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Thread: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

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    Senior Member SIR's Avatar
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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    +1 for a cursive italic from Mike Masuyama at F-C; will not disappoint!

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Cheers to italics and stubs! They're basically all I buy lol, but then again I do calligraphy so that sorta makes sense. RE: Pelikan's stock steel "italic" nib, it's generally reputed to be more of a stub, with a little but not tons of line variation. Still probably a worthy investment as they're getting harder to find.

    For narrower nibs, I second someone's earlier mention of Nemosine .6 and .8mm stubs--they're a great add to anything that takes a #6 nib. I'd also give a look at Osmiroid calligraphy pens on ebay; they're generally cheap and come with a variety of stubs, obliques, italics, and the like.

    Happy hunting!

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    My favorite stub nib is on my Montblanc 344G:

    - Will
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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Kirk Spear over at penrealm.com does excellent nib work and grinds. He did a great job on my Montblanc 149. I got a smooth cursive italic in medium.


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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by penwash View Post
    My favorite stub nib is on my Montblanc 344G:

    Great, that's a nib I like! :-)
    .................................................. .................................................. .

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    I have Bock, Jowo, Pilot, Nemosine, Stipula, Kaweco, TWSBI and Schmidt branded stubs. They range in sizes from .8mm to 1.1mm. 1.1mm is about the largest I can use comfortably. I think Stipula, TWSBI and Kaweco are rebranded Jowo or Bock nibs but I don't remember. The Schmidt was ground by pen maker of my Parsons Essential Italix. It's more of a crisp italic. I like them so much I decided to learn how to grind them myself. I was told that one of the pens I ground was tested by Pendleton Brown and he said it came out like his first attempts at nib grinding. I prefer to think it was a compliment. 😜

    I like the way Lamy does their 1.1 but the flow tends to be a bit dry. Bock has a bit wetter flow and I tend to use those the most. Flow can be adjusted but out of the box wetness of the Bock nibs is to my liking.
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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    My Lamy Safari 1.1 nib is one of the cheapest yet best writing nibs that I own. If you can get to a pen show and have someone grind a nib whilst you are there, I suspect that will give you a nib with the best writing experience.

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    I had a 1980s OMAS with a medium nib. I really liked the pen, but the nib was a little boring. When it needed repairs, Mottishaw was still doing OMAS repairs so i sent it in and had them stub it. Usually i prefer a broader stub, but this one's gives just enough variation to keep me interested. It feels great, too. Just a super job.

    I would recommend having a medium nib stubbed, if not by Mottishaw, then by someone else

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by da vinci View Post
    My Lamy Safari 1.1 nib is one of the cheapest yet best writing nibs that I own. If you can get to a pen show and have someone grind a nib whilst you are there, I suspect that will give you a nib with the best writing experience.
    I have each of the Lamy stub nibs, and do like the way the 1.1 writes and feels. A couple issues though... One, it's a bit wide for my taste, at least for everyday writing in cursive. Two, I don't like the grip section of any of the main Lamy pens it's intended for -- the Safari, Nexx, Al-Star. I wouldn't mind it on a CP1, but the CP1 is SO slender -- too much so for my taste. I'd put the nib on an Aion, but I don't know how well that would work -- my understanding is that the feed is somewhat different, to accommodate the Z53, as opposed to Z50 nib... I DO like the feel of the Aion (it's similar to my 2000), though, so if I knew it would work I'd probably get one for that purpose.

    What I DO find the 1.1 useful for is my hobby of "conlanging" (i.e., making-up "constructed languages"). It's great for producing characters that look vaguely elvish or fantasy-ish :-)

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by KrazyIvan View Post
    I have Bock, Jowo, Pilot, Nemosine, Stipula, Kaweco, TWSBI and Schmidt branded stubs. They range in sizes from .8mm to 1.1mm. 1.1mm is about the largest I can use comfortably. I think Stipula, TWSBI and Kaweco are rebranded Jowo or Bock nibs but I don't remember. The Schmidt was ground by pen maker of my Parsons Essential Italix. It's more of a crisp italic. I like them so much I decided to learn how to grind them myself. I was told that one of the pens I ground was tested by Pendleton Brown and he said it came out like his first attempts at nib grinding. I prefer to think it was a compliment. 😜

    I like the way Lamy does their 1.1 but the flow tends to be a bit dry. Bock has a bit wetter flow and I tend to use those the most. Flow can be adjusted but out of the box wetness of the Bock nibs is to my liking.
    I had one of the TWSBI 1.1 stubs, and liked it, except that I found it to not give me the line variation that I wanted. It's a nice pen and a nice-writing nib, though, to be sure -- just not for me.

    I now have 0.6 and 0.8 Nemosine nibs, but have only thus far tried the 0.6. And I have to say that -- at least mounted on their own "Fission" pen, I don't like it because it's simply way too wet. The pen, too, is so heavy as to be uncomfortable to use. The nib itself, however, seems perhaps promising. I think that with a little modification, and mounting it on a different #6 nib unit, it might work pretty well. I will try it out on a Franklin-Christoph and see what happens...

    The other one I'm interested in is the 1.0 nib from Fountain Pen Revolution. I got an FPR pen as a gift, and was a bit surprised at how much I have liked it. It writes as well as my Pilot 92, with an EF nib. Not a bad looking pen, either, for the money.

    Speaking of Franklin-Christoph, I purchased one of their modded nibs that they call an "SIG" (Stub Italic Gradient). It is a nice nib -- amazingly smooth -- but I have to be honest and say that I am not sure what to make of it. Maybe it's just me, and not knowing quite how to use it, appropriately. Perhaps my cursive style just doesn't suit it... But there is very little line variation, and the edges of the line are quite ragged, at least by my accounting. In fact, I was going to do a separate post about it, to ask after anyone else's experience with that nib.

    As it is turning-out, there seem to be more options available than I'd thought, and -- to be honest -- I'm a bit confused and overwhelmed. I'm still grappling, a bit, with understanding the differences in nib styles: stub, calligraphy, italic, cursive-italic, oblique, etc., etc. I think I am beginning to have a handle on it, and from what I am gathering, my tastes veer more toward a truer calligraphy/italic type nib. For the most part, it's the distinct line variation and clean look to the line that I'm after. I feel it's those aspects which make my cursive writing look better and more interesting. So that's what I will pursue...

    To date, the pen which still holds-up as the best overall experience is my humble little Pilot Prera with CM (Cursive-Medium) nib. It puts-down the line which most closely matches what I want. The only reason I'm still on the hunt for the right pen/nib is that the Prera's CM nib feels quite scritchy-scratchy, and it's such a small (and kinda ugly) pen.

    My understanding is that if you want a true italic style nib, with lots of line variation, and really clean line quality, you are going to have to put-up with a bit of scratchiness and resistant feedback. I'm willing to do so, but still want to be on the lookout for the perfect sweetspot :-)

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    I had a 1980s OMAS with a medium nib. I really liked the pen, but the nib was a little boring. When it needed repairs, Mottishaw was still doing OMAS repairs so i sent it in and had them stub it. Usually i prefer a broader stub, but this one's gives just enough variation to keep me interested. It feels great, too. Just a super job.

    I would recommend having a medium nib stubbed, if not by Mottishaw, then by someone else
    I do think that, ultimately, the customization route is the way to go, for me. I'm a little gunshy, though, because of the two higher-end, custom nibs I've gotten, neither has really panned-out to be what I wanted. In retrospect, I think that I've just asked for the wrong things. So I'm willing to try again. I really don't think that it's a pure stub that I want, though. I think that most stubs are too rounded for me, and mostly just end-up putting-down a line that's more like a double-broad nib. The experience I am looking for is closer to a classic italic, I think.

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by SIR View Post
    +1 for a cursive italic from Mike Masuyama at F-C; will not disappoint!
    Mike Masuyama is a genius. He repaired a badly bent 21K nib on my Sailor 1911, and tuned it, and when I got it back it wrote a million times better than it had when it was new!
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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Pendleton’s are the best for a start. Always write well, but can be a little toothy on the down stroke.

    Masuyama is a real artisan. Factory perfect (visually). The CIs are not very forgiving to a new user. Better to start with one of his stubs.

    I like John Mottishaw’s grinds too. Pretty much have to buy a pen from him to get a decent turnaround.

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    You could do worse than a Lamy stub. They're cheap and fit on a variety of Lamy pens. Those and the old Sheaffer No Nonsense are my favorite cheapies. The Lamy 1.5mm on an Al-Star ia my everyday work pen.

    For more expensive pens, i've had great results from Mottishaw. I haven't used any other nib meisters for stubs, though, because i almost always go with a factory stub.

    One thing : i love stubs & most of the pens that i as actually use are stubs, but i can't stand Japanese stubs or music nibs. I find that they make me write more vertically than i prefer. As a result, they're very uncomfortable for me. (I usually write with a ~45 degree angle of attack.)

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    You could do worse than a Lamy stub. They're cheap and fit on a variety of Lamy pens. Those and the old Sheaffer No Nonsense are my favorite cheapies. The Lamy 1.5mm on an Al-Star ia my everyday work pen.

    For more expensive pens, i've had great results from Mottishaw. I haven't used any other nib meisters for stubs, though, because i almost always go with a factory stub.

    One thing : i love stubs & most of the pens that i as actually use are stubs, but i can't stand Japanese stubs or music nibs. I find that they make me write more vertically than i prefer. As a result, they're very uncomfortable for me. (I usually write with a ~45 degree angle of attack.)
    I do like the Lamy stub nibs. I have had a 1.1 and a 1.5 for a while, and used those on Al-Star pens. Recently I decided, however, that I really don't care for the Safari/Al-Star grip, and so I have an Aion forthcoming, to assume duty as carrier for my Lamy stub nibs.

    For my everyday cursive writing, I find even the 1.1 to be a bit wide. Thus I like my Pilot Prera, which has a very similar writing quality, but is a bit narrower. It's a stop-gap, though, until I can find the *perfect* nib. My hope is that will be one of the Franklin-Christoph units I have on the way, as well.

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by penwash View Post
    My favorite stub nib is on my Montblanc 344G:

    That is incredibly beautiful writing, Will!
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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    For some years I eatched for any italic or stub nibs. I found a few that were interesting. I think it's wise to investigate any you see or see advertised. You never know what you will find for a low price. Example: Montblanc 144 Bordeaux with medium italic for $10. It had a bad converter.

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by pajaro View Post
    For some years I eatched for any italic or stub nibs. I found a few that were interesting. I think it's wise to investigate any you see or see advertised. You never know what you will find for a low price. Example: Montblanc 144 Bordeaux with medium italic for $10. It had a bad converter.
    Amazing. You did better than me. I picked up a Waterman Commando with a #5 keyhole flex stub for $16 and I thought I was ahead.

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    Default Re: Italic / Stub Nibs -- Favorites & Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by michaeldoleman View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by KrazyIvan View Post
    I have Bock, Jowo, Pilot, Nemosine, Stipula, Kaweco, TWSBI and Schmidt branded stubs. They range in sizes from .8mm to 1.1mm. 1.1mm is about the largest I can use comfortably. I think Stipula, TWSBI and Kaweco are rebranded Jowo or Bock nibs but I don't remember. The Schmidt was ground by pen maker of my Parsons Essential Italix. It's more of a crisp italic. I like them so much I decided to learn how to grind them myself. I was told that one of the pens I ground was tested by Pendleton Brown and he said it came out like his first attempts at nib grinding. I prefer to think it was a compliment. 😜

    I like the way Lamy does their 1.1 but the flow tends to be a bit dry. Bock has a bit wetter flow and I tend to use those the most. Flow can be adjusted but out of the box wetness of the Bock nibs is to my liking.
    I had one of the TWSBI 1.1 stubs, and liked it, except that I found it to not give me the line variation that I wanted. It's a nice pen and a nice-writing nib, though, to be sure -- just not for me.

    I now have 0.6 and 0.8 Nemosine nibs, but have only thus far tried the 0.6. And I have to say that -- at least mounted on their own "Fission" pen, I don't like it because it's simply way too wet. The pen, too, is so heavy as to be uncomfortable to use. The nib itself, however, seems perhaps promising. I think that with a little modification, and mounting it on a different #6 nib unit, it might work pretty well. I will try it out on a Franklin-Christoph and see what happens...

    The other one I'm interested in is the 1.0 nib from Fountain Pen Revolution. I got an FPR pen as a gift, and was a bit surprised at how much I have liked it. It writes as well as my Pilot 92, with an EF nib. Not a bad looking pen, either, for the money.

    Speaking of Franklin-Christoph, I purchased one of their modded nibs that they call an "SIG" (Stub Italic Gradient). It is a nice nib -- amazingly smooth -- but I have to be honest and say that I am not sure what to make of it. Maybe it's just me, and not knowing quite how to use it, appropriately. Perhaps my cursive style just doesn't suit it... But there is very little line variation, and the edges of the line are quite ragged, at least by my accounting. In fact, I was going to do a separate post about it, to ask after anyone else's experience with that nib.

    As it is turning-out, there seem to be more options available than I'd thought, and -- to be honest -- I'm a bit confused and overwhelmed. I'm still grappling, a bit, with understanding the differences in nib styles: stub, calligraphy, italic, cursive-italic, oblique, etc., etc. I think I am beginning to have a handle on it, and from what I am gathering, my tastes veer more toward a truer calligraphy/italic type nib. For the most part, it's the distinct line variation and clean look to the line that I'm after. I feel it's those aspects which make my cursive writing look better and more interesting. So that's what I will pursue...

    To date, the pen which still holds-up as the best overall experience is my humble little Pilot Prera with CM (Cursive-Medium) nib. It puts-down the line which most closely matches what I want. The only reason I'm still on the hunt for the right pen/nib is that the Prera's CM nib feels quite scritchy-scratchy, and it's such a small (and kinda ugly) pen.

    My understanding is that if you want a true italic style nib, with lots of line variation, and really clean line quality, you are going to have to put-up with a bit of scratchiness and resistant feedback. I'm willing to do so, but still want to be on the lookout for the perfect sweetspot :-)
    I am just guessing but I feel like maybe you tend to turn the nib while writing. I do it and it results in less line variation from some pens. In other pens I actually like the results. It may be that practice is needed in holding a pen with these types of nibs. The easiest to use are going to be those that have smooth corners so you don't grab the paper. Once I learned to angle the pen for maximum line variation, I moved to crisper italics. I still mess up and rip the [paper once in a while but it does not happen as often as it used to.
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