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Smitten By Snorkels

sheaffer snorkel buyer guide

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#1 weltyj

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 14:46

I'm looking to get a Sheaffer, partly because I don't have one, partly because I know my father used one way back when (but I don't know the whereabouts of that pen or the model).

 

I'm really smitten by the idea of a snorkel.  I have looked around, and can't find any general buyers guide type of information about snorkels.

 

A few questions:

I assume if it's been professionally restored, it is going to be a reliable pen for many, many years to come?

 

Are they as good as they appear to be at getting that last bit of ink out of a bottle?

 

Is there any functional difference between the triumph nibs and the open style nibs.  I do like the looks of those triumph nibs!

 

When flushing a snorkel, does it involve anything more than a "usual" fountain pen design?

 

Any other bits of advice would be very welcome.

 

Cheers,

Jeff



#2 goldfinger

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 14:57

I'm glad you're getting a Snorkel. They are wonderful writers that write smoother than any pen I've ever written with.

Few words of caution:

they hold lesser ink than most pens
They need to be properly vacuumed, otherwise they won't fill up properly
Flushing/Cleaning them is particularly hard. FPN user Ernst Bitterman gives particularly good advice on his blog: http://dirck.delint....a/?page_id=2870

#3 pakmanpony

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 15:26

Every time someone posts about getting the last out of an ink bottle, I suggest they get a Snorkel!



#4 Roger W.

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 17:07

Open nibs and triumph nibs make no difference.  I used two Statesmen models for years.  I think if you are looking to change ink colors that would probably be more problematic that some other pens - I tend to only use blue/black.  Properly restored they will last for years.

 

Roger W.

 

Snorkcolor1.jpg



#5 goldfinger

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:04

Roger W. I'm very very jealous of your pen collection. They're beautiful! It's like a rainbow melting in your eyes!

Edited by goldfinger, 23 February 2014 - 02:04.


#6 Chi Town

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Posted 24 February 2014 - 00:43

i have some avai. if interested. contact me back chanel for more info.
Mike

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#7 pajaro

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Posted 01 March 2014 - 04:48

Initially I thought the Snorkel was interesting.  After restoring one, it's still interesting.  The mechanism is clever.  The ink capacity is on the small side, but then you get to use the clever filling system more often.  It's kind of a wash.  I didn't realize it was hard to flush, but I don't mind a little ink mixing from time to time.  I think I like the Tip Dip nibs better, though.  Touchdowns with an opening in the feed.


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#8 ThomasB

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Posted 01 March 2014 - 18:48

With snorkels, you can also bring in the PFM  (Pen For Men).  They are wider but shorter than the TM Snorkels and of course hold lots more inks.  Flushing is of course the same as noted above.  here is a picture for reference

 

capped-2.jpg


Thomas Bickham
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#9 meiochi

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 17:08

Open nibs and triumph nibs make no difference.  I used two Statesmen models for years.  I think if you are looking to change ink colors that would probably be more problematic that some other pens - I tend to only use blue/black.  Properly restored they will last for years.

 

Roger W.

 

Snorkcolor1.jpg

The lack of proper ROY G BIV order is making my left eye twitch.  That's probably more of a personal problem though.  You're collection is nevertheless very impressive!


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#10 noj321

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Posted 16 March 2014 - 21:28

Oh tbickiii - you cruel man! Showing an Autograph as an 'example' PFM!  

 

It's beautiful by the way - mine has a bulbous broad nib, yours? I try to find matching pencils, and have been fortunate enough to not only source my Autograph as a set, but also a spare pencil - it would be good to match it to another pen someday!

 

I have heard rumour of Autographs in colours other than black, produced to special order - to your knowledge is this correct? Have you seen an example?

 

Excellent call though - if weltyi is keen on a snorkel the PFM is to my mind the finest - mind you they are my favourite of all pens!

 

Noj



#11 KBeezie

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 05:22

I only have one Snorkel Admiral, but I love it. sheaffer_snorkel_close.jpg

 

It's a nice pen that fills cleanly, mine was completely restored by Write on Time restoration for 35$ (included return shipping), which replaces all the seals and sacs, cleans it up, removes scratches/pits in the plastic and clean/adjust the nib as well as align the snorkle. Also includes a 1 year warranty on the restoration.

 

As others have said they don't hold as much ink in the sac (something like a 14 versus a 17 in a Sheaffer Touchdown 'fat'), so it's not going to take up much more than a milliliter of ink (I think around the realm of 0.6-0.7), But I haven't really had much of a problem using it as my casual writer. 

 

Like with vaccume/converter filling, it helps to dip the snorkel in, then pull the blind cap up to expel (and to help create a vacuum), then when you push the plunger down you want to keep that snorkel tip submerged for about 10 seconds to allow it some time to take in the ink from the vacuum created. But if the seals aren't properly set or old you might not get the vacuum you need. 

 

Some of them have been known to be working and 'writing condition' 50 years later without any maintenance, so having one actually professionally restored (not just cleaned with just a sac replacement, but actual seals replaced, snorkel aligned, etc) should pretty much give you another 60-70 years of use, especially if you keep the pen in a good environment most of it's life. 



#12 weltyj

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Posted 22 March 2014 - 00:13

(A little delayed on this post..., pens arrived 2 weeks ago)

 

I was able to take advantage of a Schaeffer sale at Peyton St. Pens.  Sooo,  I got a nice Snorkel Special, AND a Sheaffer Imperial Deluxe II.  Both are very nice writers with fine nibs.  The Snorkel has, well the snorkel :-), and a PdAg nib.  The Imperial has a Triumph nib.  Both are touchdown fillers. 

 

I'm very happy with both pens.  

 

I think the Snorkel will like waterman ink a little better with the fine nib, but the J. Herbin Eclat de Saphire is a great color, comes across not so bold with the thinner lines.

 

As usual with FPN, thanks everyone for freely offering very useful advice!

 

 

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#13 jakozak

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 16:57

I am new to the Fountain Pen hobby and have also been smitten by snorkels.  In the past few months I ordered a few fixer-uppers on Ebay and fixed 'em up.  The Youtube videos by Grandmia pens is a big help.  I haven't gotten to the point of removing scratches and polishing them yet, but that's next.  I've restored 4 snorkels to date and they are all great writers. 



#14 Roger W.

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 17:41

I hope you are leaving off most of the shellac that Grandmia wants to put on snorkels.  The threads or the section actually need nothing on them at all.  

 

Roger W.



#15 jakozak

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 22:21

I left shellac off the section threads.  I only put it on the edge of the sac.


Edited by jakozak, 19 April 2014 - 22:22.