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A Few Wee Cracks

twsbi eco barrel cracks

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48 replies to this topic

#1 Nibbler

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 21:07

Firstly, I really, really love my two Ecos. I have other pens, but since I have owned one, it is a TWSBI that I usually I pick up. The 1.1 stub is amazing, but that is another thread. I have noticed a few small cracks on the barrel where the nib section fits in. I am a serial flusher - because I like to change colour (don't they just look wonderful in this pen?) - so I wonder if the removing of the nib/section has caused this? I bought the pen in June last year so about seven months old. 

 

Anyone else experienced this? What do we think?

 

Ta a lot.

 

David

 

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#2 Uncial

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 23:16

Why are you pulling the nib and feed to clean the pen?

#3 Jamerelbe

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 23:37

Why are you pulling the nib and feed to clean the pen?

 

The nib and feed in the Eco are only loosely friction fit - they come out very easily.  I also remove the piston mechanism when changing colours, because no amount of flushing can get rid of the last bit of inky water that gets trapped near the hole between ink reservoir and feed.  That kind of cracking suggests *either* that the OP has been incredibly rough with their pen, OR (I suspect this is more likely!) that there's some fault with the material for this particular pen.  I'd suggest contacting the manufacturer (twsbiinc@gmail.com) for customer service / warranty support, or getting in touch with whoever sold the pen to you.

 

None of my 3 Ecos have done this - despite the fact that I, too, pull them out fairly routinely to get rid of excess 'shimmer' from my Shimmertastic inks...



#4 Corona688

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 23:52

Most transparent plastics do that eventually.

#5 migo984

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 06:44

Why are you pulling the nib and feed to clean the pen?

My thoughts too. I have several Eco pens & change the ink in them frequently. Very rarely pull the nib just for cleaning purposes as it is usually unnecessary. Same as I dont pull the nibs in my other friction fit piston fillers each time I clean them.

With TWSBIs and similar, given the tendency of transparent plastic to cracking Id rather err on the cautious side.

The residual clean water drops are really very minor and dont affect the next fill. Or if you are bothered by them just leave nib down on kitchen paper to wick out & dry completely. Most piston fillers have residual water drops after cleaning; just that they are more obvious in transparent pens.

I read several threads on Reddit where Eco owners discuss pulling nibs & dismantling them every time for cleaning. They think it is what you are *supposed* to do, because disassembly instructions are sent with each pen re piston removal etc. Im pretty sure it is not what @Speedy intended for his pens.

I would add that I never use shimmer/sparkly inks. If you have to dismantle a pen to clean the particles out properly that suggests to me they shouldnt be used in those FPs in the first place. Easier to use a dip pen, or just buy a cheap glitter gel pen if you like that particular aesthetic - writing done with them looks exactly the same ;-)

Edited for typo.

Edited by migo984, 21 February 2018 - 06:46.

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#6 Parkette

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 07:03

Why are you pulling the nib and feed to clean the pen?

 

 

My father gave advice to us on the basis of just because you can does not mean that you should.

 

The instruction sheet with twsbi pens shows how to take the pen apart including the removal of the nib and feed. No warnings or caveats other than air is introduced into the barrel. No warnings about a sloppy fit in the section or the potential to cause cracks, perhaps if you are heavy handed.

 

As experienced pen users we know that the removal of the nib and feed is not something to be undertaken lightly.

 

I would be saying to Twsbi, you have produced a pen that can be dismantled by the average person and show how the pen is to be taken apart without any warnings or an explanation of the consequences.

 

If cracking of the pen is due to the removal and reinsertion of the nib and feed then this must be the responsibility of

Twsbi, at least in part.

 

I have my brothers Eco in front of me, thankfully crack free. He asked that I wrote to twsbi about the staining of the barrel and whether they could help. First question they asked was about the ink that had been used, when told that it was Diamine they said that they could not help because it was user error for filling the pen with a saturated ink.

 

This was despite the fact that the pen has only been filled three times in six months, I thought that their customer service  was poor.

 

Basic advice on Twsbi pens, based on experience, is leave the nib alone, use non saturated ink and only take the pen apart if you really must do so.

 

Edit: apologies to Migo, I hate to repeat the good avice given by others in previous posts, I rant away and then scrolled up to see that we are pretty much on the same page.


Edited by Parkette, 21 February 2018 - 07:05.

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#7 Chrissy

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 07:49

I have noticed a few small cracks on the barrel where the nib section fits in. I am a serial flusher - because I like to change colour (don't they just look wonderful in this pen?) - so I wonder if the removing of the nib/section has caused this? I bought the pen in June last year so about seven months old. 

 

 

It's almost certainly caused by the fact that you're unnecessarily pulling the nib out every time you clean the pen. :huh:  Just because you're a "serial flusher" doesn't mean you need to pull out the nib and feed to flush the pen clean. :)   You can get it clean without pulling the nib out.  -_-



#8 Drubbing

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 13:27

A lot of angst and rant in some posts.

 

The point of a TWSBI Eco is that it can be stripped down and thoroughly cleaned - if need be. I find it gets clean with a good flush and wrapping in absorbent paper to syphon the feed. With a clear pen it's pretty obvious when it's clean and dry.

 

But TWSBI make it possible to change your own nibs very easily, but is probably only meant to do done occasionally.

 

You have to use some common sense and remember this is as cheap as a piston filling pen gets, so it's not going to withstand constant strip downs. I don't think my seemingly rugged vintage pens would take kindly to being stripped down and serviced every ink change. They probably wouldn't last too long with that sort of over handling.



#9 Parkette

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 14:33

A lot of angst and rant in some posts.

 

The point of a TWSBI Eco is that it can be stripped down and thoroughly cleaned - if need be. I find it gets clean with a good flush and wrapping in absorbent paper to syphon the feed. With a clear pen it's pretty obvious when it's clean and dry.

 

But TWSBI make it possible to change your own nibs very easily, but is probably only meant to do done occasionally.

 

You have to use some common sense and remember this is as cheap as a piston filling pen gets, so it's not going to withstand constant strip downs. I don't think my seemingly rugged vintage pens would take kindly to being stripped down and serviced every ink change. They probably wouldn't last too long with that sort of over handling.

 

 

Not sure that you have added anything to what has already been said, If you are saying that that a pen should only be stripped down occasionally, then the only issue is what is meant by the word occasionally. The point that Migo and I have made is to leave the feed and nib where they are as it is thought that the removal and reinsertion of the feed and nib is likely to be the cause of the cracking.

 

Logically, it would seem to me that it cannot be anything else.


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#10 LizEF

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 15:11

I agree with the idea that unless nib removal has been abnormally rough, it's not likely the problem.  Further, pressing firmly (as in, too firmly) on the nib while writing is as likely to cause the same sort of stress.  The simple fact is, this is a known problem with TWSBI pens, and TWSBI are fabulous about replacing the barrel (only the barrel, without piston, knob, nib, or feed).

 

So, Nibbler, email your photo to TWSBI (or wait until the section cracks enough to start leaking, so-as to extend the lifetime of your replacement), and ask if this is covered - I provided purchase details (date, place, etc.).  Assuming nothing has changed, they'll ask you to use PayPal to cover shipping the replacement barrel, and ship one out to you.

 

As for Parkette's stained barrel - perhaps research stain-removing inks - a few have been reported (Sailor Doyou and Noodler's Red Rattler Eel, as I recall, but please do a search and read up about stain removal before buying one of these).



#11 Parkette

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 16:08

Hi Liz

 

 

The inks that you mention Sailor Doyou and Noodler's Red Rattler Eel have not been used in this pen, the only two inks have been Parker washable blue and a Diamine, the Parker caused no problems.

 

I think that the most likely cause of the cracking is due to the insertion of the nib and feed, I cannot imagine anyone being capable of putting so much pressure on the nib that it causes plastic to crack can you, really?


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#12 Chrissy

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 16:28

A lot of angst and rant in some posts.

 

Huh?  :huh:



#13 Parkette

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 16:56

 

Huh?  :huh:

 

 

He must be new.

 

:unsure:


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#14 LizEF

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 17:31

The inks that you mention Sailor Doyou and Noodler's Red Rattler Eel have not been used in this pen, the only two inks have been Parker washable blue and a Diamine, the Parker caused no problems.

 

I didn't mean using them stains the pen - I mean using them removes stains - that's right, some other ink stains the pen, but using these inks removes that stain.  There are threads about this - I have not experienced it personally, but AmberleaDavis has posted before and after pictures - but her pictures may have been a third "cleaning" ink, which is why I recommended searching before buying.

 

I think that the most likely cause of the cracking is due to the insertion of the nib and feed, I cannot imagine anyone being capable of putting so much pressure on the nib that it causes plastic to crack can you, really?

 

I'm strictly thinking of directional forces:

1) Removing / inserting the nib and feed when done correctly (straight out, with no lateral force (no "rocking")) would only stress the plastic by causing expansion-style pressure pushing out against the section all around.  But it's designed to have those things inside, so that pressure alone, even repeatedly (within reason, of course), seems unlikely to cause cracking.

 

2) Applying any pressure to the nib while writing applies lateral force against a specific portion of the section - the only relief from that pressure is cracking.

 

Personally, I don't think either of these is likely - I just think #2 is at least as likely as #1 to cause problems.  And yes, ideally, one is applying almost no pressure at all on the nib when writing.  I wasn't suggesting either of these were or weren't the cause so much as exploring the comparative forces involved in each.

 

Speaking with my brother when this happened to my Ecos, he said it was a known manufacturing problem in all plastics dealing with the cooling process (if I recall correctly - but definitely a discrete portion of the process) and was probably caused by them not wanting to slow the process sufficient to reduce the risk - in other words, they chose a middle ground between speed and quality, called it good enough, and accepted that some barrels will crack and that it was cheaper to replace these than to alter the manufacturing process.  Since he knows a lot more about these things than I do, and since others have posted information here about how to see the internal stresses happening in plastic that's just sitting there doing nothing (using a polarizing filter, as I recall), I tend to think this is the real cause, and those whose barrels crack just got unlucky.

 

Post #63, by "Drone" posted 13 November 2016 - 20:53 on this page: http://www.fountainp...en-magic/page-4



#15 Parkette

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 18:41

Obviously the pens are not going to crack without some force being applied and that force is most likely to be from the user inserting the nib and feed into the pen section and twisting the assembly in order to produce a tighter fit.

 

The Twsbi instructions are silent in terms of whether the feed should be twisted or pulled straight out and back in as you describe. I think that it would be natural for persons inserting the feed to turn the nib and feed until it feels as if it is seated correctly.

 

I havent seen anything in this thread to make me want to correct the advice to leave the nib and feed as set by the factory. 


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#16 LizEF

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 18:50

Obviously the pens are not going to crack without some force being applied...

 

Except that the force can be applied from internal stresses left behind inside the plastic by the manufacturing process (it doesn't have to be caused by the user).

 

I havent seen anything in this thread to make me want to correct the advice to leave the nib and feed as set by the factory. 

 

I agree - no point doing it unless there's some difficult cleaning to be done, and that should be avoided through good routine maintenance.



#17 Nibbler

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Posted 21 February 2018 - 19:46

Right, well... 

 

Firstly thank you everyone for your responses. I appreciate the time and attention whatever side of the argument you might fall on. 

 

Secondly, angst? No, none here, just polite, well argued differences. 

 

Thirdly, with regard to this pen - whilst I am a serial flusher, I don't pull the nib quite every time, but, it does seem to me that if you give people a spanner and a clear pen (and they own lots of ink) then what do you expect? However, I'm a very careful nib handler, I'm used to disassembling pens old and new. The Eco comes apart very easily so doesn't involve anything like the stress you need to get a P51 apart for instance. I don't think it's possible to push the nib/feed in too hard as the end of the feed hits a ridge or something inside. The setting of the nib is really very easy and the pen is well designed/engineered to come apart/be put back together and (with the spanner) is obviously part of the appeal IMHO. 

 

Fourthly, Doyou is a vastly underrated ink in my opinion. It's a lovely lubricated smooth ink to use and has a gentle silver sheen. I use it instead of black often and yes, it does really seem to clean pens. I have experienced staining (from Oxblood) in my Prera demonstrator, which disappeared after a tank of Doyou. Definitely worth a try. 

 

Lastly, thank you for the contact details for TWSBI, I will email the photo and see what they say. They are indeed an excellent company, so hopefully... I'll let you know how I get on. 


Edited by Nibbler, 21 February 2018 - 19:47.


#18 Drubbing

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 00:23

 

 

He must be new.

 

:unsure:

 

 

Obviously the pens are not going to crack without some force being applied and that force is most likely to be from the user inserting the nib and feed into the pen section and twisting the assembly in order to produce a tighter fit.

 

The Twsbi instructions are silent in terms of whether the feed should be twisted or pulled straight out and back in as you describe. I think that it would be natural for persons inserting the feed to turn the nib and feed until it feels as if it is seated correctly.

 

I havent seen anything in this thread to make me want to correct the advice to leave the nib and feed as set by the factory. 

 

I've seen exactly the same obsession and polarising opinions in almost every forum I've taken an interest in.

 

Whether it's pen nerds of guitar geeks, the same human instincts come to the fore, where some people force their obsessive opinions on others because they believe them to be facts. I join forums to get general information, and filter out the obsessive and geeky spectrum. For me, this is the sort of thread falls into the latter.

 

As with anything, a modicum of common sense is all you need to look after your stuff. Obsessing over 100% cleanliness, or that you simply shouldn't touch anything ever - even if YT is full of tutorials on how, and the manufacturers make a product you can swap parts on - are both unnecessary obsession.

 

I'll buy myself a different size nib and change it myself, and let others worry about the 'danger' of doing so.



#19 migo984

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 00:45

I've seen exactly the same obsession and polarising opinions in almost every forum I've taken an interest in.
 
Whether it's pen nerds of guitar geeks, the same human instincts come to the fore, where some people force their obsessive opinions on others because they believe them to be facts. I join forums to get general information, and filter out the obsessive and geeky spectrum. For me, this is the sort of thread falls into the latter.
 
As with anything, a modicum of common sense is all you need to look after your stuff. Obsessing over 100% cleanliness, or that you simply shouldn't touch anything ever - even if YT is full of tutorials on how, and the manufacturers make a product you can swap parts on - are both unnecessary obsession.
 
I'll buy myself a different size nib and change it myself, and let others worry about the 'danger' of doing so.


If you include me in your general condemnation then I think you misunderstood my post. I referred to unnecessary disassembling every time for *cleaning purposes*. I didn’t mention not swapping nibs.

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#20 Parkette

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 00:49

Good Grief.

 

Nobody is going to worry over what you do.

 

The OP asked if if the cracking in the nib section could be caused by the removal of the nib/section. Three people gave their opinion that the removal of the nib and feed was a possible cause and advised that it wasnt neccessary to remove this feed as part of the cleaning process. When I have inserted the feed into the pen I have noted that it was neccessary to turn the feed to seat the assembly properly.

 

There is no obsession involved, no geekyness.

 

The point that I was endeavouring to make was just becuase you can take a pen apart does not mean that you should.


Mennonite





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