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Ode To An Ordinary, Lovely Gold Nib



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In the last few months I have been using mostly pens with either Jowo or Bock steel nibs. I tend to prefer M or B nibs, although I do also stretch to F and stubs.

Although F nibs are not my first choice except for fine notes, both Jowo and Bock F nibs are still enjoyable for me, as they are sufficiently smooth. I have a few Jowo 1.1 stubs, and although they are not bad either, I usually do have a preference for stubs with tipping.

All in all both these brands make enjoyably smooth steel nibs in the F to stub range, which I do like using, and have several different pens which mount these.

 

After a period of rotation over a few months of several different pens with Jowo/Bock steel nibs, last week I picked up a Bexley with a 14k gold nib, size M.

The Bexley is an Equipose in a rather unusual green colour (called Colorado Green).

 

Besides the unusual colour, the Bexley Equipose is quite a classic looking pen (with converter system).

The design is classic cap over barrel, with no step-down barrel to section (which I find so annoying due to the way I hold my pens high up).
The threads are smooth and the size of the pen is big enough to be very comfortable uncapped (I almost never post).

fpn_1544983790__p1160656-3__bexley_eqipo

 

After a long period of use of steel nibs, what does however strike me immediately on putting this pen/nib back to paper is the different way it writes.

Ever so soft!
It's not a matter of being smooth, it's not a matter of flex either (I don't usually look for flex when writing, although I can recognize flex/semiflex nibs), it's just much more relaxed and natural in a way. I don't feel as though I have to push, while I do somewhat with steel nibs, in comparison.

 

This nib is no doubt lovely (14k M) and I had forgotten how much more enjoyable it is writing with it, compared to a group of various Jowo/Bock steel nibs (including some mounted on more recent Bexleys I own).

 

The difference is subtle, but it's there absolutely!

I'm not starting the steel vs gold topic again, I know, I do have a few gold nibs that are not so different from the a/m group of steel nibs in the way they behave...

It's probably just that this is a heck of a lovely nib!

Edited by sansenri
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  • Bo Bo Olson

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  • sansenri

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  • tinta

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  • Honeybadgers

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well if it suites you, then its all for the better. By their nature, gold nib tend to be softer, mind that not exactly flex or springy which might or might not be there. One thing I've found using various gold , steel , and nibs of other materials ( Titanium, Pt ... ) is that the Karat count or whether its gold or steel really do not reflect always how smooth, how soft, how springy, and how flexy the nib is. I've had 18K gold nib that is nail hard, and I've had nibs which should suggest otherwise feel softer than what its material might suggest.

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That is lovely "sansenri" (sorry, I misspelled your name in another reply on another thread),...enjoy that lovely Bexley. Perhaps you could post a writing sample?

tinta

Edited by tinta

*Sailor 1911S, Black/gold, 14k. 0.8 mm. stub(JM) *1911S blue "Colours", 14k. H-B "M" BLS (PB)

*2 Sailor 1911S Burgundy/gold: 14k. 0.6 mm. "round-nosed" CI (MM) & 14k. 1.1 mm. CI (JM)

*Sailor Pro-Gear Slim Spec. Ed. "Fire",14k. (factory) "H-B"

*Kaweco SPECIAL FP: 14k. "B",-0.6 mm BLS & 14k."M" 0.4 mm. BLS (PB)

*Kaweco Stainless Steel Lilliput, 14k. "M" -0.7 mm.BLS, (PB)

 

 

 

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My only bexley nib was the 18k stub and it was an ENORMOUS disappointment. had to replace it three times because they were unusable (hard starting every other downstroke is unacceptable) and even my last received one was unusable, so I gave up on making vanness go through the effort. I'll just get it ground.

 

But I have heard since that their stubs had a bad batch and the rest of their nibs were fine. if mine were an EF I'd have been over the moon with its softness and flex.

Selling a boatload of restored, fairly rare, vintage Japanese gold nib pens, click here to see (more added as I finish restoring them)

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well if it suites you, then its all for the better. By their nature :bunny01: , gold nib tend to be softer, mind that not exactly flex or springy which might or might not be there. One thing I've found using various gold , steel , and nibs of other materials ( Titanium, Pt ... ) is that the Karat count or whether its gold or steel really do not reflect always how smooth, how soft, how springy, and how flexy the nib is. I've had 18K gold nib that is nail hard, and I've had nibs which should suggest otherwise feel softer than what its material might suggest.

It's the alloy only.....nature has nothing to do with it..pure and simple........I do have an 18 K gold nail & 14 K Pelikan D nib as hard steel.

 

I really don't believe in the Gold is softer myth............I believe someone is comparing a gold semi-nail to a steel nail............or even a now rare 'regular flex' to a stiffer nib.

The rest has been deleted in it has been covered before in other gold is softer threads.

It may be that gold is a softer metal....pure.

But right now someone has just invented a gold-platinum mix that is the hardest metal compound out there, by far.

All nibs are made of alloy's, even stainless steel nibs are alloys of some sort, designed/alloy chosen to do what is wished. ...is springy, nail or what ever else is wanted.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Bo Bo I do agree with what you say mostly, that some gold nibs are as hard as some steel ones and that some steel nibs are softer than gold ones (think Pelikan M200) and that some steel nibs can even be flex (some calligraphy nibs for dip pens are actually steel, I also have an Osmia which has a steel nib which is really flex).

 

What strikes me though is that I have quite a bunch of pens with modern Jowo, and Bock nibs and none of them compares to this one, which is not really flex but certainly springy in a very pleasant way. And here I don't think there is even the excuse of this being a vintage nib, this Bexley isn't really vintage.

I was just noting that none of the modern steel nibs I have match the pleasantness of this one.

 

In fact I was actually praising THIS nib, which was probably produced for Bexley by Bock anyway...

It's a pity Bexley stopped offering them on their pens.

 

Peyton street had this pen on sale some time ago and described the nib as

"MEDIUM Bexley 14k gold nib is very smooth with a little springyness to it and lovely tipping."

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Modern....are on the whole stiffer nibs than earlier eras, less repair. Harder to turn a nail into a pretzel...but one does read sad stories of pens lent and pretzels returned. Jack Hammer Fisted Ball Point Barbarians....are walking like they are not zombies.

 

I like semi-flex nibs, be they steel or gold and have some of both that are totally =. but that was another era, another steel, another gold alloy than today's. All but one or two semi-flex nibs I have clump very close together, no matter what brand.

Maxi-semi-flex has a bit more variance, if one looks for it hard enough, and all will and do....Which is softest/tad more flexible.

 

I consider a 200 to be a regular flex nib, not a 'soft' one. But if one is coming from stiffer nibs....yes it is soft. It is that the term regular flex is outside of me seldom mentioned any more. It was once regular issue, like a nail is regular issue today.

 

That could well be that many who landed in Vintage US pens, didn't know the term regular flex having started with nails....or even vintage nails....from Parker... mostly nails....Sheaffer some nails, some regular flex....rare vintage '50's semi-flex.

 

I grew up with regular flex, school pens and Parker nails...and the P-75 a semi-nail....not that I knew anything about that until decades later. It was 'softer' than a P-51. We were incredibly ignorant of pens back in the day.....Clean a Pen???? :unsure:...why and that became even worse with cartridges. Of course one ended up 'mixing' ink....no one had discovered the rubber syringe bulb.....nor a reason to use one. Clean a Pen :lticaptd: .

 

Sheaffer had rare '50's semi-flex, to go with regular flex and nail. I guess I got to go over to the Sheaffer subsection to find out which models were often regular flex.........could be some of the Sheaffer under brands. There was a real beautiful Carmine one I couldn't quite afford, that I think was regular flex..............before I was really into regular flex. I had to detour into semi-flex to like the shading ability of a nice springy regular flex. I did get a maxi-semi-flex Snorkel BB factory stub, from Australia.....Like in England, there Sheaffer had to match Swan, so had nibs with some flex.

Also wanted before my Snorkel a President, Ambassador, Saratoga or something extra fancy to go with the semi-flex nib..........................of course I wanted it cheap. B) ....no wonder I ended up with a plain maroon Australian one.

 

 

For me semi-flex came many decades later, when I returned to fountain pens and heard about them :puddle: here.

 

I don't know....I don't really consider regular flex 'soft', but one coming in from nails would. A semi-flex would then be 'soft++' because it is springy ++.

 

I still get no answer to if Japanese 'soft' nibs are regular flex or not............. it appears regular flex has become as scarce as Indian Head Pennies......which back in B&W TV days were still around.

 

There are some Esterbrook regular flex nibs, and many of the Wearever....It's just I don't know Sheaffer.............to say look at this, look at that....compare.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

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