WELCOME!

Welcome to my Custom Fountain Pen website/blog. I put this site together a while ago so that I could let some of my fellow pen enthusiasts and penmakers, as well as my customers, see what I have been up to lately in the workshop. I don't publish all of my pens here, but good percentage of them.

A Little About My Pens: I love doing fine work on the lathe, which is what got me into this work. That is, I enjoy the focus on the details of a project - the material and colour selection, the form, the fit and finish of the pen. I also test all of the my nibs before shipping. I fill the converter, run ink through the nib and feed, and write with it. I spend a significant amount of time smoothing and adjusting the nib of every pen that I sell. My goal, with each pen that I make, is to create a writing piece whose fit and finish will impress you when you first pull it out of the packing, and that will serve you well as a great writer when you fill it up with your favourite ink.

Have a look at my posts to see some of the work I am doing lately, or see my pricing guide in the link below to the right, or check the link to my current inventory of already-made pens (usually small, as most of my work is by commissions/orders).

Or, if you are interested, you can see some of the work I have done previously in my Custom Pen Gallery on Photobucket!

If you have a Twitter account, I am @drgoretex

If any of my posts generate particular interest, I will pin them as links on the right (eg 'Basic Nib Adjusting 101').

* ORDERS: Please contact me at kencavers@gmail.com to place an order.

* PRICES: Please see the link on the right side of the screen 'Pricing Guide' for an idea as to the cost of a pen.

* REVIEWS:
Have a look at the bottom of this page for some reviews done by previous buyers!

* HOW LONG WILL MY ORDER TAKE?:

IMPORTANT NOTICE: I am happily overwhelmed with pen orders. This gives me great joy in that my work is so well received, but saddens me that I cannot fill orders anywhere near as quickly as I would like. I am still trying to work through back orders, but if you have ordered from me and heard nothing for some time, feel free to email me and ask how things are going.
I still only make these pens in my spare time, when work and family time permit, and even then the productivity slows down during the coldest winter months thanks to my unheated workshop.
Given that I make these pens primarily as a hobby, I also reserve the right to pursue some other interesting pen projects in between filling orders.
I apologize for long delays in order fulfillment, which may in some case be over a year and a half. In the meantime, you are welcome to contact me to inquire about new pen orders, or to check up on a previously submitted order.

-Ken Cavers








Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Something a Little Different: A Pen Restoration Project - 1950's Waterman Ideal Lever Filler

Unrestored vintage pens seem to be extremely hard to find around here.   After a couple years of looking around, nothing - until a couple weeks ago, when my wife, who volunteers at a charity thrift store brought home a surprise.  Someone had brought in an old Waterman Ideal 'Leader' pen/pencil set, (circa 1950).  The pencil was not functional, and the lever-filler pen had an old, dull nib, no sac, and the pressure bar had broken off the lever.



I was considering sending it off to one of the many very talented pen restorers out there, but it suddenly occurred to me that I actually had some silicone sacs in stock (for my eventual plan to make button fillers and bulb fillers).  So I figured I might just as well have a go at this one, and see what I could do.



I found a link on FPGeeks.com to a tutorial on Richard Binder's website on how to repair the lever assembly (thank you Richard Binder!), so with a bit of patience and holding my tongue just right, I managed to reattach the pressure bar to the lever (this type of lever assembly has the lever attached to the pressure bar, while many do not).



The feed needed some serious cleaning, and the nib was a very dull matte, barely recognizable as 14K gold.  Fortunately the feed cleaned up well with soapy water, and the nib polished to a beautiful shine.

Using a bit of shellac to secure it, I put a new silicone sac onto the nib section, and with a bit of talc to lubricate it, it slid into the barrel with no trouble.

So, the acid test - I dipped the nib, and worked the lever, and lo and behold, it pulled up plenty of ink with no problem.



The nib itself is a flexy nib (not overly so, but much more than modern ones).  The writing sample shows a very poor example of how poorly one can actually write with a flexy nib  ;-)  The sample is on Clairefontaine paper using Pelikan Royal Blue.  The line variation shows up much better on cheaper paper.

Well, that was a first for me.  I can see why some say that vintage pen repair is addictive!

Thanks for looking!

Ken

2 comments:

  1. Holding your tongue just right obviously did the trick! Very nice!

    ReplyDelete