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Dark Iron Gall Ink (Black Or Close To Black)

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#1 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 04 March 2017 - 19:27

Hi there,

 

Requesting advice from the FPN community regarding dark or black IG inks.  

 

I've been searching for an Iron Gall ink that starts dark and cures to black or near-black.  Primary requirements are darkness/blackness and water-resistance.  The secondary requirements are that the ink exhibit some reasonable degree of "wetness" or lubrication, and not be prone to clogging or to exhibit excessively "dry" performance characteristics.  Tertiary characteristics are considered highly desirable but not essential:  archival qualities, and better-than-average lightfastness for IG (based on the assumption that lackluster lightfastness is a potential Achilles' heel for all IG inks).  

 

EDITED TO CLARIFY:  I am looking for a commercially available ink that I can purchase using PayPal or my debit card.  I am not a chemist and would prefer not to fabricate my own IG ink in my kitchen based on arcane recipes, shamanistic rites and channeling extradimensional beings.  

 

So far the top candidates appear to be Akkerman #10 and KWZI IG Blue Black.  KWZI looks pretty darn promising and I have placed an order for some.

 

I have conducted several searches of these forums and found some good information, but was unable to find an IG ink that starts black and remains black as it cures.  A previous forum post from 2010 or 2012 indicated that there were no latently black IG inks on the market at that time, with blue-blacks being predominant.  Based on that assumption, have any truly black IG inks been released onto the market within the last 5-7 years?  If not, what are the darkest blue-black inks that cure to near blackness?  

 

Inks I have already already considered, ordered or tried:

R&K Salix (fairly light in coloration, what I am currently using as primary IG ink)

ESSRI (dry, concerns about clogging risk)

Diamine Registrar's ink / Chesterfield Archival Vault (dry, unsure of clogging risk) 

Hero 232 (ordered, awaiting slow boat from China)

 

I welcome any inputs, questions or feedback.  Thanks in advance for your help.

 

*** Edited to correct my careless spelling errors. ***


Edited by bigkahuna, 04 March 2017 - 19:45.


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#2 Tasmith

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Posted 04 March 2017 - 21:31

Just purchased my first bottle of Akkerman #10 from Vanness Pens yesterday at the Baltimore Pen Show.

 

Been using it in my TWISBI Eco 1.1mm Stub purchased from Anderson Pens also at the Baltimore Pen Show.

 

Writes blue-black, but dries to a dark gray to blackish.  While not a wet ink, I've heard it's wetter than most Iron Galls.  In the TWSBI, it writes on the dry-ish side but not too dry.  Does not feather on cheap paper or show any bleed through.  Tested water resistance on Rhodia, and I saw zero effect from the running water.

 

I tried to erase it, and it's very resistant and does not smear.

 

So far, I really like it.

 

You can only get it in the US from Vanness Pens or Anderson Pens.  As of yesterday, 3 March 17 Anderson's were out of stock.  Vanness' website says they are out, but that's because they brought their entire stock of it to Baltimore.

 

You can safely order online from either Anderson http://www.andersonp...com/Default.asp and Vanness https://vanness1938.com/.  Both have great service and stellar reputations.

 

Purchased my first bottle of R&K Salix from Anderson's yesterday.  Haven't tried it yet.  How do yo like it?


Edited by Tasmith, 04 March 2017 - 21:37.


#3 aderoy

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Posted 04 March 2017 - 21:35

Know these are not Iron Gall, yet take a look at Carbon nano particle inks. Both Platinum and Sailor have Black Carbon ink that are very water resistant, black and archival. Find to be well behaved, have proven to be light fast.



#4 dcwaites

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Posted 04 March 2017 - 22:05

Blackstone's Barrister Blue is a very dark blue Iron-Gall (technically ferro-tannate) ink that quickly turns darker as it dries.

 

It's available from Anderson Pens in the US


fpn_1412827311__pg_d_104def64.gif

 

 

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#5 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 01:51

Just purchased my first bottle of Akkerman #10 from Vanness Pens yesterday at the Baltimore Pen Show.

 

Been using it in my TWISBI Eco 1.1mm Stub purchased from Anderson Pens also at the Baltimore Pen Show.

 

Writes blue-black, but dries to a dark gray to blackish.  While not a wet ink, I've heard it's wetter than most Iron Galls.  In the TWSBI, it writes on the dry-ish side but not too dry.  Does not feather on cheap paper or show any bleed through.  Tested water resistance on Rhodia, and I saw zero effect from the running water.

 

I tried to erase it, and it's very resistant and does not smear.

 

So far, I really like it.

 

You can only get it in the US from Vanness Pens or Anderson Pens.  As of yesterday, 3 March 17 Anderson's were out of stock.  Vanness' website says they are out, but that's because they brought their entire stock of it to Baltimore.

 

You can safely order online from either Anderson http://www.andersonp...com/Default.asp and Vanness https://vanness1938.com/.  Both have great service and stellar reputations.

 

Purchased my first bottle of R&K Salix from Anderson's yesterday.  Haven't tried it yet.  How do yo like it?

Hi Tasmith,

 

Glad to hear that you are enjoying your Akkerman #10.  Resistant to water/smear/erasure, no feathering or bleeding, and dark gray to black all sound fantastic!  I plan on ordering some when it comes back into stock.

 

I am enjoying R&K Salix, as it's a great ink.  There's lots of good reviews here that cover the behaviors and characteristics of Salix, so I won't regurgitate them excessively here.  It's great for the two use-cases for which I employ it:  marginal notations with an EF (minimal to nonexistent bleed/feather/spread on cheap paper) and signatory work with B/BB/C nib (water resistant blue ink).  No issues with clogging or sedimentation, but I do find that first attempts at writing each morning produce brief virga until the ink starts flowing.  I wouldn't call it "hard starting" at this point but the first centimeter of nib-paper contact does not lay down ink when the pen has been idle for several hours.  Once the ink starts flowing it's good from there.  For desk use I store my inked pens upright in an acrylic stand like this: https://www.fasttech...for-ego-battery.  Maybe I should store them lying flat to avoid the virga issue.

 

I now find myself needing a black or near-black signatory ink.  Since I have had such good performance from Salix, I'm looking for another Iron Gall ink that meets the new color requirements.  If I'm unable to find one, then maybe I'll need to consider pigmented inks (maybe Kiwa Guro or R&K Dokumentus) or perhaps cellulose-reactive (such as Noodler's Bulletproof or Warden series).


Edited by bigkahuna, 05 March 2017 - 01:57.


#6 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 01:53

Know these are not Iron Gall, yet take a look at Carbon nano particle inks. Both Platinum and Sailor have Black Carbon ink that are very water resistant, black and archival. Find to be well behaved, have proven to be light fast.

Hi Aderoy,

 

Acknowledged and thank you for the input.  I'll look at these as well.  Have you experienced any problems with clogging, sedimentation or deposits when using these?



#7 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 01:55

Blackstone's Barrister Blue is a very dark blue Iron-Gall (technically ferro-tannate) ink that quickly turns darker as it dries.

 

It's available from Anderson Pens in the US

Hi dcwaites,

 

Barrister Blue looks awesome.  I'll check it out.  Thank you!

 

Edited to add:  Just checked Anderson Pens... out of stock.   Daaangiiiiit!


Edited by bigkahuna, 05 March 2017 - 01:59.


#8 Tasmith

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 02:46

Hi Tasmith,

 

Glad to hear that you are enjoying your Akkerman #10.  Resistant to water/smear/erasure, no feathering or bleeding, and dark gray to black all sound fantastic!  I plan on ordering some when it comes back into stock.

 

I am enjoying R&K Salix, as it's a great ink.  

 

 For desk use I store my inked pens upright in an acrylic stand like this: https://www.fasttech...for-ego-battery.  Maybe I should store them lying flat to avoid the virga issue.

 

 Noodler's Bulletproof or Warden series).

Hi Bigkahuna,

 

I find Akkerman #10 looks darker when dry on cheaper paper than Rhodia, black on Moleskine, and dark gray with black shading on the Tomoe River paper in my Hobonichi planner.  I'm finding it to be a very interesting ink.

 

Thank you for sharing your experience with R&K Salix.

 

The vape holder looks cool!  May have to investigate getting one for pens.  I keep my pens stored nib up, so to help prevent hard starting I'll set them down on their side for a few minutes before writing with them.

 

If you're considering Noodler's X-Feather, I find it has a tendency to smudge.  I stopped using it for calligraphy for this reason.



#9 inkstainedruth

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 20:14

I have both Akkerman #10 and KWZI IG Blue-Black.  Checking my notes, I would say that the Akkerman goes almost black but sort of grayish (at least on the cheap paper in a Piccadilly sketchbook) while the KWZI IG Blue-black is a bit bluer, but possibly a bit darker overall (fortunately, my two review/tests were in the same sketchbook, so presumably the paper is the same -- I've noticed that the paper in one of the other Piccadilly books is a lot more cream colored).

I"ll try to get scans up of both pages up so you can see the difference.  I like both of them, BTW.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth


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#10 tinta

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 20:22

Old formula Montblanc blue/black ink (IG), when written with a wet stub or CI. & fully cured is almost black.  It is for that reason that I seldom use it.  I have limited use for black ink.


Edited by tinta, 05 March 2017 - 20:24.

*Sailor 1911S, Black/gold, 14c. 0.8 mm. stub(JM) *1911S blue "Colours", 14c. H-B "M" BLS (PB) *2 Sailor 1911-M Burgundy/gold pens: 14c. 0.6 mm. "round-nosed" CI (MM) & 1.1 mm. CI (JM) *Sailor Pro-Gear Slim Spec. Ed. "Fire",14c. (factory) "H-B" *2 Kaweco SPECIAL fountain pens: 14c."M" "B",-0.5 mm & 0.7 mm stubs (PB) *Kaweco Stainless Steel Lilliput, 14c "B" -0.6 mm. stub (PB) *Montblanc 254, 14c. "BB" (1.1 mm?) flügelfeder factory stub

#11 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 20:30

I have both Akkerman #10 and KWZI IG Blue-Black.  Checking my notes, I would say that the Akkerman goes almost black but sort of grayish (at least on the cheap paper in a Piccadilly sketchbook) while the KWZI IG Blue-black is a bit bluer, but possibly a bit darker overall (fortunately, my two review/tests were in the same sketchbook, so presumably the paper is the same -- I've noticed that the paper in one of the other Piccadilly books is a lot more cream colored).

I"ll try to get scans up of both pages up so you can see the difference.  I like both of them, BTW.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

Hi Ruth,

 

Thank you for sharing your experiences with these inks.  I'd love to see the scans whenever you get the chance to post them :)



#12 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 20:33

Old formula Montblanc blue/black ink (IG), when written with a wet stub or CI. & fully cured is almost black.  It is for that reason that I seldom use it.  I have limited use for black ink.

Hi tinta,

 

Thanks for that.  Is this ink still in circulation somewhere as NOS?  My fear is that it has been superseded by the newer MB Permanent inks, and that MB IG ink is no longer in the supply chain.  



#13 tinta

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 21:11

Hi tinta,

 

Thanks for that.  Is this ink still in circulation somewhere as NOS?  My fear is that it has been superseded by the newer MB Permanent inks, and that MB IG ink is no longer in the supply chain.

  My bottle was purchased perhaps five/six years ago, at the Toronto MB Boutique.    I don't know where this ink can be had,  as a NOS, but I do know that it has been discontinued in favour of MB's "Permanent" inks.   Montblanc no longer makes an IG content ink.


*Sailor 1911S, Black/gold, 14c. 0.8 mm. stub(JM) *1911S blue "Colours", 14c. H-B "M" BLS (PB) *2 Sailor 1911-M Burgundy/gold pens: 14c. 0.6 mm. "round-nosed" CI (MM) & 1.1 mm. CI (JM) *Sailor Pro-Gear Slim Spec. Ed. "Fire",14c. (factory) "H-B" *2 Kaweco SPECIAL fountain pens: 14c."M" "B",-0.5 mm & 0.7 mm stubs (PB) *Kaweco Stainless Steel Lilliput, 14c "B" -0.6 mm. stub (PB) *Montblanc 254, 14c. "BB" (1.1 mm?) flügelfeder factory stub

#14 Arkanabar

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 21:39

Platinum has released a new line of IG inks, that they call their "Classic" inks.



#15 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 21:45

Platinum has released a new line of IG inks, that they call their "Classic" inks.

Thanks Arkanabar.  I'll check it out.  



#16 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 21:48

Know these are not Iron Gall, yet take a look at Carbon nano particle inks. Both Platinum and Sailor have Black Carbon ink that are very water resistant, black and archival. Find to be well behaved, have proven to be light fast.

Hi Aderoy,

 

Based on your recommendation I did a little searching for information on these carbon nano-particle inks.  Very interesting stuff!  I decided to jump in with both feet and bought a bottle (not a sample) of Sailor Kiwa Guro.  Should be here in a couple of days, and I'll test it out.  Thanks again!



#17 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 22:11

  My bottle was purchased perhaps five/six years ago, at the Toronto MB Boutique.    I don't know where this ink can be had,  as a NOS, but I do know that it has been discontinued in favour of MB's "Permanent" inks.   Montblanc no longer makes an IG content ink.

Hi tinta,

 

Bummer that MB no longer makes an IG ink.  I did a little searching on the new MB permanent inks to see if they are worth trying.  What I found was frightening... especially this post:  

 

http://www.fountainp...-loss-of-trust/

 

I confess that a testimony such as this makes me apprehensive of the new stuff.  If I can find any NOS bottles of the old MB IG ink I will be sure to snatch it up.  Thanks again.


Edited by bigkahuna, 06 March 2017 - 02:22.


#18 JakobS

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Posted 05 March 2017 - 22:45

IG ink is invisible until it is oxidized, in order to write with it before oxidization takes place a dye is added. Tradtionally, this dye was a light blue color that would fade away or into the oxidized black IG component once it was fully oxidized. The question then is why there has never been a commerical IG ink that starts with a black dye to begin with? Perhaps, this is because it might be thought as redundant since the ink will turn black after a period of time. With traditional IG inks made for dip pens, quills, reed pens etc, this oxidization process was rather quick, within minutes, thus an immediate black dye wont be important. With IG inks made for fountain pens possessing less IG component in them than those for dip pens the process can take time, and is very dependent upon how wet the ink flows on the paper. With a dry pen, Diamine Registrars (prob. Akkermann) can oxidize to a dark grey. With a wet pen, it can be dark black. Since there is no black dyed IG ink commerically available that I know of, you will need to look for one that oxidizes quickly. The quickest I have seen are with KWZ inks, but even then it will take atleast 24hrs to see the majority of the oxidation take place.

If you really want to start off with a black ink and have it be archival, your best bet would be micro pigmanted inks suggested above. But, if you can handle a little blue starting out I would go with either KWZ Blue Black, or Diamine Registrars in nib with medium (6-7 out 10) wetness. A dark blue black that I like is KWZ Turquoise, which starts out turquoise but oxidizes to a beautiful dark blue black.

Overall, I find KWZ to be wetter than Diamine or R&K Scaboisa.

Edited by JakobS, 06 March 2017 - 13:35.

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#19 Big_Kahuna

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Posted 06 March 2017 - 02:21

IG ink is invisible until it is oxidized, in order to write with it before oxidization takes place a dye is added. Tradtionally, this dye was a light blue color that would fade away or into the oxidized black IG component once it was fully oxidized. The question then is why there has never been a commerical IG ink that starts with a black dye to begin with? Perhaps, this is because it might by thought as redundant since the ink will turn black after a period of time. With traditional IG inks made for dip pens, quills, reed pens etc, this oxidization process was rather quick, within minutes, thus an immediate black dye wont be important. With IG inks made for fountain pens possessing less IG component in them than those for dip pens the process can take time, and is very dependent upon how wet the ink flows on the paper. With a dry pen, Diamine Registrars (prob. Akkermann) can oxidize to a dark grey. With a wet pen, it can be dark black. Since there is no black dyed IG ink commerically available that I know of, you will need to look for one that oxidizes quickly. The quickest I have seen are with KWZ inks, but even then it will take atleast 24hrs to see the majority of the oxidation take place.

If you really want to start off with a black ink and have it be archival, your best bet would be micro pigmanted inks suggested above. But, if you can handle a little blue starting out I would go with either KWZ Blue Black, or Diamine Registrars in nib with medium (6-7 out 10) wetness. A dark blue black that I like is KWZ Turquoise, which starts out turquoise but oxidizes to a beautiful dark blue black.

Overall, I find KWZ to be wetter than Diamine or R&K Scaboisa.

Hi JakobS,

 

Thanks for the explanation and recommendations... I really appreciate it.  

 

Today I ordered a black nanopigmented ink (Sailor Kiwa Guro) based on some of the inputs in this thread; I also am awaiting delivery of KWZI Blue Black.  

 

The suggestion for KWZI Turquoise IG is interesting... I just looked up some videos and images of the ink, and it's amazing how it darkens from a medium-light turquoise into its dark blue-black state.  I wish I had added that to my last ink order.  I had better start building a "wish list" and set a budget for monthly ink orders.



#20 inkstainedruth

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Posted 08 March 2017 - 01:53

Sorry I didn't get these scanned and posted sooner (the last few days have been crazy) and I was just exhausted last night.

fpn_1488936623__akkerman_10_ijzer-galnot

 

fpn_1488936854__kwzi_ig_blue-black_detai

Hope the scans help.  The Akkerman has more shading, the KWZI is bluer, but also darker and more saturated looking.  The scans aren't the best, and I cropped out a lot of extraneous stuff, like little sketches and samples of similar inks; but they give a reasonable representation of what the two inks look like (even on crappy paper).

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

edited for typos (someone just came over to the house and my brain and fingers were not in sync...)


Edited by inkstainedruth, 08 March 2017 - 01:55.

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