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Hard Start On New Pilot Custom 74

pilot custom 74 nib dry hard start

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#1 msoulier

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 02:37

Hi,

 

I bought a Custom 74 recently, and it was very dry attempting to write on Rhodia paper with Iroshizuku ink. I took it apart, widened the nib tines until I could see light all the way to the tip, made sure that the tines were aligned and tried again.

 

Now the pen writes quite well, when it writes. Unfortunately, it does occasionally hard-start on Rhodia paper, especially on upstrokes and side-strokes.

 

As far as I can tell, it does not have baby's bottom, and the tines are well aligned. I don't want to go to micro mesh if it doesn't need it.

 

When I write on lousy copier paper, it's fine.

 

I'm at my wit's end with this nib. The pen seems perfectly wet so I don't think it's a feed issue. What else could cause this behaviour?

 

Thanks,

Mike



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#2 Bluey

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 02:46

Did you flush it with dish soap and water when you first got it? It needs to be asked because almost all initial flow problems are due to this

 

btw for future reference, I would strongly recommend not altering the nib in any way until you've tried more simple and easily reversible solutions first (such as the above). It's best to eliminate those as being the cause first.


Edited by Bluey, 24 January 2017 - 02:59.

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#3 msoulier

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 03:14

Did you flush it with dish soap and water when you first got it? It needs to be asked because almost all initial flow problems are due to this

 

btw for future reference, I would strongly recommend not altering the nib in any way until you've tried more simple and easily reversible solutions first (such as the above). It's best to eliminate those as being the cause first.

Yes, I did. 



#4 Bluey

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 03:33

Ok.

What width is the nib?

The Pilot Custom 74 tends towards being dry and sometimes overly smooth nibs will skip on much less absorbent paper such as Rhodia. I have an SF which is ok on both, but I'm supposing that your nib is wider which may exacerbate the issue. 

 

Maybe it's a converter issue, although the fact that it's fine on absorbent paper would discount this. I have a Waterman Carene that had some skipping issues but were eliminated when I changed to using the cartridges, so that may be worth trying although I don't think it is.


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#5 max dog

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 04:24

As far as I can tell, it does not have baby's bottom, and the tines are well aligned. I don't want to go to micro mesh if it doesn't need it.

 

When I write on lousy copier paper, it's fine.

 

It still sounds like possibly baby bottoms or mis-aligned tines.  Although the tines may look properly aligned visually, question is what is happening at the point where the nib makes contact with the paper?

 

Hold the pen as you would when you normally write.  On Rhodia paper, gently tap the nib to paper to make 5 consecutive dots.  If you have problem getting 5 consecutive dots consistently, you may still have baby bottoms or slightly mis-aligned tines.  See if changing the angle of the pen relative to the paper makes a difference.

 

Hope that helps


Edited by max dog, 24 January 2017 - 04:32.


#6 msoulier

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 13:43

It's a medium.

 

Ok.

What width is the nib?



#7 msoulier

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 14:44

It still sounds like possibly baby bottoms or mis-aligned tines.  Although the tines may look properly aligned visually, question is what is happening at the point where the nib makes contact with the paper?

 

Hold the pen as you would when you normally write.  On Rhodia paper, gently tap the nib to paper to make 5 consecutive dots.  If you have problem getting 5 consecutive dots consistently, you may still have baby bottoms or slightly mis-aligned tines.  See if changing the angle of the pen relative to the paper makes a difference.

 

Hope that helps

 

The problem is less frequent than that. I can typically tap my way across the paper without issue, and then suddenly I'll get a skip or two. When I'm writing usually it will suddenly happen on the upstroke of an "s" or "n", or crossing a "t". I've managed to get it to where it's not frequent, but I haven't eliminated it. 

 

I'm debating simply returning it. Pens as this price point should be perfect out of the box.



#8 Bluey

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 16:11

Another possibility is hand oils. Does it usually occur on the bottom half of the page?


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#9 msoulier

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 16:40

Another possibility is hand oils. Does it usually occur on the bottom half of the page?

Not that I've noticed but I haven't been looking for that. If it does I'll let you know. 



#10 msoulier

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 16:47

The other problem I'm finding is that when I adjust the nib, the gold is much more elastic than the steel nibs I'm used to adjusting. So, I widen the nib slit to perfection, and within a day it closes again. Perhaps I need to widen it much more so when it springs back it's where I want it?



#11 TSherbs

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Posted 24 January 2017 - 20:11

The other problem I'm finding is that when I adjust the nib, the gold is much more elastic than the steel nibs I'm used to adjusting. So, I widen the nib slit to perfection, and within a day it closes again. Perhaps I need to widen it much more so when it springs back it's where I want it?


How would just writing result in the nib slit narrowing? Seems weird to me.. Do not work more to widen that slit until you here from more folks here, and don't mess with it if you are going to return it.

Edited by TSherbs, 24 January 2017 - 20:12.


#12 msoulier

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Posted 25 January 2017 - 00:22

How would just writing result in the nib slit narrowing? Seems weird to me.. Do not work more to widen that slit until you here from more folks here, and don't mess with it if you are going to return it.

I don't think the writing is doing it. I think the gold is springing back to its original shape due to the elastic nature of the metal. I haven't written with it much lately.



#13 max dog

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Posted 25 January 2017 - 06:56

Did it make a difference between using a cartridge and converter?  

 

Maybe try adjust the angle you hold the pen to see if that makes a difference.  I had some occasional skipping with my Falcon when I wrote normally (45 degrees). Because the nib is long, I tended to hold my pens at a low angle. Problem goes away when I hold the pen at a slightly higher angle relative to the paper than I normally do,   Railroads less too.  Who knows maybe it has a sweet spot.



#14 msoulier

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Posted 25 January 2017 - 19:52

Did it make a difference between using a cartridge and converter?  

 

Maybe try adjust the angle you hold the pen to see if that makes a difference.  I had some occasional skipping with my Falcon when I wrote normally (45 degrees). Because the nib is long, I tended to hold my pens at a low angle. Problem goes away when I hold the pen at a slightly higher angle relative to the paper than I normally do,   Railroads less too.  Who knows maybe it has a sweet spot.

I didn't see a difference, no.

 

So, I washed it previously with soap and water, so I went a bit harsher and included some ammonia. Then I noticed that the nib slit was closed again, so I took two brass sheets and left them in the slit for a while.

 

Later, when I removed them, the nib mostly held the position for over an hour, so I reassembled it and inked it up with Iroshizuku Kon Peki.

 

It has since not skipped or hard started once in several pages. So I am cautiously optimistic that this has fixed the problem.

 

Thanks all.







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