How to Know When it's Time for a Refill - Art-n-Fly

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December 27, 2019

Maybe you just bought a new set of our markers (thanks!) and you want to make sure they're full, or maybe you've had them for a while and it's time for a refill. We're going to tell you exactly how much they should weigh!

A full marker will weigh a little under 11 grams or 0.4 ounces without caps on, rounded up (please don't panic if your marker weighs 10.5 grams or 0.38 oz- you can expect a little bit of variation!). If you want to weigh them straight out of the box with caps on, a full marker with caps is a little under 16 grams or 0.55 oz. 

A good rule of thumb is that your marker could probably use a refill if it's 14 grams (0.5 oz) with a cap on, or 9 grams (0.31 oz) without the cap. Some people will comfortably use a marker until it's much more empty than that, but that's the weight at which it begins to feel like it's dragging and continuing to use it after this point is not great for the longevity of the nibs. 


"My markers arrived with too much ink! It's dripping into the cap!"

First question: how are you storing them? Always store your markers on their sides- otherwise the ink will gradually drain toward one side (it's not going to pour out, but they won't perform optimally). If you've shaken them and left them on their sides overnight and they still seem like they have too much ink, it shouldn't take more than a little bit of use to get them back down to a level that feels perfect (and we'll talk about how to clean the caps).

"Some of my markers don't seem to have enough ink and I just got them."

Same as above- how are you storing them? Always store markers on their sides. If you've had them upright for a while, leave them flat at least overnight and maybe even longer and you should see a difference! We're very consistent about the ink levels when we make them- sometimes the ink just needs a little help saturating the nibs after the markers travel.

"I've been using certain colors nonstop and the ink seems dried out. Are my markers empty?"

Unless you've shut yourself in your room for 2 weeks using only a couple colors, if you just bought them, that's unlikely. With a lot of use the ink in the nib can get used up before the core has had a chance to replenish it. The best course of action is the give it a shake and leave it on its side for 2 hours. If you want to speed things up, add a few drops (no more than 10 mL) of denatured alcohol and give it a good shake and they'll be back in action!

"I just bought a marker set. How do I know if one is actually dry?"

You'll know. A marker that gets dried out in transit is usually a result of a cap that got dislodged along the way or didn't get put on properly in the first place and the brush nib will be stiff as a board with no ink coming out at all! Email us with your order number and a picture- we'll send you out a replacement.

"Darn, I left a lid off myself for a month and now I've got one that's dried out. Can it be saved?"

You have a couple of options. You can try to save it by replacing the nibs (which are damaged once ink dries in them) and refilling with our colorless blender (0) ink as the pigment is still there. You could also refill with the appropriate ink color but it may be hyper-saturated as you'll have doubled the pigment to alcohol ratio. Another option that's easier and foolproof is to just buy a replacement for that marker, which we can sell you by custom order for $4.97. 

"Okay, I weighed the markers I use the most and they're 9 grams without caps. What do I do now?"

Whoa, you've been drawing a lot! If you want them to be like new again, refill them! We have a video here with exactly how to do it. Our ink refills weigh around 25 grams, so you should be able to get that much use out of them and bring them back to life 12-13 times! 

"I spilled ink all over the cap and now it can't seal and I'm worried my marker will dry out."

You're right to want to fix this; a good seal is important. But don't worry! You can soak your cap in rubbing alcohol. You can even use nail polish remover and the ink will come right off (just rinse and wipe down after soaking so you don't drip nail polish remover into your precious marker).

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