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What Did I Do Wrong?

esterbrook broken body

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19 replies to this topic

#1 tracie

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 20:25

Dear Pen Lovers,

 

I found an Esterbrook in my husbands garage sale finds. He was collecting used pens as he looses them.

 

Of course, I fell in love. I researched what it is and then I went to the LA  Pen show.  There was a very nice person, who gave me a new ink bag. I filled it and have used the pen 5 or 6 times since. I noticed last week that it split in half.  I never dropped it. I filled it very gently, as I have seen these pens with bent levers, maybe 3 or 4 pumps.?

It is still usable, and is not leaking yet. Could I have over filled the bag? Are all older pens in danger of breaking? Did I hold the body too tight? I do not feel that I hold pens roughly. I do not tap the desk with them, nor throw them at the cat.

But I am afraid to touch it.  Is this pen in danger of leaking? Are the older pens to delicate to be used? I was gifted an older Parker piston and I have it wrapped in cotton until I can figure this out.

Thank you for your time.

Tracie

 

 

I am very new to this hobby. And I have only written in a forum 2 times.

So if this is the wrong place then, first I apologize. Is this an Esterbrook forum or repair forum or a parker forum? 2nd please direct me how to FIND the correct place (and 3rd please direct me to an instruction page on forums. OK, maybe make that the first.)

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#2 langere

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 20:29

Hi Tracie,

 

I think you just had bad luck.  Of course some of the older used pens have been through a lot.  Probably tere was a hairline fracture already and it just split.  It can happen, as it does with any plastic.  New pens (whether fountain pens or ballpoint pens) sometimes break as well.

 

I'm sorry this happened to you - I can assure you that this is not common.  

 

Erick


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#3 tracie

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 20:36

Thank you for your quick response.

I can simply push the two ends together but do you feel it is in danger of leaking?



#4 ac12

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 20:41

 

Thank you for your quick response.
I can simply push the two ends together but do you feel it is in danger of leaking?

 

I would NOT use the cracked pen. It would be all too easy to twist or bend the pen, and you will get a MESS of ink. It is best just retired.
The problem is how to splint the barrel so it remains in position, and not bend or twist. The only solution that I can think of is rather UGLY, to put a split tube on the OUTSIDE of the pen.

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#5 tracie

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 20:47

so sad, but thank you



#6 Sailor Kenshin

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 20:51

Thank you for your quick response.
I can simply push the two ends together but do you feel it is in danger of leaking?



That's a shame...pretty copper color, too! Esterbrooks work very well as dip pens, however, so you really might want to repair the body and just use it as a dipper.

#7 T4TEXAS

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 21:00

Whatever you do, save the nib, which can be used on another Estie.


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#8 Arthur's Mom

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 21:50

   

I would NOT use the cracked pen. It would be all too easy to twist or bend the pen, and you will get a MESS of ink. It is best just retired.
The problem is how to splint the barrel so it remains in position, and not bend or twist. The only solution that I can think of is rather UGLY, to put a split tube on the OUTSIDE of the pen.

 

This may be a silly idea. Or just far to ambitious an undertaking. 

 

Why not try to fuse the plastic back together at the crack.

Take the pen apart (get the sack out of the way), use a small of a solvent like acetone on the broken ends, gently press them back together and allow them to basically melt back together. (the bonding shouldn't take long as acetone evaporates quickly) Allow it to harden a few days. Probably a little buffing would then make the break nearly unnoticeable.This could avoid an ugly splint stuck to the outside of the barrel.

 

The biggest issue I can think of would be, if the barrel was shortened by the process to the point that the lever would not set  flush with the barrel.

If I was trying this myself and that happens. I would probably try to figure out a way to gently remove enough material where the lever sets into the barrel.


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#9 Sasha Royale

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Posted 29 February 2016 - 22:15

I doubt that you or your husband did anything to cause the break.  There was a structural weakness that eventually failed.  It could have been original this pen, or have developed over the past 70 years.  (70 is pretty old.)  Repair is an option, but it may be just as cheap to replace.  J-series Esterbrooks are not rare, and not too expensive.  Keep this one for spare parts.  Value of the spare parts might be $20.    

 

The ink delicate sac is no longer protected by the pen body.  If you puncture, tear, or dislodge it, the ink will be released into the environment (table, hands, clothes).  Do you have another, usable pen ?  

 

I have broken a number of fountain pens, over the years, mostly due to sitting on them.  (slow learner)  It's always sad.  Happily, in your case, it isn't messy.  

 

Write with joy.  


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#10 tracie

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 00:52

Thank you,

Thank you all for so many great suggestions. The body, so far, comes together tightly. I  have been using it as a dip pen, because I had not finished with red ink and wanted to use a new purple ink. And isn't this the thrill with fountain pens? To my surprise, It worked quite well.

The next time I make it to Monrovia and this store is open. (Rats for Mondays) I will try to find a replacement.

 

And if I might impose one more time:

What does   mean?

 

May you all have a great day,

Tracie



#11 Arthur's Mom

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 01:47

  is code for  "non-breaking space"  

 

the poster did not intended for that to show up. 

 

edit: spelling


Edited by Arthur's Mom, 01 March 2016 - 01:50.

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#12 Runnin_Ute

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 02:16

Thank you,

Thank you all for so many great suggestions. The body, so far, comes together tightly. I  have been using it as a dip pen, because I had not finished with red ink and wanted to use a new purple ink. And isn't this the thrill with fountain pens? To my surprise, It worked quite well.

The next time I make it to Monrovia and this store is open. (Rats for Mondays) I will try to find a replacement.

 

And if I might impose one more time:

What does   mean?

 

May you all have a great day,

Tracie

Esterbrook's are easily found on ebay (for example) I recently paid $11 for a very nice gray one. It needed the sac replaced, but you only have to buy materials once and they last a long time. Once you have shellac and talc, a new sac is only $2.

 

Here is a copper for about $25+shipping on a buy it now.

 

http://www.ebay.com/...TYAAOSwQYZWwj3m

 

No indication whether it needs a new sac....


Brad
 
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#13 tracie

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 03:15

Oh you are a devilish one aren't you :) Ebay!!

 

Now I need one in another color.

Hmmm how many colors can I have?

I am liking this group more and more.

Thank you, Soo very much.



#14 dasXFnib

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 09:07

Oh you are a devilish one aren't you :) Ebay!!

 

Now I need one in another color.

Hmmm how many colors can I have?

I am liking this group more and more.

Thank you, Soo very much.

There is an Esterbrook section in this Forum...listed under "BRAND FOCUS"....

As an Estie collector myself....I'm sorry you had bad luck so early on...

As others have said....this type of problem with Esterbrooks is RARE!! In fact, a large percentage of Esties are in AMAZING shape, considering their age, per se....

A good thing about collecting Esties....it's a rabbit hole you can fall into....and still come out with your shirt!! (read: not a lot of $$ for some good pens!!)

 

Always try to get the dibs...on fountain pens with EF nibs!!



#15 Sailor Kenshin

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 12:44

Oh you are a devilish one aren't you :) Ebay!!
 
Now I need one in another color.
Hmmm how many colors can I have?
I am liking this group more and more.
Thank you, Soo very much.



And, y'know, the entire nib unit simply unthreads, and can be threaded in to a new Estie. ;)

#16 tracie

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 19:13

I have always been afraid to buy a pen and not try it first. I am lucky I liked  the reasonable Esterbrooks. The whole nib is in one piece, but I don't think the nibs are interchangeable? why do you like ef nibs?

 

 

and thank you again



#17 rwilsonedn

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Posted 01 March 2016 - 20:29

As others have said, the crack doesn't appear to be from anything you might have done to the pen. Some Estis become rather brittle with age. That said, by all means take the pen to the Monrovia shop next time you go. They are great folks, and can probably talk you through an easy repair. It won't be invisible, but you should be able to cement the barrel so the pen will be as good as new. And no, the pen will not leak unless something bends, compresses, or punctures the sac inside the barrel. Sacs are tough. So you should be able to still use it with a little care, even in that condition.

And by the way, welcome to FPN and to the endless world of Estis--as in "wait, I've never seen that color in a J before ..."

ron



#18 FarmBoy

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Posted 02 March 2016 - 07:42

A replacement barrel would run about $10.  Rather simple fix.


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#19 KBeezie

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Posted 02 March 2016 - 07:53

A replacement barrel would run about $10.  Rather simple fix.


It can even be mended (had a Write on Time repair my parker 51 aero that cracked in half, but a replacement barrel for that is a little more than the 15 to 20 it cost to mend).

#20 FarmBoy

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Posted 03 March 2016 - 04:41

It can even be mended (had a Write on Time repair my parker 51 aero that cracked in half, but a replacement barrel for that is a little more than the 15 to 20 it cost to mend).

What barrel?  Likely can source a replacement.


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