the problem with buying from sochrim

I was checking a new set of parshiyos today for a basic kosher lechatchillah set of tefillin I am putting together to sell. The hagoha was going really well until the last parsha, where I encountered this:

It is clear that some sort of (suspicious) mechika was made on the kuf. I bought the parsha from a socher (although I prefer working with sofrim for this exact
Reason -but I didn't have a choice really). While the socher vouches for ksav kabollah and general ehrlichkeit (don't they all), I really get bad vibes when I see a mechika like this. A Lot of scratching between a gug and regel of a kuf is not a good sign.

 On the one hand it's b'chezkas kashrus. Certainly if it was someone's personal tefillin already in use, it's not my business to be a forensic detective, and obviously I wouldn't say a word to the customer. But these are new tefillin and the customer is trusting I give him something I'm happy with...

If I was dealing with the sofer directly I'd be able to get some peace of mind by asking him for more details of what went on, which rov was consulted, how he fixed it etc.

I was wondering how others deal with this type of thing...


  1. It is very speculative detective work. If I saw this I would imagine that the Sofer did a poor job on a mechika and then rewrote on top of it... My evidence is that the entire letter is not crisp as the other letters which indicates a likelihood of it having been written on poorly scraped parchment.

    It is not only between the regel and the Gag that there is a mechika... the whole letter is compromised.

    1. The scraping is both between the regel and gug and regel and regel. There was a karov negiya bhind the kuf and I scraped it. It looks like the ink spread while writing on a poor part of klaf _- there are a few places like that on the parsha.


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