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Other Dip Pens Like This One (Or Better)?

dip pens reservoir

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11 replies to this topic

#1 Qoan

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 11:30

I got this pen with a calligraphy dip pen set I received as a gift some years ago. I'd say it is a regular, cheap Chinese 'student pen' of some sort. At the beginning I didn't pay much attention to it, as I use mostly left oblique and italic nibs (for writing in the Arabic and Latin alphabet) and flex nibs on occasion. Here are a couple of pics of it (side up and side down):

 

DSC_6006 - copia.JPG

DSC_6007 - copia.JPG

 

It has no flex and gives a regular EF line with no line variation at all. It isn't the smoothest writer (it's a bit toothy) but it has a huge deposit on the back, meaning I can fill about three quarters of a regular A4 sheet with a single dip. Also, I'm a right-handed overwriter and my hold of the pen is usually between 120-150º. I obviously switch to underwrite for traditional calligraphy, but then I write very slow with attention to detail. However, I have relatively recently discovered that, with stiffer pens, as this one and other 'general purpose' pens (such as Leonardt 256, which is readily available where I live, to give an example), I can write with my usual hold (and my usual handwriting) while using a wider variety of inks than a fountain pen would safely allow.

 

The big question is I have been looking for a pen with this kind of reservoir elsewhere, to replace this in case it gets damaged, but to no avail. The only pens that appear to be sold with a reservoir in the UK are Brause and Leonardt square pens (and Mitchell's with the removable reservoir) and while I have found some pens with apparently similar characteristics and a reservoir over the nib on Ebay and AliExpress (sold as comic sets) I haven't found even those on specialized websites (such as Scribblers or Penmandirect in the UK). The pen has the number 126 written on it, together with two Chinese characters which appear to be 灯告 (although I'm not sure because Google Translate says this means a 'lamp' and I sadly know nothing about Chinese). Anyway, this information hasn't helped me on my search.

 

So do any of you know of any similar pens (possibly smoother) and where could they be had?

 



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#2 Marlow

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 13:00

Very interested to know the answer to this, too.


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#3 D B Holtz

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 13:08

There are two US suppliers that might have what you are looking for. John Neal Bookseller (item N204), and Paper Ink Arts (at the end of the Nibs section) both have nibs with reservoirs.

Hope this helps,
DB

#4 sidthecat

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 18:58

John Neal also has a very interesting assortment of nibs, if you have a mind to experiment.

#5 Qoan

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 19:35

There are two US suppliers that might have what you are looking for. John Neal Bookseller (item N204), and Paper Ink Arts (at the end of the Nibs section) both have nibs with reservoirs.

Hope this helps,
DB

 

 

 

John Neal also has a very interesting assortment of nibs, if you have a mind to experiment.

 

Thanks a lot for the info. The ones at Paper Ink Arts are like those I had seen at Scribblers, but John Neal's N204 is a completely new thing (at least for me). The thing is all these nibs are flexible, so they won't work for the same kind of writing I do with this Chinese pen, but the spring can probably be attached to other nibs as well and I see that they have quite a range of nibs (among others) so maybe this could be arranged. But I don't know if it would be worth to have them sent from the US, the postage fees are usually quite substantial...

 

Actually, looking for info online about this Ink Cage I found a post in this very forum explaining how to make a DIY one, so I may buy some wire and experiment, that could be cheaper if I get to make it right after two or three tries. So, yeah, not exactly what I was looking for, but a couple of exciting alternatives!  :)

 

Anyway, I'd still be happy to know if some one has any info on this particular pen. It's in all probability a mass produced Chinese product, I can't be the only one to have, can I?

 

(edited for typos)


Edited by Qoan, 07 July 2019 - 19:36.


#6 sidthecat

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Posted 07 July 2019 - 20:29

There’s also a thread somewhere about creating a reservoir out of wax.

#7 Qoan

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Posted 08 July 2019 - 09:08

Found it! (I think)

 

This is also ingenious, and it looks like beeswax is not hard to procure, and the simple method (the post then goes on to more complicated DIY plastic reservoirs) is much less technical than making your own Ink Cage out of wire, so I may try both when I have a bit of free time.

 

Thanks again for the suggestions! 



#8 AAAndrew

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Posted 10 July 2019 - 00:02

The nib you show in your original post has what is called a Round or Oval tip. This makes it a smoother (and thus) faster writer. Some very common vintage nibs with this kind of tip include the Esterbrook 788 and 905 Falcon. The 788 is a spoon shaped nib and thus has the potential, using a reservoir, to hold a very large amount of ink. 

 

If you do managed to get a reservoir on a 788, please post. That should be an interesting experiment.



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#9 Marlow

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Posted 10 July 2019 - 16:37

This topic reminds me of an Onoto that came to me recently minus its actual nib...

 

i7g6.JPG i7g5.JPG


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#10 Qoan

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Posted 10 July 2019 - 20:48

The nib you show in your original post has what is called a Round or Oval tip. This makes it a smoother (and thus) faster writer. Some very common vintage nibs with this kind of tip include the Esterbrook 788 and 905 Falcon. The 788 is a spoon shaped nib and thus has the potential, using a reservoir, to hold a very large amount of ink. 
 
If you do managed to get a reservoir on a 788, please post. That should be an interesting experiment.

 
Thanks for the suggestions, AAAndrew. I've been looking in the 'usual suspects', but Esterbrook pens seem quite hard (i.e. really expensive) to procure this side of the Atlantic. Do you know of comparable pens available in Europe, either vintage or contemporary, or reasonable suppliers of those two pens? 

 

Going back to the experiments, I didn't have much free time these days, but I did find some wire home. I was surprised of how easy it was to wire it around a bic pen refill, it basically wired itself. Then it was trickier to put it in the right place. I experimented with a Leonardt 256 (because I have some spares) and after four tries, I got it working about right. This is how it looks when full of ink:

There are still issues with the flow though. Bellow is the same fragment of a poem (badly) written with a regular Leonardt 256 (up) and with the pen modified with a coil reservoir (bottom). It is apparent how the ink doesn't flow as readily. Still, I dipped twice to write the upper poem and I could've written it at least 20x with the modified pen:

 



#11 AAAndrew

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Posted 10 July 2019 - 22:22

Interesting experiment. 

 

Here are ones from my collection made somewhere in Europe, mostly Britain, and that I could find easily. I have others with American imprints, but were made in England, but that won't help you find them elsewhere. I'm sure there are many more, but my collection leans heavily towards American pens.

 

516EF D. Leonardt & Co.
516F D. Leonardt & Co.
110 J. B. Mallat
0591F Wm Mitchell’s
0591F Wm Mitchell’s
0649 Wm Mitchell’s
410 EF Parson’s
11 Perry & Co.
2202 Perry & Co.'s
2203 Perry & Co.'s


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#12 Qoan

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 22:53

Thanks again. When I have some free time I'll try to find some of those pens and see if some kind of reservoir can be attached. 

In the meantime I'll have to keep experimenting with this one, because ink flow is still an issue...







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