The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Why do ball point pens dry out quicker when the end is exposed?  (Read 4210 times)

Offline thedoc

  • Forum Admin
  • Administrator
  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 511
  • Thanked: 12 times
    • View Profile
David Skytte asked the Naked Scientists:
How come that a pen seems to dry out faster when you leave it out rather than clicking it back behind its protective hood or putting the cap back on? Now, if it was an airtight fit I could understand it, but on most (cheap) pens the ball point is still exposed to air.

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 14/07/2012 08:30:02 by _system »


Offline David Cooper

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1505
    • View Profile
Reduced air movement past it, perhaps - it may take longer for the ink to solidify and jam the ball, thereby giving you more time to use it again before it goes wrong.

Offline chris

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 5339
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • The Naked Scientist
    • View Profile
    • The Naked Scientists
I think it's because the tip is less prone to becoming dust-coated when the tip is covered. The dust soaks up the ink, drying the tip more and also getting jammed into the roller-ball, so it can't move round properly and re-ink itself; this makes the pen "dry up".



  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 686
    • View Profile
huh? mine dont but when they do a touch of flame works best

The Naked Scientists Forum


SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums