I find Iroshizuku Asa-gao best in several features:
- most beautiful purple/blue
- thick enough, but flows easily
- easy to clean...it's a friendly "guest"
It is a bit more than double the price of Diamine, but I don't use so much ink that I count the dollars-per-gallon. I just bought a bottle of Noodlers Blue Eel, filled a Pelikan 600, a Pelikan 120, a Cleo Skibent Chiffre, and a Mont Blanc 32. The 600 is developing a sluggish piston, and the old 32 has a spot, about at the half full place, where it wants to stop unless persuaded. OK, the Eel is the persuader.
After four piston fills, the Eel has dropped to the upper-most thread in the bottle. That's not very much ink, and four full pens will last. I did four sheets, front and back, on a day when I had only one meeting.
Someone, with patience, might draw a line until they have used a bottle of ink. It would be interesting to know how long the line might be. Frank Dubiel has a table, toward the back of "Da Book", in which he estimates how many characters a fully inked pen could write. One surprise: Dubiel thinks that a Parker 51 aerometric has more writing in it than a P51 Vac...maybe the aerometric collector holds more ink?
Overall, I have a hunch that we spend more money buying fountain pens than buying ink in a typical year. Of course that has changed since the golden age of the '50s -- I'm looking at a mug with about 15 P51 and P61 pens...and I've packed another dozen Parkers. Ken Parker might have been happy, but I bet most people would have thought that...ummmm...excessive.
Edited by welch, 16 March 2013 - 00:34.