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Help me choose the perfect nib

Home > Help me choose > Help me choose the perfect nib

A key decision for fountain pen lovers is choosing the correct nib.

The way of writing is a unique and personal characteristic and the nib will determine how our fountain pen writes.

The nib is the most iconic element of a fountain pen. It is the fixed end that makes ink flow from the inside of the pen allowing us to write and draw.

In order to choose the right nib for us we have to consider four main factors: Size, materials, shape and flexibility.

  • Size

The nib size will have a great impact on our handwriting. Generic nib sizes are Extra Fine (EF), Fine (F), Medium (M) and Broad (B).

Fine nibs are advisable for people with small and clear handwriting. Their fine lines prevent letters from joining. It is the favorite of many when using a fountain pen for daily writing as its finish is more similar to a pen or rollerball.  

A Medium or Broad nib is recommended for those with long hand writing. Its tip is usually wet, allowing the user to adapt easily to a quicker writing rhythm. It is the ideal nib for those to want a fountain pen for signing, calligraphy or showcasing inks.  

However, it is important to keep in mind that Japanese fountain pens have a slightly finer line than European. This is because Japanese handwriting is thicker and more complex than European, requiring a finer and more precise nib.

Moreover, there are brands like Nakaya and Aurora that offer special nibs (oblique or stub, italic...)

Material

The nib's material is less important when choosing a fountain pen. Most popular materials are stainless steel, gold and ruthenium. Nonetheless, while we can't affirm materials determine softness and nib performance, each have some characteristics that can condition our election.

Steel is one of the most modern and popular materials in fountain pens. This is because it allows great quality at an economic price. These nibs are really resistant but not as flexible as gold nibs.

Gold is the most valued material by collectors. These nibs are known for their flexibility and great resistance on all kinds of materials.

When its rhodium plated gold, the plating makes their color turn into silver making them even more resistant.

On another hand, bicolor nibs share the resistance and flexibility of a gold nib adding amazing designs and finishes in gold and white gold.  

Ruthenium is another popular material when decorating fountain pens. It hardens, strengthens and achieves a greater resistance in the nib being one of the most resistant materials when avoiding corrosion.

  • Shape

Nibs have different sizes in order to create different lines. The majority of nibs share a round tip, creating uniform lines regardless of the nibs direction or orientation with the paper.

Another popular shape is the italic, also known as stub. The nib of italic nibs can be distinguished as it is broad and flat. Italic nibs create vertical broad flat lines and horizontal thin lines. They are perfect for calligraphy but can also be used to give a special touch to our daily writing. They require a little more practice and precision, but are worth the shot.

  • Flexibility

Flexibility refers to how nib tines open, depending on our pressure, creating variations in the lines' broadness. Flexibility is useful for the creation of calligraphy, however for daily writing the majority of fountain pen lovers choose firm nibs.

Place your order with full confidence!.

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Aurora Optima Jade Fountain Pen

Wonderful pen, very smooth. Customer service from Iguanasell excellent and pen arrived within I day from Madrid to UK. Can’t get better than that.

Midnight in Florence

Fabulous pen, very swift delivery - and best of all, Iguansell covers customs charges to the UK, so the price on the website is what you pay! Altogether excellent!

Visconti Van Gogh Starry Night Fountain

Great looking pen and great to write with!

Beautiful pen

I already own a pelikan m600, my favourite pen. I bought this for my organiser, slightly smaller and fine nib for the thinner lines. The pen looks stunning, great quality apart from the nib which felt very scratchy and irritating to use. I managed to fix it my self by polishing it with micro mesh. Writes fine now, but at this price I don’t expect to have to fix quality control issues myself, it should be just perfect out of the box.

U
S.T. Dupont Cigar Club Cuban Flag Ligne 2 Lighter, Limited Edition 016228
U.T.
Perfect

Thank you for the unique piece