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Thread: Fine vs smooth?

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    Default Fine vs smooth?

    Hey there good people on the interwebs.
    I used a fine nib today for the very first time. Lamy Cp1 on a rhodia pad. Even though it doesnt "feel" as nice as the M or the B, I feel like it compliments my hand writing because its pretty small. What should a noob do? Is there such a thing as a "wetter" fine? Is it even about wetness?
    Help a new guy out pls.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    What ink are you using? I find not all inks suit my sensibilities with a particular nib. I think it's worth trying another ink.

    Nibs can be tuned to some extent, and they can often be made smoother with a little careful use of micromesh. Also, it's not always about wetness in my experience, though wetter seems to be smoother. Of course if you make the nib write wetter, it may not lay down as fine a line on your paper of choice.

    Anyway, that's my relative newbie experience. There are others here with years of expertise who will have a more valuable opinion.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    I am using de artamentis Schiller, which is a very dark graphite I think. Was using napoleon before. Maybe it can be the ink..

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    Not familiar with the ink but Quink Black is at least medium wet, Iroshizuku Take-sumi is wetter still in my experience.

    Wetter is usually smoother. Some inks have a sort of lubricating effect too, like Waterman Serenity Blue or Mystery Blue, or J. Herbin Perle Noir. Some inks flow nicely in a wide range of pens like the previously mentioned Waterman inks and Robert Oster Carbon Fire.

    It is possible to increase flow a little by adjusting tine separation.

    If the nib seems to be catching on the paper, check tine alignment.

    Remove material as a last resort.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    I second the Waterman Serenity Blue. Also, I just got a bottle of Monteverde Document Black and it seems to also have a lubricating effect. It is also very black, but my pen needs to be cleaned well after use.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    VilaFrancaWeimar (October 24th, 2020)

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    I haven't experienced many De Atramentis inks but all of those I've written with have felt quite wet.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    Yes, the napoleon on an M nib got moist, and I also tried this new ink on a B and its wetter than the ocean. Starting to think I just dont love the feel on fines, and I guess its okay. People have preferences.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    I have a pretty smooth F Pelikan, with a bit of flex. Some Japanese needle point nibs can be a bit scratchy on the paper. I would suggest trying a sharp point dip nib just to have something to compare with. Even those vary a lot. The iridium point fine nibs on fountain pens tend to be smoother.

    I have a rather wet Swan pen with a fine point nib, so yes, they exist. I have never had a particularly wet Lamy, they tend to give a very even, dependable line of ink, suitable for almost any paper. I use fine poit a lot, particuarly when I need to fit the writing into rather narrowly ruled notebooks, or a flex nib I give a bit of pressure on the down stoke.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    When I restore my vintage pens, I tend to tune the Fine nibs for consistency. Because if the nib allows the ink to flow consistently, it's then up to the ink to show their individual characteristics.

    No nibs in service should be scratchy. But nibs will have varying degrees of feedback.

    What's the difference?

    If it's unpleasant and snags, that's "scratchy".

    If it transfers the feeling of the paper to your hand, and gives you more precise control, that's "feedback".

    Finer nibs will have a higher degree of feedback than wider ones.
    - Will
    Unique and restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    I agree with Will's comments above. Most of the vintage pens I keep are fine or EF Swans. Given that they are more than 60 years old and may have been knocked about a bit, they sometimes need a little tuning when I get them but there's no reason for a fine nib not to be smooth. The only modern/modernish pens I have are Japanese, also fine or EF and they're usually smooth out of the box.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    A nib should of course feel even in all directions, but some steel needle points sound positively squeeky across the paper compared to the smoothest firm medium nibs. So does titanium zebra G nibs. I think some protest when the word scratchy is used, since a nib should always be even and not cut into the paper fibers like a damaged or rough nib can. I should choose words more carefully. This doesn't really apply to any of the current Lamy nibs I have seen or tried, they should be relatively smooth, even if an EF never will be the same as a M. I have tried all the basic Lamy nibs, EF to B and stubs. I have yet to try the gold nib. You can find smoother and wetter flowing nibs than Lamy if that is a point.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    Thank you all. I need to remind folks I didnt use the word scratchy. Just my subjective experience, I guess.

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    Default Re: Fine vs smooth?

    I only use Waterman ink and I use LAMY and vintage, mostly Esterbrook. Regardless of the nib, I am perfectly content with Waterman.

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