Waterman Pen Identification

Waterman Pen replacement parts


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Introduction

The boxed lever design Waterman created (U.S. Patent No 1, 197, 360) to circumvent Walter Sheaffer’s 1908 lever-filler patent (U.S. Patent No 896, 861) is clever, functional, and attractive, but it has a weakness: the area of the lever box through which the lever’s pivot pin passes is unfortunately weak, and operating the lever by force when there is an ossified sac in the pen can easily bend the lever box upward and break it at the weak point. (See the photograph above, illustrating a 52 with a broken lever box.) The problem of replacement is complicated by the fact that the lever box assembly was not designed to be replaceable.

This article explains how to remove and replace a broken lever box. While it is possible to adapt a similar lever box, such as one from a 521∕2 to fit a 52, it is best to have an exact match. But because the ideal is not alway possible, I will touch on the modification necessary to handle the example case given in the previous sentence.

Making a tool, step 2Tools Required

  • Heavy-duty 5" (12.5 cm) scissors for cutting sheet brass (not your spouse’s best embroidery or fly-tying scissors!)
  • Soldering iron for electronics, preferably with 700° F (375° C) tip
  • Soldering “third hand, ” a pedestal with alligator clips on pivots at the ends of an adjustable arm (see photos below)
  • 1∕8" (3 mm) screwdriver
  • Chain-nose jeweler’s pliers
  • Straight pointed heavy-duty dental pick
  • Crescent-shaped dental scaler
  • Bench block or similar metal object (see photo below)
  • Tool for bending lever box tab inside the barrel (see below, )
  • Rotary tool (Dremel or equivalent) with cutoff wheel, for making the tab bender (see text)
  • Alligator forceps

Making a tool, step 3If replacing a box with one from a pen with a different barrel diameter, you will also need:

  • Flat needle file
  • X-acto knife with new No 11 blade
  • Hobbyist’s or jeweler’s drill press
  • No 69 (0.0292"/0.75 mm) twist drill
  • Drill vise (see text)

Parts Required

  • One Waterman pen with a broken lever box
  • One unbroken lever box assembly

Supplies Required

  • 400- or 600-grit sandpaper
  • 60/40 tin/lead rosin-core electronic solder
  • Tinner’s fluid (acid soldering flux in liquid form)
  • Cotton swab
  • 2000-grit (4µ) wet/dry sandpaper
  • Small piece of 0.010" (0.25 mm) sheet or strip brass at least 1/16" (1.6 mm) wide
  • Medium-duty wire coat hanger for the tab bender; wire diameter 0.098" (2.5 mm)
  • 0.028" (0.71 mm) brass wire to make a new pivot pin (if needed)

Making a Tab Bender

Waterman’s factory workers used specially modified pliers to bend the tabs of their lever boxes. You will have to make a substitute tool. The simplest form of this tool is a length of coat hanger wire with its end bent and ground to shape. Illustrated below are the instructions for making it. Ideally, your rotary tool should have a diamond-coated metal cutoff wheel (approximately 150 grit), but you can stack three of the 0.025" silicon carbide wheels that Dremel sells to make a stronger cutter.

  1. Cut about 6" (15.25 cm) of coat hanger wire and bend one end completely double. This will require hammering on an anvil in order to close the bend sufficiently.
Finished tool Lever box and pressure bar Pushing the tab Bending the tab back


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