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Dear Diary: Today I Ruined a Pen

2020-03-13 3 min read Fails Fountain pens Teknikal_Domain

Note: This isn’t one of the backlogged posts, this one actually just happened.

So, yeah this was fun.

I was giving all my pens a thorough flush as, well, for most of them it was time for it, and for two of my pens (both the TWSBI brand ones), that means unscrewing the piston off the back. Anyone want to guess what happened just off that alone?

First, a bit of background knowledge: both TWSBI pens that I have, the Eco (Translucent green, nice), and Vac700R, both actually come with a little wrench-thing to unscrew the piston and remove it. The TWSBI Eco comes with an actual plastic part with depth to it, and the Vac700R has what seems to be a (rather thick) piece of punched and engraved sheet metal, and it feels like aluminum, but I’m not a metallurgist (yet).

The Eco has reverse threads, to unscrew the piston, you have to turn it to the right. The Vac700R has normal threads. Next round of guessing, commence.

Now I’m willing to admit that this was 100% my mistake, and the pen is still usable, just not as “safe” (more on that later), but, TWSBI, don’t change threading like that on your pens please. I’m really not that bothered by it’ it’s just a pen, but this one, well.. there’s some hurt. See the Vac700R is a good pen, and I actually use it as my primary writing pen, partially because it’s a vacuum filler (and therefore cool), and has a giant ink capacity compared to the rest of my pens, at 2.37 mL, as compared to my converter pens that average 0.7 mL, and is only challenged by the two Noodler’s pens that I have (that are for special inks anyways, not extended writing), coming in at 2 mL and 2.7 mL. The problem is that it cost $65, meaning it’s a little more painful to order another one of these, as compared to if I damaged my Jinhao pen which is $10. Ouch.

So, I was trying to unscrew the piston here. And yes I realized that I disregarded the NUMBER ONE PIECE OF ADVICE, “if you have to use force, you’re doing it wrong,” but… eh oh well. I was turning it in the wrong direction, primarily because trying both directions did nothing, and the wrench slipped, digging itself into the threads and bending out of place. Once I got it off, the threads were torn up enough that they completely stripped out the (plastic) inner threads of the handle / cap, so now it can’t positively lock down and screw in, meaning there could be a bit of a leaking issue if not put away correctly, because that screwing down is what actually seals off the ink chamber.

What this means is that it’s still a functional pen, but practically there’s a higher chance of having a bit of a leak if I try and put it in my pocket or anything else, because if that gets bumped, there’s nothing holding it in place.

Guess it’s back to throwing money at Goulet Pens, again.

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