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Linda Farmer, Certified Zentangle Teacher


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Discovery! A way to re-start a clogged Micron 01 Pen

Let's discuss it!Welcome to December! I’m dropping in today because I have what I think is a great tip to share with you …

I’m pretty diligent about recapping my Sakura Micron 01 pens immediately when I’m not going to be using them for a minute or two, and storing them horizontally as recommended.

“The performance characteristics of Pigma ink require a special ink delivery system within the nib, but the trade off is that the Pigma Micron has to be handled more carefully than an ordinary ball point pen. We pack our pens full of pigment ink. Pigment ink particles are much larger than dye ink particles and therefore more susceptible to gravitational pressure. The pen should also be stored horizontally when not in use.” ~ FAQ from Sakura of America

However there are times when my Micron is too new to have dried out, but for some reason the ink stopped flowing well and the strokes become kind of spindly compared to what I’m accustomed for them to be.

I’m guessing the tube/nib has picked up microscopic fibers from my paper and become clogged.

“A Micron nib may clog from use with partially dried paint or primer, wood dust, fabric dust, starches & protections on fabric surfaces and very fibrous paper. The Micron nibs are essentially “micro size plastic tubes” which allow our pigment ink formula to easily flow from the barrel to the paper. When any foreign matter clogs these tubes, the Pigma ink flow is blocked.” ~ FAQ from Sakura of America

Recently I stumbled across a way to restart the ink flowing well, and I’m sharing in case it helps you too.

Linda’s Micron Fix

StazOn-Stamp-CleanerI happened to have a bottle of Tsukineko’s StazOn All-Purpose Stamp Cleaner sitting on my table, and a light went off in my head:

If it cleans permanent ink from clear and rubber stamps, I wonder ….

So I put the smallest dab (maybe 1/4 tsp, not much!) of StazOn on my craft mat then lightly scribbled my recalcitrant pen in circles in the little puddle. Lo and behold, after a few scribbles and wiping the nib dry the ink began to flow well again.

This is no scientific experiment but it worked for me and maybe it will work for you too. No guarantees, use at your own risk and all that, but something worth trying if you have some StazOn Cleaner handy.

And if your pens have actually run out, well it’s time to get new ones instead of trying to bring back the dead! 😉

BTW, Sakura of America’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page is a wealth of helpful and useful information. I highly recommend you check it out if you have questions or concerns about any of their products including Pigma Microns, Gelly Rolls, Identi-Pens, Permapaques, Koi …

For future reference, this article is filed on the TUTORIALS tab.

Thanks for your time, see you again tomorrow with another fun new tangle …


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15 comments to Discovery! A way to re-start a clogged Micron 01 Pen

  • Jody Genovese

    Thank you Linda! I am so trying this. Hope you had a happy thanksgiving.

  • Sue CZT22

    Thanks for the tip!

  • Lianne

    Thank you Linda for sharing this ‘light bulb’ moment with us.

  • LaJuania

    Linda, thank you for sharing this tip. I feel like I should invest in cleaner to have on hand.

  • Christine

    I was so excited to read this tip because I knew I had a bottle of StazOn cleaner with my stamping stuff. I now have 5 micron pens that are working cleanly again!

  • Anne T Sargent, CZT

    The Tsukinino (sp?) cleaning fluid is no longer available on Amazon or anywhere else I have looked. Do you have an alternate suggestion? I love all that you do with this website and have supported it with donation and recommendation.

    • Linda Farmer, CZT

      Hi Anne, I just did a Google search for StazOn Cleaner and found many sources with it in stock. Thanks so much for your support, it is most appreciated. 🙂

  • Jenn Brayton

    Cannot find the cleaner anywhere …

    I’m in Canada where so far my time spent looking for Stazon cleaner on Canadian sites has turned up nothing. Are there any other brands you would suggest for cleaning off the pen tips? Or a DIY tip perhaps? I’m looking for a Canadian site as cross border shopping has ground to a halt with lost packages or taking 2 months. I’m very rural so online shopping is my norm haahaa

    And as an aside, I love my copy of the 2020 Tangle Guide and it’s my go-to reference book 🙂

    • Linda Farmer, CZT

      I’ve looked at the bottle and there’s zero clue what StazOn is made of. Sorry I can’t help with an alternative 🙁 If you know any stampers in your area, you could ask what they use. That’s my best shot but maybe someone else might have a suggestion …

  • Diana

    I don’t have Stayzon but I used one drop of glycerin, one drop of baby shampoo and a few drops of water and it worked great to revive a 0.5 micron that had gotten blocked up after using it over acrylic. I just googled “diy stamp cleaner” and found a recipe that was 1 tablespoon glycerin, 2 tablespoons baby shampoo and 7 ounces of water. I just didn’t need that much so just estimated with the drops.

  • Lynn Starnes

    WOW – very helpful tip! I was about to toss several dried and skipping Micros – now they work like new!!!

  • Martha

    Thank you for the tip on the microns! So frustrating when an almost new pen stops flowing!

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