Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24

Thread: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    23
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 15 Times in 9 Posts
    Rep Power
    0

    Default Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    In several videos of pen reviews and comparisons, the author talks about the size of pens and how the size should match your hand size. I believe one of these videos was rbebrown comparing Pelikans and Montblancs. He noted that his hand size was 8" and, I think, concluded that a Pelikan M1000 or MB 149 were the right size.

    How do you measure hand size? If I go from the tip of my middle finger to the base of my thumb, I get 7". That doesn't seem right. Unlike our President, I don't have small hands and 7" is a lot less than Brown's 8".
    Dan Kalish
    Fountain Pens: Pelikan Souveran M805, Waterman Expert II, Waterman Phileas, Stipula Splash, Sheaffer Sagaris, Sheaffer School

  2. #2
    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    4,903
    Thanks
    5,184
    Thanked 7,539 Times in 2,808 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    I figure he's over-compensating. Probably will buy a red sports car at some point...

    Seriously though, I'm sitting here thinking "that really is an odd question and I have no idea". Like you, I don't consider my hands small, quite the opposite. I did the same measure (tip of 2nd finger to base of thumb) and got 7". However, if I splay my hand out and measure the maximum distance from the tip of my thumb to the tip of my little finger, it's 8". Maybe it is the width of the outstretched hand that he was measuring?

    I totally agree, though: my pen use and comfort continued to grow and improve as i realized the pens that fit my hand best and it is certainly something for people to consider.

    I think the site is mostly dormant now but a couple of young friends started a blog about pens that focused on this issue as the three had different hand sizes and grips. The comparison shots of same pen in different hands that they present are quite useful, and their reviews are well done. Take a look at Hand Over That Pen.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
    Senior Member silverlifter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    290
    Thanks
    156
    Thanked 279 Times in 129 Posts
    Rep Power
    3

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Presumably, he was referring to glove sizing (the only hand size "standard" I am aware of). You measure around the circumference of your palm: 8" would be a men's S.
    Vintage. Cursive italic. Iron gall.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    33
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Rep Power
    0

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    The way to measure hand size is here: https://choosehandsafety.org//choosi...hand-tool-size

    According to this method my hands are a little over 8 inches. Having said that, I like smaller pens, such as M400 size, so I wonder if it's all a little overblown?

    Ralf

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    23
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 15 Times in 9 Posts
    Rep Power
    0

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by ralfstc View Post
    The way to measure hand size is here: https://choosehandsafety.org//choosi...hand-tool-size

    According to this method my hands are a little over 8 inches. Having said that, I like smaller pens, such as M400 size, so I wonder if it's all a little overblown?

    Ralf
    That method looks like what Brown was doing. I get 7 3/8".

    "A person's hand size is measured by the length of their hand. A British Study found that hand sizes for males range from 6.25" to 8.1" with an average hand size of 7.44"." https://choosehandsafety.org//choosi...-tool-size#ft1, quoting https://www.theaveragebody.com/average-hand-size/.

    When I got my first "serious" fountain pen, I found that a MB149 was too big, so I got a 146. Now I use a Pelikan M805 and it's just right.
    Dan Kalish
    Fountain Pens: Pelikan Souveran M805, Waterman Expert II, Waterman Phileas, Stipula Splash, Sheaffer Sagaris, Sheaffer School

  6. #6
    Senior Member guyy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Brooklyn NY
    Posts
    229
    Thanks
    23
    Thanked 121 Times in 77 Posts
    Rep Power
    4

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Hands come in different shapes. Some are longer, some are thicker, some have a greater range. Those measurements will vary.

    But does it matter that much? Americans are slightly smaller than they used to be (except around the waist and on the scale), but yet we have people saying standard 51s are too small. Funny that they werenít too small back in the day.

    I have larger than sbrebrown sized hands and i can write with everything from golf pencils, to 52 1/2 Vs to KoPs. Whatís most comfortable? I use 149s often, love the KoP and senior Duofolds, but for extended writing i like 51s for their form & Pelikan 400nns for their low weight. The MB 14/24 is right in the sweet spot, light and sized to forget.

  7. The Following User Says Thank You to guyy For This Useful Post:

    Kaputnik (June 27th, 2020)

  8. #7
    Senior Member FredRydr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Carlisle, Pennsylvania USA
    Posts
    3,071
    Thanks
    669
    Thanked 3,189 Times in 1,357 Posts
    Rep Power
    12

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    What would Goldilocks do?

  9. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Tennessee USA
    Posts
    363
    Thanks
    176
    Thanked 194 Times in 119 Posts
    Rep Power
    1

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by kaliuzhkin View Post
    In several videos of pen reviews and comparisons, the author talks about the size of pens and how the size should match your hand size. I believe one of these videos was rbebrown comparing Pelikans and Montblancs. He noted that his hand size was 8" and, I think, concluded that a Pelikan M1000 or MB 149 were the right size.

    How do you measure hand size? If I go from the tip of my middle finger to the base of my thumb, I get 7". That doesn't seem right. Unlike our President, I don't have small hands and 7" is a lot less than Brown's 8".
    I'm curious what is going on in a person's head that would cause them to conceive of such nonsense?

  10. #9
    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    4,903
    Thanks
    5,184
    Thanked 7,539 Times in 2,808 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
    I'm curious what is going on in a person's head that would cause them to conceive of such nonsense?
    You'll have to explain yourself rather than just proclaim it "nonsense".

    Pens come in many sizes and shapes (and weights) and hands size, including finger length, and finding the best match to one's hand can have very positive benefits for the writing experience. While I would never consider some formula for equating "this pen with this hand size", I do think that one can certainly calibrate the parameters to make for the user's benefit.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

  11. #10
    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    4,903
    Thanks
    5,184
    Thanked 7,539 Times in 2,808 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    What would Goldilocks do?
    She'd huff, and she'd puff, and... oh, wait.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

  12. #11
    Senior Member Empty_of_Clouds's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    1,944
    Thanks
    455
    Thanked 1,512 Times in 698 Posts
    Rep Power
    8

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    This is a subject I've remarked upon in several other threads. Except in circumstance of exceptional difference, i.e. enormous hands and size 0 pen, there is no correlation between hand size, pen size and ease of use. Most of the problems people have with comfortability actually stem from poor writing technique.

    If one is not going to go to the effort of training their hand anew, then it seems quite reasonable to discuss pen dimensions with respect to comfort. However, it would be inaccurate and misleading to new users to hear that big hands need big pens (for example).

    Controversial perhaps, but it seems that this issue of size is a relatively recent complaint.


    Edited one time, for poor typing technique!
    Last edited by Empty_of_Clouds; June 26th, 2020 at 11:24 PM.
    The thing is, we're all pretty on edge at the moment. It would be great if people could be considerate of others in these matters. Not much else will change the situation beyond that. - Jon Szanto

    Why canít people read responses to glean the intent and ideas being offered, instead of focusing on things like tone, length and perceived agendas? - Jon Szanto

  13. The Following User Says Thank You to Empty_of_Clouds For This Useful Post:

    Kaputnik (June 27th, 2020)

  14. #12
    Senior Member RocketRyan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Surrey UK
    Posts
    759
    Thanks
    38
    Thanked 215 Times in 157 Posts
    Rep Power
    4

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    As a rule of thumb I find grip more important than pen size when it comes to comfort.

  15. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Tennessee USA
    Posts
    363
    Thanks
    176
    Thanked 194 Times in 119 Posts
    Rep Power
    1

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
    I'm curious what is going on in a person's head that would cause them to conceive of such nonsense?
    You'll have to explain yourself rather than just proclaim it "nonsense".

    Pens come in many sizes and shapes (and weights) and hands size, including finger length, and finding the best match to one's hand can have very positive benefits for the writing experience. While I would never consider some formula for equating "this pen with this hand size", I do think that one can certainly calibrate the parameters to make for the user's benefit.
    I immediately thoughts of Itzhak Perlman's fingers. As you probably know, he is a world acclaimed violinist with large fingers.

    Then I considered the size of dental and surgical instruments. Lastly I considered that in general humans adapt to the tool. The idea that a large handed person "requires" a certain size pen is nonsense. It is an variation on the oft suggestion that "size matters" and usually perpetrated by men...LOL!!
    Last edited by Chuck Naill; June 27th, 2020 at 03:51 AM.

  16. The Following User Says Thank You to Chuck Naill For This Useful Post:

    Deb (June 27th, 2020)

  17. #14
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Berkshire UK
    Posts
    6,338
    Thanks
    3,167
    Thanked 5,350 Times in 2,142 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by RocketRyan View Post
    As a rule of thumb I find grip more important than pen size when it comes to comfort.
    I'm in this category. As long as the grip is very comfortable and not slippery, and the unposted pen goes past the "webbing" between my first finger and thumb, then it's usually good enough for me to write with. Measurements aren't important. I just go on how it feels in my hand.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

  18. #15
    Senior Member Deb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Highlands of Scotland
    Posts
    1,635
    Thanks
    998
    Thanked 1,579 Times in 760 Posts
    Rep Power
    9

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by RocketRyan View Post
    As a rule of thumb I find grip more important than pen size when it comes to comfort.
    That applies to me too. I have small hands but I use a variety of sizes of pens. I have a Senior Duofold. My Swan SF230s are a similar size. At the other end of the scale my Geha is a short, slender pen and I have 80s and 90s Japanese pens that are very slender. They all work for me. The ones that don't are heavy pens.
    Regards,
    Deb
    My Blog
    My Pen Sales

  19. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    205
    Thanks
    309
    Thanked 251 Times in 104 Posts
    Rep Power
    6

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    I suspect some of this obsession with size comes not from the size of the hand, but how someone holds their pen. Iíve noticed that younger users often grip their pens very tightly, which will set up cramping in the muscles used. The smaller the section on the pen, the tighter the muscles are clenched, and the more discomfort will arise.

    While the best solution would be to relearn how to hold the pen (I have a very relaxed grip and can comfortably use anything from a tiny pencil up to a MB 146), most people seem to be unaware of the issue. And frankly, itís not easy to relearn something as deeply ingrained as holding a pen. So the solution seems to be a pursuit of ever bigger pens that keep the fingers naturally less clenched while forming letters.

    Personally, I much pickier about weight. I canít write with a heavy pen. It feels like Iím trying to walk while pushing a schoolbus in front of me.

  20. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to elaineb For This Useful Post:

    BlkWhiteFilmPix (June 27th, 2020), Deb (June 27th, 2020), Jon Szanto (June 27th, 2020)

  21. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    108
    Thanks
    30
    Thanked 84 Times in 50 Posts
    Rep Power
    2

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    What would Goldilocks do?
    At first she tried the MontBlanc Classique, but that was too small.

    Then, she tried the MontBlanc 149. but that was too big.

    Then she tried the MontBlanc 146 and it was just right.

  22. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Sandy For This Useful Post:

    Chrissy (June 27th, 2020), Kaputnik (June 27th, 2020), Scrawler (June 27th, 2020)

  23. #18
    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    4,903
    Thanks
    5,184
    Thanked 7,539 Times in 2,808 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
    I immediately thoughts of Itzhak Perlman's fingers. As you probably know, he is a world acclaimed violinist with large fingers.

    Then I considered the size of dental and surgical instruments. Lastly I considered that in general humans adapt to the tool. The idea that a large handed person "requires" a certain size pen is nonsense. It is an variation on the oft suggestion that "size matters" and usually perpetrated by men...LOL!!
    Well, I'm not in the camp about "requiring" a size, and I laugh, as well, over the concepts like the Sheaffer PFM.

    But I don't think the physical dimensions of a tool and it's relation to comfortable and effective use are nonsense. My career has been in professional music, and as part of the orchestra, I've accompanied Mr. Perlman on a number of concerts. I note that he chose not to use a 1/16, 1/8, 1/4 or even 1/2-size violin - though that is what many young players start with - but a full sized instrument.

    I consider the girth of the grip to be part of size, as well. It tends to be a big part of what makes a pen more comfortable in use, to me. I'm also not saying that humans are not adaptable - of course they are. Yet the entire field of ergonomics would not exist if there were not aspects of design, construction and (most importantly) use of tools that more closely matched a physically easier or more comfortable experience. For the same reason major league baseball players don't pick up the exact same bat, just as drummers don't all use the same size/shape drumstick - even though they could - I think it makes sense that the size of a pen can either improve or degrade a pen users experience if chosen with some thought.

    Of course, we may not all agree on this, but I don't think it is a nonsensical consideration in the least.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

  24. #19
    Senior Member Scrawler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,086
    Thanks
    963
    Thanked 1,026 Times in 478 Posts
    Rep Power
    9

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Hand age more than size determine what you will be comfortable holding. When my hands were young they could pick up a quarter inch diameter stick pen and use it, as well as any larger pens I got my hands on. Now I find I gravitate towards larger pens so that I do not have to close my fingers so far.

  25. #20
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Berkshire UK
    Posts
    6,338
    Thanks
    3,167
    Thanked 5,350 Times in 2,142 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: Pen Size Matching Hand Size

    Quote Originally Posted by Scrawler View Post
    Hand age more than size determine what you will be comfortable holding. When my hands were young they could pick up a quarter inch diameter stick pen and use it, as well as any larger pens I got my hands on. Now I find I gravitate towards larger pens so that I do not have to close my fingers so far.
    I agree I admit I also tend to go for fatter pens rather than slimmer pens.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •