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I have always loved and used Herbin Rouille D'Ancre, which, for all its quirks (listed elsewhere) I find to be a unique "Gentleman's Pink".
. . . . until I discovered a near doppelganger which, ulp, might be an improvement on the original (although similarly loathed by reviewers on here!).
. . . . and then yesterday a third, although this one tends a bit more "rust" . . . . which might also make it the salmon/coral that I have been searching for but not yet found?

Still in the heady days of first love here, so I'll report back with clearer spectacles as the roses fall off, but here's a first sample:


Another arrangement:


I didn't label them as a kind of a quiz!
One is the French original, one is from Japan (ergo costly as a US import), and one is from Germany - but which is which?
(I'd be happy to tell, if anyone is interested!)

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Lovely! Thanks you for the comparison, I'm curious about which is which, but I can wait a bit, I like the suspense ;)

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Would number 2 have a kind of night time luminescence?

Oooh, I'll have to check, but it seems highly likely! This was one of three samples I picked up from the same manufacturer yesterday. The other two, a yellow and an orange, both gave off an extraordinary florescence when the dip-nib was introduced to rinse water. Really quite shocking! I didn't notice so much with this one but as it is designated a "yellow" (?!?) and all three have a yellow base it seems likely that all three share the same base component.


Color can be a great educator!

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I wonder if the 3rd one is Rouille d'ancre?

I remember buying it one a whim and was so excited to fill up a pen.
The initial reaction was to empty it as soon as possible, before I gagged on the colour, the dryish sensation or a combination of both....
With a wide nib and your splendid calligraphy they all look lovely...out of an ancient pristine illumination.... :)

Edited by yazeh
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Thanks for this comparison - very timely as I've just loaded a pen with Rd'A :)

Edited by gmax

✒️ :happyberet:

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I'm not actually hiding anything as I posted the names and manufactures as tags, and I'm thinking anyone who is interested can figure which is which?
My problem now is that I have a (non-depleted) National Strategic Reserve quantity of an ink which I now have preferred options to - do I have to use it all before I upgrade? And which do I upgrade to? The "proper rust" or the "delicate pink" - such dilemmas!!

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Thanks for this comparison - very timely as I've just loaded a pen with Rd'A :)

It's such a coquette - the very opposite of a "well-behaved" ink - but if you're prepared to relax your own expectations and make space for what the ink has to offer, it can lead to quite a romance!


. . . . and make note, one of the other inks here is less saturated still!

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So I tried the more preferred of these options (the "rusty" one) in my traditional "Rusty" pen (A Konrad ebonite "Pine Cone" - which has been a lovely combo for several years) and . . . .

I got anemic hazelnut! Not so good!
. . . . but I like the broad nib where the pink shows so . . . .
(btw - the scan isn't so great but the Diamine is clearly tending Yellow, while the other, we hope, tends pink/orange/brown)
Sold! Must upgrade now!


makes a happy Spring for me!

Edited by pgcauk
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The orange one in the first post leaves a beautiful halo. Like the coral one.

If you are to be ephemeral, leave a good scent.

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Oh, Moonlight did get my attention when I caught a sample in Vromans Bookstore, I have that Stone Road and Soft Snow on my wishlist for sure, but in each instance I have good working equivalents already. Maybe I should get samples at least just to compare, but the path of temptation leads to an empty wallet and over-stocked ink drawer (and various other desktops and overflow surfaces) quite quickly.


The "halos" are at least in part a function of the lovely Tomoe River paper. I had been keeping a Mnemosyme pad as my "posh paper", because it does look posh, but was surprised to find recently that I far prefer my more commonly used Midori and Tomoe River.


I didn't identify those brighter inks clearly, the salmon is de atramentis, the coral is Monteverde and a.n.orange is the continually surprising Diamine Autumn Oak, which seems to combine red,yellow and green elements to mostly arrive at orange - varying from an anaemic orange (that I really like for annotation) in a dryish nib to a strong red in a dip pen. Too good to be a 'seasonal ink' that one!

Edited by pgcauk
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So I guess this has been an online divorce? Hopefully an amiable parting! After three years of having my "Rusty" pen always available, and being delighted by it with every use, it has now been retired (replaced by a boring brown, no less!), and winging it's way to me is a full bottle of De Atramentis' Ochre, which will hopefully arrive before my sample is drained.

I had the Kobe Goshikiyama Ochre as a "maybe once this bottle runs out" replacement for Rusty, it's very close but a little more delicate and less obviously pink, but the De Atramentis has caught me! In my old "Rusty" pen it was a ghastly washed out hazelnut, but in a broad wet nib it is a ravishing subdued pinkish brown - exactly what I was hoping for from De Atramentis Salmon/Lachs, but that is thin and bright while this is complex and subdued. I am finding that the more "toned down" a writing ink is, the more satisfying it can be as a long term companion?

Farewell for now Rusty! You were my first love and won't be forgotten!

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