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Cleaning Solutions In Canada


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Hello, I'd like to ask if anyone knows what the options are for pen cleaning liquids in Canada? I've seen Koh-I-Noor Rapido-Eze (2oz) at an art store here in Vancouver, and also Speedball cleaner (2oz) online at Amazon, but I'm wondering if there are any other options.


I'd rather not order from the US because of shipping costs and the possibility of customs charges. And I know I could always make my own pen flush, but I'd rather not get mixed up in chemistry, recipes and purchasing quantities of ingredients I need only a small amount of and have no other use for.

Also, I'm sure the products I've mentioned above would be sufficient for me, but would I be better off with a cleaner with some component of ammonia?

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Check this out:




Basically you make up a solution of 9 parts water and 1 part ammonia. Add a few drops of dishwashing liquid as an option. Can't get much simpler than that!

Edited by unigami

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IME, there's nothing better than Rapido-Eze.

These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value.--Thomas Paine, "The American Crisis", 1776

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Check this out:




Basically you make up a solution of 9 parts water and 1 part ammonia. Add a few drops of dishwashing liquid as an option. Can't get much simpler than that!

I'm in Canada and make my own. As above. Sometimes half n' half for a really good soak. Frankly the home made is just as good as the bottled stuff. Amonia is available at the hardware store. I use ink droppers and clean very often.

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+1 to the above post. I make my own with non sudsing ammonia, dish detergent and water. And I toss the lot into an ultrasound cleaner and voilà! Clean pens.


As a disclaimer, all of my pens are new or nearly new and I keep good cleaning habits. If I were to forget a pen somewhere for months and months, or maybe find an old pen in the wild I might need something more heavy-duty.

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My scientific method involves an Old Fashioned glass of water, and a tablespoon of plain ammonia bought at Walmart. The supermarkets up here usually only have the lemon ammonia.

"I was cut off from the world. There was no one to confuse or torment me, and I was forced to become original." - Franz Joseph Haydn 1732 - 1809
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Thanks for all the responses. In terms of my original questions I suppose I can infer that:

1. There are no other commercially available pen cleaners in Canada other than the ones I mentioned (which I'm quite used to, living here)
2. That even though I mentioned that I'd rather not have to mix up my own ammonia-based solution, that I should just do it because it's inexpensive, simple and effective (which makes sense, and I'll probably do that)
3. That if I do go for one of the products I mentioned, that Rapido-Eze is a great option

I don't think Canadian Walmart sells plain ammonia. I know the London Drugs in Vancouver sells it in 2L containers, which seems like a lot to me but I guess I could always make glass cleaner or fertilizer with it too. So I'll probably pick some up next time I'm there. I find London Drugs is surprisingly good with pure chemical solvents; I was able to find 99%
Isopropanol there when I couldn't find it anywhere else.

Again, thanks for the help.

Edited by jaysongo
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I'm from Ontario and can get plain household ammonia at Home Hardware. Is that chain in B.C. too? If not try the cleaning aisle of Lowes or Home Depot. Good luck.

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Yes, we have Home Hardware in BC. Thanks for the tip. I ended up getting the ammonia from London Drugs yesterday for $2.50 for couple liters. I will likely break out my woodworking respirator for the mixing because I read horror stories about fumes (one reason I would have preferred not to deal with the chemistry), though that might well be overkill.

Edited by jaysongo
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