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Identify a Sheaffer Pen
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Hello everyone :)

My grandmother passed last year and while going though her things I accidentally found a Sheaffer box with two pens in it. One is a Parker 51, the other one is a Sheaffer pen which I'm having a hard time identifying.

There's nothing on the pen or the box to help me figure out the model or when it was made, but seen as it was my grandmothers I'd say my time frame is 1940's-1970's. Also, I'm brazilian, so I really don't know where it was bought. Her Parker 51 is Made in the US, although I know at some point they made Parker pens in Brazil as well.

Anyway, there's no way of knowing how long it's been since the last time it was used. I managed to clean her Parker 51 which had some dry ink in it, now I need to buy some ink to refill it and see if it works, but I have a feeling it does. However, I can't seem to understand the mechanism on this Sheaffer pen. I don't even know how I would go about cleaning it.

I have never owned a fountain pen before, so I really have no idea what I'm talking about here. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Here are some pictures of the pen:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/8750966/DSC01410.JPG

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/8750966/DSC01411.JPG

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/8750966/DSC01412.JPG

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/8750966/DSC01413.JPG

Thank you for any insights!



-- Edited by Chthulhu on Monday 4th of July 2011 03:46:26 PM

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Hello!

First, welcome to The Community!

The Sheaffer pen you have appears to be a TD (vacuum filler) type pen. It has a conical nib (metal base wraps around feed), which is usually seen in Snorkel type pens (similar, but has metal tube coming out of the feed!).

There is a rubber sac inside the metal sleeve in your last photo. This should come off relatively easy with a gentle "pull". Do not rock it from side to side, just a straight pull to take it off the pastic section. If this sac is in one piece, you are set. If not, it will need to be replaced. The best thing to do is have it restored by an "expert".

When the pen is all together, there is a "knob" at the end of the barrel. You unscrew it, and you pull the sleeve inside the barrel. When the sleeve is pumped back and forth, the sleeve that sits inside creates a "vacuum" chamber that compresses the sac. This is how this pen is filled (there is also a rubber o-ring inside the barrel).

The Parker sounds like a squeeze (aka aerometric) filler. The sac sits in a metal housing, and you squeeze it to fill it. You can test it with regular tap water. Just squeeze to fill over the sink. Be careful, as it may still have ink residue in it!
You can also test that Sheaffer sac the same way if it is on one piece (and you get that sleeve off!).

You can get a lot of info on-line on these types of pens. Two that I recommend are www.penhero.com and www.richardspens.com
Penhero is a great reference site for pen names, types, etc..
Richard's site can help with actual repair info and tips!

I hope this helps! Let us know what you discover, and how the sacs are on these pens!

smile.gif Frank



-- Edited by Frank on Sunday 3rd of April 2011 09:43:59 PM

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Thank you, Frank! This is really helpful.

The Parker wasn't hard to figure out, first of all because it's a classic pen and I instantly recognized it. Also, there are filling instructions engraved on the inside :)
It's exactly like you said, a rubber tube that you fill by squeezing a metal bar against it (4 times, it says). I filled it with tap water a few times to clean it and some ink residue came out. Now I just have to buy some ink, which I'll do today, and I believe it'll be ready to become my new favorite pen :)

The Sheaffer, though, has no instructions or model reference or anything. My first instinct was to pull the metal sleeve, like you said, but it didn't even move, so I thought maybe it wasn't meant to come out. What you said made sense, though. There are two little holes on the sleeve, so I poked them gently with a pencil and I could feel what appears to be a rubber tube, similar to the one on the Parker, on the inside. I pulled it up with all my strength and it was really stuck, but I managed to get it out. It seems like the rubber tube melted and got stuck to the barrel. It broke when I pulled out the barrel, and a part of it is stuck to the nib part. I'm sure I can scrape it out, though. (Here's a picture: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/8750966/DSC01447.JPG) So I would need to replace this rubber tube.

At first I didn't get what you were saying about the knob, but now I found it. I had seen a "cut", so to speak, at the end of the plastic barrel, and tried to move it up or to the sides, but no such luck. I noticed a metal tube inside the barrel, and it looked screwed on, so I unscrewed it with a screwdriver on the inside and it released the knob, which I can now move with my hands - it was stuck, but now it seems to work perfectly.

So it appears that all I would have to do is replace the rubber tube. If the problem is simple, I'd like to try and fix it on my own, out of curiosity and also because it will be hard to find a professional in my city. I went looking for tubes on eBay and from what I can see most offers are for the sac plus a barrel and a point seal (a rubber ring and a round plastic piece). I can't see any of those in my pen. Am I not looking for the proper model? I searched for Sheaffer snorkel, but the tubes do seem much longer than my pen. It seems if there was any kind of seal for the tube, it was glue or something like that. No other pieces.

I'm an industrial designer and very crafty, but obviously not a pro. Tell me honestly: do you think I'm in way over my head, or is this something I could do? :)

Thank you for the website recommendations. I'm going to try to find out more about this pen and repair options. In the meantime, any tip is well appreciated!

_______

p.s.: I just re-read your post and saw that you mentioned the O ring. I can't actually see it in the barrel, but the "pump" appears to be working fine, even if I can't actually test it. The other piece, though, I'm still clueless about.

_______

p.p.s: I bought ink to fill the Parker but it's not working quite right. The ink is not coming out smoothly, impossible to write even one word. It seems... clogged, perhaps. Also, very, VERY scratchy.

-- Edited by Shades of Red on Monday 4th of April 2011 11:43:19 AM



-- Edited by Shades of Red on Monday 4th of April 2011 02:10:37 PM

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wink.gif Your off to a good start!

Sheaffer: Yes, you do need the rubber sac. You do not need the point seal. That is for the Snorkel pens
(to seal the rod opening that comes out of the nib feed). The ring that I was referring to actually is in the pen barrel.
If you look in from the back of the barrel (where the knob/rod were), you will see a lip just past the opening.
In that lip sits a rubber gasket (O-ring). This usually needs to be replaced to allow the "vacuum" process to occur.
If that gasket is hardened, the seal will not occur. You can try replacing the sac without this, but the results may not be perfect. You will know if the pen does not draw ink.

Parker: If the pen does not write, but does take in ink, then the nib could be clogged. An easy fix for you may be to try soaking it in water. If you have an ultrasonic cleaner, even better! You can also continue to flush it by running water through it until you can see the water coming through the nib. Anything more may require someone with experience to look into cleaning this pen more thoroughly (aka taking it apart/etc...)

I hope this helps!

smile.gif Frank



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Yes, it really does!

I'll try cleaning the Parker and I'll order the sac for the Sheaffer. I'll let you know what happens!

Thanks so much for your help!

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DWL


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There is a 'sticky' video called 'under the hood of a 51' in the workbench/repair forum that I shot a few years ago. It'll show you how to clean and reseat everything properly.

The sheaffer isn't a hard fix at all. When you get your ink sacs in let us know & i'll walk you through the restoration process.

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Hello again!

I still haven't gotten around to fix the Sheaffer pen, but I did fill the Parker and it was partially clogged, I couldn't write even a word without missing some spots. I haven't given them the attention they deserve, but I'm now trying to clean the Parker 51 by letting it soak in water. The think is, it's been there for maybe 10 days or more. I cleaned it all up, I washed the nib under running water, I even sucked out the rest of the ink on the nib with my mouth (I know, I probably shouldn't, but it works!). I decided to let it soak a bit more and the water keeps turning green. So I change the water, and a day later it's green again. And it's been like this for more than 10 days. I'm not sure what to do, does that mean it's working? Am I ruining my pen? Should I find a specialist to take it to?

DWL, where can I find this video you mentioned?


Thanks again for your help!

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Rawr.

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Shades, what you're experiencing is nothing unusual. Ink that has dried and been left for years can take a *long* time to dissolve out in water. try filling and emptying the pen a few times between soaks. You can also speed things along by switching from plain water to a 1:9 solution (no stronger!) of household ammonia in water, or a cycle in an ultrasonic cleaner if you have one. Otherwise, just keep doing what you've been doing, and eventually you'll stop seeing the green.

DWL's video is here: http://www.thefountainpencommunity.com/t12218358/under-the-hood-of-a-parker-51/


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Thank you, Mike! I guess I'll leave it soaking until the water stays clear!

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Unusual model, haven't seen that one before. Perhaps one that's been made of several models?

Edit to add: The cap looks like it's from an IMP VIII, the nib and section an Imp.II and the barrel a "Dolphin"(based on the chrome ring)..all with a couple of ???

Regards
Hugh



-- Edited by Hugh C on Monday 4th of July 2011 08:33:22 PM

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