Jump to content

The Fountain Pen Network uses (functional) cookies. Read the FPN Privacy Policy for more info.  To remove this message, please click here to accept the use of cookies


Registration on the Fountain Pen Network

Dearest Visitor of the little Fountain Pen Nut house on the digital prairie,

Due to the enormous influx of spammers, it is no longer possible to handle valditions in the traditional way. For registrations we therefore kindly and respectfully request you to send an email with your request to our especially created email address. This email address is register at fountainpennetwork dot com. Please include your desired user name, and after validation we will send you a return email containing the validation key, normally wiithin a week.

Thank you very much in advance!
The FPN Admin Team






Photo

How To Clean A Burnham

casein

  • Please log in to reply
14 replies to this topic

#1 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 24 December 2018 - 18:40

Earlier this year I acquired a Burnham 56, and it came with the very useful caution about not soaking it.  All or some parts of it are made of casein, which I understand is not water resistant in any way.  However, this pen needs cleaning and I'm wondering what the best process might be; I don't have an ultrasonic cleaner, so I'm looking for a simple process. 

 

The section of this Burnham can be unscrewed from its barrel.  I'm not sure if that feature would make a difference in how to clean this pen, and I am also not certain what part/s of the pen include casein.  It is lever-filled so I know it's important to also avoid getting any moisture in the lever.  Any advice would be terrific. 

 

I also want to deliver a huge 'thank-you' to everyone in FPN!  I'm not always a frequent reader but I have so enjoyed the posts and advice and the wonderful community that comes with FPN. 

 

Best holiday wishes!

Madeline

 

 


Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain


Sponsored Content

#2 northlodge

northlodge

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,373 posts
  • Location:no longer in Rutland
  • Flag:

Posted 24 December 2018 - 19:50

The casein is what the barrel and cap will be made of - "the pretty bits"

 

It is correct that these should not be exposed to water / liquid for any significant period. If you really want to clean it then I would suggest dismantling the pen (remove the section, stud, clip etc).

 

When I was in the US last I purchased some Novus plastic polish. A small quanity of this sprayed on, the immediately polished off should clean the pen sufficiently without causing damage. Gentle heat will ensure the area around the lever is dried.

 

With casein you may find the pen has already suffered from crazing. If so there is little you can do to reverse this, so best just enjoy writing with it.

 

Take a look the UK area, it has some recent pictures of Burnhams that will show not all casein pens are basket cases.  


Edited by northlodge, 24 December 2018 - 19:50.


#3 PaulS

PaulS

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,869 posts
  • Location:London, U.K.
  • Flag:

Posted 24 December 2018 - 20:10

Hi - We'd be interested to see a picture of your Burnham if possible  -  and thanks for your Seasons Good Wishes. :)


Edited by PaulS, 24 December 2018 - 20:11.


#4 mitto

mitto

    Ancient Artifact

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 11,269 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 25 December 2018 - 13:28

+1 for the picture request.

Merry Christmas to all.
Khan M. Ilyas

#5 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 27 December 2018 - 23:16

Thank you for your thoughts!  I am embarrassed to say that I just discovered a crack in the cap of my Burnham.  I suspect that this is why the ink has been drying so rapidly and possibly clogging the feed, even with daily use.  So it appears that my fountain pen's problem has grown larger than a simple cleaning will solve.  My photo capabilities are limited but I'll try posting a photo when the light improves here; we are in a very dark and rainy period right now. 

 

On an entirely different tack...  PaulS, I've been sharing your amazing quote with friends this Christmas ("People who don't make mistakes rarely make anything.")  Thank you for posting that.  It will inspire all of us to try new things!


Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain


#6 JonDavis667

JonDavis667

    Dipped Only

  • Member - Silver

  • Pip
  • 6 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 29 December 2018 - 17:14

Hello, quick question on the info above.

 

I was gifted a Burnham 48 for Christmas (my mother found it in a flea market, lovely pink/red marble with gold striations), and am looking to clean it all up. It looks in generally good condition but the sac had perished so I have a new one on order but I want to give the nib and feed a good clean to get rid of all the dried up ink.  I understand the dangers of getting casein wet (had a horrible experience with another pen I was gifted which will now never be the same again...) but will I be safe soaking the section with nib and feed once barrel and cap are safely removed?  Nib and feed are currently firmly stuck in the section and I don't want to force anything unduly.



#7 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 29 December 2018 - 19:44

I have wondered about this same question.  Are the section and feed also made of casein?


Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain


#8 peterg

peterg

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,099 posts

Posted 29 December 2018 - 20:58

I have wondered about this same question.  Are the section and feed also made of casein?

No, they are hard rubber. Quite soakable



#9 PaulS

PaulS

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,869 posts
  • Location:London, U.K.
  • Flag:

Posted 29 December 2018 - 21:30

adding to Peter's information ...................    unless it's essential, the advice here is not to remove the feed and nib from the section, but it can be useful to apply some water pressure from the rear of the section by means of a bulb  and suitable diameter tubing.     A little ammonia or detergent added to the water can sometimes speed up the cleaning process.

Perhaps surprisingly, one of the causes of pen breakage is when the section is being refitted to the barrel  -  if the hair dryer has been used to assist with separating these two, then it's advisable to do the same in reverse and re-heat the barrel to give a little expansion - helps to avoid that sudden little cracking sound. :o


Edited by PaulS, 29 December 2018 - 21:30.


#10 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 30 December 2018 - 18:59

At last today we have sunlight here so I attempted a few photos. (Apologies for the terrible dearth of photography skills!)  I suspect that the cap acquired its crack while being transported via backpack--its poor pen holder probably not enough protection for the ride :-(   It looks like a tough repair so I may look for a replacement cap instead.  Thank you, everyone, for the cleaning tips!  Encouraging to hear that the feed and section are not casein. Best wishes for year's end!

 

Attached Images

  • Burnham56.JPG
  • Burnham_nib.JPG
  • longview.JPG
  • Nib_and_section.JPG
  • cracked_cap.JPG

Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain


#11 PaulS

PaulS

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,869 posts
  • Location:London, U.K.
  • Flag:

Posted 30 December 2018 - 20:46

are you sure Madeline that this pen is made from casein?               Black pens which look like yours are mostly black hard rubber (Vulcanite) or celluloid, as far as I know.            If you rub the pen with a very mild cleaning product, do you get a celluloid smell (table tennis balls), or is there an absence of any kind of smell?                 What makes you say this is casein? :)


Edited by PaulS, 30 December 2018 - 22:00.


#12 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 30 December 2018 - 21:30

I purchased it earlier this year on e-bay, and the seller warned me that it was made of casein, suggesting that it should never encounter water (on any long-term basis).  He didn't say what parts of the pen were made of casein so I had assumed that perhaps all parts of it were casein, and I've been careful when filling it.

 

I do not detect any smell but I am unfortunately down with a cold so I may not yet be a reliable "tester."


Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain


#13 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 30 December 2018 - 21:35

....  I looked at the old listing and to be more precise, the seller wrote, "I believe that this fountain pen is made of Casein ... Always take care not to leave it sitting in water...this can badly affect this plastic and result in distortion and shrinkage."  So I imagine that there is some possibility that it's not casein.  Although many Burnhams were?

 

It has a wonderful nib and is a very smooth writer!


Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain


#14 PaulS

PaulS

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,869 posts
  • Location:London, U.K.
  • Flag:

Posted 30 December 2018 - 21:53

the advice about avoiding water with fountain pens is generally very sound, especially hot water, as this can damage some pens irreparably, particularly those made of casein, celluloid and bhr.

Celluloid should be easy to detect via the smell, bhr should be also be fairly easy in the form of a sulphurous smell when cleaned, but casein does seem not to give an easy indication, unless it's reached the point where the surface is slightly crazing.             Hopefully, others here can suggest methods of assessing for casein. :)

Yes, I believe many Burnham's were casein - but those I believe are almost always the coloured examples.

 

Nice looking pen and nib sounds a dream - but then it is a British pen B)                  Shame about the cap - hope you manage to source a replacement, as repairing such damage is not easy, and often only temporary.            Hope the cold disappears soon.


Edited by PaulS, 30 December 2018 - 21:57.


#15 madeline

madeline

    Extremely Rare

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 201 posts
  • Location:Wisconsin
  • Flag:

Posted 30 December 2018 - 22:07

Thank you, Paul!  Those ideas will certainly help me to identify the composition of some of my other pens, sans cold.

 

I also should have mentioned (in the service of accuracy) that I simply grabbed my notebook as a backdrop for the photos up above. The writing sample is not from this Burnham but from a Baoer.


Moderation in everything, including moderation.     

                                                                                     --Mark Twain






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: casein



Sponsored Content




|