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Thread: Polishing properly?

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    Default Polishing properly?

    Does anyone know some good ways to polish mb precious resin? I donít really mind the micro scratches, but there are some scuffs that detract from the pen. And no, Iíd rather not send my pen to MB.


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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Novus 3-Step Plastic Polish, small kits available on Amazon. Use sparingly, go easy at first, but this is not highly abrasive. #1 is a clear liquid cleaner/polish, #2 has just a bit of silica abrasive suspended in a lotion. I would try only doing 2 and 1 first; if the area still is scuffed, then try #3 - 2 - 1. I would also highly suggest you do this on a junk pen or some other object before touching an MB - not that the product is bad, but user error can be a thing.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Novus 3-Step Plastic Polish, small kits available on Amazon. Use sparingly, go easy at first, but this is not highly abrasive. #1 is a clear liquid cleaner/polish, #2 has just a bit of silica abrasive suspended in a lotion. I would try only doing 2 and 1 first; if the area still is scuffed, then try #3 - 2 - 1. I would also highly suggest you do this on a junk pen or some other object before touching an MB - not that the product is bad, but user error can be a thing.
    Are there any safer ways? I will try the 3-Step polish, but there is always the chance I might screw up.


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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Are there any safer ways? I will try the 3-Step polish, but there is always the chance I might screw up.
    Sure: just buff it with a very soft cotton cloth. Buff it repeatedly like that, by hand, with nothing more than the cloth and you might have some lustre and smooth out the surface. At some point, though, you are talking about a roughed-up surface, right next to smooth, polished surfaces, that needs to get cleaned up. The three step I gave you is only about the next step from a plain cloth. I'd also just try #1, which is not abrasive at all, and I'd try it on a similar item or - barring that - maybe just on the blind cap (end of barrel) where it wouldn't be obtrusive.

    See, the thing is, the reason people send stuff to professionals is because the pros know how to do this. When you do it yourself, there aren't any guarantees. But what I say above, used wisely, should cause no issues.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

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    Senior Member Wile E Coyote's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    You're not getting those scratches out with Novus. If you don't sand them first, you'll end up with shiny polished gouges.

    If you do screw it up, you still have the option to send it to MB.

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wile E Coyote View Post
    You're not getting those scratches out with Novus. If you don't sand them first, you'll end up with shiny polished gouges....
    + 1

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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wile E Coyote View Post
    You're not getting those scratches out with Novus. If you don't sand them first, you'll end up with shiny polished gouges.
    Well, ok. Penmainiac, listen to these guys. To my eyes they didn't seem that deep, and while I might try a limited amount of work with the polish, I'd never trust myself to use micromesh on a pen this quality. If you can wait a few months, I know a fellow who does very good exterior repair work on pens, but he is taking a break for the moment.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    ...I'd never trust myself to use micromesh on a pen this quality....
    + 1 again. When I want a high polish on a pen I'm selling, I have a colleague with the supplies, including jeweler's rouge and a buffing wheel, do the honors. I'm not patient enough.

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wile E Coyote View Post
    You're not getting those scratches out with Novus. If you don't sand them first, you'll end up with shiny polished gouges.

    If you do screw it up, you still have the option to send it to MB.
    What do you mean?


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    Senior Member KBeezie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Wile E Coyote View Post
    You're not getting those scratches out with Novus. If you don't sand them first, you'll end up with shiny polished gouges.

    If you do screw it up, you still have the option to send it to MB.
    What do you mean?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    The Novus stuff is a 'light scratch' remover type of deal. If you try to tackle an area of slightly deeper scratches than the rest of the pen you'll pretty much just keep smoothing it out where the deeper part will remain as the whole thing gets polished. The only way around that is to sand down the surface area so that it's level enough to be polished evenly.

    In those cases it may be best to just live with the wear until you can send it out to someone who can professionally polish it even (or fill and polish if such a thing is possible on that era's material).

    The option to send to MB is usually a flat rate, as of today based on this service chart : https://www.montblanc.com/content/da...2019-WI-US.pdf

    The area shown in orange would be a flat price of $100 (a level one service), and usually because a 149 is still a 149 in Montblanc's eyes, they'll just replace whatever part they feel needs replacing (which means some people have sent out vintage 149s to have it come back with a brass threaded piston instead of a plastic one changing it's weight, or having the nib replaced with a brand new one if they deemed it in need of replacing to meet their expectations). So one of the things to make sure to tell them is to not replace the original nib if you like how it is (and generally speaking that's a good part to always keep even if they end up making the whole pen modern-ish).

    So yea, you can screw it up (better not to in the first place doing a DIY stuff yourself without experience), but you have that option for a bit of money (not a lot of other brands/models have that option available).

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by KBeezie View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Wile E Coyote View Post
    You're not getting those scratches out with Novus. If you don't sand them first, you'll end up with shiny polished gouges.

    If you do screw it up, you still have the option to send it to MB.
    What do you mean?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    The Novus stuff is a 'light scratch' remover type of deal. If you try to tackle an area of slightly deeper scratches than the rest of the pen you'll pretty much just keep smoothing it out where the deeper part will remain as the whole thing gets polished. The only way around that is to sand down the surface area so that it's level enough to be polished evenly.

    In those cases it may be best to just live with the wear until you can send it out to someone who can professionally polish it even (or fill and polish if such a thing is possible on that era's material).

    The option to send to MB is usually a flat rate, as of today based on this service chart : https://www.montblanc.com/content/da...2019-WI-US.pdf

    The area shown in orange would be a flat price of $100 (a level one service), and usually because a 149 is still a 149 in Montblanc's eyes, they'll just replace whatever part they feel needs replacing (which means some people have sent out vintage 149s to have it come back with a brass threaded piston instead of a plastic one changing it's weight, or having the nib replaced with a brand new one if they deemed it in need of replacing to meet their expectations). So one of the things to make sure to tell them is to not replace the original nib if you like how it is (and generally speaking that's a good part to always keep even if they end up making the whole pen modern-ish).

    So yea, you can screw it up (better not to in the first place doing a DIY stuff yourself without experience), but you have that option for a bit of money (not a lot of other brands/models have that option available).
    I donít think I have any deep scratches, from my view, they look relatively light, is there anyway to tell?


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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post

    I donít think I have any deep scratches, from my view, they look relatively light, is there anyway to tell?


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    Does your fingernails bump along them?

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by KBeezie View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post

    I donít think I have any deep scratches, from my view, they look relatively light, is there anyway to tell?


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    Does your fingernails bump along them?
    Not really, they just feel kind of rough


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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Not really, they just feel kind of rough
    Ok, I'm going to be really blunt: you seem to be very inexperienced in all of this, and you've picked yourself a nice pen. If you really want to have that nice pen be a nice pen for a long time, don't cheap out, don't try to DIY, don't guess, don't take chances. Get someone who knows what they are doing, or MB themselves, to do the work if you want it fixed. Otherwise, just live with it as a pen that has already got some miles on it.

    The worst thing is to buy something nice and make it worse when you don't know what you are doing.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

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    Senior Member KBeezie's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Not really, they just feel kind of rough
    ... If you really want to have that nice pen be a nice pen for a long time, don't cheap out, don't try to DIY, don't guess, don't take chances. Get someone who knows what they are doing, or MB themselves, to do the work if you want it fixed. Otherwise, just live with it as a pen that has already got some miles on it.
    This if you want it all pretty and such. You can DIY 'minor' stuff like flushing with water (the usual pen maintenance expected), but if you find you can't live with the little imperfections, have it sent for an overhaul. Montblanc themselves is pretty straight forward, there's no real discussion. A private expert/professional will likely be more accustomed to entertaining some Q&A and may be able to offer additional services (ie: tuning your nib to write to your wetness preference, or style of writing).

    A properly professionally restored pen that is already craftmanship in quality, can be expected to last 50+ more years with proper care.

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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by KBeezie View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Not really, they just feel kind of rough
    ... If you really want to have that nice pen be a nice pen for a long time, don't cheap out, don't try to DIY, don't guess, don't take chances. Get someone who knows what they are doing, or MB themselves, to do the work if you want it fixed. Otherwise, just live with it as a pen that has already got some miles on it.
    This if you want it all pretty and such
    I'm only responding to the topic of this particular thread, which has to do with the cosmetic blemishes. I realize there are issues in other threads from the same own regarding this pen.
    "When Men differ in Opinion, both Sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Publick;
    and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter."

    ~ Benjamin Franklin

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    I've used Mother's Mag and Aluminum polish on all of my Esterbrook restorations. I just had it for another hobby and decided to try it. It has produced a nice luster on all of the plastics including black.

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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Szanto View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by penmainiac View Post
    Not really, they just feel kind of rough
    Ok, I'm going to be really blunt: you seem to be very inexperienced in all of this, and you've picked yourself a nice pen. If you really want to have that nice pen be a nice pen for a long time, don't cheap out, don't try to DIY, don't guess, don't take chances. Get someone who knows what they are doing, or MB themselves, to do the work if you want it fixed. Otherwise, just live with it as a pen that has already got some miles on it.

    The worst thing is to buy something nice and make it worse when you don't know what you are doing.
    Iíve polished my 51s, and sonnets, I just havenít tried polishing ďPrecious ResinĒ yet.


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    Senior Member Deb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    There's a difference between polishing and scratch removal. The latter requires some patience and skill if you don't want flat spots or obvious depressions in barrel or cap.
    Regards,
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    Default Re: Polishing properly?

    If you've polished Parker 51 pens using some sort of plastic polish, then you could also carefully use that on the Mb resin. However, first you could try starting with something simple like a Sunshine cloth. I believe Ron Zorn once said that was all he used.
    I use a Sunshine cloth first to see how well the plastic comes up, then consider using Novus or other plastic polishes only if there are deeper scratches.

    Sending the pen to Mb would mean it would come back looking like a new pen for a very reasonable price, and it would get a full service and replacement parts included in that fee. You could always say you didn't want the feed changed if you want to keep it as original as possible.

    Edit: I just spotted that the Sunshine cloth has already been discussed on your other thread about the section collar...
    Last edited by Chrissy; February 11th, 2020 at 10:48 AM.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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