View Full Version : Fountain Pen Restoration
12-13-2009, 04:35 PM
I recently have had two 1930's era fountain pens come into my possession. They appear to be a Sheaffer Balance Oversize, and a Conklin, perhaps a ladies pen. Does anyone have any personal experience with, or knowledge of, a reputable fountain pen restoration service? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.
12-13-2009, 04:43 PM
The fountainpenhospital.com does this type of work. You can also find quite a few repairmen in this link.
12-13-2009, 04:49 PM
If you want to wait 4 or 5 months you can send them to Richard Binder(richardspens.com) or John Mottishaw(nibs.com).
Ron Zorn at mainstreetpens.com does good work and his que isn't quite as long as the other 2. Mikeitwork.com does good work (he used to work for the sailor pen company in Japan), Joel Hamilton and Sheryll Tyree do good work http://www.ink-pen.com/contact.php
And there is a member here Tom Pike that does pen repair, I have had more than a few pens fixed by him, you might want to check with him as well.
The pen world is like the shaving world, there are some great vendors out there for you to choose from.
12-14-2009, 02:58 PM
I just found a Parker Vacumatic (in my desk drawer, of all places!) that I can't get the nib off. Actually I'm assuming the "Vacumatic" refers to the pen, but it may only refer to the nib. The only markings I can find are on the nib.
It looks like the type that the nib and nib carrier (that plastic part that the nib sits on and that draws the ink into the nib) unscrew, but I can't get it to move. I've soaked it in warm water and some pale blue ink came out, but the nib still won't move. Maybe it has a lot of ink dried out in it and seizing it up, or maybe it doesn't unscrew. I don't want to force it or break it. Any ideas? Keep soaking it? Try boiling water? Try soaking it with some other solvent? [:mad3:]Clamp it in a vise and use a pipe wrench?[/:mad3:]
12-14-2009, 04:21 PM
Maybe it has a lot of ink dried out in it and seizing it up, or maybe it doesn't unscrew. I don't want to force it or break it. Any ideas? Keep soaking it? Try boiling water? Try soaking it with some other solvent? [:mad3:]Clamp it in a vise and use a pipe wrench?[/:mad3:]
I've only restored a few pens, but I'd let it sit overnight in a cup of water. If that doesn't do it, try warming the threads with a hair drier, but I wouldn't use boiling water or chemicals, as it may damage the body of the pen.
Also, be prepared to dig out all the likely dried-up ink in the barrel once you get the nib off. You may just be able to fill-and-rinse with water if the diaphram has not deteriorated.
12-14-2009, 04:40 PM
Just found this on http://www.rickconner.net/penspotters/parker.vacumatic.html:
As with any old pen, you should assume that any Vac found in the wild will require some restoration. This is emphatically NOT a job for a first-time do-it-yourselfer. The diaphragm replacement is not straightforward and requires a special "vac tool" for wrenching out the filler unit (these are available from Fountain Pen Hospital (http://www.fountainpenhospital.com/) and other sources). Replacing the filler properly is even trickier than removing it, and removing the remains of the old diaphragm (along with its tiny locking bead) can be very annoying. You risk damage to the filler unit (particularly if it is one of the later plastic ones) if you are not extremely careful with heat and pressure. Worse, the sections on earlier Vacs are not removable, so it is hard to knock out and reset the nib and feed. In short, for your peace of mind, I'd recommend turning over your new Vac to a knowledgeable and capable pen restorer. If you insist on doing it yourself, you'll find complete instructions in Frank Dubiel's invaluable book, called simply "Da Book" (http://www.rickconner.net/penspotters/bibliography.html)."
(Always ask where you may get a direct answer, THEN Google):blushing:
Anyway, it looks as if this old piece of crap that's been knocking about various desk drawers and Robertson Marmalade jars for years may actually have some value. I better stop playing and maybe get an expert's opinion.
I'll transfer my inept fumblings to my Esterbrook pump style (with a cracked and split tube). At least this one I know I used in high school. Or maybe later, as there are not so many teethmarks on it. I always used to chew on my pens. I still do but the cheap throwaways nowadays are strong enough to stand up to it, without leaving me with ink on my chin :sneaky2:
12-31-2009, 04:42 PM
I found two businesses in Toronto that have people they send repairs out to. Has anyone used Laywine's or Sleuth & Statesman's repair service? Good results? Bad news? Any other pen repair services near Oshawa, Ontario that they can recommend?
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