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Supply Question

von Fraker

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I have been collecting pens for about 2 years now and have picked up over 150 of them. Some from eBay and this Network but most I have found "in the wild". Some really good ones too (Parker Vac. Oversize Set, Sheaffer Oversize Ballance, 2 Parker Lucky Curves from the 20s, a Waterman's from the late 1890s, etc...) I have have come to realize now that I have more that need serviced than I do that are in working order. There are a few that I think I am going to tackle on my own such as my Esterbrook Js and some of the other Lever Fillers. After watching a few videos on You Tube, I may try to service one of the the Sheaffer Snorkels I picked up yesterday at an estate sale (2 for 25.00 and one works flawlessly). I will leave the corked piston fillers, Sheaffer Vac, and Parker vacs. to the guys like Danny Fudge or Ron Zorn.


My question today is can some of the supplies such as silicone grease, shellac, and talc be picked up locally?


I ask because I work for NAPA Auto Parts and we sell about 10 different brands of silicone grease. Many of them are made to use on rubber such as on air filter seals, rubber gaskets and o-rings. (This link shows 5 pages of Silicone grease http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/Result.aspx?Ntt%3dsilicone%2bgrease%26Ntk%3dKeyword%26Nty%3d1%26Dn%3d0%26D%3dsilicone%2bgrease%26Dk%3d1%26Dp%3d3%26N%3d0 ).


I have seen where some guys suggest using graphite powder in place of Talc. We carry this natural graphite powder http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/CatalogItemDetail.aspx/Lubricant-Graphite-Based-SLIP-Plate-SEED-Slik-Superior-Graphite-Company/_/R-BK_30734_0006382728 .


I have also seen where some use regular Zinsser bulls-eye wood shellac that you can pick up at most hardware retailers. Like here: http://www.lowes.com/pd_208964-90-704H_0__


I am not trying the "cheap route" my main concern is the integrity of the pen but if these products can be used, I could easliy have more than enough to last many years to come.


I know the supplies at dealers are not expensive, I just like going out and picking stuff up vs waiting on it to come through the mail/UPS (silly I know). I have to order sacs and snorkel kits anyway so I don't mind just getting it all from one place. I have just always been curious when I walk through the Distribution Center if some of this could work for pens.


Go easy on me, remember ...I am new to this :)


Thank you,





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I buy my section pliers from NAPA... Spark plug pliers (NAPA or KD brand), and the best thing about them is the lifetime warranty, which I have already used due to the rubber coating splitting and coming off after heavy use...


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I'll also add, that if you have a local dive shop, check there for 100% silicone grease. It is regularly used to keep rubber gaskets sealing well at depth for SCUBA divers.


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In general, it's better to shop local when you can. As for doing so rather than ordering from a pen place, it's should be a cost/quality/convenience choice - imho. The only thing to keep in mind is some places like NAPA may have the silicone in a 2 oz. container. Depending on what you want to do with it, 2 oz. may last you five lifetimes of a thin coat on an "O" ring.


I recently bought a new TWSBI 580. It comes with a small container of silicone. I figure I now have enough for at least 5 years at my current rate of use.


It's really up to you!

“Don't put off till tomorrow what you can do today, because if you do it today and like it, you can do again tomorrow!”

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