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Pilot Blue/black - Not Available In Bottles In The Uk - Why?

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#1 Mercian

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 16:52

Hi,

I would like to buy a bottle of Pilot Blue/Black ink, because I have read many complimentary things about it on here, but...
 
...I live in the UK, and it seems that Pilot won’t let us British types buy it in bottles  :(
 
The only bottled inks that Pilot will let us buy are the 60ml bottles of Namiki Blue or Namiki Black.
(Well ok, they do also sell the Iroshizuku ‘luxury’ inks here too. At much higher prices.)
 
AFAIK, there’s only one UK retailer that even sells Pilot Blue/Black in the IC100 pack of Pilot’s proprietary cartridges.
But proprietary cartridges aren’t much use to anyone who uses a piston-fill pen (e.g. a Pilot Custom Heritage 92), and nor are they much good to anyone who uses a Pilot ‘MR’.
(Pilot’s version of the Metropolitan for the European market; it is a Metro that has been ‘chambered’ for ‘Short International’ cartridges.)
 
Given that Pilot do sell the ‘Custom Heritage 92’ here, can anyone tell me definitively why they won’t sell Pilot Blue/Black in bottles to UK customers?
 
It can not be because the ink contains has been ‘Unpersoned’ at regulatory level (e.g. for containing an ingredient that is persona non grata), because if that were the case the cartridges would be off-limits to us too.
 
Are Pilot & Namiki perhaps two entirely-separate companies who have, after centuries of inter-Corporate feuding, agreed to a mutual-co-operation treaty for the European market that is policed by Weapons-grade Corporate lawyers, and in which Pilot have bound themselves to selling only Namiki’s bottled inks in Europe?
But then, Namiki don’t even sell a blue-black, and how would the Iroshizuku range be exempt from such an arrangement?
 
Are Pilot perhaps trying to push me towards buying the ink direct from Japan (from where I will also be able to buy a Custom Heritage 92 for much less than its UK RRP)?
 
My thanks in advance to anyone who can solve this mystery.
 
Cheers,
M.

 

 

Freedom is the freedom to say that two and two make four.


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#2 ehemem

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 21:25

Pilot inks are the same as Namiki inks. AAMOF, Pilot and Namiki are the same company doing business under different names and with different target audiences...


Edited by ehemem, 12 April 2019 - 21:28.


#3 BaronWulfraed

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Posted 12 April 2019 - 23:41

Pilot inks are the same as Namiki inks. AAMOF, Pilot and Namiki are the same company doing business under different names and with different target audiences...

 

And I have two Falcon pens... My first has the Namiki name splattered on it, the second has the Pilot name... I was under the impression that, at one point in time (2005 -- my first Falcon), the company had intended to drop the Pilot name and use the founder's name (as it had originally used, before changing to Pilot in the 30s). Apparently that fell through.



#4 Jerome Tarshis

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Posted 13 April 2019 - 05:55

The OP seems perfectly well aware that Pilot and Namiki are the same company. As for why the company doesn't sell its blue-black in bottles in the UK (assuming that that is true, which I haven't investigated), I can quote a frustrating though wise French saying, Il ne faut pas chercher a comprendre, which is to say, or advise, One must not seek to understand.

 

However, my business experience is confined to the United States, where the choices made by management are not always self-evidently rational. I am prepared to believe that everything in Great Britain is done for good and explainable reason. Japan is perhaps more like the United States, then.



#5 txomsy

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Posted 13 April 2019 - 09:42

Have you tried ordering the ink in Amazon US or eBay and having it delivered to UK?

 

Last I checked I could find listings labelled "worldwide delivery".

 

Perhaps it is not an issue with Pilot but with retailers.



#6 Karmachanic

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Posted 13 April 2019 - 11:00

Fountainfeder would be closer - lower shipping cost.


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#7 inkstainedruth

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 00:37

Perhaps it is not an issue with Pilot but with retailers.

 

I don't know about in the UK -- but my experiences with Pilot-USA is that they sometimes make "marketing decisions" which IMO are really boneheaded.  I don't know if it's them or corporate who were at fault.  But it's the reason that I didn't go through a US retailer in getting a Decimo -- I wanted a color that Pilot won't sell in this country for some bizarre reason.  And as a result of bypassing Pilot-USA, I saved myself money in the process.  Win for me, loss for Pilot-USA, and for the retailers who I would normally be supporting.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth


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#8 Old Salt

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 00:45

I don't know about in the UK -- but my experiences with Pilot-USA is that they sometimes make "marketing decisions" which IMO are really boneheaded.  I don't know if it's them or corporate who were at fault.  But it's the reason that I didn't go through a US retailer in getting a Decimo -- I wanted a color that Pilot won't sell in this country for some bizarre reason.  And as a result of bypassing Pilot-USA, I saved myself money in the process.  Win for me, loss for Pilot-USA, and for the retailers who I would normally be supporting.
Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth


Yup. Same here Ruth. Sometimes you have to go around them for their own good.

#9 A Smug Dill

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 22:23

Given that Pilot do sell the ‘Custom Heritage 92’ here, can anyone tell me definitively why they won’t sell Pilot Blue/Black in bottles to UK customers?


Only Pilot Corporation, or its authorised distributor for the UK, can answer your question "definitively", but yes, someone can. Have you written them to ask? Not that they're likely to give you an answer you find satisfactory, because root causes and business rationale are not generally considered something to be casually disclosed to interested (current or prospective) customers, either to appease or to invite further discussion (with the enterprise directly).

Sometimes, "we confirm it is a deliberate decision, and we are in a position to make that decision, so that is why no retailer officially carries stock of those product supplied by us," could well be the definitive (and correct) answer that confirms and explains your observation. Maybe that's the answer you'll get if you ask. Don't overthink it.

It's only if Pilot or its distributor came back to say the bottled inks in questions are in its UK market product catalogue, then you may want to take it up with individual UK retailers as to why they don't order and carry those items, with no "one-stop shop" for such information.


I'm a fountain pen enthusiast, but not your consultant (as a fellow consumer) to advise on getting better value-for-money from your discretionary spending or protecting your investment in the hobby. I like to share the particularly meritorious or disappointing traits of products I've used, through product reviews and replies to others' posts, but please don't expect (or ask) me to frame things specifically in terms of how it would apply to your choice of pens, inks and paper products, or satisfy your preferences for shading, sheen, wet, broad, cheap, et cetera.






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: pilot blue/black, blue black, blue-black, pilot, uk, blue/black



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