August 10, 2012 § Leave a comment
After receiving my wonderful delivery of ink from CultPens the fun could really begin. Time to carefully transfer the bottled ink to my primed and ready empty cross cartridge.
I started off by making sure that my 2ml syringe was clean and dry. Then I opened the Diamine Blue Sapphire bottle and dipped the needle of the syringe in to the ink. Pulling on the plunger brought ink up in to the syringe. From this part on I needed my glasses as I wanted to ensure that I actually was putting the needle of the syringe in to the empty cartridge and not about to cover me or my table in Blue Sapphire ink! I pushed the plunger just until I saw that the cartridge was nearly full. I then clicked the filled cartridge into the cross fountain pen and proceed to screw all the parts back together too.
Taking out my trusted Spiderman notebook I began testing the Cross pen to have it produce the ink correctly. It took a few minutes until it started to produce a watery pale blue ink though this may be because I may not have let the Cross Fountain pen dry out properly. After a few more writing attempts, the watery pale blue was replaced my a much stronger blue until it was producing the correct Blue Sapphire colour.
Overall I found this experience to be very enjoyable. I think a big factor to attempting this is to just be patience. Everyone should give this ago at least once and now that I feel comfortable doing this I can’t wait to buy some more wonderful ink colours for my Cross which has received a new lease of life!
August 7, 2012 § Leave a comment
Lets start at the beginning. Approximately four years ago my then fiancé now wife bought me a Cross fountain pen for Christmas. During this time, I have loved using this pen but there has always been a slight issue with it – the quality of the ink that is used for the cross branded cartridges. I find the ink quality to be inconsistant and it seems to cause blank spots in my writing.
I thought that I would just have to put up with this without any solution or work around, until a few months ago. I was listening The Pen Addict podcast and their resident expert (Mr Brad Dowdy) was talking about a recent purchase of his (A pilot Vanishing Point). He had discussed that there were people who had been using used cartridges that they refilled with bottle ink using a syringe.
This got me thinking, could I do the same with my Cross branded cartridges? Well I thought I should at least try! A visit to my favourite site (www.cultpens.com) presented me with a wealth of brands and colours of bottled ink. After getting a second opinion from my wife, I settled and ordered the following two bottles of ink – Diamine Raw Sienna and Sapphire Blue 80ml bottles. I knew I would use the Sapphire Blue for this test. Now that they had been ordered it was time to clean the Cross fountain pen and two used cartridges I had saved.
To clean the cartridges I used luke-warm water and a 2ml syringe but as I got started I noticed that both cartridges had what I can only describe as “Ink Grit” in them. This could explain why the fountain pen seemed to randomly stop writing. While cleaning and flushing the ink out, I also notice more of this “Ink Grit” coming out of the fountain pen. It took roughly 20-30 minutes to clean the pen and cartridges and allowed to dry naturally in the airing cupboard. Now the stage was set for the arrival of the new bottled ink.
This concludes part one of this two part series. The next update will explain how I faired with transferring the ink from the bottle to the empty cartridge. Wish me luck!