I would like to produce an italic
f without the crossbar. Can I do this relatively straightforwardly?
This letter, esh (ʃ), is Unicode U+01A9, U+0283. The esh of
tipa.sty only looks good with Computer Modern—I’m need it in Times—and, like all tipa characters, it lacks an italic version. The picture below shows that the resulting mishmash: improper kerning (fixable, I know), wrong thickness of stem, and terminals (bobbly bits at top and bottom) insufficiently circular.
All these problems would go away if I could just create a character identical to
f in all respects, but without the crossbar. (This would obviously affect ligatures as well and I realize that I would need to address each ligatured
Linguistic typography falls well below professional standards (even from some of the top publishers): linguistics demands lots of odd symbols (IPA, dialectological, etc.) and these must be italicized in main text (which may be Times, Minion, or other). However,
tipa, the main means of accessing IPA in LaTeX, does not offer italics and exists only for Computer Modern. The fact most tex users are therefore forced to submit manuscripts that mix different fonts and shapes then meets the problem that publishing houses have not all invested in the right font sets or have not trained their copyeditors/typesetters to use them.
This might be more avoidable if there were (at least the bare bones) of font-independent specifications for (italic and roman) characters like ɳ (U+0273), ɲ (U+0272), ʁ (U+0281), and so on, which users could tweak to their personal ends. In consequence, general answers to the
f question are just as welcome as specific ones.
Update. The “General issue” is now a separate question.