♦ Franklin-Christoph features fountain pen specialty nibs, customized by the Japanese nib master Michael Masuyama. All our High Performance Steel and 18K specialty nibs are hand ground to achieve exquisite distinction in performance. All pens with specialty nibs have been inked and tested, so you may find traces of ink residue or more likely a little remaining water within the nib and feed.
♦ Classic Italic nibs consist of a flat tip with flattened bottom iridium. Italics are typically used more for calligraphic writing, with stark edges for broad down strokes and very thin side strokes. These Italic nibs are sometimes called "Sharp Italic" best suited for calligraphers, or the otherwise trained hand, unless made as "cursive" - see below.
Franklin-Christoph Italic nibs are customized on the smoother cursive side as described below.
♦ Cursive Italic nibs - you might hear the word "cursive" used when describing a kind of italic nib. This is usually where the nib master smooths the contact line of the nib and the corners so that what is contacting the paper is a little smoother and more forgiving for normal cursive writing. The bottom of the iridium is still sharper than a stub, however, making the portion of the tip that is in contact with the paper thinner than a stub. Our Medium C. Italics are ground to approx. .8mm. Broad Cursive Italic nibs are ground to approx. 1.0mm.
♦ Stub nibs are similar to cursive italics but with the bottom iridium left more rounded though flatter than a stock medium or broad nib, so that a larger vertical surface touches the paper. What you give up in line sharpness of the italic, you gain in smoothness with the stub. A Stub nib still gives you line variation but is easier to write with in your every day handwriting. Our Medium Stub nibs are ground to approx. .9mm. Broad Stub nibs are ground to approx 1.1mm.
♦ Needlepoint nibs are carefully ground to a smaller tip. Needlepoints are commonly used in printing and numbering with small clean lines. We recommend these nibs for this kind of specialty writing/drawing. Our needlepoints are ground to approx .25mm. Try our extra-fine for a more ideal nib for use in script writing which has a .35-.40mm .
♦ Cursive Calligraphy nibs - these are actually factory made nibs which are very much like the stub nib tips, but are outside of the normal nib tip range so warrant reviewing here. The 1.1cc is very much like a broad stub, while the 1.4cc (on #5 nibs) and the 1.5cc (on #6 nibs) are like double broad stubs. These are not iridium tipped, which is not particularly needed on large HPSteel italicized nibs, and write smoothly with stub like line variation.
Nib tip tips:
*If this is your first foray into trying an italicized nib, we recommend you try a stub over a cursive italic. The stub or cursive calligraphy nibs are more forgiving and smooth feeling than the sharper italics while training yourself to write with this type of nib, or just for faster writing in general.
*If you are new to fountain pens and tend to write with more hand pressure with your normal rollerball or ballpoint, we recommend a steel nib over a gold. The gold is soft and will spread too wide with too much hand pressure.
*The Needlepoint is a highly specialized nib and doesn't work well with most cursive handwriting. It is mainly for lettering, character drawing and fine printing.
*The nib codes you will sometimes find on our site or in correspondence would be:
♦ Smaller F-C pens use #5 size nibs, while larger pens use #6 size nibs. Below is a list of which use which-
#5: Models 14, 25, 26, 27, 29, pocket 40, and 65.
#6: Models 02, 03, 19, 20, 33, 40 panther, and 66.
Link here to the nib ordering page.
♦ The Christoph nib is a factory produced nib exclusive to Franklin-Christoph. It has a two slit / three tine design commonly known as a music nib. This nib has a broad downstroke and thin sidestroke like any italic. The thickness of the lines can be controlled with angle as well. It's a versatile nib with a smooth feel - used for cursive writing, lettering, gothic printing, calligraphic writing and of course for creating music notes. To create music notes the proper way to angle the nib is parallel to the page line, creating a thin downstroke and thick sidestroke. This allows for the thin vertical lines and easy filling in of the ball shapes on music notes. The two nib slits spread the ink nicely for a consistent level of ink on the paper, with the feed designed for the ink to spread amongst its comb. As popular as this nib is, if you have really small handwriting it might be too broad for you. Otherwise, it can be a joy!