A simple mod – an incredible result.
Last week @FourFiftyTwo on Instagram posted a pic of a Jinhao X450 with a Zebra Comic “G” nib and some pics of the result. Needless to say I went right to Amazon and ordered up a pack of nibs (10 pack is about $9). The process is really straight forward – you’ll want to remove the Jinhao nib and feed and put the old nib aside. Next take one of the new G-Nibs and set the end of the Jinhao feed about 1.5mm from the end of the nib. You will notice that if you now hold the nib and feed together at the back the nib curves slightly up and away as you approach the tip – but not to worry, as the nib is pushed into the barrel it will line up perfectly. Start by pinching the nib and feed at the back and get them both started into the hole – this may take just a little force. Once they are both in (but just a millimeter or two) make any slight adjustments to the nib to get your approximate 1.5mm gap at the tip. Once you are happy with the feed alignment push the nib and feed into the pen.
Now you will need to fine tune the nib which means inky fingers and some trial-and-error. A few notes – I have found forcing ink into the feed with the convertor when first inking up helps a lot – once you are writing it seems to do really well and if it begins to dry out a quick twist of the convertor and you are back in business.
One note: do take care when pushing and pulling out the new Zebra nib. As you can see from the pic on the right, unlike the original Jinhao it’s very sharp (trust me on this).
The flex is pretty amazing and the pen does a great job keeping up with the ink flow the new nib needs. Keep in mind this is not a nice smooth tipped 14k nib – it’s sharp so it will shred cheap papers but it did great on my Clairefontaine and Rhodia notebooks. The line width variation is fantastic – about an extra fine on the thin side and fully open it feels like a 1.5mm stub. The flex dies not require a ton of pressure to produce and the nib is very springy and snaps back easily.
For less than a $1 a nib this was a great way to play with flex writing – need to get out the Noodler’s Ahab and see how it stacks up against the Jinhao next!