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Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Ink


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21 replies to this topic

#1 lapis

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 12:10

Introduction: Why did I buy this? Because I heard all about it and was curious to see how it (and its pen) would work out. I highlight a lot of stuff. Stuff in books, mags, newspapers but also that which I myself have printed out or written by hand. Of course, 97% of the time with a FP, 2% using a pencil.

Pen and paper: At the moment I write with this ink only in the Pelikan M205 DUO which came along with it in a box set. That pen is a comparable with any Pelikan M2XX except that this pen is only delivered with a BB nib. Pelikan in Hannover told me that the pen and ink are only available together as a set, but my dealer (thanks, Rolf) said that he already had the 30-ml bottles available separately at a price of 3.70 Euros. The whole box set came in at 79.90 Euros.

Posted Image

For the scans in this review, I'm using 90 g HP Bright White Inkjet paper.

Ink properties: The actual colour of the ink itself is a fluorescent bright yellow. As we'll see, you can use it as a marker but also as a real writing instrument just like any other FP.
Posted Image
Achtung! That scan in yellow was done using my HP Deskjet F4580 (via Windows 7) and if you think that's terrible, you should take a look at the photos I shot with a PanasonicDMC-TZ4.

Can't read it? I'll translate it! "So, hang on! I mean, a bright yellow on a bright white paper isn't exactly what I'd call easy to read. Saturation/intensity is quite high. It has to be high if you want a good visibility of the lines coming out of the pen. But that's going to be hard to see (I think) with any ink a lot lighter than, say, Herbin's Orange Indien, or even CdA's Saffron. Wetness/flow is also very high and it lubricates the nib nicely although I do have a lot of inks which are much wetter (Sailor's Jentle Inks, PR's Tanzanite, CdA's Amazon etc). If the pen remains uncapped for more than 5-10 min, there is a slight delay in starting, but after 1-2 mm of writing, that insufficiency is gone. Drying time is about 15 s. Once it is dry, it stays dry and does not smear or smudge. But, after soaking in water for 10+ s, the yellow all washes off. Thus, rinse ability is good, and staining (of your skin) is unnoticeable." Of course, that colouring of the text isn't supposed to duplicate the real colour of the ink, it's supposed to make it halfways legible (har, har).

Thank you for reading this far or at least trying to. I see no bleeding or feathering, no shading or fading. And now for the neatest part. The actual property of this ink being able to dissolve that ink line which is to be highlighted was completely unexpected. Two very important points here: (1) This ink by no means dissolves and smears any writing as much as an "ordinary" marker pen does (e.g. from Faber-Castell), and (2) The less bulletproof the ink is, the less it gets smeared when it is highlighted. I.e. Noodler's HOD is much more smearable /dissolvable than Waterman's Florida Blue is. A few words written with Florida Blue do, however get somewhat "yellowed out". Even a few words printed by an ink printer are less smeared than those written with HOD. Top notch writer which is unsmearable upon getting highlighted remains a good old pencil.

Posted Image
This ink has no strong smell but I do discern a very slight touch of a chemical, maybe even like rubber which I do not perceive in any other of my Pelikan inks. AFAIK, this ink is only available in 30-ml bottles, and not in cartridges (hey, this pen has a plunger mechanism anyhow!)

Instructions: these are printed on the inside box, and I quote: "When changing ink, please pay attention to the following: thoroughly rinse theM205 DUO with cold water before filling with fountain pen or highlighter ink. Attention! The highlighter ink is only suited for the M205 DUO fountain pen. Do not use with other writing utensils!"

Comparable inks: I know of no others except PR's Chartreuse and a few Noodler's. I have not tried these out yet.

Pros and cons: This ink in this pen provides a nice combo as a highlighter and a writing instrument. As a highlighter, this Pelikan nib with this ink makes a line which is only about 0.95 mm wide (both in the up-and-down and in the horizontal direction), so that many of us might prefer to stick to a 5-mm wide marker like the Faber-Castell shown above. If you are trying to highlight a very thin line or two in a telephone book, this combo is great. As a writing instrument, the colour is okay but for some of us, that might already be fulfilled with a light red or green instead. This yellow is at least for me not as easy to read as Poppy Red or Kelly Green, both of which I use very often for making notes, especially corrections over, around or alongside any other writing. And last, but not at all least, I find the biggest drawback is that it may not always be easy to use this ink as a highlighter for anything written with a FP filled with some inks or printed with an ink printer.

Short story even shorter: for a marker in the sense of highlighting very finely printed words (like in a telephone book) this yellow in this BB pen is literally and figuratively fine. For a larger printing (like in Arial 10+), any "ordinary", wider marker may be more convenient than doing a lot of scribbling over each word. Using it to highlight a print-out from my Deskjet was much better than expected. For the marking of any text with a line or encirclement, or as in notes or corrections, this yellow is nice but a bright red or green may appear more visible. Using this yellow ink as a highlighter on a line or two written with a FP filled with a bulletproof ink, it's game over.

Thank you for your attention,
Mike

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)


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#2 Pippin60

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 13:04

Nice update, my wife loves highlighters and already uses a few highlighting preppies with Noodler's, she expressed an interest in this pen. I do wonder whats special about the pen; feed, piston?

"When changing ink, please pay attention to the following: thoroughly rinse theM205 DUO with cold water before filling with fountain pen or highlighter ink. Attention! The highlighter ink is only suited for the M205 DUO fountain pen. Do not use with other writing utensils!"

The difference between the almost right word & the right word is really a large matter--it's the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.
- Mark Twain in a Letter to George Bainton, 10/15/1888


#3 Truppi327

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 13:34

Nice update, my wife loves highlighters and already uses a few highlighting preppies with Noodler's, she expressed an interest in this pen. I do wonder whats special about the pen; feed, piston?"When changing ink, please pay attention to the following: thoroughly rinse theM205 DUO with cold water before filling with fountain pen or highlighter ink. Attention! The highlighter ink is only suited for the M205 DUO fountain pen. Do not use with other writing utensils!"



Maybe this is just Pelikan protecting themselves in case someone has a stain or other trouble with the ink in another pen? Then they can just point to the warning and be absolved of blame.

I think other companies do similar things when they warn you to only use their ink in their pens. I think I read somewhere that Mont Blanc does this.
Best,
Mike Truppi

8/24/10

#4 lapis

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 14:00

Nice update, my wife loves highlighters and already uses a few highlighting preppies with Noodler's, she expressed an interest in this pen. I do wonder whats special about the pen; feed, piston?
"When changing ink, please ..."

I see two things (but I may be wrong):

(1) If you ever had any ink -- whatever, apparently other than the fluorescent yellow ink -- then you should wash that out of this M205 pen first -- because if you don't, you may start off with a staining of the barrel insides, as well as a colour transformation of the new ink to be used (especially the yellow stuff). I myself am, however, pretty sure that if you have, say, Lamy's bottled b-b in there and then change to MB's bottled b-b, you probably don't have to rinse at all.
(2) Since the ink is fluorescent and likely does contain solutes and/or solvents which are different from those in most other inks, the sealing parts of the plunger and barrel insides are probably built out of materials which most (or even some) pens do not possess.That is, any use of fluorescent Eddie in any other pen may leech its insides out.

Whew

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#5 cmeisenzahl

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Posted 15 September 2010 - 15:26

Great review, thanks!

#6 777

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 14:50

Most interesting review, thanks. I must agree with the fact that I think a BB nib is too small for a normal highlighter. I would prefer a nice big music nib for this sort of pen...

Need a pen repaired or a nib re-ground? I'd love to help you out.


Posted Image


Colossians 3:17 - And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.


#7 Truppi327

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 15:22

I neglected to say what a great review this was in my previous post. So...

Thanks for this great review! :thumbup:

Edited by Truppi327, 16 September 2010 - 15:22.

Best,
Mike Truppi

8/24/10

#8 Scriver

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Posted 16 September 2010 - 17:48

Having run out of Noodler's Firefly earlier today, I filled my Pilot Parallel 3.8 mm with Pelikon Duo Highlighter Ink, willfully ignoring the warning on the ink packaging. The Pelikan ink is wetter than the Noodler's and a brighter, more florescent shade of yellow. It is also slightly slower drying (not surprising given it is wetter). I find the brightness makes the Pelikan ink a little bit better than the Noodler's for highlighting but slightly less suited for marginal notes. The Pelikan ink also a bit more expensive. So far, no apparent damage to the pen. Of course, a pen tough enough to stand up to Noodler's ....

#9 Sandy1

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 04:16

Most interesting review, thanks. I must agree with the fact that I think a BB nib is too small for a normal highlighter. I would prefer a nice big music nib for this sort of pen...

Hi,

I don't want to mis-interpret your preference for a 'big music nib', perhaps just a reference to an ber-wide nib, but ...

I have 3 Asian MS nibs: Sailor, Pilot C74 & the nib fitted to the Platinum 3776. They top-out at about 1 mm.

The Pelikan M200-series g-p BB comes in at about 0.8 mm. (In action : My link)

(The BB nib on the 78G is a bit wider, perhaps 1.1 -ish.)

I think the Music nib on offer at richardpens is a very different affair, with a oodles of flex. Perhaps Most likely the crafters could make a wider bespoke nib.

I use a B nib, and just underline stuff.

Other practitioners have a preference for mid-width Pilot Parallel (plate) Pens used in conjunction with a cork-backed flexible s. steel (Westcott) ruler.

Cheers!
S1

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#10 JMX

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 15:04

Where'd you get it?




In Cologne, every store charges the MRSP of 95 Euros.


Pelikan 140 OB
Pelikan M605 blue F
Pelikan M200 transparent (Demonstrator Japan) M
Pelikan Level 65 yellow M
Pelikan Level 65 red B
Pelikan Go! black/magenta M
Pelikan Go! black/petrol M
Pelikan M70/Go! (C/C) magenta B
Pelikan Steno red (70s)
Lamy Safari charcoal 1.5 mm italic
Lamy Safari yellow EF
Lamy Vista Eyedropper 1.9 mm italic
Reform P 120
2x Reform 1745


#11 777

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 15:15

Most interesting review, thanks. I must agree with the fact that I think a BB nib is too small for a normal highlighter. I would prefer a nice big music nib for this sort of pen...

Hi,

I don't want to mis-interpret your preference for a 'big music nib', perhaps just a reference to an ber-wide nib, but ...

I have 3 Asian MS nibs: Sailor, Pilot C74 & the nib fitted to the Platinum 3776. They top-out at about 1 mm.

The Pelikan M200-series g-p BB comes in at about 0.8 mm. (In action : My link)

(The BB nib on the 78G is a bit wider, perhaps 1.1 -ish.)

I think the Music nib on offer at richardpens is a very different affair, with a oodles of flex. Perhaps Most likely the crafters could make a wider bespoke nib.

I use a B nib, and just underline stuff.

Other practitioners have a preference for mid-width Pilot Parallel (plate) Pens used in conjunction with a cork-backed flexible s. steel (Westcott) ruler.

Cheers!
S1


Ah, I was thinking of music nibs like this.

Posted Image

Need a pen repaired or a nib re-ground? I'd love to help you out.


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#12 Sandy1

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 17:23

Most interesting review, thanks. I must agree with the fact that I think a BB nib is too small for a normal highlighter. I would prefer a nice big music nib for this sort of pen...

Hi,

I don't want to mis-interpret your preference for a 'big music nib', perhaps just a reference to an ber-wide nib, but ...

I have 3 Asian MS nibs: Sailor, Pilot C74 & the nib fitted to the Platinum 3776. They top-out at about 1 mm.

The Pelikan M200-series g-p BB comes in at about 0.8 mm. (In action : My link)

(The BB nib on the 78G is a bit wider, perhaps 1.1 -ish.)

I think the Music nib on offer at richardpens is a very different affair, with a oodles of flex. Perhaps Most likely the crafters could make a wider bespoke nib.

I use a B nib, and just underline stuff.

Other practitioners have a preference for mid-width Pilot Parallel (plate) Pens used in conjunction with a cork-backed flexible s. steel (Westcott) ruler.

Cheers!
S1


Ah, I was thinking of music nibs like this.

Posted Image


Ah, now that is a big ol' Music nib.

Many thanks for the clarification, and the portrait of the nib. (But what feed+pen?)

and don't tell Ghostplane

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#13 lapis

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 07:30

In defence of Noodler's, I'd like to add this: I read that their highlighter inks e.g. Firefly can highlight a printed text like that from a laser printer or in a book or mag without any smearing, but maybe they can also highlight -- without any smearing -- a word or two of yours written with one of their bulletproof inks as well.
Anybody out there who can verify this?

Mike

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)


#14 axolotl66

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Posted 18 September 2010 - 12:17

Great review, exactly my experience of the DUO! The ink is very flourescent, a bit too flourescent for text I would say, I think my eyes would get tired reading it! I've only done a little over-writing of FP ink text with the highlighter ink, all of this over Diamine inks, and there was smearing regardless of how much time had passed since writing, so I think I shall be using it to underline, if at all. The BB nib is nice and fat compared to my EEFs, and I couldn't resist filling it with Diamine Graphite and doing some BIG writing with it! Once that's done, I think I will use it with Monaco Red for emphasis rather than as a highlighter per se.

It is a lovely package, by the way. Although I prefer minimal packaging, the presentation box etc. is very nicely done if a bit "over the top".
Graham
Schiet naar de top

#15 Sandy1

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 03:44

Hi,

Thanks again for the fine review. And the samples of the Duo in action.

I am very impressed by the fact that the ink does not smear regular dye-base FP inks. That feature is a great boon to those of us who throw ideas onto the page not onto a computer. Outlines, diagrams, key ideas, detail, what-ifs, etc. Now one can go back and hi-lite the stuff without the smear from the felt tip hi-liters. Or to circle key stuff - basic mark-up & culling. So I think its great for the way I work.

  • So, how does it run on newspapers & glossy but cheap magazines that likely use vegetable-based inks? (No petrochems, so more easily recycled)??
  • Can another ink be mixed with the Duo ink?? (To change the colour: e.g. + Red to give Orange; + Blue to give Green)
  • Can the ink be used to eradicate 'bulletproof' inks? (I'm being naughty.)
Given the properties of the ink, I would be hesitant to load it into my rare / expensive pens; and the plate pen seems not to have dissolved (yet). Hmm:hmm1:

I imagine that a B&W laser-printed image shouldn't smear.

In a week or so, when I get back to my inks, I'll do up some of the same samples with the Noodler's Firefly as for the Duo ink, on the HPJ1124:
  • Plain dye-based FP ink: different spans of time since written.
  • I-G inks. (MBMB, R&K, Herbin Encre Authentique)
  • BP
  • Uni-ball 'Vision' waterproof RB, which complies with the ISO standard for permanent RP inks.
  • Sharpie
  • Legal Lapis & Lexington Grey
  • Inkjet
  • Vegetable-based ink/s on newspapers, glossy magazines, etc.
Writers for Firefly:
  • Queue-Tip: to emulate a typical Hi-Liter fiber-tip applicator
  • Parallel plate pen
  • M200-series Pelikan, with g-p BB nib. Please click the Pen Link
Mixing Firefly + Blue / +Red, then repeat samples above.

Wet samples (Splatter & Soapy Soak)

Please PM me if anyone thinks of other (practical) samples to run.

Bye,
S1


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#16 lovemy51

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 05:25

In defence of Noodler's, I'd like to add this: I read that their highlighter inks e.g. Firefly can highlight a printed text like that from a laser printer or in a book or mag without any smearing, but maybe they can also highlight -- without any smearing -- a word or two of yours written with one of their bulletproof inks as well.
Anybody out there who can verify this?

Mike

it does smear on an injet copy. don't know bout' laser. but... it didn't smear the papers i got from the IRS (and i guess these are from in a laser copier) :blush: . i don't have any bulletproof ink to check on that, but it didn't smear the "thistle co." ink i made from powder ( see Thistle Co. ink review here ) . that's good news, i guess!

Edited by lovemy51, 20 September 2010 - 05:29.


#17 lapis

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Posted 20 September 2010 - 12:23

Thanks S1 ! You always have so many ideas which I overlooked (no, didn't ignore).

So, here we go.

As a starter, a small piece of newspaper, with some linings in and around the end of a review. Two lines of scribbling over a few words were meant to enlarge/enrich the nib width/coverage.
Posted Image

Then an experiment with an ink mix on 90 g HP paper. In case you can't read that what I wrote there (or it makes you too dizzy), here's a FPN version: "First off, a word or 2 with the M205. Then, below, 200-l swabs of (a) This ink, (B) Florida Blue, and A 1:1 mix of each."
Posted Image

What does that teach me about life? My guess is that

(1) Even newspaper paper is relatively immune. This ink still does its job nicely. Apparently no -- or at least minimal -- dissolution of the paper and/or any of the printing on it is to be seen.
(2) A 1:1 mix of this ink and Florida Blue yields in fact a new solution with absolutely no precipitation and which isn't even milky. Even many hours later.
(3) A swab is finally the way to go if you want a really fat highlighting which also nicely covers any printing in a book, mag or newspaper, laser printout (data not shown), but that method is IMO too tedious to use on a routine basis.
(4) Finally, the biggest surprise here is that even a 1:1 mix of this ink and Florida Blue remains almost as yellow as the M205 DUO Highlighter Ink was in the first place. If I strain my eyes enough, I'd say that the yellowness is exactly the same but maybe a tick less fluorescent. I was expecting more of a green.

Of course, all of this jazz may end up differently with different ink mixes and/or on different papers, but I'm too lazy here.

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)


#18 Sandy1

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Posted 21 September 2010 - 02:08

Hi,

Thanks for running the other wee samples. :)

If this continues, you'll need another bottle of the ink!

The results on the newsprint were as anticipated
: the veg. inks and the Duo ink are sufficiently opposite/different that they do not interact. Very useful result.

The interaction of Duo with the WFB in the mix was totally unexpected.

Duo ate WFB!!

:ninja:

OMG!
They killed Kenny!!

That's not such a welcome property. The visibility of the Duo ink under certain light sources, esp. Tungsten, may be unacceptable. :glare:

Personally, I would dedicate a pen to the Duo ink, and most likely the neat-o Duo pen.

BTW, I emailed Regina, (of Martini Auctions fame), who indicated that the pens must be sold with the BB nibs. So for those of us with nibs we'd rather use, the BB nib may be redundant. The cost of the pen would be 75, (including shipping, VAT-free, no ink).

I do think Pelikan has come-up with a very interesting pair of products. Certainly unique. :thumbup:

If they can do that, then it bodes well for their new line of conventional inks. (But why no Brown?)

Bye,
S1


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#19 Pinkys.Brain

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Posted 05 January 2012 - 14:09

I put a converter in a spare Lamy Logo (1.9 nib) I had lying around, and it works just fine.

Gel Ink (uniball signo 207) => no smearing
Permanent Marker (Stabilo Ohpen) => no smearing

FP ink (Pelikan brilliant black) => some smearing
FP ink ( Waterman Havana) => some smearing

The 1.9 nib lays down a thick wet stroke. Turning the pen and using the upper side of the nib it lays down less ink, and then there is almost no smearing => a second layer of the highlighter naturally leads to more smearing.

Good thing about this ink is, that it is cheap: I paid 3,70€ for the 30ml bottle, so it is on par with normal inks (Waterman Havana, Pelikan rilliant black)

Edited by Pinkys.Brain, 05 January 2012 - 14:34.


#20 quoad

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Posted 11 May 2012 - 17:39

Just to add to this, really...

I saw this review before ordering a Duo a couple of days ago. From Niche Pens.

One of those entirely unnecessary purchases, but it looked tempting... so ay. I went for the 14kt nib, too - an extra £40 through Niche (if I'm spending £80 on a pen, I'm up for going the extra mile for a 14kt nib.)

Bleh. What can I say?

The pen is lovely.

The nib is stunningly smooth - a real beaut.

But... yeah... as everyone else has said, and as I suspected, it's just... not really designed for anything. Even the 'highlighted' print on the box looks kinda messy, and IMO that says a lot.

It's way, way too thin for a highlighter. I print off 2-4 tiled A4 pages per A4 page, and it's still way too small to effectively highlight. It feels beautiful, but I'm going over every darned line 2-4 times (definitely more like 4 for half-decent coverage). Reading articles is taking me 5mins longer than necessary, and that extra time is entirely spent on filling in the gaps / aiming for half-decent highlighting.

It's also far too broad - for my liking - for conventional writing. So - at the moment - a £115 pen is acting as a slightly inadequate highlighter, and a slightly inadequate writer. Which isn't really ideal. I've taken to using the reverse side of the nib, which does give a fine-ish line... but, again, that's not really a compromise I want to be making on a £115 pen.

On the bright side, when Niche saw that I'd ordered (and not completed) a couple of times, Ross emailed to ask if I was having any difficulties... and offered a nib swap, if things didn't work out.

So I'm going to keep on trying it out over the weekend, and look to swap for an EF / F nib (perhaps even a M) come Monday if it's still feeling like a clumsy compromise.

A shame, tbh. I really really wanted to like it. But it's fulfilled my most cautious suspicions.

On the bright side, though - it really is a gorgeous pen / nib; I can see myself using it extensively with the highlighter ink (for underlining / margin notes); and it has a definite place in my pen collection.

Only it's unlikely to replace any conventional FPs (it might do, mind); and it's extremely unlikely to replace a £1.50 highlighter.

Edited by quoad, 11 May 2012 - 17:43.







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