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Is This Some Sort Of Aurora Piston Repair Hack?


RayCornett
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While beginning an Aurora 88K piston replacement I removed the section/nib unit and saw this. I have yet to touch it. It looks waxy. Has anyone seen anything like this? I am hoping the retaining nut and such are there and this is not all that is holding the seals in place...

 

edit- It definitely seems to be wax after touching it. I also touched a razor blade to it lightly and it did nick the substance which is another reason I think it is wax. Once fully extended like this the piston knob keeps turning.

post-125250-0-23324300-1577739369_thumb.jpg

Edited by RayCornett
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You find all kinds of things when you open up a pen. Almost nothing surprises me anymore. It should be cork. I would guess that they didn't have any cork, so decided to try wax.... or something.

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You find all kinds of things when you open up a pen. Almost nothing surprises me anymore. It should be cork. I would guess that they didn't have any cork, so decided to try wax.... or something.

Here's hoping nothing is missing when I remove whatever it is....

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Well,,,alrighty. I cut a sliver off of it across the top and it was hanging on by just a bit. As I pulled the piece off the bit it was hanging on stretched quite a ways. My guess...............rubber cement.....

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It seems the seals are there but that perhaps they placed the rubber cement over the end for whatever reason. Once I get it removed i'll find out if the retaining nut is still there. I would hope it is because SOMEthing is holding the seals on. I think maybe they didn't have replacement seals/cork so they put the rubber cement on to perhaps act as a seal.

post-125250-0-21410200-1577748855_thumb.jpg

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There should be a flat nut on the end ahead of the seals. The end of the piston where the nut fits often breaks down from contact with ink. Rather a common failure. I repair this, replacing the threads.

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There should be a flat nut on the end ahead of the seals. The end of the piston where the nut fits often breaks down from contact with ink. Rather a common failure. I repair this, replacing the threads.

Luckily the nut and screw are there. It seems they trimmed down the nut to give something for the cement to adhere to. I am relieved. I was assuming the screw and all were going to be missing. The cement came off in one piece.

post-125250-0-33285100-1577750947_thumb.jpg

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Well, after cleaning everything up I noticed the nut is still there and seems perfectly fine. Apparently whoever did this carved a cone shaped piece to go over it and then placed the rubber cement over THAT.

I am putting it back together today without the cone part on the end, putting some silicone grease on the sides and giving it a go to see if there are anymore problems or if this solved it.

EDIT- Not yet! I figured out why the cone piece is there. The head of the screw is slightly too narrow and the retainer nut is not secured in place because of that, so it slips right off. I have read that some add silicone to the screw head to keep it from being in contact with the grease. I may try this and fill in the space around the screw head and that may secure it.

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Edited by RayCornett
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An Aurora 88 series piston does not normally have a screw to hold the seal. The nut is meant to screw directly onto threading to retain and tension a set of fibre washers (or o-rings or cork if you switch to those). It seems that (as mentioned by Ron Z above and encountered also by me) the thread has deteriorated so the screw is a repair attempt which then needed a cone and goo to kludge the kludge.

X

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That's what I was talking about. The threads on the end of the piston broke, leaving a little bit on the end to almost work. The piston can be repaired as noted above. Hopefully the screw on the end into the piston hasn't borked that possibility. It looks like they used 0-rings for the repair too. Aurora used flat rubber separated by thin plastic spacers. That works much better than 0-rings, which can jam in a barrel.

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That's what I was talking about. The threads on the end of the piston broke, leaving a little bit on the end to almost work. The piston can be repaired as noted above. Hopefully the screw on the end into the piston hasn't borked that possibility. It looks like they used 0-rings for the repair too. Aurora used flat rubber separated by thin plastic spacers. That works much better than 0-rings, which can jam in a barrel.

I'll do another picture with the nut and such removed. I have seen screws on the ends before but maybe that was just a repair job. I did see one a few minutes ago with a screw in an 88 repair play by play tutorial but it looked like it was there before they started. I could be wrong. Also, it's not o-rings on this one. It looks like, if anything, they used latex to make washers and they may be too thick.

Edited by RayCornett
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Ok Ron and Praxim, I unscrewed the nut, took all the bits off and i seems you're both right, of course. I screwed the nut back on on with nothing there and it stayed. I took the nut back off, put one washer on, as two is way too thick considering how thick these washers are, and it seems the threads are now stripped on either the piston or the nut. I'll have to get a better look. But, yea, when I screwed the nut back on with the washer, it kept spinning. I thought maybe even one washer was too thick so I took it back off. When I put the nut back on with nothing on the piston the nut kept spinning which means stripped threads of course.

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This is what often happens with the piston on a Aurora 88. The end decays, and the threads break at the peak, or fail completely as they did here.

 

http://www.mainstreetpens.com/pix/Aurora88_damaged.jpg

 

I remake the threads, and attach them to the piston, replace the seal, install the nut and then cut the threads to the proper length. This shows the threads replaced.

 

http://www.mainstreetpens.com/pix/Aurora88_small.jpg

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This is what often happens with the piston on a Aurora 88. The end decays, and the threads break at the peak, or fail completely as they did here.

 

http://www.mainstreetpens.com/pix/Aurora88_damaged.jpg

 

I remake the threads, and attach them to the piston, replace the seal, install the nut and then cut the threads to the proper length. This shows the threads replaced.

 

http://www.mainstreetpens.com/pix/Aurora88_small.jpg

Yep. That is pretty much what mine look like but with just a hint of rounded threading.

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...I remake the threads, and attach them to the piston, replace the seal, install the nut and then cut the threads to the proper length....

 

So you don't recommend the glob-o'-wax solution?

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  • 4 weeks later...

Here is the Indy Pen Dance take on repairing this problem:

https://www.indy-pen-dance.com/aurora-88-piston-repair.html

 

I have not attempted it. Ron Z's method looks more elegant, though.

Yes. I have seen this one and this sort of seems like what they attempted. Screw and all. But the head of the screw they used was not wide enough to actually hold the nut on so they put the contact cement over it to hold it on. This pen has since been shipped off to Mr. Zorn for him to work his magic :)

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