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Noodler´s Ahab - Ease My Flex Mod


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#181 Pterodactylus

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 09:49

23182341155_2b68617702_o.jpgAhab_Ease_My_Flex_Mod_response_46 by Ptero Pterodactylus, auf Flickr
 
(Noodler´s Ahab EMF ..... Rohrer & Klingner Salix)
 
You are right, that Noodler´s refuses to sell spare parts for his "tinker" pens is an absolute disgrace.
IMO only motivated to maximize the profit.
 
Btw. I´ve written also some words regarding the Serwex also in Fabienne´s thread about adapting her Ahab feed in the Repair section.
http://www.fountainp...-out/?p=2869411
 
Kevin at FPR is really a nice very helpful guy. :)

Edited by Pterodactylus, 21 November 2015 - 20:39.

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#182 Drone

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 10:45

Hi Again Pterodactylus,

 

Thanks for the reply. Yes, in the limited dealings I've had with FPR, Kevin has been a pleasure to deal with. I just sent Kevin an Email with a link to this discussion, perhaps he'll chime in with some suggestions - or maybe he'll try the EMF mod himself :)

 

Funny you mention the ED conversion. I was pondering if perhaps the flow issues might be due to a lousy converter - and I though about syringe filling a decent cartridge or an ED conversion. Have you tried using your FPR pen with EMF mod as an eye dropper? If so, did it make a difference?

 

OK on having to cut the end of the feed down to prevent it from hitting the paper. My Konrad with EMF mod doesn't have this issue, even with the feed hiked up near the nib tip. However, I do have a Platinum "Balance" PGB-3000 (black/GT) with a "sorta-flex" (my term) fine steel nib that does have this issue. I'm going to have to shave the end of the Platinum nib down a bit to give it clearance.

 

Oh-oh, topic drift...

 

The Platinum PGB-3000 is the Asia-only version of the (fairly) inexpensive Platinum "Cool" that has been recently released in the U.S. This pen's nib actually has some flex - amazing for an inexpensive production pen. I think I paid $27 USD plus $10 tracked shipping for this pen from Engeika back in August 2013. But it took awhile for Engeika to actually get and ship the pen. The PGB-3000 series are solid color pens (red, blue, green, black) with GT plated nibs and furniture. The caps are snap on. The build and feel of the pen is beyond the asking price. Here's a picture stolen some time ago from the old Engeika site:

 

Engeika_03.jpg

 

The PGB-3000 "Balance" is a light pen, it is not plastic on brass heavy. It handles perfectly posted or unposted. Maybe that's why they call it "Balance"?

 

The PGB-3000 might be a candidate for the EMF mod. The ribless translucent plastic feed seems to be able to keep up with nib even when pushing the flex quite far - on my pen anyway. My nib is fine; a needlepoint Asian fine. The Platinum converter quality is top-notch. I haven't tried to pull the nib/feed yet, but it looks like a simple friction fit. The nib doesn't have much overhang to cut away. Here are a couple of pics of my unmodified fine nib:

 

Fig-08 (Small).jpg

 

Feed, uninked and clean:

 

Fig-09 (Small).jpg

 

I'm on the fence about attacking this pen. It flexes somewhat as is (not as much as an Ahab) and writes so well. Hmm....


Edited by Drone, 24 January 2014 - 10:48.


#183 Drone

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 11:19

I remembered Brian Goulet did a review of the Platinum "Cool" pen (physically same as my PGB-3000, but demonstrator). Toward the end he does a little flexing. The post with video here:

 

http://www.inknouvea...ool-review.html

 

I just pulled my PGB-3000 from the idle tray. Looking closely at the feed, there isn't a lot to shave down to give clearance :glare: Maybe pulling the feed back on the nib - but  that will lessen flow. Hmm... again.



#184 Drone

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 12:24

Below: Noodler's Olive-Ripple Ebonite Konrad with EMF mod, ink is MB Johnathan Swift (Seaweed) LE, Kokuyo paper.

 

Aria_PGB-3000_01a.jpg

 

Below: Unmodified Platinum PGB-3000 "Balance" Black/GT, Sheaffer's Skrip Blue (Modern), Kokuyo paper.

 

Aria_PGB-3000_02a.jpg

 

I tried to keep the scale of the two samples the same and on the same type paper. I should have used the same ink, but was too lazy to clean and swap inks - these scans only took a minute or two. If you look closely at the PGB-3000 sample, you may be able to just make out where the feed is hitting the paper sometimes. The feed hitting the paper is what's limiting more flex from the PGB-3000.

 

Still on the fence about doing the EMF mod on the Platinum. I'll sleep on it.



#185 Sinistral1

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 12:37

Oh boy, I can't wait to see someone attempt the EMF mod on a nib that isn't steel!! You are a brave explorer in Pen World, Drone!

Breathe.  Take one step at a time.  Don't sweat the small stuff.  You're not getting older, you are only moving through time.  Be calm and positive.


#186 Drone

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 15:51

Oh boy, I can't wait to see someone attempt the EMF mod on a nib that isn't steel!! You are a brave explorer in Pen World, Drone!

 

Hi Sinistrai1,

 

The nibs on the Platinum PGB-3000 and Cool pens are steel. The PGB-3000 nib is gold-tone platted, the Platinum Cool nib is not gold-tone plated (I use "gold-tone" as the plating may not be real gold). A drawback with cutting a steel nib that is gold-tone plated is that the plating will be lost when the nib is modified. The non-plated Platinum Cool nib may be a better target in this respect. Professional Nibmeisters (and other "brave" souls as you say) have been modding real gold modern nibs for more flex for ages. From what I've read, you get more flex from some gold nibs vs. steel, but not all. The real gold Pilot Falcon pen and the Pilot FA nibs seem to be good targets that have been done with good results.

 

Regards, David


Edited by Drone, 24 January 2014 - 15:54.


#187 Sinistral1

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 15:59

Well, you're still braver than I am at this point, and I await the results of your EMF mod to a gold toned steel nib.

Breathe.  Take one step at a time.  Don't sweat the small stuff.  You're not getting older, you are only moving through time.  Be calm and positive.


#188 Loeschpapier

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 01:08

Well, today I just received a FPR Triveni Ebonite from Kevin, and a Platinum PG-250 pocket fountain pen ('big cap') from speerbob. And I already have one Konrad (why does does my Hudson Bay Fathoms Blue look more and more opaque despite having been barely used??? Ugh.) and one FPR Dilli as well.

The Konrad took some real effort for minimal flex and I'm sorry, I can barely write cursive with the original Noodler's flex nib; simply because it takes far too much physical strength that my rheumatoid arthritis hand can handle. In the beginning I washed, rinsed and scrubbed the heck out out feed and nib, and also did some minor work on the feed, barely made a difference and somehow I ALWAYS had major ink stains in one finger, even before messing with it. So I stuck a Jowo stub nib into it that I found on Amazon. The Konrad still has start up issues and of course it still gives me in stains. Usually I don't mind, but I do mind when I accidentally got ink on expensive fabric!

The Triveni Ebonite is gorgeous to look at!! Of course it's not as seamless as a vintage ebonite pen, but for 28.50 (Kevin had a sale a week ago, and the pen travelled from India to the US in 9 days) it works far better than the Konrad. (still unmodified, just rinsed well). It flexes better out of the box than the Konrad.

Out of Konrad, Triveni Ebonite and Dilli, the clear winner in terms of unmodified flexing: The Dilli. Once I feel better and have more time, I will attempt to modify at least the Konrad, it'll be my guinea pig. Then I'll attempt modding the Dilli, since I already have some spare nibs.

Once I'm through, I'll attempt writing samples.

The Platinum PG-250 from Speerbob wrote nicely out of the box, definitely a gold color plated nib, but not as still as a steel Safari, for example. I noticed that the nib in 'factory setting' is already fairly high, which might explain then bit of springiness, although far from flexing.

Thank you to everyone and their input, I learned a lot from all of you.

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"I amar prestar aen, han mathon ne nen, han mathon ne chae a han noston ned 'wilith."


#189 Brooks MT

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Posted 30 January 2014 - 22:01

I applied the EMF mod to a Creeper nib. The nib became very flexible, perhaps approaching a vintage noodle? The weight of pen and hand alone will flex the nib a bit, without any concious pressure downwards.

While I like the EMF Creeper nib with Waterman Green ink, I didn't like the increased flex as well with Noodler's Bernanke Blue. The Bernanke is a very surfactant-rich ink, I believe. Almost all hairlines laid down in this ink expand in width, even in the very good papers available to me. The best nib for this ink, for me, is the Nikko G fit to the Creeper. Hairlines stay hairy :-) See thread here:

http://www.fountainp...odlers-creeper/

But for a normal ink, like Waterman Green, the EMF produces a Creeper that is a joy to use :-)

Photos: 1)Creeper with Nikko G and Bernanke Blue, and green Creeper with EMF mod and Waterman Green.
2) Writing example. The differences between nibs and inks are more apparent in real than in the digital photos, to my eye, anyway.
 

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Edited by Brooks MT, 30 January 2014 - 22:03.


#190 Gardengal97

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Posted 31 January 2014 - 03:20

I am sure that it is trashed, but i dropped my pen and broke the barrel  (yes I am a klutz of the highest order)anyways.... I bought another noodler's Ahab and I am contemplating the mod again.   Pics this time, I promise.  I have a vintage gold nib in the new Ahab so the flex is an extra now. I have been unaccountably lucky in my junk pen buys and have landed myself a wet noodle for about $9.00. Now the noodler's nibs seem so stiff in comparison. 



#191 Squeteague

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Posted 31 January 2014 - 14:21

I am sure that it is trashed, but i dropped my pen and broke the barrel  (yes I am a klutz of the highest order)anyways.... I bought another noodler's Ahab and I am contemplating the mod again.   Pics this time, I promise.  I have a vintage gold nib in the new Ahab so the flex is an extra now. I have been unaccountably lucky in my junk pen buys and have landed myself a wet noodle for about $9.00. Now the noodler's nibs seem so stiff in comparison. 

 

Wow, congratulations!

 

I can only hope that one day I'll be able to land such a deal. :)

I haven't had much luck with my search for a vintage flex lately.



#192 Pterodactylus

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Posted 31 January 2014 - 21:48

22553985064_193d11d403_o.jpgAhab_Ease_My_Flex_Mod_response_47 by Ptero Pterodactylus, auf Flickr
 
(Serwex MB - flex EMF ..... ESS Registrars Blue/Black)
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#193 Gardengal97

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 05:17

I reattempted the angel wings mod.  Here is my result! I used a flex shaft and grinder bit.   I removed material from in front of the shoulders almost down to the tip, ground the shoulders down a bit and made an aggressive cut behind the shoulders of the nib. 

  I found my wet noodle on the bay of course in a broken pen lot. I wasn't sure it would be one, but I thought it would be flexy and I hoped it would be gold.  I was so stoked when I fixed the pen and replaced the ink sac.   I almost screamed when I realized what I had.  Now to learn how to write with a true wet noodle, needle point pen....  Sorry for my  penmanship, I am slowly getting better with practice, but it is not there yet. 

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#194 Sinistral1

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 09:03

Nice photos. Remember, your handwriting now looks way cooler than you could have created with a ball point, and that's really what matters.

Breathe.  Take one step at a time.  Don't sweat the small stuff.  You're not getting older, you are only moving through time.  Be calm and positive.


#195 grainweevil

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 11:35

Howdy flexoligists! Lots of successful mods going on here I see; excellent. Not all of us can find $9 noodles. *sob*

 

As this is pretty much base camp for Noodler's nib tinkerers, it seems the place to just drop off the information from this thread that spare flex and non-flex nibs and feeds for the Ahab are currently available from Pure Pens. Having just taken delivery of one of each nib (I have evil plans I wish to try, when time permits), and given that Pure Pens is a little low on detail (!) I can confirm they're both Noodler's nibs.

 

fpn_1391253967__noodlerssparenibs.jpg

From top to bottom; EMF'd Original, Pure Pens Purchased (PPP) flex, PPP non-flex.

 

Cheers, Al



#196 Pterodactylus

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 11:49

Hi Al,

Thanks for the update, that's great, I hope this offer from Pure Pens is a permanent one.
Don't forget to show us the results of your evil plans :)
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#197 andymcc

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 19:18

grainweevil: Thanks for posting that link, I got my Konrad from Purepens and broke the nib and feed, I dumped the pen but it's good to know that finally there's spares available :)



#198 xxxxx

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 01:23

spare flex and non-flex nibs and feeds for the Ahab are currently available from Pure Pens.

 

Woo-hoo!  Thanks Al for posting, and hooray for Pure Pens, they do rock.

:thumbup:

 

And ... apparently ... the Ahab's nib and feed are identical to the Konrad's nib and feed.

 

-- Constance



#199 Drone

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 12:03

Hey Al - Thanks from me too. For once, we have some hope when it comes to spares! Let's also hope Nathan doesn't find out and put an end to it.

 

Constance - Yes, the Konrad and Ahab have the same nib and feed. I have both type pens and have swapped parts numerous times. Note, there is one difference when inserting the nib and feed in the Ahab vs. the Konrad. The Ahab has an indentation inside the section that accommodates the nib, So you have to rotate the nib and feed the right way when inserting them in the Ahab. The Konrad on the other hand has no such indentation and will take the nib and feed regardless of orientation in the section. That's the way my pens are anyway.



#200 Brooks MT

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Posted 14 February 2014 - 18:55

Using calipers to achieve consistant in arch in your EMF nib collection.

If you have calipers, you can measure across the nib, perpendicular to the long axis (see diagram). This measurement will allow you to gauge how much you have ground off, and how much further you have to go. Use the knife-like tips of your calipers to get a true measurement of the material remaining between the highest part of the arch and the top of the nib. One leg of the calipers goes over the top of the nib; the other leg is positioned spanning the 2 bottom sides of the nib at the thinnest part of the arches. The measurement won't tell you if you are grinding symmetrically, rather it gives you an average of the 2 arches since you are measuring both simultaneously.

Suggested measuring procedure (and grinding goals) for the Ahab/Konrad EMF mod:
1. Draw the arch on your nib with a marker pen. Measure the depth of the un-ground nib at the place you expect the top of your arch to be.
For my un-ground Noodler's stiff nib, this depth = 0.105" (2.67mm)
Notes: 1) This is the measurement of the depth of a Noodler’s stiff nib. By the time I thought of using calipers, I'd already EMF'ed all my Noodler's Flex nibs, so I don't know what the depth was in an original flex nib. However, holding the stiff and the flex nib together, they appear to be the same size.
2) Since the nib bottom edges are not parallel to the nib top, and since each grind will likely place the top of the arch in a slightly different position relative to the length of the nib, it's impossible to define a universal value for the original depth. Wherever you decide to place the top of your arch is the value you should record.

2. Decide how much metal you wish to leave un-ground at the top of the arch. I originally left about 0.050" (1.27mm) of metal (measured depth). While this increased the flex over the un-ground nib, I decided to re-grind the arch, removing more metal, to get more flex. Measuring my nine already-ground nibs, I found unexpected variation in the arch (0.044-0.052" left). The most flexible nib, and the most pleasant one to use, had a top arch thickness of 0.044".I decided to shoot for a top arch value of 0.045" (1.14mm) in my other nibs. The reground nibs were noticeably more flexible. A little change made a big difference to the good.

3. If you subtract the remaining arch value (found in step 2) from the original thickness, you will know how much metal you removed. Recording this value may help you achieve uniform flex across your pen collection. For my reground nibs, total metal removal was 0.060" (1.52mm). In Pterodactylus' first post, he suggests removing 2.0mm. Possibly the top of my arch is farther from the tip than Pterodactylus' arch, which would account for the difference. Or, maybe I simply have not ground off as much as Pterodactylus - I'll write a while with the 1.52mm nibs, and see if they flex enough for my style of writing.

4. If you modify a stiff nib into a flex nib using the "slot" method I discuss in another thread, be aware that the slot will remove metal too. This means a slotted nib will be more flexible than a Noodler's flex nib even though both might have the same EMF arch.
http://www.fountainp...ers-ahabkonrad/

5. Others have reported flex variation between unmodified Noodler's flex nibs. So, attaining uniform flex across your collection of pens may not be as straight-forward as I implied  :-/ However, with the measurement method I suggest here, you will have a baseline to which you can refer when you shoot for consistency.
-------------
I also rounded the tip of the triangle, removing about 0.5 mm or so. This was mainly done to reduce stress risers, which can cause cracks in the metal. I think it's important to leave the most of the triangle, though (or "angel wings" as some call them). Removing the wings entirely would make the nib more flexible, but at the cost of increased complexity in adjusting the tines. Leaving the wings also makes the tines more resistant to over-flexing. As we produce nibs with more and more flex, we risk the over-flex problem vintage gold nib users experience (reported by Richard Binder and Nathan Tardif).
 
It's helpful to have the horizontal gap be zero at the tips (the tips should touch). This allows capillary action to get the ink out to the tip, where it needs to be to start writing. The wings make adjusting the horizontal gap between the tips easy. To close the gap, simply bend tines down; To open the gap, bend the tines up. The wings convert some of the up/down motion into in/out motion. If the tines don't have wings, then adjusting horizontal spacing would require more complex bending and twisting of the tines. I like to keep adjustments mechanically simple :-). Of course, if you end up with "Grand Canyon" or "Inverse Grand Canyon" problems at the tips, then twisting will be required. But for simple horizontal gap adjustment, the wings will make adjustment easier.
-----------
Diagram: Where to measure arch with calipers, and my target thickness of top of arch. Also shows triangle grind.
Photo: Calipers measuring the arch.
 

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Edited by Brooks MT, 14 February 2014 - 19:01.







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