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How to use a dip pen?

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4 replies to this topic

#1 jules133


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Posted 11 February 2008 - 21:09


I've recently purchased a dip pen set from pendemonium.com (great service!) to sate my curiosity with flourished handwriting. I'm very happy to say that the pen arrived today with 5 nibs. The description:

Brause Dip Pen with Esterbrook Nibs
Brause Dip Pen

Brause natural finished wood dip pen holders from Germany. Natural finish varies on each dip pen. We include with each Brause wood dip pen a selection of 5 different antique Esterbrook pen nibs. The Esterbrook nib assortment includes:

* 787 Fine Oval Point
* 942 Radio Firm Medium Stub
* 761 School, firm medium
* 910 Radio Pen, slightly flexible medium
* 1000 School Fine Firm

This is new to me (using dip pens) so I was hoping someone could share some tips on getting started? Any websites to learn some pretty script?

Thank you for looking!

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#2 kenfraser


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Posted 20 February 2008 - 23:04

There's nothing wrong with the Brause and Esterbrook equipment you've bought, but if you're just beginning, I would avoid pointed nibs for the time being, and start with some straight edged nibs - look here for example. Also, find a basic instruction book on italic writing - they're easily available on the net and there are good free instructions on italic lettering at the top of this forum.

good luck!

#3 bootyshox


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Posted 21 February 2008 - 01:54

To start you could pick up some ink that you like. Usually inks with somewhat amount of "flow" or ability to move across the paper is good. Remember to write on several sheets of paper to help protect the nib. Try not to press too hard as you may twist and permanently damage the nib. Last, dip the pen as you like. Though don't write a whole sentence with only one dip. Generally you'll need to dip every word or two.

You're welcome.

#4 jbb


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Posted 21 February 2008 - 04:00

I am totally hooked on writing with dip pens and use them as often as I use fountain pens. I use regular fountain pen ink -- mostly Noodler's. I do feel that different paper works with dip pens than with fountain pens. I prefer some of the more "toothy" papers like Southworth's 25% and 100% cotton paper. A super-smooth paper that might be delightful with a fountain pen won't allow you to get the nice thick-thin shading that is possible with dips.

#5 wednesday_mac


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Posted 21 February 2008 - 23:43

Some dip nibs are made to be used with copperplate, so you may want to research what your nibs were made to do.

If you don't use copperplate nibs with the proper technique, many will stutter over the paper and frustrate you unless you know how to use them. I have a vertical style which works with calligraphic nibs but is nothing but trouble with copperplate. Copperplate requires a right-slant that I've never mastered.

Good luck with your nibs.
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