Mai Street Pens

Main Page
About Main Street Pens
Restoration Services
Our Policies
Articles and Essays
Pens For Sale  -  main sales page
        Cheapskate Alley
        Stuff
        Pen Cases
We Buy Pens
Meet Us at Pen Shows
Testimonials
The Blue Finger Blog
Links

Stuff
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
This is where you'll find things like thread sealant,
head gaskets for Sheaffer vacuum fillers,  
pen repair supplies, tools, and other...
STUFF.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The tools and repair supplies listed on this page are ones that I use on a regular basis.
If it's shown here, you're likely to find it on my bench. Read on for details!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Vacumatic Jewel Tool        $4.50  each

COMMENTS:    
Parker Vacumatic and 51 jewels are a pain in the tush.  Once in a while they come out nice and easy.  Most of the time they hang in there and laugh at your attempts to get them out.  How in the world are you supposed to unscrew this flat thing that you can't grip with a pair of  anything - fingers, section pliers, slip joint pliers, vise grips,  or a vise.  You use these silly things.  I have for years.  I always have at least a couple in my tool box.   Not your ordinary stopper, they're softer and stickier so that they grip a  jewel as you press down, and boy do they grip.  

A couple notes on their use though.  It is possible to shear off a 51 jewel with these if you aren't careful.  You may still need naphtha to break down the rosin used as a thread locking compound, and some heat.  But your chances of getting the jewel off are better with these little things.  When they lose some of their stickiness, clean the rubber off with acetone and let air dry.  You can also sand the top layer a bit  to expose the rubber below the surface

About 1" wide at the top, and 1" deep.

   

LED   penlight                $10

COMMENTS:    
I like a lot of light when I work on pens, and have two bright lamps on my bench.  But  they aren't enough when I need to look down inside a pen.  A simple flashlight, whether LED or incandescent, has a beam that's too wide,  and the light reflects off of areas around the pen making it difficult to see down inside a pen or pen cap.   Years ago I bought  an LED flashlight that was really skinny, and had a focused LED beam that would shine down into a cap.  Neat!  But the problem is that when I get involved in a repair it's not uncommon for me to put the flashlight down without turning it off.  I was always running the batteries down, and the stupid things cost $10 or more to replace! (ouch!)

Then I found this little gem. It has a very bright LED that lasts years that has a lens in front of it to focus the beam (no scatter, no refection!),  and it uses a single, cheap AAA battery.   I was hooked.  I bought three - one to use, one as a spare in the tool box, and one in my supply cabinet as a backup.   I like it that much.  But I haven't needed them.  Over 3 years later I'm still using the same one, even though it's been dropped off of the bench, stepped on, and acetone spilled on it.  Do you get the idea that I like them?    I think that you need this bright little flashlight which is why I'm offering them here.  It's as indispensable as a pair of section pliers.

The package includes one AAA battery.

   
Silicone grease                         $5

COMMENTS:    
Pure, unadulterated silicone grease.  Designed to be used on  rubber and synthetic rubber 0-rings and seals.   This is a lower viscosity grease, i.e. it's stiffer than the stuff from scuba shops, and is more resistant to washing off than some others on the market, and silicone oil.   That means it's less likely to get into the ink or feed.   You'll find it on my shop bench and on the table at pen shows.   You use it on  anything that needs to be lubricated on fountain pens like  Sheaffer touchdown tubes,   plunger rods,  Pelikan  piston seals,  mechanisms etc.....   Net wt. 9.5 grams. 

Loupe with graticule              Temporarily out of stock

COMMENTS:    
Many collectors want to know how wide a line their pen lays down on the page.  You can't go buy just the dimensions of the ball on the end of the nib even though it might give you a good guess.  The spacing of the tines, the ink and paper used, and the  pressure on the page all make a difference in the actual width of the line.  The loupes that professional pen mechanics use can easily cost  $100-$150, and most folks just can't justify the cost.  We found these nifty little loupes recently and bought a bunch of them.  They're illuminated by an LED (even mine Bosch and Lomb isn't!)  and  have a scale  divided in tenths of a millimeter.   Professional grade?  No.  But decidedly useful  and  just right for a pen collector.

Actual lens diameter is  23.35 mm and can be adjusted to focus.   The LED is powered by 3 easily replaceable button cells (LR1130 - cheap on eBay)


   

 Main Street Pens wax free pen polishing kit       $10 

COMMENTS:    
There have been many discussions about what to use to polish a pen, and whether or not one should use wax of one kind or another to polish a pen.  My clients like to receive their repaired pens not only working, but looking great, but I have considered the arguments pro and con, and have moved away from using any polishes containing wax on vintage pens.

This is the last step in my repair process, done before the pen is put in it's bag as completed.  The polish contains no solvents, no wax - simply a water based polish that takes a really nice shine and turns it into a "wow!" shine that allows the colors of a pen to pop.   The kit contains a 1 fluid ounce bottle of polish and  a micro-fiber polishing cloth.  It's what I use all day, every day.    The cloth can be washed and reused when needed.

Note that if you have a pen that needs a heavy cleaning or polish you'll want to use micro-mesh or some other preliminary material before using this polish.    
 

Sunshine Cloth              $5.00

COMMENTS:    
I'm often asked what I recommend for polishing  sterling silver and gold pens, especially pens like a Parker 75 cisile'.  I have only one answer - a Sunshine cloth.  They  work very well indeed to remove tarnish from a pen or nib,  without any of the residue that gets into every nook and cranny from a paste polish.  Use something like Simicrome on a pen, and you'll take out the blackening on a Parker 75.   I've seen it, and repaired it, many times.   It's also effective in cleaning up the surface of a gold plated or solid gold pen.   Use sparingly though on plated metals.   You can also use a Sunshine cloth to polish a gold nib without fear of getting the polish into the slit or heart of a nib (that's a mess to clean out too!).  

The  Sunshine cloth  cleans with special non scratch micro-abrasives, and will last a very long time.  You can keep using the cloth, and  it will keep working long after  it appears to be loaded up with the removed tarnish.    Don't wash it though - you'll destroy it's ability to clean.

One  5" X 7 3/4" cloth  per tube/
   

Sheaffer Vacuum filler (AKA Wire pen) head gasket assortment   $15

COMMENTS: The material that one uses for the head gasket or piston washer on a Sheaffer wire  pen is important.  You need a material that will hold up well when exposed to ink, that will flex but be hard enough that it won't pull off of the  piston rod.  These washers are within 0.001" of the thickness of the material used by Sheaffer.  .   Unlike head gaskets made by generic punches, the diameter of these gaskets are precisely sized for the Sheaffer pens.  They're what I use when I repair a Sheaffer Vacuum filler.

Though not listed on our web site before, we have had the buna-N head gasket rubber available for sale.  Several folks have approached us asking if they could buy the head gaskets already punched.  So we now offer an assortment pack of head gaskets, with all three sizes.  The distribution in size based on our experiences repairing the wire pens.  

You'll receive a total of 20 in the assortment -  14 small gaskets (the most common size), 4 medium size (for the 500 and 1000  Balance wire pens) and 2 oversize, for the oversize Balance pens.

If you prefer to buy the buna-N sheets and punch your own,  a 4X4 sheet is $10,  3 for $25.  I strongly recommend that you buy the punch set from Francis Goosens (Fountainbel on FPN)  rather than use a generic punch.  

Sheaffer-formula thread sealant      $12

COMMENTS:    
When I visited the Sheaffer repair center, I was very interested in the  thread sealant that they used.  It was a light amber, nearly transparent, low oder,  and quite tacky.  After doing some research,  I have reproduced their thread sealant, using the same basic formula,  with exactly the same properties.  I now use it to seal threads on any and all pens that require thread sealant, the Parker 51 being the only exception, where I still prefer to use shellac.   It's also great for securing Parker Vacumatic and 51 jewels.

The price of the raw materials has doubled since we started making the thread sealant several years ago, so we now offer just the small jar.  
If purchased separately, or with the head gaskets, the sealant will be shipped first class mail
   

Sac cement   AKA orange shellac   w/attached brush              $10

COMMENTS:    
Shellac is the duct tape of pen repair.  You use it to secure PVC and latex sacs to sac nipples, to hold cap parts together, for all kinds of things where you want something to be stuck  but  not glued  in place.  It softens and releases when heated to about 130F.  I've been repairing pens for a couple of decades now, and have yet to go through a half pint can of shellac.  This is orange shellac in a 1 oz bottle with an application brush inside the cap.  Exactly what I use day in and day out.   See my comments about shellac on the Blue Fingers Blog.

 Reproduction Parker VP and the  (NEW!)   PARKER 65  filler units

COMMENTS:  Parker made the VP for just two years - a very short life compared to the decades long run of the Parker 51.  They're great pens,  but plagued with a vulnerable filler.  These long necked fillers were intended to be pulled out of the section, filled with ink and then inserted back into the pen, eliminating ink on the nib, and therefore wiping ink off of nib, section or any other part.  The problem is that the plastic used (plastic, not glass) is quite brittle and tended to break.   Many people shy away from the VP even though is a very comfortable pen to use,  because of the filler problem.  When the filler breaks, you have a dead pen.  Until now.

I'm proud to introduce my reproduction filler units.  Faithful to dimension and detail, these are exact reproductions of the original VP fillers.  If you have a VP filler, the remains of the broken one can be removed and my replacement installed.  If you  have a VP pen but no filler, I can provide a  complete replacement using a modified sac guard from an aerometric 51 or Parker 21.  The original breather tube is replaced with  one of stainless steel.  A #18 sac is used on the sac nipple.

If your 65 is not a cartridge/converter pen and uses a VP style filler,  I also have reproduction Parker 65 filler units.  The difference is that the 65 has a  smooth (VS splined) front end.    This keeps you from accidentally unscrewing the nib, and maybe cracking the "widows peak" on the front of the section.  Like the VP fillers, I can supply just the front end, or make a complete filler unit for  your Parker 65.  

Not sure if your 65  needs this filler?  Look in the end of the section.  If you see a piercing tube, it uses a converter,  If you see a hole, and maybe the flat end of a collector beyond it, you need this filler.

Fillers will be made to order - lead time 2-3 days after payment is received.

Reproduction VP/65  filler front end only  - $50
Reproduction   filler installed in your pens sac guard  - $55
Reproduction VP/65  filler with modified 51/21 sac guard (our choice)  -  $60


Loupe               $7.50

COMMENTS:    
Even though I prefer to use an eyeglass loupe  when I do nib work, I still keep a loupe like this handy.   Though inexpensive, I find that the lens is still bright with good magnification.  It comes in a plastic case.

   







 

© 2015 Ron Zorn

Contact Us | Privacy Policy