New Grinds from Custom Nib Studio

My pens came back from Custom Nib Studio today! As mentioned previously, I requested a Journaler grind on the Aurora Ipsilon and a Perspective grind on the Lamy Safari.

These are both great everyday pens with quick access snap caps and secure posting. I’m comfortable taking either one to work knowing they are ready to go whenever I need them. That said, they both could benefit from a nib upgrade.

The Ipsilon has a steel nib, originally medium. It always wrote well but the line was nondescript. The Safari nib is gold, originally broad. Wrote a smooth wet line that showed off ink nicely but broad nibs tend to have limited everyday utility for me. Since the Lamy nibs are easily interchangeable I wanted to get something with interest and character that could go on almost any Lamy model I might ever own. And if I want a big broad line for some reason, I have a Platinum 3776 coarse nib or a Sailor Fude de Mannen on hand.

The Perspective grind surprised me at first with how thin the down strokes are. The cross strokes are changeable based on how steep or shallow you are to the paper, as expected from the Naginata style. More than anything else, though, I’m taken with the way it glides on the page at any angle. If you specifically want the wider or thinner horizontal lines then you can focus in and work the angles as needed, but you can also just write without worrying about how the nib is situated and get a fun variable line. So forgiving and easy to use.

The Journaler grind’s line looks broad when side by side with the Perspective but that could be a function of the Iroshizuku ink’s wetness compared to Lamy Violet. There was also a higher level of feedback than I thought there might be. Not a problem by any stretch, but I did a small amount of scribbling with the Journaler on micromesh (12000 grit wet/dry abrasive) and the feedback was reduced to give a smoother feel on the page, which I prefer for a nib of this size and style.

I am quite pleased with how both nibs came out. The writing experience is improved and more interesting. That plays a large part in what makes a given pen worth keeping in the collection. A pen you want to write with, that you are excited to use, is a pen you want to hang on to.

The grinds are what you send the pens out for but it’s important to note the service you get from any nibmeister when it comes to communication and shipping. Both times I sent pens to Gena there was an email to tell me the pens were initially received in L.A., which is reassuring. The turnaround times were accurate to the original quote. When I got an invoice to say the pens were ready and then made my payment, they were shipped back promptly and securely using the same materials I originally sent them in, along with a nice note thanking me for my business. This is what you want the experience to be.

The first time I tried to get grinds from a different nibmeister, maybe 5 years ago, the communication and follow-up were poor. I ended up so frustrated with the delays and lack of information that I had the pens sent back without any work done. This despite the person being well known in the pen community and having many reviews from folks who said they had great service. The disappointment left a sour taste with me and it took a while to decide to try again. I’m happy I did and I’m happy I chose Gena to take care of my pens, because everything about the experience with Custom Nib Studio has been great.

Thank you, Gena. I sincerely appreciate your work and the care you show for your customers.

17 June 2023