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Sheaffer's Plunger Fillers?

sheaffer plunger fillers identification repair

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16 replies to this topic

#1 kircher

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Posted 29 November 2014 - 18:54

I've recently bought these two pens, not knowing exactly what I was going to do with them. I suppose they are plunger fillers but I'm not sure, and I have no idea how to proceed. The plunger of the darker one moves quite freely (not much, though), while the plunger on the striped one is completely stuck and if i can only unscrew the blind cap. suggestions?

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#2 kirchh

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Posted 30 November 2014 - 04:48

Are you looking for suggestions for a qualified restorer? You'll need one if you would like to use the pens or have them made functional.

 

--Daniel


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#3 kircher

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Posted 30 November 2014 - 16:26

I wanted to have my opinion confirmed first. Are they really plunger fillers? I'm not sure they are worth sending out for restoration. The nib on the darker one is very interesting, but the pen is covered in scratches and has a name poorly inscribed on the cap. The striped one has a standard feathertouch nib.



#4 FarmBoy

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Posted 30 November 2014 - 16:59

I wanted to have my opinion confirmed first. Are they really plunger fillers? I'm not sure they are worth sending out for restoration. The nib on the darker one is very interesting, but the pen is covered in scratches and has a name poorly inscribed on the cap. The striped one has a standard feathertouch nib.


They are plunger filler or sometimes called wire filler pens. There are other names as well. Would think they are worthy of restoration.
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#5 welch

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Posted 30 November 2014 - 17:52

Scratches are no big deal. Most can be smoothed out. One looks to have teeth-marks on the cap, but even teeth-marks can be disguised. Under the cosmetic faults these are important pens. 

 

The plunger-fill will need an expert: many pen-rehab people shy away from them. Two Sheaffer experts: Ron Zorn and Sherrell Tyree; I suspect Daniel can do this work, but I've never asked. 

 

Both pens look classy...as Farmboy says, "worthy of restoration". My opinion: Sheaffer and Parker pens from the '30s and '40s were made when the fountain pen was the equivalent of a word-processor. They were the leading companies in a mainstream market. They competed on quality, including innovation in filling systems. Current pens sell into a niche; there has not been a technological innovation since the Parker 45 popularized cartridge/converter filling systems in all-component pens. That was about 1960 or '61.

 

These two are among the best fountain pens from the best time for fountain pens.  


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#6 Ron Z

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Posted 30 November 2014 - 20:46

They are plunger filler or sometimes called wire filler pens. There are other names as well. Would think they are worthy of restoration.

I do restore these.  I also lift tooth marks out of celluloid.  If you contact me, please use the email link on the website, not PM.


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#7 kircher

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 19:37

If i decided to fix them myself what kind of tools would you recommend?



#8 kirchh

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Posted 02 December 2014 - 20:10

Well, tools are just tools; they are applied to techniques, so first you need to learn the techniques involved in this repair. I suggest doing some reading on the topic (a search here in the forum for Sheaffer vacuum filler repair is a good place to start, as is this article); then you can select or make the tools you decide you need, and then you should gain some experience on parts pens or junkers before taking on a pen you'd like to have a fair degree of confidence you can restore to proper function.

 

--Daniel


Edited by kirchh, 02 December 2014 - 20:10.

"The greatest mental derangement is to believe things because we want them to be true, not because we observe that they are in effect." --Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet

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Purveyor of the iCroScope digital loupe


#9 BamaPen

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Posted 05 December 2014 - 01:22

As one who has "been there" please consider this:  If you don't anticipate repairing many of the Sheaffer vac-fill pens, do not buy tools and waste your time and money trying to learn how it is done.  If you do, fine.  Otherwise, send these two to a qualified restorer.  They will return them in better than new condition for less money than you will spend trying to do it yourself.  These are not an easy repair job and your chances of getting it right are not all that good.

 

How do I know this?  Personal experience.  I did successfully repair a couple, but I also destroyed a couple more in the process.  The parts for the two I repaired cost nearly as much as paying someone who knows how.  I now send mine to Gerry Berg, but Ron Z does great work as well, and he can do that cosmetic repair better than almost anyone.

 

John



#10 GardenCity-NY

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Posted 05 December 2014 - 14:23

These are very nice looking pens... These are not the type to practice restoration on IMO.  I'd have them professionally restored.  I've used Mr. Zorn in the past with delightful results...


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#11 kircher

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Posted 05 December 2014 - 21:33

Thanks! I leave them rest for now while I fix my first vacumatics and then I'll figure out what to do. They are nice, but just the usual Sheaffer's writing experience in terms of nibs.



#12 adyf

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Posted 06 December 2014 - 11:30

 

How do I know this?  Personal experience.  I did successfully repair a couple, but I also destroyed a couple more in the process.  The parts for the two I repaired cost nearly as much as paying someone who knows how.  I now send mine to Gerry Berg, but Ron Z does great work as well, and he can do that cosmetic repair better than almost anyone.

 

John

 

Me too, they're certainly trickier than your average snorkel or vacumatic restoration. You have to be so careful especially removing the nib and feed. I've broke a few feeds even with fountainbels tools. The feeds seem very fragile.



#13 fountainbel

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Posted 09 December 2014 - 20:37

 

Me too, they're certainly trickier than your average snorkel or vacumatic restoration. You have to be so careful especially removing the nib and feed. I've broke a few feeds even with fountainbels tools. The feeds seem very fragile.

Hi adyf,

Sorry to read you broke some feeds when using my Triumph nib removal tools, this should not happen.

Note that you have two tools- each with a different cone angle - coping with the two cone angles  Sheaffer used over time

It is paramount to use the tool which fits perfectly around the the nib cone.

When  using the tool with the larger cone  angle on a nib having the smaller cone  - or inversely -  the tool will slightly pivot off center and locking the tool's feed key one risks to crack the feed.

So always first install the tool - without the feed key in it - over the nib and check on both sides of the tool if the tool contacts the nib on both sides.

When you see a gap on either side you have to use the other tool.

Hope this helps.

Francis



#14 adyf

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Posted 11 December 2014 - 16:35

Hi adyf,

Sorry to read you broke some feeds when using my Triumph nib removal tools, this should not happen.

Note that you have two tools- each with a different cone angle - coping with the two cone angles  Sheaffer used over time

It is paramount to use the tool which fits perfectly around the the nib cone.

When  using the tool with the larger cone  angle on a nib having the smaller cone  - or inversely -  the tool will slightly pivot off center and locking the tool's feed key one risks to crack the feed.

So always first install the tool - without the feed key in it - over the nib and check on both sides of the tool if the tool contacts the nib on both sides.

When you see a gap on either side you have to use the other tool.

Hope this helps.

Francis

 

Hi Francis,

 

I'm certainly not insinuating that there is something wrong with the tools. More my inexperience and perhaps heavy handedness. The feeds just seem to be quite brittle and prone to breaking.



#15 Ron Z

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 15:27

The feeds can indeed be rather brittle.  Rely on the pressure of the tool to loosen the nib, not the key against the feed.  Press the tool firmly against the nib, then insert the key and tighten the screw finger tight.   Do not over tighten the screw on the key.   You may have to press the tool against the nib again before you are done.   You need to get the section warmer than you think - I use a non-contact infared thermometer to measure the section temperature multiple times while removing the nib.  It should be between 150 and 160 degrees F.  Don't try to force the nib to unscrew NOW.  Gentle, steady, persistent pressure at temperature.  Once you feel it start to give, you're on your way, though you may have to warm the section again, or a couple more times, before you get the nib all of the way out of the pen.

 

Once you have the nib out, do not pull on the nib unit to remove it.  Rather push on the shoulders of the nib to free it from the tool.  Pulling can break the collar.  ...ask me how I know.  Pushing puts the stress on the strongest part of the assembly - the nib itself.


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#16 fountainbel

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 21:07

Once you have the nib out, do not pull on the nib unit to remove it.  Rather push on the shoulders of the nib to free it from the tool.  Pulling can break the collar.  ...ask me how I know.  Pushing puts the stress on the strongest part of the assembly - the nib itself.

Fully right Ron !

Thanks for adding this important complementary  advice !

In fact I always do it these way, alter having the same bad experience as you did…. 

Francis



#17 Ron Z

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 21:39

In case you've missed my comments here on FPN before, I wouldn't even think of trying to remove a Triumph nib without Francis' tool.  Without it, your chances of success are 50% at best.  With it, you're close to a 100% success rate.  I bought mine about 8 years ago and have done a few hundred since then.  (I know  how many 0-rings I've used :) )


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