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Noodler's Vs Twisby For Sketching / Lineart


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(( Please feel free to guide me to a different post if necessary, I'm an FPN forum newbie C': ))


So here's my dilemma, I have no way of trying any of the aforementioned pens. So I hope based on my preferences you guys can guide me to what you think would be best for me.


I currently own only two pens, a Lamy Safari and a Pilot Metropolitan. I love how lightweight the lamy is, but definitely prefer that gelpen-like feel the metropolitan provides as well as the size, the lamy sometimes feels like a large pen in my hand regardless of the weight, and took a bit of getting used to. I use both pens for writing, however, have decided to add a third one for sketching, and sometimes doing the lineart on my drawings.


I should mention now that I do not get along with dip pens, I tried them and hate the scratchiness and the constant dipping on the ink bottle (also having to travel with an ink bottle). This is why I'm resorting to fountain pens, I love writing with them, and that super smooth feel. Which brings me to what I think are my affordable options in that regard.

Noddler's Nib Creaper
Noodler's Konrad
Noodler's Ahab
Twisby Eco


I'm mostly considering Noodler's because of the flex nibs that would help me provide a bit of line weight to my drawings.
However, the Eco with a fine nib, would give me a have large ink capacity and I know will work right out of the box, unlike Noodler's which I've read can have some issues :/.

Also consider that I would mostly be using permanent inks on these, do any of these pens work better or are known to have issues with permanent inks?

I'm really confused as to what to choose, I've been taking pens in and out of my cart for a week. Mostly because regardless of my choice, for now I can only afford one.


Or do you have any other recommendations around that price range?

Thanks for reading through all of that! I hope you can help me!

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Well, it can take a while for the Noodler's nib to soften up enough to give you any or much flex (that's what I've found), and you will have to be patient with Noodler's. I bought one when I was first getting into pens and was pretty disappointed, though now (after 4 or 5 years), I am enjoying my Konrad. If you were going to use permanent inks in them (I'm supposing you mean iron gall), you might start with the cheapie Noodler's Creaper or the Ahab. The Creaper is a small pen--I don't know what the size of your hand is, but you definitely want to look at measurements.


The inside barrel of the TWSBI might stain with some inks, so you will need to think about whether that will bother you or not.


Whether you will have a super smooth nib or not is not guaranteed by the brand. I have found that to some extent, it's a gamble. A lot of people learn to tune their own nibs because pens can write differently.


I think you will get a smoother writing experience from the Eco than the Noodler's, but that's just my experience.


Why not just do drawings with the Pilot Metropolitan, if you like it? Or try the Pilot Kakuno. You can't get much cheaper than that--it's a lighter weight pen. Ignore the fact they are made with children in mind. They write just fine. They have the same nibs in them as the Metro. You can use cartridges or get a converter for it.


I hope this helps.

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Owning three Noodler's pens, I can say they worked out of the box for me. I know people have said soak it first to clean it, which isn't bad advice, but I have not needed to.


Not owning a TWSBI yet, I can't speak for those. But I can speak lots for Noodler's. The Ahab is a good choice. Here's another to consider even cheaper: Noodler's Standard Flex. Costs less than a Metro and has a flexible, albeit smallish nib. Has a built in converter, so ink capacity isn't the best at all, but the combination of flex and price might be what you want. I have a couple I use as test pens and they are perfect for what I want. The flex allows me to test shading and drying, the low cost makes me not fear damaging it (something I have not done with those pens yet, and I've been somewhat abusive to a couple of them).


For more Flex, go Ahab. Doesn't cost much more. And you can eyedropper that pen, giving it much more capacity than the TWSBI has.


As far as permenance, as long as you are willing to say "this ink MIGHT permenantly stain my pen and I am okay with that," then any pen will do. Another reason to go inexpensive with the standard flex.

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You might also like to consider a Platinum Carbon Desk pen as a sketching pen. It's designed to take pigmented Platinum carbon ink and has a really fine line.


I draw with my pens too. I like my TWSBI Eco very much - mine is a 1.1mm because I like the line variation I can get by changing the angle of the nib. I was disappointed with Noodler's pens because in my dry climate they evaporate the ink too quickly.



It's all about the greys...

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I didn't even know about either the standard flex or the kakuno existing. I found info on that pilot one, but where can I buy the standard flex? is that the old name of the nib creaper?


When talking about permanent inks I'm mostly referring to the De Atramentis document line, iron gall still scares me a bit, and from what I've read the document ink doesn't have those and is fine with watercolors on top.

And even though I love my metropolitan, the medium nib on both my current pens make it difficult to draw the small details I'm looking for, which is why I also considered for a while a change to an EF nib on my safari. I'd also like to take this chance to get my new pen as a demonstrator, so I have a good idea of how much ink I have available before I go out.

I didn't even know that the Platinum Carbon Desk pen existed either :'D, I was not considering the carbon ink precisely because I'd heard it was a bit difficult to handle.

Now I have a lot more options and am starting to feel a bit overwhelmed, haha!

And since you mentioned weather Amanda, I practically live in a desert :'3, think Texas-like weather, just in case that helps anyone else with suggestions.

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You're right. I always called the pen the Standard Flex, but it is also known as the "nib creaper." Didn't realize that until I checked.


I use the Carbon Black ink as well as the occasional permenant ink. Just like Baystate Blue, don't let these "horror stories" scare you, seriously. Just practice good pen maintenance and you'll be fine. If I had to choose between the carbon black and a permenant/bulletproof ink, I usually side on the Carbon. Entirely a personal preference as to the looks, not about what you are doing to the pen.


Remember, the pen is a tool. Use it until you cannot anymore then replace. It is how you are going to get the expression of your art onto a page. Treat it as such. Tools break. Get the pen that does the job for a good price. Use the ink that is the finest expression of your craft.


If you want a pen to last a lifetime and to hand down to heirs, then you go for a $100+ pen and treat it well with non-fussy inks. But to express yourself the way you want to: get what you need. Use it, replace it when necessary without giving it a second thought.

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Build quality and reliability is MUCH better than the Noodlers pens.

Getting a good reliable Noodler's is a roll of the dice. I lost 2x, so am not keen on those pens.

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


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+1 for XF Platinum Desk Pen and Carbon ink. No worries about the carbon ink in this pen because it was designed specifically for it. No special handling really needed with that combination and the price is excellent. The Kakuno is also quite good as a sketching pen. I also use Safari XF's with Noodler's Lexington Grey.


+1 for De Atramentis document inks as well. I love that they are also designed to mix and have a recipe for an ink near to Iro Kiri-Same only waterproof... great for line and then use Kiri-Same for washes. Lovely. The name I chose for it was Kimo-Sabe.



"Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working." -Pablo Picasso

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I can't speak of Noodler's, but I really don't like the grip section of the TWSBI Eco, although in all other respects, they're amazing pens. The grip section of course, is personal preference. I found it weird and fiddly and hard to hold and too skinny. Others love it.


If you like the Safari, you're more likely to like the TWSBI I'd imagine, as they appear similar.


It's no fault with the pen, just something to consider.

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