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Do Sailor Soft Nibs Even Exist?


CXC

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I'm loving my new Sailor Pro Gear <H-M>.  So now of course I am curious about Sailor pens with <S-M>.  But I can't find them for sale anywhere.  Do they even exist?  21k?  Which models? Maybe as a replacement nib?

AKA Ichiro Fakename

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Usually found on older or vintage models, used to be available on regular models like the 1911 (Standard/Large) or Pro Gear (Slim/"Regular").

 

Now I don't know, because I don't pay attention to the more expensive lines (i.e. anything above 1911 Large/Pro Gear), so maybe they are still available in that price class.

 

They are not easy to find.

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16 minutes ago, CXC said:

Do they even exist?

 

Sure. That doesn't require their being either findable or buyable (by you or me) to establish.

 

 

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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21 K Sailor nibs are reputed to be 'mushy' and bend easy and stay that way.

Outside of that, I'm totally ignorant of Japanese pens....The only one I ever had was a nail Sheaffer which I sold.

That and the Pilot 'soft' is a regular flex nib like the Pelikan 200.

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.

RIP...200's once great nib, now a double ball.:crybaby::wallbash:

 

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

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Bo Bo Olson said:

21 K Sailor nibs are reputed to be 'mushy'

 

I only have one.  A H-MF in a Professional Gear. Most definitely not mushy.

"Simplicate and add Lightness."

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6 hours ago, Bo Bo Olson said:

21 K Sailor nibs are reputed to be 'mushy' and bend easy and stay that way.

Not in my experience having 4 21K nibs.   They are quite firm and definitely not inviting attempting flex.

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Good to know...info from here had said mushy....hard to be mushy if a nail.

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.

RIP...200's once great nib, now a double ball.:crybaby::wallbash:

 

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

 

 

 

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I have a S-F in a 1911 Standard (Profit? I don't keep track of the model names...). It is harder than any of my other soft Japanese nibs. While it is distinctly softer than my regular F on a more contemporary example of the same pen and gives a little different tactile feel on the page, it's not a big difference. Not much line width variation but I haven't really pushed it to do that as I have better pens for that purpose - it doesn't seem like the right pen for that. 

 

I was interested in a Sailor S-F and, when one became available at a good price, I jumped on it. I was a little disappointed with the softness of the nib and I won't seek out another one. (But I have no regrets because it's still a great nib and a great pen, overall.)

 

All that said, I have heard that some examples of the same nib are significantly softer than others. 

Script nib for writing screenplays. • Fine nib for my best writing. • Extra fine for my *very* best writing. • Medium for requesting a séance. • Bold for adventure stories. • Manifold for many various types of writing. • Coarse for indignant letters. • Oblique for making a point in a roundabout way. • Italic when I'm inclined. • Stub for when I intend to leave a manuscript unfinis

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/7/2021 at 9:09 AM, CXC said:

Maybe as a replacement nib?

 

Sailor doesn't ‘do’ loose/ spare/ replacement nibs (or nib units) for users to readily fit (possibly) different nib width grades or types onto pen bodies they already own, ever — as far as I'm aware! I hope the company (and other Japanese brands) stay true to their philosophy of selling complete, fine-tuned writing instruments, and not kits for customers to mix and match parts to achieve versatility or flexibility at reduced cost (compared to getting one unit of each pen factory-fitted with the type of nib desired for a particular application or use case).

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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OK I've given up on "S-M". What about "non-hard"?  Is there an "M" distinct from my "H-M"?  At this point I'm just idly curious...

AKA Ichiro Fakename

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In this review the Sailor King of Pen is described as having a softer nib than the nibs fitted in other Sailor models.

The writing demonstration (of some looped curves) does give an indication of what "soft" means here.

Available in medium and broad tip sizes only. 

 

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I have two King of Pens (Kings of Pen?) with 21 k nibs.  One is medium, the other medium reground to something slightly finer.  The medium is lusciously soft--not mushy, not flexy, not semiflexy, but soft.  The slightly finer medium is soft (also not mushy, flexy, semiflexy, etc.) but somewhat less so.  You wouldn't know they were soft from the look of my handwriting, just as you can't know any other nib is soft by the look of the writing; the softness is in how the pen feels in writing with it.

 

So yes, Sailor does make some soft nibs.

 

Soft =/= flexy.

 

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Wow, I don't know whether you guys are writing with rather firm pressure? I find all of my KOPs extremely stiff and have no softness, flex or any even remotely bendy nature at all. However I don't try and flex any of my nibs unless they are designed to be flexed.

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No, gerigo; I have a light hand in writing and never exert pressure to flex any of my nibs.  (My Scribo 14k nib that everybody says is so flexy is utterly wasted on me.)

 

That your KOP nibs feel so different from mine comes as a surprise to me.

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  • 2 months later...

This morning I missed out on a used Sailor 1911S with a S-F nib at Anderson Pens.  I saw it, but foolishly delayed purchase for an hour as I debated internally whether it was worth $175 to me.  During which time somebody else bought it.  What an idiot.1658298478_ScreenShot2022-03-25at3_22_35PM.png.830f514a45b5e5e6d48d79a2d1fed55f.png

AKA Ichiro Fakename

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/25/2022 at 6:27 PM, CXC said:

This morning I missed out on a used Sailor 1911S with a S-F nib at Anderson Pens.  I saw it, but foolishly delayed purchase for an hour as I debated internally whether it was worth $175 to me.  During which time somebody else bought it.  What an idiot.1658298478_ScreenShot2022-03-25at3_22_35PM.png.830f514a45b5e5e6d48d79a2d1fed55f.png

 

Its worthwhile keeping an eye out for these pens from japanese sellers on ebay.  Occasionally, an S-type sailor nib will pop up, usually for much less than $175!  I'd recommend keeping an eye out for generic Sailor 1911s listings, as some will have the S type nib, but not include that in the listing (but you can see the nib grade in the pictures). These will go for less than listings that specifically advertise the nib grade. 

In my experience, the S- nibs (I have an S-B) are not really that soft - the SF or SM nibs on a Pilot Custom 91 or 74 are actually much softer/bouncier.  On the Tokyo Inklings podcast, the hosts described having a conversation with Yukio Nagahara, where he mentioned that the 'S' actually referred to an alloy formulation for the nib, and not necessarily the softness of the nib.  

-h

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  • 2 weeks later...

for starters, I only own a few modern gold Sailor nibs, but in my small sample the sole 21k (H-F) nib is bouncier and softer on the page than either of my 14k nibs (H-F and H-M).

don't mistake "soft" for flexible... sometimes they coexist, but not always. both of my modern Pilot soft nibs (SF Elabo and SM Custom Heritage 91) have enough flex to actually show it to advantage when writing with a slightly heavy hand, but neither comes close to vintage flex, let alone wet-noodle levels of flex. what all of the Japanese soft nibs I own *do* offer is a bouncier and (sorry) softer page feel as compared to a rigid nib.

 

What characteristic are you seeking in a "soft" nib? ...or is it just to try one and see if it's a type that you like?

David-

 

So many restoration projects...

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On 12/7/2021 at 11:56 AM, Karmachanic said:

 

I only have one.  A H-MF in a Professional Gear. Most definitely not mushy.

^Seconded.  Sailor= not-mushy

Festina lente

Optimism kills

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On 4/22/2022 at 9:32 PM, awa54 said:

What characteristic are you seeking in a "soft" nib? ...or is it just to try one and see if it's a type that you like?

Actually I am very happy with my nice, precise, stiff Sailor nibs.  It is simply out of a combination of curiosity, and being a Sailor accumulator, that I'd like to try a soft Sailor nib.  And as a certified Sailor Boi, I have hope that in some new way it would be useful or pleasant for me.

AKA Ichiro Fakename

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