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Cleaning needed under a KOP nib…How to remove the nib?


J-tec

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Hi everyone,

 

I bought a used prime minister KOP that has been thoroughly used as designed by its previous owner and I just had to have it - this was a pen I’ve been seeking for a long time and I got it at a terrific price so I had to have it. When I received it, it was clear that the previous owner really used it but also did not take care of it or clean it very often. It was covered in black ink, and lots of lint as if they stored it sometimes without the cap on, in a jacket pocket or something like that. So I cleaned it extremely thoroughly with water using the Sailor cleaning kit when I got it, and it wrote beautifully, like butter, the minute I inked it after cleaning. I did notice however, that under the nib there seemed to be black lint coming from under the nib between the feed. So much so that I was able to take a tweezer very delicately and pulled some of it out - it’s black lint that is under there for sure, and it’s coming out of both sides of the nib. But it still wrote fine, so I left it for a month. After going through about 5 refills of the converter, today it started to blank out on me while writing. It still writes as wet and as smooth as ever, the tines are aligned, but my guess now is that something has moved under the nib and is blocking ink flow. It blanked a couple times on me before, but I thought perhaps it was just a fluke, or the ink was low, and as soon as I filled it up again it was fine. The only difference that happened today was that the blanking kept occurring, and I used a Mont Verde ink, which I hadn’t used before - so I could have switched back to what I was using before as it was fine, but it still wrote so wet that I figured it had to be something in the feed that has to do with the lint stuck in there as it kept blanking at random. 

 

I’ve dissembled pens before, and am pretty handy - so I took the pen apart tonight and sure enough everything that I didn’t take apart before was absolutely covered in the old black ink that was originally in it, as well as more of this black lint. So I cleaned all of that out and the last thing to do now is remove the nib, and it is impossible. I’ve tried different grip positions, various materials to assist in gaining grip, nothing has worked. I’ve even tried putting the nib in the fridge to shrink the material (this works like a charm on other stuck metal devices such as stuck polarizers on film lenses) and it still will not come out. Lastly I’ve tried a silicon lubricant, still nothing. I’ve cleaned the thing 3-4 times now to start again, my fingers are now killing me from all of these failed attempts and it still will not come off. I’ll leave it in water over the weekend and then come back to it, hopefully that will loosen whatever is holding it so incredibly firmly in there. 

 

I’ve looked at various videos on YouTube and they all say the same thing: 

- Either use rubber to wrap around the nib and pull straight out using your index finger and thumb to push on the nib and feed to pull straight out

- Lay the nib on your dominate hand’s index finger, place your thumb over the feed, put your left fingers on the base of the base and it should come right off with some effort and pushing straight out

 

Based on what I’ve tried to sfar - Does anyone have any other ideas of how to get this nib out? Or how to clean under it and clean the feed without removing it? If there wasn’t this lint in there I wouldn’t touch it of course but I do believe that is the culprit of what is causing the blanking to occur now unfortunately.

 

Thank you in advance!

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My first thought was...is this lint or some sort of mold? 

 

My second is to be quite careful (as I am sure you are being) and try some sort of surfactant/soap or the like to dislodge any stuck ink with a long soak and lots of patience. 

 

It would be very easy to mess things up and so I'd go very slowly and use lots of time to try to dislodge stuff in the pen. 

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Before pulling the nib, my inclination would be to flush several times with Rapido-Eze to remove any hardened, ancient ink that water alone will not dissolve.

Add lightness and simplicate.

 

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Thank you both for replying - I decided it was a bit out of my scope to try and remove anything under there as I tried again to remove and it's simply impossible. I'll send it out to a nib meister (if you have any recommendations in CA/Los Angeles area let me know!) to get done 

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Lucky for you there are 2 wonderful nibmeisters nearby.

 

Mike Masuyama is highly recommended and his website is  http://mikeitwork.com/

 

Gena Salorino is also highly recommended and her website is  https://www.customnibstudio.com/   Gena was trained by John Mottishaw and worked for many years at the old nibs.com

 

Both nibmeisters have worked on my pens in the past and are top in their field of expertise.

 

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Amazing! Thank you so much Jim, I really appreciate it - I'll reach out to both and see what their availability is. If you were to send your pens out to get adjusted tomorrow, which one of these two nib meisters would you lean toward?

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Sending a pen with a stuck nib and a flow problem, but writes "beautifully" to someone who grinds nibs, rather that to someone who repairs pens seems illogical to me.

Add lightness and simplicate.

 

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10 hours ago, J-tec said:

Amazing! Thank you so much Jim, I really appreciate it - I'll reach out to both and see what their availability is. If you were to send your pens out to get adjusted tomorrow, which one of these two nib meisters would you lean toward?

 

Imho I would send it to Mike Masuyama. He used to work for Sailor and also does pen repairs. Nib grinding is the majority of his work because it takes less time for more money.

 

For a Sailor KOP he would know and have the equipment for a balky stuck nib.

 

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54 minutes ago, JungleJim said:

He used to work for Sailor and also does pen repairs.

 

Thank you.  Knew about the Sailor part but not the repair. 

 

to add: I'd still try the Rapido-eze first tho'.  Might do the trick within a week and $15.  If not then send it to Mike and wait four months.  Wouldn't be suprised if the first thing he does is us his magical flushing solution.

Add lightness and simplicate.

 

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I would advise just watching a video on youtube on how to disassemble the pen. I don't get why everyone here recommends buying stuff or sending the pen for repair...

I disassembled an old 1911 just a week ago and it was very easy.

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16 minutes ago, Muchacho said:

I disassembled an old 1911 just a week ago and it was very easy

 

Especially when the nib is not firmly stuck in the section.

Add lightness and simplicate.

 

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4 hours ago, Karmachanic said:

 

Especially when the nib is not firmly stuck in the section.

My bad. I somehow forgot that part... So you can actually remove the housing ? You could try leaving it in soapy water for a day or two.

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Thank you all on the replies and input - I'm sending it out to Mike today. I left it in soapy water for 3 days, absolutely zero budge on the nib section (Muchacho: the nib and feed itself is stuck in the housing, which you're supposed to be able to remove. I've watched every Youtube video on how to do it and mine will not budge) 

 

@karmachanic - I appreciate the suggestion on rapido-eze - I've ordered some of this as well just to keep around in case I ever need it. Thank you! 

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I've handled a few of these special edition Prime Minister's Gift KOPs before, and have had identical experiences as you for every single one of them. Sailor KOP nibs are normally friction fit and come out relatively easily, but for this particular model, it's likely that Sailor glued the nib into the housing. It's a complete guess on my part, but it might be because the nib is stamped with the Japanese government's Paulownia Seal.

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Interesting! Thank you for chiming in on that - I wonder if that's the case. It's out being fixed now and the nib meister, Mike it work, said that he'd be able to fix it, so let's see what happens if he's able to remove the nib after all!

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