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Flushing / Cleaning Solution For Fountain Pen Nibs


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#1 dave321

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Posted 10 January 2018 - 20:51

after flushing the nib with distilled water, I find flushing it with eye glass (spectacle) lens cleaning solution, to be very good, followed by

further distilled water rinse.

 

the surfactants used in the lens cleaning solution are quite mild and perfect to help clean the nib and feed system.

does not contain solvents and is an aqueous solution.

 

anyone using other diy solutions(excuse the pun) I would be interested to hear.

 

NOTE I do not mean contact lens cleaning solution that contains water soluble gums.



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#2 Ron Z

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Posted 10 January 2018 - 21:26

About 10:1 water to clear ammonia, plus a few drops of Dawn dish detergent is what I use in my ultrasonic.  I also suggest a couple caps full of ammonia with a few drops of Dawn in a juice glass of water to flush a pen.  I don't use distilled water, some people do.  Flush with clear water to rinse.


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#3 praxim

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Posted 10 January 2018 - 21:53

There are two main types of cleaning solutions for spectacles. One contains a little ammonia, and is probably the one intended by dave321. The other is a concentration of isopropyl alcohol, which should be nowhere near your pens. A sniff test should work.

 

The usual advice to use a mix with clear ammonia is fine but can be rather frustrating when I find that only cloudy ammonia is legally available in stores here. Not all countries are the same. My best bet is in fact a pre-mix such as dave321 suggested, or a commercial pen flush or, in my case, a lot of soaking and flushing with perhaps (if the section is not hard rubber) a bout in the USC.

 

eta: Dawn is not a shelf product here either. Presumably there is an equivalent but I am not bothered to search it out.


Edited by praxim, 10 January 2018 - 21:54.

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#4 Sailor Kenshin

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Posted 10 January 2018 - 22:25

Anything that water can't fix gets a dose of Rapido-Eze.

#5 siamackz

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 00:54

Anything that water can't fix gets a dose of Rapido-Eze.

+1

#6 dave321

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 12:37

There are two main types of cleaning solutions for spectacles. One contains a little ammonia, and is probably the one intended by dave321. The other is a concentration of isopropyl alcohol, which should be nowhere near your pens. A sniff test should work.

 

 

no, there is no ammonia in the lens cleaning solution and no ipa either.

the composition of the solution I use is

 

water

sodium alkyl sulphonate

potassium lauryl phosphate

 

all standard surfactants and is a superb spectacle lens cleaner



#7 Chrissy

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Posted 11 January 2018 - 13:33

I tend to use Platinum International ink cleaning solution. It's slightly sudsy, so it lubricates pistons as well as cleaning them out.  :)



#8 praxim

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 03:55

 

no, there is no ammonia in the lens cleaning solution and no ipa either.

the composition of the solution I use is

 

water

sodium alkyl sulphonate

potassium lauryl phosphate

 

all standard surfactants and is a superb spectacle lens cleaner

 

Data.  :swoon:

 

Thanks for clarifying. It is useful to know specific ingredients (and concentrations when mixing) rather than 'generic product'.


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#9 oneill

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Posted 12 January 2018 - 07:31

after flushing the nib with distilled water, I find flushing it with eye glass (spectacle) lens cleaning solution, to be very good, followed by
further distilled water rinse.
 
the surfactants used in the lens cleaning solution are quite mild and perfect to help clean the nib and feed system.
does not contain solvents and is an aqueous solution.
 
anyone using other diy solutions(excuse the pun) I would be interested to hear.
 
NOTE I do not mean contact lens cleaning solution that contains water soluble gums.


Hi Oneill here all I have ever used to Flush out pens is a small drop and I mean smalldrop of
Amonia
with an
even smaller drop of detergent and clean or distilled water,that usually cleans out every bit of rubbish in a pen,if not at first keep using a little stronger fluid,it has worked for me for
years and costs virtually nothing.Good luck
Trust. Me Oneill

Edited by oneill, 12 January 2018 - 07:34.


#10 madeline

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Posted 28 February 2018 - 18:17

Any thoughts or reviews on the J. B. Perfect Pen Flush that's commercially available? (One of my fountain pens needs more help than the water flushing that I've tried.)


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#11 Ron Z

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Posted 28 February 2018 - 19:43

Commercially made pen flushes are just ammonia and a detergent in distilled water in a convenient package.  I respect those who prefer not to mix it themselves, but it isn't research level chemistry so doesn't have to be precise, and you aren't buying magic.


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#12 inkstainedruth

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Posted 28 February 2018 - 21:12

The one thing to remember if mixing your own is that if you're flushing out an acidic ink (like an iron gall ink) do NOT use ammonia (or, at least not to start with).  Instead, use the same ratio of white vinegar to water (i.e., substituting the vinegar for the ammonia).

Don't know what the water is like where Ron lives (he's roughly an hour from me) -- but where I live? Oh, yeah, I used distilled water.  I'm less concerned with the ratio of ammonia to water and more concerned with the calcium buildup around my faucets -- I don't want THAT clogging a pen feed....

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#13 tinta

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Posted 28 February 2018 - 23:01

Reverse osmosis (RO) water works just as well as distilled.  My espresso machine & my pens have enjoyed a clog free operation.  Our communal well's water is mineral rich & often discoloured.


Sailor 1911 Standards (14c nibs): *Black/gold, 0.8 mm. stub *Burgundy/gold, 0.6 mm. "round-nosed" CI & 1.1 mm. CI, *Sailor Profit Standards: Brown & Red Marbled Mozaiques, (machined acrylic/rhodium), 1.0 mm.CI & 0.8 mm. stub *Kaweco Dia2 14c M,B,BB 0.5 mm, 0.8 mm, 1.0 mm. (BLS) *Kaweco Stainless Steel Lilliput 14c 0.6 stub * Montblanc 254, 14c BB flügelfeder factory stub

#14 madeline

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 00:01

Thank you for the feedback.  And thank you, Ruth, for the warning about ammonia and acidic inks.... good to know!  Especially since the J.B. Perfect Pen Flush contains ammonia, too.


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#15 siamackz

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 00:31

Commercially made pen flushes are just ammonia and a detergent in distilled water in a convenient package.  I respect those who prefer not to mix it themselves, but it isn't research level chemistry so doesn't have to be precise, and you aren't buying magic.


Does rapidoeze fall under the pen flush category or is that something else? Same ingredients?

Edited by siamackz, 01 March 2018 - 00:31.


#16 tinta

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 04:43

Does rapidoeze fall under the pen flush category or is that something else? Same ingredients?

As far as I know, Rapidoeze is formulated for technical pens & for the special inks they use, but this product will also clean pens that use water based inks.


Edited by tinta, 01 March 2018 - 22:28.

Sailor 1911 Standards (14c nibs): *Black/gold, 0.8 mm. stub *Burgundy/gold, 0.6 mm. "round-nosed" CI & 1.1 mm. CI, *Sailor Profit Standards: Brown & Red Marbled Mozaiques, (machined acrylic/rhodium), 1.0 mm.CI & 0.8 mm. stub *Kaweco Dia2 14c M,B,BB 0.5 mm, 0.8 mm, 1.0 mm. (BLS) *Kaweco Stainless Steel Lilliput 14c 0.6 stub * Montblanc 254, 14c BB flügelfeder factory stub

#17 Ron Z

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 19:33

Does rapidoeze fall under the pen flush category or is that something else? Same ingredients?

 

Rapidoeze and pen flush are two different animals.


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#18 eckiethump

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Posted 05 March 2018 - 11:56

Rapidoeze and pen flush are two different animals.


Rapidoeze will go where pen flushes fear to tread,great stuff in the right location, technical, etc... type inks,some are wont to put in fountain pens !
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#19 Brianm_14

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 21:42

An overlooked safe cleaner is Windex or a generic competitor, without ammonia or alcohol. It is simply a very mild surfactant and a very dilute dye in purified, filtered water. We use it as a lens cleaner on microscopes, even when the research-grade lenses cost $300 or $400 each. (This use is endorsed by a rather savvy group I belong to, the Royal Microscopical Society.) It saves up to several hundred dollars a year in teaching labs in a busy university biology department, compared to commercial lens cleaners. It will not harm the soft optical glass, nor harm the various lens coatings. Works well on cameras, computer screens, etc. as well. I trust it on all my personally-owned optics, which I cannot afford to replace.

So why not use it on pens? It works fine even when diluted.

If you want ammonia, then just buy the ammonia-containing form. Just avoid the alcohol or antibacterial versions! Check the label. This sort of product might be available even in places where plain ammonia is restricted.

(You can actually make your own with some distilled or deionized water, a few drops of blue Dawn, and a few drops of blue food coloring. I just buy Windex. The point is, there are no secret, especialy-effective commercial formulas.)
Brian

#20 BaronWulfraed

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Posted 19 September 2018 - 22:39

Don't know about yours, but every bottle of Windex I've ever bought has declarations to the effect that it contains ammonia...








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