Saturday, July 12, 2014

Neutering Ballpoint Pens

Two winters ago, I got the bright idea to take my dead ballpoint pens and pull the balls out of them for the heck of it.

I took pliers, pinched, and just pulled them right out.  I think I should have covered the pliers with tape or something because some of the balls ended up being a bit chewed up.  I might have thrown a few away but ended up with twenty balls of varying size.  I'm not sure what I'll do with these down the road.

The most interesting part was that the Papermate Erasermate pens were under pressure.  If I remember correctly, I de-balled two of these on that day.  The ink kept slowly coming out of the opening that the ball left and it would not stop.  I thought this made sense because every time I'd opened these pens when they were still working, there would be a big drop of ink on the end.  Also, these pens clearly still had ink; I'm not sure why none would come out when the ball was still in there.  They were probably clogged or something.

This is what I ended up with.  I didn't try to apply this ink to another surface because every time I play with pen ink, it ends up getting all over me.  I actually know the exact outfit I was wearing that day because there are a few small ink stains on the shirt and pants that are still there.  Anyway, I think I just poked at the ink blob and scratched it around a little bit before throwing it away.

Fun fact: This resulted in the url name for this blog.  I was telling a friend about this last winter "So once I was pulling the balls out of my pens for fun and..." and another overheard and said "HAHAHA sh*t Jay does for fun!"  Thanks, Colleen!