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Jinhao Fountain Pens

Jinhao is a Chinese maker of inexpensive fountain pens. I have dozens of them. They are of remarkably high quality given the price. They are beautiful pens that often work well right out of the box. If not, a full disassembly, deep cleaning, and careful reassembly will usually fix them. Unlike most nibs, Jinhao nibs rarely need adjustment or polishing to work well and write smoothly. My experience is that they’re fine right out of the box. I don’t see how Jinhao achieves such high all-around quality this for such a low price but they do.

Along the way, I’ve made some notes for myself on nib and feed sizes and which Jinhao pen models fit what.

Jinhao makes some pens for #5 nibs, some for the considerably larger #6 nib, and a few for #8 nibs. (For reference, a TWSBI Eco takes a #5 nib.) While nibs are interchangeable between brands, feeds are not. Jinhao makes three kinds of feeds, a 5mm feed for #5 nibbed pens, a 6mm feed for #6 nibbed pens, and a feed for pens with #8 nibs. Jinhao feeds are exceptionally long compared to other brands, which I see as a good thing because it holds more ink. A long feed like that means its less likely to experience ink starvation when using broad nibs of flex nibs that need high ink flow.

If you’re a do-it-yourself pen jockey, I only have one warning or recommendation. It’s important in every fountain pen for the nib’s breather hole to be properly positioned on the feed. Some pens like the TWSBI Eco have helpful alignment guides molded into the feed. Just place the nib exactly where it fits on the feed and shove it into the section. Can’t miss. Not so with Jinhaos. Jinhao pens have an alignment feature so the feed fits properly into the section but no help with nib alignment is provided. Nib alignment can be challenging. I use magnification, bright light, and patience to get it right. And you must get it exactly right or the pen will misbehave. Once you get it, it’s rock solid but be prepared for a challenge fiddling with it.

The vast majority of Jinhao pens come equipped with M (medium) nibs. If you want a different line width you’ll have to change the nib yourself or get a pen jockey to do it for you. Jinhao makes nibs in several widths but they must be bought and installed separately.

Below is a list of Jinhao pen models with #5 nibs:

82, 163, 165, 188, 250, 301, 500, 599, 601, 950, 991, 992, 5000, 5099, 8802, 9009

Note that some model 82 and 992 pens seem to need a slightly larger nib, like a 5-1/2. A #5-1/2 or #5 will fit. If the fit seems a little off, some slight tweaks to the base (heel) of the nib will fix the problem.

Below is a list of Jinhao pen models with #6 nibs:

100, 159, 316, 450, X450, 750, X750, T1, C1

Below is a list of Jinhao pen models with #8 nibs:

X159, 9019

Please comment with any additional Jinhao model information, tips, or corrections. Thank you.


  1. Toga

    Just a heads up, the X159 is a #8 size nib, as is the new 9019.

    I believe the 82 is also a #5, but it’ll take the #5.5 nibs from Fountain Pen Revolution etc., too.

    • Phil

      Aha! Thanks for the tip. I’ll fix it.

    • Phil

      Fixed for now. I’ll have to acquire a 159 and/or 9019 and get some experience with it. Thanks for the info.

  2. Judah

    The Jinhao 159 in my collection (metal bodied, bought in 2018) takes a #6 nib. Unless they changed that when they introduced the x159, it’s only the plastic x model that takes the #8.

    • Phil

      Well, then. The 159 is a model I don’t have. Neither a 159 nor X159. I’ll put a note about it at the end of the post. I don’t want to spread misinformation.

  3. Howard

    Useful post. I have a number of Jinhao pens myself and learnt a thing or two here.

    • Phil

      I’m glad you found it useful. Thanks.

  4. Scott Hicks

    Ok, I have a thing for very fine point Japanese made pens, but now this made me want to try a fountain!

    • Phil

      Good! I’m glad you’re curious and I’d recommend giving fountain pens a try. Jinhao pens are so inexpensive that cost isn’t an issue. By the way, there are numerous fountain pen makers in Japan like Sailor and Nakaya. They tend to be expensive.

      Be aware that my 60 years of experience with fountain pens has shown me that cost and how good a pen is for writing are unrelated things. A fountain pen is a very simple device. If set up correctly it will work well. Some of my best writers are old Sheaffer school pens I picked up at garage sales for a dollar. Once cleaned and set up properly, nib adjusted and/or polished, nib and feed set up, they write as well as a pen you can spend $1,000 on. Conversely, if the $1,000 pen is not set up properly it will be a poor writer, hard starter, scratchy nib, stall due to breathing problems, on and on.

      I hope you give it a try. The best single resource for learning is a very large forum called Fountain Pen Network.

      Best regards,

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