11 December 2011


Sailor’s nibmeister Nagahara Nobuyoshi (長原宣義) has announced his retirement on the last issue (December 2011) of magazine Shumi-no Bungubako. Logical as it is at his age (he was born in 1932), it is indeed a big loss for the fountain pen scene.

Nibmeister Mr. Nagahara Nobuyoshi at the past Fuente Pen Show (Tokyo, October 2011).

As I have already stated on previous chronicles, Nagahara’s specialty nibs are the single most exciting innovation in fountain pens in many years. After over one hundred years of pen history, not much room there seems to be for changes in an out-of-fashion writing tool. Filling systems, body materials, and nibs and feeds are the basic areas of evolution in a fountain pen. However, it is hard to become impressed by new materials and nothing new we have seen in ages re filling systems and feeds.

Cover of issue 21 of Shumi no Bungubako where the retirement of Mr. Nahagara is announced.

In the nib department, most companies became content with a very limited selection of points, mostly based on the F-M-B triad. A small number of companies, fortunately, are working on revisiting some arcane nib points—flexible and stub, mostly. And then came Sailor and the radical approach to nibs of Mr. Nobuyoshi Nagahara.

In 2007, Mr Nagahara was awarded by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare of Japan with the distinction of Master of Modern Arts. At the time, Sailor released this limited edition pen whose nib is engraved with Mr. Nagahara's first name: Nobuyoshi (宣義).

I hope his retirement did not mean Sailor abandoned either the will to innovate or the production of these impressive specialty nibs.

My thanks to Mr. Noguchi.

(Sailor Realo with Cross-music nib – Pelikan 4001 Royal Blue)

Bruno Taut

December 10th, 2011
[labels: Sailor, soluciones técnicas, plumín, Shumi no Bungubako]

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