What Is the Difference Between Nib Type F and M?

The difference between nib types F and M lies in the width of the writing line they produce. The Fine nib, denoted by F, offers a considerably thinner line, measuring approximately 0.2mm finer than it’s Medium counterpart within the same brand. The Fine nib is particularly well-suited for individuals with small handwriting, allowing for precise and compact lettering. On the other hand, the Medium nib, denoted by M, is the most widely favored nib width due to it’s versatility and popularity. With a medium width line, it strikes a balance between boldness and legibility, making it suitable for a diverse range of writing styles and purposes.

What Does the F and M Mean on Pens?

When it comes to the letters F and M on pens, they actually stand for fine and medium respectively. These letters denote the size of the pen nib and indicate the width of the line that will be produced when writing with the pen.

The F nib, which stands for fine, typically produces a line width of around 0.6mm. This means that the ink flow from the pen is narrower, resulting in a finer or thinner line. The fine nib is often preferred by individuals with small or neat handwriting, as it allows for more precision and control.

On the other hand, the M nib, which stands for medium, creates a slightly wider line width of around 0.8mm. The medium nib is generally used by those who prefer a bolder or more substantial line, as it allows for a smoother and more visible writing experience.

The choice between an F or M nib ultimately depends on an individuals personal preference and writing style.

Additionally, it’s important to note that there are also other nib sizes available for pens, such as extra-fine (EF), broad (B), and even specialty nibs like italic or calligraphy nibs. Each nib size offers a distinct line width and can cater to different writing needs and preferences.

The choice of nib size depends on personal preference and the desired effect of the writing or drawing.

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The numbers found on the top of many older nibs hold significant meaning. Contrary to common belief, these numbers don’t indicate the thickness of the writing tip, but rather the size of the nib. Let’s delve into the intriguing world of nib numbers to uncover their true significance.

What Do Nib Numbers Mean?

The nib number is a historic system that was used to indicate the size of the nib. It was primarily used in older fountain pens and calligraphy pens. The number on the nib doesn’t refer to the thickness of the writing tip, but rather to the overall size and shape of the nib.

Nibs with lower numbers, such as 0 or 1, are often used for detailed work or fine writing. They’ve a thinner line width and are more suitable for intricate calligraphy or precise handwriting. On the other hand, nibs with higher numbers, like 6 or 8, are broader in width and are often used for bold, expressive writing or broad calligraphy strokes.

Understanding nib numbers can help you choose the right size and style of nib for your writing needs. Whether you prefer a fine, delicate line or a bold, expressive stroke, the nib number can guide you in finding the perfect nib for your fountain pen or calligraphy set.

Different Types of Nibs and Their Characteristics (e.g. Italic Nibs, Flex Nibs)

Nibs are an important part of fountain pens, and they come in various types, each with it’s unique characteristics. The italic nib, for example, has a stub-like shape and produces thick downstrokes and thin horizontal lines. It makes your writing appear elegant and sophisticated. On the other hand, flex nibs offer flexibility, allowing you to create lines of varying widths with pressure applied while writing. This adds depth and artistic flair to your letters. These are just a couple of examples, and there are many more nib types out there, each offering a different writing experience and style.


Ultimately, the choice between a Fine and Medium nib comes down to personal preference and the specific needs of the writer.

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