If you spend any time at all researching pens, you must have run into the Pen Addict blog. Brad Dowdy has gone live with his Kick Starter project. Pen cases, notebook cases and combinations of the two. Check it out and support Brad!
For some reason, this pen would catch my attention but I would forget it soon after. Don’t ask me why. In general, Faber-Castell designs don’t really interest me. The e-Motion, on the other hand, seemed really nice. When I had a chance to get one at almost half off the street price, I decided it was time to jump in.
The first thing that grabbed me about this pen is the shape. The cigar shape looks a bit fatter than most of my pens. I like chunky pens. I purchased the black pear wood version. The pear wood looks to be a kind of binde over a brass tube. This gives the pen significant weight. The cap alone accounts for nearly half of the total pen weight. This thing is heavy. Weighing in at 50 grams and the cap at about 22 grams, it is a hard hitting heavyweight. Understandable with an all metal chrome cap. Did I mention this pen is heavy? 😛 The cap has some FC branding engraved on it but it is tastefully done.
The clip is spring loaded and feels strong without being overly tight. The fit and finish of the whole pen is excellent. You can post the cap but the pen feels really unbalanced. If you leave the cap off, the pen is very comfortable despite being heavy. The balance is very good without the cap.
Nibbage. This pen has great nibbage. That is all that needs to be said really. It is a smooth medium steel nib in a #5 size. This is probably the smoothest “out of the box” experience I have had on a non-custom pen. The medium nib starts up and flows ink with no issues. The smoothness is just right. It does not skate on this Rhodia paper but it does not scratch either. One thing, it is a nail. I do wish it would have been a slightly larger nib purely for aesthetic reasons. I think a #6 nib would have looked better. I do realize it might not have been possible to do this because of the shape of the cap.
Shortly after I got this pen, I learned of an all matte black stealth version. It is on the higher end of my personal pen price spectrum (around $200 USD) but it is one I hope to have some day.
Thank you for reading!
The Fountain Pen Sith Lord
Some people prefer to get their fountain pens ready to write “out of the box.” I can appreciate that especially with some of the prices we pay for pens. Every once in a while it is good to get your hands dirty and just try some basic pen repair. My last post is a reflection of that sentiment. Keeping with that same theme, I present to you the story of an Esterbrook with an ossified sac.
I found the pen on eBay and the thing that caught my eye first was the deep blue color I had not seen before. I already have a blue Esterbrook and have seen plenty of blue Esterbrook photos. I could not be sure if the seller’s photos were accurate but I decided I could take a chance. The fact that the pen also had a #3556 “sunburst” nib was a big reason I wanted the pen too. The plating was gone but for the price I paid, I was not going to complain.
I read up on the process of replacing an ink sac and also watched a couple of Youtube videos. I was confident I would be able to get the job done. Esterbrooks are probably the most forgiving pens when it comes to repairing them. I took to Andeson Pens and purchase a #16 sac, shellac and some talc. I already had a heat gun but decided to go with my wife’s hair dryer instead. After less than a minute warming up the section, it came right out. One problem. The sac remained inside the pen barrel
I tried using some tweezers to pull the sac out of the barrel but it was just breaking off in small pieces. I decided to use an old computer chip puller along with a couple other computer related repair tools to try and get the sac out. It finally did come out. It was the original Esterbrook sac. I could still see the Esterbrook labeling on it.
I then measured out the new sac using the old sac as a lose guide along with the barrel. Once I was sure about the length I needed, I cut the new sac to size.
After scrapping the section nipple clean, I used masking tape to cover the section so I did not accidentally get shellac where it should not be. The surprise of the evening was that the old computer chip pullers work perfectly as sac spreaders. This made it really easy to slip the sac onto the section.
I was going to let the sac dry overnight but someone on Instagram and with access to “Da Book” told me that 20 minutes was long enough of a wait. By this time 30 minutes had already elapsed so I dusted the sac with talc by putting some talc in a small Ziploc bag and wrapping it around the sac. I closed it up with a rubber band and shook it up. A perfectly dusted sac emerged. 🙂
I put everything back together and made sure the nib was aligned with the lever box. I am OCD like that. 😛 I was satisfied everything would work. I did check the J-bar for corrosion and it was shiny. I did not bother pulling it out.
I filled the pen with Private Reserve Tropical Blue and enjoyed my “new” pen.
I hope this inspires you to try your own basic pen repair. Being able to do this opens doors to many pen prospects that otherwise would go untouched.
Thank you for reading.
The Fountain Pen Sith Lord.
A few months ago I came across a new to me Pelikan, the M30. At the time, I did not know the model number but I knew it was a Pelikan and it was a piston filler. I decided to take a chance and bid on the pen. When it arrived I was pleased with the looks of the pen. Testing the nib dry on some paper gave me an indication that the nib would be smooth. Unfortunately, once I filled the pen with ink, it started to leak.
My first instinct was that the piston seal was the source of the air leak because it did not travel smoothly. The piston knob was very tight for what I know Pelikan to be. I researched online and made a thread on the FPGeeks Forum. Soon I had my answer. The piston is user serviceable if you can find the right sized wrench to remove the piston assembly.
I have several TWSBI wrenches so even if one was small, I figured I could file it down to widen the opening of the wrench. That is exactly what I did. It did not need very much filing to get it to fit. Not even a mm is my guess. Just a few minutes work and I now have a wrench that works with my Pelikan M30.
I was able to remove the piston assembly and lube the piston seals with some silicone grease I sourced from Anderson Pens. One thing to note about removing the piston assembly, it is loosened by turning clockwise or the direction you would normally turn to tighten a bolt. It’s “righty loosy lefty tighty” for this one.
Since I had most of the pen apart, I decided to pull the nib and feed and clean them out. I went at the feed with a tooth brush as it had what looked like purple/red ink all over it. I also went over the nib with a jewelers polishing cloth to bring back its luster.
I worked on the gold filled cap too. It has a few dings but shined up nicely.
After what was only an hour or two of work, I had a fully functioning Pelikan Piston filler that is just a little older than I am. 🙂
If you are willing to take small risks, use a little elbow grease and choose carefully, you can find some hidden gems.
Thanks for Reading,
Fountain Pen Sith Lord.
*links in this post were provided for convenience and are not paid advertising nor do I have an affiliation with the entities linked.
I just received my Levenger catalog today and saw this Montagrappa. Really liking the black furniture version but the rose gold version is also good looking. Not the usual over the top styling I have come to associate with Montegrappa. Picture of Levenger’s web page for the pen.
It had to be posted. I’m like a little kid right now. I placed my order for my first 6″ Black Series action figure and it is the Sandtrooper. I can’t wait. 😀 Don’t judge, it does say Ages 4+. 😛