Snorkel Repair

Repair of the Snorkel Pen

Use these instructions with the attached diagram using the nomenclature of Snorkel Pen Parts from a 1961 Sheaffer document.  These instructions are based on the authorized Sheaffer repair method from that period. Additional comments have been added to make the procedure more clear or to highlight a method perhaps no longer seen as necessary in the repair of this pen.

Supplies needed for this repair:


  1. Extend the plunger tube and unscrew the gripping section which removes the entire writing unit. Dry heat may be necessary to remove the barrel.

  2. Remove the sac protector tube assembly by pulling it out of the gripping section assembly.

  3. Unscrew the point unit from the gripping section.

  4. Remove the point holder gasket from the point end of the gripping section and dispose.

  5. Remove propelling spring by turning barrel on end and pumping plunger tube.

  6. Grasp filler tube near sac protector bushing rocking back and forth gently and at the same time pulling out.  CAUTION - be certain to handle the filler tube with extreme care as damage to this part will cause malfunction of the pen.  After removing filler tube, screw a #4 screw into the hole, grasp by a pliers and pull out sac protector bushing and old sac. Remove old sac cleaning the smaller end of the bushing to receive new sac.  Place small amounts of shellac on narrow portion and install new sac. (trim to fit) and allow to dry for at least one hour as you continue the process. Note some sac protector tubes are crimped and require use of a small eyeglasses style screwdriver to open the crimped sections prior to removal of the sac protector bushing.

  7. With long shank screwdriver (straight blade), remove plunger tube by turning screw which holds the plunger knob on the threaded plunger tube. Hold the plunger knob and turn the screwdriver to prevent breaking the knob. Gasket seated atop plunger tube may or may not come out. Clean outside of plunger tube to remove any caked on material.

  8. Remove compression gasket (“O” ring) using a pointed instrument being careful not to damage the groove in which it sets, and clean inside of barrel. Dispose of the old O ring.

  9. Replace compression gasket (“O” ring).  Lubricate very lightly with silicone grease.

  10. Replace threaded plunger tube in barrel.  Place screw on long shank screwdriver, inserting into and through the plunger tube.  If necessary to replace gasket that may have fallen out in step 7, place atop screw.  Note this gasket does not usually need to be replaced. Apply a small amount of silicone grease inside of plunger knob and tighten screw into plunger knob.

  11. Enlarge the end coil of the propelling spring and place the spring, enlarged coil first, around the threaded plunger tube in the barrel.

  12. Place the end of the sac protector assembly containing the rubber bushing with new sac attached into water at least 180 degrees F so that the water completely covers the four splines but not the sac/bushing joint. Hold the assembly in this position for approximately two minutes to allow the rubber bushing to be heated, and then insert the filler tube into the sac protector assembly busing.  Dry the assembly thoroughly with a cloth. Note - this step is not often necessary. Dry heat may be enough to warm up the bushing to insert into the sac protector tube.

  13. Seat point holder gasket in the point end of gripping section.

  14. Screw nib unit into gripping section.  Sealing compound is not needed as the point holder gasket completes the seal.

  15. Lubricate the filler tube with silicone grease and insert through the hole in the point holder gasket.  Make sure the sac protector tube assembly is assembled with the large grove (present on the older snorkel models only) lined up correctly with the large groove slot in the gripping section.  It is very important that the protector tube be properly fitted in the gripping section and move back and forth easily requiring little force.

  16. Place a small amount of section sealant on threads of gripping section and screw the writing unit into the end of the barrel with the plunger extended.

  17. Depress the plunger and retract filler tube by turning to the right.  Check the position of the filler tube as follows:

    • The filler tube should be turned so that its slope meets the slope of the feed (Triumph points).  The fissure of the filler tube should line up with the fissure in the feed.  If it does not align correctly, extend the filler tube and realign.

    • The slope of the filler tube should be flush with the contour of the feed: neither extended or recessed.  If it is not flush, remove the barrel and adjust the filler tube length.  Do this by twisting tube sideways to loosen and then pull or push.


Sheaffer Snorkel Part ID