Most fountain pen users will write with nibs that have an unchanging line width. But once you explore the realm of pens that provide you with line variation, writing with fountain pens can be much more exciting.
Flex nibs can add a calligraphic flair to your handwriting. Here, we’ll discuss what flex nibs are, when to use them, and which ones you can try to give your handwriting more oomph.
What does flex mean?
Flex refers to a nib that is soft enough to write with varying line widths based on the amount of pressure the writer applies as they write. Most fountain pens come with stiff and unbending nibs; flex nibs are designed to bend as you write across a page.
These flex nibs are available not only on fountain pens but on dip pens as well. Dip pens are designed to be more flexible and allow for even more line variation. They are different from fountain pens in that fountain pens provide a continuous ink supply and are more practical for everyday use.
When to use flex nibs
Flex nibs are great for everyday writing if you want to see some line variation. They are also especially useful for calligraphy and any type of flourished writing. Artists can also use these pens for sketching and drawing without having to lug around sets of pens or pencils.
Flex nibs to try
There are many fountain pens with flex nibs that you can try. Start with these options so you can dip your toes into writing with flex.
The Opus 88 Demonstrator is an eyedropper fountain pen that holds loads of ink, so you can write for long periods. The nib is flexible enough and bends when pressure is applied, so you can add sweeping strokes and tapers to your writing.
If you can afford to spend a bit more on a flex fountain pen, then the Pilot Falcon is a great option. The nib is really the main attraction of this pen as it is shaped uniquely and allows the tines to be more flexible. It is soft, flexible, and responsive. It isn’t mush, but it also doesn’t require so much effort that your hand gets tired after writing a few words.
Fountain pens from The Good Blue Co. offer great flex options for beginners. It is durable and tough, making it a perfect everyday fountain pen. We recently reviewed these fountain pens and found that there are variations in the flex options they offer. The titanium flex is the softest and smoothest but with less line variation. The steel flex, on the other hand, is a bit firmer and less smooth than the titanium but with more line variation.
Tips for writing with flex nibs
Writing with flex nibs can take some adjustment. Here are some tips to make it a bit easier:
- Flush out your pens first
- Write slowly
- Flex only on the pulling motion (downward stroke) when writing
- Do not overflex — over-flexing can cause the tines of your nib to splay. At such point, you will need a professional nib meister to fix it. Sometimes, the damage may be irreversible.
- Take your time and practice, practice, practice
And there you have it! Flex nibs are great for adding a bit more flair to your writing. Though they can take a bit of practice to get used to, the results are usually worth it.
Written by EndlessPens Blogger Ramona Kabigting