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Thread: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

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    Default The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Hi, I am just fascinated by the old Flexi

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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Sorry but i am on my mobile and i cannot modify the message. So i am fascinated by the old flexible nibs from Waterman and Swan. I tried to replicate them with 0.5mm brass sheet, but I got a very stiff and hard point. So the question is, how did they do it? What thickness of the sheet did they make use of?

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    Senior Member Detman101's Avatar
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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    A trick that I've used to make more flexible "Flex Nibs" is to heat treat the metal.
    Softens it up nicely.
    But you have to know when to pull the nib from the fire or you wind up with a nib with no snapback.
    If you temper it correctly though and pull it from the fire at the right time...you can wind up with a wet noodle nib with great snapback also.

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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Vintage flex nibs vary quite a lot in thickness but an average one might be 0.11mm. There are a number of other things that contribute towards flexibility: the shape of the nib and the temper of the metal. 14k gold and steel can both make flex nibs. I don't think brass is suitable substitute.

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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Nibs arenít necessarily uniform in thickness, either

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    Jon Szanto (September 10th, 2020)

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    Senior Member Detman101's Avatar
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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    Nibs arenít necessarily uniform in thickness, either
    You got that right...just look at the Noodlers Ink nibs for verification.
    No two are alike...lol

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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Quote Originally Posted by Detman101 View Post
    A trick that I've used to make more flexible "Flex Nibs" is to heat treat the metal.
    Softens it up nicely.
    But you have to know when to pull the nib from the fire or you wind up with a nib with no snapback.
    If you temper it correctly though and pull it from the fire at the right time...you can wind up with a wet noodle nib with great snapback also.
    Actually, I would never heat treat any nib. Nor would I recommend it done by inexperienced hands.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Senior Member guyy's Avatar
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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Quote Originally Posted by Detman101 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    Nibs arenít necessarily uniform in thickness, either
    You got that right...just look at the Noodlers Ink nibs for verification.
    No two are alike...lol
    I mean that theyíre generally thicker at one end. Nibs are usually thicker at the tines than the tail.

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    azkid (September 10th, 2020)

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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    You can perhaps play with some nibs. Old alloy vintage they call it and many more names like some special steel etc.
    But playing with heat and some spirits will change it characteristic quality of writing. Never a nib on a direct flame they say. Especially Steel or Bronze Vintage dip nibs when it is to use for the first time it must be preapared. Some use it on a flame in "a few seconds by moving the nib" which is not recomended at all for any one who has not done it. Instead of the flame use 70% alcohol or Windex, or SLaive ( spit ) on the nib is the very populor methods. Or Use a Raw potato and stik the nib several times deep in will remove the Factroy preserving oil on the Pen. I use the Raw potato method and it is a good trick even when you dip nib is not getting good ink coting.
    It is highly advise not to heat any nib in flame. It changes completely the original tempering of the nib metal that is set for a particular nib to behave when it runs through a paper.
    You can test this on two exact nibs and barbeque one and match both writing. Steel nibs for a start.
    I have done it. If you want to go advance use two 14k Gold nibs. Or with two MB nibs.

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    Senior Member silverlifter's Avatar
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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    See Mike Masuyama's comments on vintage vs. modern flex and how the nibs are manufactured differently:
    https://fpgeeks.com/forum/showthread...l=1#post301689
    Vintage. Cursive italic. Iron gall.

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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: The thickness of a flexible vintage nib

    Quote Originally Posted by silverlifter View Post
    See Mike Masuyama's comments on vintage vs. modern flex and how the nibs are manufactured differently:
    https://fpgeeks.com/forum/showthread...l=1#post301689
    Man, thanks for that reference, as I didnít see that part of the thread. Iíve had quite a few nibs worked on by Mike, most while I watched, and he really knows this stuff.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
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