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Has Anyone Heard Of Henry Simpole 2016


RMN

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As well as being fairly busy with customers last Saturday, there were the usual repairs that were dropped off to my booth.

This week most of them were pretty straightforward, re-sacking, and general cleaning etc: but one of them was an 18ct gold overlaid Mont Blanc 146 fountain pen, [Hall-marked as being Aspreys].

I felt rather sorry for the pen's owner, as he told me that two different sources had recommended me to see if I could help him out with the repair! I suspect that he was concerned about what Mont Blanc would charge him to sort it out!

I guessed what was the matter with the pen, [it is the usual thing with MB pens, the spiral rod which pushes and pulls the piston had broken] it would appear that that is the weakest part of the pen. I did explain that I would only be able to do the repair if I had the correct part, and that there might be a problem getting the mechanism out of the back end of the pen. Anyway, he was pleased to leave it with me and see what I could do.

It turned out to be quite difficult to get the mechanism out, to the extent that I had to 'alter' the shape of the tool that I use for this job, [i was very concerned about damaging the 'soft' gold overlay metal, but in the end I succeeded, and now it works beautifully.

Whenever I sell this make of pen to a customer, I always warn them that there is a big difference between when we used to use fountain pens everyday at school, [this probably only applies to people of a certain age, like me!] when you would use the pen several times a day, and frequently had to fill the pen from time to time. Nowadays, for those of us who still use a fountain pen, very often we just use it to write a personal letter, or a birthday card, and when that has been done, we put the cap on the pen, and put it in the desk draw, and that is where it stays until the next time, which maybe weeks or even months hence, during which time, the ink dries, and 'sticks' the piston in the barrel of the pen!

There is only one way that this problem can be avoided, and this means that the ink should be put back in the ink bottle, and give the pen a good flush with 'cold' water [never use hot water!], dry the nib with a tissue, put the cap on the pen, and 'then' put it back in the desk draw!

Let this be a warning to us all! [Particularly modern Mont Blanc users!]

Truffle Finder. :) :D :excl:

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Not a great deal to report from yesterday's trip up to Portobello market.

A gentleman who came last Saturday, and had tried an Oversized Black Parker Vacumatic, came back yesterday having decided that he wanted to buy it, so that turned out to be the 'kick-start' for the day's business.

Two different people came to collect their pens which I had repaired for them, so that kept me fairly busy during the course of the day.

Sadly I wasn't offered any vintage fountain pens to buy, so this weekend I will have to content myself with dealing with the repairs that have come in by post.

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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It never ceases to amaze me how people seem to be interested enough to keep looking at this thread, even though nothing much has been added to it's content during the course of the last week!

Just like last week, I had no idea if anyone was planning to come to see me at my booth at Portobello Market, but when I first arrived, there was a note [that had presumably been left there last week after I had departed!], saying that:- "I look for you 10 times!" and then a telephone number for me to ring! [i've just tried the number, and one of the digits is difficult to 'decipher', and having tried three possible numbers, all I got was number unattainable!] Hey Hoo! All the fun of the fair I suppose!

Anyway, once I had unpacked my things, and been to the fruit and veg: market, I found that I had a fairly constant stream of people who wanted to look at [and in some cases try fountain pens]. Some were 'users', and some were collectors, but it certainly kept me busy for virtually the whole day!

Very satisfying!

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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A couple of weeks ago, my spectacles broke, which was rather inconvenient, as I had not got a spare pair to use until I could replace them, so, I was resigned to digging up a very old pair, [that were probably prescribed for me at least 3 years ago!]

As I am becoming increasingly aware of my age [65 years old, 66 this year!] I was quite surprised when I tried the old glasses on, just how different the old ones were, in comparison to my previous ones, particularly when I am reading, or doing close work!

Ever since I have been working on my overlay pens, I have always used fairly strong magnification pharmacy-bought glasses, [with an additional 'clip-on' set of lenses, which I bought years ago at an American Pen Show!] which tend to make me look like a 'mad scientist' from a spooky film from the 1930's!

I went for an eye-test on Tuesday, and I have ordered two pairs, but unfortunately I will not get them for three weeks, but I am looking forward to getting them.

Truffle Finder. [AKA the mad scientist!] :) :D :yikes:

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I feel your pain. I have to have a spare pair because I cannot drive without them, and holding a vocational licence, well life would be tricky. That said, my "spare" pair is the previous presciption, and the pair I wear around horses. But I've realised that I made a mistake when I got my current ones because the frames are a bit too big to wear under a riding hat - so this time around it will cost me two pairs ... frantically saving pennies now.

 

But why is that any frames that are small enough have flipping great wide arms that restrict peripheral vision? I can't have frames like this for either driving or riding.

 

Rant over, and back to our usual reading about pens. Off to fill that CS100 again as I've emptied it already today (and yes, I did fill it last night :) )

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I have just popped on here, to see if anything has happened overnight!

To my surprise there were 7 people also looking at this thread! More people than I would have thought, at 6.30am on a Saturday morning!

I checked at the local tube station yesterday, and there are no 'planned engineering works' happening on the Central Line today, the weather is cool, but not rainy, so today's excursion to Portobello looks promising!

As is quite usual, I haven't had any inquiries from anyone who might be coming to see me today, except for one gentleman who will probably be coming to collect a couple of pens which he wanted servicing, other than that, it is all in the lap of the gods!

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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Maybe we should put the gods on a diet so their lap is bigger? :wacko:

 

That's my philosophy done for the day! :D

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Thanks Ghost Plane, for your wise words regarding the 'lap of the Gods', I've often used that expression, but I honestly have never though of the 'lap' as actually being the 'lap of the Gods' [as in where the dog might be put, while relaxing in celestial heaven!]

I'd always thought that it referred to some sort of mental 'waiting room', until the gods had time to do something about it!

But on reflection, maybe I've been taking 'lateral thinking' to an extreme level!!!

You live and learn!

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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When I woke up this morning, and came downstairs, I sat at my computer, and started it up! Only to be greeted by a message sent to my Web-site, by someone who was trying [in rather poorly written English, I might add!] to tell me that for the small sum of 299 Dollars, I could have my Web-site 're-done'!

Not only was I annoyed by this intrusion on my privacy, but also [maybe I woke up 'in a grumpy mood'!] I felt that it was a slur on the quality of my Web-site, and indirectly a bit of an insult to my very good friend who made the Web-site in the first place!

Anyway, I have reported the message as 'Spam', so presumably 'the boys downtown' will be paying a visit later today!

Truffle Finder. :huh:

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....

Anyway, I have reported the message as 'Spam', so presumably 'the boys downtown' will be paying a visit later today!

Truffle Finder. :huh:

If only..... -_-

God is seldom early, never late, and always on time.

~~Larry Brown

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This week, I have been quite busy, as I am working on 10 Myrtle patterned overlaid pens, and I'm pleased to say that I have nearly completed the operation. Making the overlays involves a considerable amount of work in itself, but there is also a great deal of work to be done before the overlays can be put on the base-pens.

Anyway, I'm on the 'home-straight' now so, in all probability, I will have finished them all by the end of this Bank Holiday Weekend, so I will get them all Hall-Marked at the Assay Office next week.

As is quite usual, I haven't had any indication about who may come to see me today at Portobello Road, but I will keep an open mind about it.

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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Put my name on one of those Myrtles. Which filler mechanism does she have? Have a good day!!!

God is seldom early, never late, and always on time.

~~Larry Brown

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Well 'pollandakuma', you won't need to set aside any money to come and visit my booth at Portobello Road, and browse over the pens that I have in stock! If on the other hand, you fall in love with something that you really can't live without, then that is a different matter!

The Myrtle pens in silver are £850 each, BTW!

 

I have just returned from a small Antiques and Collectables fair at a local Church Hall, and I managed to find several things which are 'pen-connected' items, [mainly old ink bottles] and one French made fountain pen, which I will work on fairly shortly.

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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Before I left my booth at Portobello last Saturday, I packed everything in my 'wheeler-case' and set off, to return home. Well, that was the idea, but in fact I hadn't packed 'everything'! I had missed a gold overlaid pen, which had been left with me to be repaired!

As usual, I had told the customer that if I didn't phone him, the pen would be ready for him to collect on Saturday!

[The unfortunate thing there, is that his name, address and telephone number is on a piece of paper, in the envelope with the pen!]

So, I will be taking a trip up to Notting Hill Gate today, to the arcade [which they only open on Friday afternoons, during the rest of the week!] to pick the pen up.

I really hope that there won't be any unexpected problems when it comes to repairing the pen, but if there is, I will be able to warn the gentleman that it will 'not' be ready for collection, tomorrow!

In a way, it is quite fortunate, that I will be going up to Portobello today, because the Ink bottles, and other quite heavy items that I bought at the Antiques Fair last Monday can be taken to my booth today!

Truffle Finder. :) :D

Edited by Truffle Finder
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Today's trip up to Portobello was quite busy, mainly because a young collector friend of mine came to see me, [along with his father, who was over here from South Africa, to visit]. It has been a few years since I had seen the father, so, seeing as I had to go up to my booth yesterday I had taken both my 'pension scheme' folders of vintage pens to show him.

To say that he was 'in awe' of the pens that he was able to feast his eyes on, would be an understatement, but while they were busy looking and discussing them, another gentleman turned up to look at my more usual pen stock, but his eyes were drawn towards the two folders, and he was listening to the two 'more seasoned' collector's comments about some of my prized vintage pens! I do get an enormous amount of pleasure from showing my personal collection of vintage pens to people who realise just how rare they are, or how unusual it is to see some pens in such 'near perfect' condition.

As is quite usual on most Saturdays, a few pen repairs were brought in and dropped off for my attentions this coming few days, and hopefully, I will have done them by next Saturday.

Tomorrow, I will be going to my old school, to attend a re-union of students who were there between 1961-1971. I am really looking forward to going there, but a lot will depend on whether I recognise anyone, [or hopefully someone who might recognises me]!

We shall see!

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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I've just got myself another Pullman Pen [from the 1930's, made by a small private company by the name of Procter and Brenner]!

This will be the third one in my collection, and I am in the process of restoring it [hopefully] back to it's original state, but as is quite 'the norm' for this peculiar type of fountain pen, there are several cracks in the outer Casein of the cap of the pen. Casein is a natural product, made from the whey of milk, [this is what is left after the curds have been separated off to make cheese], and it was discovered by an Austrian in the early 1920's that it could be made into a quite strong 'plastic-like' product, which 'behaved' very favourably in a lathe, and was used in pen manufacture by such companies as Conway Stewart for example. The big drawback with casein, is that being a natural product, it is water-soluble, and therefore expands and contracts, even by the humidity of the surrounding air!

The cap of the Pullman Pen, is made of steel, and it is sheathed with a very thin 'coating' of casein, and when the pen has experienced a centrally heated atmosphere at some time in it's life, it contracted and split because it was tight-fitted on the steel tube of the cap!

So, now I am in the throws of trying to match up the colours of the cracked parts of the pen, then I will be filling them with clear cellulose, and then 'cutting back', and polishing the cap.

Sadly my impatience got the better of me, and there are no 'before' photographs, but no doubt when I have finished all the restoration, Neal will be able to show the pen off on this thread soon!

Truffle Finder. :) :D

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We await the evidence of your wizardry with bated breath! ;)

God is seldom early, never late, and always on time.

~~Larry Brown

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I'm afraid I don't have a great deal to report regarding yesterday's trip up to Portobello!

There were quite a few people who looked at my overlaid pens during the course of the day, and I was offered quite a few vintage fountain pens [by some general Antique Dealers] but I didn't buy any of them, either because they were not the sort of pens that I need, or because the condition was not good on some of them.

However, later on in the day, a regular dealer who keeps pens for me, came up with a 'mint' Mont Blanc 146, and I bought that one, so all was not 'lost' during the course of the day!

Two lots of pen repairs customers came to collect their restored pens, and a couple of pens were dropped off, to be repaired, which is quite fortunate, [at least to cover the basic expenses!]

Hopefully next week will be perhaps a little better!

Truffle Finder. :rolleyes: :D :lol:

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