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Penbbs No. 157 Hangzhou Ink Review



truthpil

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Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to FPN.
They not only talk about inks but also produce their own inks every year. Each series consists of ten to fifteen inks and 2017 marks the release of Penbbs’ fifteenth ink series. Due to Chinese postal restrictions, these inks are virtually impossible to obtain outside of China. However, within China they are extremely affordable (21 RMB or about US$3 per 60ml bottle) and can easily be purchased through the Chinese online shopping giant Taobao.

 

This ink up for review is from Penbbs’ twelfth series. It is named after the city of Hangzhou in eastern China. Hangzhou is famous for its beautiful scenery and is where longjing green tea is grown (a wonderful tea which I highly recommend). This tea is pan-roasted so the color is a little darker than some other green teas. I think the color of this ink is a good representation of the color of the tea leaves, although I don’t know if that’s what the ink makers were going for. What do you think?

 

fpn_1485667778__longjing_leaves.jpg

 

The color may just be a reference to the city’s natural scenery.

 

The color is slightly darker and greener than the olive Penbbs ink No. 132 that I reviewed previously. This makes it more useful for daily writing. The color is certainly gentle on the eyes.

 

This ink gives some shading on all papers with wider nibs. Its drying time is a little longer than No. 132, but it also feathers a little less. Bleed through was quite bad on Moleskine, but on other papers it was passable with wet nibs and non-existent with the Japanese fine nib. This ink is slightly water resistant as well. The darker green component remains to leave a barely legible line while the rest washes off.

 

The interesting color and shading make this a nice ink, but as with ink No. 132, it feathers and bleeds too much for my taste.

 

Pens used (in order):

1. Pilot 78G Fine

2. Lamy Safari Broad

3. Pilot Plumix Italic

4. Noodler’s Nib Creaper Flex

5. Hero 5028 1.9mm Stub

 

 

Swab

 

fpn_1485668190__penbbs_157_1_compressed.

 

 

Paper Towel Drop

fpn_1485668234__penbbs_157_2.jpg

 

 

80gsm Rhodia

 

fpn_1485668283__penbbs_157_3.jpg

 

fpn_1485668327__penbbs_157_4_compressed.

 

fpn_1485668367__penbbs_157_5_compressed.

 

 

73gsm Chinese Tomoe River Wannabe (brand unknown)

fpn_1485668398__penbbs_157_6_compressed.

 

fpn_1485668449__penbbs_157_7_compressed.

 

 

70gms Deli Copy Paper

 

fpn_1485668482__penbbs_157_8.jpg

 

fpn_1485668520__penbbs_157_9_compressed.

 

fpn_1485668574__penbbs_157_10_compressed

 

 

Moleskine

 

fpn_1485668624__penbbs_157_11_compressed

 

fpn_1485668661__penbbs_157_12_compressed

fpn_1485668698__penbbs_157_13_compressed

 

Water Resistance

fpn_1485668758__penbbs_157_14_compressed

 

 

fpn_1485669115__penbbs_157_15_compressed

 

 

Mini-comparison (No. 157 is at the bottom)

 

[My apologies that I don’t have any inks close to this color to do an adequate comparison. No. 157 mistakenly appears lighter than No. 132 on this image. :(]

 

fpn_1485497576__penbbs_132_comparison_co

 

 

 

SDG

Edited by TruthPil

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Thanks for reading, vis!

 

I just realized I had the wrong number in the title. Just fixed it... this is ink No. 157. :P

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Nice!

I'm really interested in a picture of the bottle, too, if possible?

Maybe it's worth trying to get it - after all I've been living and working in Hangzhou for some time...

Greetings,

Michael

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Nice!

I'm really interested in a picture of the bottle, too, if possible?

Maybe it's worth trying to get it - after all I've been living and working in Hangzhou for some time...

 

Here's a picture of the bottle and label from Penbbs. Do you know what that building is?

I'm guessing it's an important site in Hangzhou, but I've never been there myself.

 

fpn_1485903981__no157pic.jpg

 

Lucky you to live in such a scenic place! I'm up in the frozen north of the country.

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Thank you so very much! That's great to see!

 

Indeed, it's the Leifeng Pagoda - maybe you know it from the legend of the white snake, where it plays an interesting role. The Pagoda has been rebuilt in 2002 or so.

Hangzhou is really a lovely place to be - and longjing tea one of my favorites!

 

Maybe I'm lucky and find a seller who is willing to ship abroad (with or without ink, doesn't matter)

Greetings,

Michael

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This is so my color of ink! Where did you get it and did you pay the reasonable price of $3 USD for it? Your reviews are great, by the way.

Breathe. Take one step at a time. Don't sweat the small stuff. You're not getting older, you are only moving through time. Be calm and positive.

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very nice detailed review...

loved it...

 

Thanks for taking the time to read it. Your pen reviews are fantastic!

 

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This is so my color of ink! Where did you get it and did you pay the reasonable price of $3 USD for it? Your reviews are great, by the way.

 

Thanks for the encouragement!

I live in China so I can just buy them on the Chinese shopping site Taobao.

As far as I know there currently isn't any practical way to get them outside of China.

 

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Thank you for the review! This is a truly wonderful colour. I love both tea and inks, so this one strikes a chord.

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Really nice ink. I have fond memories of Hangzhou and Xī Hú. The walk around to the temple on the far side is most pleasant. Today I still get my lóngjǐng chá directly from Hangzhou via some family friends. It's pretty much the only tea I drink (except when a different friend forces pu'er tea into my hands).

 

Pity I cannot get this ink, though I may ask as a friend's parents are visiting here soon and they are keen to bring me something (on account of me doing a rather large favour for the friend, apparently. I've begged off, but to no avail).

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  • 4 years later...

Not much of a fan of the ink, but Hangzhou was a very nice city- it was undergoing considerable development and modernisation at the time I visited, 2012, much like Shanghai's other satellite cities. I haven't been back since, and I would be keen to return. I was living quite close by train before the pandemic, in Changzhou, and seemingly went everywhere famous in the region in 2018 and 2019 except Hangzhou- it just never worked out to go there each time I planned it, with the trains navigating around Lake Taihu in a timely manner being in extremely limited supply.

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