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Pilot Vanishing Point - 14K Vs 18K Nibs

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I have a question for those of you who have a longer history with the Pilot Vanishing Point - please excuse me if I'm posting this in the wrong place!


I bought a matte black Pilot Vanishing Point sometime last year (back when the Australian dollar was worth something :bawl: ), with a black-coated gold Fine nib. The pen wrote really smoothly, but laid a finer, drier line than is my preference.


To cut a long story short, the pen took a 'nosedive' off my son's lap about a month ago, and landed nib first on a wooden floor. The two Aussie nib technicians I've spoken to feel it wouldn't be worth my while (in terms of cost) to repair the nib, so I'm looking a replacing it.


So here's the question: I can buy a replacement nib (with converter) for around US$60 plus postage - that's an 18K nib, black or rhodium coated. Or I can buy a older-style 14K nib (no converter) from Anderson Pens for $50. Is it worth the cost saving, if I don't mind my matte black pen having a gold coloured nib?


The 14K nibs are only available in F or B - I'd probably buy the F if I head down this direction, but am wondering: is there a significant difference between the 14K and 18K fine in terms of smoothness, wetness, line width, performance that might favour one over the other? If you've written with both, do you have a preference for one or the other - and if so, why?


I know the 14K nibs were designed for the US / European (?) market - and that they've now been discontinued. Beyond that I'm completely in the dark. Any help / advice / information that might help me make a decision would be very much appreciated.

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