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Sheaffer Legacy 2...is This Normal?



lyonlover

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Hello everyone,

 

About a month ago, I bought a Sheaffer Snorkel Valiant and promptly returned it. That was the first fountain pen I'd ever bought for myself. It wasn't a very good experience (and I'm not whining about it either) and I was pretty disappointed.

 

Then, fast-forward to three hours ago, the mailman rings my doorbell, I sign the receipt paper, and I whip out a box knife to unpackage my newest purchase. I'd bought it from a reputable fountain pen dealer in Wisconsin as a New Old Stock pen, and made sure that I had good communication with the seller. I play with the snazzy touchdown mechanism with water for five minutes, then fill it with Waterman Mysterious Blue...

 

Without delay, the pen lays ink, but it is quite dry. The line is a faint shade of blue, and has gotten darker over the past two hours, but is also quite scratchy. I read that Waterman inks are supposed to be lubricating, but this pen is nowhere as smooth or as wet as my friend's $15 Pilot Metropolitan using the same ink. There doesn't look to be anything wrong with the pen, visibly I mean.

 

Is this normal for a brand-new fountain pen to be scratchy and dry? I've only tested various fountain pens in stores and used vintage pens.

 

Please help. I like this pen a lot and I hope to be able to use it for at least decades. By the way, it's a fine nib pen.

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What I find frequently is that after the ink has been in the pen for 24 to 48 hours, the ink flows better through the feed, creating a smoother experience without requiring you to do anything except wait. On plastic feeds -- and I don't know if this pen has one -- the issue has something to do with a corona surface treatment of the feed. It could also be tine alignment, but you've already checked all that. Another option is trying a different ink, such as a lubricious ink like Aurora.

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It's gonna take a while for all the water to become ink. Patience is your friend.

 

But if it continues, try a few tests.

 

First, switch to a Sheaffer cartridge and see if it is the same.

 

Next try writing a few circles, clockwise and counter clockwise and see if the pen behaves differently based on position in the arc and direction of movement.

 

Repeat the test with Tic-Tac-Toe boxes again in both up and down strokes and right to left strokes.

 

Repeat with "X"s, again, varying the direction of the strokes. Post the results.

 

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What I find frequently is that after the ink has been in the pen for 24 to 48 hours, the ink flows better through the feed, creating a smoother experience without requiring you to do anything except wait. On plastic feeds -- and I don't know if this pen has one -- the issue has something to do with a corona surface treatment of the feed. It could also be tine alignment, but you've already checked all that. Another option is trying a different ink, such as a lubricious ink like Aurora.

Thanks bobjpage! I've never heard about the corona surface treatment.

 

Ink has been in the pen for 24 hours and the pen still writes dry, though.

Edited by lyonlover
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It's gonna take a while for all the water to become ink. Patience is your friend.

 

But if it continues, try a few tests.

 

First, switch to a Sheaffer cartridge and see if it is the same.

 

Next try writing a few circles, clockwise and counter clockwise and see if the pen behaves differently based on position in the arc and direction of movement.

 

Repeat the test with Tic-Tac-Toe boxes again in both up and down strokes and right to left strokes.

 

Repeat with "X"s, again, varying the direction of the strokes. Post the results.

 

The pen is smooth-ish on a downstroke, but everything else is rough. How do I post images on here? I can't find an option to upload my own photos.

 

Thanks Jar!

Edited by lyonlover
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Yeah, the pen is equally rough on right and left strokes. I think this means the tines aren't misaligned. I found out how to upload the pictures too, and included some pictures of the nib. There's a decent amount of tipping, but not as much as I thought would be on a brand-new pen.

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post-128521-0-61363000-1459476768_thumb.jpg

post-128521-0-31949100-1459476777_thumb.jpg

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Okay, hard to see from the pictures but it looks like the tines are too close together at the tips. That leaves it way dry and scratchy. I'm not sure how best to open it slightly when it comes to inlaid nibs but I bet it can be solved. First contact the person you bought the pen from and send them copies of the pictures. Ask them to fix it for you.

 

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Okay, hard to see from the pictures but it looks like the tines are too close together at the tips. That leaves it way dry and scratchy. I'm not sure how best to open it slightly when it comes to inlaid nibs but I bet it can be solved. First contact the person you bought the pen from and send them copies of the pictures. Ask them to fix it for you.

I actually put a single folded piece of aluminum foil (which should be less than 0.01 inches thick total) and left it in there for about ten minutes and it feels a lot smoother now. Not perfect, but a lot better. Should I still contact the seller?

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Even Sheaffer had the occasional pen where they didn't quite get things right and the nib needs to be adjusted and/or smoothed. I have and have had several Legacies, and think that they're great pens.

 

If you have a problem with a pen, you should always contact the seller. A reputable seller is interested in making you happy (that's why they're reputable), and can adjust the pen for you. You ought to give them a chance...

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3rdlakerobert

I actually put a single folded piece of aluminum foil (which should be less than 0.01 inches thick total) and left it in there for about ten minutes and it feels a lot smoother now. Not perfect, but a lot better. Should I still contact the seller?

 

Yeah, I would think flossing the nib would help a lot. Maybe something's between the tines impeding flow. Maybe they just need to be spread a little. Try .02 to .04 brass shim stock. Some hardware stores have a supply, maybe also at the big home center stores too.

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Note that IMO (and according to my warranty) if you go fiddling with a nib and screw it up in the process, the warranty is void. If its a new pen, unless you know what you are doing, you should allow the vendor to handle it. Screw it up trying to do it yourself, and it's now your problem!

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Even Sheaffer had the occasional pen where they didn't quite get things right and the nib needs to be adjusted and/or smoothed. I have and have had several Legacies, and think that they're great pens.

 

If you have a problem with a pen, you should always contact the seller. A reputable seller is interested in making you happy (that's why they're reputable), and can adjust the pen for you. You ought to give them a chance...

 

Sorry for the late reply. I was away for a few days.

 

So I did contact the seller, and they said that since my pen was a "consignment pen" (and they had already let me know that before I purchased it), I should deal with this problem with Sheaffer's customer support directly. Fortunately, I have not fiddled with my pen yet (I can't help but fiddle but this time I restrained myself) and it is just like how it was when I bought it (except it is now inked). The pen has gotten slightly better but is still not as pleasant to use as my friend's Pilot Metropolitan. Also, when I press a wee bit harder for line variation, the pen is even scratchier. No matter how I rotate the pen (+-10 degrees), the pen still writes more or less the same. Thought that might be useful to know.

 

UPDATE 5:27 PM:

I just screwed off the barrel and found that there was ink all around the converter. I wiped it off when I saw it without thinking much of it, so I can't get pictures of it.

 

Should I call Sheaffer and see?

Edited by lyonlover
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Okay. full stop.

 

Do not press on inlaid nibs to get line variation, the result will more often be a damaged nib seal.

 

The ink around the converter could be the converter not full seated but more likely a damaged ink sac in the converter. Since the pen was a consignment item there is no way to really tell much about how it was treated before you got it. It's long out of warranty in any case.

 

What I suggest is the following.

 

First a patient cleaning of all of the interior parts of the pen.

 

Next, put the converter aside, it is likely toast anyway.

 

Then test the pen using Sheaffer cartridges. Check performance and for any leaks, particularly along the edges of the inlaid nib.

 

If there are not leaks at the edges of the nib have a beer and congratulations BUT don't press on the nib in the future.

 

If there are leaks at the edges of the inlaid nib it is time to turn to Captain Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure.

 

If the pen writes well using the cartridge all is good and you can replace the old converter with a press type Sheaffer converter. It will work with the touchdown mechanism.

 

If the pen is still scratchy it is time to get one of the experienced Sheaffer repair folk to step in.

 

My Website

 

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Okay. full stop.

 

Do not press on inlaid nibs to get line variation, the result will more often be a damaged nib seal.

 

The ink around the converter could be the converter not full seated but more likely a damaged ink sac in the converter. Since the pen was a consignment item there is no way to really tell much about how it was treated before you got it. It's long out of warranty in any case.

 

What I suggest is the following.

 

First a patient cleaning of all of the interior parts of the pen.

 

Next, put the converter aside, it is likely toast anyway.

 

Then test the pen using Sheaffer cartridges. Check performance and for any leaks, particularly along the edges of the inlaid nib.

 

If there are not leaks at the edges of the nib have a beer and congratulations BUT don't press on the nib in the future.

 

If there are leaks at the edges of the inlaid nib it is time to turn to Captain Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure.

 

If the pen writes well using the cartridge all is good and you can replace the old converter with a press type Sheaffer converter. It will work with the touchdown mechanism.

 

If the pen is still scratchy it is time to get one of the experienced Sheaffer repair folk to step in.

I'm cleaning up the pen right now. When I took off the converter, it looked like the leak was in the base of the pen, so it could be that the converter was not inserted properly. I'm looking for where I can get my hands on a cartridge right now.

 

I was misled by another member that this pen was "semi-flex". Now I know the pen is in reality only a springy pen and not really a flex pen. Thanks for the warning, and thank you so much for your time, Jar.

 

But I thought the pen came with a lifetime warranty? I'm sure Sheaffer's new parent company would not honor the warranty as well as Sheaffer used to, but this seems like it's a manufacturer's defect (the nib, not the converter) that could be handled by the manufacturer. Right now, Sheaffer's office is closed though. I don't know.

Edited by lyonlover
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Legacys are great pens. Hope you get this one working right!

Aw thanks. The pen is absolutely gorgeous but the problems are very saddening.

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I'm cleaning up the pen right now. When I took off the converter, it looked like the leak was in the base of the pen, so it could be that the converter was not inserted properly. I'm looking for where I can get my hands on a cartridge right now.

 

I was misled by another member that this pen was "semi-flex". Now I know the pen is in reality only a springy pen and not really a flex pen. Thanks for the warning, and thank you so much for your time, Jar.

 

But I thought the pen came with a lifetime warranty? I'm sure Sheaffer's new parent company would not honor the warranty as well as Sheaffer used to, but this seems like it's a manufacturer's defect (the nib, not the converter) that could be handled by the manufacturer. Right now, Sheaffer's office is closed though. I don't know.

Sheaffer's Lifetime warranty was for the lifetime of the first owner and I would suggest going to one of the experienced Sheaffer Repair folk rather than where ever warranty work is being done by whatever company it is today (Cross I think).

 

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If the pen is still scratchy it is time to get one of the experienced Sheaffer repair folk to step in.

 

...of which I am one. These nibs can not be taken apart - the thread bushing is epoxied in. But that does not mean that it is a total loss. There is a lot that can be fixed without taking the nib apart.

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I emailed the seller again on Sunday, but they did not respond until today. I got a response from someone else (the repair guy there) and he said that I can send it in, but I would pay for the shipping. In their words, "no cost on any repair if [we are] able to repair. Shipping to send back would not be covered on our end."

 

How does that sound?

 

By the way, I emailed Sheaffer's customer support about this too, but they have not responded yet (they never respond to emails...ever, in both my tries, but calling them works.).

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