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Dry Uk Parker Duofold Juniors...what's The Deal?

parker junior duofold dry uk england vintage smooth

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#1 TruthPil

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 02:10

Hello again to all my FP friends,

 

I've got two English-made Parker Duofold Juniors from the 1950s, both bought from different sellers in different countries. One has a medium nib and the other a broad oblique stub nib and both are the smoothest nibs imaginable. I mean, ridiculously butter smooth with some nice softness to boot.

However, they both have are extremely dry writers that won't write at all unless some pressure is applied.

I've tried improving flow by using a brass shim to open up the tines a little and it has helped some, but I'm just wondering if this is a common trait of UK Duofolds.

Could the smoothness be related to a baby's bottom issue? 

 

Has anyone had similar experiences? If so, what did you do to solve the issue?

 

Thanks!


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#2 Joane

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 02:27

That broad oblique stub sounds really nice! What kind of ink do you use in them? I have a 51 left oblique desk pen in which I put Montblanc Burgundy Red ink. The pen wrote dry and scratchy. I thought I had damaged the nib. Then I flushed it and tried it with Montblanc Royal Blue. Writes like a dream, velvety and smooth with excellent flow. There may be some special dryness characteristics of the UK Duofold Jr.—not familiar with it myself—but it might be worth trying them with a variety of inks to see if it makes a difference.


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#3 mitto

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 04:26

My English aero Duofolds are all wet writers. May be you have clogged feeds in your juniors. I would soak and flush the sections, remove the nibs and feeds and give them real good cleaning.

Good luck with your Juniors.
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#4 hari317

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 04:46

Hello again to all my FP friends,
 
I've got two English-made Parker Duofold Juniors from the 1950s, both bought from different sellers in different countries. One has a medium nib and the other a broad oblique stub nib and both are the smoothest nibs imaginable. I mean, ridiculously butter smooth with some nice softness to boot.
However, they both have are extremely dry writers that won't write at all unless some pressure is applied.
I've tried improving flow by using a brass shim to open up the tines a little and it has helped some, but I'm just wondering if this is a common trait of UK Duofolds.
Could the smoothness be related to a baby's bottom issue? 
 
Has anyone had similar experiences? If so, what did you do to solve the issue?
 
Thanks!


Is the slit tightly shut when inspected against a lamp?

I have purchased sone Nos maxima duo folds from uk. I found their slits tightly shut. They gad to be opened. But go slow. Just a slight opening is enough. They will go ti firehoses v fast.

A brass shim cannot open up a slit. It can only help clean the slit.
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#5 TruthPil

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 04:46

That broad oblique stub sounds really nice! What kind of ink do you use in them? I have a 51 left oblique desk pen in which I put Montblanc Burgundy Red ink. The pen wrote dry and scratchy. I thought I had damaged the nib. Then I flushed it and tried it with Montblanc Royal Blue. Writes like a dream, velvety and smooth with excellent flow. There may be some special dryness characteristics of the UK Duofold Jr.—not familiar with it myself—but it might be worth trying them with a variety of inks to see if it makes a difference.

 

I haven't experimented yet with the OB stub, but I tried every vintage pen safe ink I could think of in the medium nibbed Junior. Always too dry. I got close to satisfactory flow after spreading the tines and using Diamine Syrah in it, but still not as well as I'd like and I had to slow down to maintain proper ink flow.

 

I have OB and OBB stub Parker 51s that are amazingly smooth. Those nibs are noticeably more crisp than the Duofold Jr stub. Both P51s are a little dry as well, but work fine with a wet flowing ink. The OB had a damaged nib so it's currently awaiting repair at Indy-Pen-Dance. I'm sure it will be perfect once I get it back. 


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#6 TruthPil

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 04:55

My English aero Duofolds are all wet writers. May be you have clogged feeds in your juniors. I would soak and flush the sections, remove the nibs and feeds and give them real good cleaning.

Good luck with your Juniors.

 

 

Thanks for the tip. Soaking and flushing with Rapido-Eez didn't help with the medium-nibbed one, but I noticed you couldn't even see through the tines. What's frustrating about that pen is that I bought it from a pen restoration place in the UK.

 

As for the OB, there was definitely some dried ink in it. I spent 30 minutes flushing it today and am still seeing purple ink coming out. Even mid cleaning and after running a shim through the tines it writes better. I suspect it will be perfect soon.  :cloud9:

 

Is there a safe way to remove the nib and feed on these pens without tools? They are very stuck in the section and I'm afraid to mess with them.

 

 

Is the slit tightly shut when inspected against a lamp?

I have purchased sone Nos maxima duo folds from uk. I found their slits tightly shut. They gad to be opened. But go slow. Just a slight opening is enough. They will go ti firehoses v fast.

A brass shim cannot open up a slit. It can only help clean the slit.

 

On one of them the slit was very tightly shut, but I've since opened them a little and it has made the pen functional, although not as wet as I'd like.

 

Thanks for confirming my suspicions about the Parker UK nibs. I've noticed they have some flex to them but are also really dry and wondered if that dryness was on purpose.

 

What are you using to spread the tines apart with?


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#7 hari317

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 05:08

 
On one of them the slit was very tightly shut, but I've since opened them a little and it has made the pen functional, although not as wet as I'd like.
 
Thanks for confirming my suspicions about the Parker UK nibs. I've noticed they have some flex to them but are also really dry and wondered if that dryness was on purpose.
 
What are you using to spread the tines apart with?

I find the tight slits a good indicator of whether the pen was ever used. I find this more common on the aero duo folds. The button fillers I found were just fine. A tight slit almost guarantees the pen could never have got used. Simply dipped tried out and kept aside.

I spread the slit by using both hands, nib imprint facing me. Left index finger nail under left shoulder, right index finger nail under the right tine shoulder, both thumbs supporting the nib face. Basically you are trying to open the slit like a scissor. Go slow. The nibs are springy and snap back. So you have to be careful. Aim for a tapered slit gap. After gapping make sure tipping halves are perfectly parallel to each other in the slit.

I find that with these aero nibs just a minuscule gap through the tipping is enough for superb flow thanks to the slight nib springiness.

Reg nib removal. These are no 10 nibs? They can be walked out with patience. Be careful to not snap the feeder breather tube.

Best is to leave the nibs alone. Dont remove. Even if you remove them successfully, getting them back in will require some tricks and tools.

Edited by hari317, 19 November 2017 - 06:05.

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#8 TruthPil

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 06:56

Thanks for the information. Yes, these are no. 10 nibs.

 

How I spread the tines was by inserting the brass shim and using it to pull each tine in the opposite direction of the other. I would pull on the shim instead of the nib itself with my fingers. 


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#9 Jerome Tarshis

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 07:16

Among the most scrupulous, opening tines by putting in a strip of metal and pulling in opposite directions is looked down upon. Infra dig. Doing what Hari described is the serious hobbyist's way to go. But we are all God's children, even those who don't do things in what the Elders consider the right way. They're only pens, as Frank Dubiel used to say. (Although he, too, used his fingers.)

 

My own Aero Duofolds have not been dry writers. One of my Duofold Juniors is an effusively and, to me, delightfully wet writer. The other is more reserved. Nowhere near impossibly dry, and becomes wetter with more refillings. The regular Aero Duofold, fat, short, is a pleasantly wet writer.

 

So, yes, "the pen was never used" is my first inference. It isn't only today's pens that have sometimes had to be improved by the user.

 

P.S.: I'm old enough to remember when those Duofolds came out, but I've forgotten, briefly, how people lived back then.

 

"Improved by the user" belongs to the world of today. In the world of yesterday, the 1950s and 1960s, but also more recently than that, the user bought pens in a proper drugstore or jewelry shop or department store, and the clerk behind the counter, experienced with pens, could, as a matter of course, do simple nib adjustments. FPN is a community of people who are very alone with their pens, compared with the way things used to be.


Edited by Jerome Tarshis, 19 November 2017 - 13:14.


#10 ac12

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Posted 23 November 2017 - 05:20

Have you tried Waterman ink?

If Waterman ink won't flow, then you have to adjust the nib.  Assuming that the feed is CLEAN.

 

I found some Diamine inks to be so saturated that they clog my pens; specifically Sherwood Green.  Very nice green, but fussy about which pen it works in.

 

Unless you are very familiar with removing nibs, I would NOT remove the nib of the pen. 

Safest is to send the pen to a pen tech with a vial of your ink and have him adjust the nib.


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#11 TruthPil

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Posted 23 November 2017 - 05:46

Have you tried Waterman ink?
If Waterman ink won't flow, then you have to adjust the nib.  Assuming that the feed is CLEAN.
 
I found some Diamine inks to be so saturated that they clog my pens; specifically Sherwood Green.  Very nice green, but fussy about which pen it works in.
 
Unless you are very familiar with removing nibs, I would NOT remove the nib of the pen. 
Safest is to send the pen to a pen tech with a vial of your ink and have him adjust the nib.


Yeah, Waterman Tender Purple is my go to testing ink for dry pens. The medium nib pen will probably need some more tine separation (I'll try the classic finger method suggested above this time), but a thorough cleaning of the OB stub seems to be doing the trick. I've been flushing it with water and letting it sit with water in the sac for 4 days and purplish water is still coming out.

I agree with you about Diamine inks. Sherwood Green and Sargasso Sea can really muck up a feed, but they are lovely hues. I prefer Herbin inks over Diamine for vintage pens, or better yet some vintage inks from the pens' manufacturers.

Edited by TruthPil, 23 November 2017 - 05:51.

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#12 hari317

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Posted 23 November 2017 - 06:41

The walls of the slit (the inner wall of the tine) must be a perfect straight line ideally. So when a nib slit is opened, we only change the angle between the slit walls. Even after slit is opened its walls must remain a straight line and the gap must reduce as the slit goes from the breather hole to through the tip  

 

fpn_1511418299__doc00286420171129112321.

 

if we pull on/lift the nib shoulders, we don't touch the slit at all, so there is no risk of damaging the straightness of slit walls. Case A where the slit walls are straight regardless of slit gap.

 

OTOH, when we use a strip of brass or film and pull on the tine, we are basically pushing against the slit wall and there is a chance the slit walls can curve outwards since there is less tine material towards the tip making that area less strong in the pushing direction. (this is the third case in sketch above). This deformation can totally wreck capillary action in the extreme case and requires much work to undo properly.

 

Pls treat this only as a helpful post, I am not a pro, I work on my own nibs only.

 

HTH.    


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#13 TruthPil

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Posted 23 November 2017 - 07:51

Thanks, Hari, that's a nice explanation. Can anyone recommend a tutorial video for this method? It'd be nice to watch someone's fingers do this.

I got the brass shim method from a Pen Habit video.

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#14 ac12

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Posted 23 November 2017 - 20:54

Get a CHEAP CHEAP pen/nib to practice on, BEFORE you touch an expensive pen.

 

And when in doubt of your own skills, PUNT.

Don't be afraid to PUNT to a pen tech, for stuff that is over your head.


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#15 Flounder

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Posted 23 November 2017 - 21:24

truthpil - just wanted to add that I've noticed English made Parker nibs of a certain age can have a slight foot ground on them rather than have the tipping left as a pure ball - my gut tells me it's too neat and parallel to be years of wear.

 

Before making adjustments, check whether there's a foot to the tipping and try matching the angle of incidence to the paper. Even with a very closed tine gap, the flow can be generous, due to the width of the foot, as is the case on the 51 and Duofold AF nibs photographed. It's a great set up for good flow under even very light writing pressure.

 

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#16 AL01

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 00:13

Thanks, Hari, that's a nice explanation. Can anyone recommend a tutorial video for this method? It'd be nice to watch someone's fingers do this.

I got the brass shim method from a Pen Habit video.

 

 Could you send a picture of the nib? 

 

 If somethin' is goin' on with the nib, we could find out right away.


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