When My Pen Dries Out


Nothing is more nerve wrecking then being in the middle of a drawing and having your pen dry out. Granted, the pens that I use, Sakura Microns, are relatively inexpensive and possible to find at a local craft store or online from Amazon, yet having to get out and go get more or wait a day or two for it to come in the mail, can slow down progress. Typically I buy six at a time so that I’m not buy pens too often. But every once in blue moon I get a dud; a pen that’s practically dried out when I get it or it dries out much quicker than usually.  Instead of tossing it out I got to wondering if there’s a way to refill these things. One of my pens was sacrificed to my curiosity but luckily with some permanent ink on hand that I used for stamping and a pair of needle nose pliers, I found a way to refill my micron pens and it only takes just a few drops of ink to get the pen working again. Below is a brief video clip on how I do it. If you have some microns of your own that you haven’t thrown out yet, you can try this for yourself. You’ll need:

  1. a dried out micron pen
  2. a pair of needle nose pliers
  3. some permanent black ink, which is what microns take. I used Archival Permanent and Waterproof ink from Ranger Ink or you can get in from Amazon.
  4. a steady hand to gently pull the nib from the pen barrel.

I have yet to try this with colored ink so I don’t know how it would turn out but I suspect that things wouldn’t be any different. If anyone tries it I would be interested to know. Anyhoo, check out the brief video below on how I refill my micron pens.



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Pen and ink artist inspired by Nature, Beauty, Spirit and Song.

9 thoughts on “When My Pen Dries Out”

  1. Oh gosh, that’s brilliant – you’ve figured out a way to refill them. I have one or two, they’ve not run out of ink yet (I don’t use them very often) but this gives me an idea for something else. I’ve been trying to find a fibre-tip version of a pen for ink I love but that doesn’t come in a pen… this might be the way. Well done – and thanks! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. i use rapidograph pens, which are refillable, but are pretty high maintenance. they work out for me as a motivation to use them regularly so they don’t dry out/clog up. 🙂 that’s cool that you found a way to refill your pens!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I used to use Kohl Noor Rapidograph pens but like you said, they’re high maintenance and I could never keep up with them. The quality of stippling they create was great but I was horrible with keeping them up. I switched to Rotring Rapidgraph pens that used refillable cartridges. But twice I got pens with poor nibs that I had to replace. They became more expensive than what they were worth. So I switched to Microns. The quality of stippling good but not as great compared to the Rapidograph pens since Microns are felt nibs but I don’t have the added anxiety of being them being expensive and high maintenance.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. i have the kohl noor ones. man, i do love them though–but i am always a sucker for a demanding relationship. i have just three different sizes i use & i use them for everything so that i don’t forget about them.
        i have been using a bamboo pen & a dip pen for my artwork lately, with much glee, but they would probably not work at all for you as they are terribly inconsistent.
        (pen nerd salute)

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I love dip pens, they’re so nostalgic. I tried to use them for stippling and you’re right, they are not consistent but I’ve come across artists who have figured out how to use them for stippling. I have yet to reach that level if mastery.

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