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What's Your Favorite Vintage Esterbrook Nib?

esterbrook vintage nibs favorite

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58 replies to this topic

#41 Estycollector

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Posted 16 June 2020 - 18:56

Might just stick with 048 Andrew. I am getting good enough to duplicate a FP nib. 


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#42 corgicoupe

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Posted 17 June 2020 - 14:52

Try the 314 if you haven't already.  I find it the easiest to use


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#43 welch

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Posted 17 June 2020 - 17:02

9668. Best medium nib. 2668 is good enough. 


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#44 gweimer1

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Posted 17 June 2020 - 18:17

9668. Best medium nib. 2668 is good enough. 

 

I always suggest that anyone getting their first Esterbrook start with the 9668 nib.  It's not only one of the best Esterbrook nibs, but it can run head-to-head with any number of better known medium nibs.



#45 corgicoupe

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 01:51

I agree with Gary that the 9668 is a good starting nib but I prefer a finer nib for my style of writing, so the 3556 might be my first choice. My second choice would be the 9314-M which in my hand is a F/M nib and almost as smooth as the 9668/2668.


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#46 pajaro

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 04:27

2461 and 9460.  These have well controlled flow.  Mediums like 9668 and 2668 flow too much ink for me.  This is probably why I liked the 2312 and 9312, along with the 9314 or 2314 in F, M and even B widths.  A more pleasant and less gushing flow of ink that didn't close up my "e's" and even "a's." 


Edited by pajaro, 18 June 2020 - 04:32.

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#47 Estycollector

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 09:35

I am enjoying reading the thoughts of our forum's seasoned Esterbrook collectors. Thank you for sharing your experiences. I've tried to imagine walking into a store with those large nib displays I've seen on eBay and trying to decide which nib to purchase. I suspect a person who was an accountant or similar profession would just go with the "posting" nib. Or the person doing short hand the Gregg they wanted or could afford. 


Edited by Estycollector, 18 June 2020 - 15:26.

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#48 AAAndrew

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 13:26

I am enjoying reading the thoughts of our forums seasoned Esterbrook collectors. Thank you for sharing your experiences. I've tried to imagine walking into a store with those large nib displays I've seen on eBay and trying to decide which nib to purchase. I suspect a person who was an accountant or similar profession would just go with the "posting" nib. Or the person doing short hand the Gregg they wanted or could afford. 

 

It's an interesting thought exercise. Just from the sheer numbers of surviving nibs, it doesn't seem that people's preferences in steel dip pens translated over to the fountain pen nibs. 

 

Esterbrook's biggest sellers, according to the advertisements and seemingly verified by number of surviving examples, were consistently the 048 Falcon, the 448 Jackson Stub, the 14 Bank, and the 788 Oval Point. Others were more common in schools, like the 123 and 556. Yet, the x048 and x448 are fairly uncommon renewpoint nibs. 

 

The 668 Oval Point was not a best selling dip pen, but the x668, as others have pointed out above, is a good, all-around nib and fairly commonly found. 

 

It seems from surviving evidence (always a risk to extrapolate from, but it's what we have), it seems that when people made the transition to fountain pens they didn't just pick up the "equivalent" to their preferred dip pens.  



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#49 Estycollector

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Posted 18 June 2020 - 15:44

I read  that Esterbrook had dip pen nibs named for professions such as the "Judicial" nib and one for a barrister. Even the "Court House" nib. Also interesting is that Esterbrook referred to the nib as a pen. Or, it is listed this way in the much appreciated Esterbrook Project resource.

 

We know there were medical pens for doctors and nurses. 

 

Either these nib were that different or Esterbrook was savvy is appealing to the wide array of demographics and consumers of their heyday. 


Edited by Estycollector, 18 June 2020 - 15:45.

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#50 corgicoupe

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Posted 19 June 2020 - 12:01

And yet, the first fountain pens thy made carried the 314 nib in 14k, and were named Relief after the nib. This was followed by the x314-F, x314-M, and x314-B in the Renew nibs..

 

In the case of the 048, the 2048 more closely follows the original design than does the 9048 and behaves a bit more like the dip pen, at least in my hand.


Edited by corgicoupe, 19 June 2020 - 12:20.

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#51 AAAndrew

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Posted 20 June 2020 - 02:36

I read  that Esterbrook had dip pen nibs named for professions such as the "Judicial" nib and one for a barrister. Even the "Court House" nib. Also interesting is that Esterbrook referred to the nib as a pen. Or, it is listed this way in the much appreciated Esterbrook Project resource.

 

We know there were medical pens for doctors and nurses. 

 

Either these nib were that different or Esterbrook was savvy is appealing to the wide array of demographics and consumers of their heyday. 

 

The term "pen" has only meant the whole object from the end of the 19th-century. From the early 1800's until the 20th-century, you would write by dipping a pen (generally either a steel pen or a gold pen), held in a holder, into ink. Until very late in the 19th-century, anytime you used the term “pen” you meant just the metal part at the end of the holder. You would buy a box of steel pens or a gold pen to write with, and you would need a holder or “pen case” to hold it. The "nib" was just the tip of the "pen" often what we could call now the tines or even the tips of the tines. 

 

Esterbrook, along with all of the other steel pen makers, marketed many pens to specific occupations or uses. Generally, certain types of professions were assumed to want a specific kind of pen. Those who wrote a lot, like lawyers, chancellors, were assumed to need a stub pen which were made for rapid writing. Accountants were assumed to need stiff, fine pens as they were just writing numbers into ledgers, etc... 

 

Quick scan through all of the Esterbrooks, here are ones I pulled out as related to specific professions. I did not include "students" pens, and I may have missed a few. 

 

Congressional

Scholar

Senate Pen

Lawyers Pen

Chancellor Pen

Lawyers Pen

Probate Pen

Judge’s Quill

Secretary Pen

Attorneys Pen

Harrison & Bradfords Bookkeepers Pen

Accountant

Barrister’s Pen

Court House Pen

Counselor’s Pen

Judicial Pen

Cashier’s Pen

Poet’s Pen

Writing Masters Pen



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#52 Estycollector

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Posted 20 June 2020 - 09:23



 

The term "pen" has only meant the whole object from the end of the 19th-century. From the early 1800's until the 20th-century, you would write by dipping a pen (generally either a steel pen or a gold pen), held in a holder, into ink. Until very late in the 19th-century, anytime you used the term “pen” you meant just the metal part at the end of the holder. You would buy a box of steel pens or a gold pen to write with, and you would need a holder or “pen case” to hold it. The "nib" was just the tip of the "pen" often what we could call now the tines or even the tips of the tines. 

 

Esterbrook, along with all of the other steel pen makers, marketed many pens to specific occupations or uses. Generally, certain types of professions were assumed to want a specific kind of pen. Those who wrote a lot, like lawyers, chancellors, were assumed to need a stub pen which were made for rapid writing. Accountants were assumed to need stiff, fine pens as they were just writing numbers into ledgers, etc... 

 

Quick scan through all of the Esterbrooks, here are ones I pulled out as related to specific professions. I did not include "students" pens, and I may have missed a few. 

 

Congressional

Scholar

Senate Pen

Lawyers Pen

Chancellor Pen

Lawyers Pen

Probate Pen

Judge’s Quill

Secretary Pen

Attorneys Pen

Harrison & Bradfords Bookkeepers Pen

Accountant

Barrister’s Pen

Court House Pen

Counselor’s Pen

Judicial Pen

Cashier’s Pen

Poet’s Pen

Writing Masters Pen

 

First off, sorry for the numerous typos in my post that you are quoting. I try to be more careful.

 

Thank you, as always, for sharing your excellent knowledge or pen history and terms once used. I had never heard the holder referred to as a "case" before. If I remember, there were pen cases for travel or  a portable box where ink, the pen and holder were stored. I've read accounts of these being in use during the American Civil War. 

 

If is fascinating that Esterbrook made such a variety of nibs for specific professions whereas today we are less in need for a particular nib. For my use in letter writing I prefer the 048 Falcon. I am also amazed how much ink the underside of the pen holds making dipping less frequent. Again, always appreciate your input. 

 

fpn_1592644952__pen_anatomy.jpg


Edited by Estycollector, 20 June 2020 - 09:30.

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#53 corgicoupe

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Posted 20 June 2020 - 15:36

I just finished writing a short article with my 9314-M and I think that one has to be considered my favorite.  But I certainly won't set the others aside permanently.


Edited by corgicoupe, 20 June 2020 - 16:04.

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#54 AAAndrew

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Posted 21 June 2020 - 02:46

And for dip pens, you can use the image from my post on the anatomy of a steel pen. The only change I'd like to make to this image is that I've come around and now call the "hole" as the "pierce."  In a steel pen the pierce serves no real purpose except to keep the slit from continuing up the body of the pen, and perhaps add to the flexibility a small amount. There is no need to "breath" like in a fountain pen, so it's not a breather hole, and it holds so little ink, and often doesn't hold any without a massive dip that will almost certainly "glop" on you, so it's not a "reservoir." There's no need for a fancy name. It is a pierce in the body of the pen at the top of the slit, so that's what I call it. 

 

fpn_1592707088__anatomy-of-a-pen2.jpg



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#55 Runnin_Ute

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 03:48

I have the following:
9450
9550 (2)
1551
1555 Gregg (2)
Venus Fine
2464
9461

I thought I had a 9460 as well, but can't seem to locate it.

The 2464 (Manifold Broad) seems to get a lot of use. The 1555 Gregg gets a fair amount as well.

Currently the 9461 is not in a pen. Not sure why. Flat feeds in the 2464, the 9461 and Venus Fine. The rest are round. Most with grooves all the way across, the 1555 Gregg nibs without grooves along the center.

I also have 517 and 556 dip nibs.

Edited by Runnin_Ute, 22 June 2020 - 03:55.

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#56 Mannyonpil

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 08:37

I like several:

 

1314

1550

2048

2442

2314-F

2314-M

2550

2668

3550

8440

8550

9550

English 14k gold "relief" nibs

English sunburst steel "relief" nibs

 

But right now it is the 1314 that is rocking my world. It has come to be my favorite, alongside the gold relief nibs.



#57 Biber

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 14:23

9550 and 9128 are the gold standard for me, though I enjoyed the 9556 when I had one. The 9556, I felt, had stub-like qualities to it so it had some character to it. I'd be interested to try a 1xxx or 2xxx series nib to see if they're rolled tip offer any architect nib like qualities.  


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#58 Gloucesterman

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 23:18

So many good ones, IMO. Just bought a set of LJ fountain pen and pencil on the Bay. Based on the nib image I saw I thought I was buying a "2048" which would have been acceptable. I was VERY happy when the package arrived as the fountain pen did not need a new sac (which I thought it would and the nib turned out to be a 9048.

 

Over the years I have accumulated many Esterbrook pens and nibs including 9128 (3 or 4), 9788 only one I think and 9048s - 3 or 4. Have a bunch more including some 2xxxs and some other 9xxxs. At sometime in the future I will probably start to sell them off (or trade for something) here on FPN. I find that they are appreciating in value. Several of these, particularly the 9128 and 9788, are selling for more than $50.00 on the Bay. And that is just the nib (sometimes used) without the pen.

 

Just checked and someone wants $120.00 for a "J" with a 9048. and just a NOS 9048 for $85.00. I know that is their posted price and don't know if they actually sell for that amount.


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#59 Estycollector

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Posted 02 August 2020 - 18:13

I forgot I have a 2788 (flexible medium). I inked up the "transitional" and have been using this weekend. 


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