Thursday, July 31, 2014

Cheaper

Some months ago, over a year now, the Italian brand Delta launched a strange nib. Strange, but with a lot of hype on the benefits of its unusual structure.

The Delta Fusion is, in actual terms, a steel nib topped with a gold hat. This combination, Delta advertisement claimed, provided an improved flow because the interface steel-gold raised the temperature of the ink, this rendering it more fluid…


Delta's Fusion nib, made by Bock.


The reverse side of the very same nib--an untipped stub. These two pictures are courtesy of KMPN.

Really?

If so, any gold plated steel nib should provide the same effect. Let us remember that interfacial effects only involve some few layers of material –of gold and steel in this case— and no especially thick coatings were needed.


Two "fusion" nibs by Pilot.

But on top of this fallacy there another one—Delta’s nib is not even a novelty! A long time ago in a galaxy far away Wearever created another hybrid nib. On this case, however, the writing material –or that supporting the writing point—was gold, and steel was used to attach the nib to the feed and to the section.



A "hybrid" nib by Wearever. The steel plate holds the gold nib in place.

Both cases follow the same argument—how do we reduce the gold content of the nib while preserving the added value of the gold nib itself? A number of strategies have been attempted along the history of pens. Delta’s is simply the last one—and the most ridiculous of the lot.

My thanks to Wagner member Shokubutsuen and to KMPN, whose pictures of the Delta Fusion nib are greatly appreciated.


Pilot Custom 74, music nib – Gary’s Red-Black

Bruno Taut
Shinjuku, July 23rd 2014
etiquetas: plumín, Delta, Wearever, soluciones técnicas, Bock

4 comments:

Hi Bell said...

Thanks for being among the few to "expose" Delta's rather sophomoric marketing ploy. Yours is probably the most straightforward assessment. Kudos!

Dr. D said...

My dear friend Bruno Taut:

You bring a good interesting point here.

I had always felt that al the hype and talk shown by Delta adds about their Fusion nib was pure... well, exactly that: hype and talk!.

I like and respect very much Delta products, and own and enjoy several fountain pens of this brand.

But I couldn´t believe all the things their brochures say about their Fusion nib properties, nor understand how a diferential temperature was created by two different metals are bonded together and this improving ink flow.

I finally bought a beautiful Fusion nib equipped Delta Dolce Vita, which is a beautiful pen.

My first intents to write with it were a complete disapontment.

The "M" nib I choose wrote like an "F", and the ink flow was so poor I couldn´t enjoy writing with it. I was really ungry!

I left the pen unattended for some weeks, till I decided that such a beautiful pen deserved a new opportunity. I inked again with different inks, and always the same poor results.

So I put the nib to my "personal treatment" and opened its tines with my most thin bladed pen knife.

Then the pen begun writing with a fluid ink flow as I like in my pens, and the "M" point begun to show... well almost as thick line as an "M" should look in my book.

Now I write with my Delta very often and enjoy it so much.

But its good writing is not thanks to the Fusion nib construction, but thanks to my own treatment.

I feel all the talking about this special consruction of this nib is just a way to elegantly justify the use of less costly gold and more cheaper steel.

Just my personal experience of course!!

Keep the good work my friend! Best cordial regards from Argentina, Abel.

Bruno Taut said...

Thanks, Dr. D and Hi Bell, for passing by and commenting. Thanks also for your support.

AT the time of writing this text I was unaware of how interesting it would be and how it would be received. There are many passionate attitudes in the fountain pen world, as we all know. So, it is nice to see that my argument resonated in some other people.

Thanks again,

BT

steb said...

I have a fusion 82 stub where the gold part has come off by itself. it looks to be just brazed or soldered onto the steel. No surprise the writing and ink flow is exactly as before the gold came off.

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