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Cleaning Method For Iron Gall Ink Using Ascorbic Acid



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I will show you how to clean a fountain pen with iron gall ink stains.
http://iron-gallink.blogspot.jp/2013/11/cleaning-method-for-iron-gall-ink-using.html
I already wrote this method in the Japanese fountain pen magazine (Shumi no Bungu-bako vol.16 and vol.23).
It is very easy, inexpensive and effective method.
Please try it :lol: . Thank you for your attention.

 

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Sounds good to me. Since the (original) idea of an iron gall ink turning into a practically irremovable ink stain is due to an oxidation of Fe2+ to Fe3+ on paper in the air, a re-reduction back to Fe2+ will probably do the job. Since that Fe2+ content is by no means a dark precipitate any more but a very soluble light green solution, that ought to work everywhere. That necessitates however the action that this precipitate can be brought back into solution and I don't know for sure if that is possible here, although you seem to have proven that it is. I have lots of ascorbic acid and lots of iron-gall inks so will soon try that on for size.

 

Mike

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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Sounds good to me. Since the (original) idea of an iron gall ink turning into a practically irremovable ink stain is due to an oxidation of Fe2+ to Fe3+ on paper in the air, a re-reduction back to Fe2+ will probably do the job. Since that Fe2+ content is by no means a dark precipitate any more but a very soluble light green solution, that ought to work everywhere. That necessitates however the action that this precipitate can be brought back into solution and I don't know for sure if that is possible here, although you seem to have proven that it is. I have lots of ascorbic acid and lots of iron-gall inks so will soon try that on for size.

 

Mike

One other reason that this might work well is that ascorbic acid is a weak acid, slightly stronger than acetic acid and acetic acid (aka vinegar) is recommended for cleaning out IG inks from pens. One way to distinguish the reducing vs the acid effect would be to compare sodium ascorbate vs ascorbic acid.

 

Mark

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Or, ascorbic acid vs acetic acid (vinegar). Completely aside from this, it might also be beneficial to try out citric acid and/or tartaric acid (both used to de-calcify kitchen equipment and easy to obtain everywhere). Adipic acid and/or sulfamic acid as well (both are also used as cleaning agents for kitchen equipment). AFAIK all of these are FDA-approved and can even be included as food stabilizers.

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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I wonder how the even more readily available aspirin might work.

Jeffery

In the Irish Channel of

New Orleans, LA

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Hi, there. Thank you for your suggestion. To compare sodium ascorbate vs ascorbic acid is very good idea. I will try it.
One reason why is that I have compare ascorbic acid with citric acid. You know, citric acid is slightly stronger acid than ascorbic acid. And yet, ascorbic acid is more effective cleaner than citric acid.
http://cdn-ak.f.st-hatena.com/images/fotolife/p/pgary/20120717/20120717225438.jpg
From the left, iron tannate solution +distilled water, +ascorbic acid, +citric acid and +oxalic acid.
http://d.hatena.ne.jp/pgary/20120717/p1 in Japanease

 

PGARY

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amberleadavis

Hi, there. Thank you for your suggestion. To compare sodium ascorbate vs ascorbic acid is very good idea. I will try it.

One reason why is that I have compare ascorbic acid with citric acid. You know, citric acid is slightly stronger acid than ascorbic acid. And yet, ascorbic acid is more effective cleaner than citric acid.

http://cdn-ak.f.st-hatena.com/images/fotolife/p/pgary/20120717/20120717225438.jpg

From the left, iron tannate solution +distilled water, +ascorbic acid, +citric acid and +oxalic acid.

http://d.hatena.ne.jp/pgary/20120717/p1 in Japanease

 

PGARY

 

 

:W2FPN:

 

Thank for the pics.

 

BTW, are those RPN calcs from HP?

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



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Pgary
Very interesting. But it would be easier to interpret the results if we knew the concentrations of these solutions.

 

Edit to add: i assume you are using 1% w/v ascorbic acid in water from the information you post in your blog link, but what about the concentration of citric and oxalic acids in your experiment above?

Edited by cellmatrix
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Hi,

 

Very interesting!

 

BTW, I have an HP 35s like the one left.

 

Dillon

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Dillon

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I do like Montblanc and R&K Salix inks, so this would be a helpful trick. However, where do I get the ascorbic acid, and how much to I mix with water to get a 1% solution?

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I do like Montblanc and R&K Salix inks, so this would be a helpful trick. However, where do I get the ascorbic acid, and how much to I mix with water to get a 1% solution?

1g ascorbic acid in 100ml of water will give you 1%.

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1g ascorbic acid in 100ml of water will give you 1%.

Okay, but do I just disolve a Vitamin C suppliment in water, or what?

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Okay, but do I just disolve a Vitamin C suppliment in water, or what?

Basically, no, a Vitamin C supplement can contain anything else e.g. like Calcium, Vitamin D3, and/or lemon flavorings etc. For a real "1% w/v solution" you need a "pure" Vitamin C = ascorbic acid powder/ crystalline offer. Available at most drug stores. Of course, you can also just try out out any solution of any "Vitamin C supplement" in water, whatever the concentration. Restriction to "1%" is silly, you can use any concentration of ascorbic acid -- or the above-mentioned other alternatives -- you can imagine. Just leave the pen in it overnight and wash out enough the next day.

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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vinegar seems easier to find.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

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Yes, but the better the vinegar, the more I save it for cooking....

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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Very useful, thank you!

 

How about the 'stain' on the paper; i.e. will this also remove the text from the page?

I am no longer very active on FPN but feel free to message me. Or send me a postal letter!

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Pgary

Very interesting. But it would be easier to interpret the results if we knew the concentrations of these solutions.

 

Edit to add: i assume you are using 1% w/v ascorbic acid in water from the information you post in your blog link, but what about the concentration of citric and oxalic acids in your experiment above?

 

Thank you for your suggestion.

I mixed 1 molar parts of Fe3+ ion with 2 molar parts of ascorbic acid (or citric acid, or oxalic acid) in #6 image (1:2 molar ratio).

 

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Very useful, thank you!

 

How about the 'stain' on the paper; i.e. will this also remove the text from the page?

 

Thank you for your interest.

Ascorbic acid solution can reduce the color strength of iron gall ink, but its effect is weak.

This image is old pilot iron gall ink.

http://cdn-ak.f.st-hatena.com/images/fotolife/p/pgary/20120827/20120827203351.jpg

wash by flowing tap water.

http://cdn-ak.f.st-hatena.com/images/fotolife/p/pgary/20120827/20120827203349.jpg

after dip in 10% ascorbic acid solution for 1 minute.

http://cdn-ak.f.st-hatena.com/images/fotolife/p/pgary/20120827/20120827203347.jpg

Older method, combination of oxalic acid solution and sodium hypochlorite solution is more effective than ascorbic acid.

http://cdn-ak.f.st-hatena.com/images/fotolife/p/pgary/20131207/20131207214213.jpg?1386420142

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