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How To Properly Store Iron Gall Ink?

iron gall ink storage

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27 replies to this topic

#1 Edo98

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Posted 01 April 2020 - 19:18

Hello :)

 

Today I come to ask you how an iron gall ink should be stored correctly since I have had inks of this type that when they come to me they look good but then they are precipitated in a short time.
 
For example, I had bought a large bottle of diamine registrars ink and emptied it into a 30 ml empty lamy ink bottle that had been washed very well and I refilled with a pen and it worked excellent without flow problems, I checked the bottle the following days and everything looked all right.
 
But on the fifth day the bottle looked ugly with things stuck on the walls and sludge on the bottom of the bottle, the pens that were used with the ink in that state do not write at the first stroke and little pressure and that is annoying since I write with a light hand.
 
I emptied a little more of the main bottle into an airtight bottle and it didn't look bad in that bottle but it didn't work well.
 
I checked the main bottle and at the bottom it was like a centimeter of precipitate well glued XD.
 
The same has happened to me with a bottle of essri that I had in the past that stuck these things on the walls of the bottle and hard starts.
 
From what I have noticed in my experience they arrive well but in a short time after I open them they begin to form that precipitate and consequently flow problems.
 
I keep them in dark drawers.
The climate where I live is hot and humid.
 
If someone knows a way to keep them in good condition for a longer time, I will gladly accept their advice, and more than today I just received 3 bottles of essri that I didn't even remember XD.
 
 By the way if you ask why I like these, it is that iron galls work so well on cheap paper but they expire quickly with me. :unsure:
fpn_1585768668__ig_precipitado.jpg


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#2 inkstainedruth

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Posted 01 April 2020 - 21:08

Wondering if the problem is that you didn't sterilize the bottle/bottle cap.  Or whether it's just a matter of the Lamy ink dregs that you didn't get out are interacting with the more acidic IG ink.

Years ago my husband did a lot of homebrewing, and he got really good at troubleshooting other people's batches that didn't come out right -- in nearly every case, it's because they forgot to sterilize something: the spatula stirring the wort; the siphon hose before transferring the wort into a carboy; the counter; etc.).  And he learned that this was a case where bleach wasn't the right thing, and he had to get this stuff called B-Brite, which is a strong oxidizer (it's hard to rinse bleach off and that could contaminate anything consumable... like beer; the advantage to B-Brite was that once you mixed it up with water and rinsed everything off with it, you knew you'd gotten it all off with water once the surfaces stopped feeling slippery).  People would say to him "But I cleaned my kitchen before I started..." and he'd say "Yes, but did you STERILIZE your kitchen?"

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#3 DipIt

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Posted 01 April 2020 - 21:39

I would amplify Ruth's commentary having gone through this sort of thing years ago. I can also say that there is a fungus that can hide out in the feed of a pen and infect everything it is dipped in.

About 50 years ago one of the high end companies distributed such a beast in their permanent black IG inks. It was apparently a spore former and very hard to get rid of.

Since that time, I use sterile secondary vials and designated pipettes for transfer. Nothing ever dips into the stock.

I even do this with nonIG ink. I got really paranoid.





















About 50 years ago one of the high end companies had an IG perm Black that apparently shipped with such a fungus. That was a real rodeo getting rid of.

#4 Edo98

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Posted 01 April 2020 - 22:22

Wondering if the problem is that you didn't sterilize the bottle/bottle cap.  Or whether it's just a matter of the Lamy ink dregs that you didn't get out are interacting with the more acidic IG ink.

Years ago my husband did a lot of homebrewing, and he got really good at troubleshooting other people's batches that didn't come out right -- in nearly every case, it's because they forgot to sterilize something: the spatula stirring the wort; the siphon hose before transferring the wort into a carboy; the counter; etc.).  And he learned that this was a case where bleach wasn't the right thing, and he had to get this stuff called B-Brite, which is a strong oxidizer (it's hard to rinse bleach off and that could contaminate anything consumable... like beer; the advantage to B-Brite was that once you mixed it up with water and rinsed everything off with it, you knew you'd gotten it all off with water once the surfaces stopped feeling slippery).  People would say to him "But I cleaned my kitchen before I started..." and he'd say "Yes, but did you STERILIZE your kitchen?"

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth

the lamy bottle I had washed it with tap water and then I put alcohol on it and let it dry.
and I washed the bottle that I put in the photo with dish soap and then I rinsed, but in that soap I think it had bleach.
So alcohol is not a good idea to sterilize my jars?
Do you have photos or links of that product or something that is useful to sterilize?


#5 Edo98

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Posted 01 April 2020 - 22:33

I would amplify Ruth's commentary having gone through this sort of thing years ago. I can also say that there is a fungus that can hide out in the feed of a pen and infect everything it is dipped in.

About 50 years ago one of the high end companies distributed such a beast in their permanent black IG inks. It was apparently a spore former and very hard to get rid of.

Since that time, I use sterile secondary vials and designated pipettes for transfer. Nothing ever dips into the stock.

I even do this with nonIG ink. I got really paranoid.





















About 50 years ago one of the high end companies had an IG perm Black that apparently shipped with such a fungus. That was a real rodeo getting rid of.

fungus in the pen feeder sounds pretty scary :unsure: , good thing i don't see anything weird about my other inkwells that are not iron gall.



#6 jmccarty3

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 01:51

A few days ago I got a bottle of Akkerman No. 10 iron gall blue black ink out. I hadn't disturbed this ink for a good many months. It didn't smell right, and there were numerous small particles that stuck to the sides of the bottle, that didn't dissolve with shaking. I tossed it, of course. With the hundreds of inks I have collected, and my limited ability to use them, this is to be expected, but I thought everyone should know to be careful with this ink.


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#7 kestrel

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 03:28

I would amplify Ruth's commentary having gone through this sort of thing years ago. I can also say that there is a fungus that can hide out in the feed of a pen and infect everything it is dipped in.

About 50 years ago one of the high end companies distributed such a beast in their permanent black IG inks. It was apparently a spore former and very hard to get rid of.

Since that time, I use sterile secondary vials and designated pipettes for transfer. Nothing ever dips into the stock.

I even do this with nonIG ink. I got really paranoid.





















About 50 years ago one of the high end companies had an IG perm Black that apparently shipped with such a fungus. That was a real rodeo getting rid of.

Fungus in a feed.  This was an Estie found at an antique store.

 

fpn_1585798001__pa200001_copy.jpg


Dave Campbell
Science Teacher and Pen Addict
Every day is a chance to reduce my level of ignorance.

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#8 GreenMountain

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 11:47

So if Archival Registrar's bottle is getting crud on the walls, I shouldn't use it by siphoning ink from the middle of the bottle into cartridges with a syringe?  Pitch it, eh?

Then how to prevent crud?  Sterilize the syringe?  Normally I clean syringes by rinsing them with tap water.  I don't re-dip the syringe once I use it, or squirt unused ink back into the bottle.



#9 amberleadavis

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 11:49

A few days ago I got a bottle of Akkerman No. 10 iron gall blue black ink out. I hadn't disturbed this ink for a good many months. It didn't smell right, and there were numerous small particles that stuck to the sides of the bottle, that didn't dissolve with shaking. I tossed it, of course. With the hundreds of inks I have collected, and my limited ability to use them, this is to be expected, but I thought everyone should know to be careful with this ink.

 

 

OH my, you didn't save the bottle?  IG particles fall out of suspension and never go back in.  That's not ink to use, but is wonderful to paint with or use for dipping.


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#10 amberleadavis

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 11:51

So if Archival Registrar's bottle is getting crud on the walls, I shouldn't use it by siphoning ink from the middle of the bottle into cartridges with a syringe?  Pitch it, eh?

Then how to prevent crud?  Sterilize the syringe?  Normally I clean syringes by rinsing them with tap water.  I don't re-dip the syringe once I use it, or squirt unused ink back into the bottle.

 

 

No wait, the crud is not necessarily slime.  For example my Pelikan Blue Black ink had NO slime or mold but the stuff that was on the side was actually particles that clogged my pen.  I would use the ink with dip pens or for painting but it wouldn't go in my pens.


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#11 jmccarty3

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 12:05

 

 

OH my, you didn't save the bottle?  IG particles fall out of suspension and never go back in.  That's not ink to use, but is wonderful to paint with or use for dipping.

 

Amberlea--

 

I was more concerned with the off smell of the ink. That's what made me decide to toss it.


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#12 amberleadavis

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 12:10

 

Amberlea--

 

I was more concerned with the off smell of the ink. That's what made me decide to toss it.

 

 

OH yes, the bad smell is totally an indicator - WARNING - do not use this ink.


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#13 GreenMountain

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 18:57

Thanks, Amberlea.  Then the rule is crud on the bottle, not in fountain pens. 



#14 inkstainedruth

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Posted 02 April 2020 - 21:47

 

the lamy bottle I had washed it with tap water and then I put alcohol on it and let it dry.
and I washed the bottle that I put in the photo with dish soap and then I rinsed, but in that soap I think it had bleach.
So alcohol is not a good idea to sterilize my jars?
Do you have photos or links of that product or something that is useful to sterilize?

 

 

https://www.northern...te-8-oz-298-298 (but my husband has a larger size bag of it).  Not sure where you're located, but check online for beer-brewing or possibly wine-making supplies in your area.

Now, to be fair, I don't know whether it's safe to use on something like a pen.  And it has occurred to me that while I'm pretty sure he just used tap water when mixing the powder up, I don't use tap water to flush my pens out (we have hard water where we live and I don't relish the thought of those mineral deposits gunning up a feed).

Ruth Morrisson aka inkstainedruth


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#15 fc2462

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Posted 06 April 2020 - 19:19

Edo98, you mentioned that the crud developed in the small bottle you transferred the ink to but, what about the original large bottle that the ink came in?  Did the crud develop in that as well?  If not, then it's obvious the previously used small bottle introduced some kind of contaminate right?



#16 Edo98

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Posted 06 April 2020 - 21:37

Edo98, you mentioned that the crud developed in the small bottle you transferred the ink to but, what about the original large bottle that the ink came in?  Did the crud develop in that as well?  If not, then it's obvious the previously used small bottle introduced some kind of contaminate right?

The main bottle looked good but in weeks it caused a lot of sediment, right now I have some new bottles of essri ink and it looks like the following photo:

fpn_1586208787__img_2311.jpg



#17 Edo98

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Posted 06 April 2020 - 21:42

This new bottle, It looks with those things on the walls of the bottle but it worked well with a pen without flow problems, etc. but when putting that small amount of ink in an empty glass bottle the same thing happened in a few days, it came out sediment and floating things but instead the ink that was inside the pen was in perfect condition.



#18 fc2462

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Posted 06 April 2020 - 21:57

Hmm, very strange.  I have bottles of Diamine Registrar's ink that are years old and don't have that problem.



#19 Arkanabar

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Posted 08 April 2020 - 19:29

Remember that IG inks work by oxidizing to form an insoluble, solid, dark precipitate.  As it happens, sodium hypochlorite (bleach) will almost instantly turn that precipitate colorless.  Get a sample of your grit and test it.

No promises that it isn't also SITB, though.



#20 tinta

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Posted 22 April 2020 - 03:02

A few days ago I got a bottle of Akkerman No. 10 iron gall blue black ink out. I hadn't disturbed this ink for a good many months. It didn't smell right, and there were numerous small particles that stuck to the sides of the bottle, that didn't dissolve with shaking. I tossed it, of course. With the hundreds of inks I have collected, and my limited ability to use them, this is to be expected, but I thought everyone should know to be careful with this ink.

My first bottle of Akkerman  #10 (perhaps 8 yrs old) developed dark blotches inside the (lower) ink compartment.  As I swirled the ink around, I noticed a wide black ring around the inside of the bottle.  This ink did not smell right.

 

One of the 1st gen. large bottles,  I planned to re-use it in some way, once the ink would be finished.

I dumped the ink, but was determined to clean the inside of this unusual bottle. With its iconic marble removed, I proceeded to scrub the inside with various brushes.  Some of the black residue lifted, but not what was stuck to the bottom.

 

Over the winter I poured used Pen Flush into the Akkerman bottle to try to soak off the stains.  A little more gunk was removed with this ammonia solution but still the bottom remained stained.  Every couple weeks I'd invert the bottle.

 

Lee Valley Tools (no affiliation), my "adult toy store" has some interesting gadgets for the household.  In one of their catalogues I saw a bottle/ vase cleaning "tool" that uses small stainless steel bearings to help scrub the bottom or the sides of these containers.  A bunch of bearings & a small sieve.  I can do that.

Being in self isolation because of CVD19, I couldn't go out to a hardware store, however I knew I had a bunch of copper, brass & tungsten beads to tie my bead-head fly patterns.  The fact that these were drilled beads not stainless ball-bearings did not make any difference.

 

So,...I poured some fresh pen flush into this bottle then added the metal beads of various sizes.  As I swished these heavy beads around & round, like magic, :yikes: the gunk started lifting off the inner surface of the bottle.  All I had to do was to strain all the beads into a small sieve, rinse & dry them,  then replace the beads back into my fly-tying stash.  Voila!

 

Now, my old large Akkerman bottle serves to hold my Pen Flush solution.  The "ink filling chamber" is used in the same way with the pen flush as it was with the ink,  by turning the bottle upside down to fill the chamber with fresh flushing solution.

 

Now my fresh bottle of Akkerman #10 ink is in a smaller 60 ml bottle (also with filling chamber).   I try to get this ink into my iron-gall ink rotation so that I can keep an eye on it.  It's stored in a cool, dark place.


Edited by tinta, 22 April 2020 - 21:47.

*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





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