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How Not To Adjust A Nib


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#21 stuartk

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 20:12

How strange. I suppose they were trying to widen the nib slit? I have those nice little brass and plastic sheets that Tryphon sold, that I use if I suspect the slit is part of the problem.

I use those very carefully...as I expect the brass could make a nasty scratch if it slipped.

It's a shame, but at least it still writes.


Brass is less than 1 point harder on the scale than gold for nibs.

I think you'd have to really work at it to mess up a gold nib with brass.


I'd imagine that even brass would be enough to score the sides of the slit if you were to try wedging the slit open in this manner.

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#22 Soot

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 20:30

I am just seeing this post now. Can't help but laugh when I saw the picture, you know, it's actually pretty artistic when you tilt your head sideways and seeing it as a dying tree on the earth.

Or, am I seeing things?
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#23 D Armstrong

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 15:03


Brass is less than 1 point harder on the scale than gold for nibs.

I think you'd have to really work at it to mess up a gold nib with brass.


I'd imagine that even brass would be enough to score the sides of the slit if you were to try wedging the slit open in this manner.


Just some belated metallurgucal reflections on this thread.

When it comes to hardness in non-ferrous metals (such as copper, silver, gold, etc.), don't forget that the nature of the metals means that there is great variation in hardness, depending on what has been done to the metal. This quality is universal to all of the copper alloys, such as brass and bronze, and is considered one of their great virtues.

More simply put, you can soften brass completely by heating (annealing) it to a glowing red (about 1000º F), then quenching it. Then, as it is worked, it gradually hardens, to the point where it is hard enough to be used as a knife blade (not a great one, but there is a reason they call it "the bronze age.") The same piece of brass which might be safely rubbed against a gold nib when it is soft, would damage the same nib after it has been work-hardened. Why? Because it started out relatively softer than the gold, but ended up relatively harder.

While there is empirical data rating the hardness of metals, it is not safe to use it out of it's proper context; specifically, the fact that the samples began at the same relative hardness. In practical, pen-related terms, this is important when talking about the interaction between two metals, both of which are variable. This is especially true when you consider that the differences in manufacturing processes--even within one company, between batches--can result in wide variations in nib material hardness as well. (Hence, as a speculative example, the variation in flexibility among identically shaped Parker Duofold nibs. Same materials, same shape, same tools and equipment. The variable? How hard the batch of gold sheet was when they started.)

When it comes to working on nibs, the thickness of the materials involved also comes into play. Brass foil sold as 'nib floss' is thin enough that it cannot transfer the force required to scratch the quite hard gold alloy of a nib: rather, it crumples and absorbs the force itself. A similarly thin piece of steel (like a razor blade, although to be fair that is still much thicker) is much stiffer, as well as harder.

So, in short: brass foil is safe to use on nibs, steel (of any kind) is not. And: if you don't know what you are doing, you might well wreck it (and also make it ugly.)

It all makes one wonder just what Dr. F could accomplish given a Dremel tool...
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#24 Multicoated

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Posted 03 March 2012 - 16:51

Any after shots??

#25 timbobsquarebutt

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 18:50

thanks! very helpful / much appreciated

#26 gcouch

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Posted 08 June 2012 - 01:29

Ouch! There's a reasons pens and knives don't belong in the same sentence. Or on the same table.

#27 ogopogo

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Posted 06 August 2012 - 00:55

Right now, I am collecting at my roots - The Sheaffer No nonsense. I have found that from lot to lot, the Sheaffer No Nonsense italic nibs vary from what is a B nib and what is a M nib.
Some lots M nibs are M nibs and B nibs are like Extra B.
Because many of the Sheaffer NN nibs are italic (ie. flat) what is the standard size for F, M and B flat/italic nibs?
My other question, is how would one grind those nibs for consistency?
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#28 Downcelot

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 22:24

It was irony. At first glance, I laughed at the picture, then I quickly realized that the nib there meant somebody else' pain. For some reason, I stopped laughing in an instance. Lesson is learned, never to touch my pens with knife.

#29 kevmar

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 22:22

I can feel the pain from here :embarrassed_smile:
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#30 scorpscarx

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 01:01

That looks like a stitch job some quack doctor gave me when I was 5 :).

#31 iamchum

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 04:09

oh my god..........
I've heard about the whole scalpel trick, but it always seemed dangerous to me, now I know why, sticking to my flat feeler gauges thank u very much.

Again, a case where common sense has not prevailed.

I feel for the pen :crybaby:

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#32 Doc Psycho

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 15:50

I'm new to the tuning game (to fp in general really) but the very first thread I saw on the subject was, essentially, "NEVER EVER USE A DREMEL!" I investigated more from there, found recommendations for feeler gauges, and have been fairly succesful with those so far. I'll admit to using a razor blade on a couple of nibs (from below, super carefully, when I needed something with a taper) but those have only been really cheap pens. I've had one disaster, was trying to tighten up a feed slot with a pair of round-nosed jewelry pliers and shattered the tipping material. Fortunately, I was able to say "lesson learned" on a $16 pen. I now have a Crocodile with a very interesting custom-ground stub :-P

#33 Harsh108

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 19:47

I am having difficulty with the flow of ink...I was gonna try similar trick on my cheap pen. Anyone had any suggestions how to improve flow. Seems like my ink dries out and I have to shake few times before it starts again,,,


Harsh

#34 glidagida

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 03:06

I am having difficulty with the flow of ink...I was gonna try similar trick on my cheap pen. Anyone had any suggestions how to improve flow. Seems like my ink dries out and I have to shake few times before it starts again,,,


Harsh


This is an excerpt from the brief notes that I downloaded as a 'newbie' six or so years ago from a Pen Repair Site. At the time I had a recalcitrant Monteverde Invincia Carbon which wrote like a dry tongue on a stamp.

"Ink flow can be regulated by adjusting the prongs of the nib. A wider gap between the prongs increases the flow, Adjustment is simply by inserting a nib spacer ( a heavy razor blade or fine penknife) in the pierce hole and moving it gently towards the tip. This will increase the gap and consequently the ink flow."

I appreciate all the comments of Richard and those above, makes me shudder now. EEK.

Cheers

Edited by glidagida, 08 April 2013 - 03:07.


#35 LWJ2

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 01:59

That photo of Mr. Binder's reminded me of the time I was standing at the back counter of Clark Bros. outside Warrenton VA chatting with John Clark. Gent came in carrying a cigar box and approached us.

 

"I tried tuning and polishing this and screwed up. Can you fix it?" He opened the cigar box; inside was a Smith & Wesson Mod. 19. In pieces, he'd detail stripped it down to dis-assembling the action.

 

John looked at it, nodded and said "Sure. I'll even give you ten bucks off for having balls enough to admit it."

 

Hopefully the owner of the pen will learn from the experience.



#36 graystranger

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 23:32

Now I can relate to that, have been in Clark Bros. from time to time when I commuted to/from Virginia from Delaware.  Even spent money in that store!  Haven't been to Warrenton in some years now, too far from Lynchburg to visit. Thanks for bringing back memories.

 

I have some stainless steel shim but would not even use that on SS pen nibs.  By the way you don't have to quench copper alloys when you heat them, they anneal with or without quenching. Quenching will not harden these alloys, they can only be hardened by work hardening. Were my metallurgy classes and labs THAT long ago? Wow! :yikes:


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#37 bodah

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 02:20

I've enjoyed the thread here and feel a bit more confident in getting my own ink flow problem resolved properly.


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#38 Fabienne

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 02:26

Good of you to take it on, Richard. Gosh, that is a real mess. 



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#39 GTOZack

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Posted 27 October 2013 - 01:38

so a wood chisel and a hammer is bad.

 

right guys?


'The Yo-Yo maneuver is very difficult to explain. It was first perfected by the well-known Chinese fighter pilot Yo-Yo Noritake. He also found it difficult to explain, being quite devoid of English.

So we left it at that. He showed us the maneuver after a sort.  B*****d stole my kill.'

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#40 elderberry

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Posted 27 October 2013 - 07:36

Oh wow. :) You would think they'd stop after slipping once and making a bad scratch. But they obviously just kept going. Thanks for the warning! I'll keep staying away from my nibs with a knife.


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