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Thread: Dry writing Parker 51

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    Default Dry writing Parker 51

    Here's a comparison between a parker 51 I sent for repair to fix the breather tube and dryness issue and a pilot vanishing point fine nib with the same ink. Should I send it back to get the nib adjusted? I'm worried without removing the hood I'll scratch up the bottom of the nib inserting a brass shim or feeler gauge. The hood was re-shellaced when assembled after fixing too I believe. I'm disappointed in how pale it is with pretty much all inks I've tried so far, blue blacks become cloudy greys. IMG_20201108_185500912~3.jpg


    Actually, my mistake. The vanishing point has tsuki-yo in it, which should be a lighter color than shin kai.
    Last edited by linkoiram; November 8th, 2020 at 07:08 PM.

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    Senior Member RobJohnson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    If you write for a page does the flow dry up completely?

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by RobJohnson View Post
    If you write for a page does the flow dry up completely?
    Doesn't seem like it, wrote a couple of paragraphs and some squiggles and it seemed fairly consistent.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Please don't try to adjust it by sticking anything up the hood. You will be more likely to break the point off the hood or the hood itself than do anything else.
    If it was my pen I would return it to whoever adjusted it and say it's flow still isn't right.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Perhaps try a wetter ink like Waterman.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
    Perhaps try a wetter ink like Waterman.
    I have tried that. I was using waterman blue black before and that was still quite light. Lighter than that pilot ink there.

    I'm not a fan of "chasing inks" as Bo Bo Olson puts it (within reason).
    Last edited by linkoiram; November 9th, 2020 at 06:33 AM.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Definitely remove the hood if youíre going to tinker with the nib. You risk snapping a tine or losing tipping otherwise.

    That said, itís not necessarily a nib problem. It could be that the shell is sitting too tight on the top of your nib. You can heat it up safely with hot water from the tap and then give the sides of the shell a pinch. Sometimes thatís enough to improve the flow.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    Definitely remove the hood if youíre going to tinker with the nib. You risk snapping a tine or losing tipping otherwise.

    That said, itís not necessarily a nib problem. It could be that the shell is sitting too tight on the top of your nib. You can heat it up safely with hot water from the tap and then give the sides of the shell a pinch. Sometimes thatís enough to improve the flow.
    I may do this. Although I would prefer to send it back to Danny, I feel as if I am capable of doing an adjustment like that myself as long as he didn't stick the hood on too tight.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by linkoiram View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    Definitely remove the hood if youíre going to tinker with the nib. You risk snapping a tine or losing tipping otherwise.

    That said, itís not necessarily a nib problem. It could be that the shell is sitting too tight on the top of your nib. You can heat it up safely with hot water from the tap and then give the sides of the shell a pinch. Sometimes thatís enough to improve the flow.
    I may do this. Although I would prefer to send it back to Danny, I feel as if I am capable of doing an adjustment like that myself as long as he didn't stick the hood on too tight.
    If the hood has been shellacked on you would now need to heat the pen in hot water until you can unscrew it. For this reason I never shellacked my 51 hood on and it was never a problem.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    Definitely remove the hood if youíre going to tinker with the nib. You risk snapping a tine or losing tipping otherwise.

    That said, itís not necessarily a nib problem. It could be that the shell is sitting too tight on the top of your nib. You can heat it up safely with hot water from the tap and then give the sides of the shell a pinch. Sometimes thatís enough to improve the flow.
    The plastic is pretty darn durable on 51s, would I get any visible deformation with heating and pinching the hood? How would I know whether it had done anything?

    Would a small file work for taking some material out from the inside of the hood? I've heard this recommended in the past to help ink flow.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by linkoiram View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by guyy View Post
    Definitely remove the hood if youíre going to tinker with the nib. You risk snapping a tine or losing tipping otherwise.

    That said, itís not necessarily a nib problem. It could be that the shell is sitting too tight on the top of your nib. You can heat it up safely with hot water from the tap and then give the sides of the shell a pinch. Sometimes thatís enough to improve the flow.
    The plastic is pretty darn durable on 51s, would I get any visible deformation with heating and pinching the hood? How would I know whether it had done anything?

    Would a small file work for taking some material out from the inside of the hood? I've heard this recommended in the past to help ink flow.
    I wouldn't risk using a file to take any material out from the inside of the hood. I would rather try removing and replacing the hood first. It could even be a tiny dot of shellac in the wrong place.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Somewhat related, but what is the general procedure to widen tines? I used to use brass shim but that's harder to control than stainless steel feeler gauge. Does the feeler gauge scratch the inside edge of the tines such that it needs work to repair? Should I shy away from using it from now on? That's my MO whenever I need to do that kind of work.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Unless youíre looking very carefully, youíre not going to notice any difference in your shell from before and after you pinch the shell. (By the way, do it with your fingers and refrain from using tools). You can always repeat the process and pinch the top and bottom to undo what youíve done.

    I use my fingers for widening tines. It is more difficult with tiny nibs like the 51, but nonetheless possible.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by linkoiram View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Naill View Post
    Perhaps try a wetter ink like Waterman.
    I have tried that. I was using waterman blue black before and that was still quite light. Lighter than that pilot ink there.

    I'm not a fan of "chasing inks" as Bo Bo Olson puts it (within reason).
    I get it, I started with Pelikan and moved to Waterman black and blue. It is the only ink I own. My experience was that the pens were not as dry. YMMV is certainly applicable. If you want a professional restore source, I've used Parker51. http://parker51.com/index.php/repairs/

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Here is my big giant suggestion that you start with diagnosis and eliminate the easy to address issues first. Chrissy's advice about not "sticking anything up the hood to adjust it" sounds like good advice in both medicine and mechanics, but it applies to fountain pens as well. Are you sure that there isn't an obstruction? 70 year old pens that have just been worked on are notorious for having some piece of 70 year old crap get dislodged, but not flushed away. Could also be a bit of sealant stuck somewhere. A good regiment of flushing and some warm water soaking is tedious, but a good place to start. Also, once you work on it where you move any parts, you kind of lose your right to send it back to get adjustments under your original work order.

    As to using a shim to widen a 51 nib, I would shy away from it. Damage to slit, dislodged tipping and even cracks at the vent are pretty easy. Moving those short stout tines laterally takes a lot of force. If it only opens up when the tines are pushed up into the hood, then you have issues that I think would have been addressed when the pen was serviced. I have only heard good things if it is the Danny that I am thinking of, and concur that sending it back makes sense. If you want to work on it, you could always find out what type of sealant was used and the recommended removal method, as you know who did the work.

    With my vintage pens, I kind of have settled on using inks of similar properties, with the dry writers being the dry writers and the wet ones being the wet ones. One of the advantages of having a gazillion pens.

    Have a good one,

    Bob

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Did you "burp" it when you filled it?

    To fill the pen you need to immerse the nib into the ink bottle, squeeze the convertor four of five times - and leave the pen in the ink for ten to twenty seconds to allow the ink to rise.

    You should then "burp it" (squeeze some ink back out) after you have filled it. If you don't do this, you can get air bubbles in the feed and the feeder tube which impedes inkflow (you get an airlock)- and makes the P51 a dry writer.

    I had a p51 that developed this problem, and it was because I wasn't filling it properly.

    Before you take anything apart - try filling it in the manner I have described - it might make a difference.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by linkoiram View Post
    Somewhat related, but what is the general procedure to widen tines? I used to use brass shim but that's harder to control than stainless steel feeler gauge. Does the feeler gauge scratch the inside edge of the tines such that it needs work to repair? Should I shy away from using it from now on? That's my MO whenever I need to do that kind of work.
    The brass shims that I use are very fine. Finer than any of my OH's steel feeler gauges. I start with one that's as flexible as a piece of paper.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by Seattleite View Post
    Here is my big giant suggestion that you start with diagnosis and eliminate the easy to address issues first. Chrissy's advice about not "sticking anything up the hood to adjust it" sounds like good advice in both medicine and mechanics, but it applies to fountain pens as well. Are you sure that there isn't an obstruction? 70 year old pens that have just been worked on are notorious for having some piece of 70 year old crap get dislodged, but not flushed away. Could also be a bit of sealant stuck somewhere. A good regiment of flushing and some warm water soaking is tedious, but a good place to start. Also, once you work on it where you move any parts, you kind of lose your right to send it back to get adjustments under your original work order.

    As to using a shim to widen a 51 nib, I would shy away from it. Damage to slit, dislodged tipping and even cracks at the vent are pretty easy. Moving those short stout tines laterally takes a lot of force. If it only opens up when the tines are pushed up into the hood, then you have issues that I think would have been addressed when the pen was serviced. I have only heard good things if it is the Danny that I am thinking of, and concur that sending it back makes sense. If you want to work on it, you could always find out what type of sealant was used and the recommended removal method, as you know who did the work.

    With my vintage pens, I kind of have settled on using inks of similar properties, with the dry writers being the dry writers and the wet ones being the wet ones. One of the advantages of having a gazillion pens.

    Have a good one,

    Bob
    It was repaired by Danny Fudge, the one you were thinking of likely. I am fairly sure it was pretty darn clean before I sent it to him because that's how I ended up breaking the pen in the first place, shearing off the breather tube. He only put a drop of shellac so it was still relatively easy to remove. Didn't get any significant improvement with the hood yet but I am leaving the nib with a brass shim in between the tines overnight to see how that works. I'll try to heat up the cap and pinch again.

    I've come full circle, now I realize after cutting a small square with rounded corners and light sanding on those edges that brass shims are much gentler to use for that purpose. At first I used shims, then moved to the feeler gauge, now I'm back to shims.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Brass is considerably softer than steel and is much less likely to scratch a gold nib, or so I've read.

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    Default Re: Dry writing Parker 51

    Quote Originally Posted by Chrissy View Post
    Please don't try to adjust it by sticking anything up the hood. You will be more likely to break the point off the hood or the hood itself than do anything else.
    If it was my pen I would return it to whoever adjusted it and say it's flow still isn't right.

    This is the most logical solution. You can keep messing with the pen, but this is how pens break. I have a Parker 75 silver cisele that had an EF nib that was stopping ink flow consisently, and I used a brass shim from a restorer's site. It unstuck it until the day when the tipping came off of one tine. New nib, $50. Send your pen back.

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