Trees And Plants- Nib Try-outs

I’ve spent the last three mornings “test driving” a variety of dip pen nibs. There are quite a few nibs intended for drawing, but most were made just for writing. Some are very fine, some make a heavier line, others are monoline or do both thick and thin lines. Most are not expensive, one to three dollars each. The highly sought after and rare ones, however, can go for up to ten dollars each and maybe a bit more.

I’ll be going more in depth on nib types in future posts- how good I’ve found them for drawing and sources for them, but for now I just want to post a “portfolio” of what I’ve just done, all from my own reference photos. I used Noodler’s Black ink on Strathmore 300 vellum bristol.

All of them are approximately 4×5″ or a little bigger. I converted the scans to black and white for optimal image quality.

Perry & Co. 1601 EF (extra fine); I like this one, but need to work with it some more. I think the nib needs a breaking in period for the line weight to be consistent.
Hunt Artist 100; not quite the Ferrari of nibs, but it requires a light touch and good motor control. that said, it has a great feel to it.
Yaroslawl Orgtechika #3 (This is an old USSR nib purchased from a seller in Ukraine. If you look at the middle of the nib you can see the hammer and sickle)
Brandauer Celebrated Gilt J 251; it actually is golden gilt, which doesn’t show in the black and white versions I’ve posted. Definitely will have a use for it with larger drawings.
Esterbrook Radio #988; called “Radio” because they are a version of their nib line that is nickleoid plated for longer wear.
Myers & Son Post Office Pen; nibs were made for just about every commerical specialty, so this one really was intended for use in post offices. I bought a box of them for next to nothing.
Esterbrook Jackson Stub; the stub nib design, just slightly straight instead of pointed was to imitate how a feather quill would write. Just about every manufacturer had a stub in their line. The body, called the falcon, was the most popular style ever, also something everyone needed in their product line.
Esterbrook Radio #956; Another nib that was not designed for artists but works quite well for drawing.
Blanzy-Poure ‘Corricolo’ #547; A French nib, fairly stiff compared to flexible ones like the Hunt 100. Not sure about this one for drawing yet, but will take it for another spin.

So there you have ten quite different nibs from four countries: the USA, England, France and the old USSR (Brandauer was an English firm founded by a German immigrant).

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