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Cross Century -- Loose Mechanism


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#1 bicfan

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 01:09

Bought a Cross Century in Lustrous Chrome from Staples today.

The mechanism is loose. By that I mean, the top part of the body can move out of alignment with respect to the bottom part.

Between this, the dry ballpoint refills, the gel rolling ball refills rattling loudly in my Aventura Selectip, and three bad Aventura fountain pens, I am giving up on Cross.

True, they do have the guarantee, but, really, I am fed up with paying $30+ for a pen, and it not performing as well as a disposable.

I've also given up on Waterman, lately. Sigh.

/rant

#2 WriteAway

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 02:28

Since you bought a slim Century, then I suggest you look up a US-made Cross Metropolis BP - that's a solid pen available for about $20 in places on the web. I have a few (4 at last count), and if the styling appeals to you, it might satisfy. Color choices are limited, but I prefer the gunmetal/black combo of this one:

Attached Images

  • CrossMetropolisBright.jpg

Edited by WriteAway, 30 April 2012 - 02:29.


#3 rminj

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 15:47

Bought a Cross Century in Lustrous Chrome from Staples today.

The mechanism is loose. By that I mean, the top part of the body can move out of alignment with respect to the bottom part.

Between this, the dry ballpoint refills, the gel rolling ball refills rattling loudly in my Aventura Selectip, and three bad Aventura fountain pens, I am giving up on Cross.

True, they do have the guarantee, but, really, I am fed up with paying $30+ for a pen, and it not performing as well as a disposable.

I've also given up on Waterman, lately. Sigh.

/rant


Feel your rant.. I'm not sure exactly what you mean by out of alignment..but there are very little user serviceable parts on the pens. I have a century II BP that top part slides easily off. A small piece of
tape prevents this..functional and ok as it was gift but if I had paid money the warranty does not prevent
annoyance. That pen actually will not hold a refill anymore (the plastic threads are cracked/broken) so
I don't use the pen.. Between the tape and the cracked part its definitely a repair/replacement candidate.

My wife loves here ATX BP.. Recently her blue medium refill ran out; I had a very recent broad refill I
put in it... Despite being a broad it writes very dry and faint.. She's writing with but I can't stand
it. I'm going to pick up another medium I think and hope it writes better. I could return the broad to
Cross but I'm not sure it will do any good...I have never received a replacement or a reply from Cross on
their refills. I just keep buying them, as their available locally, and keep hoping to get a good one.

#4 Mike 59

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 14:43

Hi, I saw the comments on the Cross BP refills, so I did this comparison. (photo.)
Not sure if you can buy or get someone to send a few W.H Smith refills, ( a big UK stationary chain well known to anyone in our part of the world), but I will let the photo show what I see and use. Not sure if this helps or annoys!

Edited by Mike 59, 03 May 2012 - 14:49.


#5 rminj

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 16:22

Hi, I saw the comments on the Cross BP refills, so I did this comparison. (photo.)
Not sure if you can buy or get someone to send a few W.H Smith refills, ( a big UK stationary chain well known to anyone in our part of the world), but I will let the photo show what I see and use. Not sure if this helps or annoys!


That's it...that's exactly what I mean.. even the broad Cross blue came out faint and skippy like that. I don't
understand how Cross can think it's acceptable. I have some older Cross refills from around 2001 that put a
dark blue line down. I suspect someone complained about the refills being gloppy years ago and now all we get is
scratchy faint blue ones.

#6 docholt

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 14:08

A pox on Cross for their refills. They are faint and skippy or glop with little in between. I solved this - and many other ball point problems - by switching to the Fisher Space Pen refill. These can be had at many stationers or on the web / eBay. I get mine from the nice folks at Cyber Space Pens.

All the best,
doc

Ps; Before you throw away your Cross and Waterman pens consider contributing them to your fellow FPN members.

Edited by docholt, 07 May 2012 - 14:14.


#7 bicfan

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 03:16

Bought another Cross Century . . . same thing. Sigh. Guess that's how these pens are. Are my expectations too high?

I have been having good luck with the new Chinese refills, though. Not great, state-of-the-art, but not as bad as the regular Parker Quink refill, either. Blue seem better than black, though.

Edited by bicfan, 11 May 2012 - 03:22.


#8 WriteAway

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Posted 12 May 2012 - 07:11

Bought three matte finish NOS Century 1s at discounter TJMaxx in February for $9.99 each. All are operating perfectly, having no activation issues. While the medium black refills are not G2- or 207-level impressive, they leave a solid, non-blobbing line at the moderately fast pace I scribble at. Staples may have gotten a bad batch of pens - try another vendor or order from Cross.com and see if your bad luck changes.

If all else fails, stick with Bic. They seem to suit you.

#9 bicfan

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Posted 12 May 2012 - 14:57

Bought three matte finish NOS Century 1s at discounter TJMaxx in February for $9.99 each. All are operating perfectly, having no activation issues. While the medium black refills are not G2- or 207-level impressive, they leave a solid, non-blobbing line at the moderately fast pace I scribble at. Staples may have gotten a bad batch of pens - try another vendor or order from Cross.com and see if your bad luck changes.

If all else fails, stick with Bic. They seem to suit you.

Can the top parts on yours move ever so slightly in relation to the bottom part?

Like, if you take of the top part, does the inner cylinder move ever so slightly around?

I can notice the play a little when I am writing.

#10 WriteAway

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Posted 13 May 2012 - 05:40

My pens were leftovers from around 2010. I have not found any play in the mechanism on any of those pens.

How many times have you had the top part (cap) off? Any chance the little alignment nub on the mechanism is out of alignment when replacing the cap? If the refill install directions are not followed closely when removing and replacing the cap, that can cause problems, but it sounds like you have a bad mechanism, based on what you've said so far.

Personally, I'd advise you to try to find USA-made NOS Cross models on the internet. Current lower cost Cross pens, including the Aventura, are made to meet a cheaper price market segment, so their quality can be variable. The Century is Cross' bedrock pen. Bad mechanisms in that pen should not happen as often as you've experienced, so you're quite justified in your disappointment.

#11 gemgemhk

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 15:07

well, CROSS brand name not a competitor in pen market now.....anyway,,sigh , material qualities and handicraft adopted are trending downward, no more anyway.