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Cs Churchill Ink Capacity


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#1 penmanila

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 02:21

hi, folks--i love my lever-fill churchill to bits, but one issue i've had with it is its seemingly minuscule ink capacity. i've unscrewed the nib unit to look inside and i was surprised to find that the sac isn't as large and as deep as, say, what you might find in a duofold senior (which was what i was expecting). rather, in my pen, it goes in just over an inch or so before encountering some kind of valve.

so i really don't get to write too much with the pen until it dries up and i have to refill the pen again. (i've even taken to using it like an eyedropper and i just manually fill the cavity instead of using the lever.)

did i get a dud or is this really just the way CS has designed things? tia.

jose

Edited by penmanila, 12 January 2013 - 02:24.

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#2 penmanila

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 15:45

Or can a Churchill owner at least confirm my observation about the shallow sac? Thanks.
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#3 phlosar

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 19:47

I have a Churchill and the ink capacity is fine. Have you take the section out to see how long the pen sac is? Maybe a pic of the pen with nib/section/sac in comparison to barrel would help?


Don't take it apart if you are not familiar with this basic of pen repair (heat to thread area of barrel before removing section).

If you don't get better answers, then I can pull my section this weekend to see just how long the sac is.

#4 Sasha Royale

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 21:42

Is your CS Churchill a big as the Parker Duofold Senior ?
Has the pen ever been serviced, possibly a sac replacement ?
How many times do you cycle the lever, when filling ?
0.5 cc of ink writes a long time.

If all else fails, some adjustment of the mechanism may be due.

#5 penmanila

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 00:38

thanks for your replies. i repair duofolds, vacumatics, esterbrooks, and such all the time so i've seen and handled different kinds of filling mechanisms, but this is the first time i've seen a lever-fill (and such a big one, too) have a sac that seems to be controlled by some kind of valve (must be the lever bar pressing against the sac) about an inch and half of the way in.

what i've done is to use an eyedropper to let ink seep through the hole in that "valve," and this way i've been able to get a decent amount of ink into the pen. an odd way of refilling a lever-fill, but at least it works (and i won't have to worry about wearing out that lever) ;)
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#6 phlosar

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 04:02

Can you provide some pictures of this pen disassembled? I'm puzzled by the valve comment. :hmm1: The short sac seems to be only one part of the issue. Does a larger sac help? You seem to know you way around lever fills (Esterbrook). I will try to take some pics this weekend, but football and plumbing work might preclude.

#7 penmanila

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 05:31

^i suppose i could (i use heat all the time to help remove recalcitrant sections from vacs, duofolds, and such) but for the moment, i'd rather not, especially since my eyedropper method seems to be working just fine. however, if you've already disassembled your churchill and could show photos, that would be very instructive and much appreciated. i will try to take a pic of that "valve" i was referring to--seems to be the sac's mouth, pinched in, if you can imagine what i mean, so there should be a lot more sac behind it. ;)
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#8 SteveE

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 14:00

Is yours an early production Churchill? I have one from the first production runs and have had no end of filler problems. It has been back and forth to the factory several times for filler repair (I think it has more frequent flier miles than I have!). My problems have been sac failures and leakage, but if your pen is an early model it may have been repaired and/or modified by a repair person other than the factory. In this case, it may be a kinked or shrunken sac, and re-saccing may correct the issue. I haven't taken mine apart, but as I remember, the sac is not a simple shellac job. There was some sort of collar and/or sleeve involved in the assembly. If you check the old posts you may find the pictures. Also, for a while, Richard Binder was doing a modification to the pressure bar and possibly other components to prevent premature sac failures in Lever-filled Churchills.

The Churchills are great pens to use, large but light weight, with wonderful nibs BUT the early lever fillers were tough to keep working. Mine spends most of its time in the drawer for that reason.

#9 paulturtle92

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 09:40

Mine's an EF CS Churchill, but writes extremely wet. As a result, it's extraordinarily scratchy but lays down a line much like a BB. Still, I regard it as one of my best pens, because (to me) it has character. With a good fill, I'd normally be able to get out a solid 5 or 6 pages written, font size approx 16-20, single spaced.

#10 raging.dragon

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 21:48

Mine's an EF CS Churchill, but writes extremely wet. As a result, it's extraordinarily scratchy but lays down a line much like a BB. Still, I regard it as one of my best pens, because (to me) it has character. With a good fill, I'd normally be able to get out a solid 5 or 6 pages written, font size approx 16-20, single spaced.


I've never written with a CS EF; however, CS nibs come from Bock and my in my experience Bock EF nibs are smooth unless the tines are misaligned. Also, are you writing with enough pressure to flex the nib? If so that would explain both the scratchiness and the unusually broad and we line.

Edited by raging.dragon, 20 January 2013 - 21:49.


#11 Koyote

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Posted 22 January 2013 - 22:17

Mine's an EF CS Churchill, but writes extremely wet. As a result, it's extraordinarily scratchy but lays down a line much like a BB. Still, I regard it as one of my best pens, because (to me) it has character. With a good fill, I'd normally be able to get out a solid 5 or 6 pages written, font size approx 16-20, single spaced.


That is appallingly little writing on one fill for an EF nib. Heck, with my Waterman Carene's wet stub nib, I once kept track and got 12 pages of writing on a full converter of ink.

#12 paulturtle92

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 15:26

ragingdragon, no, I don't write with much pressure. In fact, I have problems writing with ballpoints and some rollerballs if I have to use them. I have to remember to press down, so I think I don't write with too much pressure.

Koyote, that's what I gather too; my Lamy M wrote something like 15 pages on a full piston-fill of ink.

I'd tried to get it exchanged, but the shop I bought it from refused, saying that the nib was a bit worn. I personally don't get that, since at that time it was only about a month old. How could it be worn unless I was writing on sandpaper? At any rate, it was $150 for a new nib, and CS customer services didn't reply to my email about this matter. I just shoved the lemon into my drawer until I had more time (and the mood) to play with it more. Was kinda disappointed, went looking for a fun everyday pen, ended up with a temperate gusher of a pen.

#13 adamselene

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 01:57

Just got my wonderful Classic Green Lever Fill IF Churchill back from repair (7 hours ago).  I dropped the pen, and the nib needed to be fixed.  Mike-it-work did a great job, but a few days later, the filling lever fell off.

I won't say how long I had to wait to get it back.  It writes wonderfully.  It replaced my Centennial Minuskin 1.0 stub in a heartbeat, as my pen-in-hand.

I did fill it for the third time about an hour ago, taking extra care to work the lever multiple times.  I had a twinge of worry.

Then I read this thread.

I will post again if there seems to be an issue.

Edited by adamselene, 09 April 2013 - 20:18.


#14 adamselene

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 18:05

My Churchill IS running out of gas too soon, since coming back with lever repair. However, a confound might be that my ink bottle is running low. I just filled it from a fresh bottle (Montblanx Midnight Blue), and hopefully this will resolve the mystery, the section was into the ink this time, but not before. Is the pen actually heavier filling this way? Seems so, but itmight be wishful thinking.

So, I suggest filling with the nib totally submerged, and reporting results (fingerscrossed).

Cheers!

#15 raging.dragon

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 08:31

My Churchill IS running out of gas too soon, since coming back with lever repair. However, a confound might be that my ink bottle is running low. I just filled it from a fresh bottle (Montblanx Midnight Blue), and hopefully this will resolve the mystery, the section was into the ink this time, but not before. Is the pen actually heavier filling this way? Seems so, but itmight be wishful thinking.

So, I suggest filling with the nib totally submerged, and reporting results (fingerscrossed).

Cheers!


If the nib and feed weren't fully submerged it would pickup a bit of ink but not much. So most likely your pen is fine and pulled more ink from the full bottle exactly as you suspect.

#16 Silent Speaker

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 09:42

Since I was once interested in this pen, I did a bit of reading about it in the back pages.

IIRC it does indeed have a smaller capacity than one would expect, and the mechanism is finicky at that. Even CS has acknowledged this, and that's why on the new Marlborough they implemented an allegedly improved lever filling mechanism that should be less prone to problems as well as being able to hold more ink.

Though I've heard from owners that it does hold more ink, whether the system is more robust than the Churchill's still needs time to asses.

#17 Koyote

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 22:28

Since I was once interested in this pen, I did a bit of reading about it in the back pages.

IIRC it does indeed have a smaller capacity than one would expect, and the mechanism is finicky at that. Even CS has acknowledged this, and that's why on the new Marlborough they implemented an allegedly improved lever filling mechanism that should be less prone to problems as well as being able to hold more ink.

Though I've heard from owners that it does hold more ink, whether the system is more robust than the Churchill's still needs time to asses.


Well, lever-fillers are pretty modern and newfangled. I guess it's understandable that Conway Stewart needs some time to master the technology.

#18 PatientType

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Posted 14 April 2013 - 04:34

I'd been rather warming to the idea of getting a lever-fill Churchill. I have button-fill and converter-fill Conway Stewarts. This thread cools my ardor somewhat. I had a similar experience a few years ago when my modern 100 with a captive converter failed. It was the coolest way to load ink until it no longer loaded ink and proceeded to bleed internally.

So, I think I'll continue to use and enjoy my existing collection of Conway Stewarts. Converters don't have vast capacity for ink but they are easy to fill, easy to rinse out, and they have never been problematic in so far as reliability - at least I've never had a Conway Stewart converter issue and that reflects use of about ten pens.

#19 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 11:54

I am buying soon a churchill limited edition i nsecond hand in blue resin. I will make a review of it and let you know how long it writes when filled


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#20 HBlaine

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 01:20

Well, lever-fillers are pretty modern and newfangled. I guess it's understandable that Conway Stewart needs some time to master the technology.

 

You do realize that I nearly spit soda all over my nice Thinkpad keyboard when I read this... :lticaptd:


"Here was a man who had said, with his wan smile, that once he realized that he would never be a protagonist, he decided to become, instead, an intelligent spectator, for there was no point in writing without serious motivation." - Casaubon referring to Belbo, Foucault's Pendulum.

#21 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 18 June 2013 - 08:58

The ink capacity on my churchill is  decent and it works flawlessly with visconti ink which it seems to appreciate the visconti ink more than other inks


Pens are like watches , once you start a collection, you can hardly go back. And pens like all fine luxury items do improve with time
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#22 lunawing

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Posted 03 July 2013 - 22:15

I have one level-fill Churchill and it holds plenty of inks. I tested its capacity yesterday when I clean the pen. I can count almost 40 drops of water out of it, which is more than my Pelikan M800.

 

CH