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    The parts of your fountain pen

    Your fountain pen consists of four parts when assembled—the cap, the nib, the barrel, and the ink reservoir. Most reservoirs are a piston converter, ink cartridge or a built-in piston The converter and the built-in piston require fountain pen bottled ink. The cartridge is a self-contained, disposable unit filled with ink.

    Fountain Pen Parts

    Common filling system

    Fountain Pen Filling System

    Removing the barrel

    Remove the cap. Then remove the barrel by turning it counter clockwise.

    Opening Your Fountain Pen

    Whether you are using an ink cartridge or the converter pump the fountain pen must first be primed with ink. Ink must be in the feed groove, in the feed wings, and under the nib before the fountain pen will write properly.

    Filling with a fountain pen converter

    Place the fountain pen, nib first, into the bottle of ink until the nib is entirely covered (Figure A). Twist the piston converter counterclockwise at the top. This forces the air out of the converter. Then twist the top of the piston converter clockwise to draw the ink up into the converter. While holding the nib above the bottle of ink, slowly twist the piston converter counterclockwise until a bead of ink flows from the tip of the nib (Figure B).

    Filling Fountain Pen



    If this is the first time the pen is used then the pen has not been properly primed. Prime the pen by squeezing the cartridge hard; you need to see a lot of ink come out of the tip.

    If the fountain pen has been in use for a while and has written well in the past first run a small stream of cold water over the tip of the nib-test the pen – it should write. If this does not work try priming the pen again. If this does not work you may have to flush out the pen entirely. Do not soak your entire pen in water. Unscrew nib section from the pen and soak or flush this.

    Fountain Pen Cleaning and Maintenance

    Cleaning Your Fountain Pen

    Just as your car needs its oil changed, your fountain pen needs internal cleaning. A once a month cleaning will often save you a trip to the service center. For built-in piston fillers, fill and empty the pen three or four times with room temperature water to dissolve the solids. This is especially important if you change brands or even colors of ink, or use a cartridge exclusively (some inks react with each other, creating a viscous substance).


    Pens also need to be cleaned regularly - especially if cartridges are used most. Separate the cartridge carefully and hold the nib section with the nib facing down under room temperature tap water until the water runs clear. Never put your pen away for an extended period with a cartridge full of ink in the pen.

    Choice of Paper

    Use only high-quality paper or at the very least, don't use coated or "fuzzy" paper. The nib will clog and cause a loss of ink.

    Storing your pen

    If your fountain pen will not be used for an extended period of time, remove and clean the nib and converter. This prevents ink from drying and clogging the pen. Always store your pen with the nib in an upright position. This allows the ink to stay in the reservoir to prevent evaporation.


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