Creating a Personal Writing Experience

Your Hand Is Unique! Although a “stock” nib generally works very well for most people, a nib that is customized to your hand's unique requirements will often perform better. The tip can be shaped to compensate for the difference between being held at a steep angle or at a shallow angle to the paper, for example. Or, if you like great line variation but like modern pens with firmer nibs, your nib can be shaped as an italic or oblique italic. And so on.

To ensure that the nib we tune for you is adjusted in the best possible way, please be honest in your answers. Don’t tell us how you wish you handled a pen, tell us how you actually do handle a pen. Also, it’s very difficult to assess one’s own handling of a pen; please, if at all possible, ask a friend to watch you writing.

This form’s purpose is to provide information that will assist us when you are ordering a nib to be customized to your specific requirements, or sending one in for repair.

If you have ever submitted this form, please do not submit it again unless something about how you handle a pen has changed. We keep all nib questionnaires that have ever been submitted. All you need to do is mention in your email correspondence that there is a nib questionnaire on file for you.

Unless otherwise requested at the time of sale, we tune each new pen or nib at no extra charge before shipment. We fill the pen with Waterman Blue-Black ink and write with it on paper from the same fountain pen friendly pads we sell, adjusting as necessary to bring it up to our standard for smoothness and flow. The result is an  adjusted nib, not a customized one.

Different inks or different papers can produce different results. Any special adjustment to accommodate your flow preference or a specific ink or paper comes under the heading of customization, and there will be an additional charge for that work. To evaluate stroke widths that our nibs produce, right-click the image at the left to download a stroke width chart in PDF format (for Adobe Reader). The chart is designed to print on U.S. letter-size paper (81/2"×11"), and it should also print well on A4 paper.

Please print this form and fill it out when sending in a pen for nib repairs or customization. If you are ordering a pen from us you can also email it to us.

 1. Choose the illustration that most closely resembles the way you arrange your pen and paper.
Right-handed, paper vertical Right-handed, paper at an angle Right-handed, paper horizontal
Left-handed overwriter, paper vertical Left-handed overwriter, paper at an angle Left-handed overwriter, paper horizontal
If your writing style is very different, please describe it in the space for Additional Information (question 8). Be as specific as you can. If I need to ask further questions, I’ll send email.
Left-handed underwriter, paper at an angle Left-handed underwriter, paper horizontal Other
 2. Choose the illustration that most closely resembles the angle at which you hold your pen.
Pen at a high angle Pen at an average angle Pen at a low angle
 3. Choose the illustration that most closely indicates how firmly you press down on your pen.
Light pressure Moderate pressure Heavy pressure
 4. Choose the illustration that most closely resembles the height at which you grip your pen.
Grip high Grip midway Grip low
 5.  Choose the illustration that most closely resembles the way your pen’s nib is rotated. (These illustrations are exaggerated for clarity.)
Nib rotated counterclockwise, faces toward writer (right handed) Nib straight (right handed) Nib rotated clockwise, faces away from writer (right handed)
Nib rotated counterclockwise, faces away from writer (left handed) Nib straight (left handed) Nib rotated clockwise, faces toward writer (left handed)
 6. Please circle the number that reflects how wet you like your pens to write. The range is from 1 to 10, where 1 is Death Valley (very dry and probably prone to skip) and 10 is the Amazon River (very wet and possibly prone to lose prime if stored nib upward).
 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
 7. Please enter your name and email so we can connect this information to your order or work order.
 8Enter additional information that will help me to evaluate the work. For example, do you write by holding your hand fairly still and moving the pen with your fingers, or do you hold your hand more nearly rigid and move your whole arm as you would when writing on a blackboard (Palmer Method penmanship)?