About Nakaya Nibs

Nib is the most important part of a fountain pen. It leads ink from the nib feed to the tip via the tines and writes characters on paper. For smooth writing it needs proper flexibility and round tips. It is the life of a fountain pen. Therefore there are 55 separate steps in the nib creation process, each requiring the utmost care.

Material of the nib

There are 2 types of nib material.

1. 18K, 14K gold

As gold is very expensive it is used for high-class fountain pens. Gold never rusts or erodes, and it won't be corroded by sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid or nitric acid contained in ink. Flexible writing touch is a characteristic of gold.
2.Stainless steel
Stainless steel has nearlest the same writing touch and strength against acids as gold. As it is very inexpensive it are used for cheaper fountain pens.

It is alloy made of 65% of Iridium, Osmium, Ruthenium and 35% of platinum and other metals. Its molecules are very fine, harder than any other metal and it is the heaviest metal. Its hardness is next to that of diamonds! Its polished surface shines like silver and runs over the paper smoothly. With the iridium on the tip you can write 5 to 6 million characters. If calculated into distance it is equals to 60 to 70 km. Even if you write 1000 characters per day it will last for 10 years.
14k gold is the best material for a nib

the reasons are:
1. Highly corrosive-resistant so it doesn't rust and lasts for many years of usage.
2. The softness of 14k gold makes for flexibile writing touch.
3. Iridosmine can be attached firmly without losing its strength.

Nib point sizes

Bin sizes are differentiated by the width of the writing line. The size is imprinted on the nib. You should check the nib size imprint when you purchase a pen.

NibWidth of the line(mm)Characteristic, usage
Ultra Extra Fine(UEF) / 超極細
(Super Extra Fine)
0.18-0.24 Especially suited for fine numbers and characters, suitable for bookkeeping.
Extra Fine(EF) / 極細 0.24-0.28 For fine numbers and characters, suitable for students' note taking.
Fine(F) / 細 0.28-0.34 For general fine characters, suitable for students' note taking.
Soft Fine(SF) / 細軟
(Flexible Fine)
0.28-0.34 Same line size, but more flexible than flexible. A stamp of the elastic fine is same.  
Medium(M) / 中 0.34-0.44 Smooth writing, suitable for general writing.
Soft Medium(SM) / 中軟
(Flexible Medium)
0.4-0.5 Same line size,but more flexible than medium. A stamp of the elastic medium is same.
Broad(B) / 太 0.44-0.54 Suitable for manuscript, address writing.
Extra Broad(C) / 極太 0.66-0.86 Suitable for those who love broad writing.
Music(MS) 0.9-1.0 A music nib has two slits, so that you can express stubby line without many scratch writing feelings.

*A design on the nib will be changed sometimes without any notice.
  However a design does not make any difference for writing abiltiy . 

Elastic nibs

It is possible to add more flexibility by cutting both side of the nib.

Normal nib Elastic nib
Music Elastic Music
Extra Broad Elastic Extra Broad
Broad Elastic Broad
*Soft Medium *Elastic Soft Medium
*Soft Fine *Elastic Soft Fine
Extra Fine Elastic Extra Fine
Ultra Extra Fine Elastic Ultra Extra Fine

*It's NOT available to add Elastic finish to "Medium" and "Fine" even though you can choose it in the order system.
・Additional cost: 125.00 USD
・The cut for elastic will interfere the design of two-tone plated nib.

Nib design

It is possible to plate your nib with the colors below.
From the left in the picture, pink gold, rhodium, ruthenium, two-tone, and single tone(gold).

*Plating cost*
pink gold plated, rhodium plated, ruthenium plated ; +$42
two-tone color ; +$84

*Music nib*
mono-tone ; $84
Extra cost above will be charged for plating and elastic nib of Music also.


Especially writing Japanese characters, it's important to have elasticity. It is recommended to check 5 points below when you purchase a fountain pen.

Gold pen nibs and acid resistant nibs are very different in elasticity. 18K gold is most flexsible, and 14K gold is the next. Stainless is very high rigidity. And because of the cost is low, it is used for middle to low class products. ②Thickness
As you can guess, if the material is thick, nib will be hard, and vise versa. Also, appropliate slope gives flexibility to the nib.

Nibs are made as curving as an arch. The deeper the bend, the less elastic.

Deep curv Shallow curv

④Hart shape hole
Depending on the shape, size and position of the hole makes the elasticity changed very much. If the hart shape hole is wider and bigger, it makes more flexible because the writing pressure will spread away through the both side. On the contrary, round and small hole makes the nib harder. Also, if the hart shaped hole positioned more closer to the tip, the nib will be harder.

⑤Tip length
The longer tip length gives more flexibity to the nib, and vise versa.

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