Author Topic: Alternative to dip pen  (Read 528 times)

Offline Empty_of_Clouds

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Alternative to dip pen
« on: September 10, 2021, 02:21:45 AM »
Just stumbled across a video about a fountain pen with dip pen characteristics.  Initial thought was along the lines of those Zebra G conversions, but the makers claim otherwise*



If these are truly non-corroding nib they may be a bit of a game changer for calligraphers on the hoof!  :)



*makers claims came from another site, same nib though -  https://www.bluedewpens.com/faqs
The makers (Bluedew) seem to be located in Singapore, but Aaron's pens (in the video) look to be in the US.  Not sure about this.

« Last Edit: September 10, 2021, 02:23:53 AM by Empty_of_Clouds »

Offline darrin1200

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2021, 08:11:35 AM »
This is a very interesting nib. Reading both pages, it appears that Jeffery at BlueDew is a small maker that created the nib portion. He makes pens, but he also offers the nib triplet by itself. He says they are the same threading as a standard Bock nib, but not the same length. This would allow other makers, that have the right tooling, to utilize these nibs in there own creations.

This may be what the Arron Pen coy is doing. As there is no maker name listed, I canít say for sure. While itís also possible that BlueDew opened a USA based distribution point, I donít think that is the case. More investigation would be necessary.

I may try to order a couple of these nibs from BlueDew and try making one of my pens to fit it.
Aaaaaaah. Another project. 🤦🏻‍♂️
Darrin McArthur
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Offline darrin1200

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2021, 09:26:03 AM »
Well I just ordered a pair of these nibs. Jeffery at BlueDew responded to my query & seems to be a nice guy. I am looking forward to trying these.
Now I just have to wait for the Singapore mail.
Darrin McArthur
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Offline Aries M

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2021, 03:45:18 PM »
Wow these are beautiful pens! I took a cheaper route and ordered a Noodlers Ahab Flex fountain pen that is suppose to give the same line contrast as a traditional point pen. Looking forward to trying it out. Have you heard of/tried those?
« Last Edit: September 10, 2021, 07:31:49 PM by Aries M »

Offline Erica McPhee

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2021, 04:33:39 PM »
I don't know what happened... one thing led to another and within seconds, I had bought one.  ;D
Truly, Erica
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Offline JanisTX

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2021, 05:01:11 PM »
@Erica McPhee Will you please report back how you like it & how well it works?  Iím very interested!

Janis

Offline Erica McPhee

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2021, 05:06:46 PM »
Yes, definitely! I am very eager to try it. Thank you @Empty_of_Clouds for posting this! I have wanted something like this for quite some time. I bought one of the old Osmiroid Copperplate Fountain Pen but was never able to get it to work.
Truly, Erica
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Offline Empty_of_Clouds

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2021, 07:52:40 AM »
Oh dear! I hope nobody thought I was advertising for the company.  I don't own any of these products, only seen them on a couple of YouTube videos, and I was tempted to buy a couple of nib units and give them a try. However, $35 plus shipping is still a number that makes me hesitate. 

It will be interesting to hear how you get along with them, Erica.   If they're good then I'll jump in.  Funny thing is I brought this to the attention of the members of a fountain pen forum.  Normally there is considerable interest in fountain pens with flexible nibs, and there are few not-so-flexible examples around.  The nearest to performance of dip pen seems to be something called The Secretary of De Flex by penrealm.com,  but I don't think that one offers hairlines due to the added 'iridium' tipping.

@Aries M not tried a Noodler's Ahab but heard they can be quite stiff, need breaking in a bit and require some tinkering with feed setting.  All in all a real hobbyist's pen! Still they are relatively inexpensive and I read that they are nice writers even without the flex.   I have an Indian Click fountain pen with a nib marked flex, but I have to lean on it a bit to get any real variation in lines.  Good writer apart form that though.

@darrin1200 as I understand it the housing is for Bock threaded pens, but the feed and nib are a standard #6 size, so it should be possible to pull them out and rehouse in a Jowo nib holder.

Offline darrin1200

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2021, 08:32:56 AM »
No worries from me @Empty_of_Clouds , Iím glad you brought it up.

I was looking into the Zebra G nib unit from The Flexible Nib Factory. The cost however, was giving me pause. I also didnít like the amount of maintenance that may be required to keep the nib unit working.

I am really looking forward to trying these BlueDew nibs. Although the nib may, Iím not sure if the nib and feed will transfer to a Jowo housing. I suspect there will be some differences in the feed as well, due to the amount of ink a really flexible nib will need.

Hopefully the shipping will be quick, and I can play around and report back. @Erica McPhee I look forward to hearing how you like the Aaron pen.
Darrin McArthur
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Offline Empty_of_Clouds

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2021, 08:54:37 AM »
@darrin1200 I am in the same boat.  I've modified a couple of cheap fountain pens to accept the Zebra G nib, but only using a standard plastic feed.  They work for a while, and when they do it is great, but require plenty of fiddling with.  Too much really.

And I too have looked at the Flexible Nib Factory - in fact I have an ebonite feed coming to be fitted into a Pilot Custom 912 with a flexible falcon nib.

I guess the real issues are the ink flow and the durability of the nib over time. Dip nibs are not corrosion resistant.  Even the coated Zebra Gs don't last very long if used regularly.  A lot of fountain pens have steel nibs that don't corrode.  I am not a metallurgist so often wondered why they can't make a flexible steel nib out the same material.  Perhaps there is some difference in elasticity that I am unaware of.

Anyway, waiting with bated breath  for Flourish Forum reviews!  :D

Offline Elissa K.

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2021, 04:52:33 PM »
I have a Noodler's Nib Creaper, which is a smaller flex pen.  It does have nice flex, but isn't nearly as sharp as a dip nib.  Getting shades does require more pressure.  I think it's a great pen, but not for calligraphy.  One can write with it normally without any pressure and it doesn't catch; and if one wants some shades, they can be gotten; but the contrast isn't nearly as dramatic and clean as with a dip nib.

A long time ago I had a pen with a dip-type nib and reservoir.  I made the mistake of leaving it for a long time with ink in the reservoir, and it all rusted together.  But I think the design was very good, if a little finicky.  Lest you think I've been honing my calligraphy skills for more than a decade, not so.  That's why the pen rusted together...

Offline Erica McPhee

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2021, 12:11:41 PM »
Has anyone seen this one: StoneGraph Executive Flex Nib Fountain Pen. I had never seen it but now Instagram and Pinterest won't stop advertising it to me. (I'm sure because of my recent purchase.) Paul Antonio does a demonstration on the site.
Truly, Erica
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Offline AnasaziWrites

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2021, 05:13:27 PM »
Has anyone seen this one: StoneGraph Executive Flex Nib Fountain Pen. I had never seen it but now Instagram and Pinterest won't stop advertising it to me. (I'm sure because of my recent purchase.) Paul Antonio does a demonstration on the site.
@Erica McPhee
Interesting, when I click on that link, my security system (Bitdefender) temporarily blocks it, warning that it may download injurious software onto my computer, and asks me if I want to proceed to the website anyway (I didn't). Perhaps it's downloading cookies onto your system, resulting in the ads you're seeing.

Offline K-2

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2021, 06:14:07 PM »
@darrin1200 - I'll be looking forward to seeing what you come up with for those BlueDew nibs.  I love the broad edge set you made!

@Empty_of_Clouds & @Aries M - I had a Noodler's Creeper and an Ahab, but I gave them away, because I wasn't using them much.  They didn't have as much line variation as I was hoping for for drawing, it took a lot of pressure to force the flex, and was comically ill-suited for pointed pen calligraphy.

I've modified a few Jinhao 450x and 750x pens to take G-nibs - once you get them situated right, they work great, but don't last long.  The nibs corrode and the nipple-couplers to the ink reservoirs break, and occasionally I stab myself trying to get them apart for maintenance (once I ended up with a tiny accidental tattoo because the sharp nib had ink on it).  On the other hand, they only cost about US$5-$10.  They are heavy too (I prefer a lighter pen).  @Erica McPhee - those StoneGraph pens actually look a lot like Jinhaos, but 5 to 10 times the price.  I assume they're made of higher quality, more durable materials, and might be worth the price for pre-fitted flex nibs though.

I also have a Conklin Duragraph with an "Omniflex" nib - wooden body, nice looking.  But too stiff for real calligraphy, and not even very good for drawing.  The hairlines are not very hairlike either.  Disappoint.

I got a Fountain Pen Revolution pen with a flex nib - but I accidentally crushed it.  It was better than the Conklin, with finer hairlines than the Noodler's pens, but not as fine as my favorite pens: the Pilot Elabo and the Desiderata.

My favorite flexible fountain pen is a Pilot Elabo (essentially identical to the Falcon) with an "extra soft, extra fine" nib.  It has a feather-weight resin body, a screw-syphon fill, a 14k gold nib (which explains the price), ebonite feed, and great line variation.  The hairlines aren't as fine as the G-nibs, although the nib is more flexible and softer.  Highly recommend though - the whole writing/sketching experience is so great.

My next favorite is a Desiderata pen (https://www.desideratapens.com/about), which is built around a G-nib.  The proprietor hand-turns the pen bodies and ebonite feeds, so they are beautiful but also expensive.  Mine has a beautiful, lightweight ebonite body and feed, with an eyedropper fill that holds a lot of ink.  I really love sketching with it, and it can do pointed pen calligraphy. It "burps" occasionally, as dropper feeds do, but I use it mainly for quick sketches and kind of like the spontaneity of the little ink blurps.  Then again, those blurps also leave you with inky fingers, and I never travel with it, because of the danger of leaks.  And the danger of pen burp blurps might be a deal breaker for someone wanting really pristine Copperplate.  But if that's you - you're using a dip pen anyway.

I really enjoy refurbishing vintage pens, so I have a few pens with flexy nibs from the 1920s-30s that I bought at flea markets and junk shops.  The Pilot Elabo comes close to the flexiness and feel, but there's nothing exactly like them on the market these days.

Why yes, I guess I do buy myself a new pen every time I finish a big commission....why do you ask?

Offline Empty_of_Clouds

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Re: Alternative to dip pen
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2021, 06:44:07 PM »
@K-2   As I understand it the Pilot Elabo has a plastic feed, unless someone has fitted an aftermarket part (i.e. from the Flexible Nib Factory).   I have yet to try one.  I bought a Pilot 912 with an FA nib a while back that was super soft but no hairlines and not snappy. 

Just heard from Jeffery at Blue-Dew. He says that the nib and feed are unlikely to fit a Jowo housing, but the nib may work (presumably with the Jowo feed).  If that's the case then that's a shame because Jowo is far more common than Bock as far as I can tell.  You can even buy dip pen holders for Jowo nib units - lighter that a fountain pen.