Monday, July 13, 2015

Early Pilot Nibs. I. Introduction

Few things are standard in the world of fountain pens. Each pen brand seems to create its small world with its own systems of names and measurements. A very clear example of this lack of standards is the way pen makers number their nibs. Many aficionados as well as traders simplify the wide gamut of Bock nibs as being of sizes 5, 6 or 8, which are, in actual terms, the diameters of their corresponding feeds. But those numbers have little to do with Pilot’s –to name just one company— nibs labeled as 3, 5, 10, 15, 20 and 50. Sailor and Platinum, on their side, do not even bother to number their nibs nowadays.


A Bock nib, with a 6 mm feed, on an Eboya pen (formerly Nebotek).


Sailor nibs in three different sizes.


Four modern Pilot nibs in size 15.

In the early days of Pilot, the numbering system was very different: from 0 to 8, with the possible exception of 7, plus 20 and 50. Now, do those numbers mean anything?

With this text I am starting a new series of Chronicles aiming at describing all these nibs, and to analyze whether those numbers really meant anything. This is, needless to say, a work in progress.


Four Pilot nibs from the 1920s. They are labeled as sizes 1 and 3.

One additional note: The title speaks of “early” nibs. By that I mean all those nibs that followed a more or les consistent system of numeration. This came to an end with the implementation of the Super model in 1955. Up to that year, the vast majority of Pilot pens sported open nibs (i. e, showing the feed as well) labeled with what seemed to be a normalized numbering. Therefore, “early” means, more or less, before 1955. And implicit on this classification is the hope that those standards were maintained over all those years.

This series is a joint effort of some pen enthusiasts who offered their assistance to compile all the information. Their names are N. Syrigonakis and A. Zúñiga.


Platinum pocket pen, black stripes – Platinum Black

Bruno Taut
Chuo, June 13th, 2015
etiquetas: plumín, Pilot, Bock, Sailor, Platinum, Eboya

1 comment:

Rafael R. Pappalardo said...

las partes de esta serie aventuro que van a ser más esperadas que el sexto libro,de cación de hielo y fuego.

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