If you love writing – and writing with a stylish fountain pen most of all -- remember to keep your pens clean.
If you feel that your pen isn't writing as smoothly as it once did, wash it out:
Just as your car needs its oil changed, your fountain pen needs internal cleaning. A once a month flushing will save you a trip to the nib specialist. After flushing the ink out of the pen with water, we recommend flushing with 1 part household ammonia and 2 parts water. Fill and empty the pen three or four times to dissolve the solids accumulation.
I've never added ammonia, I just flush my piston-filler pens with water, and soak the cartridge-converters for an hour or so in plain water.
Clean, clean, clean! If you've been slack over this, don't feel bad. For years, I didn’t even know that you were supposed to flush pens out, and a old Parker… well, I won't go into the gory details, but suffice to say that ever since then I've been the Queen of Clean Fountain Pens. :-)