Namiki Falcon And J. Herbin Meet Clairefontaine


A Namiki (Pilot) Falcon sporting a soft fine nib makes a lovely bridge between J. Herbin Eclat de Saphir and Clairefontaine French-Ruled paper. This isn’t calligraphy, but rather whimsical, swirly lettering that suits the way the nib likes to dance over the smooth surface of the paper. The ink provides proof that the pen and paper came together.

If you want the trio, Writer’s Bloc carries the pen, paper and ink. Nibs.com carries the pen and will modify it in amazing ways. John Mottishaw is their nibmeister and he may well be the best at his craft.

If you want to experiment with a flex nib but not tax your budget, Noodler’s makes fountain pens that will give you a sense of what it’s like to achieve thick and thin in the same stroke. Amazon offers the range in various colors though my clear Standard Flex is hard to beat when it comes to showing off ink to its best advantage.


So go have some flex fun filling lots and lots of pages, but don’t be surprised if it becomes an addiction. It’s a fat-free, guilt-free one and will even keep your hand out of the cookie jar while you doodle away. Cool, eh?


  1. For the first moment there, I honestly thought that was printed. I wondered why you would use a computer script for a picture on this blog🙂
    Let me say: beautiful calligraphy (all right, whimsical swirly lettering😛 ). Not to mention the gorgeous ink. That pen looks amazing, and the writing it produces is well worth the investment I’d say.
    Gorgeous work there. Thank you for sharing. And the information!

    Does it take much longer to write with flex nibs? While I enjoy great looking writing, I usually do a lot of longhand writing in my notebooks and I need a certain flow. Would that be practical for the more normal everyday writing as well, or not? What would you say?


    • Thank you for the kind words. I just bought a book called “The Art of Whimsical Lettering” to experiment with felt tips and watercolor brushes. Have you played with anything like that?

      Yes, it does take slowing down a bit to keep the ink flowing well. There is a rhythm to it that can be very relaxing. I have used a Namiki Falcon for general writing while avoiding the slight pressure the wider lines require. With an ink that is well-lubricated, the fine tip should glide over good paper. I have read that the SM (soft medium) might be the better choice for general writing though it won’t produce as fine a line as the SF. I lack experience with it so cannot attest either way.

      Should you decide to purchase a Namiki Falcon SF, I have owned two and both required some use before they were suitable for general use. It didn’t take long, but be aware that your first stroke may be quite different from your hundredth.


      • Well, I got me a hand-lettering book not too long ago, though I haven’t tried it yet🙂 But I love those hand-lettered post-cards and coffee house menus that have started appearing the last two years here. I will see how far I get there. Not now, though, now is writing time😉

        I’m not sure I will get one, but I’ve only recently ventured into the Fine variety of nibs. Until now I was more into Medium (especially European Medium) and up – Broad, double Broad, and stubs. But I can imagine the SF or SM (Japanese) even to be quite thin stroke.

        I think I will try the Falcon at one time, just not now🙂 But thank you for the extensive information. I appreciate it.


        • Happy to help. Just one further remark on the Falcon. The SB is very stiff. It might be good for modification, but it is disappointing as a flex nib.

          Another option is a vintage Esterbrook with a flex nib. I have a few of the #9128 nibs that are relatively flexible. Best to buy one that has had a sac replacement unless you can do it yourself. Once the pen has been serviced, it should work well for a long time. The nibs can be swapped which is an added bonus. I recommend the #9xxx series, but there are others. Lots of information on the web if that interests you.

          Liked by 1 person

          • wow, thank you🙂
            I’m not much into vintage pens yet, or rather, I haven’t dared to go into vintage pens yet😉 But if I get that (common for me) urge to go for a new pen, it’ll certainly be one of those then🙂
            That was so helpful, thanks for taking the time for this extensive info!


            • Welcome.🙂


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