Using A Dip Pen Nib on a Fountain Pen

SketchBlog, Things  /   /  By Rica Espiritu  /  564 views

Have you ever tried using a dip pen nib on a fountain pen? Don’t you wish you could have an endless supply of ink without having to dip? You might say, “Well that’s why fountain pens were created”. Yes, but it doesn’t have the flex and expressiveness of a dip pen nib. In order to have that kind of pen, you have to spend $400 – $1,000 or even more if you want it specially made.

What I did costs less than $20 – shipping included.

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Dilli fountain pen with a dip pen nib

Yes, this is a dip pen on a budget. I bought a dilli from FPR. Even if it was marked as flex, my Ahab flexed better than its nib. I know it is cheap and you get what you pay for. However I also believe that somewhere, out there, artists have found creative means to get their work done. I remember artists creating their own ink and water brushes long before it was available in the market. If they could do it, why can’t I?

I looked online for a solution to the railroading problem the Noodler’s Ahab and Konrad had. Most of them recommend sanding and trimming down the nib. That is, until I stumbled upon Nathan Tardiff’s video on the noodler’s site, on how he used a speedball dip pen nib on the Noodler’s Creaper. Yes, Nathan Tardiff himself played with with TWO kinds of speedball nibs to create the ultimate tool for artists like me.

I didn’t have a Creaper but I did have the Dilli pen whose nib eerily resembles the Creaper. So I pulled that out and looked for a fitting dip nib that I could use on the feed. I received a 25-piece Copperplate sampler a few months ago and found a perfect fit in the Leonardt nib.

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Yes, I know I’m “cheap”. 🙂

Dilli pen: $15
Leonardt dip pen nib: $1

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If you guys have plans of doing this, remember to put in enough ink that you will use. You have to clean the nib after each use. Since most dip nibs are not stainless, they will rust if you leave it on for days! Check out what happened to my nib after I left it for 10 hours on the feed:

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What I used was a Sailor Nano Black fountain pen ink. It stained the nib and no amount of rubbing alcohol could take it out. I don’t mind that as long as the ink is dry and clean. If leaving it on for 10 hours could stain the nib, what more if you left it overnight? Or heaven forbid – one week?

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