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There is no flex whatsoever in those zoom nibs, neither in the smaller 14k nor in the 21k version.

 

What does make it "flexible" though (or rather: makes your use of it flexible and full of variance) is the fact that you are able to achieve different line-widths by varying the angle you are holding the pen. Holding it at a lower angle gives you a broad-double broad line, that becomes slimmer the steeper your writing angle becomes. A well tuned zoom nib also writes perfectly on the upside, mostly with an extra fine-fine nib.

 

The nib itself is stiff, maybe even "stiff as a nail".

 

Edited to add: We are talking about Sailor's zoom nibs here, aren't we?

Edited by JulieParadise
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Presuming Sailor nib...

 

Visualize the tipping (looking down from the top) as a triangle

 

When the pen is held relatively flat to the paper, the wide base of the

 

If one has the classical rigid-wrist, whole-arm writing technique, one will not see much variation with a Zoom nib, as one likely also has a static pen angle to the paper. If one has a static arm and lots of wrist flexing, one may see wide lines at the tops of letters (when the pen is flatter to reach) and narrow lines at the bottoms (when the pen is pulled back and vertical).

 

With lots of slow motions, one might be able to emulate pressure-based flex effects ("copperplate"/"spencerian") by tilting the pen up for thin strokes and flattening it for broad strokes. Though that is going to make for a very deliberate and strange means of drawing letters (can't really call it writing).

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I understand: thank you, people! Danke sehr, Julie.

 

I cannot for the life of me imagine having to change my writing angle all the time...it sounds like an awful lot of bother! Certainly not for me, then...am most grateful. Now I can scratch out one more apparent temptation from my casual list of intrigues...

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I'll admit that I wasn't sure I would be able to get used to it either when I got a Pro-Gear Slim (when the red one came out a while back I looked around and discovered that the Purple Cosmos was still available -- I had been holding off because I couldn't justify the extra cost of it being an LE model). I had a choice of nibs available, and just to be different from what other pens I had I was trying to choose between a zoom nib and one of Sailor's music nibs. I elicited a bunch of input from people on here, and then it turned out a friend of mine who specifically collects Sailor pens had something with a zoom nib on it, so I was able to play around with it some to see whether I could used to the changes in angle. I was less worried about writing than I was for doing drawing.

I do like the zoom nib, and am happy I went with that rather than the music nib (which isn't a true 3-tined music nib but some sort of stub) but find it on the dry side.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

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For me it is a playing nib. With a bit of concentrating I write or doodle with certain line widths at vertain angles, the fine top (when holding the pen upside down) for me _is_ usable for longer writing, even several pages, so if you find yourself being a "disciplined" writer in the sense of consciously controlling the way you hold a pen, then a zoom nib is a heck lot of fun, at least 2, if not 3 nibs all in one pen, broad, medium, fine on the upside. I love my zoom nibs and use them a lot.

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For western hands, it's a gimmicky double broad. You won't ever see line variation in normal handwriting.

 

But for asian or hebrew writing, where you hold the pen practically perpendicular, you will actually see lots of expression as your fingertips swipe from about a 75 degree to about a 90 degree angle on larger handwriting

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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... a zoom nib is a heck lot of fun, at least 2, if not 3 nibs all in one pen, broad, medium, fine on the upside. I love my zoom nibs and use them a lot.

Have you tried playing with a Naginata Concord (NK) nib? I dont mind the Zoom nib, but the NK nib has greater range in comparison, and I think I prefer being able to hold my pen in normal orientation when doing longer writing.

As always:  1. Implicit in everything and every instance I write on FPN is the invitation for you to judge me as a peer in the community. I think it's only due respect to take each other's written word in online discussion seriously and apply critical judgment.  2. I do not presume to judge for you what is right, correct or valid. If I make a claim, or refute a statement in a thread, and link to references and other information in support, I beseech you to review and consider those, and judge for yourself. I may be wrong. My position or say-so carries no more weight than anyone else's here, and external parties can speak for themselves with what they have published.  3. I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable. If it is something you can test for yourself and see the results, I entreat you to do so.

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Yes, but don't the NK nibs only come on much larger and more expensive pens? :(

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

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@inkstainedruth Yes, especially if you want to buy brand new these days, after Sailor doubled the prices of the pens fitted with Naginata specialty nibs last year.

As always:  1. Implicit in everything and every instance I write on FPN is the invitation for you to judge me as a peer in the community. I think it's only due respect to take each other's written word in online discussion seriously and apply critical judgment.  2. I do not presume to judge for you what is right, correct or valid. If I make a claim, or refute a statement in a thread, and link to references and other information in support, I beseech you to review and consider those, and judge for yourself. I may be wrong. My position or say-so carries no more weight than anyone else's here, and external parties can speak for themselves with what they have published.  3. I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable. If it is something you can test for yourself and see the results, I entreat you to do so.

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Have you tried playing with a Naginata Concord (NK) nib? I dont mind the Zoom nib, but the NK nib has greater range in comparison, and I think I prefer being able to hold my pen in normal orientation when doing longer writing.

 

Yes, I did, but the zoom is available for ca. 100€ with a standard model (I prefer the smaller bodies) so there is no hassle getting one of those. Maybe if I have more time to investigate & hunt I'll consider getting a "more special" specialty nib. :)

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