Pilot Vanishing Point part deux

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eggman

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Last May or June, I picked up a pilot VP with a medium nib. The more I used the pen, the more I liked the click mechanism and retractable nib. It has been my #1 pen to carry every day except to work. But over the last several months, it has gotten very scratchy and draggy feeling when writing with it. No matter what type of maintenance I have done, it hasn't helped it.

So two weeks ago, I was looking at some pens with gold nibs on various sites. I have been thinking about trying one out since they're supposed to be a step up from the standard nibs. Then I found the replacement guts with a 14k fine nib for a lot cheaper than a new pen for the VP. I thought what have I got to lose besides $80.

Once it arrived, I immediately filled it with Jacques Herbin Emerald of Chivor. Then inserted the new nib in pen and away I went.

SMOOOOOOTH is the best way to describe it. It has to be the best writing pen I have in my arsenal. No matter what type of paper I have written on it has been smooth as glass.

Was the gold nib worth it in this situation? Yes, it was. It turned a lousy writing pen into a great writing pen. Am I going only to buy gold nib pens from here on out? Heck no. I have a wife, a 120+year old house, a 1997 Jeep, pad(pipe), pad(pen), tad, iad(ink) and ham radio. The first two require the most upkeep hahahahahahaha.

If you have the chance to use or even buy a pen with a gold nib for a reasonable price you should consider it. I'm enjoying mine.
 

Blackhorse

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So far as I know the Pilot Vanishing Point fountain comes with an 18K gold nib when purchased new.  If everything worked as it should when you bought it...but then went south...was scratchy, etc. it’s likely that the tines of your original nib got misaligned somehow.  And it should be fixable.  Lots of tutorials on uTube on how to diagnose and fix.  

Is there a reason you think your Pilot VP did not come with a gold nib?  I think they are stamped 18K - right on the nib. Like in photo below.


 

eggman

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Good morning blackhorse,

The nib unit I purchased in fall looks almost exactly like that except it ha a <f> instead of a <b>.

The nib unit that was in pen has three lines of text on it, PILOT <M> 716 or 718. I couldn't make out the number 100% this morning. But there isn't any 18K marked on my min at all. My eyes are a little wonky today.

I did order the pen from a store in Japan. I saved a couple of bucks with the shipping over buying stateside. The downside to that was it took almost three weeks to get here. Maybe pens for the Japanese market are marked differently? I have no idea.

 

Blackhorse

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No...it’s marked accurately. What you have us a “Special Alloy” version of the pen that’s only ever been marketed in Japan. You paid the appropriate price for the pen. The steel should write just as smoothly as the gold as they are both tipped with same material...iridium I believe.

Still, if the steel nib suddenly went scratchy the tines are almost certainly misaligned. Look up on uTube for diagnostic info. You can rub the nib on paper in different directions to do a basic check. Like, if it’s scratchy when you run the nib from the right to the left then the right nib is misaligned lower than it should be...etc.
 

eggman

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Blackhorse, you are correct. I went back and checked, and it is the special alloy. I did check out some those nib alining videos. I may try that sometime in the future. I have so many darn projects, hobbies, and favors inline I'll never catch up. :lol!:

Now that I think about it have several fountain pen projects I have wanted to get done.
 

eggman

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Black Horse, I just checked the nib on the VP. When you move it to the right, it's pretty smooth. When you move it to the left it's rough. So maybe I can work it and get it smoothed out. It's worth a try.
 

Blackhorse

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So if it’s rough when you move it to the left that means the tine on the right is lower...it needs to slowly, slowly be bent upward.  There are effective ways to do that.  You just want to bent the right one up until the scratchiness goes away.


I think this is Matt Armstrong (no longer does vids on uTube).  

https://youtu.be/1YRnN99412o

But the search phrase is “how to align a scratchy nib” or close to that.  You should get like a dozen vids to watch.

 

kxg

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For a treasure trove of information on most things fountain pen, check out Richard Binder's web site.  Especially his Reference Pages. His site is at richards pens dot com (no spaces and a . for the dot - new member here without reference rights)  There are many articles and tons of information of a range of topics.  What's more, you can trust the information.  Before he retired from it, Richard was one of the foremost pen repair guys in the world.  Last I knew he is still doing some nib work at pen shows across the country.  He is a genuine pen wizard and an all around nice guy.
 
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