A fountain pen is nothing but a writing tool that helps you to express your thoughts on paper. But this is not everything to say about it. This century-old simple device still has its own appeal. In this advanced ballpoint pen era, the users of fountain pen feel dignity, pride, and it shows their excellent sense of art when they use to draw out their fountain pen from the pocket.
As time changes, the fountain pen also maintains its compatibility by following the time and needs. Therefore, today you can find a different system in a fountain pen for your convenience. A converter is certainly one of them that is commonly seen in almost every fountain pen.
What is A Converter?
Commonly there are two sections of a fountain pen-one is the barrel and the other is the nib section. If you see you’ll find inside the barrel a small cylindrical device inside the barrel which helps you to fill your fountain pen with ink from an ink bottle. This is called a converter– a very useful part of a fountain pen.
The Benefits of A Converter
A converter is such a part that works like a makeshift cartridge and allows a fountain pen to draw the ink through the nib from the bottle easily. Besides, your writing job may not be limited to a single color of ink. There several occasions when you need to use a different color of ink and for that purpose, you have to refill your pen with different inks. In such cases, a converter always helps you to change the ink quite convincingly without mixing up two different colors. Moreover, having a converter makes the cleaning of your fountain pen easier.
Types of Converter
There are different types of the converter are seen installed with a fountain pen and each of them has their own technique to work differently. Here they are-
Piston Type Converter
This type of converter is perhaps the most common one and is extensively seen in most of the brands of the fountain pen. Though this type of converter avails in different shapes and sizes but all of them work in the same way. You’ll find a knob at the end of the converter which can draw the ink from the bottle into the pen.
How it Works: Firstly, the converter is inserted into the pen grip. And then you have to submerge the whole nib section into the ink. After that, the converter knob is to be turned to make the piston inside the converter lower. This allows the air expelled from the inside. Now, turn the knob in the opposite direction and this can raise the piston which lets the ink draw into the pen. Repeat the process 3-4 times to make sure the converter is filled with ink.
Squeeze converter is not commonly used as the piston in these days. This comes with a bladder which can be squeezed to expel the air and then released to draw the ink inside.
How it Works: To use the squeeze converter, you have to push it inside the grip section of your fountain pen. Then you need to dip the whole nib section into the ink bottle. Next, the sac is to be squeezed to expel the air from inside, and immediately but slowly you have to release it so that the ink can be drawn inside the converter. You need to repeat the process a couple of times so that the converter can be filled with ink.
Push Button Converter
This is a kind of converter that is assembled with the backside of the fountain pen and a gentle press and release can do the job. Sounds easy? Yeah. Moreover, it can hold a lot of ink at a time though it is least popular than others. Why? Perhaps, as it is not easy to clean.
How it Works: Initially, like the other two kinds of converter, here also you need to do the same things. But when you dip the nib section into the ink, you have to press and release the button and the air expels and ink fills simultaneously. You have to follow the process 3-4 times until the converter is filled with ink.
In every case, when the filling is done, you have to reassemble the parts and rinse the grip section with tissue paper so that the spilled ink could not leave a mark on your clothes.
Some Important Tips
- If you need to replace the converter, always buy the one that fits tightly with your pen. Even if you have the right one, you need to put a bit of force to install it. Don’t worry this thing could happen in every case.
- While filling, if you find that the converter is not drawing ink, don’t get panicked this happens only when the converter is not inserted properly with the grip section. Even if the nib section is not dipped properly, you may face the same problem.
- Sometimes you can see the ink is dripping out from the nib after being filled. This is a common problem and you have to wrap tissue paper on the nib to soak up the ink to retain the nib in proper condition.
At the end of this article, all I can say that now you have got enough idea about the converter, its varieties, and the way it works. Hope, this will help you to maintain your favorite fountain pen properly. Have a nice time!