More Exploding Refills - This Time with Pics

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DrD

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Jun 26, 2019
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Columbus, Mississippi
Shortly after joining this group I reported that while unpacking some of my pen stuff which had been stored for several years I discovered much to my dismay that many of the refills in unopened American Flat Top Double Twist pen kits as well as the refills in finished pens had "exploded." This led to much discussion with some saying it must have been the transmissions. Well, today I worked my way to the as yet unpacked Cigar pen kits. Have a look at the attached photos. That's not transmission fluid folks. All five pics are of the same kit, but let me assure there's a whole lot of other Cigar kits that look exactly the same. Can't wait to get into the rest of the stuff.
 

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ed4copies

Local Chapter Manager
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Mar 25, 2005
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Racine, WI, USA.
Hi Don,

I have a bunch of pens with that same problem!! The manufacturer informed me that they were several years old and therefore this result was not unusual!!!!

I wonder why the manufacturers don't package the refills separately if this is an "ordinary" happening!!
 
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Jans husband

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May 4, 2020
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Doncaster England
Possibly because the refills are not genuine Parker/Cross etc. and a cheaper "clone"??

We all accept them as being useful, which they are, but maybe the answer is in "stored for several years"

Mike
 

DrD

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Jun 26, 2019
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Columbus, Mississippi
All of my pen making stuff as well as my collection of vintage fountains were packaged up and placed in moving boxes approx 12 years ago as I moved back to MS from Ohio. They were kept in the house, in a storage area on an enclosed front porch. Then moved to East Texas, then to Cincinnati, then to Chicago (actually Naperville then to Wheaton), then back to MS, returning to MS in 2013. Stored back in same storage area as before. Exposed to heat, maybe; extreme heat, no; cold, maybe, extreme cold, no. I had about 50 or so finished FlatTop Double twists and refills exploded in every one of them. However, not ALL of the HongKong refills exploded in some of the other kits, just about 1/2 to 2/3s of them did.

The reason for the post was just as a warning for those who store or don't use ballpoints for some time. Just like batteries - don't keep them in whatever they are in for more than a year. As for the unfinished kits, as in the photos, it's just a major nuisance to go through and clean the dried ink off whatever it got on. As for finished pens, that's a whole different beast. Kits had to be completely dis-assembled, cleaned and salvaged if possible. Most transmissions in the effected pens were useless.

The vintage fountain pens that were properly cleaned and stored were ok; those that weren't, well I'm old and can't take them with me anyway.

Back to Ed's comment - I vote for kit refills to either be eliminated or stored in separate zip lock baggies.
 

DrD

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Jun 26, 2019
Messages
604
Location
Columbus, Mississippi
Lee I know what you say to be true. All my gold Cigars are Ti Gold and they appear to be ok. I did notice this with a few of the FlatTop Double Twists and a few of the Streamline American pens and kits.
 

qquake

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Feb 8, 2004
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2,397
Location
Northern California
Wow, what a mess! I can't remember seeing this in 21 years of penmaking. I store my kits in the garage, and it gets quite hot in there during the summer, and cold during the winter.
 

DrD

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Jun 26, 2019
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Location
Columbus, Mississippi
Good point except they were never exposed to freezing temps. To date it appears the great majority of the miscreant pens were either FlatTop Double Twist or Cigar - kits or finished. Going back to Ed's post above: "I have a bunch of pens with that same problem!! The manufacturer informed me that they were several years old and therefore this result was not unusual!!!!" Yeah, I think it goes back to the manufacturer - thru the importer/distributor - and their sourcing of the refills. I've never seen this with any refill other than "Parker-style."
 

mick

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Joined
Mar 13, 2005
Messages
2,506
Location
Decatur AL, USA
I've found quite a few like that. I had them stored in an unheated or cooled garage for 2_3 yrs. I attributed it to that.

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