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Could this Sonnet nib be italic? Or customized? Or is it just me?


E.H. Tersono
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I recently bought my first Parker Sonnet, a used 1993 with a nib described as "springy and writes smoothly" and I was surprised to find that while it is indeed springy it's also very scratchy. I was surprised to find that my LAMY safaris and Kaweco sports are so much smoother and much more pleasant to write with. Is it me? Or the pen?

 

It was sold as a medium nib, and it's marked "M" but I wonder if it isn't actually some kind of italic? Or if perhaps it's been ground down to this? Or is this normal for a Sonnet?

 

My eyesight is quite bad which makes it hard to really deal with the details of nibs beyond others descriptions of them and my experience writing with them. But it looks strangely square to me, and it writes like that also. If I draw a line straight down it's thick, and if I draw across it's thin. I'm enclosing photos of the nib from the seller, they're better than anything I could take myself (though I know they aren't as high resolution as would be ideal). And some images of the lines and writing produced by the pen, using Pilot Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo on Rhodia 16, with the nib also visible there.

 

I truly appreciate your help, advice, and thoughts about this nib. I'm a real beginner in this area, so my apologies for anything obvious that I might be missing. Thank you.

IMG_5877.JPG

Sonnet back.jpg

Sonnet front.jpg

See my PIF post for free ink (Canada).

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Could you please post some photos of the rest of the pen?

The clip and cap marking especially.

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The nib size is stamped on the bottom of the feed.

I am more interested in the rest of the pen. The photos of the nib look a bit odd to me and I'm trying to place the generation of sonnet.

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6 hours ago, thx1138 said:

The nib size is stamped on the bottom of the feed.

I am more interested in the rest of the pen. The photos of the nib look a bit odd to me and I'm trying to place the generation of sonnet.

 

Hello, thank you so much for your help investigating this. It was listed as a "(1993) - Laque Moonbeam, Flexible 18k Medium Nib." Here are some more photos. The markings on the cap say: "Parker Sonnet France IIL"

sonnet_moonglow_18kflex_04.jpg

sonnet_moonglow_18kflex_01.jpg

See my PIF post for free ink (Canada).

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7 hours ago, Dione said:

The Sonnet nib was available as a broad italic and this could be one. It won't be noted anywhere else on the pen.

 

Thank you for this. It's very flexible, and seems wide to me - but I'm inexperienced with these.

See my PIF post for free ink (Canada).

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My Moonstone is oblique and marked as such. 
 

I have a Duofold of about that age with a factory “medium italic”(94). It’s actually quite wide. Its grind also doesn’t look like yours-it’s very thin front to back and is more of a CI if not a stub than a straight cut italic. I’m guessing that’s been ground outside the factory. 

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I have a couple of dozen Sonnets.  Italic and oblique nibs have "S" stamped on the feed.  "M" is medium.  Presumably stubs, italics and obliques were all stamped with "S".  All my italics, obliques and stubs are stamped with "S" on the feed.  I have right and left obliques, broad and fine italics and some nibs that appear to be stubby, all marked as "S" on the feed.

 

I collected these pens around 2010 or so, but was discouraged by the fakes.  I spent a good deal of time examining the pens I bought to make sure they were genuine, but then I thought it might be hard to sell them if I wanted to, so I quit buying Sonnets and just enjoyed the ones I had.  

"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, pajaro said:

I have a couple of dozen Sonnets.  Italic and oblique nibs have "S" stamped on the feed.  "M" is medium.  Presumably stubs, italics and obliques were all stamped with "S".  All my italics, obliques and stubs are stamped with "S" on the feed.  I have right and left obliques, broad and fine italics and some nibs that appear to be stubby, all marked as "S" on the feed.

 

I collected these pens around 2010 or so, but was discouraged by the fakes.  I spent a good deal of time examining the pens I bought to make sure they were genuine, but then I thought it might be hard to sell them if I wanted to, so I quit buying Sonnets and just enjoyed the ones I had.  

 

Thank you. I wondered if there was a chance the nib could have been ground, or even replaced onto the unit, since I imagine they come off - making a mismatch with the plastic base label. But perhaps that's uncommon.

 

Re: fakes - I was also thinking I might just like to get a replacement nib for this pen, but quickly ran into that same issue of whether what I'm finding online are real Sonnet nibs or fakes. The supply online of just replacement nibs, where I've looked anyway, seems to be dwindling.

See my PIF post for free ink (Canada).

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When I was looking for a Sonnet italic nib around 2010 I found few available, and that was also true of any other Sonnet nib units as well.  The prices back then were high.  I paid about $85 for a broad italic nib unit, and I bought from a pen seller in France.  Most of the pens I bought were secondhand, and seemed to come from estate sales.  Average cost then was about $50 for a Sonnet pen.  Most had fine or medium nibs, but I also found some with obliques and stubs or italics.

 

The nibs do come off of the feed.  These Sonnet nibs are easily bent, so you should be careful with them.  I have bent a few of them.  I got them to write again, but you can see that the nib had been bent and straightened.  

"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

 

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Sonnet "S" nibs (I believe the S stands for special (grind)) have a number code marked on the side of the feed to denote the nib type.
 

326321680_95nTSon7.thumb.JPG.5dbb792ef6de612dfb68e8afd106bff8.JPG

 

 

 

This can be seen when the nib is removed.

95 denotes broad italic.

 

1160307077_95nTSon9.JPG.8e804995865e800f4e902904e3a47ee2.JPG

 

 

The OP's nib looks to be a custom grind.

 

Paul.

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On 10/3/2021 at 12:56 PM, baz666 said:

Sonnet "S" nibs (I believe the S stands for special (grind)) have a number code marked on the side of the feed to denote the nib type.
 

326321680_95nTSon7.thumb.JPG.5dbb792ef6de612dfb68e8afd106bff8.JPG

 

 

 

This can be seen when the nib is removed.

95 denotes broad italic.

 

1160307077_95nTSon9.JPG.8e804995865e800f4e902904e3a47ee2.JPG

 

 

The OP's nib looks to be a custom grind.

 

Paul.

 

Thank you for this, really interesting and great to learn and helpful too. 

See my PIF post for free ink (Canada).

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I hadn't looked at my Sonnet in a little while, and indeed mine is marked "S" on the bottom of the feed and "88"(medium right oblique) on the side. I was confusing it with Duofolds and 75s where I usually see it on the bottom of the feed.

 

As a side note, it annoys me that Parker calls a "normal" oblique a "right" oblique. Everyone else calls a nib where, looking at the top, the left tine is shorter than the right tine, a left foot oblique...as I seem to recall reading somewhere, Parker calls it an "oblique for right handed writers" or wording to that effect, but at the same time plenty I've known of plenty of lefties who were happy with what's conventionally called a left-foot oblique.

 

 

IMG_0814.jpeg

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Mine has a 94. What grind is that? Is there a table of these numbers?

Baptiste knew how to make a short job long

For love of it. And yet not waste time either.

Robert Frost

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6 minutes ago, corgicoupe said:

Is there a table of these numbers?

 

Yes, there is. I've seen one before, when I was mired in an ultimately unfruitful saga of trying to get Parker to deliver a fit-for-purpose nib for my Duofold Centennial through its nominally free Nib Exchange Programme.

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; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct for valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

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29 minutes ago, corgicoupe said:

But the one discrepancy is that my nib is 18k

 

It is that table I saw. The reader or user needs to keep in mind, however, that it is not published by Parker and not an authoritative reference.

 

If you look at the disclaimer at the bottom of the page at http://parkerpens.net/index.shtml, you'll see that there is no claim that Parker provided, reviewed or approved the information. The company's official contribution to the site is granting permission to the site owner to use Parker's logo and images.

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; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct for valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

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