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Noodler's Ink Water Test



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I use my fountain pens at work a lot. Not only do I take notes, write drafts of reports and memos, and sign documents, but I also use them to mark up presentations and other reports as I review them. I like to use red and green when marking documents. I like blacks and blues for my notes and general writing. Above all, I need them to be somewhat water-resistant, because in the office environment papers come into accidental contact with beverages and such. I'd rather my writing be somewhat permanent so accidents don't make a mess of the work.

 

I recently discovered Noodler's inks after having been a fountain pen user for many years. It wasn't until the last few months that I started to get interested in the hobby of pens and inks. That's when I discovered FPN and other forums and began reading everything I could find about pens, inks, and paper. I got interested in Noodler's inks because of the wide variety of colors and their claim to water resistance. I learned that the inks I was using were not the best for the environment in which I was using them, so I started trying out other inks.

 

After about six months, I took a look at my ink collection and realized I had a bunch of Noodler's inks, mostly because of their claims of semi-permanence. I decided to do my own test of the inks I had to help me determine if I had selected the right ones for the job. I was confused by the different terms Noodler's used: "bulletproof" and "water resistant". Which did I need? I would like my writing to retain as much of the original color and content should it accidentally get soaked by an office spill. I'm not so concerned about forgery or intentional changes to the writing.

 

Of the Noodler's inks I have, all but one is listed as "water resistant". All but two are listed as "bulletproof". I'm thinking I need water resistant more than bulletproof. Anyway, I decided to test what I had.

 

Using a sheet of 28# Staples Bright White Laser paper (nice smooth finish I use for some of my writing), I wrote two lines per ink across the sheet. The ink was allowed to dry for over 48 hours. I scanned a "before" image. Then, I cut the sheet in half and placed the right half in a tray of tap water at room temperature for 1 hour. After an hour, the half sheet was removed and placed on a paper towel to dry. When dry, it was taped to its mate, and I scanned an "after" image. The results are included here.

 

Before:

post-109354-0-89803300-1390775138_thumb.jpg

 

Photo taken at the two minute mark:

post-109354-0-31632000-1390778704_thumb.jpg

 

After:

post-109354-0-92924500-1390775136_thumb.jpg

 

I was somewhat relieved to see that my inks all survived to one degree or another. Even the one ink not listed as water resistant made a respectable showing. It was interesting to note that some bulletproof inks retained their total characteristics while others faded, spread out, or lost some color components.

 

In order of performance, here's my ranking:

#1 - Noodler's Black (absolutely true to it's claims, no visible changes)

#2 - Tie - Bad Green Gator and 54th Massachusetts (some faint amounts of dye lifted off in the water, but not enough to change the color or appearance

#4 - Noodler's Fox Red (almost immediate loss of red hues and left behind an orange line)

#5 - Liberty's Elysium (lost its deep blue dye component in the first few minutes)

#6 - Baystate Blue (color remained true, but significant bleeding out into the surrounding paper)

#7 - Nikita (for some reason, the red color intensified and spread out on the paper)

 

All in all, my go-to inks, Black, 54th, and BGG held up to my expectations. My biggest disappointment was Liberty's Elysium. I love the ink and was hoping it would hold its color better than it did. My greatest surprise was Nikita Red and its reasonable showing. It's nice to have a low-cost red for general mark-up and editing that holds up to some office mishaps.

 

Hope this helps others in selecting inks.

Favorite pen/ink pairings: Edison Brockton w/EF 14K gold nib and Noodler's 54th Massachusetts; Visconti Pinanfarina w/EF chromium conical nib and Noodler's El Lawrence; Sheaffer Legacy w/18k extra fine inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Sheaffer PFM III fine w/14k inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Lamy 2000 EF with Noodler's 54th Massachusetts; Franklin Christoph 65 Stablis w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and DeAtramentis Document Blue; Pilot Decimo w/18k fine nib and Pilot Blue Black; Franklin Christoph 45 w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and Noodler's Zhivago; Edison Brockton EF and Noodler's El Lawrence; TWSBI ECO EF with Noodler's Bad Green Gator.

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Thanks for this, I've been looking for a nice red ink and the results for Fox Red and Nikita are very interesting (I wonder if a mix would stay redder in water, hm).

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Very interesting. Thanks for the side-by-side comparison - really makes it clear how things changed after the soak. :-)

Fountain pen blog | Personal blog

 

Current collection: Pilot Vanishing Point, TWSBI Vac 700, Kaweco Al Sport, Lamy Safari, Nemosine Singularity

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks. Great test.

Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right

to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers,

and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. Revelation 22:14-15

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Thanks for posting your test results. I'm glad all inks survived a good soak. Every time I see a post about Noodler's Elysium I think, "Hmm...I've got to get bottle of that...."

www.lettermatters.com

P.O. Box 196 Kingsburg, CA 93631

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Thanks for the test. I was pleasantly impressed. My favorite ink is Noodler's Old Manhattan Black. I have found it to be sufficiently waterproof for me. Thanks again.

 

-David.

No matter how much you push the envelope, it will still be stationery. -Anon.

A backward poet writes inverse. -Anon.

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I hope you don't mind me adding mine in. Here are a couple that I did a while back. I didn't document what pens I used, but the paper is from a little orange Rhodia notebook.

 

http://www.fototime.com/CD4CAD886CB95CC/large.jpg

 

http://www.fototime.com/BA1584FFBAE9995/large.jpg

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Thanks for adding. I'm always looking for the next Noodler's water resistant ink. Wish someone would post a Kung Te-Cheng water test. That's next on my buy list.

Favorite pen/ink pairings: Edison Brockton w/EF 14K gold nib and Noodler's 54th Massachusetts; Visconti Pinanfarina w/EF chromium conical nib and Noodler's El Lawrence; Sheaffer Legacy w/18k extra fine inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Sheaffer PFM III fine w/14k inlaid nib and Noodler's Black; Lamy 2000 EF with Noodler's 54th Massachusetts; Franklin Christoph 65 Stablis w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and DeAtramentis Document Blue; Pilot Decimo w/18k fine nib and Pilot Blue Black; Franklin Christoph 45 w/steel Masuyama fine cursive italic and Noodler's Zhivago; Edison Brockton EF and Noodler's El Lawrence; TWSBI ECO EF with Noodler's Bad Green Gator.

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Thank you all for this review. I'll check 54th Massachusetts and Noodler's Black.

Edited by Guillermo
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Thanks for adding. I'm always looking for the next Noodler's water resistant ink. Wish someone would post a Kung Te-Cheng water test. That's next on my buy list.

 

Kung Te-Cheng does not budge under water.

Scribere est agere.

To write is to act.

___________________________

Danitrio Fellowship

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inkstainedruth

 

Kung Te-Cheng does not budge under water.

Kung Te Cheng does not budge, period. Not under water, not under UV (check out Amberleadavis' endurance tests).

Unfortunately that means that sometimes it doesn't budge from my pen.... Which is quite annoying, since it's hands down my favorite ink, period. Does better when it's diluted, and then I don't have as much problem with nib creep either.

KTC needs, IMO, to be a daily writer. And at the moment I have too many other pens inked up (several with iron gall inks), so it can't be. But if I need to write checks, it's the first ink I think of using.

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."

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amberleadavis

These are incredible!

 

CJR, thank you for the great contribution to FPN.

 

:W2FPN:

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



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