Thursday, October 27, 2011

Parker Pontiac Clip Restoration

Another fun job! I've had a lot of these lately...

This one was on one of my own pens, that will soon be available on my monthly tray of restored vintage pens.

It's a nice Parker Vacumatic Major, in golden pearl. Nice would be a bit of a stretch though... This pen came to me in the worst of conditions... Completely stuck/frozen blind cap, massive gouges on the blind cap, dirty as can be, etc.

But it was an interesting piece, and I wanted it just because. :)

Anyway, turns out this pen (and pencil) set were some kind of gift to the owner of the car company, Pontiac. They had a special little piece that is riveted onto the clip, with a logo and a name on it. The name being Pontiac, the logo, as it appears to me, of an indian-head.

So anyway, that indian-head was originally filled with a red paint, or enamel. Problem was it was chipped out, really badly, and the clip itself was dirty. Really dirt!

What to do?

Monday, October 24, 2011

The new website is up!

Well, after a long wait, and much anticipation, the new "official" website is up and running! It's been a huge process, and I have devoted much time to making this website function well. If you see any errors, or any mistakes, do me a huge favor and let me know.

And yes, to celebrate, a little photoshop-fun was in order. :)

This entire website was designed by me, from the ground up. I also did all of the photography and design illustrations for it. This website has been long in the making! It has taken me forever to find the time for it, but now that it's up, it's going to be a huge asset to me, and hopefully to you as well.

Let's do a quick run down of all the new features on the website:

- Services. I have updated my pen services, and organized them in a way that I think will be very useful. Each service has it's own respective page, that describes the cost, and what all is involved in the repair.

- Home page. The main page of the website will offer easy access to the 4 most-used pages. This will make it easy for new users to find what they're looking for. The 4 pages are:

1) Services
2) For sale - My monthly tray of vintage restored pens (see below for more details)
3) Sell your pens!
4) FAQ's

Let's go over the last three of these main-page categories real quick:

- Monthly tray of vintage restored pens! This is one that I have personally been looking forward to. I am opening up a web-based mini pen show, so to speak. You can read all the details on the page, so I won't go into them here, but I will say this - Make sure to check that page the first of every month! There will be a lot of AWESOME pens on there. This month (including November, since October is almost over) we've got some great ones including:

- Parker 51 Half Demonstrator - vacumatic - factory B nib!
- Parker 51 Aero - 1.3mm Minuskin re-tipped nib!
- Esterbrook Dollar pen - 2314F fine stub nib
- sheaffer Touchdown Valiant in Burnt Umber brown - very smooth XF nib

Overall there are 12 pens + 1 extra this month, and all of them are fabulous!

- Sell your pens! Now you can get rid of your space-stealing old junkers! I will buy almost any vintage (and/or modern) pen you can think of, and for a fair price too. Make me an offer. :)

- FAQ's. This is a very important new feature. This extensive list of FAQ's will always be growing, as I add to it over the next few years and decades. If you want to see something on there, I am fully open to suggestions!

As for now, those are all the "new" and "fancy" features that I've integrated into the website. I hope you will have pleasant time browsing around and getting used to the new layout.

Again, please let me know if something goes wrong - dead link, glitchy layout, etc. Reporting problems like this helps me to quickly identify the problem, and fix it!

I look forward to future updates, and working with the new website in general. It's definitely a huge improvement over the last blog-site that I was using. :)

Tyler Dahl

Friday, October 21, 2011

I'm back!

Well, I just got back home a few hours ago after a much needed vacation. I spent a week in Big Sandy TX, and another week at a state park in TN, around 2 hours away from my house. I had a great time, got to see some friends, catch up on sleep, and get prepared mentally for all the big changes coming up soon in my business. I really enjoyed myself, but it's great to be back home again.

Work will resume as normal on Monday (10/24/11), but I'll begin working through my emails tomorrow morning. I'll do my best to pick everything up where it was left off, and keep things speeding along at a good pace. I appreciate your patience! It's not easy for me to leave behind my business for two weeks like that.

As soon as all your emails are answered, and I begin getting your pens processed as usual, the new website is going on top of my priority list. I intend on finishing it sometime between the end of October, and the first week-or-two of November. The sooner the better!

I'm looking forward to getting back to work, and I'm sure you folks are eager to get your pens back soon! Feel free to shoot me an email if you have any questions.

Until tomorrow,
-Tyler Dahl

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Two interesting Esterbrook jewel jobs...

Well, this was another one of those fun repairs, the really unconventional ones.

In comes this beautiful Red Esterbrook J, in really good clean condition. But there was something rather wrong with the jewels - both the top and bottom one. Apparently, someone before me, and before the current owner, had attempted a very interesting "jewel-job" on these.

From what I could gather, this person was trying to create a "three-ribbed" jewel, the kind found on transitional J's. The problem: Well, a proper three ribbed jewel has three out-dented ribs in it, basically, more plastic than a normal J jewel. What happened to this jewel:

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How not to adjust a fountain pen nib

In a recent discussion on The Fountian Pen Network, I decided that I ought to clarify my intent when posting up these "how not to's".

Some people took some very light offense at repairers posting about how badly people goof up stuff.

I prefer to look at it in a different light:

We all make mistakes, and we need to learn to laugh at them! So, posts like these will be given a very lighthearted manner to them, thus ensuring that we are not mocking anyone, or discouraging people from doing "home-repairs". We are all here to learn, and we can benefit from others mistakes, and have a good time doing it too. I prefer to laugh with my clients, not at them when I get a busted pen. I laugh with them, because I've made the same mistakes before!

Now onto the post. :)

So, onto my workbench rolls this lovely Sailor 1911. Black in color, and with rhodium trim (a favorite classy-combo of mine). I was told by the client that the pen was originally rather scratchy and unpleasant to write with, and so he attempted some nib tuning.

When I uncapped the pen, one definitive thought came to my head - razor blade. I know the look of a nib that has "danced with the knife". It's not a pretty look either, though it does exhibit a bit of "rustic-charm". :) I do commend you all to not take a knife to your $200.00 nibs, but this man obviously has confidence, and that's a good thing!

Here's what was presented to me:

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Welcome to the Repairer's Bench!

Welcome to my new blog! I am Tyler Dahl, of Tyler Dahl Fountain Pens. I am a professional fountain pen repairman, as well as a nibmeister.

The purpose of the Repairer's Bench blog is to give you a glimpse of what you might not normally get to see - A pen professional at work. Here I will post updates about what is going on in my workshop. You'll get to see my latest repairs, as well as some great tips, and how to's. You'll also get to see some "what not to do's", as I show you some of the messy, and rather comical things that I get deal with in my job.

It's going to be a great deal of fun, so I hope you'll stay tuned and enjoy!If you've got any questions or comments, please feel free to let me know. You can leave me a comment below, or shoot me an email.

Happy reading!

Best Regards,
Tyler Dahl