6 Japanese Fountain Pens
To Help You Write Really Small
When getting into the world of fountain pens, you may have seen that Japanese nibs and Western Nibs tend to be different sizes. What exactly does this mean? Well, the Japanese pens (let’s use Pilot) will run a full size finer than their Western (German and American) counterparts (let’s say Lamy). So basically, a Pilot fine nib is closest in size to an extra fine Lamy nib. What’s the benefit of this? Well, Japanese pens are a lot finer and allow you to write really, really small. As an added bonus, the finer the nib, the less ink it uses. If you find yourself flying through a cartridge or converter fill, maybe use a finer nib so that ink will last a bit longer. But what if you don’t write really small? It’s okay to like a finer line for your writing. Personally, I find that my handwriting looks best somewhere around a 0.7mm (medium nib) line.
This buying guide takes a look at 6 Japanese fountain pens that will help you write small!
If you find yourself writing in margins of books or notes frequently, this is your pen. Not only does the EF nib write really tiny, but it also retracts easily for quick notes. Since there’s no cap to worry about, it can quickly and easily be put to use, then closed to prevent drying out. If you’re a student and into fountain pens, a Vanishing Point should be in your collection.
The Pilot Metropolitan (or MR) is one of the best affordable fountain pens out there. When it was released a few years back, it was only available in a medium nib. That’s not the case anymore. You can now pick up a Pilot MR in fine nib, allowing you to write that much smaller!
Looking for something a bit more premium? Consider picking up a Pilot Custom 74. This pen has a gold nib, and will write really, really small. The body is no-frills plastic, but the nib more than makes up for it. It’s a classically styled pen that’s available in plenty of different colors.
The Preppy was one of the first fountain pens I purchased. It’s a great affordable way to test the waters, and the nibs perform surprisingly well. This extra fine nib writes with a line that’s just around 0.2mm. This incredibly fine nib is great for taking notes in the margins, or even in between lines.
The 14k nib on this Sailor Professional Gear is one of the finest out there. I had one in my collection, but it was honestly just too fine for me. The nib wrote nice and smooth, but it wasn’t aligned with my preference in nib size. What does this mean for you? If you’re looking for a great pen that looks a bit different, check out this flat-topped Pro Gear.
Although I haven’t reviewed it, I have one of the Pilot Penmanships. It’s one of the finest nibs I’ve ever written with. The line it lays down on the page is like a single hair. It’s got a bit of feedback to it, but if you need to write really, REALLY fine, then consider the Penmanship. Best part about it? It’s only $7. The nib can be put into the Pilot MR if you prefer the body on that pen. It’s much better quality than the cheap plastic of this one. $7 for a replacement nib isn’t a bad deal though!
Do you have a favorite extra fine nib? Let us know what it is in the comments below!