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Need Help With A Pelikan Tortoise

pelikan tortoise 400 fix repaire piston

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12 replies to this topic

#1 Uncial

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 14:57

I have a Pelikan 400 tortoise (one of the modern re-releases) with a friction fit piston assembly. The piston got stuck and I assumed there was dried ink around the piston head. Curiously there wasn't. Even after knocking out the piston mechanism I  cleaned the barrel with q-tips and there wasn't any sign of ink. I put it all back together, cleaned everything, put grease where grease was meant to be....a problem emerged. 

 

The piston nob won't screw down tight to the barrel. When I turn the nob to plunge the piston towards the nib, the piston won't go tight to the end of the pen like it used to. Instead there is a short gap just before the end of the barrel and the whole assembly at the other end unravels and falls off, as if the piston spindle is pushing everything out. That is, the nob and mechanism that slots into the nob, but not the section that friction fits into the barrel. So the whole thing comes off in my hand. I tried to re-seat the piston mechanism entire by knocking it out again and putting it back together - same issue.

 

Can anyone help, with straight forward, easy to follow instructions?



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#2 white_lotus

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 16:05

I'm sure there are others who will comment with more knowledge, but it sounds to me like the problem is how you're fitting the end of the piston shaft into the piston knob. I think there's a "just right" positioning where the knob will go all the way down, and the piston will go to the bottom on the barrel at the stop. If the shaft is too far up on the knob the piston won't go all the way down, if not far enough, the knob won;'t go all the way down.

 

I have this issue with regular converters, so it could be the problem here. Perhaps someone will have additional comments.



#3 joss

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 16:16

Firstly, I am surprised that you could knock out the whole piston mechanism without ruining the barrel. So that is positive.

 

If I understand it right the bush (what you call section) sits tightly into the barrel but the twist knob releases when the piston is in its maximal down stroke.

 

That would happen if the twist knob, when the whole mechanism is in its closed position (piston up), is not connected far enough down onto the threads of the bush. When turning the twist knob counter clockwise (piston down), the twist knob reaches the top of the bush threads before the piston reaches the bottom of the barrel. You will end up with the twist knob in your hands.

 

Alternatively, the threads on which the twist knob turns may be worn leading to skipping of the knob. But that is something that you do not expect to happen on these new pens. Unless there is a hairline crack (in the threads or in the twist knob).


Edited by joss, 19 April 2017 - 16:17.


#4 Uncial

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 09:33

Yes, this is exactly what is happening, but do you know how to repair it? There isn't a crack or worn threads. I presume I need to reseat it somehow and I'm presuming that I need to put it all together in such a way that the entire mechanism is put together and inserted into the barrel with the piston mechanism fully closed (piston up)?



#5 Uncial

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 09:41

Ok, I just tried what I described above and it doesn't work. It feels like the bush doesn't want to go all the way down into the barrel, which is leaving a slight gap at the end when the piston nob is fully closed. I don't want to force it for fear of damaging the pen and barrel.



#6 joss

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 10:24

Yes, this is exactly what is happening, but do you know how to repair it? There isn't a crack or worn threads. I presume I need to reseat it somehow and I'm presuming that I need to put it all together in such a way that the entire mechanism is put together and inserted into the barrel with the piston mechanism fully closed (piston up)?

 

It is best, but not essential, that the piston is in the closed position when inserting the mechanism.

 

It is a bit difficult to explain but it is essential to understand that the twist knob has an optimal position onto its threads: in the optimal position, the piston will go down fully before the twist knob reaches the top of the threads and it will go up fully before the twist knob reaches the bottom of the threads. So you have to play around a little bit with all the different components when assembling the mechanism.

So it is crucial to check that the twist knob is still fully connected to the bush threads at the moment that the piston is in its lowest position. Ideally, the twist knob should reach the bottom of the threads at the same moment that the piston is fully closed (piston up).

 

So when you re-assemble the mechanism, be sure that you screw the twist knob several turns onto the bush threads before you connect the piston spindle into the spindle bush. Keep turning the knob and the piston goes up fully. Then check whether the piston goes down fully without the twist knob leaving its threads.



#7 Uncial

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 12:52

Excellent, fixed! Thank you so much.

 

I'd been reading instruction everywhere and none said to screw the nob on before engaging the spindle to the housing. As soon as I did that it worked a charm. I still have no idea how the plunger got stuck in the barrel. Maybe an ink just stripped it of lubrication.



#8 joss

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 14:15

Great that you succeeded to fix it!

 

The piston mechanisms of the modern Pelikan M400 fit very tightly into the barrel so I am wondering how you succeeded in repeated removing and inserting the mechanism. Do you use special tools for this?



#9 _InkyFingers

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 14:29

Joss. It's the same with TWSBI and others. A few twist first, then insert the plunger.

#10 joss

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 14:51

Joss. It's the same with TWSBI and others. A few twist first, then insert the plunger.

 

Do you mean that the piston mechanism has an indentation for a piston removal tool? I thought that this was only the case for the mechanisms that screw into the barrel (M800 and M1000), not for those that are friction fit.

I can be wrong, my experience is mainly with vintage Pelikan pens, not so much with the modern Mxxx series.



#11 sirgilbert357

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 14:58

I'd call it success either way if you got it back together and its working correctly...because I didn't think you were supposed to take the friction fit versions apart at all, LOL.



#12 _InkyFingers

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 18:46

My correlation is only with how the pieces are put together.  As with all pens that is disassemble-able, one needs to take care on how it is put together...regardless if it is friction or screw type. 



#13 Uncial

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 22:54

Great that you succeeded to fix it!
 
The piston mechanisms of the modern Pelikan M400 fit very tightly into the barrel so I am wondering how you succeeded in repeated removing and inserting the mechanism. Do you use special tools for this?


I unscrewed the nib and knocked it out with a wooden rod. Getting it back in requires heating the barrel end in my hand and silicone grease and patience





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: pelikan tortoise, 400, fix, repaire, piston



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