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A Converter For My Old Geha School Pen


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2 replies to this topic

#1 stefanv

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 02:58

I recently came back into possession of my first fountain pen, a green Geha school pen that my parents purchased new for me in 1973 during a 3-month visit to Germany. They had found it after they heard of my rekindled interest in fountain pens (although I'd never stopped writing with them). The problem is that Geha is long gone from the fountain pen scene, and their proprietary cartridges are no longer available. Some people have had luck using Lamy cartridges, but I wanted to see if I could fit a converter to the pen. A Lamy converter won't work, because the pen only accepts Lamy cartridges inserted backwards.

Since I had a couple of Cross push-in converters laying around, I decided to see if I could modify one to fit the Geha. After some careful measurements, trial-fitting, and making it up as I went along, here's what I came up with:

geha1.jpg


The bottom of the converter (left in the photos) is made of a soft plastic. The last 3mm or so is narrower inside than the rest of that part, and forms the seal around the nipple inside the pen. The inside diameter was just under 2.9mm, whereas the nipple in the Geha is 3mm in diameter, so I enlarged it using a 3mm drill bit. I then used an X-acto knife to trim off part of the sealing area (as part of the overall shortening of the converter), leaving about 2mm of the seal. To ensure a good seal, I put a thin coating of silicone grease on the inside of the seal.

geha2.jpg


Next, I disassembled the converter and shortened the knob to 23mm by cutting off part of the top. As you can see in the photo, the piston screw can extend past the top if the piston is screwed all the way out. In actual use, the screw can't protrude more than a tiny bit, or the converter won't fit in the pen.

The photo below shows the modified converter next to an unmodified converter (which happens to be full of ink). The piston in the modified converter is almost at the point where the screw would start to protrude from the knob.

geha3.jpg


At this point, I could install the converter in the pen. All my measurements indicated that I should have been done, but I could not screw the barrel all the way down onto the section. I eventually determined that the metal sleeve that holds the knob in place was hitting a ridge inside the barrel. This ridge was there to keep the spare cartridge from moving around.

geha4.jpg


To resolve this problem, I did two things. First I disassembled the converter again and chucked the sleeve in a drill with the knurled section protruding. Using first a file and then some fine emery cloth, I slightly tapered the knurled part of the sleeve. Next, I used a very sharp 5/16" drill bit, held in my hand, to carve out the inside of the barrel. From my measurements, I should have used a 7.5mm or 19/64" bit, but I didn't have one and I determined that the outside diameter of the barrel was enough that I could safely use the larger bit. I went very slowly, turning the bit a few times and then test fitting the barrel on the section. I stopped as soon as I could get the barrel all the way on and back off again without pulling the converter out of the pen.

With the barrel removed, the converter is a bit wobbly because the outside diameter of the lower part is quite a bit narrower than the inside of the section. However, with the barrel in place, the converter is unable to move. By my calculations, this converter can hold about 0.5mL of ink when screwed out as far as will fit in the pen, which compares favorably with a Geha, Cross, or short international cartridge, and is about half of what a Sheaffer or long international cartridge holds.

Now I just need to make a few cosmetic improvements to the pen, such as removing the teethmarks from the cap (no idea how I'm going to do that), and finding something to put into the top of the cap (there's something missing, but I don't remember what used to be there, so if you know, please let me know). There's also some damage to the nib, including some pitting on top next to the slit, and a nick in one side, but neither of these blemishes seem to affect its writing ability. The pen should be good for another 38 years!

Edited by stefanv, 16 February 2011 - 03:02.

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#2 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 09:58

For a few Joyful seconds...I was chuckling - I have a Cross Townsend with converter, I don't use. Hurray....hurray. There were a couple of Geha cartridge pens that looked interesting.

Sigh.....

If you go to German Ebay...every once in a blue moon, there is some original cartridges available.
Where is the back wards boot kicking smili?
I should have bought some, way back when of two years ago.

But I was thinking inside the box, buy pen buy cartridge....not buy cartridge..buy pen. :rolleyes: :crybaby:

Ah Ha....got razor blade, got Lamy cartridge....got small drill bit???? :unsure:

Edited by Bo Bo Olson, 16 February 2011 - 09:59.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#3 DarkHorse

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Posted 05 December 2015 - 12:18

Recently I found my old Geha fountain pen.

It had not been very well stored, but luckily still in very good condition.

Yet I needed some cartridges. At first I filled the old ones still in the pne with a syringe, but I also did some searching on the net. And....

 

YES you can still buy cartridges that fit Geha.

German company Herlitz makes Universal cartridges that fit Geha.

 

 

http://www.amazon.de... tintenpatronen

 

and also same size

 

http://www.amazon.de... tintenpatronen


Edited by DarkHorse, 05 December 2015 - 12:26.







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