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Cleaning A Montblanc 149


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#1 fpforever

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 19:18

Greetings all,

A coworker has a beautiful MB 149 that he had temporarily retired for a few years. To shorten the story, when he heard I had begun using FPs again, he pulled out his MB 149, which has always been filled with Montblanc black ink. He had never flushed out the pen until a few months ago--didn't know he should until he googled performance problems with fountain pens. Since then I encouraged him to walk on the wild side and try different inks. He fell in love with Pilot Iroshizuku Yama-guri, loaded his lovely Montblanc (after cleaning) and it dutifully provided a beautiful black line of ink! He has since tried soaking the pen with a solution of Windex and rinsed with regular tap water until it ran clear. The pen is performing flawlessly but the ink is now a "muddy" black with some hints of Yama-guri brown.

Being too new about all of this I thought I'd solicit suggestions. I am not sure how the pen was actually cleaned or rinsed. I know nothing about the pen or how it should be maintained. My first impression was the ink chamber still needs a thorough cleaning. The way he described it, the pen has a piston mechanism.

If FPN members could kindly, gently provide guidance on how to clean the pen, I will forward this information to him. He really wants to experience the Yama-guri in its full glory.

Thank you!
Candice

#2 osnofian

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 19:24

With dried ink, it may take a few days for everything to come back to normal. I would clean the pen with water, then fill it with water and wait overnight, the next day clean the pen again until the water runs clear. Repeat until, after the overnight period, the water runs clear.

Cleaning the ink remains in the cap should also be a good idea.

Leaving the pen submerged overnight is a bad idea.

#3 jar

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 19:35

And skip the Windex.

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#4 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 11 August 2011 - 14:44

cold water and soap and rince it till you have clear water
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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#5 Sigismund

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Posted 11 August 2011 - 14:52

And then use it everyday :thumbup:
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#6 fpforever

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Posted 13 August 2011 - 01:27

Thank you!

I will pass on the advice and let you know the results.

Regards,
Candice

#7 Zdenek

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Posted 13 August 2011 - 18:17

I use this cleaning procedure:
I rinse the pen several times with water. Then I fill the reservoir of the pen with water and immerse the nib and a part of the section into a glass with clean water. I recommend to let the process undisturbed - it is interesting to observe the flow of coloured stream flowing from the nib. It is very efficient way how to clean an FP. I call this "MB process" for myself. A lady who worked for MB boutique and trained in service recommended me that.
I had couple of times my 149's in service. I was told that it is a joy to deal with my pens because they are in very good conditions, i.e. they are clean. It is because the application of the above described process.
Best,
Zdenek

Edit: The regularity is important! I use that twice a year for pens I am using. :rolleyes:

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Edited by Zdenek, 13 August 2011 - 19:28.

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#8 Paul Raposo

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Posted 13 August 2011 - 19:44

I use this cleaning procedure:
I rinse the pen several times with water. Then I fill the reservoir of the pen with water and immerse the nib and a part of the section into a glass with clean water. I recommend to let the process undisturbed - it is interesting to observe the flow of coloured stream flowing from the nib.


How long do you leave the nib/section in the water, Zdenek? A few hours, overnight?
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#9 Zdenek

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Posted 13 August 2011 - 20:15

Usually several hrs. If you let your pen to leach ovenight nothing bad will happen.
Observe the outcome from the nib. If the colour of the discharge is still intense let it to continue.


I use this cleaning procedure:
I rinse the pen several times with water. Then I fill the reservoir of the pen with water and immerse the nib and a part of the section into a glass with clean water. I recommend to let the process undisturbed - it is interesting to observe the flow of coloured stream flowing from the nib.


How long do you leave the nib/section in the water, Zdenek? A few hours, overnight?


Edited by Zdenek, 13 August 2011 - 20:17.

Whoever said the pen is mightier than the sword, obviously never encountered automatic weapons." – General MacArthur

#10 Paul Raposo

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Posted 14 August 2011 - 01:20

Usually several hrs. If you let your pen to leach ovenight nothing bad will happen.
Observe the outcome from the nib. If the colour of the discharge is still intense let it to continue.


Excellent info, thank you, Zdenek.
There are a thousand thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up a pen to write.
--William Makepeace Thackeray


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#11 MidnightBlue

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Posted 15 August 2011 - 05:17

I leave mine twice over two nights. A lot of stuff comes out. Then I fill with distilled water and empty..then leave out overnight to dry. Oh, I hate piston fillers. CC's are so much simpler, inexpensive and faster. Thanks

#12 niksch

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 03:26

To echo a couple of replies...

I have recently returned from several weeks of an unexpected overseas business travel. I left three early 1960s 149s filled with either MB Black-n-Blue or British Racing Green. The pens were totally dry on my return this week. Normally, I would recommend a disassembly and complete cleaning of components, but I cycled water through each pen and left all of them soaking in water over three nights. No issues and all are now operating as I would expect.

edited to add: Also, use only cool water. Warm or hot water will discolor ebonite feeds.

Edited by niksch, 20 August 2011 - 16:57.

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#13 varmas

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Posted 20 August 2011 - 04:51

I use Rotring rapidograph cleaning fluid.

Fill pen with the fluid and let sit overnight. The fluid can be used diluted with water (50/50 mix) if the ink is still wet. For stubborn encrusted ink warm the fluid and use undiluted. Repeat as neccessary.

Have been using this fluid since the 80s in all my FPs and have found this the best solution short of dismantling the pen.

A 100ml bottle costs less than US$10.


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Solomon
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#14 fpforever

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Posted 22 August 2011 - 21:49

:)

Thanks for all the tips! I will continue to pass them along to my FP using coworker. He loves his Montblanc!

Regards,
Candice

#15 talkinghead

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Posted 22 August 2011 - 22:37

:)

Thanks for all the tips! I will continue to pass them along to my FP using coworker. He loves his Montblanc!

Regards,
Candice



Maybe you should tell him to join FPN himself! I'm sure he would like it here.

Rick
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#16 fpforever

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Posted 23 August 2011 - 13:53

I've mentioned FPN to him...actually told him I was posting this query for his benefit...maybe in time...

#17 TorontoMontBlancGuy

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 01:01

My experience with most all fountain pens that have not been used for a couple or three weeks is simple. Luke warm water. Fill. Empty. Fill. Empty. Fill. Empty. Fill. Let sit overnight. Empty. Fill. Let sit overnight empty.  When the water is flowing absolutely clear.... fill. Let sit for a day or two. Empty.  Still clear?  You are probably good to fill with ink but discard the first fill of ink as it will be diluted undoubtedly.  NEVER leave your pen sitting with ink in it for a long period of time.  If you are lucky you will be able to clean it out as above.  If you are unlucky it is going to require disassembly and cleaning.  I would add nothing to the luke warm water. No windex. No ammonia. No nothing.  I am just back into fountain pens and finding them all over the place and the above seems to have worked for even those that have been sitting for years unused.

 

AND PLEASE TAKE NOTE!  If you are filling a Montblanc, whatever you do, never ever ever apply excess pressure/torque to the filling stem or it will twist out of shape of break off.


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#18 meiers

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 14:28

This is awesome info.

#19 LotusFlowers13w39

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 23:55

I use only distilled water with no mineral content.

 

Tap water may contain other random things such as parasites and minerals.



#20 theverdictis

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 17:42

I use only distilled water with no mineral content.

 

Tap water may contain other random things such as parasites and minerals.

Wow I didn't even think about tap water like this. Have you always used this process or tried and tested method?

 

Ben


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#21 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 20 July 2014 - 14:32

I use cold water and it cleans efficiently any of my 149s


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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