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OT: Question for the pen-makers and collectors

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  • OT: Question for the pen-makers and collectors

    I have several Esterbrook and Parker fountain pens. Most of them have the rubber reservoir "perished" (cracked, hard, split).

    Looking on the Internot for pen parts, I see lots of nibs and barrel parts. What I do NOT see are the reservoirs.

    These are the pens that have a lever on the side for refilling, or, in one case, a button on the end, under a screw-on cap. Pull the lever, or push the button, dip it into the ink, and let the lever or button go, which sucks ink up into the reservoir.

    Anyone know of sources?
    CNC machines only go through the motions

  • #2
    Google "fountain pen bladder" or "fountain pen sac". You'll find a bunch of them.

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    • #3
      I have a couple old fountain pens that i had refurbished at https://pentiques.com
      one was my mom’s an Eversharp from the 40’s and the other one was my grandfather’s a Watermans pen and pencil from the 30’s. They did a full restoration of them ,and straightened the nib on my mom’s. They did nice work. Give them a try
      Sole proprietor of Acme Buggy Whips Ltd.
      Specialty products for beating dead horses.

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      • #4
        Thanks, that found more hits. I'll have to figure out what size they are, not a big issue for standard shop measuring equipment, I'd think.

        Seems there is also the matter of material..... PVC looks good, but......
        CNC machines only go through the motions

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        • #5
          Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
          Thanks, that found more hits. I'll have to figure out what size they are, not a big issue for standard shop measuring equipment, I'd think.

          Seems there is also the matter of material..... PVC looks good, but......
          If you want originality, won't you want a bladder that will deteriorate just like the original?

          I like fountain pens too, have a number in the drawer that I've used over the years, and currently use a Waterman that was something of a special gift - or at least it has a story behind it. The last previous was a Pelikan that I also liked quite well.
          .
          "People will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time they will pick themselves up and carry on" : Winston Churchill

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          • #6
            Originally posted by TGTool View Post

            If you want originality, won't you want a bladder that will deteriorate just like the original?

            .................................
            I just want the silly pen to work, and write whan I want it to.

            As for the types.....Well, actually, it's complicated.......

            There seem to be latex, silicone, and PVC. Latex acts like the original, but is chancy. Apparently some of them will turn to goo and drench you in ink within anywhere from a few weeks, to several months. That sounds like an issue..... the pen companies presumably did not have that issue, they got theirs from good sources.

            Silicone is pretty good, but lousy in one category, it will allow the ink to dry out because it is permeable. Not good if you do not write a lot and so the ink may be in there a while.

            The PVC is quite good, except that it may damage/destroy some plastics.... so it's great unless it destroys the pen it is in, which it might.

            Great choices, it seems.

            https://www.vintagepens.com/FAQrepair/pen_sacs.shtml
            CNC machines only go through the motions

            Comment


            • #7
              Good luck with the repair. It's rather like the refrain from a Tom Waits song, "Two dead ends (in this case three) and you still got to choose."

              In any case, if it continues to provide service, that's success, and it's realistic to expect it will need repair again some time in the future - hopefully after we're gone and no longer care.
              .
              "People will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time they will pick themselves up and carry on" : Winston Churchill

              Comment


              • #8
                I was into fountain pens for a number of years back in the 2000s. Several Parker Vacumatics (my favorites), a Parker Duofold, a Morrison, a Mont Blanc, and others. They suited me and my work needs. I discovered that people notice and are curious, whether they ask or not. As work activities evolved, the fountain pens became unhandy, and I put them away.

                Practically all of my pens were resurrected from the dead, usually because of a deteriorated sac or diaphragm. The work was done by one or the other of these two fellows:

                Richard Binder
                (accessible on the Web, but apparently no longer doing repairs)

                Rick Horne (Google The Southern Scribe)

                If you are not going to use a pen regularly, it should be emptied and flushed after use. Otherwise, the ink will dry, the sac crack, and the pen will be forgotten at the back of the drawer to be resurrected only by some future estate sale purchaser.

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