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Heat And Celluloid Question


hermesrouge
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The only thing I would do differently is to use section pliers made out of slip joint pliers with the teeth ground off and fuel line hose to cover the jaws. I prefer to be at a 90 degree angle to the pen VS what you have with the spark plug boot pullers. The plastic coating on the jaws tears, and using Plastic Dip to recoat them doesn't work very well. The plastic dip is slippery and doesn't grip as well compared to the original coating.

 

Yep, and those are cheaper than the spark plug boot pullers. The only thing is you need a grinding wheel. I disagree with one point. I find the surface of the plastic hose on the pliers is slipperier than my pullers. And the wear aspect affects a pro more than a hobbiest.

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Yep, and those are cheaper than the spark plug boot pullers. The only thing is you need a grinding wheel. I disagree with one point. I find the surface of the plastic hose on the pliers is slipperier than my pullers. And the wear aspect affects a pro more than a hobbiest.

 

 

Plastic hose is slippery, but the fuel line hose that I use is a synthetic rubber, not plastic. I buy it at an auto parts store.

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This should be pinned.

 

Most of my early mistakes came from a lack patience, wanting instant results.

I still make mistakes, now, of course - but fewer.

Walking away from a pen sometimes, is the best advice I was ever given.

 

Thanks, Ron.

+1

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There are already to many pinned posts. When you work mostly on a phone...Not saying this isn't important, just there must be better ways to bring it up when needed.

Now if there were a way to block or ignore pinned posts...like they go in the dead white space on the right where the ads are.

San Francisco International Pen Show - The next great pen show is on schedule for August 27-28-29, 2021. If we all do what we need to do...you can Book your travel and tables and make SF 2021 the Return. 
 

 My PM box is usually full. Just email me: my last name at the google mail address.

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There are already to many pinned posts. When you work mostly on a phone...Not saying this isn't important, just there must be better ways to bring it up when needed.

Now if there were a way to block or ignore pinned posts...like they go in the dead white space on the right where the ads are.

 

Fair enough. I use the phrase to express its importance, rather than asking to have it literally pinned, to the head of the forum. But, I realise it looks like a plea, I may have to start using emoticons.

Agree re. too many pinned posts, in general - some sub-forums more than others.

 

Thanks

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I will add that there is the occasional pen that will break no matter how careful you are just because the material is old and brittle, or there is some hidden flaw. As Frank Dubield once said, "If you work on old pens, you're going to break pens." But there are ways to minimize the risks and maximize your chances of success.

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I will add that there is the occasional pen that will break no matter how careful you are just because the material is old and brittle, or there is some hidden flaw. As Frank Dubield once said, "If you work on old pens, you're going to break pens." But there are ways to minimize the risks and maximize your chances of success.

I remember hearing Brian Anderson tell a story similar to this. Back when he was first getting into the repair game, someone (a respected repairman, I forget who) came to stay with him for a few days to teach him the finer points of the trade. The first thing that this guy told Brian to do was to show him how he fixes a Vac.

 

"No problem, I've done this plenty of times" he thinks as he picks up a Vac Junior. Then, as he removes the filler, the barrel breaks into pieces.

 

He said that in hindsight, there was probably a crack he missed. In the moment, it was damn humbling.

 

That story made me start checking every inch of every pen I work on with a loupe, so I miss a minimal number of cracks.

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Now I need to call Brian...

San Francisco International Pen Show - The next great pen show is on schedule for August 27-28-29, 2021. If we all do what we need to do...you can Book your travel and tables and make SF 2021 the Return. 
 

 My PM box is usually full. Just email me: my last name at the google mail address.

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In general pens, especially vintage pens, shouldn't be glued. Only shellac or a rosin based thread sealant should have been used on a section (thread sealant only on threaded sections, and most often on pens that hold the ink directly in the barrel). Parker used a "white glue" that releases at reasonable temperatures. If someone did use a glue, all bets are off. But I don't encounter it all that often.

 

Note Ron's use of shouldn't. I have a half dozen well below third tier pens acquired in those infamous eBay "lots" when I was first learning to repair pens with glued (or epoxied) sections. They have defied all attempts to separate section from barrel.

Heat? Check.

More heat? Check.

Still more heat? Check

Blow torch? Not yet.

Soaking? Check

Ultrasonic bath? Check

Colorful language including threats? Double Check.

On several the glue oozed out of the joint and dried so I know it is there. Another FPN member suggested wicking ethanol into the joint to dissolve the glue and that will be next. Some of these are very pretty plastic and are worth a resac but only if I can open them up.

 

Ron's comment on patience has helped me a lot with these pens. When I start to run out of what little patience I have I pause to look at the Conklin Halloween Endura Ron repaired for me several years ago. He spent a long time on that pen (cracked celluloid repairs) and it shows. Maybe I will have another go at one of them tomorrow.

Dave Campbell
Retired Science Teacher and Active Pen Addict
Every day is a chance to reduce my level of ignorance.

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Note Ron's use of shouldn't. I have a half dozen well below third tier pens acquired in those infamous eBay "lots" when I was first learning to repair pens with glued (or epoxied) sections. They have defied all attempts to separate section from barrel.

Heat? Check.

More heat? Check.

Still more heat? Check

Blow torch? Not yet.

Soaking? Check

Ultrasonic bath? Check

Colorful language including threats? Double Check.

On several the glue oozed out of the joint and dried so I know it is there. Another FPN member suggested wicking ethanol into the joint to dissolve the glue and that will be next. Some of these are very pretty plastic and are worth a resac but only if I can open them up.

 

Ron's comment on patience has helped me a lot with these pens. When I start to run out of what little patience I have I pause to look at the Conklin Halloween Endura Ron repaired for me several years ago. He spent a long time on that pen (cracked celluloid repairs) and it shows. Maybe I will have another go at one of them tomorrow.

Give Pen Potion #7 (I think #7 - google it and a few Pen Potions will come up) a shot. It's a pen-safe penetrant that might help with this.

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One technique that's helpful in setting up a variable temperature heat gun for pen work is to use a cook's "instant" thermometer to check the temperature at various distances from the heat source. The heat gun, from Sears for example, has a thermostat. It varies the temp, but NOT ACCURATELY. Yet it's quite important in for some kinds of pens to distinguish between 140 F and 160 F. If you use a cook's thermometer you will eventually learn at what distance from the heat source to hold your pen's section when heating it.

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A heat gun is step #2 for me. I have a small DeLonghi convection oven that has a "Keep Warm" setting which is 140 degrees F, a nice temperature to warm things up for the first try. Because it's a fan assisted setting, the temperature is more uniform and stable than a static-condition kitchen warming drawer and it does a good job on most shellacked sections.

 

Another nice thing about the oven is that the lowest "Bake" setting is 250 degrees F, which is perfect for making a batch of castor/rosin sealant.

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A heat gun is step #2 for me. I have a small DeLonghi convection oven that has a "Keep Warm" setting which is 140 degrees F, a nice temperature to warm things up for the first try. Because it's a fan assisted setting, the temperature is more uniform and stable than a static-condition kitchen warming drawer and it does a good job on most shellacked sections.

 

Another nice thing about the oven is that the lowest "Bake" setting is 250 degrees F, which is perfect for making a batch of castor/rosin sealant.

 

But you're warming the whole silly pen, which isn't always good for the pen, nor safe. The less you heat the rest of the pen, the better.

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I managed to burn up a Skyline section with the exact same heat gun above - not entirely sure what it was made of but it literally went up like cannon fuse.

 

I avoid using the heat gun as much as I can, indeed some plastic materials actually shrink. I've purchased part pens where this has happened like Tintenkuli sections that have shrunk around the nib unit and an Onoto minor where the barrel had shrunk badly round the section. So sometimes when you apply heat you may be doing the reverse of what you wanted the heat gun to achieve.

 

Hard rubber is one of the few materials that responds well though I prefer to use a mug of boiled water to set feeds against nibs as I can control the heat a lot better.

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I managed to burn up a Skyline section with the exact same heat gun above - not entirely sure what it was made of but it literally went up like cannon fuse.

 

I avoid using the heat gun as much as I can, indeed some plastic materials actually shrink. I've purchased part pens where this has happened like Tintenkuli sections that have shrunk around the nib unit and an Onoto minor where the barrel had shrunk badly round the section. So sometimes when you apply heat you may be doing the reverse of what you wanted the heat gun to achieve.

 

Hard rubber is one of the few materials that responds well though I prefer to use a mug of boiled water to set feeds against nibs as I can control the heat a lot better.

 

Just curious--do you know at what temperature it burned?

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I managed to burn up a Skyline section with the exact same heat gun above - not entirely sure what it was made of but it literally went up like cannon fuse.

 

 

In which case you were much too close (so it heated too quickly), and/or got the material much too hot. Read my article on "Seeing With Your Fingers," if you haven't already.

 

Boiling water or steam can cloud celluloid, and you'll never get it out again. Dry heat is what you need, but you do need to go at it gently without an aggressive approach. Slow = better. As I've said many times, we will get into trouble when we want a pen to come apart NOW! You have to go slowly, gently and give it time.

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In which case you were much too close (so it heated too quickly), and/or got the material much too hot. Read my article on "Seeing With Your Fingers," if you haven't already.

 

Boiling water or steam can cloud celluloid, and you'll never get it out again. Dry heat is what you need, but you do need to go at it gently without an aggressive approach. Slow = better. As I've said many times, we will get into trouble when we want a pen to come apart NOW! You have to go slowly, gently and give it time.

 

Do you use an alcohol lamp for heat setting feeds, then?

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Do you use an alcohol lamp for heat setting feeds, then?

 

NO. Never. I never use open flame, ever. It is a very good way to turn a celluloid pen into a pen flambe'. Ask me how I know! Dry heat from a heat gun only. I know it was suggested by some of the repair manuals, and in Da Book, but they didn't have the heat guns that we have today, which are much safer.

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NO. Never. I never use open flame, ever. It is a very good way to turn a celluloid pen into a pen flambe'. Ask me how I know! Dry heat from a heat gun only. I know it was suggested by some of the repair manuals, and in Da Book, but they didn't have the heat guns that we have today, which are much safer.

 

I never use one - but I figured that given your skill, you might be able to handle it safely. I've never used a heat gun for heat setting simply because it heats up so much of the pen, as opposed to just the feed with water at just below the boiling point (to avoid steam).

 

But hey, I'll trust your word that a heat gun is the right tool for at job.

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I never use one - but I figured that given your skill, you might be able to handle it safely. I've never used a heat gun for heat setting simply because it heats up so much of the pen, as opposed to just the feed with water at just below the boiling point (to avoid steam).

 

But hey, I'll trust your word that a heat gun is the right tool for at job.

Some heat guns have a kind of funnel-like thing you can put over the blower to concentrate the hot air to a circle roughly the diam. of a pencil.

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