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Thread: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

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    Senior Member Jon Szanto's Avatar
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    Default Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    As the title states, I'm wondering if a Sheaffer Connoisseur threaded section is the same as the sections used in a Balance II. I only have former, so wondering if anyone can confirm a yes or no on this.
    "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 FredRydr's Avatar
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    Default Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    The sections from my Connoisseur and my Balance II will screw into the barrels of each other. However, the piston converter must be removed from the Balance's section or it will too long for the Connoisseur barrel. Ron Zorn has written about the weight Sheaffer inserted at the end of the Connoisseur barrel that blocks the piston-style converter.

    The nibs can have different designs or plating if factory correctness is an issue.

    Top: Connoisseur with squeeze converter. Bottom: Balance II with piston converter

    IMG_5802.JPG


    Third time corrected. I really blew this one. Ron was too polite to call me on it.
    Last edited by FredRydr; March 24th, 2023 at 02:49 AM.

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    Yes. The section/feed/nib units are screw-in swappable. The nibs can have different designs or plating if factory correctness is an issue.
    Thanks, Fred. I recently had the nib on the "Royal Selangor" pen ground by Gena Salorino, and it turned out to be a very fun and lovely nib to write with. It came as a B with the biggest round blob of tipping I've ever seen, and together we dreamed up a "soft architect", just like softening the edges of a crisp Italic, and I love it. The pen, though, doesn't balance in my hand so well (no pun intended). I'm going to try sourcing a Balance II, and while I know the decoration on the nib will always be apropos to the pewter Salangor, I can always place it back in the pen when not writing.

    Are the BII's dimensions that of a standard or oversice Balance?
    "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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    Chrissy (March 22nd, 2023)

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Pretty sure oversized or larger. (Iím not home to compare at the moment.)

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    Pretty sure oversized or larger. (Iím not home to compare at the moment.)
    No worries, Fred, not urgent. BTW... it also perfectly fits in a No-Nonsense / "Vintage" pen. Guess how I know.
    "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: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Left to right: mid-'30s lever-filler, late-'90s Balance II, early-'40s plunger-filler

    IMG_5801.JPG

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    Barry B. Gabay (April 12th, 2023), Chrissy (March 22nd, 2023), Jon Szanto (March 22nd, 2023)

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Great thread of useful information. Thank you both.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chrissy View Post
    Great thread of useful information. Thank you both.
    You're welcome. My initial reply kept changing as I continued to switch parts around!

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    Jon Szanto (March 22nd, 2023)

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    One side note: the Royal Selangor line (only one of four proposed pen models was ever produced) is named for the Malaysian pewter company that would make the caps and barrels... not certain if they were entire fabrications or a sleeve that they sent to Sheaffer. I had a vaguely remembered factoid that pewter was an alloy of tin and lead, so I wrote to David Nishimura to ask if he thought it might be a bit of a health issue if I used the pen regularly. He said that modern pewter alloys used very little lead, and felt it was a non-issue. For hand comfort, I still might try to land a Balance II, but now I feel ok either using the pen as-is or homing the nib for a while in the "Vintage NN pen... which is very nice, having a chased black (plastic) body very reminiscent of BCHR pens.
    "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: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Beware of pretty colors in Balance II pens. Some will self-destruct. Thereís plenty online about them.

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    I did some digging back when I had a couple of them because I had the same question about lead. No lead.

    The metal parts were made for Sheaffer. The barrel liner is a No Nonsense barrel turned down to fit and glued in. I've replaced a number of them, the first one was for Hampton-Haddon in the 6 months or so that they were the distributor and repair center for Sheaffer. Same for the Grand Connaisseur. I have a stash of NN barrels just for that. Likely the same for the cap. Unfinished NN caps turned to fit.

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    Jon Szanto (March 22nd, 2023)

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    Default Re: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Great background info, Ron, thanks!
    "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: Connoisseur / Balance II: are sections interchangeable?

    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    Beware of pretty colors in Balance II pens. Some will self-destruct. Thereís plenty online about them.
    That was the reason I've never sought one out.
    "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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