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The Smell Of Ink.


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#61 art8283

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Posted 08 September 2010 - 03:39

PR Velvet Black - no smell
PR Chocolat - very slight amonia
MB Mystery Black - no smell
MB Blue - no smell
Herbin Eclat De Saphir - very, very faint chemical smell

Now it's time to smell the roses!

#62 777

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 14:53

Private Reserve Sherwood Green smells like deadly poison! No joke. That stuff stinks! I can set the bottle open on my desk, walk a few feet away and still smell the reek of it. Unfortunate, cause it's a lovely color...

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#63 FOX

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 15:05

The horrible smell of the blue black ink we had to use at school in the 50s has put me off smelling ink for life! :(


This brings up an interesting thing about why any of these inks (or anything else) can smell good to one person, and not to another.

It's not just about scents like flowers, which most might find pleasant, and scents like an outhouse, that many might find unpleasant.

It also has to do with any experiences in your life that involved those smells.

For instance, the smells of soldering in electronics may put most people off, but if you have fond memories of a favorite uncle, who's electronic repair shop you used to visit as a child, then anytime you smell solder, it is a scent you are very fond of, for that reason.

Just as many may really enjoy the smells and odors of a "barnyard" or "horse apples" on a road, because it brings you back to another place and time.

So, is it the particular inks that smell good or bad to you, just based on the chemical composition of them that you have no prior memories or life experiences concerning them, or does that particular ink smell good to you because it reminds you of the smell of a grandfather's desk or den, or bad to you because it reminds you of school?

:happyberet:

Edited by FOX, 14 September 2010 - 15:05.


#64 sallywally

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 16:20

I have two Reforms full of Waterman's Washable Blue: the 1745 smells of it so strongly that I can smell it when it's in my shirt pocket with the cap on, but in the 110 it's almost undetectable. It also varies in intensity over a range of other pens where I have it loaded, but the 1745 takes the biscuit. I suppose it's due to feed structure.

Reading back through this thread, I suddenly realized the Bexley hasn't had any ink in it that hasn't been in my other pens, so the issue is actually with the pen more than the ink. :eureka: I am going to send it out for some nib work and maybe the nibmeister can solve the problem. I love the pen!!!
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#65 KCat

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Posted 14 September 2010 - 17:14

I'm sorry karinh can't tolerate the Waterman smell. I loved it so much I saved a small amount in a bottle for a long time just for that little nostalgic moment. Not like I was huffing, just the occasional "ah yes, that's what real waterman ink used to smell like."

Penman Emerald is the ink I have the most trouble with even though I absolutely adore the ink. It has even more phenol in it (perhaps because my bottles are quite old and concentrated). I dilute it for several reasons but one is to reduce the "outgassing" that can go on for several days after filling a pen. My husband walked into our office one day and did a step back. He wasn't sure what sort of chemical spill had occurred. I had filled the pen recently and just uncapped it to write - even though I filled it in a different room earlier in the day. :P

Still, the properties of the ink are such that I will tolerate that scent happily.

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#66 79spitfire

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 03:28

Noodler's Kung Te-cheng has an odd chemical smell, but I kinda like it..

Got some Dykem markers today for marking engine parts (oily surfaces) don't get too close to these for too long, or you'll wake up in an alleyway with a new tattoo... in another country.. WWWEEEE!

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#67 lapis

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 09:28

It also has to do with any experiences in your life that involved those smells.
:happyberet:

I'll buy that! Why I still remember the time when I was a kid and they finally paved the road in front of our house. That smell comes back when I open my bottle of blue-black Jentle Ink. I think that the colour of the pavement was also the same, especially when the sun was shining. Could that be the reason why I like that ink so much? B)

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#68 jason808

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 17:19

Waterman inks always remind me of glazed doughnuts.

#69 lws

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Posted 03 October 2010 - 13:31

I associate the smell of (modern) Quink with my first set of fountain pens, because it's the first ink I ever had in bottles. ;)

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#70 Groat

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 00:32

I had to raise this topic from the dead after filling my pen with Edelstein Sapphire this evening. It's got a pleasant sweet smell from the bottle and every time I uncap the pen. I found this interesting, because my Edelstein Mandarin is neutral and has almost no smell. I'd say that about half of my inks have no smell to them. Noodler's Lexington Gray has a faint smell, as does my bottle of Waterman Black. Neither of those inks have an odor that is noticeable when uncapping a pen though.

#71 tonybelding

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 01:22

I don't much care for the smell of Noodler's bulletproof or eternal inks--which I think have a strong, head-ache-inducing odor of sharpie markers.


I've heard other people talk about this, but I can't perceive it. I get little or no odor from most Noodler's inks, including the cellulose-reactive ones such as Noodler's Black, Heart of Darkness, Violet Vote, #41 Brown, Luxury Blue. . .

I got no smell from Legal Lapis at first, but one of my bottles developed an ammonia smell after a while. I suspect some fungicide in it might have deteriorated with time.

Texas Blue Bonnet has a distinct chemical smell, and Baystate Blue has a strong chemical smell.

#72 ravantra

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 03:45

I love the smell of ink in the morning. Smells like victory.


I love the smell of Noodler's Dragon's Napalm in the morning! :thumbup:
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#73 ravantra

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 03:50

I had wondered about what the smell was when I wrote with my TWSBI and Noodler's Zhivago. I'm glad it's not my imagination. It's not a totally unpleasant smell ... excuse while I go ink sniff my self into a coma ... :blink:
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#74 cocojj

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 08:32

Private Reserve Sherwood Green smells like deadly poison! No joke. That stuff stinks! I can set the bottle open on my desk, walk a few feet away and still smell the reek of it. Unfortunate, cause it's a lovely color...

I like the smell of Sherwood Green! Most of my inks don't have very noticeable smell (unless you really sniff them, that is) but this one is definitely noticeable. Baystate Blue also has a strong smell but I don't like the odor. :(

Edited by cocojj, 11 February 2011 - 08:55.


#75 Yoda4561

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 13:33


I don't much care for the smell of Noodler's bulletproof or eternal inks--which I think have a strong, head-ache-inducing odor of sharpie markers.


I've heard other people talk about this, but I can't perceive it. I get little or no odor from most Noodler's inks, including the cellulose-reactive ones such as Noodler's Black, Heart of Darkness, Violet Vote, #41 Brown, Luxury Blue. . .

I got no smell from Legal Lapis at first, but one of my bottles developed an ammonia smell after a while. I suspect some fungicide in it might have deteriorated with time.

Texas Blue Bonnet has a distinct chemical smell, and Baystate Blue has a strong chemical smell.



There's different smelling formulations that Noodler's seems to use. #41, all of the blacks, Golden Brown, Black swan, Green gator, Kingfisher, Nikita, Lexington, Burma Road Brown, Fox red, Hunter Green, and Polar Blue, I've had samples or full bottles of all of these and they have that light, semi-citrus or melon smell. They also (with the exception of Green gator) wash off a surface after they've fully dried with plain water. Baystate Blue I find smells a little different, but not by much, and also washes off non-porous (glass) surfaces with just plain water after it's dried. This ink smell I find very nice and completely inoffensive.

Two inks I've tried, Kung te Cheng, and Bad Blue Heron, have a strong, very distinct "not-like a sharpie but chemical-ish in the same fashion" smell. I'm intimately familiar with the smell of a sharpie marker from my time as an electrician and they're not the same. I previously thought that KTC was the only ink that used this chemistry but it seems a few others in the lineup do as well. These inks with the strong odor will dry on a surface, and not be able to be flushed with pure water even after days of soaking. It's not alcohol or a distilled petroleum solvent base as sharpies are, as those chemicals won't touch KTC or Blue Heron after they've dried. Dilute ammonia or other strong aqueous solvents like simple green or even dish will remove them from plastics with relative ease.

I was sort of expecting this with Kung te Cheng but not with Blue Heron, I figured the talks of the chemical odor were just folks that had a peculiar sensitivity to the melon-citrus smell of the biocide in most of the noodler's inks. That said I do like the smell, it matches my mental image of the "smell of ink". The only problem is these inks tend to be weaker against strong aqueous solvents than the regular smelling bulletproof inks are, and they also dry on the nib and become hard starting after a few days. I didn't get a sample of Blue Heron and went straight for a bottle on the assumption that only KTC had that water-insolubility issue and I do regret that a little now.

Edited by Yoda4561, 11 February 2011 - 13:34.


#76 Joane

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 02:09

I like the smell of Waterman ink. That's the only one I will really stop and smell when filling a pen. One ink I seem to remember liking the smell of, although I haven't used any in years, was S.T. Dupont. It also had a very mild, fresh, pleasant smell, as I recall.
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#77 MarkAL

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 19:46

I had to stop using Baystate Blue for a while because I was getting headaches every time I refilled my pen with it. Can't describe the smell, other than strong. :hmm1:



I had the same issue with Diamine Imperial Blue. I had it in a Bexley Intrepid and noticed the strong smell (ammonia???) coming from then pen when I would use, but never thought much of it. Then, I carried it in my shirt pocket for a few days at work and each day developed very back headaches, especially behind my eyes. Finally, I wised up and flushed the ink out and put in another ink and all is well. While I like the color, I'll stay away from that particular ink from now on. Other Diamine inks I've used do not seem to have that issue.

#78 MarkAL

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 19:52

Speaking of the smell of ink, how many are old enough to remember the intoxicating smell of mimeograph machine ink? Here's a video to bring back memories.



Ah yes...I remember the nice buzz I would get (or thought I got) from smelling those sheets in elementary school. For me, mimeograph's were the "gateway" to sniffing glue..and then...well..nevermind...I'll just stick with ink :)

#79 Journal John

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Posted 20 March 2011 - 12:58

Smell memories. I loved the smell of the blue on those notes sent home from our teachers hot off the mimeograph press. If my memory is correct it seems that a until a few years ago some inks could be scented when purchased. Hmm maybe ink scented with the hint of hazelnut cream flavor.