The western companies, of course never agreed on a universal standard among them selves. They weren't stupid.
Japanese are not using the exact same standards outside of being skinner than western. I've learned lately....this post or so, Platinum is often the thinnest. But they have overlap..............so did western pen makers.
Tolerance makes that impossible not to overlap....but the edges of tolerance was a good half a width or more different.
It was though easy to get the nib width one wanted.....at the Corner Pens shop one tried a brand name pen, until a nib was found that suited the buyer. That was reported to the brand HQ.
Back in the day of One Man, One Pen..............Parker made a wider nib than Sheaffer for a good reason.........so the customer didn't get confused and buy a skinny nibbed Sheaffer.
Today where a 20 pen man is not the least bit unusual, the only 'confusion' I can see is XXF nibs marked as EF.
As mentioned a couple times I never see my B or M is too fat or skinny....just my needle nib is not narrow enough.
In the old days.....There were market surveys from the corner pen shop...what did the customers want in nib widths. And Parker customers wanted and were trained to want a fatter line.
....and the then skilled pen salesman (the good old days ) knew how to push a nib. If the customer was a Parker man, then he was shown Parker pens, and a nice wet line was pushed. If he was a Sheaffer man, then the thin crisp line was pushed.
Same with other now dead companies.
The pen companies, did not want a universal standard. It pushed what it was selling, a fat line, a skinny line. A Parker nail, the nib flex assortment of Sheaffer.
As stated when one bought a new pen every 7-10 years confusing a Parker fan with a skinny nib could have the man make a huge mistake and buy a Sheaffer.
Wahl-Eversharp had a flexible line in the '30's, semi-flex in the '40's....and went under, ending up a cheap pen ... too cheap for Parker's name.
Waterman had to run to France to survive....flexible nibs was passe in the States. Parker had to run to France also.........Sheaffer to Indonesia.
It is so sadly funny, Cross, a ball point maker in my youth.....bought up the failed Sheaffer and is now making them probably in China.
Ford and Chevy, was the same thing....I personally could never see a difference, but like fountain pens.....brand loyalty was needed. So one could count on a Parker to be wider than a Sheaffer.
This threads is about modern skinny nibs....which Japanese nib is skinniest oddly is not much played.. How very Odd, when skinny is all important.
.....just Western is too Fat...their EF is EF instead of being XXF.....miss marked Western nibs ..............sounds so much like the old flame wars with Waterman for skinny nibs.
Some fine poster started to do a survey that was to show Parker and Sheaffer was not fat...close to Japanese....don't know what ever came of that.
Edited by Bo Bo Olson, 12 January 2019 - 00:06.