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Nib Stone



MagisterPerotinus

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MagisterPerotinus

I briefly looked for a search function, but couldn't find it, so I'll post a new thread, which as I understand it is a forum no-no.

I found a tool today at my favorite thrift shop. It's a wooden box containing an extremely fine whetstone. This whetstone had a shallow trough (presumably for water) and was coated in ink. I took it home and rinsed it off (the ink was water-soluble, good sign). I feel like I read somewhere about "nib stones" that were used to hone down fountain pen nibs. When I tried to Google it, I came up empty handed.

 

Has anyone come across this type of artifact? Is it really used for smoothing FP nibs, or is it more likely used for shaping calligraphy nibs on dip pens?

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Never head of a "nib stone" per se, though I have occasionally seen folks asking about the use of a whetstone for shaping (though not smoothing) fountain pen nibs, which in my opinion is not a very good idea, though others may differ. Calligraphy nibs for dip pens are generally chosen with a suitable tip shape; there would be little need to alter a dip pen nib.

 

--Daniel

"The greatest mental derangement is to believe things because we want them to be true, not because we observe that they are in effect." --Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

Daniel Kirchheimer
Specialty Pen Restoration
Authorized Sheaffer/Parker/Waterman Vintage Repair Center
Purveyor of the iCroScope digital loupe

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I'm taking a wild guess without seeing it-- I think it is a stone for grinding ink sticks. This kind of thing is often used with brushes for Chinese and Japanese calligraphy.

"It's funny; in this era of email and voice mail and all those things that I did not even grow up with, a plain old paper letter takes on amazing intimacy."  Elizabeth Kostova

 

 

 

 

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I'm taking a wild guess without seeing it-- I think it is a stone for grinding ink sticks. This kind of thing is often used with brushes for Chinese and Japanese calligraphy.

 

Good call -- those have a well for liquid.

 

--Daniel

"The greatest mental derangement is to believe things because we want them to be true, not because we observe that they are in effect." --Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

Daniel Kirchheimer
Specialty Pen Restoration
Authorized Sheaffer/Parker/Waterman Vintage Repair Center
Purveyor of the iCroScope digital loupe

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MagisterPerotinus

I attached a picture of the thing.

 

I think that there's a very good chance that OCArt is 100% correct in figuring out what this thing is without seeing it. A+, my man. The design of the box screams "Japan." The stone is a much finer grit than the 1500 sandpaper I have, so maybe I'll try it on a cheap pen just in the name of science. I have a Goulet kit coming in the mail in the next few days, so if I rough-up my nib, I'll be able to smooth it back out in a couple days.

 

Thanks, folks!

post-130091-0-11136000-1463961086_thumb.jpg

Edited by MagisterPerotinus
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MagisterPerotinus

After a couple minutes' thought, I decided I'm not going to put a nib to this thing. I don't know what it's made of, and if I scratch it, it'll be ruined. Maybe some day I'll get into Asian calligraphy, and I'll want a nice smooth surface on which to whip up some ink. Thanks, everyone!

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What you have is a stone for grinding Chinese/Japanese ink sticks. You add a bit of water and grind the solid block of ink to produce the ink mixture used in Asian painting and calligraphy. For more info have a look here.

Edited by Ashram

http://i.imgur.com/Bftqofd.png

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Yes it is used for stick ink, NOT for grinding a nib.

You will likely mar the smooth finish by trying to grind a nib with it.

Edited by ac12

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com

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Here's one I saw in Beijing, for really large inksticks.

 

 

post-1741-0-85531100-1464030388_thumb.jpg

These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value.--Thomas Paine, "The American Crisis", 1776

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That would need a couple apprentices working baseball bat size ink sticks.

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com

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MagisterPerotinus

Dr.Grace, absolutely beautiful!

 

AC12, 100%. I'm glad I came to FPN to find out what this stone is for before I scratched it all up trying to grind a nib on it.

 

I got my Goulet kit in the mail today, and ground-and-smoothed my Ahab non-flex nib, which had start-up issues. It's buttery-smooth now, with no start-up problems. It was my first proper nib-tuning-type activity, and with such a stark difference in pen-performance, I'm totally exhilarated.

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