Care and Feeding of your new pen, ring or other unique handcrafted item
Care and Feeding of Your
Beautiful Handmade Items
CARING FOR YOUR HANDMADE PEN
With proper care, your new pen can last a long time and provide you much enjoyment. Your handmade pen is just like any other quality instrument, it needs occasional cleaning and maintenance. The oils from our hands eat at the finishes on the pen body and hardware. Dirt and other abrasives come into constant contact with the pen, which can lightly scratch the surfaces of the pen. These fine scratches are what causes a pen to become duller over time.
Since a Handcrafted Pen is a delicate writing instrument, it should be kept out of extreme environments. Do not leave your pen in the car during the summer when it can get very hot or in the winter when it can get very cold. These temperature changes can cause the ink to dry out prematurely, cause the wood, acrylic, resin, or other body material to expand or shrink, and potentially cause finish problems. Some woods (Pink Ivory, Ebony, Snakewood and other exotic burls) are very susceptible to changes in temperature and humidity. Some of the prettiest most exotic and expensive woods tend to expand and contract more than others causing them to crack. I season these woods for at least 6 months before using. I cannot guarantee any wood not to crack.
Please take care not to drop your pen as the materials can chip or break, especially TruStone pens made with real stone.
The good news, it isn't hard to keep your pen looking and working like new.
Treat your pen with respect and it will last a long time.
Your pen is made to be used, not stored away in a drawer. Enjoy your pen. Treasure your pen. This is especially true for rollerball and fountain pens, whose ink will dry out over time if not used. By using your pen regularly, you will continue to enjoy years of use. Please note that fountain pens should generally not be shared with others, as the nib wears according to your personal pattern and style of writing.
- DO NOT leave your pen in the car. The temperature extremes experienced in a vehicle can damage or destroy your writing instrument. Treat it as you would any fine, delicate instrument. Although your pen can withstand a lifetime of use it will not tolerate abuse.
- Keep your pen out of direct sunlight, as the UV radiation will compromise the quality of the finish and prematurely age and oxidize the wood. It will also yellow any clear resin pen over time.
- DO NOT use any cleaners with abrasives on any part of your new writing instrument. The fluids and/or abrasives will damage the fine finish and the metal plating. Also Do Not use car wax on your pen, as it contains abrasives.
- DO keep your fine pen from extremes of heat and cold. Both are enemies of wood, and extreme climate changes will affect your pen. Some woods are very temperature sensitive and may split or develop cracks from extremes of heat and cold. Protect it and it will deliver years of writing pleasure for you.
- Keep your pen in a safe place to protect it and it will deliver years of service. It is recommended you store it in a pen case or box, or in the sleeve that was supplied when you purchased the pen. If you store it in a drawer, pocket, or purse unprotected you risk damaging the wood, acrylic, or hardware. Although your new pen can withstand a lifetime of use it will not survive abuse.
- For your capped writing instrument, it is recommended that the pen be stored with the cap securely over the nib while the pen is not in use.
- The inks used are susceptible to drying out if left exposed for extended periods of time.
CLEANING (BALLPOINT AND ROLLERBALL)
If your pen is made of TruStone, Resins, or Acrylics, then to clean your pen (and remove any fine scratches) you only need to use a fine automotive or plastic polish. Rub a little on the pen, let it haze over and polish with a fine cloth. It's that simple.
If your pen is made of wood, you have two choices based on the finish. Natural (friction polish) or CA protected.
- A pen with a FRICTION POLISH OR NATURAL FINISH all you need to use is a good wood furniture paste wax. This will keep the shine looking nice and remove fine scratches as well. Treat the pen like you would a piece of furniture, as it has the same type of finish, care and handling instructions.
- If you wood pen has a CA OR CLEAR TOPCOAT (looks like the wood is under glass), you can use a fine plastic polish, or automotive polish or Renaissance Wax to keep it in good condition.
FOUNTAIN PEN CARE:
- HOLDING A FOUNTAIN PEN – Writing with a fountain pen is a little different from the ballpoint experience. You need to customize your pen’s nib. Before you put ink in your pen, hold the pen as you normally would and “write on” a piece of brown wrapping paper. This will wear the end of the nib to conform to the angle that you normally hold your pen. Do this for several minutes until the feel is smooth and comfortable. DO NOT apply too much pressure as the weight of the pen should be sufficient.
- USING AN INK CARTRIDGE – Select your ink with care. Insert the ink cartridge nipple end onto the nib assembly and push on firmly. Scribble with the pen nib to start the ink flowing. You may have to gently squeeze the cartridge to start the ink flowing. When the written lines fill completely, you are ready to use your pen. Don’t be impatient; this may take a minute or two for the ink to begin to flow.
- USING A CONVERTER – If you prefer to use bottled ink rather than pre-filled cartridges most pen manufacturers sell a converter which resembles a refillable ink cartridge. They are usually fitted in the same way as fitting a new cartridge to your pen.
- CHOOSING INK – Be sure to use only high-quality ink made for fountain pens. DO NOT use calligraphy ink as it will damage your feed.
- CLEANING YOUR FOUNTAIN PEN – Remove the cartridge or converter and rinse the nib under tepid water. It may be necessary to soak the nib in some cases if the nib feed is severely clogged. DO NOT use hot water or chemicals as this will damage the feed. IMPORTANT – Please ensure that water does not come into contact with any woodwork.
Over time, your pen will run low or out of ink. Replacing the ink is straightforward. If it is a ballpoint pen, then remove the old ballpoint cartridge and replace it with a new one. If it is a rollerball pen, then replace the ink cartridge. Fountain pens can either have a cartridge or can be manually refilled.
With so many different styles of pens unfortunately there is not one way to get to the cartridge. Our ballpoint pens take either Parker or Cross refills while the rollerballs all take a Schmidt standard refills. These are available at any office supply store. If in doubt feel free to send us a note.
Rollerball pen cartridges can usually be taken out by unscrewing the front tip of the pen…. In most cases.
Ballpoint fall into two different styles. Those that are two-piece pens can usually be accessed by pulling the 2 halves of the pen apart and then unscrewing the cartridge. If they are one piece or have a singe pen tube most can be accessed by unscrewing the tip. The spring and cartridge will come our… just make sure you save the spring. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
CARE INSTRUCTIONS FOR YOUR HAND-MADE RING
Each piece of personalized jewelry is a precious piece, and it has to be treated that way. All the jewelry, even the one that is the most precious, needs the necessary care.
For keeping the jewelry, you own looking good, new and lustrous, below are some shared essential instructions that need to be kept in mind, regardless of the metal type
This is regardless of the age of the jewelry. Follow the steps and you would always have a new shiny set for the special occasion from your jewelry box.
BE SMART ABOUT SAFEKEEPING.
Storing your personalized jewelry properly would do wonders for keeping it looking new at all times. It is vital to keep your rings in a separate box or pack from the other ones before putting them in the storage area together. This is to avoid any tangling up with the other pieces or to ding up with due to a lot of movement.
It is a great idea to have a jewelry box that has a soft felt lining. But in this, you would still have to make sure that the items are kept separately and properly without allowing them to mix and tangle up. Moreover, you can also have an even line in a simple shoe-box made with fabric material to store the jewelry in it safe and nested.
NO JEWELRY IN THE TUB.
The shampoos and the soaps that you use for your body might be a great idea to use on the jewelry to have them smelling fresh and squeaky clean in no time. But that would create a bad hole in your pocket as the personalized jewelry can get spoiled due to the chemicals that are in the shampoos and the soaps.
Furthermore, wearing the jewelry and then having a bath just to make them look new as you clean both yourself and the piece, would just spoil the look if the item. Spending too much of time in the shower with the jewelry would cause a film to form over the precious metal that makes the jewelry. This would also make the sheen dull and diminish the gorgeous shine that it had before this disaster.
POOLS & JEWELRY DO NOT MIX.
Each person, during the summer season, love a refreshing dip in the swimming pool due to the heat and the sweating, while some just love it in the jacuzzis. But these jacuzzis and pools are filled with a lot of chlorine that can discolor your jewelry if it is in the water for a very long time. So, to play safely, in this case, it is better to remove all of the jewelry pieces that you wear before getting into the pool or jacuzzis. Just something to think about.CLEANING THE HOUSE OR SOMETHING ELSE, TAKE THE JEWELRY OFF!
If you are washing something or cleaning off the makeup from your face, it is advised to remove your jewelry before doing anything. This is because things like the hairspray, washing powder, lotions, and many cosmetics have chemicals in it that can cause massive damage to the jewelry. So, it is better to remove all of these things and then do what you need to with the chemicals. This would save the exposure of the jewelry to the chemicals.MAKEUP FIRST, THEN ACCESSORIES.
As mentioned in the point above, all the cosmetics and things like the hairspray and lotions have a lot of chemicals in them that can tarnish and cause harm to the jewelry. Hence, to keep the customized piece properly so that it would always look the best and new, it is better to keep them away from the harms like this. Hence, first always put your makeup on and get ready before you wear any accessories.
SOME OTHER IMPORTANT POINTS:
- Always use a clean cloth or cotton to clean your jewelry.
- Store the jewelry in a dark, dry and cool place.
- Keep the jewelry in separate boxes or bags to avoid them from getting scratches.
NON-WOOD ITEMS (bottle stoppers, seam rippers, letter opens):
This is the same process as what we used for our non-wood pens. The use of an automotive paste wax or other nonsolvent based wax and a soft cloth is what you need here.
If your item is made of wood, you have two choices based on the finish. Natural (friction polish) or CA protected as noted above in the Pen section. I will put those here for your reference.
- An item with a FRICTION POLISH OR NATURAL FINISH all you need to use is a good wood furniture paste wax. This will keep the shine looking nice and remove fine scratches as well. Treat the item like you would a piece of furniture, as it has the same type of finish, care and handling instructions.
- If you wood item has a CA OR CLEAR TOPCOAT (looks like the wood is under glass), you can use a fine plastic polish, or automotive polish or Renaissance Wax to keep it in good condition.