Editor’s Note: This question was originally posted as a comment below the tip “Make Dried Up Ballpoint Pens Write Again”

Some years ago, everyone would have known what a nib is. There were metal pen points that fitted into a holder and were dipped in a bottle of ink. One could write several lines before needing to dip the pen again. They were a huge improvement over the quill (feather) pen, which I believe was their immediate predecessor. I used a nib pen a few times before the ballpoint pen was invented in about 1946 when I was a freshman in high school.

My question is, does anyone know of another way to revive ballpoint pens? Years ago I read in a column of helpful hints that if one would stand the pen, point down, in a certain fluid, it would revive and be good for several more months. The fluid mentioned was one that artists use, but I have no idea now what that might be. I tried rubbing alcohol and it didn’t really work. I must have two dozen dried-out ballpoints and would darly love to revive them. Can anyone help?