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Which Brands Of Ink Might Have The Longest Shelf Life?



Margana

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A thread about SITB made me curious about which brands of ink still contain phenol or another effective biocide. The EU's rules for the manufacture of inks has affected a few brands though new formulations seem to have improved recent batches. While I have had a few bottles go bad, never has that happened with Noodler's, Diamine, or any Japanese ink in my collection. Nor has it happened with ink in my collection manufactured five to ten years ago.

 

There is no intent to bash any ink but rather to find ink that, if stored for an extended length of time, is most likely to remain untainted. Parker Penman ink is a good example. It was only manufactured from 1993-2000 which predates any government tinkering. My stash remains viable with the exception of one bottle of Ruby that arrived partially used and containing SITB. The former owner was the culprit in that case.

 

So who is making the good stuff now?

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A thread about SITB made me curious about which brands of ink still contain phenol or another effective biocide. The EU's rules for the manufacture of inks has affected a few brands though new formulations seem to have improved recent batches. While I have had a few bottles go bad, never has that happened with Noodler's, Diamine, or any Japanese ink in my collection. Nor has it happened with ink in my collection manufactured five to ten years ago.

 

There is no intent to bash any ink but rather to find ink that, if stored for an extended length of time, is most likely to remain untainted. Parker Penman ink is a good example. It was only manufactured from 1993-2000 which predates any government tinkering. My stash remains viable with the exception of one bottle of Ruby that arrived partially used and containing SITB. The former owner was the culprit in that case.

 

So who is making the good stuff now?

 

i try to use vintage inks when possible, quink and skrip (phenol)---never had a problem---2nd is herbin inks, also never had a problem, but i've seen ongoing issues periodically mentioned in this forum--havent had a problem w/ MB inks either, and my new favorite, swift seaweed, is a really good ink--- judging from its properties, and my experience with it so far, i dont anticipate any problems

 

however--i've had 3 bottles of different color diamine inks go bad within 2 years---but evidently, i'm the only one, as i havent seen any complaints registered here...anyone?

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I have handled about 30 different Diamines over the past two years and they have all been perfect.

 

Often, unless you are very vigilant, multiple bottles affected by SITB in a short timeframe probably stem from a single cross-contamination event (the issues that J Herbin went through excepted).

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I have handled about 30 different Diamines over the past two years and they have all been perfect.

 

Often, unless you are very vigilant, multiple bottles affected by SITB in a short timeframe probably stem from a single cross-contamination event (the issues that J Herbin went through excepted).

With only three incidents of SITB in ten years plus several questionable bottles from a single manufacturer in the same shipment (not JH), my experience with ink contamination is limited. Sometimes I purchase multiples and store them for extended periods, thus my question of shelf life. If an ink contains a reliable biocide, it should last longer than one that does not. If an ink will get used up in a couple of months, the biocide is less important.

 

Inks that are subject to degradation would be relevant, too. With as many inks as I have, the ones that are least likely to live long should get used up before meeting an untimely end like getting poured down the drain. Such an ignominious end for a once beautiful fountain pen ink.

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I find that Noodler's is quite resistant to SITB. However, you should stick with the conventional (non-bulletproof/eternal) type of inks. The bulletproof ones are more likely to break down with time, and especially if exposed to air.

 

Dark Matter would be a good choice if you want something permanent.

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Hi,

 

It seems to me this is going to be a work in progress as the EU-based ink producers come into compliance with regulations, and those products are sent out into the wild to fend for themselves.

 

It also remains to be seen if inks manufactured outside of the EU, whose ingredients are not compliant with EU regs, will be modified to allow their sale into the EU market; or if not modified, EU distribution would cease. e.g. Pelikan stopped distribution of their Blue-Black into North America as one ingredient was not on a 'safe' list.

 

If the wee stickers that seal the Montblanc boxes are a reasonably accurate prediction, then it seems five years after production would be a rule of thumb for life expectancy. The five year period was also mentioned by another EU-based manufacturer in response to an RFI, but I've not received permission to quote/attribute.

 

I believe my dear SamCap♡te proposed extending life expectancy by adding biocide upon receipt of the ink.

 

Also, to reduce risk exposure to contamination, one might well use a sanitised syringe or eyedropper to transfer ink from the ink bottle to an intermediate container from which unsanitised pens would be filled. (No more filling follies courtesy of Visconti.)

 

It seems this is a matter that FPN is well suited to address over time, with Members posting instances of defective ink, especially SITB. Should there be wide-spread problems, perhaps those Posts could be consolidated in a pinned Topic.

 

My tuppence worth . . .

 

Bye,

S1

Edited by Sandy1

The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.

 

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amberleadavis

My bottles of Skrip and Mont Blanc that I've had for over 20 years have no sign of icky stuff. However, I think that may have something to do with living in the hot Nevada desert. Lots of stuff doesn't grow here.

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).



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My bottles of Skrip and Mont Blanc that I've had for over 20 years have no sign of icky stuff. However, I think that may have something to do with living in the hot Nevada desert. Lots of stuff doesn't grow here.

:lol:

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Gloucesterman

My bottles of Skrip and Mont Blanc that I've had for over 20 years have no sign of icky stuff. However, I think that may have something to do with living in the hot Nevada desert. Lots of stuff doesn't grow here.

 

What about the Gila Monster? That grows there doesn't it? :hmm1: :hmm1:

“Don't put off till tomorrow what you can do today, because if you do it today and like it, you can do again tomorrow!”

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If the wee stickers that seal the Montblanc boxes are a reasonably accurate prediction, then it seems five years after production would be a rule of thumb for life expectancy. The five year period was also mentioned by another EU-based manufacturer in response to an RFI, but I've not received permission to quote/attribute.

Some time ago, I suggested to the distributor of one EU-based ink that the manufacture date be affixed to the bottle. A lot number would also be useful to track down bad batches should they occur. She agreed to pass my suggestions along but I never heard anything more about it.

 

If one company takes the lead, perhaps others will follow. Not that I would toss a bottle of ink over an expiration date, but I might be less likely to purchase a bottle close to its possible demise.

 

All those precautions about ink amount to a program for good ink hygiene that should accompany good pen hygiene. What's next? Good paper hygiene? :headsmack:

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My bottles of Skrip and Mont Blanc that I've had for over 20 years have no sign of icky stuff. However, I think that may have something to do with living in the hot Nevada desert. Lots of stuff doesn't grow here.

 

What about the Gila Monster? That grows there doesn't it? :hmm1: :hmm1:

 

Gila Monsters live the lower southeast portion of Arizona and next door in New Mexico I believe, around the Gila River and Gila Wilderness area. Don't think they can survive the fridged 90 degree weather of Nevada. :)

What Would The Flying Spaghetti Monster Do?

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My bottles of Skrip and Mont Blanc that I've had for over 20 years have no sign of icky stuff. However, I think that may have something to do with living in the hot Nevada desert. Lots of stuff doesn't grow here.

I'd say that any decent ink (kept in in a box) which can survive the presence in Surprise Valley (formerly known as Death Valley) should prove that the ink is an "okay" ink.

But me, being present in a milder latitude and longitude, although I've not been there recently, I've still not yet ever met any un-long shelf life of any ink. And all I have is a few IKEA bookcase shelves about 4 yards away from the windows.

 

Tadaaa!

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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amberleadavis

Well, uh, my family was in the nursery business. So, we MADE stuff grow here. But, I still haven't had mold grow in my ink bottles.

 

http://davisnursery.net/images/PICT0003.png

 

 

Here was the fireplace - which I think is a work of art.

 

http://davisnursery.net/images/FirePlace.png

 

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).



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Not only is that fireplace handsome, it is enormous. Makes me feel toasty just to look at it.

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amberleadavis

Sorry, totally off topic.

 

That fireplace is huge and that's after we bricked it in and made it smaller.

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).



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Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 366 Inks in 2016



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Do you ever have to make a fire in that fireplace or does it stay hot enough due to the sun?

 

sleep.gifsleep.gif

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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amberleadavis

Do you ever have to make a fire in that fireplace or does it stay hot enough due to the sun?

 

sleep.gifsleep.gif

 

From the time we opened that building until the day we sold it -- fires each and every winter. For you, our winters are mild ... you'd call them "sweater weather" ... for us anything under 80 requires a sweater. Anything approaching 60s is cause to light the fire.

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).



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Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 366 Inks in 2016



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Excuse the newb here but to get some of the life spans mentioned pre-fireplace is it best to store the bottles in the boxes out of the direct light?

"The fountain pen is mightier than the ballpoint"

 


My Blog: www.MyPenNeedsInk.com

 

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Excuse the newb here but to get some of the life spans mentioned pre-fireplace is it best to store the bottles in the boxes out of the direct light?

Absolutely! That is probably why my collection has seen so little degradation and why pretty bottles have no allure for me. I am always disappointed to receive a bottle with no box though a dark shelf will suffice for my stash of Rohrer & Klinger and De Atramentis bottles that arrived naked. ;)

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amberleadavis

@DriedUpBob

 

Check out this thread, I've never had an open bottle of ink fade on me. I keep my bottles out and displayed. HOWEVER, I do not have my bottles actually in direct sun. In more than two decades of my bottled ink being exposed to light (and heat), I've never had one fade in the bottle, but I've had writings fade quickly (see my fade experiments). I've asked if anyone has personal knowledge of their ink fading while in the bottle - no one has had personal experience with fading, though some inks have just decomposed or molded (no correlation with sun exposure).

 

So, my suggestion, enjoy your bottled ink, buy so much you won't use it all in your lifetime.

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).



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Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 366 Inks in 2016



Check out inks sorted by color: Blue Purple Brown Red Green Dark Green Orange Black Pinks Yellows Blue-Blacks Grey/Gray UVInks Turquoise/Teal MURKY

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