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Penbbs No. 116 Centaurea Cyanus (Cornflower) Ink Review

asia asian china chinese flower penbbs review ink cornflower purple

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#1 TruthPil

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 13:09

Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN.
They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. Within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao.

 

This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ tenth series. It is named after the cornflower (centaurea cyanus) which can be various shades of blue or lavender. Personally, I think this ink is too dark and too purple to match the flower, but it’s a nice purple nonetheless.

 

No. 116 is noticeably bluer than No. 95. It is very saturated (more so in person than in the photos) and has virtually no shading. This ink dries quickly and only shows a little feathering and bleed through with wet nibs. There is slight water resistance as well; the blue and purple components separate and leave a feint line.

 

This is the best performing ink of the four Penbbs inks I’ve reviewed and is the only one I’d be comfortable using regularly on average paper. Penbbs No. 116 is a nice, vibrant blue-leaning purple that behaves itself, but doesn’t stand out as particularly interesting or exciting to me.

 

 

 

Pens used (in order):

1. Pilot 78G Fine

2. Lamy Safari Broad

3. Pilot Plumix Italic

4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex

5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub

 

fpn_1486559210__centaurea_cyanus.jpg

 

 

Swab            

                                                              

fpn_1486558034__penbbs_116_1_compressed.                           

 

Paper Towel Drop

 

fpn_1486558147__penbbs_116_2_compressed.

 

 

80gsm Rhodia

 

fpn_1486558199__penbbs_116_3_compressed.

 

fpn_1486558243__penbbs_116_4_compressed.

 

fpn_1486558291__penbbs_116_5_compressed.

 

 

73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown)

 

fpn_1486558334__penbbs_116_6_compressed.

 

fpn_1486558390__penbbs_116_7_compressed.

 

fpn_1486558426__penbbs_116_8_compressed.

 

 

70gms Deli Copy Paper

 

fpn_1486558460__penbbs_116_9__compressed

 

fpn_1486558654__penbbs_116_10_compressed

 

fpn_1486558690__penbbs_116_11_compressed

 

 

Moleskine

 

fpn_1486558739__penbbs_116_12_compressed

 

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fpn_1486558836__penbbs_116_14_compressed

 

 

fpn_1486558882__penbbs_116_15_compressed

 

 

Water Resistance

 

fpn_1486558917__penbbs_116_16_compressed

 

fpn_1486558958__penbbs_116_17_compressed

 

 

Comparison

fpn_1486559012__penbbs_116_18_compressed

Note: The comparison shows the ink's color more accurately than the other photos. It really is this dark.

 

 

Here is Penbbs’ image of the bottle and label for reference:

 

fpn_1486559156__penbbs_116_19.jpg  

 

 

 

 

 

SDG


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#2 visvamitra

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 13:35

Looks ok to me.



#3 Lord Epic

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 13:50

Where to get that Chinese TR like paper?  :puddle:

 

Lovely review! I find it too light for my purpose though.

 

 

~Epic


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And I want before I die
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Like tears in rain.
Time to die.

 


#4 white_lotus

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 17:27

Very nice ink. It seems to work well on Moleskine in the finer nib. Would you say that it is similar to the Noodler's LRM?



#5 lapis

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 20:20

Excellent review. Above all, the various papers, including their feathering and bleed-through aspects.

Got any Diamine Cornflower on hand? The latter seems to be darker and have more of a red-touch.

 

Mike


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#6 amberleadavis

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Posted 08 February 2017 - 23:45

Wonderful review. Thank you!


Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).

 

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#7 TruthPil

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Posted 09 February 2017 - 00:14

Very nice ink. It seems to work well on Moleskine in the finer nib. Would you say that it is similar to the Noodler's LRM?

 

No. 95 is actually close to identical in color to LRM.

This ink is noticeably more blue. Not quite a blurple, but the blue is definitely evident.


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#8 TruthPil

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Posted 09 February 2017 - 00:16

Excellent review. Above all, the various papers, including their feathering and bleed-through aspects.

Got any Diamine Cornflower on hand? The latter seems to be darker and have more of a red-touch.

 

Mike

 

Diamine Cornflower was the first ink that came to mind when I tried this ink, but I don't have a sample of it.
I was thinking that I need to get more of the Diamine Flowers series (I LOVE Bougainvillea), so I'll try to track down a sample and add a comparison to this post.


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#9 TruthPil

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Posted 09 February 2017 - 00:19

Where to get that Chinese TR like paper?  :puddle:

 

Lovely review! I find it too light for my purpose though.

 

 

~Epic

 

Like almost everything else I use, I found the paper on Taobao.
It's quite cheap, but the paper curls up after being written on and is almost unusable if you get hand oils on it.

I have to do some acrobatics with the camera to hide the curling problem.

I just noticed that real Tomoe River paper has finally become available on Taobao, so maybe I'll finally be able to get the real deal.

Previously it cost something ridiculous like $1 per sheet.


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#10 TruthPil

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Posted 09 February 2017 - 00:19

Wonderful review. Thank you!

 

Thanks for reading Amber!


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#11 Lord Epic

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Posted 09 February 2017 - 10:28

 

Like almost everything else I use, I found the paper on Taobao.
It's quite cheap, but the paper curls up after being written on and is almost unusable if you get hand oils on it.

I have to do some acrobatics with the camera to hide the curling problem.

I just noticed that real Tomoe River paper has finally become available on Taobao, so maybe I'll finally be able to get the real deal.

Previously it cost something ridiculous like $1 per sheet.

 

Thanks for the reply. I'll be happy to send you some TR if you don't mind, just shoot me a PM with your address and I'll have it out

 

 

~Epic


Letter Writers Alliance
 
A sincere man am I
From the land where palm trees grow,
And I want before I die
My soul's verses to bestow.
 
All those moments will be lost in time.
Like tears in rain.
Time to die.

 


#12 TruthPil

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 05:44

 

Thanks for the reply. I'll be happy to send you some TR if you don't mind, just shoot me a PM with your address and I'll have it out

 

 

~Epic

 

Thanks so much for your kind offer! I'll send you a PM. :happycloud9:


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#13 Patrick L

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 12:37

 

Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. Within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao.

 

 

When you say that these inks can be easily purchased through Taobao , you mean  that  people who live in China can easily buy this ink but that Taobao will not sell and export  it to foreign customers ?



#14 TruthPil

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 13:03

When you say that these inks can be easily purchased through Taobao , you mean  that  people who live in China can easily buy this ink but that Taobao will not sell and export  it to foreign customers ?


In a word, yes.
From what I understand liquids cannot by shipped out of the country by regular post. Other folks on here have been brave enough to use go-between companies that can somehow get the items from taobao, but sometimes those are scams. The cost also goes up a lot that way.

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#15 Manalto

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 13:24

Nice-looking packaging. Thanks for your thorough review.


James






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