Falling In Love With An Old Friend02/04/2014
Acquiring new pens is a rarity here. So repairing old ones and pairing them with well-suited inks adds a freshness to my rotation. A few weeks ago, the Pilot Preras became winners. Then last night I took my own advice and attempted to rescue another pen.
This time it was an old friend, the early 1990’s blue marble Pelikan M200 that has long suffered from a stuck piston. As a result of that affliction, this poor pen has endured years of neglect. Screwing up some courage, I unscrewed the original extra-fine nib, wiggled the knob with a gentle rocking motion, and was surprised to find that the piston now moved freely. The extra-fine nib did not fit my current preference, but an unattached Binder modified stub would do. So I fitted the nib and pen together creating a lovely Pelikan stub.
To help the piston glide in the chamber, its inaugural fill is Noodler’s Blue Eel, a lubricating ink. On Apica 6A10 paper, the nib has proven a smooth writer that lays down a satisfyingly wide line. Leafing through my ink notes, I found four additional inks that would be compatible with the barrel: Noodler’s Navy, Noodler’s 54th Mass., Diamine Prussian Blue, and Iroshizuku tsuki-yo. J. Herbin Perle Noire or Noodler’s Black would be good in it, too. It’s going to be fun finding another perfect match or two.
A word of caution is in order. I was willing to further damage the Pelikan and send it off to hospital if my efforts proved disastrous. For a pen that was receiving no use, it was worth a try. Worst case would have been a relatively easy repair for someone who knows their stuff. I do have a pot of a proper piston lubricant should that have been needed. So compared to other repairs, this situation presented an acceptable risk.
Making minor adjustments to the Preras and the Pel has been very effective. I have three “new” pens to love and it isn’t even Valentines Day yet. What a great start to a new year!