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"Here is an informative book about drafting techniques and equipment used in Navy drafting shops. It used to be available as a free download from the U.S. Navy Advancement Center, but the site is now restricted to the U.S. Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard.
NEW PAGE Stencil Fonts FREE and commercial Army, Navy & Airforce style typefaces has moved. [click here]
Illustrator Draftsman
Fig. 2-30, Nib types, ruling pen, nibs adjustments
Fig. 2-31, Detail of swede pen
Fig. 2-41, Holding a reservoir pen
Fig. 2-67, Brush nomenclature
Illustrator Draftsman 3 & 2

Volume 1 Equipment

Nonresident Training Course
Published by: Naval Education and Training Professional Development and Technology Center, January 1997.

»This is one of four in the US Navy Draftsman (DM) training series. Volume 1 is an overview of general shop administration, available equipment, required operator adjustments, and equipment maintenance. Knowing the capabilities and limitations of the equipment before creating artwork is essential.«
Chapter 2, Basic Equipment
covers the following topics:
  •Cased Instruments
  •Special Cased Instruments
  •Drawing Aids
  •Basic Consumables
pdfDownload Illustrator Draftsman, Vol.1, Chapter 2, "Basic Equipment" at the U.S. Navy Advancement Center:
(70 pages, 692KB)

Vol. 1 — Chapter 2 — Page 2-32


Pens and pen nibs are used throughout Navy drafting shops. The proper care and correct use can prolong the life of a pen nib. Pen nibs are made by many different manufacturers in an endless variety of styles.

Pen nibs
Pen nibs are detachable from a handle or drawing instrument. They maybe uniform in shape producing a line of equal width regardless of direction of the stroke, or they mabe irregularly shaped to produce a line of unequal width depending on the direction of the stroke. There are pen nibs used exclusively for lettering and nibs used for drawing. Before you use a pen nib, moisten it slightly to remove the manufacturer's protective oil. To fill a pen nib, supply ink by dropper or brush to extend 3/16 inch [5 mm]up the nib blade.

Figure 2-38 shows five different lettering nibs. Notice how changing the direction of the stroke can change the width and character of the line.

Fig. 2-39 - Common nib shapes.
Figure 2-38. - Common nib shapes.
Figure 2-39 shows quill nibs used for drawing. They have more spring than a lettering nib. Quill pens produce an extremely fine line.
Fig. 2-39 - Quill nibs.
Figure 2-39. - Quill nibs.

Vol. 1 — Chapter 2 — Page 2-35

Pen care
Pen nibs and reservoir pens must be kept clean. Crusted ink will ruin a drawing that is in progress, rust a nib, and permanently freeze a technical pen. Pen nibs are easily cleaned in warm water with a mild detergent. Use water and ammonia to remove stubborn ink, When you are using an ultrasonic cleanser, do not leave a reservoir pen in the cleanser for a long time. Heat from the vibrating cycles will melt the retaining cap. Before you clean a reservoir pen, consider the following guidelines:

thoroughly clean the pen before periods of nonuse,
disassemble the pen only for thorough cleaning, and
handle all parts carefully.

DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Nib Care Nib Care — Cleaning, Grinding and Sharpening Steel Pen Nibs »read more

U.S. Navy Advancement CenterDownload the Illustrator Draftsman (DM) Training Courses at the US Navy Advancement Center:
(/!\may take hours to download via modem)

The FREE Training Courses web site is now restricted to U.S. Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard.
*DM, Vol.1, Equipment
NAVEDTRA No:14063 (372 pages, 2.6MB)
*DM, Vol. 2, Standard Drafting Practices and Theory
NAVEDTRA No:14276 (488 pages, 14.9MB)
*DM, Vol.3, Executionable Practices
NAVEDTRA No:14262 (586 pages, 19.9MB)
*DM, Vol.4, Presentation Graphics
NAVEDTRA No:14065 (276 pages, 6.2MB)
*Blueprint Reading and Sketching
NAVEDTRA No:14040 (200 pages, 5.5MB)
*The training courses are available on a cd-rom from

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latest update 2 Apr 2005

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All images, characters, logos and trademarks are property of their respective owners and are used here either with permission or in an editorial fashion only. Content on this site is 1999-2005 BLAM®. Hans Presto is a Swedish lettering-artist and art-teacher. BLAM design supplies new and vintage steel pen nibs (pen points) to Scandinavian cartoonists and calligraphers. This web site is not affiliated with the US navy in any way. This is an independent site containing information about pens, fonts and calligraphy tools.

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