Posts filed under Architect Nib

NibGrinder Micro Architect Nib Grind Review

NibGrinder Micro Architect Nib Grind Review

The NibGrinder Micro Architect grind is the Pilot Hi-Tec-C 0.3 mm of nib grinds.

If you have followed me for any length of time then you know that the Pilot Hi-Tec-C 0.3 mm is one of my all-time favorite gel ink pens. You also know that I rarely, if ever, recommend it. It is fine almost to the point of obscene, and extremely finicky. It hard starts and can be uneven, but when it is going good, it makes my handwriting look amazing.

These words are exactly how I feel about this nib grind.

NibGrinder Micro Architect Nib Grind

Mark Bacas, the man behind NibGrinder, sent me this nib after the 2018 Atlanta Pen Show. It was one of those experiments that I get involved in frequently. “Hey Brad, I think this is right up your alley.” My friends know me well.

NibGrinder Micro Architect Nib

Mark called this a micro architect grind, but it is no different than any standard architect nib grind. It just happens to be on a finer stock nib than most architect nib grinds. An architect grind generally works the best on broad nibs to give the nib grinder a larger area of manipulation, while giving the consumer a smoother writing experience. Since this is a North/South angled grind, as opposed to East/West like a stub (see the previous link), the wider the nib, the smoother the writing experience.

NibGrinder Micro Architect Nib Writing

What would the results be if you applied this grind to a finer-nibbed pen, like this steel Jowo F nib? For me, the results are amazing, but not without challenges.

First and foremost, the nib is sharp. This means there is a small sweet spot on the nib, and your writing angle better hit it. You run into this with standard architect nib grinds as well, but you have more wiggle room. Angle of attack matters with this pen more than any other pen I own.

NibGrinder Micro Architect Nib Writing

Writing pace matters, too. I’m a fast writer, and to get the full effect of this nib grind, I had to slow it down. I’m ok with this because the results are worth it, but I dug the tip of the nib into the page more than once on a south to north stroke. That stroke should be eliminated with most architect grinds, but even more so with one this fine. I have to slow it down.

NibGrinder Architect Samples

If you have a bad writing angle and incorrect pace, your results will be inconsistent. The ink flow will be poor, as will the line consistency. You will also end up with paper fibers stuck in the nib, so keeping my brass shim handy was important.

Nib Grinds

Bringing this full circle, I feel like my comparison is correct. What I get from this micro architect grind is the same thing I get from the Pilot Hi-Tec-C 0.3 mm gel ink pen. It can be a troublemaker if you aren’t ready for it, but when it goes right, it is fantastic.

(NibGrinder provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)


Enjoy reading The Pen Addict? Then consider becoming a member to receive additional weekly content, giveaways, and discounts in The Pen Addict shop. Plus, you support me and the site directly, for which I am very grateful.

Membership starts at just $5/month, with a discounted annual option available. To find out more about membership click here and join us!

Architect Nib Grind Writing
Posted on May 6, 2019 and filed under Nib Grind, Architect Nib, Pen Reviews.

Architect Nib vs. Stub Nib

Architect Nib vs Stub Nib

One of the most frequent questions I get asked at a pen show is “Do you have an architect nib grind I can test out?” I try to bring the one that I have, a Platinum 3776 broad nib modified into an architect nib by Dan Smith. I don’t always remember it, so I figured I would do a quick comparison between an architect nib and stub nib so you can see what this grind has to offer.

Architect Nib vs Stub

Let’s start with this: Pictures will never do an architect nib justice. It has a completely different feel when writing, more than even the sharpest cursive italic nib offers. It requires a consistent writing angle to reach its full effect, and no amount of practice is ever enough. It’s a commitment, as the ~$60 price tag for just the grind tells you.

Once you get it, it can be a complete blast to use. The line variance is enormous, and the exact opposite of what you get from a stub or cursive italic nib.

Architect Nib Bottom

For this comparison, I put my TWSBI ECO-T with a stock 1.1 mm stub nib to the test. I figure it is a fairly normal stock stub nib to compare to that many people may have used. And as stated above, the architect grind was done on a broad Platinum 3776 nib for full effect. The more nib tipping for an architect grind for a nibmeister to work with, the better. Also, the more line variation you will have.

Architect Nib Lines

You can see in the picture above, the architect nib gives you thin vertical strokes and wide horizontal strokes. The stub nib is essentially the opposite, but with wider thin lines. When writing the alphabet, you can see how the line thicknesses caused by the shape of the nibs compare. Letters like E, F, and T with very defined, angular strokes show this variance. H may be my favorite.

Architect Nib Alphabet

I write with a blocky architecture style to begin with, so at a quick glance you may not notice a ton of difference. Rest assured, the feel of the nib is very different. I have to pay more attention with the architect nib, and force myself to slow down. The architect nib isn’t the best with curved shapes, and I would hesitate using it for cursive handwriting due to the angle of the nib. I’m sure it can be done, I’m just not sure how enjoyable it would be.

Architect Nib Grind

The architect nib is designed for sharp, straight lines, and that’s what it does best. The more letters I put down on the page, the more I notice the different effect this nib provides. As much as I love it and have fun with it when I use it, it is not an all day, every day writer for me. But, I’m glad I have it, and I’m glad to let you try it out whenever you see me at a pen show. I’ll make sure I have this pen with me, inked up and ready to write!


Enjoy reading The Pen Addict? Then consider becoming a member to receive additional weekly content, giveaways, and discounts in The Pen Addict shop. Plus, you support me and the site directly, for which I am very grateful.

Membership starts at just $5/month, with a discounted annual option available. To find out more about membership click here and join us!

Architect Nib Comparison
Posted on April 9, 2018 and filed under Architect Nib, Pen Reviews.