So it seems that the many warnings I've read about British pens using casein long after it had fallen out of favor in the U.S. was not enough to make me stop and think for a minute before I set a late '40s Waverly (made by Burnham, I think) to soak overnight to free a tight section.
Well, the section came loose all right, but now the last 11/2" of the threaded end of the barrel is also doing a Gumby impression:
I see myself having two repair options, neither of which seems very appetizing. One would be to soak the pen again and, when soft, roll it between two flat surfaces or try to compress it around a mandrel somehow to restore it's shape. The other would be to try and heat it, followed by the same rolling or mandrelling dance.
Does anyone here have any experience straightening deformed casein? Is it hopeless?
The consolations are that the cap was already deformed when I got the pen (as can be seen in the photos) so I didn't destroy a pristine pen and there are parts there that I can use for other things if it really is a write-off. Still, the object of fixing a pen is to make it better, not worse so I do feel a certain impulse to try and rectify my mistake. I would also consider sending it to a pro if - and only if - the repair cost didn't far exceed the value of the pen.
Any thoughts? Suggestions? Scoldings (which I probably deserve)?
Paging Ron Zorn - you see a lot of damaged plastic in the course of an average day. Am I spitting in the wind here or is there hope?
Thanks in advance to the fountain pen hive mind!