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  1. I saw 50ml bottles of this ink going on clearance dirt-cheap, with no free shipping on offer but a fixed charge per order irrespective of its contents, so I took a big leap of faith and ordered eight bottles at once on a whim, hoping I'll like the ink. My initial reaction upon seeing it on paper up close was one of disappointment; my writing with it (produced with a very fine nib, of course) looked blue-grey without any violet or purple, and so I hadn't been much inclined to fill any of my pens with it. I've since tried it in nibs I don't really like writing with: Aurora Stub and Oblique (Medium?) nibs, and an 18K gold BB nib I bought also on a whim for a Pelikan M815 Metal-Striped pen I don't enjoy using. It turned out that this ink is quite nuanced, and the violet colour is there but subtle (yet not as subtle as, say, the purple undertone in Sailor Shikiori Chushu). With narrower lines it's difficult to see, but if you look closely enough, it's there, especially when viewed at a slight angle. Alas, my scanner is quite hopeless at picking up the true colour. On to the review: Colour: The scans of splats done on the Arttec Como Sketch Pad 210gsm and Canson Drawing 220 Pad 220gsm papers present the colour much better than the scans of the writing samples. I've marked out, in the 300dpi scanned image fragment above, two squares that best represent the complexity of what I see across most of the actual writing. For some reason on which I cannot yet zone in, on the odd occasion (say, 1% of the time at a wet-finger-in-the-air estimate), the ink marks will come out just blue-grey without any hint of violet, but that is rare. Flow and lubrication: Somewhat wet as in watery, coupled with long dry time; not slick at all and provides little lubrication. Feathering: Not observed on Rhodia DotPad 80g/m² paper, in spite of the ink feeling watery. Show-through: Negligible on Rhodia DotPad 80g/m² paper when written with a Fine nib; mild when written with a BB nib. Bleed-through: Short of doing triple passes over the same spot, there was no bleed-through on Rhodia DotPad 80g/m² paper. However, I did observe that on the Canson 220gsm paper, where the ink pooled there is significant bleed-through; but similarly big splats and heavy drops of ink on the Arttec Como 210gsm paper showed no bleed-through. That there are thin, faint blue haloes around the shapes on the Canson paper, while the perimeters dried to a slightly raised and faintly glossy crust on the Arttec paper, suggests that the Canson paper is rather more absorbent. Composition: From chromatography of the ink, it appears there are two main component dyes, and the turquoise component is keen to leave the pink-magenta component behind entirely if given the opportunity. I think that's why there is that faint blue (or turquoise) halo on the Canson paper, and in fact you'll see a little bit of that where I've done 10 ‘parallel’ vertical lines within a 5mm square area on Rhodia DotPad paper. Where I've inadvertently allowed two or three adjacent lines to touch each other, and gave room for the watery ink to pool across lines, you can see that little bit of blue stand out from the grey. Shading: Abundant where the ink marks are not too wet, apparent even when written with a Fine nib, and the transitions from lighter to darker shades are relatively smooth as opposed to demarcated. I've written a page of consecutive lines with deliberately shifting wetness, to show the range of the ink. (Unfortunately, as mentioned before, my scanner is hopeless at picking up the violet colour from that page of writing samples.) Sheen: None observed. I wouldn't call the raised perimeters (or rim, or crust) of dried excess ink on the Arttec paper sheen, even though they do reflect light in a colour that is different from either violet or blue-grey. If you rub those perimeters hard with the pad of your finger, they'll smear slightly. Water resistance: You'd still be able to read what was written if the page got wet and you patted it dry quickly; but after being under (a drop, streak, or bath, of) water for 4–5 minutes, the ink marks will be obliterated.
  2. Jamerelbe

    Blackstone Red Kunzea (Scented)

    This is the fourth of five reviews I'll be posting today and tomorrow, for one of six new inks about to be available from Just Write Pens / Blackstone Inks - so I'll keep it brief! The 'Scents of Australia' inks are made from similar components to the already-available 'Colours of Australia' line, and share their properties, with one key difference: all six inks are scented, with odours evocative of the Australian 'aromascape'. Here's a visual of the bottles that arrived last week (minus Australian Bush): http://i.imgur.com/LE5ZB3E.jpg Red Kunzea is formulated to resemble the flowers of the Kunzea ambigua plant - a tall shrub round in cool coastal areas of Australia. I'll let you read the hand-written reviews for more information - suffice to say this is a dark, saturated red - maybe half-a-shade lighter than Diamine Red Dragon. Its flow characteristics are great, and I haven't had problems with feathering and blessing - at least on the photocopier paper I used for the review. It doesn't appear to sheen, at least on the papers I've tried it on. A scan and photo of the review sheet: http://i.imgur.com/dShTykH.jpg http://i.imgur.com/4VcGHAT.jpg And a 'live' photo of the Water Test: http://i.imgur.com/QeOfsw5.jpg
  3. Jamerelbe

    Blackstone Blue Cypress (Scented)

    This is the second of five reviews I'll be posting today and tomorrow - for one of six new inks about to be available from Just Write Pens / Blackstone Inks. These inks arrived last week - an unexpected birthday present! The 'Scents of Australia' inks are made from similar components to the already-available 'Colours of Australia' line, and share their properties, with one key difference: all six inks are scented, with odours evocative of the Australian 'aromascape'! Here's a visual of the bottles that arrived last week (minus Australian Bush): http://i.imgur.com/LE5ZB3E.jpg An additional five inks were slated for release - and as of mid-June (the time I'm posting these reviews), the inks are ready to be released. Kevin kindly sent me full 30ml bottles of the five new inks - with permission both to test and to post reviews. I want to be up-front in acknowledging I haven't paid for these inks - but as with his previous releases, I've been really impressed with their colour, saturation and performance. Thus far, none of the 6 new inks show the problems I encountered early on with Uluru and, to a lesser extent, Daintree - both of which showed a tendency to become 'stringy' due to problems with the lubricant. These inks are well-behaved, smooth-flowing, richly coloured, and beautifully scented - and, in the case of the blue inks, are prone to produce a wonderful reddish sheen. Blue Cypress is on the same colour spectrum as Blue Gum - but whereas Blue Gum is a dark blue-green, Blue Cypress sits closer to the green end of the spectrum. The following are a scan and a photo - the 'true' colour probably sits somewhere in the middle (at last on my screen!). http://i.imgur.com/MeoPw7C.jpg http://i.imgur.com/MeoPw7C.jpg The sheen on Blue Cypress is pretty impressive - though I think Blue Gum may have a slight edge, based on my experience thus far? http://i.imgur.com/1cJLhCk.jpg Thanks to Kevin for providing these inks for free - I'll certainly be purchasing bottles down the track, when these are empty!
  4. Jamerelbe

    Blackstone Wild Orange (Scented)

    This is the third of five reviews I'll be posting today and tomorrow - for one of six new inks about to be available from Just Write Pens / Blackstone Inks. These inks arrived last week - an unexpected birthday present! The 'Scents of Australia' inks are made from similar components to the already-available 'Colours of Australia' line, and share their properties, with one key difference: all six inks are scented, with odours evocative of the Australian 'aromascape'. Here's a visual of the bottles that arrived last week (minus Australian Bush): http://i.imgur.com/LE5ZB3E.jpg The 'Colours of Australia' inks are available in 30 and 60 ml bottles (reusable polypropylene) which I've found to be non-reactive and airtight. For the enthusiast, they're also available in 250 and 1000 ml bottles. Right now, I'm only aware of the smaller bottles for the 'Scents of Australia' line, but I guess we'll soon see! Wild Orange is a darker, deeper shade of orange, as you'll see from the scan and photo below. I wouldn't call it a 'classic' orange - it ranges from a brownish orange in pens with less generous ink flow, to a dark burnt red. I really like the deep dark shade I get from my Fountain Pen Revolution flex pens! Thus far I haven't noticed any nib crud forming on my pens - but I haven't been using it for long enough, or in a wide enough range of pens, to be sure that won't be a problem. OK, here's the scan and photo: http://i.imgur.com/5rKCRJJ.jpg http://i.imgur.com/sqejSLB.jpg And here's the ink lifting off the page in the water test: http://i.imgur.com/c7WNgrU.jpg
  5. Jamerelbe

    Blackstone Blue Gum (Scented)

    A few months ago now, I received a surprise parcel in the mail - a set of ink samples from Kevin Watson of Just Write Pens / Blackstone Inks. Kevin explained that he was creating a new range of inks - 'Scents of Australia' - to supplement the existing 'Colours of Australia' line. Only one of the prototypes made it unchanged into the final lineup, and Kevin gave me permission to post a (p)review of the ink on FPN: Blackstone Australian Bush, a kind of eucalyptusy dark green with yellow overtones (check it out at https://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/topic/321420-blackstone-australian-bush-a-preview/). Here's a visual of the bottles (minus Australian Bush): http://i.imgur.com/LE5ZB3E.jpg An additional five inks were slated for release - and as of mid-June (the time I'm posting these reviews), the inks are ready to be released. Kevin kindly sent me full 30ml bottles of the five new inks - with permission both to test and to post reviews. I want to be up-front in acknowledging I haven't paid for these inks - but as with his previous releases, I've been really impressed with their colour, saturation and performance. Thus far, none of the 6 new inks show the problems I encountered early on with Uluru and, to a lesser extent, Daintree - both of which showed a tendency to become 'stringy' due to problems with the lubricant. These inks are well-behaved, smooth-flowing, richly coloured, and beautifully scented - and, in the case of the blue inks, are prone to produce a wonderful reddish sheen. Without further ado, here's a scan and photo of the first of these inks - Blue Gum: http://i.imgur.com/7UEJ00L.jpg http://i.imgur.com/VrjLe0J.jpg These inks aren't particularly waterfast - here's a 'live' photo of the water test: http://i.imgur.com/kKSeAAF.jpg And here's a visual of four of the inks on Tomoe River paper - note the sheen on the blue/green inks: http://i.imgur.com/1cJLhCk.jpg I'm really pleased with how these inks have turned out, and wish Kevin every success in producing and distributing them. Any questions you'd like to ask about the inks, I'm more than happy to answer!
  6. This is the sixth and final ink in the soon-to-be-released 'Scents of Australia' series from Blackstone Inks / Just Write Pens - with thanks to Kevin Watson for providing me with these inks to sample and review! I try to be as impartial as I can in reviewing these products, but want to again acknowledge up-front that these were provided free - and that I really appreciate what Just Write / Blackstone are trying to do (especially) for the Australian fountain pen market. http://i.imgur.com/LE5ZB3E.jpg When Kevin first sent me three prototype samples, this ink was one of them - though it had a different scent at the time, and a different suggested name. He asked me to hold off on writing a review till I received the ready-for-market product, but the only thing that's changed is the scent. I've had this ink in one pen or another since April, and can confirm that it's consistent in its performance, has no unexpected crudding, drying, slow-starting or other issues - it's just a very reliable, well-lubricated, moderately-saturated ink. This won't be everyone's cup of tea (or mocha?) - it's a brown ink, and not everyone is keen on brown for starters! I'd characterise it as a yellow-gold leaning brown, whereas most of my other browns (Visconti Brown excepted) lean towards red. From the comparisons available to me, I'd say it's closest to KWZ Honey, though a little darker and less yellow. Please forgive the scrawled lettering of this scan - I'm back to work for the week (Mondays are my regular day off), so had to put this together in a hurry... Scan and photo of the review sheet: http://i.imgur.com/sKgJaJH.jpg http://i.imgur.com/3GdXX9Y.jpg Water test, showing the ink lifting off the page into the water droplets: http://i.imgur.com/lvlAyb8.jpg And lastly, Brown Boronia on Tomoe River paper - beautiful colour, but no sheen, no-how... http://i.imgur.com/0e4xY26.jpg As always, comments and/or questions are welcome - let me know if I've failed to mention anything important!
  7. Jamerelbe

    Blackstone Barrister Black

    A couple of months ago I received a sample vial of Blackstone Barrister Black, and have had one of my pens (a TWSBI Diamond 580) constantly inked with it ever since. I didn't know at the time that it was nano-pigement based, only that it was supposed to be permanent (and may require more frequent flushing to be safe). I've actually found it to be a very well-behaved ink - good flow, minimal clogging, fantastic waterproofness. A little slow-drying, and sometimes needs a little 'encouragement' to get started writing after a weekend layoff, but otherwise I'm really impressed.. I'll try and upload some photos of papers that I've soaked later - for now, I'm attaching a scan and a photo of my review sheet. Scan: Photo: If you're wavering about trying this out, I'd suggest ordering a sample vial - available from JustWrite.com.au in Australia, or Anderson Pens in the US. My 30ml bottle (purchased out of my own funds) has just arrived - this'll be one of my two go-to Black inks for the foreseeable future!
  8. Cyber6

    Robert Oster - Khaki

    I am sure you've seen several Robert Oster Signature Inks reviews... This one is more a drawing review. Khaki is a lovely color, and it washes beautifully... The line work was done with G nib (dip pen) and the paper is Bristol (Vellum finish). The ink is not waterproof, but is saturated enough to provide great shading. Dries quickly and overall is very easy to work with. The author of the drawing below is my artist-in-residence. DISCLAIMER: The portrait is not representative of Robert Oster's good looks... We haven't met the man. ................ (yet!!)
  9. Jamerelbe

    Blackstone Daintree Green

    OK, here's another review of one of the Blackstone "Colours of Australia" inks produced by JustWrite.com.au - Daintree Green. For those of you who don't know, the Daintree is a rain forestsituated in north east Queensland - the largest tropical rainforest on the Australian continent. Which means that there's green - lots of green. This is actually a pretty nice green ink. I think I'd expect a rainforest to be a bit darker - but maybe I'm just showing how long ago it was that I studied Geography, Ecology and, ummm, Botany. No matter, it's a nice mid-range green ink - and it even sheens a bit in a nice broad nib (on Tomoe River paper, anyway!). Here's a scan (needs colour correction - the ink isn't quite as dark as this!): And a photo (taken with my Sony smartphone) - I think this is a little more accurate: And a macro close-up of Daintree Green on Tomoe River paper:
  10. Just got an email from Robert Oster Signature Inks... A special for FPN members and Facebook.. (He is now on Facebook)... B) "For the current colour selection (minus Graphite and Black) at AU$7.64 per 50ml bottle plus shipping" Don't know if there is a time limit on this.. but this is better than the Paid for 6 bottles and get 7 deal at AU$9.99/bottle. :D C.
  11. I stumbled across Robert Oster and his signature inks on eBay recently, see here. This is the front of a rather ordinary copy paper - Australian Reflex from some years ago. It is somewhat absorbent, so the dry times are really fast. However, even on this paper, there is no feathering or spreading. I am showing the back of this scan to show that there is some spotting of bleed through that is visible, but they are otherwise a very well behaved inks. This is the front of a better quality paper, Fuji Xerox Sustainable Earth copy paper. It is no longer available, but it is comparable to Double A, Kokuyo Campus or Nakabayashi papers. You can see that shading is more prominent on this paper. I haven't shown a view of the back because there was nothing to see. No show-through, no bleeding, just white paper. This is Tomoe River paper, but given that the ink behaved so well on the FX paper, there is not much improvement here, however the dry times are substantially longer. This is the back of the TR paper, demonstrating the show-through that is synonymous with this paper. What looks like bleeding just above seems to be an artefact, as it is not visible on the paper. Other notes -- The ink is reasonably saturated, but seems to have little surfactant. The Bondi Blue in particular has a hard time wetting a freshly cleaned nib. The first scan, on the lined paper, was done with the two Jinhao 599 pens that came with the inks. The other scans were made with a #6 Chinese nib fitted into a dip pen holder. Currently the vendor only has international shipping options on one ink, the Yellow Sunset. I don't know if he is willing to add that to the other inks, but if you aren't in Australia, and you are interested in the inks, just ask him. The two inks I have tried here are worthy competitors to the Blackstone Colours of Australia inks from Justwrite in Brisbane - Sydney Harbour Blue and Barrier Reef Blue. I don't think it is a matter of either/or, but both.
  12. brendonsie

    Australian Sheaffer Snorkel

    Hi all Just thought i would share my latest find an Australian made Snorkel. I never knew that Sheaffer had a factory in Australia until now. Im guessing the pen is a Snorkel Valiant made in the late 50's however that is based off american made pens. Only thing i can say for certain is that the pen was given as a gift in 1968.
  13. Jamerelbe

    New Inks From Justwrite.com.au

    The long-awaited "Colours of Australia" ink range from Just Write Pens has finally arrived in-store - I placed my order on Wednesday, and look what arrived in my letterbox today! Reviews to follow in the appropriate forum, as I find the time...
  14. http://sheismylawyer.com/She_Thinks_In_Ink/Ink_Companies/Toucan/slides/Toucan_Magenta.jpghttp://sheismylawyer.com/She_Thinks_In_Ink/2014-Inklings/slides/2014-Ink_208.jpg http://sheismylawyer.com/She_Thinks_In_Ink/2014-Inklings/slides/2014-Ink_209.jpghttp://sheismylawyer.com/She_Thinks_In_Ink/2014-Inklings/slides/2014-Ink_210.jpg
  15. WestLothian

    Australian Statesman

    I was cleaning my Statesman when I noticed that the feed had wandered off centre compared to the nib. I decided to disassemble to realign this and give the pen a thorough cleaning at the same time. The feed is conveniently fitted with a screwdriver slot at the barrel end to help align this to the nib when it is tightened onto the threaded section. There were no signs of locking adhesive at the threads or the barrel, so I am assuming that this is not required and hand tightening and feed friction are sufficient to avoid any problems.





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