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Archive for October 5th, 2012

Getting to Know the New Kid

Posted by Dirck on 5 October, 2012

A recent spate of “Good lord, no one outbid me on that?” came home to roost this week, and it brings with it an oddity for Sheaffer’s anorexic era.  As a way of proving that they could go not only one thinner than the Targa with the creatively-named Targa Slimline, the company went on to work out a fountain pen based upon a pre-existing and nearly two-dimensional ballpoint called the TRZ.  When I saw the auction listing for a TRZ, my bid was predicated not on the pen itself but on it’s attendant half-dozen cartridges.  Those now-discontinued narrow cartridges are hard to get, and I thought it might be nice to get a few in hand; the prospect of meeting an unknown pen was somewhat muted by the extreme attenuation.  I’m not a believer in “you can never be too thin,” whether in pens or people.

The pen arrived in a decent box, making a nice change from the fate-defying (and, thus far, with some success) series of mere padded envelopes things have been showing up in.  Within the box… it was in a ziplock bag, marinating is its own ink.  Much eye-rolling, and pondering of the sense of some people’s children.  Since I had to wait for the over to heat before the preparation of the evening meal could take place, I decided to extract and rinse the pen at once.

At this point, I slightly withdrew the invective.  Unscrewing the section did not bring the expected result.  The threaded collar that was supposed to stay with the section stayed with the barrel.  A leak had stuck the collar in place in the barrel, while apparently dissolving the bonding agent that should have kept it in place in the section.  Interesting, in a low-grade expression of a Chinese curse meaning of the word.

I gave the collar/barrel assembly a quick rinse, got the collar (and very nearly empty cartridge) out and dropped it into my ultrasonic cleaner.  Section into the cleaner as well, and as the oven was still warming I used the cleaning cycle to rinse the ink off the happily unpitted brushed chrome of cap and barrel.  Then, with a brief pause for getting food underway lest my son turn cannibal again, I tool the parts out of the cleaner.

Four parts.  Uh-oh.

This is not as grim as it initially seemed.  The extra components were a teeny weeny little clutch ring, and a little plastic collar that it rides upon to make it look as if the ring is embedded in the body of the section.  It was, however, a surprise, and since the thing I could have done with the threaded collar they had been adhered to by old ink was to hold it under the same stream from the kitchen faucet that had briskly taken the ink off the outer shell of the pen.  Which, I reflected with heart in throat, would have seen those tiny parts washed off and into the drain.

Have I mentioned above a dozen times previously to think ahead of acting?  I believe I may have.  One day, I may fully incorporate it into my daily life.  Until then, I bow before the luck with prevented this small and not very sharp catastrophe, and I greet a new lesson in pen anatomy with a grin.

This is what one expects…

…but this is what I’d ended up with. What a shock!

Until my computer at home agrees with an “upgrade” to fibre optics which has left us almost entirely cut off from the outside world, I offer a link to someone else’s review of the same pen in place of a helpful and informative picture.  Editing will eventually follow offers these flanking pictures.




Today’s pen: Sheaffer Javelin
Today’s ink: Skrip blue-black.

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