Speedball C Set Review (Plus Cleaning Tips)

calligraphy, supplies, traditional-calligraphy

The first broad edge nib that I use is a Mitchell, but I went and used the Speedball C for practising Uncial just to try different nibs.

Speedball. The old trusted affordable brand of nibs. My first impression was, compared to the Mitchell it feels more like wearing high heels. The Speedball nib is longer than the Mitchell, adding the distance from your hand to paper. It does take a bit of getting used to for me. On the other hand, visibility is increased as I can see my letters better when drawing them. I also find that the strokes are more precise, maybe thanks to the built-in reservoir controlling ink flow (I do not use the Mitchell’s reservoir). It also allows me to write 3 to 5 letters without pausing to load the ink, which is a boon when practising.

Now I will share my tips for cleaning the Speedball broad edge nibs. For starters, I use dampened paper towel to absorb most of the ink. Press the nib to the tissue several times until there’s no new spot of ink on the tissue. Also wipe the edge of the nib.

To clean the space between the reservoir and nib, I use a cheap clean brush. Wet the brush, insert the hair through the top gap and move the brush downward and out along the reservoir. Wash in a clean water bowl and repeat until it absorbs no more ink residue. I don’t always do this step, only after several practice sessions. I usually just like to use a somewhat thick scrap paper and run its corner through the gap instead to absorb the water between reservoir and nib.

Lastly, dry the nib with clean, dry tissue before storage.

S.

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