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My Favorite, Most Frustrating, And Only Montblanc


CBK
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And now for a tale of frustration...

 

I had to drop my GC Miles Davis (my first and only Montblanc) off at the local boutique today for another round of service after having just picked it up from the last round yesterday. In 2 years of ownership, this is the 4th time I've had to send it in for service. This time I'm genuinely frustrated with the work quality from the Texas service center.

 

A little background...

The first time it needed service wasn't more than a week after I bought it. After inking it up I noticed ink on my fingers every time I wrote, no matter how many times I flushed it out. After convincing the boutique that there was an actual problem, and it wasn't just left over from inking it up, or excess ink in the cap they sent it away for service. I don't think they really believed there was a problem though; after a 6 week sting at the service center the pen came back with a generic note saying the feed assembly had been replaced. Unfortunately I didn't have the pen for more than a day before it started leaking again. I immediately took the pen back and off it went back to the service center. Fast forward another 4 weeks and the manager of the boutique called me up, unfortunately the pen needed to be sent back to Germany. Turns out I wasn't crazy or just being a newbie...Montblanc had identified a defect in the manufacturing process and all Miles Davis FPs needed to be remanufactured. 6 months later I finally got a brand new pen....boy did I love it, it quickly became my daily writer for note taking and meetings.

 

Fast forward a year...

After working wonderfully for about 10 months the pen started experiencing hard starts and skipping....it was maddening. I tried everything, flushing it out, soaking the nib, different paper; all to no avail. So I packed it up and took it back to the boutique. Off it went, again...after another 4 weeks it came back yesterday. The service note that came back with the pen stated, "Replaced feed, feed assembly, reservoir seals, extensively tested nib". I inked it up and it seemed to work well. Took the pen home, and was copying out some notes when the ink just petered out...no ink was flowing; that's when I took a closer look at the underside of the nib. Here are some pictures...

 

post-147575-0-69412000-1549149051_thumb.jpg

 

As you can see, the feed was installed completely off center.

 

post-147575-0-76026800-1549149060.png

 

There is also something lodged in between the nib tines which I could not get out with brass floss. I have to say...I'm really bummed, it's my favorite pen and I think it's been out for service for just as long as I've been able to use it. This time the quality control person who "extensively tested" the pen was either asleep when they tested it or they didn't actually test it like they said in their note. Don't get me wrong, I know MB will make everything right, and the folks at the boutique were extremely apologetic...it's just that each round of this takes 4 weeks minimum and I would expect a quality control issue like this time to be caught before they sent the pen back. I'm also a little worried because whatever is lodged in the nib has been there for at least a week or so and I'm wondering if that will have permanently splayed my tines.

 

Sigh....all I can say is, thank goodness for the warranty!

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If that's the only issue, the feed alignment, it's an easy fix..!

 

The thing is that with 18k nibs it's also easy to damage the nib... If you have someone who can actually work on nibs, then problem solved... If not, maybe another trip to Montblanc...?

 

Sorry, it does suck to have bought a writing instrument that doesn't do a good job at writing.

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If that's the only issue, the feed alignment, it's an easy fix..!

 

The thing is that with 18k nibs it's also easy to damage the nib... If you have someone who can actually work on nibs, then problem solved... If not, maybe another trip to Montblanc...?

 

Sorry, it does suck to have bought a writing instrument that doesn't do a good job at writing.

Thanks, I did consider realigning the feed, but since its still under warranty I bit the bullet and its on the way back. I am somewhat concerned that whatever is jammed between the tines is going to induce a permanent separation in the nib...it is fairly soft, there is no plating on this edition. I tried getting it out with a brass floss sheet but no luck...its in there tight!

Edited by CBK
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Infuriating. One might suspect that, especially given the raft of similar reports here and elsewhere, that MB doesn't really care about customer service and the "boutique" employees neither know nor have any interest in pens. It's especially annoying that you've spent so much money and received so little satisfaction from the purchase.

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Infuriating. One might suspect that, especially given the raft of similar reports here and elsewhere, that MB doesn't really care about customer service and the "boutique" employees neither know nor have any interest in pens. It's especially annoying that you've spent so much money and received so little satisfaction from the purchase.

While it does seem thats the case, judging by stories, I dont think its the case for every boutique.

I know there are some out there who do still have a passion for the pens. Its rare, definitely, but not completely gone. Now as for the company, I do feel they dont have the pens as high a priority as in the past.

 

To the OP, I would be extremely frustrated at this point with the issues you are having. Im currently wondering if the Homer I just acquired isnt going to have to go in for some service. Im not sure if its user or pen that just, occasionally feels off. Not sure I can put my finger 100% on the issue.

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Good grief.

Can you have your Miles Davis sent off to Hamburg? They are competent. I speak from personal experience.

Edited by meiers
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Hopefully you will soon have it back. Good to hear the major problem was resolved. Feed alignment sucks.

Edited by ygv

Namiki Yukari Maki-e Zodiac Horse 1st edition, by Masaru Hayashi 林胜 | Namiki Yukari Royale Vermillon Urushi No. 20 | Pelikan M1000 | Montblanc WE 2004 Franz Kafka LE | Montblanc POA 2018 Homage to Ludwig II LE 4810 | Montblanc POA Joseph II 2012 LE 4810 | Montblanc 146 75th Anniversary SE | Montblanc Meisterstück Great Masters James Purdey & Sons SE | Montblanc 118232 Heritage Collection Rouge et Noir Spider Metamorphosis SE Coral | Montblanc 10575 Meisterstück Gold 149 | Montblanc 114229 Meisterstück Platinum 149 | Montblanc 111043 John F. Kennedy LE 1917 Rollerball | Montblanc 116258 The Beatles SE Ballpoint | Montblanc 114723 Heritage Collection Rouge et Noir SE Rollerball | Montblanc Meisterstück Platinum-Coated Classique Ballpoint |

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  • 1 month later...

Well...the pen is back from the DFW Service Center. I'm simply not impressed, for whatever reason the quality control at the service center remains non-existent. I really am dumbfounded over the seeming lack of care for their customers and the brand as a whole. It is hard to see in the pictures below as I don't have a macro lense for my phone but the tines are splayed enough that ink continuously dries in the nib and feed. Enough air is moving through the split in the tines that if the pen sits, even capped, for half an hour the ink dries and clogs the nib. After cleaning (or priming) the pen will write intermittently, however since the tines are splayed there is not enough capillary action to keep the ink flowing. In addition, the pen came back with tool marks at the base of the feed.

 

post-147575-0-25014900-1552843129_thumb.jpg

It is hard to see but there is a distinct and significant gap between the tines.

 

post-147575-0-24834800-1552843141_thumb.jpg

Underneath

 

post-147575-0-78778500-1552843148_thumb.jpg

Tool marks at the bottom of the nib

 

The only silver lining in this whole trainwreck of an experience is that I've had an excuse to really get to know the manager and staff at the Tysons Corner, VA boutique. They have provided a much needed modicum of customer service and genuine expertise which seems to be missing from the DFW service center. Needless to say they agree with me completely. The pen will be going back (for a third straight time) for a new nib. Perhaps I'll eventually be able to enjoy it :wallbash:

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Well...the pen is back from the DFW Service Center. I'm simply not impressed, for whatever reason the quality control at the service center remains non-existent. I really am dumbfounded over the seeming lack of care for their customers and the brand as a whole. It is hard to see in the pictures below as I don't have a macro lense for my phone but the tines are splayed enough that ink continuously dries in the nib and feed. Enough air is moving through the split in the tines that if the pen sits, even capped, for half an hour the ink dries and clogs the nib. After cleaning (or priming) the pen will write intermittently, however since the tines are splayed there is not enough capillary action to keep the ink flowing. In addition, the pen came back with tool marks at the base of the feed.

 

attachicon.gif IMG_6492.jpg

It is hard to see but there is a distinct and significant gap between the tines.

 

attachicon.gif IMG_6493.JPG

Underneath

 

attachicon.gif IMG_6494.JPG

Tool marks at the bottom of the nib

 

The only silver lining in this whole trainwreck of an experience is that I've had an excuse to really get to know the manager and staff at the Tysons Corner, VA boutique. They have provided a much needed modicum of customer service and genuine expertise which seems to be missing from the DFW service center. Needless to say they agree with me completely. The pen will be going back (for a third straight time) for a new nib. Perhaps I'll eventually be able to enjoy it :wallbash:

 

 

I am sooooooo sorry that you have had to go through this! And I am very concerned as I just sent my 146 in to have the nib exchanged. I hope it won't take a month for that simple task, but I will be furious if it comes back damaged.

 

I am also concerned not only by the damage to your nib and feed, but the feed is still not aligned correctly. That is a simple fix and should have been noticed right away.

 

Please keep us informed.

"Today will be gone in less than 24 hours. When it is gone, it is gone. Be wise, but enjoy! - anonymous today

 

 

 

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Well, I just got off the phone with a Montblanc Customer Service Ambassador. My simple nib exchange will take another 12 weeks (yes! Weeks! not days). They have to order the nib from Germany and Germany is backlogged.

 

As my father would have said, "What a way to run a railroad!"

 

Morale of the story: Get the nib you want at the boutique, or be prepared to wait a long time!

 

Let me contrast this with another couple of "pen stories".

 

Seven days ago, the same day I sent out my Montblanc, I sent my Franklin Christoph pen back to F-C for a nib tune-up. I also asked for another nib as a back-up, which would have to be specially ground. I got the pen and the nib back in 5 days! Amazing friendly and fast customer service! And both nibs are perfect.

 

About a month ago, I sent two Parker 51's off to The Write Pen be "reconditioned". Within 2 weeks, the pens were returned and are stunning and working very well!

 

O.K., I am getting off my soapbox now. Thanks for letting me vent.

Edited by DrPenfection

"Today will be gone in less than 24 hours. When it is gone, it is gone. Be wise, but enjoy! - anonymous today

 

 

 

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at this point, I'd probably visit a nibmeister at the Baltimore/DC pen show and have them adjust the whole thing right in front of me. I've had Mike Masayuma adjust 3 of my MB's and they all write perfectly. Well worth it. I've also sent my MB's to get serviced every 3-4yrs and I have not had the similar issue. Though I have not done it lately. My last MB service was 14 months ago via the Tyson's Corner Galleria boutique for my MB149. It came back fixed with new innards for a leaking issue.

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Good grief.

Can you have your Miles Davis sent off to Hamburg? They are competent. I speak from personal experience.

I did ask, and Robert (the general manager of the Tysons Boutique) was unsure if he could bypass DFW and send pens other than LEs straight to Germany for service. He promised to bring this, and a number of other concerns, up this coming week when a contingent of management will be visiting the US from Montblanc headquarters.

 

at this point, I'd probably visit a nibmeister at the Baltimore/DC pen show and have them adjust the whole thing right in front of me. I've had Mike Masayuma adjust 3 of my MB's and they all write perfectly. Well worth it. I've also sent my MB's to get serviced every 3-4yrs and I have not had the similar issue. Though I have not done it lately. My last MB service was 14 months ago via the Tyson's Corner Galleria boutique for my MB149. It came back fixed with new innards for a leaking issue.

The pen is still under warranty, and now since the nib is unusable I plan on having them replace it.
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Hopefully you didn't have to pay for shipping for each warranty issue. For other pen manufactures, when I return an item for warranty I'm required to pay for shipping. At that point I'd rather send the pen to a trusted nibmeister and pay $50 to make sure the work is done right.

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