About Our Overfeeds

Overfeeds are devices that rest on top of the nib and an optional attachment to our fountain and pump pens. They are designed to store additional ink between the nib and overfeed and feed that ink to the tip of the flexible nib when lifted off the underfeed. That's a mouthful but sums up the performance of overfeeds.

Overfeeds were used during the golden age of fountain pens, but you hardly see any today. Most historical overfeeds are fixed permanently into the pen. Ackerman Pens' overfeeds are removable and are designed in the same shape as the nib they support.

Some people learn how to get the best out of overfeeds. Others prefer drawing without overfeeds because they don’t want the richer ink flow and the extra control required to use them correctly. Ackerman Pens provides overfeeds for people who like the benefits.

Our overfeeds are designed to let you draw wider lines for a longer time using flexible pointed nibs. Our overfeeds can increase your thick lines by a factor of ten, which means your thickest line will be ten times as thick as your thinnest line. This contrasts with the maximum variable line width you can draw without an
overfeed, which is about 1:5 or five times as thick as your thinnest line. The overfeed lays over the nib and does two things: it stores more ink on top of the nib and feeds the extra ink to the tip of the nib when the nib flexes backwards.

About Our Overfeeds

Our pens that contain overfeeds are specifically configured for the overfeed. You cannot use our overfeeds in pens that have not been configured for them. If you do not want to use the overfeed, you can remove the overfeed and replace it with a spacer until you want to switch back to the overfeed.

Two Things to Note

• Your pen must be configured for overfeeds in order to use the devices. We sell our overfeeds for fans
who like to stock up, but our overfeeds only fit pens that have been configured for them. You cannot use
our overfeeds in pens that have not been configured as such.
• We provide spacers that replace the overfeed when you don’t want to use the overfeed. This lets you remove the overfeed and use the pen as you normally would, then reinsert the overfeed when you want to use it.

Nibs You Can Use

We provide overfeeds for Fountain Pens and Pump Pens that contain the following nibs:

  • Brause Rose
  • Manga G Nikko
  • Manga G Tachikawa
  • Manga G Zebra
  • Sketch

Other nibs of a similar shape and size can also work, such as the Hunt 101, but these are all larger nibs. We’ve tried to devise overfeeds for smaller nibs, but they don’t work very well.

Positioning the Overfeed

Our overfeed looks like a nib when at first because it is shaped to fit over the nib and hug the nib. In most cases, you can use the overfeed as it is delivered out of the box. You don’t need to do anything except fill the pen with ink, get the flow going to the nib, and start drawing. 

If you want to clean or replace the feed or nib, you can pull out all three — the overfeed, the nib, and the underfeed — from the front of the pen. You can reinsert the three items two ways: one by one or altogether. If one by one: push the feed in first, then the nib, and finally the feed. You can slide the nib back and forth to find the “sweet spot," but, in most cases, the nib works best when it is fully inserted over the underfeed.

Working With a New Overfeed

When working with a new overfeed, you have to be careful that you
don’t plug the air hole in the nib, otherwise the ink flow will stop. Try
to position the hole in the overfeed over the air hole in the nib. If
you’re working with a new overfeed, you should make sure the tip is
bent down slightly. This is the way Ackerman Pens packages our
overfeeds, but the overfeed might flatten over time.

Alternatively. you might find the overfeed works better with more flex. Just bend it slightly with your fingers. The arch helps more store more ink and provides a space for air to flow back into the pen. The arch helps store more ink and provides a space for air to flow back into the pen.

Working With All Overfeeds

The next step is to place the overfeed in the right position over the nib. A lot of your success depends on this step.

First make sure that the tip of the overfeed doesn’t point of to one side of the nib as shown on the right. Correct this by pushing the tip back into the right position with your finger. Once the tip is in the right position, rub the overfeed with your thumb to make sure the entire overfeed has adjusted to the new position.

You want the tip of the overfeed to line up with the tip of the nib as shown. This position is important when you start flexing the nib so the two sides of the nib (called “tynes”) ride up on either side of the overfeed. The tip of the overfeed must slide between the two tynes to be efective.

The tip of the overfeed should rest just behind the tip of the nib. This lets the tip of the nib rise up a bit without flexing the overfeed. You don’t need the overfeed until the nib lifts sufciently of the underfeed.

Since the overfeed fits several diferent nibs, and each nib has a diferent length, the position of the overfeed depends on the nib you’re using. The wide end of the overfeed will be flush with the back end of the Manga G Zebra and Sketch nibs. However, when you use the Brause Rose nib, which is longer, the wide end of the overfeed will be fall short of the back of the Brause Rose nib.

You can position the overfeed two ways: holding all three pieces together or piece by piece. If piece by piece, press the underfeed into the pen, slide in the nib, then slide in the overfeed.

If you do it altogether, place the nib on the underfeed, place the overfeed on the nib, grip the two pieces together between your thumb and forefinger, press down on the overfeed with your thumb and slide it forwards or backwards to the right position for your nib, then press the unit into the front of the pen.

If the overfeed slides out of position, simply slide it back into position. 

Once everything is in place, fill the pen with ink, shake the pen to get the ink flowing, and start drawing. Turn and twist the pen to make ink climb onto the top of the nib and fill in the space between the overfeed and nib. If you intend to gain the full benefits of the overfeed and maximize the ink flow while you flex the nib, make sure there’s a lot of ink stored on top of the nib. It can get messy if too much ink is stored on top.

When this happens, tilt the pen back and let some of the ink flow back into the pen.

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