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View Full Version : Vintage Esterbrook (1940s maybe?) removing nib question



Cathy Johnson (Kate)
January 28th, 2015, 12:53 PM
I won a beautiful old Esterbrook with the "mackeral sky" design, in green, which the seller described as being in great condition.

Well, if you don't count a sprung replacement nib...it won't even hold enough ink to make a line, it's apparently a Curve brand (!?!), gold plated, and as I said, sprung. It feels as if it would be scratchy, in any case.

I was hoping for another 9128 nib like the gray mackeral sky pen I have, though the seller didn't specify.

I've seen replacement nib SECTIONS, but it it possible to just remove the feed and nib and put another nib in there?

TIA!

kbrede
January 28th, 2015, 01:25 PM
This video looks promising. I'm sure someone will speak up if the instruction is wrong.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCuVpENf_1c

Kent

Cathy Johnson (Kate)
January 28th, 2015, 01:39 PM
This video looks promising. I'm sure someone will speak up if the instruction is wrong.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCuVpENf_1c

Kent


Thanks Kent...I'll check it out! After I wrote I realized that SOMEbody replaced the nib, because that's sure not an original Esterbrook. I just didn't want to break the pen, because it IS handsome.

Cathy Johnson (Kate)
January 28th, 2015, 01:46 PM
And oops, yep, I could unscrew the nib SECTION as the video shows, but I would like to be able to get the nasty metal nib about of that section and replace it with a decent nib. I've done that a lot with Noodler's pens where you seat the feed and nib into the pen itself, but not sure what to do here...

Jon Szanto
January 28th, 2015, 01:58 PM
TBH, I think you'll be far better off just unscrewing the entire nib unit and picking up one that is what you'd like (for tip size, etc). You can go directly to Anderson Pens if you like, as I know they are very knowledgeable about Esties and stock nibs (units) for sale, or you could look on eBay, as there are always many for sale. Trying to replace just the nib into one of the collar/feed units can be a real pain and is only truly worth it for a special project.

Cathy Johnson (Kate)
January 28th, 2015, 04:53 PM
TBH, I think you'll be far better off just unscrewing the entire nib unit and picking up one that is what you'd like (for tip size, etc). You can go directly to Anderson Pens if you like, as I know they are very knowledgeable about Esties and stock nibs (units) for sale, or you could look on eBay, as there are always many for sale. Trying to replace just the nib into one of the collar/feed units can be a real pain and is only truly worth it for a special project.

Thanks, Jon, it probably isn't worth it...it was originally one of their $1 pens, and I only paid $13.50 for it. The nib sections I've seen on eBay with the 9128 nib cost several times that!

Jon Szanto
January 28th, 2015, 05:02 PM
Well, yes, the 9128 is one of the more desired, and less common, nib units. Just keep your eyes peeled, especially on eBay, and you might come up with something that would return the pen to writerdom.

whych
January 28th, 2015, 05:47 PM
If you want a useable pen and are not concerned that it has an original Estie nib, you can push the nib and feed out of the sleeve and replace it with another nib that fits.
Just make sure you soak the nib unit for a few days to get rid of any dried ink first. Cycling in an ultrasonic cleaner over the time also helps get rid of the old ink.

Farmboy
January 28th, 2015, 11:23 PM
This seems so complicated. Good thing the new Esterbrooks have fixed nibs...

whych
January 29th, 2015, 01:51 AM
This seems so complicated. Good thing the new Esterbrooks have fixed nibs...
Yes, and about as unrewarding as restoring and resaccing your first pen. ;)

Perhaps you have suggestions on what nibs fit the longer Estie feeds? ....

Dreck
January 29th, 2015, 05:05 AM
This seems so complicated. Good thing the new Esterbrooks have fixed nibs...

It really isn't. I removed the nib from my Esterbrook J by accident, as I was trying to unscrew the entire unit. I simply slid in a nicer nib, and haven't had a moment's trouble with it since (unless you count still being unable to unscrew the unit an issue. ha!).

Cathy Johnson (Kate)
January 29th, 2015, 08:26 AM
If you want a useable pen and are not concerned that it has an original Estie nib, you can push the nib and feed out of the sleeve and replace it with another nib that fits.
Just make sure you soak the nib unit for a few days to get rid of any dried ink first. Cycling in an ultrasonic cleaner over the time also helps get rid of the old ink.

Thank you...I may give that a try, I have several nibs that look like they might fit. If it doesn't work I haven't lost much.

Cathy Johnson (Kate)
January 29th, 2015, 08:30 AM
Well, I may just have to give this a try, Dreck, thanks...off to soak my nib section...

welch
January 30th, 2015, 10:28 PM
Slow down here! Esterbrook encouraged owners to buy nibs. That's why the nib unit can be unscrewed and why the company made offered about 40 different nibs of varying size, shape, and quality. "The world's most personal pen", was one advertising slogan: a buyer was encouraged to select the right nib, and put it on a pen-body. Skim the Esterbrook advertisements on Ebay. In the early '50s, it is as if the company made pens to complement their "renew points".

Try the Andersons first...although Ebay might be the place to find a 9128 nib. I can't write with anything but a medium, so the 2668 and 9668 are perfect...haven't looked for anything else.

Procyon
March 4th, 2015, 10:43 AM
I just repaired a dollar pen. There was an obstruction in the feed, so I knocked the nib and feed out of the section. I decided to leave the nib unit screwed in and to treat it as any other pen while I did this. I thought that would be the safest way to keep from breaking something. It turned out that the nib was pretty corroded, and the ink channel in the feed was indeed blocked. After cleaning the nib and using an X-acto knife on the feed, the pen is working again. I realize I could have just replaced the screw-in nib unit, but I wanted to fix the old one. It was actually quite easy to do.

Brian Anderson
March 11th, 2015, 11:52 AM
I just repaired a dollar pen. There was an obstruction in the feed, so I knocked the nib and feed out of the section. I decided to leave the nib unit screwed in and to treat it as any other pen while I did this. I thought that would be the safest way to keep from breaking something. It turned out that the nib was pretty corroded, and the ink channel in the feed was indeed blocked. After cleaning the nib and using an X-acto knife on the feed, the pen is working again. I realize I could have just replaced the screw-in nib unit, but I wanted to fix the old one. It was actually quite easy to do.

While this method can work, you have to be careful because you can crack a section doing it this way. I used to do this with bad sections, but kept cracking them. Just be careful.

Scrawler
March 11th, 2015, 12:59 PM
I use an old section as an anchor to hold the nib unit while I knock the feed out. Beware that there are several sorts of plastic used, and some nib units have a pin, rather than a crimp to hold it in place. As Brian pointed out above, you can break them, so do not use the section that is in your pen.