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New_Falcon
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I apologise for the longish post. When I initially thought about doing this it seemed like it would be a lot more succinct, but it seems to have gotten away from me. I hope that the formatting on this post comes out okay too. I should add too I don't know my green from a teal and indigo from a purple, so please don't expect very eloquent musings on the colour palettes.

 

Anyway here's some thoughts on Sheaffers Blue Black, Watermans Serenity Blue, Diamine Blue Black, Diamine Denim, Watermans Mysterious Blue, R&K Salix, Lamy Blue Black.

 

 

My standard ink for a long time has been Noodlers Black and it's behaved wonderfully. Recently however, I've been thinking about trying something with a little colour and being the adventurous person I am decided to look into the world of blue blacks.

I tried samples of

Watermans Serenity Blue
I ordered this as it seems to be a standard and reference ink. I wanted to try this out as I wanted to get an idea for what a low maintenence ink was like.

Watermans Mysterious Blue
This was to try a Blue black colour from a well known ink company.

Sheaffers Blue Black
This was to try a Blue black colour from a well known ink company.

Diamine Blue Black
There were a lot of blue blacks from Diamine and after going through a bunch of online reviews and postings I almost at a whim selected Diamine Blue Black and Diamine Denim to try out.

Diamine Denim
See comments for Diamine Blue Black.

Lamy Blue Black
As the only pens I have are two Lamy 2000s I thought it would be appropriate to try a Lamy ink.

R&K Salix.
I've been intrigued by Iron Gall inks but as I wanted to try something a little away from black I thought that this would be the 'blueist' IG ink.




My intended usage for the ink is an everyday ink, meaning my own notes at work, shopping lists, reminders, etc. The majority of my writing is at work so I need something that will allow me to use both sides of the paper, so show through and bleedthrough are important to me. As I'm already using a fine nib I didn't want an ink that felt excessively dry (I had read Salix was dry but decided I wanted to try it anyway) or created a very tight line. The Lamy 2000's have fairly small but for me, useful ink windows. I wanted an ink that wouldn't stain the window. Also for this ink water resistance isn't a big issue as I sit in an office all day. My plan is to fill a couple of Pilot Varsity's with Noodlers Black for the times that I need permanence. In fact the lack of permanence might be beneficial as I have a couple of nice white shirts now personalised with Noodlers Black.

I wish that I had the writing that would bring out the world of shading inks but that's not going to happen so a shading ink is not a priority.

So with the samples in hand I have been using them for a couple of days a piece on the paper that I normally encounter. I know that this is not the best paper, but it's what I have to use on a regular basis.

Norcom Composition Book made in Brazil
Staples Bagasse Notebook (didn't check where this was made before I bought) made in Egypt.
Whatever paper was in the printer.

I wanted to put something together that I could use as a reference so in the future I can look back and see why I made the decision to buy a bottle of a particular ink. To do that as well as using it for a couple of days, I copied out some text on to the three different papers as mentioned above.

I should also note that I used the same pen for all the testing. My Lamy 2000 with a fine nib. I also included some writing with Noodlers Black for reference.

I hope that this is of use or at least interesting to folks.

Firstly here are the inks on the Norcom Brazil Composition Book.

post-70025-0-54192900-1398094939_thumb.jpg

post-70025-0-37609300-1398094953_thumb.jpg

post-70025-0-62546800-1398094964_thumb.jpg

 

Secondly here are the inks on Staples Bagasse

 

post-70025-0-26630500-1398095032_thumb.jpg

post-70025-0-00197700-1398095043_thumb.jpg

post-70025-0-13530200-1398095058_thumb.jpg

 

Thirdly here are the inks on the cheap printer paper.

post-70025-0-68561800-1398095130_thumb.jpg

post-70025-0-97651200-1398095139_thumb.jpg

Order of the inks..

Noodlers Black
Sheaffers Blue Black
Watermans Serenity Blue
Diamine Blue Black
Diamine Denim
Watermans Mysterious Blue
R&K Salix.
Lamy Blue Black

I apologise for the scans. I thought I would have more time to scan them in better but life got in the way.

Now some of MY initial impressions of the inks.


Watermans Serenity Blue
This is a nice colour when it first goes on the paper but then seems to get lighter and then after a few days purply. Flow was a moderate and clean up a breeze. No water resistance when paper put into water.

Watermans Mysterious Blue
This was a really nice colour when it went down but also seemed to change. Not sure about this ink but didn't impress me enough to want to order a bottle of it.

Sheaffers Blue Black
Thin tight lines. Fairly dry. Colour is nice but probably needs a broader nib to show it off better.

Diamine Blue Black
This was the first ink of the lot than when I tried it I thought this is different and nice. Smooth flow and an intriguing colour. Not sure what I mean about the colour but it's something that I keep going back to look at. No water resistance when paper soaked.

Diamine Denim
To my eyes quite similar to Diamine Blue Black and similar performance. Diamine Blue black felt a little wetter and a little broader line than the Diamine Denim. No water resistance when paper soaked.

Lamy Blue Black
I'm surprised that this doesn't have more of a following. I suppose it's just because it's a general allround good ink but not great in any one department. A water soak shows the blue lifts off revealing a readable black underneath.

R&K Salix.
This I had great expectations for as it was my first Iron Gall ink. So it had the most to live up to, not fair I know. It is a dry ink but not excessive and not something that would bother me. I was expecting to see the colour transition fairly quickly but it didn't seem to happen within 30mins of writing but looking at my notes from before the weekend they now seem darker than I remember them being. Scans were done two days after the writing. This ink also seemed to have the most shading. A good ink, but I need to real a little more about the hygiene issues.

 

Bleedthrough and showthrough was pretty much dependent on the quality of the paper, but for my purposes all papers could be used on both sides.

I know this is not the most scientific way of picking an ink nor the most rigorous, but it should serve my purpose. I hope this post helps or entertains.

I'll post some follow up when I've tried these inks a little more.

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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This is a wonderful comparison!!! Thank you!

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

Create a Ghostly Avatar and I'll send you a letter. Check out some Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 

Don't know where to start?  Look at the Inky Topics O'day.  Then, see 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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Thanks for the insightful comparison. From the scans it appears that Lamy Blue/Black and the R&K Salix are close in color. Would you concur?

 

Also, about the Lamy BB, are you using the new formulation or the old IG-based ink.

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The Lamy Blue Black is the new formulation. As for the colour difference between it and Salix I would say that Salix was a dusty blue colour and Lamy Blue Black was a little darker and maybe a little more purple. Seeing the two side by side you can tell the difference. Looking at a page of one and then after 5 minutes looking at a page of the other they are close enough that I remember them the same.

 

For me I need to see them side by side for the colour difference to be large enough to be distinct.

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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Wow wow wow! Your handwriting is so neat :D . Great comparison.

 

Ben

''You can't stay in your corner of the forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes''. A A Milne

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A great comparison and there are some of my favourite inks in there. Marvellous!

The Good Captain

"Meddler's 'Salamander' - almost as good as the real thing!"

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Wonderful comparo, much appreciated. And yes, lovely writing!

 

I really must get some Diamine BB...

"I was cut off from the world. There was no one to confuse or torment me, and I was forced to become original." - Franz Joseph Haydn 1732 - 1809
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Nice comparison. I just can't get enough of such posts. Still amazed how much blue-blacks can differ (yes, it's completely logical) i.e. some are more of a slightly bluish black; some exactly the other way around. (Serenity wasn't ever planned to be a blue-black but rather their "standard" blue, which is of course a benchmark blue for many members, as you say.)

 

Mike

 

Life is too short to drink bad wine (Goethe)

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Thanks for the kind words all.

I appreciate the comments on my writing too, but I would really like to speed it up and make it more consistent, but that's for a different thread and the pemanship forum.

I too was surprised how differently all these inks were, well apart from Diamine Blue Black and Diamine Denim, they are pretty close.

I'm beginning to see how people end up with lots of bottles of ink, but I'm going to carry on using the samples and see if my feelings are the same on which blue black I'm going to get a bottle of.

I only really keep two pens inked, my regular use lamy 2000 and a backup pilot varsity. The Varsity will be for Noodlers black and the Lamy 2000 for the blue black I settle on.

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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After a little more usage of Lamy Blue Black.

The ink feels a little dry with my Lamy2000 Fine nib. I think that dryness has been reported as a characteristic of Lamy inks and maybe in part to tame the wet flow that many report with there Lamy pens. There is nice shading with this ink and it does show even with a fine nib.

On my regular paper, which is a Norcom Composition Book, the colour seems to be more blue than black and probably on the bluer side of blue black. In fact I think that most people commenting on the colour of the ink would just say it was a blue ink.

There's a very slight bleedthrough on occasion and some showthrough but this ink allows both sides of the page of the Norcom to be used.

On the downside the pen seems to need a half letter stroke to start writing in the morning and then it's fine all day. The ink window seems difficult to check too. With the pen half full, pointing the ink nib up, the window looks completely full. A tap or two on the side of the barrell and the ink seems to flow downward and you can see light through the window. The window does look bright blue at the point.

For me I know with my regular usage I refill every Friday morning, so though annoying the ink window situation isn't a deal breaker. Same for the hard start in the morning. The dryness is a little annoying too. That maybe be the deal breaker for me though a number of annoying little things and knowing that I didn't have this with Noodlers Black may mean Lamy Blue Black wont be an ink for me.

Final note on the this ink is that it seems to be fairly easy to clean out of the pen. A couple of rinses and cycles of the piston leaves clear water and a clean ink window.

 

Onto revisit Diamine Blue Black...

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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Beautiful comparison - thanks for sharing it.

 

The Waterman Mysterious Blue doesn't seem to change; it definitely changes. Which is too bad, cos I really like the color before it changes to the teal, which is a nice color, too, but - it isn't the nice, dark blue it purports to be. It's a bait-and-switch ink!

_________________

etherX in To Miasto

Fleekair <--French accent.

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Great review of some great inks! It's also great to see a review with practical papers and normal office use. Thank you for the review... may have to order a couple new samples of ink.

 

Buzz

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Revisting Diamine Blue Black

For me this is definitely an intriguing colour, I would put it as a very dark blue. Flows well and the nib doesn't feel dry.

Lamy 2000 window works well with this ink. Pointing the nib to the ceiling after a second the ink flows back down the barrel and a clear ink window is seen. The more informative way of checking the ink on the Lamy 2000 is to hold it horizontally and see the level in the ink window then, Diamine Blue Black works well here too.

No real shading here and it's a consistent dark colour all the way through the writing. Correction when writing a paragraph at a faster than normal speed does show some shading. Though this is at a faster writing speed than I normally write at, so it's writer dependent on whether this is a shading ink or not.

There's definite showthrough and bleedthrough. This is probably down to the ink being a lot wetter too. For me the pages are still usable on both sides. Thought not as clean as Noodlers Black, this might annoy some and it could be an issue with broader nibs, remember I'm using a fine nib.

No hard starts with this pen in the morning unlike with Lamy Blue Black.

Nice ink overall and something that I'm going to have to think about getting. Only downside to me is that the showthrough and bleedthrough border on the annoying range. Still acceptable to use both sides of the page, but verging on annoying.

Onto Sheaffer Blue Black..

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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Very nice.

Richard said a good BB changes with in 24 hours.

ESSR will change before your eyes on many papers....some take a full day, others over a week.

 

Diamine Denim caught my eye most.

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.

RIP...200's once great nib, now a double ball.:crybaby::wallbash:

 

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

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sheaffer Blue Black...

 

I like this colour, a dusty blue black that's a little more of a dusty blue than a real blue black.

Pen feels a little dry, but nothing too bad.

Bleed through is not seen on my Norcom notebook and showthrough is more than acceptable. There is shading.

On initial writing after being capped for a while the colour is a strong blue black and then as you write across the page it goes to the dusty blue black. Not sure whether I like or loathe this.

Ink window on the Lamy 2000 with this ink is usable but there is a definite blue tinge to the window, so not as fast to judge how much ink is there but doable. Generally I know that I fill every Friday so I don't really rely heavily on the ink window, but I do like to have them functional on a pen.

Line is true to the nib size and no signs of feathering.

No hard starts in the morning and an ink worth considering, though it does feel a little dry.

Overall the second usage of this ink makes me think that this might be worth a buy. I still have some ink left in the sample so I think that I'm going to extend the 'revisit' stage and think about it again.

After that back to Diamine Denim.

Edited by New_Falcon

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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Thanks for the comparisons, they're really helpful! I have to say I liked Lamy BB and Diamine Denim, but Denim was definitely more eyecatching.

 

I'm looking for a nice blue black for notes - I've only ever used Quink BB, and that dries to a weird green black that I don't really like. Will definitely consider the Diamine or Lamy ink.

 

If I may ask, how/where do you buy samples of ink? Though I've used FPs for a few years, until recently I've only used cartridges and not yet sure which inks to buy! Only have Skrip Turquoise, Quink BB and Lamy Black at the moment, even though they may last me for years to come!!

Parker 75, Ingenuity, Premier, Sonnet, Urban | Pelikan M400 | TWSBI Diamond 580 | Visconti Rembrandt



Currently inked: Diamine Apple Glory (Rembrandt), Pelikan 4001 Turquoise (M400), Lamy Black (Diamond 580)

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  • 3 weeks later...

So I've been using Diamine Denim and I have to say I really like it.

Pen feels well lubricated and very smooth.

The ink goes on wet and makes the nib a little broader than it normally writes. This to me isn't a bad thing. I normally write with a Lamy 2000 fine and now have been thinking about getting something little broader. The slightly thicker line given by Diamine Denim is nice.

Lamy ink window works fairly well. Just hold it with the nib pointing to the ceiling for about 10 seconds before checking the window. The ink window isn't clear but left with a bright blue that you can see through. If bright blue there's no ink behind it.

No real signs of feathering but bleedthrough is there on my normal Norcom Composition book and showthrough is there too.

No hard starts in the morning but it does look like there is a little 'dew' on the nib.

I don't think that I'm going to revisit

Lamy Blue Black
Waterman Florida Blue
Waterman Mysterious Blue
R&K Salix

I'm going to write through this Diamine Denim ink fill and then go back to see how Noodlers Black feels after trying all these other inks.

WTT: My Lamy 2000 Fine nib for your Lamy 2000 Broad nib.

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