used to. I like and prefer broader nibs and my handwriting has grown a bit larger as a consequence. I see nothing wrong with your writing, certainly not in the Clairfontaine and in the Rhodia it looks much better when you skip a line as suggested I might need to do myself.
One thing though: perhaps you need to give some attention to the angle of the nib vs. the writing line. Around 45 degrees would be ideal. From the looks of the line variation I get the impression you might be more than a bit off and the fact that the nib skips reinforces that impression. My IB never skips.

Again, HTH.

Susan3141
May 4th, 2013, 06:25 AM
As Laura N more or less implies, I think it depends a lot on your preferences and what you're used to. I like and prefer broader nibs and my handwriting has grown a bit larger as a consequence. I see nothing wrong with your writing, certainly not in the Clairfontaine and in the Rhodia it looks much better when you skip a line as suggested I might need to do myself.
One thing though: perhaps you need to give some attention to the angle of the nib vs. the writing line. Around 45 degrees would be ideal. From the looks of the line variation I get the impression you might be more than a bit off and the fact that the nib skips reinforces that impression. My IB never skips.

Again, HTH.

That's one of the strange things—the writing angle. If I try to write at around 45 degrees, no ink comes out. I'm having to use a super high angle to get any ink to flow. I'll try doing a good soapy wash of the nib. Maybe there's some silicone grease or something in it.

And you and Laura are awfully kind about my writing. It's really bad! I can make it look good with smaller italics. But I won't give up yet. I'll try flushing the nib and give it another try.

Russ
May 4th, 2013, 08:31 AM
That's one of the strange things—the writing angle. If I try to write at around 45 degrees, no ink comes out. I'm having to use a super high angle to get any ink to flow.

This is the problem. You are working too hard to compensate for a flow defect. A loupe is needed to examine the contact surface of the nib. The nib may also need flossing to restore flow. You should be able to write very easily at 45 degrees.

JustDaveyB
May 4th, 2013, 07:31 PM
I am not a great fan of my IB nib as it not "italic" enough for me. When it is in rotation I mainly use it to mark up documents - makes for a good highlighter.

hari317
May 5th, 2013, 04:43 AM
Also, while I'm asking questions, are the 14K Pelikan M800 nibs really that much better than the 18K ones? I know the 14K ones are supposed to be "better" but I'm not exactly sure how. Are they springier? Or is it just that they can be modified for more flex? Are they worth paying an extra $150 for?


This. I have a few 14k ones and they are stiffer than the 18K ones. best M800 nibs IMO are the pre 97 ones with the E|N mark

nafi
May 12th, 2013, 04:45 PM
Hi Susan! I got my first M800 with a BB nib, thinking that I should go for something different than my usual range of EF-Ms, and 0.8-1.1 CIs for this one. The nib was perfect right out of the box, wrote a wet line with some lovely line variation (it is a stubbish nib), and made me feel it was something special right away. But it was a huge nib, and I simply had no use for it! I tried to use it for a couple of days, and had to face a tough decision: Either I would keep the lovely nib, and hardly use the pen, or I would part with it and have a wonderfull pen I could use every day. I went for the swap and never looked back. The only thing that matters is that you enjoy your pen, and yours is the only oppinion that counts in that matter. Furthermore, Pelikan nibs come in a nib-unit assembly, which means that you would get a new feed with the new nib, and this would most probably solve your flow issues as well.

Nomdeplume
May 12th, 2013, 05:05 PM
If not actually doing calligraphy, I use fine nibs...but to make more interesting try a fine stub or italic.

cnjackson
May 20th, 2013, 01:54 PM
This probably seems a silly question. One writes with it, of course. But to what purpose?

I purchased a beautiful 1990s M800 blue from Rick Propas (my hero), and got it with the new IB stock nib thinking that I would love the broad strokes and bold lines. But, I find it's like writing with a big, fat Sharpie. If I write really large, then the pen writes quite beautifully. I have it inked with Shin-Kai and the shade variation is nice. But I don't normally write really large, unless I'm addressing envelopes. But I don't want to use my Blue M800 just to address envelopes.

So, can you use an IB for everyday handwriting? I use my pens mainly for journaling and grading. Although I might find great satisfaction writing large blue Fs on certain students' papers, I can't really see myself using this nib for grading. And I journal in a Rhodia dot Webbie, and the lines aren't large.

I've already contacted Rick about exchanging the nib for a fine or extra fine, but that seems so extraordinarily boring (if not utilitarian). I guess I wondered what those of you who use Bold nibs do with them. Do you use them only for signatures? Addressing envelopes? Or, if you use them for everyday writing, how do you make it not look like a first grader's penmanship?

Also, while I'm asking questions, are the 14K Pelikan M800 nibs really that much better than the 18K ones? I know the 14K ones are supposed to be "better" but I'm not exactly sure how. Are they springier? Or is it just that they can be modified for more flex? Are they worth paying an extra $150 for?

Thanks all for letting me ask my silly questions.

Susan

My handwriting is fairly large and italic-inspired. I am so pleased with my IB nib. I use a lined Webbie as my pen-and-ink log and the entry for my M805 IB fits perfectly and certainly does not look like it's done by a first grader (I think. Or one that has had an italic course in kindergarten perhaps? See picture below). In a dotted one I might need to skip lines.

2350

I'm afraid I can't really help you with the 14K's. I only have them in the 600-size and only in B (sorry!). They seem to be the tiniest bit softer, but the 600 nib is quite different from the 800-size anyway.

HTH

Cheers,
Peter

Hi Peter, thanks for your wonderful writing sample. Could you indicate how much space there is between the lines in your notebook? Is it 5 mm? or 7 mm? or something else?

I am considering an m800 IB, and am trying to get a sense of whether that nib will suit my writing. Otherwise, I might go with the BB or 3B.

Thanks!

Chris

cnjackson
May 20th, 2013, 02:00 PM
Here are two really sad examples of my handwriting with the IB nib inked with Shin-kai. The first is in my Rhodia notebook. It's simply awful:

2351

The big blob in the middle is where I tried to flood the feed a little since the nib was skipping.

And here is my Clairfontaine notebook. It's better, but still not great, and I don't use my Clairfontaine notebook for anything but practice. The pen is skipping a bit too.

2352

See what I mean?

I agree with Laura above--your handwriting looks nice--especially once you switch over to doublespacing.

As I note in my other reply on this thread, I am considering an 800 with IB. Now that you've had your pen for a while, how do you like it? I would love to see some new writing samples.

I can't decide of the IB will be too broad for me: I'm also considering the BB and 3B.

Chris

tandaina
May 20th, 2013, 02:44 PM
I think your handwriting looks lovely! I have a 40s Pelikan 101 IB nib, wonder how it compares on size, seems decidedly smaller than this.

peterpen53
May 20th, 2013, 04:22 PM
Hi Peter, thanks for your wonderful writing sample. Could you indicate how much space there is between the lines in your notebook? Is it 5 mm? or 7 mm? or something else?

I am considering an m800 IB, and am trying to get a sense of whether that nib will suit my writing. Otherwise, I might go with the BB or 3B.

Thanks!

Chris

Hi Chris,
As I said it's a Rhodia Webbie, line spacing is 7 mm. If you want line variation (which I gather from your thread on FPN), this will give you plenty, if the size of your handwriting can manage it. And by the way, the line on my 600-size BB isn't that much smaller.
A word of caution on the BB/3B: if you decide to order one of these, be sure to make it clear what you want from the nib. The nibs in that width that Pelikan is currently delivering appear to be a big round blob, and that won't give any line variation at all. Unless you'll have it customized of course.


I think your handwriting looks lovely! I have a 40s Pelikan 101 IB nib, wonder how it compares on size, seems decidedly smaller than this.

Usually the nibs from that era run narrower than the current ones. I have an OB from the early 50's, but I would probably call that an OM now.

cnjackson
May 20th, 2013, 05:19 PM
Hi Chris,
As I said it's a Rhodia Webbie, line spacing is 7 mm. If you want line variation (which I gather from your thread on FPN), this will give you plenty, if the size of your handwriting can manage it. And by the way, the line on my 600-size BB isn't that much smaller.
A word of caution on the BB/3B: if you decide to order one of these, be sure to make it clear what you want from the nib. The nibs in that width that Pelikan is currently delivering appear to be a big round blob, and that won't give any line variation at all. Unless you'll have it customized of course.


Hi Peterpen--Thank you for your reply! (Yes, I've been inquiring about this over on FPN; I've only just discovered the FPG Forum.)

I didn't realize the webbie is 7mm: your writing looks really nice with the IB in that space.

I'm starting to think that the IB just might be too broad for me.

But it's interesting what you say about your M600 BB. If it's not too much trouble, I'd be very glad to see a sample of that nob, too. Should I infer that this nib does not have much line variation at all?

I had heard that more recent Pelikan nibs are blobbish. But some people who have the BBs or 3Bs indicate there is at least some variation. I'd prefer not to get the nib customized (for reasons of cost), but I suppose it may be necessary.

Argh! I'm torn--and probably there's no way to resolve this until I can try examples of each!

Thanks again!

Chris

Murfie
May 20th, 2013, 06:35 PM
Anyone with a Pelikan M800 IB nib would be interested to watch John Mottishaw's video here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rFKAssYpwug&feature=youtu.be) ...

I would be concerned with the skipping if it doesn't stop.

peterpen53
May 21st, 2013, 04:00 PM
...
But it's interesting what you say about your M600 BB. If it's not too much trouble, I'd be very glad to see a sample of that nob, too. Should I infer that this nib does not have much line variation at all?
...


No, you should not. It just depends on whether you will get a really new one or one from a number of years back, as you will see from the picture. Which is why it is important to state what you expect from the nib when ordering.
This is a quick and rather dirty picture of the test page I wrote when I had just received the nibs. Staples Nice Day spiral pad, 70gsm, 8mm line spacing. No feathering or bleed through from any of these pens (just for the record: my vintage 100N medium with Sheaffer Jet Black bleeds through like crazy on the same paper). Please note that all nibs were dipped, so they may have come out a little more intense and wider than when properly filled. I think this applies in particular to the 3B. All were dipped in the same ink.
As you can see, the BB has almost as much line variation as the IB. It is essentially an edged nib and to my eyes it has barely as much tipping material as the IB. I feel very lucky to have gotten this one. The 3B, on the other hand, is clearly from current production.

2868

cnjackson
May 22nd, 2013, 10:56 AM
Hi again, Peterpen, and thank you for your post and sample!

The sample is incredibly helpful! It does seem that the modern 3B is pretty round. There is a touch of line variation, but not too much.

I'm struck by how the BB and the IB are very similar. My understanding had been that the BB is about a 1mm tip and the IB a 1.5mm.

Right now, I think that I am leaning towards the BB.


The other thing you said really struck me. I think you are saying this?: that when I order my pen, the shop may have different versions (newer and older) of the same nib size in stock, and that if I tell them I want a BB with as much line variation as possible, they may be able to accommodate me?

I hadn't realized this was a possibility. Are there some shops that it would be better to order from, with this in mind?

Thanks so much for your help as I wander through this maze!

Chris

I like mango pudding
May 22nd, 2013, 01:54 PM
@peterpen53:

I love your handwriting!!!!!! :applause:

I used to write like that but I found it takes alot of time. My last italic nib bit the dust and I haven't written like that in years. Now my writing is a bit sloppy and fast, but I intend to write like that again, now that I have a TWSBI mini 1.1 stub and an OB 146 on the way.

peterpen53
May 22nd, 2013, 04:53 PM
Hi again, Peterpen, and thank you for your post and sample!

The sample is incredibly helpful! It does seem that the modern 3B is pretty round. There is a touch of line variation, but not too much.

I'm struck by how the BB and the IB are very similar. My understanding had been that the BB is about a 1mm tip and the IB a 1.5mm.

Right now, I think that I am leaning towards the BB.


The other thing you said really struck me. I think you are saying this?: that when I order my pen, the shop may have different versions (newer and older) of the same nib size in stock, and that if I tell them I want a BB with as much line variation as possible, they may be able to accommodate me?

I hadn't realized this was a possibility. Are there some shops that it would be better to order from, with this in mind?

Thanks so much for your help as I wander through this maze!

Chris

Of course there's no guarantee, but you can always try. Shop around! The round BB/3B's have not been around that long, if you want to find an older one you should do it now. And Pelikan nibs can be exchanged in a minute so a seller should not have any problem with matching the pen and nib that you want.


@peterpen53:

I love your handwriting!!!!!! :applause:

I used to write like that but I found it takes alot of time. My last italic nib bit the dust and I haven't written like that in years. Now my writing is a bit sloppy and fast, but I intend to write like that again, now that I have a TWSBI mini 1.1 stub and an OB 146 on the way.

Thank you! And you can always write in that style with a round nib, you know. I've been known to do it with a rollerball. But the pens you're getting should help.
I would agree that true italics take some more attention to your grip and writing angle, but the nibs I'm using don't really slow me down.

I like mango pudding
May 22nd, 2013, 06:11 PM
Thank you! And you can always write in that style with a round nib, you know. I've been known to do it with a rollerball. But the pens you're getting should help.
I would agree that true italics take some more attention to your grip and writing angle, but the nibs I'm using don't really slow me down.

Yes, thank you. I have tried writing like that and do write like that sometimes but it does take much more time and never does come out the way I want it to with my rollerball, or even a fine tipped felt pen.
When I had my italic nib, the letters just flowed out naturally. I have to work at it with the rollerball or felt tip pen. I have to write fast in my job so taking the time to perfectly form my letters is not an option I have. When I do have time to write, it looks much better, but still not as good as yours.

alc3261
May 22nd, 2013, 07:32 PM
I've not tried the IB but seeing these writing samples I think I'd like to.
I've got EF, F and M Pelikan nibs.

cnjackson
May 23rd, 2013, 09:45 PM
Of course there's no guarantee, but you can always try. Shop around! The round BB/3B's have not been around that long, if you want to find an older one you should do it now. And Pelikan nibs can be exchanged in a minute so a seller should not have any problem with matching the pen and nib that you want.



Thanks again, Peterpen--I think I will start to explore a bit by getting in contact with some of the usual sellers.

Thanks for the help!

Chris

cnjackson
May 25th, 2013, 01:40 PM
OK--I had a brainstorm this morning: before I commit to a Pelikan IB nib (or one its large brethren), I will try out a Lamy and a TWSBI 1.5 stub--one of each--to put on my Safari and 540 I already have. This will give me a chance to see how I write with a somewhat large stub (I know it won't be the same as an M800, but it's a trial run...). And if I love it, then I'll seriously consider the IB!

Just placed an order with Goulet--and I'll let everyone know what happens!

C

Valek
May 31st, 2013, 01:22 PM
Hi everyone. New to the forums here.

I was lucky enough to find a current thread that is relevant to my current search.

I was thinking of purchasing a Pelikan M800 in IB but I'm worried it might be too broad and not especially easy to write with. I currently use a waterman Carene (my only fountain pen) in Fine. I wanted a pen with a wider line and more character but I am worried the 1.5mm IB that Niche pens offers (I'm in the UK and will not order from states as the prices are high and 20% import tax on top is ridiculous).

I would be happier with a 1.1mm Italic but unfortunately without getting a custom one done I don't think I can get a hold of one. The M800 is expensive enough as it is without having a regrind done.

I was hesitating between an IB 1.5mm or a standard B or BB depending how wide they are. Do you have any advice?

I like mango pudding
May 31st, 2013, 01:34 PM
I have an OB and a 1.1stubby and both nib widths appear to be about the same. Writing samples show it very similar. The 1.1 stubby has finer lines on the cross / upstroke than the OB, but other than that, it's pretty much the same.