Why clean a fountain pen?
One of the most frequent repair questions we get asked is how to fix a broken a nib. We often find the issue is the fountain pen simply needs a good clean, yet customers are often nervous of doing this themselves. Hopefully with our step by step cleaning guide this will make the job seem less daunting.
How do you know if this is the problem? Common symptoms of a pen in need of cleaning include slow or inconsistent ink flow, scratchiness, and skipping. We would always recommend that your fountain pen be cleaned every 4-8 weeks, even if they are still writing well to avoid problems in the future.
A step by step cleaning guide
- Carefully remove the cartridge or converter from inside your pen.
- We would then recommend using cold tap water to flush through the nib and gripping section of the pen. Please do not use any solvents to try and clean your pen, this can cause permanent damage to the nib.
- If you have a built in converter we recommend flushing the nib by drawing cold water up through the nib and forcing the water out. As you would usually fill from your ink bottle.
- Once you have done the above gently blow air through the nib assembly to clear all liquid out of the nib.
- Then dry the nib and gripping section with a soft cloth or paper towel.
- If you feel the above steps have not worked either repeat the above steps or move on to the next step.
- If you feel there is more dried ink in your nib which clogs as you try to write we would recommend carefully taking off the nib section of your pen then placing it into a glass of clean water and let it soak overnight.
- Place a sheet of kitchen roll at the bottom of the glass to rest the nib on and let the water level completely cover the nib.
- The next morning gently rinse the nib with tepid water and repeat this until the water runs clear.
- As before gently blow into the nib assembly to remove any excess water.
- We recommend that you then dry the nib and gripping section with a soft cloth or paper towel.
- You may now place a new ink cartridge or an ink converter into the front end.
How to Store Your Pen
The nib should remain writing point up when not in use so the ink will drain down into the converter or cartridge. While this goes against your natural instinct this does help avoid drying or clogging of the nib.
Placing your pen into a pen case or pouch will also protect the pen from being scratched, keeping the finish looking new.
When flying, store your pen with the writing point upright when not in use. Ensure that either a full cartridge or converter is inserted or remove the existing cartridge/converter prior to the flight.