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Parker Quink Black Gets a Bad Rap


davidtaylorjr

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Picked up a bottle of Parker Quink Black on Amazon and it arrived today. I really don't understand the reviews complaining about it not being a true black, it looks just as black as Noodler's in my opinion.

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I haven't used Quink Black much, but one of my medium nibbed Sailors has been inked with it for a little while now and the ink comes out perfectly black. I like it. I also like that there isn't much sheen, so it isn't distracting. It doesn't appear grey at all (though it can at first, esp if the pen has just been cleaned with water).

 

Waterman inks get such love (and rightly so, after too long I finally bought their Serenity Blue and Intense Black and I like them a lot), whereas Quink gets panned quite a lot, even though their behaviours appear identical (incl their respective blue blacks) and are rumoured to indeed be exactly the same ink.

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Its a bit charcoal grey, but its ok. I grew to hate it, I think,  because I associated it with school.

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I don't mind using it (and their teal Blue Black too). Quink are still the only inks easily found to buy here - the office supply chain has them - so they were my first inks. I think of them fondly.

It's all about the greys...

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I'm not wild about Quink Black specifically because if I want a black ink, it's not a rich enough black ink for me. Blue-black I'm fine with even if I don't use it a ton.

 

As for the other Quinks-among the blues I have a sample around here if anyone is interested in seeing it of the same text written side-by-side out of the same pen(an XF 51 Vac) that shows Quink Washable Blue and Waterman Serenity Blue are most definitely not the same ink. I have a love-hate relationship with Washable Blue, as it's possibly the safest/easiest to clean out ink out there(more so than even Waterman or Pelikan) thanks to how little dye it has in it. On the other hand, it's just too light/washed out for me. Permanent Blue, which isn't easy to find in the US, is a different story. I haven't done a side-by-side with the same pen, but I think it's a darker, richer blue than Waterman.

 

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4 hours ago, davidtaylorjr said:

it looks just as black as Noodler's in my opinion

 

Actually, I'll go so far as to say that if you don't need the Bulletproofness, it's a *better* black than Noodler's Black. I really don't care much for Noodler's black at all. Almost every other black ink I've tried performed better than all the Noodler's black ink I've been able to get, at least in terms of color and nice look on the page (Noodler's Black is well behaved). 

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12 hours ago, Uncial said:

I grew to hate it, I think,  because I associated it with school.

lol there it is!

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Well, inspired by your praise, I went to test it in a few pens.... since I've got some spare bottles. Ugh. Maybe it's because of their age, but in my view the bad rap is totally reserved. A far cry from black.

a fountain pen is physics in action... Proud member of the SuperPinks

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I have a bottle of Parker Quink Black from 2000 (Made in China, ironically), and  a bottle of Noodler's Borealis Black bought just recently.  As far as my eye can tell, there is no difference in "blackness" between the two.    

 

The Quink Black, though, turns to bright blue color when paper it is written on is placed underwater.  Noodler's Borealis Black remains black, even when the paper it is written on is underwater.

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1 hour ago, mhguda said:

Well, inspired by your praise, I went to test it in a few pens.... since I've got some spare bottles. Ugh. Maybe it's because of their age, but in my view the bad rap is totally reserved. A far cry from black.

It is my understanding that they changed the formula in the last few years so that may be the issue? But it is just as black as any other black ink I have.

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I will admit that I have not seen this new formulation black Quink for sale here, actually the only one they seem to carry is blue black, which is not bad in my view, although I did prefer the - no longer available? - permanent blue. And I tried a Waterman intense black too, and that seemed just as bad, while I do remember that one as being nicely dark and, well, intensely black. So it may be my pens, or the paper (Kokuyo in a soft-ring B5 notebook, also my Brepols planner) that is giving me this disappointing run-in with the two black inks...

a fountain pen is physics in action... Proud member of the SuperPinks

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On 2/8/2022 at 12:57 AM, AmandaW said:

I don't mind using it (and their teal Blue Black too). Quink are still the only inks easily found to buy here - the office supply chain has them - so they were my first inks. I think of them fondly.

About 2 or 3 years ago Parker changed their Blue Black. Now it doesn’t turns into teal anymore and remains a nice really Blue Black after drying. 

 

Joop

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In this post Waterman Serenity Blue is compared to Parker Washable Blue, but you should compare it to Parker Permanent Blue because they look identical to me. I share the love-hate relation with Parker Washable Blue. Very nice colour, good writing properties and very readable for long text because of the low contrast on white paper. Nice ink very good to clean with indeed. The problem is the fading which keeps on going over the years until it’s nearly invisible. The only ink that fades even more in my experience is Pelikan 4001 Blue.

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I rather like it. It has never been totally black for me but I like it all the same. It seems to end up being a very dark bluish-greyish-black, which I find quite fetching! Moreover, it seems to play nicely with every pen I have put it in, no matter how temperamental.

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I seldom use black ink, so I enjoy this colour precisely because it's not too intensely black :happyberet:

✒️ :happyberet:

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If you check a chroma on Parker Quink Black, you will see the other colors in it. I like it for this reason: it is a warm black with some other shades of blue and purple (even yellow). It's very different from my Noodler's Heart of Darkness (when I want a permanent rich black). And my Quink Black has worked in any/all pens (not true of my Noodler's).

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Both Waterman Black and Parker Quink Black seem to use the same dye-pattern in their inks, and could even be based on or be the same formula. Because of the relatively unique dye-combination, I find it to be a relatively neat black ink, and I especially like the subdued color that it has on more absorbent paper compared to some black inks that don't interact with such poor paper as well. However, many people don't like blacks that can shade, and these definitely can on many paper types. 

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