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Diamine Earl Grey Too Light?

diamine jinhao fine nib rhodia

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21 replies to this topic

#1 linkoiram

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 05:47

I have diamine earl grey inked up in a jinhao 51a with the unhooded nib as well as a moonman m2 knockoff "hyl" pen, both fine nibs. After some worn on the 51a nib it writes somewhat wetter than it did initially, but I still find the ink to be too light almost to the point of skipping. On hp 24 lb laser paper it is fine, but on rhodia 80gsm dotpad paper the line is dry and looks scratchy and too light. I tried changing converters and cleaning the jinhao but after the hyl had similar problems I think I've found the particular combination of nib size, paper, and possibly pen that doesn't show up well with this ink. Is this just something I have to accept, although I don't really want to because I really like this ink and those pens. Maybe something is to be learned here about light inks, less absorbent paper, and fine nibs.

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#2 alexander_k

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 06:20

In my experience, Earl Grey is on the dark side - not as light as Diamine Grey or Silver Fox. It's also rather dry for a Diamine ink, so this could explain your problems. My last pen with Earl Grey is Sheaffer Legacy with a fine nib. It has excellent flow but on some kinds of paper it delivers too little ink. Another Legacy, with a medium nib, was much better, while a third one, with a stub, was a bit too dry for my taste. 



#3 linkoiram

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 06:25

In my experience, Earl Grey is on the dark side - not as light as Diamine Grey or Silver Fox. It's also rather dry for a Diamine ink, so this could explain your problems. My last pen with Earl Grey is Sheaffer Legacy with a fine nib. It has excellent flow but on some kinds of paper it delivers too little ink. Another Legacy, with a medium nib, was much better, while a third one, with a stub, was a bit too dry for my taste. 


Interesting, might have to stay away from the rhodia with this one, any experience with diamine graphite? Is it lighter or darker in general? I see comparisons and it just looks like a greener tint, no change in how dark it appears. Earl grey works well on kokuyo campus notebooks as well, must be the rhodia.

#4 lapis

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 12:23

My Earl Grey disappointed me. Lighter and thinner and drier than what I had expected.

Thus (due to its dryness and/or poor lubrication) it skipped a bit, too. That has nothing to do with its lightness/darkness and/or saturation.


Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)


#5 linkoiram

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 18:26

My Earl Grey disappointed me. Lighter and thinner and drier than what I had expected.
Thus (due to its dryness and/or poor lubrication) it skipped a bit, too. That has nothing to do with its lightness/darkness and/or saturation.


Any other inks similar that you would recommend? I'm thinking of sampling the two greyish iroshizuku inks and diamine graphite to find a grey I like.

#6 linkoiram

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 18:46

What puzzles me is if it is a dry performing ink, why do so many of the reviews for the ink fail to mention this?

#7 essayfaire

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 18:47

Herbin Stormy Grey?  I tried Earl Grey,  Robert Oster graphite and the Herbin, and decided that the Earl Grey worked the best in my Japanese F nibs.  I thought the Oster looked super-light (though it didn't when I tried it in a .5 nib).  The Earl Grey actually seemed more saturated.  I haven't tried the Pilot Kiri-same, but that looks as if it might be what you're looking for.


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#8 inkstainedruth

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 19:53

I didn't find Earl Grey to be too dry (and at one point I had it in the Sailor Pro-Gear Slim with the zoom nib, which is a little futzy sometimes).  I also agree with the comment about it being a darker grey than stuff like Diamine Grey.  

I haven't tried Kiri-same, but I found Fuyu-Syogen to be very drippy, and also showing up better on the page in a wider nib.  As for J Herbin Gris Nuage, it also needs a wider nib, IMO, because it's so light otherwise as to be somewhat illegible on the page.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth. 


"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

#9 evyxmsj

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Posted 03 February 2020 - 11:31

I love the colour, how it goes down cool grey and dries on the warm side.

 

However, I find myself instinctively troubleshooting my writing (pressing harder, rolling the nib) as I go. I think it't the combination of being dry compared to most of my inks plus being light in shade. Not as bad as Autumn Oak for me, but it's enough that I'll only put it in my gushers now.



#10 Lgsoltek

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Posted 03 February 2020 - 13:10

I do find it dry and lack of lubrication.

#11 gpsgrandpa

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Posted 04 February 2020 - 01:20

Interesting, might have to stay away from the rhodia with this one, any experience with diamine graphite? Is it lighter or darker in general? I see comparisons and it just looks like a greener tint, no change in how dark it appears. Earl grey works well on kokuyo campus notebooks as well, must be the rhodia.

 

My experience with Graphite is that it is not what I would call a gray color and is much closer to a black. I didn't particularly like Earl Grey and also found it disappointing. The Diamine Graphite though I liked very much. I'm not sure if it's my aging eyes or lighting in the house but all the light colored inks just don't seem to work for me.



#12 alexander_k

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Posted 07 February 2020 - 19:15

Interesting, might have to stay away from the rhodia with this one, any experience with diamine graphite? Is it lighter or darker in general? I see comparisons and it just looks like a greener tint, no change in how dark it appears. Earl grey works well on kokuyo campus notebooks as well, must be the rhodia.

 

Earl Grey and Graphite are quite similar in my experience. Graphite has a hint of green in it and probably slightly better flow (but that, of course, depends on the pen as well). 



#13 minddance

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Posted 07 February 2020 - 23:11

actually, yes. Diamine Earl Grey is a tad light for me in some of my everyday pens, which are Fine and ExtraFine Japanese nibs. I write lightly and rather quickly. If I were pressed, I'd say Earl Grey does not work in these pens for me. It is not a naturally-blissful pairing. Of course, I could put in effort for it to work, by using more absorbent papers, keep priming the feed, write slowly and deliberately, less joined strokes, etc. But this is not my natural and most comfortable writing style.

Diamine Graphite, on the other hand, more readily produces the appearance and degree of legibility I want than Earl Grey in these pens of mine.

#14 goodpens

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Posted 07 February 2020 - 23:27

Any other inks similar that you would recommend? I'm thinking of sampling the two greyish iroshizuku inks and diamine graphite to find a grey I like.

 

Earl Grey worked very well for me--dark enough and not too dry.

 

Currently using a (sample) of Levenger Smokey. Great flow, beautiful color. Dark enough in a M nib. The sample was a a gift to me and I don't believe the color is still in production anymore. 

 

Noodler's Lexington Grey is a great option--if you want a waterproof option. I find it well behaved, but I know that opinions of it vary. 

 

J. Herbin Storm Grey, a shimmer ink, is *beautiful* and flowed very well in my Lamy Safari F. Definitely not a light grey. 



#15 inkstainedruth

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Posted 08 February 2020 - 04:06

I just inked up a pen with Noodler's Lexington Gray, and it's a much lighter color grey than I was expecting it would be.  Mind you, I'm currently using it on crummy absorbent paper....

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth


"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

#16 goodpens

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Posted 08 February 2020 - 12:27

The Great Grey Fountain Pen Ink Comparison:

https://fountainpenl...ink-comparison/

#17 gpsgrandpa

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Posted 08 February 2020 - 16:06

The Great Grey Fountain Pen Ink Comparison:

https://fountainpenl...ink-comparison/

 

That is an amazing resource of grey inks!



#18 essayfaire

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 18:38

The Great Grey Fountain Pen Ink Comparison:

https://fountainpenl...ink-comparison/

Wow!  Now I'm curious about one called Akkerman 29 Hafvijer Gris.  I've never heard of the company. That chart could have saved me a lot of testing.


Festina lente


#19 inkstainedruth

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Posted 09 February 2020 - 20:32

Akkerman ink is from a store in The Hague (you can't even get it in the Akkerman store in Amsterdam, supposedly, because of a family feud.  But you can get them in the US from both Vanness Pens and Anderson Pens (couldn't tell you about other countries and the availability of Akkerman inks).

There has been conjecture that the ink is made for them by Diamine, but they're definitely NOT just relabeled inks the way the old Chesterfield inks sold by Xfountainpens.com (now Birmingham Pens) were.  I have tried both Diamine Registers Blue Black and Akkerman Izjer-Galnoten.  And they are definitely not the same formulation.  I've heard that other "similar" colors between the two brands have different consistencies as well, in that the Akkerman "version" is more lubricated than the Diamine's so-called counterpart.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

ETA: Akkerman has two lines: their regular inks and their "DutchMasters" series, the inks of which are named after various famous Dutch Old Masters.  I haven't tried all the inks of either line (don't remember if DM has a grey in it).

One of the best parts of Akkerman inks is the bottles.  They have a sort of built in inkwell in the bottle's neck: there's a part where the glass nips in like on an hourglass, and then in the section of neck above it, there's a flat glass (I think) bead.  When you tip the closed bottle, ink will go into the upper part of the neck, and then when you upright the bottle, that ink will be still in there because the bead has acted as a stopper.  I've seen posts in the past from people going "Where can I get empty Akkerman bottles?" and they generally get laughed at and told "Yeah, good luck with that...."


Edited by inkstainedruth, 09 February 2020 - 20:38.

"It's very nice, but frankly, when I signed that list for a P-51, what I had in mind was a fountain pen."

#20 essayfaire

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Posted 11 February 2020 - 17:40



, in that the Akkerman "version" is more lubricated than the Diamine's so-called counterpart.

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

 

ETA: Akkerman has two lines: their regular inks and their "DutchMasters" series, the inks of which are named after various famous Dutch Old Masters.  I haven't tried all the inks of either line (don't remember if DM has a grey in it).

One of the best parts of Akkerman inks is the bottles.  They have a sort of built in inkwell in the bottle's neck: there's a part where the glass nips in like on an hourglass, and then in the section of neck above it, there's a flat glass (I think) bead.  When you tip the closed bottle, ink will go into the upper part of the neck, and then when you upright the bottle, that ink will be still in there because the bead has acted as a stopper.  I've seen posts in the past from people going "Where can I get empty Akkerman bottles?" and they generally get laughed at and told "Yeah, good luck with that...."

 

 

 

 

Thanks for the tip!  I think I may have to try some.  A bit more lubricated could be okay, though I don't care for inks as lubricated as the Monteverdes.


Festina lente






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