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Question For Ahab Hackers

ahab feed flow hacking cutting ebonite ebonite feed noodlers

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#1 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 03:20

You can really cut an Ahab feed in two ways:

 

1. Chip away some of the fin wall to make the channel wider, or:

 

2. Cut the fins that do not open into the center channel so that they do reach the center channel.

 

I have a supply of feeds to experiment on coming soon. I'm curious if folks have more success with approach #1, #2, or combining both ways.

 

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this already well-hashed topic. I've read loads of posts including  SamCapote's detailed Opening Up Fin Vents, but SamCapote seems to focus only on #1, which is more difficult to do than #2, so I dared to open the subject yet again, focusing on those specific points. I am aware of the need to clean the feeds, etc., before use.

 

Again, thanks for sharing your experience with me. These feeds are not expensive, but I would like to ruin as few as possible (and yes, I have ruined a few).

 

Ben



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#2 dneal

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 03:55

What are you trying to accomplish?



#3 Sridhar

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 04:16

where did you get your supply of feeds? I would want to do some experiments of my own....



#4 FoszFay

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 05:28

Hello,

I have been experimenting with my Ahab feed for the last 3 days, trying to get a wetter flow. I have done both options 1 and 2.

I cleared all four front fins (upper nib side) to the centre channel, as none were. I then widened the first front 3 fin channels (upper nib side).

I managed to increase the flow, to which I can now write continuous flex, however I am not done. I want it wetter so later tonight I will be widening some more of the fin channels.

To widen the fin channels I used a razor blade to make the fins narrower. I simply put the blade as close to the edge of the fin as possible, and pushed down. It seemed quite simple and cut through easier than I expected.

Also, just if anyone knows in this thread, what happens if I run a razor down the centre channel and deepen it?

Thanks.

Edited by FoszFay, 04 September 2014 - 05:30.


#5 Drone

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 05:37

Hi Ben,

 

I'll try to be substantive...

 

During all of the work below, in-general try to use an ink with known good behavior.

 

1. Make sure the tines on the nib are basically aligned and the spacing between the tines is correct. You would do this with any pen when it is new, not just an Ahab or Konrad. I use brass shim stock or a feeler gauge to check and help adjust the tine spacing. A magnifier or loupe is used to adjust the tine alignment. I don't do a final nib alignment and polishing until after all the other steps are done below.

2. Make sure the nib is seated properly on the feed and the feed is heat-set to the nib. You can find other threads on the FPN on how to heat set an Ebonite feed. There are two methods of heat setting, hot water and open flame. I prefer open flame as I find it more effective. Hot water is much safer - YMMV. If you have an Ebonite Konrad, be careful when setting in hot water. Don't immerse the Ebonite section in the hot water or it may get soft during the process.

Here are links to a some YouTube videos that discuss heat setting ebonite feeds.

* Nathan Tardiff's Ebonite Feed Adjustment Video (Open Flame, starts at ~16:30)

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=B1kWIUkVXPM

* FPR's (Kevin) Ebonite Heat Setting Video (Hot Water)

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=u7xG5535d68

* Brian Goulet's Heat Setting Video (Hot Water)

http://www.inknouvea...onite-feed.html

3. Make sure the channel that runs the length of the feed is unobstructed in any way throughout its length. I have two Ahab/Konrad feeds that were obviously defective in that the channel had to be hacked to clear an obstruction. To do so, I used the back of an X-acto razor knife (back of the blade, not the cutting edge) and aggressively ran the blade down the channel removing the material that was causing the obstruction..

4. Make sure the channel is clear all the way from the hole at the back of the feed through where it emerges from the feed. You can test this by blowing into the back of the feed. I have used a diaper pin to open up the hole in one case.

If adjusting and heat setting the nib and checking the channels for obstructions isn't enough to get your feed to keep up with the nib (it likely won't be enough for serious flexing), then proceed to hack the feed in the following order of priority:.

5. Cut the fins that do not open into the center channel so that they do reach the center channel. I start about a third of the way back from the tip of the nib and open opposing pairs of fins together one row at a time. Once the feed starts to feel like it can keep up with the nib, write with it for awhile before opening more channels. You may find you have increased flow enough. Remember, going backwards during the hacking process is not really an option.

6. Rarely if-ever will you will you have to actually chip away and therefore widen the channel between fins. But it is an option.

 

Best of luck, David
 



#6 Drone

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 05:43

Hello,

I have been experimenting with my Ahab feed for the last 3 days, trying to get a wetter flow. I have done both options 1 and 2.

I cleared all four front fins (upper nib side) to the centre channel, as none were. I then widened the first front 3 fin channels (upper nib side).

I managed to increase the flow, to which I can now write continuous flex, however I am not done. I want it wetter so later tonight I will be widening some more of the fin channels.

To widen the fin channels I used a razor blade to make the fins narrower. I simply put the blade as close to the edge of the fin as possible, and pushed down. It seemed quite simple and cut through easier than I expected.

Also, just if anyone knows in this thread, what happens if I run a razor down the centre channel and deepen it?

Thanks.

 

I have used the back of an X-Acto blade in the holder to scrape away at the channel running lengthwise down the feed. This however was to remove an obstacle in the feed - a defect during manufacture. If you do scrape away at the lengthwise channel, make sure you do not end up obstructing the hole in the channel.

 

Heat-setting the nib and feed is a mandatory first step.

 

I find unnecessary to have to hack the lengthwise channel. Simply opening more fins so they come into contact with the lengthwise channels is enough to increasing flow.



#7 Drone

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 05:46

Ben, Do tell us where you got your hands on some feeds. Goulet still doesn't have stock, neither do the Andersons. Obviously Nathan Tardif is having problems getting these replacement feeds to market.



#8 Algester

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 05:50

as far as I know FPR sells some ebonite feeds else t could have been asapens

http://www.gouletpen...ed_p/n18095.htm

well what you know goulet now sells them



#9 Drone

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 06:04

as far as I know FPR sells some ebonite feeds else t could have been asapens

http://www.gouletpen...ed_p/n18095.htm

well what you know goulet now sells them

 

@Algester, Thanks...

 

Wow, I stand corrected, Goulet now does have feeds. Nice find. I just went to the Goulet site and could not find the feeds, only the nibs. It did not occur to me to look under Pens > Noodler's > Noodler's Parts and Accessories. I was (foolishly?) looking under Nibs Parts & More - and couldn't find the feeds :-(



#10 FoszFay

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 09:20

 
I have used the back of an X-Acto blade in the holder to scrape away at the channel running lengthwise down the feed. This however was to remove an obstacle in the feed - a defect during manufacture. If you do scrape away at the lengthwise channel, make sure you do not end up obstructing the hole in the channel.
 
Heat-setting the nib and feed is a mandatory first step.
 
I find unnecessary to have to hack the lengthwise channel. Simply opening more fins so they come into contact with the lengthwise channels is enough to increasing flow.


Thanks, I haven't done the main, lengthwise channel, and don't intend to. I heat set my feed right away, then began "hacking" at the feed.

#11 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 19:22

What are you trying to accomplish?

 

I'm trying to keep the flow constant at the very least, and I hope increase it. I find a freshly inked Ahab is OK for a while, but as the ink is used, the flow diminishes and eventually stops. This happens with stock and with Goulet nibs.

 

I've really moved beyond the Ahab, but I have a couple that I think are gorgeous, especially with a Goulet nib, so I would love the get them to work reliably.

 

Thanks,

 

Ben



#12 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 19:25

where did you get your supply of feeds? I would want to do some experiments of my own....

 

From my personal favorite source, Goulet Pen Co.:

 

http://www.gouletpen...ed_p/n18095.htm



#13 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 19:27

Hello,

I have been experimenting with my Ahab feed for the last 3 days, trying to get a wetter flow. I have done both options 1 and 2.

I cleared all four front fins (upper nib side) to the centre channel, as none were. I then widened the first front 3 fin channels (upper nib side).

I managed to increase the flow, to which I can now write continuous flex, however I am not done. I want it wetter so later tonight I will be widening some more of the fin channels.

To widen the fin channels I used a razor blade to make the fins narrower. I simply put the blade as close to the edge of the fin as possible, and pushed down. It seemed quite simple and cut through easier than I expected.

Also, just if anyone knows in this thread, what happens if I run a razor down the centre channel and deepen it?

Thanks.

 

No, but I can tell you that John from Luxury Brands USA advised me to work on the fins, and work on the channel as a last resort, FWIW.

 

Ben



#14 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 19:29

Hi Ben,

 

I'll try to be substantive...

 

During all of the work below, in-general try to use an ink with known good behavior.

 

1. Make sure the tines on the nib are basically aligned and the spacing between the tines is correct. You would do this with any pen when it is new, not just an Ahab or Konrad. I use brass shim stock or a feeler gauge to check and help adjust the tine spacing. A magnifier or loupe is used to adjust the tine alignment. I don't do a final nib alignment and polishing until after all the other steps are done below.

2. Make sure the nib is seated properly on the feed and the feed is heat-set to the nib. You can find other threads on the FPN on how to heat set an Ebonite feed. There are two methods of heat setting, hot water and open flame. I prefer open flame as I find it more effective. Hot water is much safer - YMMV. If you have an Ebonite Konrad, be careful when setting in hot water. Don't immerse the Ebonite section in the hot water or it may get soft during the process.

Here are links to a some YouTube videos that discuss heat setting ebonite feeds.

* Nathan Tardiff's Ebonite Feed Adjustment Video (Open Flame, starts at ~16:30)

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=B1kWIUkVXPM

* FPR's (Kevin) Ebonite Heat Setting Video (Hot Water)

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=u7xG5535d68

* Brian Goulet's Heat Setting Video (Hot Water)

http://www.inknouvea...onite-feed.html

3. Make sure the channel that runs the length of the feed is unobstructed in any way throughout its length. I have two Ahab/Konrad feeds that were obviously defective in that the channel had to be hacked to clear an obstruction. To do so, I used the back of an X-acto razor knife (back of the blade, not the cutting edge) and aggressively ran the blade down the channel removing the material that was causing the obstruction..

4. Make sure the channel is clear all the way from the hole at the back of the feed through where it emerges from the feed. You can test this by blowing into the back of the feed. I have used a diaper pin to open up the hole in one case.

If adjusting and heat setting the nib and checking the channels for obstructions isn't enough to get your feed to keep up with the nib (it likely won't be enough for serious flexing), then proceed to hack the feed in the following order of priority:.

5. Cut the fins that do not open into the center channel so that they do reach the center channel. I start about a third of the way back from the tip of the nib and open opposing pairs of fins together one row at a time. Once the feed starts to feel like it can keep up with the nib, write with it for awhile before opening more channels. You may find you have increased flow enough. Remember, going backwards during the hacking process is not really an option.

6. Rarely if-ever will you will you have to actually chip away and therefore widen the channel between fins. But it is an option.

 

Best of luck, David
 

 

Thanks so much for this detailed answer, David!

 

Ben



#15 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 19:31

Ben, Do tell us where you got your hands on some feeds. Goulet still doesn't have stock, neither do the Andersons. Obviously Nathan Tardif is having problems getting these replacement feeds to market.

 

No, 

 

Ben, Do tell us where you got your hands on some feeds. Goulet still doesn't have stock, neither do the Andersons. Obviously Nathan Tardif is having problems getting these replacement feeds to market.

 

No, David, Goulet does have them:

 

http://www.gouletpen...ed_p/n18095.htm

 

Ben



#16 TSherbs

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 19:59

thanks for all the advice here



#17 iRabb

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 20:41

thanks for all the advice here

 

Yes indeed, thanks to all y'all for your contributions to the thread.



#18 dneal

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 20:50

 

I'm trying to keep the flow constant at the very least, and I hope increase it. I find a freshly inked Ahab is OK for a while, but as the ink is used, the flow diminishes and eventually stops. This happens with stock and with Goulet nibs.

 

I've really moved beyond the Ahab, but I have a couple that I think are gorgeous, especially with a Goulet nib, so I would love the get them to work reliably.

 

Thanks,

 

Ben

 

Got it.  I don't have my Noodler's at home, but I have some pics of an Omas feed I'll use instead.

 

Note the channel.  The narrow part at the bottom is where the ink is pulled via capillary action.  You can make it deeper, but you don't really want to make it wider.  The wider portion is the air channel.

 

OmasFeed003_zpsdd5efb25.jpg

 

First, you want to make sure it's clear of obstructions.  As already noted, the back of an exacto knife is great for this.  The important part is to make sure you drag from the tip of the feed to the opposite end.  The ink channel is ramped toward the tip (which is how the ink gets to the nib).  If you go the other way, you can destroy the ramp and cut the feed all the way to the end of the tip (not good).

 

OmasFeed002_zps1e2e9777.jpg

 

Then, clean it really good with some soapy water and a tooth brush.

 

Then, set the feed (it gets pliable very quickly).  Use the water method.

 

Make sure the slit on the nib is lined up with the slit in the feed, and not offset (this can prevent air from getting back into the reservoir).

 

This example is from a Kaweco.

 

KawecoAdjust001_zpsf5ac24fa.jpg

 

That is aligned, and correct.  This next one is not:

 

KawecoAdjust013_zpscef5eb19.jpg

 

Your pen should work great at this point.  If you are flexing heavily, and it can't keep up; then you need to look at deepening the channel or widening the fins.



#19 iRabb

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Posted 09 September 2014 - 03:10

Dneal, that is one of the advantages of putting a Goulet nib on a Noodlers pen. The Goulet nib has a breather hole, but the stock Ahab/Konrad nib does not.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: ahab, feed, flow, hacking, cutting, ebonite, ebonite feed, noodlers



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