One of the things I don’t do often enough is clean my stuff. Instead, I use my stuff until it breaks and then try to use it some more.
Lately, though, I’ve been cleaning stuff, and taking pictures of it, in order to sell it.
I started with some of my oldest pens, a Pilot Vanishing Point and a Namiki Vanishing Point I got back in the mid-90’s. I used both pens enough that I actually cracked the barrels on both. I managed, though, to get a replacement barrel on one. (I apparently got the last barrel in Japan.)
One of the pens was my workhorse for many years. I used it every day and ran various colors of ink through it (well, if black and blue-black count as “various”) and even hand wrote my first “novel” with it. It cleaned out fairly quickly.
The other pen, though, was my marking pen. I filled it with Pilot Red ink and used it to ruin the days of hundreds of students (at least during exam times). In fact, in some cases, I put more marks on exams than the students did. I used that pen until it cracked and then kept using it until the converter broke when I was filling it, covering my hands in red ink. Washing my hands only changed the ink to pink.
In the past, I’ve tried soaking them in water, but after each try, I could still see the red stains on the feed of the marking pen.
Finally, I bought some pen cleaning solution and soaked the pen for a day. Lots of red ink came out. When I decided the red ink had suffered enough, I removed the nib assembly and dried it off.
Of course, the paper towel immediately got red ink spots on it. I let it dry off and, just in case, decided to try again. The result was this:
I’ll let it sit over night because, even as I write, I can see wisps of ink leaking out, despite it having sat there in the solution for four hours.
The only thing I can say is, all those students are getting the last laugh.