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Flexible vs Cursive Italic nibs


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#1 penspouse

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Posted 05 April 2010 - 21:22

My hubby is a master with flexible nibs. His penmanship is gorgeous. Mine, on the other hand.... :sick: I can't get used to a flexible nib, but I like the line width variation. Would a Cursive Italic nib do the same thing or something similar. I realize a broader nib, will give more variation, but I like finer nibs. Could you get variation with a fine Cursive Italic? I have never had any experience with a CI nib, and would like your input before I purchase one. Or, even better, some of your writing samples with that nib would be wonderful to see, if you are willing to post them.
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#2 HelzBelz

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Posted 05 April 2010 - 21:45

You will get line variation with a cursive italic nib, although it'll be different to that given by a flexible nib. personally, I love and use both on a very regualr basis. I find cursive italics the best for everyday writing, as they don't require me to think about their use at all, and look pretty.

I have a picture of my writing with a 0.7 mm cursive italic nib below: I suspect you may want a finer one than this, though.
pens 005
Inked: Pelikan 400nn, Pilot VP, Pelikan M400, Pelikan M200, Pelikan 400, Pelikan M101n, Esterbrook SJ
| <a href=http://www.flickr.com/photos/27410410@N05/>Flickr</a>



#3 penspouse

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Posted 06 April 2010 - 01:36

You will get line variation with a cursive italic nib, although it'll be different to that given by a flexible nib. personally, I love and use both on a very regualr basis. I find cursive italics the best for everyday writing, as they don't require me to think about their use at all, and look pretty.

I have a picture of my writing with a 0.7 mm cursive italic nib below: I suspect you may want a finer one than this, though.
<snip>

Thanks for the picture. This is the nib I was considering purchasing. I might like one finer, though. Doe anyone have a sample to share with a finer Cursive Italic nib?

Edited by penspouse, 06 April 2010 - 01:37.

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#4 watch_art

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:13

here's my first fountain pen ever. lamy safari M nib. i ground it to an italic or maybe it's more of a cursive italic??

but after a little work on the crocus and getting points smoothed out, it's a quick wet writer. not too wet, just where
i like it.
but it gives some really nice line variation too. but i still prefer my waterman. i gifted this one to my wife and i
think she's quite please. :clap1:


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fpn_1405136194__fpn_1404594699__sg_tag.j sigpic14481_1.gif vanness.jpg?t=1321916122


#5 wykpenguin

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 14:33

IMG_2562.jpg

#6 penspouse

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 15:22

wykpenguin - Thanks for the post. Beautiful writing samples. I'm not looking to do fancy calligraphy. I would just like to see some line variation in my regular cursive and am looking for the bet nib with which to do it.
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#7 PatientType

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 17:11

I was on the same quest ... achieve some classy line variation without going to vintage full flex nibs. I'm not a calligrapher and lack the patience and motivation to become one.

I've gotten some factory italic nibs (Conway Stewart & Bexley) and found that the fine italic nibs offer very subtle differences in the vertical and horizontal lines. Larger nibs provide more noticeable and pleasing variation.

I'm also finding that, now that I've been using fountain pens for awhile, broader nibs - both italic and not - are quite usable. Initially, my little letter loops would become blobs with a broad nib. By slowing down and writing a little larger I can comfortably use a broad nib AND still produce quite readable words. Not only are the words readable, but they're better looking and, with the broader nibs, there is more opportunity to appreciate different ink colors and shadings.

So, italic-wise, my advice would be, "Be bold and go broad."

Edited by PatientType, 09 April 2010 - 18:19.


#8 wykpenguin

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 13:53

The point is to show that Italic nibs and flex nibs both give line variation, but in different places.

I like to use the clock example. Think of the letter O, an Italic nib will give thin lines from 10-11 and 3-4 and thick lines at other points. With a flex nib, you can only get thick lines on downstrokes. Assuming you write your O with one counter-clockwise stroke, the thick will come out between 7-11.

Crisp italic nibs will give more line variation than a cursive Italic nib but will also dig into the paper if not held at the correct angles. As others have mentioned, broad will give more line variation than thin because the thinnest part is the same regardless of the nib width. For flex nibs, go for the thinnest ones to get the most line variation.

#9 penspouse

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 15:30

The point is to show that Italic nibs and flex nibs both give line variation, but in different places.

I like to use the clock example. Think of the letter O, an Italic nib will give thin lines from 10-11 and 3-4 and thick lines at other points. With a flex nib, you can only get thick lines on downstrokes. Assuming you write your O with one counter-clockwise stroke, the thick will come out between 7-11.

Crisp italic nibs will give more line variation than a cursive Italic nib but will also dig into the paper if not held at the correct angles. As others have mentioned, broad will give more line variation than thin because the thinnest part is the same regardless of the nib width. For flex nibs, go for the thinnest ones to get the most line variation.

Very informative! Thanks.
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#10 watch_art

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 15:34

http://www.fountainp...ost__p__1500390

fpn_1405136194__fpn_1404594699__sg_tag.j sigpic14481_1.gif vanness.jpg?t=1321916122


#11 troglokev

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Posted 11 April 2010 - 09:15

Just to give some idea of that Wykpenguin is saying:
Posted Image
Compare the cross strokes on the t and the F, also the shape of the a and the e.

An italic nib is much easier to use, and would probably suit the OP's purpose.

#12 Pengrump

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Posted 11 April 2010 - 12:50

It never fails with me. I use stubs and cursive italics in letters and get no response becuase my handwriting looks ordinary (and not very good). But as soon as I use a flex nib, the recipients of my letters write, "Wow, your handwriting looked really elegant in that last letter." I suspect that some people just write better with edged pens and others with flex nibs, and I happen to be in the latter camp.

#13 fenriz

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Posted 17 April 2010 - 08:45

Penspouse!

Maybe I can help you- I think I know what you're going for. I love both flexible pens and italics, but there's a special place in my heart for a very fine CI or a finer than usual stub. I like them smooth, not crisp, and fine, with a discernable line variation. I have a Visconti Opera Club with a M nib ground to a stub, which wound up pretty fine, and I have a Visconti Van Gogh Midi (steel nib) also with a M nib that was ground way down, maybe to a .3 mm CI. I've also got an Esterbrook 2048 nib, which is flexible (but it's steel, so not really flexible), and it's extremely fine and cut square on the end. Square on the end is how I got it, but it wasn't NOS, so it may've been modified at some point- the effect is the same.

As soon as I figure out how to post a sample I will. It's true that with a broader CI you'll get way more variation and dramatic effect, though you expressed interest in something finer than the .7mm sample from HelzBelz. With a fine CI you will get a clean, sharp and elegant line, subtly different from a normal F nib. The effect is subtle and very beautiful, especially with bold inks like Noodler's Red. I use the fine CI/stub with my daily running hand and, my penmanship notwithstanding, it looks very pretty.

I'll post images in the next week or so.

Happy Penning!!

PS- regarding the line variation of italic nibs vs flexies, the way I hold an italic (to use the clock illustration) I get broad strokes from 2 through 4 o'clock, and again from 8 through 10 o'clock. So an italic is broadest at 9 and 3, finest at 12 and 6. Make sense? Hope it helps.

#14 penspouse

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Posted 17 April 2010 - 21:10

Penspouse!

Maybe I can help you- I think I know what you're going for. I love both flexible pens and italics, but there's a special place in my heart for a very fine CI or a finer than usual stub. I like them smooth, not crisp, and fine, with a discernable line variation. I have a Visconti Opera Club with a M nib ground to a stub, which wound up pretty fine, and I have a Visconti Van Gogh Midi (steel nib) also with a M nib that was ground way down, maybe to a .3 mm CI. I've also got an Esterbrook 2048 nib, which is flexible (but it's steel, so not really flexible), and it's extremely fine and cut square on the end. Square on the end is how I got it, but it wasn't NOS, so it may've been modified at some point- the effect is the same.

As soon as I figure out how to post a sample I will. It's true that with a broader CI you'll get way more variation and dramatic effect, though you expressed interest in something finer than the .7mm sample from HelzBelz. With a fine CI you will get a clean, sharp and elegant line, subtly different from a normal F nib. The effect is subtle and very beautiful, especially with bold inks like Noodler's Red. I use the fine CI/stub with my daily running hand and, my penmanship notwithstanding, it looks very pretty.

I'll post images in the next week or so.

Happy Penning!!

PS- regarding the line variation of italic nibs vs flexies, the way I hold an italic (to use the clock illustration) I get broad strokes from 2 through 4 o'clock, and again from 8 through 10 o'clock. So an italic is broadest at 9 and 3, finest at 12 and 6. Make sense? Hope it helps.

Most helpful. Thank you. I look forward to seeing your writing sample.
Soli Deo Gloria


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