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Sailor Sei-Boku Blue Black Nano Ink


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#1 mhphoto

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 03:51

Here's a fantastic darkish blue ink that has the distinct honor of being the most heavily shading and sheening ink on plain copy paper that I've ever used. Great performance with this ink, and the only knocks against it are some smearing issues and less-than-ideal performance with the glass dip pen. Other than that, it's one of my new favorites. :thumbup:

Also it has many parts in its name…

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And here it is on copy paper. I didn't have time to make sure the color was accurate, so just I'm just using it to show the great shading on copy paper. And while you can't see it in the scan, it's was very sheen-heavy.

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#2 mhphoto

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 03:51

And some (crappy) pictures of its wonderful red sheen:

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#3 jandrese

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 05:23

I just went looking for a review of this ink and here is a good one, thanks for posting! I'll be getting this one for sure.

#4 Pentulant

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 06:31

Always enjoy your reviews - thank you for doing them, I know how much effort it takes.

Love the color and sheen of this one!
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#5 Silent Speaker

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 07:05

Oh, I never realised that this ink had a sheen! Thanks for your review and those photos, mhphoto!

It doesn't feather and works on all kinds of paper pretty well; totally waterproof etc., etc. Its shading qualities in a fine, wet nib (without feathering on the papers I use) really makes it one of my most favourite inks.

The only problem I have with it is maintenance issues, real and imagined:
I am reluctant to use this ink (or any particle-pigmented ink like the Platinum Carbons), in any pen that is difficult to flush out.

I've been using it in a Noodler's Ahab most of the time, as I can totally disassemble that pen and give it a really thorough cleaning with ease - this is especially required I think when I've had the pen filled with such an ink constantly for 6 months or so; I would never use it in a Pilot C823 for example, or in a Montblanc where unlike, say a Pel. Souveraen, you cannot even unscrew and remove the nib.

Now that I think about it, I'm reluctant to use it with any pen with which I cannot separate the nib and feed from the pen (with ease), and separate the nib and feed from each other so that any particle build up between the two can be scrubbed away (with ease).

This is why I find that the Ahab and other Noodler's pens are a real godsend in regards to these sorts of inks; allows me to be more or less lazy.

That's the problem when you have so many pens inked at one time and one of them has an ink that requires that the pen needs to be written with regularly to possibly prevent any freezing or clogging.

At least, that's what I've read. Perhaps I'm being over-cautious?

Edited by Silent Speaker, 16 December 2012 - 14:30.


#6 marcomillions

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 09:25

Excellent review, mh. You really did justice to this beautiful ink.

@silent--I wouldn't worry too much about these pigment/particle inks from Sailor. I too was anxious about them initially, especially because all my pens have fine nibs, which I figured would clog more easily than wider nibs. But after using both Sei-boku and its black equivalent, Kiwa-guro, for about a year, I've really encountered no problem with a variety of fine and extra-fine nibs, both European and Japanese. These are extremely well-behaved inks. They perform well with a wide range of papers, as mh stresses, and with a wide range of nibs (though I admit I've never tried them with dip pens).

Have fun.

Marc
When you say "black" to a printer in "big business" the word is almost meaningless, so innumerable are its meanings. To the craftsman, on the other hand, black is simply the black he makes --- the word is crammed with meaning: he knows the stuff as well as he knows his own hand. --- Eric Gill

#7 XiaoMG

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 09:54

Great review of a great ink. It is the only ink I have a second bottle of. For me, it is the most beautiful, most interesting, most EF-friendly permanent color ink available. I do sometimes wish it had a bit more saturation, but it is comparable to the hyped Iroshizuku Tsuki-yo in that regard, and the shading and sheen one is rewarded with more than compensate.

Edited by XiaoMG, 16 December 2012 - 09:56.

Robert.

#8 lovemy51

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 10:09

"say, beaucoup" nice!

#9 The Good Captain

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 10:33

Another cracking review but it's just a shame the ink is relatively expensive here. I suppose that the pigment composition might put some people off a bit too. Great colour though and magnificent shading.
One day, maybe...

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#10 Sandy1

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 14:04

Hi,

Many thanks for your Review of this exceptional ink! :thumbup:

I thought the results from the glass nib dip pen were actually quite good - even under a massive ink load there was no feathering. It seems the viscosity+surface tension of the ink is a bit too free-flowing for such nibs, though sei-boku does quite well from dip pens with reservoir/s.

I'd like to add that my experience shows that sei-boku can handle dilution to a far greater extent than most other FP inks: even at 10% ink + 90% [distilled] water, it holds together, without deal-breaker performance issues, though lubricity does suffer.

Also, it is extraordinary from very narrow nibs, and does not dry-out on the nib tip as quickly as iron-gall inks, (which may also be used for extremely fine lines.)

In addition, I found this ink does not play well with other inks, so pens should be cleansed before and after using sei-boku; and I strongly advise against mixing with other inks - though it may be of interest to see what comes of a mix with kiwa-guro. :hmm1:

Bye,
S1

Edited by Sandy1, 16 December 2012 - 14:12.

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#11 nicholasyeo

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 15:25

Wow, a beautiful review, wonderfully handwritten and I LOVE that shimmer!!

#12 WOBentley

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 01:59

I just got some of this ink but had not yet used it...guess I have to fix that!
Nice review and great job showing the sheen...
Shading, sheen, good performance and a nice color... :bunny01:
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#13 SunStained

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 02:26

The picture looks a lot more captivating than the scans. Too bad sheen tends to not show on scan. Fantastic review.

#14 inkstainedruth

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 05:12

Lovely color and shading (I had no idea, and no idea about she sheen either).
I use iron gall inks a fair amount, so I'm less concerned about maintenance than some people (and I'm pretty OCD even when changing between regular inks to begin with :embarrassed_smile:) I do worry about the description of Sei-Boku smearing when dry (which is a problem I've had with DC Supershow Blue on slicker papers like Tamoe River). Do you find it to have more or less smudging on particular types of paper, and if so, which ones are better or worse -- and did you find a difference with different pens on the same paper?
Also, are there any tips about pen cleaning that people would want to know about (similar, say, to the one about using a vinegar solution when flushing an IG ink and rinsing well before using an ammonia solution?) I haven't yet tried any pigmented inks (as opposed to dye based ones).
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#15 DanF

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 10:07

This is one of my favorite new (to me) inks. I was surprised to hear about the sheen, as I haven't seen any in my writing, even when looking specifically for it. Perhaps one needs a very wet pen. it does shade significantly, and I like the waterproof quality.

Dan
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#16 goldenkrishna

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 10:45

Hello mhphoto,

Thank you for this review with good photos. It is a wonderful ink with an intense, shading colour. I like it.

Enjoy it!


With love,
goldenkrishna
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#17 XiaoMG

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 14:10

I was surprised to hear about the smearing when dry. It's one ink I don't have that problem with, and I tend to write on Tomoe River and Rhodia DotPads. I've also heard some have issues with it running when soaked, but mine doesn't move at all under running water or soaking. I can't say the same for Kiwaguro, but Seiboku has been a ridiculously good ink to me.
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#18 mhphoto

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 21:10

Thanks everyone! :thumbup:

I was surprised to hear about the smearing when dry. It's one ink I don't have that problem with, and I tend to write on Tomoe River and Rhodia DotPads. I've also heard some have issues with it running when soaked, but mine doesn't move at all under running water or soaking. I can't say the same for Kiwaguro, but Seiboku has been a ridiculously good ink to me.


I think I forgot to mention, my "smear test" was done on the word "Sailor" in the title, but the smear isn't really visible in the scan. And it seemed to be more of a "dry" smear, as opposed to the "wet" smear you get with, say, Noodler's Air-Corp Blue-Black. That is to say, it's dry, but smears, whereas ACBB (when laid on thick) is slightly "tacky" when dry, which causes smearing.

Maybe it's the pigment in the ink that smears when the ink is dry? :hmm1:

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#19 notbob

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 22:53

I think I forgot to mention, my "smear test" was done on the word "Sailor" in the title, but the smear isn't really visible in the scan. And it seemed to be more of a "dry" smear, as opposed to the "wet" smear you get with, say, Noodler's Air-Corp Blue-Black. That is to say, it's dry, but smears, whereas ACBB (when laid on thick) is slightly "tacky" when dry, which causes smearing.
Maybe it's the pigment in the ink that smears when the ink is dry? :hmm1:


As usual, your ink tests are a fount of great info, and in my clueless case, a valuable learning session. As another poster stated, I never even heard of "sheen". Could you please elaborate a bit? Is sheen only visible when the ink is wet or does it remain after drying? I can see nary a trace viewing dead on, but at an angle, it's can't be missed.

Also, what's the deal with "smear"? What good is an ink, dye or pigmented, if it smears after drying? Seems like a bad choice for archival use, or any use, for that matter. What conditions cause this smearing? I read on another website the ink smeared after drying due to sweaty hands. Is that the only condition or does it smear from dry hands? ...or facing pages? ....or tail-dragging flying monkees? With the exception of the red sheen, the basic color doesn't appear to be anything special or something that can't be found in another ink, so what makes smearing tolerable in this ink? Is "smear" the price one must pay for "sheen"?

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#20 mhphoto

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 06:34

As usual, your ink tests are a fount of great info, and in my clueless case, a valuable learning session. As another poster stated, I never even heard of "sheen". Could you please elaborate a bit? Is sheen only visible when the ink is wet or does it remain after drying? I can see nary a trace viewing dead on, but at an angle, it's can't be missed.

Also, what's the deal with "smear"? What good is an ink, dye or pigmented, if it smears after drying? Seems like a bad choice for archival use, or any use, for that matter. What conditions cause this smearing? I read on another website the ink smeared after drying due to sweaty hands. Is that the only condition or does it smear from dry hands? ...or facing pages? ....or tail-dragging flying monkees? With the exception of the red sheen, the basic color doesn't appear to be anything special or something that can't be found in another ink, so what makes smearing tolerable in this ink? Is "smear" the price one must pay for "sheen"?


Thanks! :thumbup:

Sheen is, according to Nathan Tardif, the crystallization that occurs when certain inks dry, usually in areas that were wetter (the bottom parts of heavily shaded letters) and around the edges (where some inks tend to pool, especially with flexible script). I'm not clear on the cause of the crystallization, (i.e., whether it's caused by a certain ingredient, a class of ingredients, etc.) There is no sheen when the ink is wet, only when dry.

Sheen is almost always more visible when viewed at an angle (and many times only visible at an angle) with a light source behind the paper (which is why all my pictures of sheen are taken at an angle). And inks smearing and sheen, at least in my experience, seem to be independent qualities, not dependent on each other.

Some inks are more "specialized", by which I mean they're either designed to have a certain look (take Noodler's Tchaikovsky or Periwinkle for instance) or to have certain longevity qualities (such as Noodler's Bad Black Moccasin and Sailor Sei-Boku). All of those inks have smeared in my experience. The "wet" smearing I mentioned is probably caused by some component of the ink (if someone knows, please chime in).

Sweaty hand-induced smearing is probably more an issue of the ink's water resistance rather than completion of drying (unless, you know, it also doesn't dry :rolleyes: ).

And flying monkeys ALWAYS cause smearing. :roflmho:

Edited by mhphoto, 18 December 2012 - 06:36.

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