Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Aurora 88K Vintage Fountain Pen

Repairing broken piston on an Aurora 88K.

Aurora 88K Vintage Fountain Pen

Image above is the fully restored Aurora 88K. This pen when received, had first to undergo major repairs to the piston filling system by Hepworth Dixon.

The piston filling knob rotated, but the piston itself would not move within the barrel, visible through the ink level viewing window.

Removing the piston filling knob and retracting the piston assembly through the section end of barrel, it all became obvious what had happened. The hexagonal piston was broken away by approximately 5mm at the rear end. The worm screw drive was disengaged from piston, preventing any forward or back movement.

The chances of finding a replacement hexagonal piston were very slim. Drastic action had to be taken.

The Repair:

First the damaged end of piston was turned down on a lathe to remove damaged end section. With the piston now shorter, the length of the worm screw would need to be increased. The worm screw drive was cut in half, the sawn ends turned flat, both ends drilled and tapped with a 10 BA internal thread.

Careful measurement of modified piston travel determined the length of required shaft extension insert. The extension piece was turned up in brass and externally threaded both ends.

Using a thread locking compound the modified worm screw was assembled.

Operation and piston travel checked. This was also a good time to fit a new piston seal, comprising of two neoprene 'O' rings.

Piston re-assembled into barrel and secured with new brass drive pin. Piston turning knob replaced with original locking screw and screw access hole plugged. Piston travel again checked once nib section was replaced.

Overall a very pleasing restoration to what initially looked to be a more parts destined for the spares box............  It should be noted that the ink volume held in barrel when filled, has a slightly lower ink capacity due to reduced piston travel.

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