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Noodler's Ink (and ballpoints too) torture testing (long)


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It's refreshing when I discover an *honest* company, a company who's grandiose product claims are actually true, be it SureFire's *under*reporing of their lumen outputs, or Spyderco's truly *RUSTPROOF* Salt series H-1 knives

 

Add Noodler's Ink company to that list....

 

I recieved my bottles of Noodler's three days ago (Luxury Blue and Manhattan Black), and was eagerly awaiting putting them to the torture test. this thread is a compilation of those few days torturing inks;

 

Day 1, I inked the test papers with Noodler's Luxury Blue and Manhattan Black, Waterman Blue-Black, a UniBall Signo 207, a Bic Crystal Gel, a Sharpie, a Fisher Bullet, and Zebra 701

the test paper was generic 20# bond scrap paper that had laser printer toner on the backside, one sheet was the Xylene test, the other, the 409

 

stage 1, water exposure (1 minute running water)....

Noodlers inks; unaffected

Uni-Ball; unaffected

Bic Crystal; slight feathering

Sharpie; unaffected

Fisher Bullet; unaffected

Zebra 701; unaffected

Waterman Blue-Black; 90% washed away

 

Stage 2 (home solvents, soaked until saturation then air dried);

Lysol Bathroom Cleaner with Bleach and the Goof Off 2 Citrus cleaner did nothing

Formula 409 Glass and Surface cleaner;

Noodlers inks; faint feathering

Uni-Ball; distinct feathering

Sharpie; unaffected

Bic Crystal; slight feathering

Fisher Bullet; unaffected

Zebra 701; unaffected

Waterman Blue-Black; 95% washed away

 

Stage 3; Original Goof Off Xylene formula (also known as offset printing press deglazing solvent, the stuff used to clean ink off the printing press ink rollers)

Noodlers inks; unaffected

Uni-Ball; unaffected

Bic Crystal; heavy feathering

Sharpie; heavy feathering

Fisher Bullet; light feathering

Zebra 701; heavy feathering and ink seperating into base colors (yellow and black)

Waterman Blue-Black; 99% washed away

**note, the Goof Off was also eating away at the laser printer toner on the back of the paper at this point, it's nasty stuff....

 

Stage 4; take the Formula 409 test sheet and expose it to water, let dry, then expose to Xylene;

Noodlers inks; unaffected

Uni-Ball; unaffected

Bic Crystal; 90% gone

Sharpie; heavy feathering and blurring

Fisher Bullet; medium feathering

Zebra 701; heavy feathering and ink seperating into base colors (yellow and black) 80% gone

Waterman Blue-Black; washed away

 

Stage 5; take the Xylene test sheet and expose it to Formula 409;

Noodlers inks; unaffected

Uni-Ball; unaffected

Bic Crystal; 90% gone

Sharpie; indistinct black blob

Fisher Bullet; medium feathering

Zebra 701; no further effects

Waterman Blue-Black; out of the running

 

Stage 6; expose the Xylene test sheet to water;

Noodlers inks; unaffected

Uni-Ball; unaffected

Bic Crystal; 95% gone

Sharpie; featureless black blob

Fisher Bullet; medium-heavy feathering

Zebra 701; no further effects

Waterman Blue-Black; Disqualified, nothing there at all

 

From this most unscientific (and confusing) test, I can gather the following info;

 

the clear winners in this test are the Noodler's "Bulletproof" inks, they *are* truly eternal, any ink that can stand up to Xylene exposure so powerful that it strips toner off the *other side of the paper* has real staying power, for some reason, however, the Noodlers took more damage from the 409 than from the Xylene, the 409 caused light feathering, but did not remove the ink from the paper

 

for some reason, the 409 was a tougher test than the Xylene for the Noodlers, yet the Noodler's shrugged off the Xylene which really hit the other inks bad

 

the Uni-Ball Signo did surprisingly well, not bad for a $2 pen, the pigment-based ink it uses is almost as durable as the Noodlers

 

the Sharpie was a surprise as well, it really was hit bad by the Xylene, and once damaged by it, other chemicals and even plain old water exposure really made it worse

 

the Fisher bullet feathered more than i thought it would, but it wasn't bad per se

 

the two biggest dissapointments were the Waterman Blue-Black, that failed the simple water test, and the Bic Crystal Gel wich just did nothing well, it was mediocre all around

 

the biggest surprise overall was the Zebra 701, it held up far longer than I thought it would

 

So; Day 1 final rankings;

 

First Place; Noodler's Luxury Blue and Manhattan Black, these inks are truly bulletproof

Second Place; Uni-Ball Signo; in terms of durability per dollar, it's a clear winner, the best value of any of the inks/pens

Third Place; Fisher Bullet; it feathered more than expected, but ended up just a hair behind the Uni-Ball in final readability

Honorable Mention; Zebra 701, it put up a valiant fight, and performed far better than expected, but ultimately it *did* fail

 

Biggest Dissapointments;

Sharpie and Bic Crystal, just no real durability to speak of...

 

I took a look at the Xylene sheet that I exposed to 409 before heading home, at this point the paper was dry, a bit on the curly side, but still usable, however, there *was* some faint feathering from the Noodler's inks, still readable, i'd hazard a guess less than 5% feathering

 

*something* in that 409 really reacts with Noodlers......

 

later that evening, after work, I was looking through my old aquarium supplies, and found a bottle of Melafix (1% Melaleuca Alternafolia Tea Tree oil), Melaleuca oil is a very powerful natural solvent, even 1% is very pungent, has a kind of pine-y, citruss-y aroma

 

So I grabbed another sheet;

Noodler's Luxury Blue and Manhattan Black; definite feathering and runniness, probably 10-15% depending on how heavy the ink was laid down, definite blurring of letters, still readable though, and obvious that the ink had been tampered with

Cross Fine-Point ballpoint; maybe 5% feathering

Fisher Space Pen; 30% or so feathering, this one was hit hard by the melaleuca oil, letters are getting a little blobby

Waterman Blue-Black; GONE! nothing but a blue blur

Parker Quink; GONE! nothing but a black blur

 

expose the melaleuca treated sheet to water...

....Fascinating.....

the Noodlers inks actually got *less* feathery, it looks like the water was simply washing away some of the ink that didn't bond with the paper, ink that the melaleuca oil loosened

Cross; same thing, a little sharper

Fisher; same thing; the water was simply washing away the "excess" ink that didn't bond with the paper

Waterman Blue Black; wait a minute, I'm *sure* i wrote something here, but there's nothing to see, no evidence of ink....

Parker Quink; same thing, nothing there

 

so, the powerful solvent Melaleuca oil only loosened the excess ink on the Noodler's, Cross and Fisher line, but obliterated Quink and Waterman B/B....

 

then again, obliterating Waterman B/B and Quink isn't exactly difficult then, is it? ;)

 

Yesterday at work, I decided to do a little "Check Washing" test, I grabbed one of my old voided checks, and inked it up with Noodlers, the Uni-Ball Signo 207, a generic Paper-Mate ball-point, a Bic Crystal Gel, a Fisher Bullet, and Zebra 701 ball-point, the check was allowed to dry completely between "treatments"

 

Test 1; Xylene exposure;

Noodlers; unaffected

Uni-Ball Signo; unaffected

Bic Gel; unaffected

Paper-Mate Ball-point; *heavy* feathering, and 50% reduction in ink intensity

Fisher Bullet; heavy feathering, but otherwise unaffected

Zebra 701; unaffected

Anti-Tampering features of the check; activated, the check is riddled with red and blue spots which do not fade after the xylene dries, it's obvious the check has been tampered with

 

Test 2; expose the Xylene-d check to a water rinse (one minute, hot water)

Noodlers; unaffected

Uni-Ball Signo; unaffected

Bic Gel; 90% washed away, only a faint residue of ink remains

Paper-Mate Ball-point; 95% washed away, almost completely gone

Fisher Bullet; heavy blobbing, the letters are starting to run together

Zebra 701; 10% reduction in ink intensity

Anti-Tampering features of the check; activated, the spots become more prominent with water exposure

 

Test 3; Expose the Xylene-d and hot water rinsed check to 409;

at this point, the check is unusable anyway, so at this point, all I'm trying to do is remove the Noodler's and Uni-Ball inks, both inks are pigment-based and bond with the cellulose fibers in the paper, in theory, making them unremovable without damaging the paper in the process

Noodlers; unaffected

Uni-Ball Signo; unaffected

Bic Gel; 97% washed away, only a faint residue of ink remains

Paper-Mate Ball-point; 98% washed away, almost completely gone

Fisher Bullet; heavy blobbing, the letters are starting to run together

Zebra 701; 50% reduction in ink intensity, the ink is black directly out of the pen, now it's a faint blue

Anti-Tampering features of the check; activated, the spots become more prominent with water exposure, but not much change with 409

 

Test #4; Lysol Household cleaner with Bleach applied to the Xylene/water/409'ed check;

Noodlers; unaffected

Uni-Ball Signo; unaffected

Bic Gel; Completely gone! like it wasn't even there....

Paper-Mate Ball-point; completely gone, no evidence of any lettering

Fisher Bullet; blobbing is gone, but the ink has faded a good 90%, faint, grayish-black but still readable

Zebra 701; Completely gone!

Anti-Tampering features of the check; activated, hitting the check with Bleach *REALLY* activated the anti-tampering features, the check now has an ugly brown cast on it

 

Final thoughts;

It kind of scares me at how easy it was to remove the ball-point ink, and considering a large percentage of checks and such are written with the mundane, classic ball-point pen, it's a little unnerving to see the ink removed with so little effort, ball-points in general are less secure than pigment-based pens like the Uni-Ball Signo or Permanent fountain pen inks, pigment based inks actually soak into the paper fibers, bonding with the paper and staining the cellulose fibers, ball-point ink sits on top of the paper and if it bonds at all with the paper, it's barely with the top of the paper, bleach strips off ball-point ink terrifyingly effectively, it....just....dissolves

 

the solution is obvious, if you want the most secure ink for writing checks or signing legal documents, you need to use a fountain pen with Permanent ink, or a pigment based roller-ball (like the Signo) something that sinks into the paper fibers and bonds with them, nothing short of a direct thermonuclear blast will affect Noodlers or the Uni-Ball Signo ink, once it's on paper, it's permanent

 

Pen/ink ratings;

Noodler's "Bulletproof" inks; Honesty in advertising, this ink withstands every attempt to remove it, the only effective means of removing Noodler's will damage the paper beyond the point of usability, this ink *IS* permanent and eternal

Uni-Ball Signo 207; a great sleeper of a pen, in terms of value for the money

Bic Gel; smooth writing, but ultimately not secure

Paper-Mate; horrible performance and easily removed ink

Fisher Bullet; decent performance, the best ball-point of the group, even though the ink does run and feather when exposed to solvents, it doesn't become unreadable or fade completely away

Zebra 701; surprisingly good performance for a non-pressurized mundane ball-point pen, easily outperforms the Paper-Mate, but not the Fisher Bullet

 

Basically, if you want a durable ink in your fountain pen, the only real choice is Noodler's, if you just want a good, basic, secure pen and don't want to spend a lot, get the Uni-Ball Signo 207, it passed the same brutal chemical assaults that the Noodler's did

 

Before I went to my apartment last night, I decided to stop off at home and scare Mom and Dad with my newfound knowledge...

 

I took a couple voided checks, inked them up with various inks, and tried my final chemical test...

 

91% Isopropyl alcohol

 

the effects were *immediate*

Noodlers; unaffected

Uni-Ball Signo; unaffected

Cross ballpoint; 5 seconds for smearing to occur, ink gone after about a minute or so

Fisher Space Pen; 5 seconds for heavy smearing, ink 98% gone after about 2 minutes

 

Both Mom and Dad were shall we say, stunned at how easily ballpoint ink vanished from the check, but what scared me is the fact that the alcohol barely triggered the tamper-proof ink on the check, unless you knew what to look for, you wouldn't notice the tiny, faint blue and red dots on the check paper, and when the alcohol fully dried, the paper was just as pliable and unwrinkled as it was before it's alcohol bath.

 

a cursory glance of the check shows nothing suspicious, it looks like a _blank_ check (aside from the Noodlers and Uniball ink writing), there is just *no* ballpoint ink left on the check, the alcohol removed it totally

 

So, after i showed them how easy it was to wash a check, I gave each of them a Uni-Ball Signo 207, and reccomended they use it, they were quite appreciative, yes I should have given them fountain pens loaded with Noodler's, but neither of them would appreciate a "high maintenance" pen, sadly

 

It's great to have a technically-minded, analytical son who does all sorts of unneccecary but cool experiments...

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Great experiments! I need to get me some Noodlers..

 

 

Oh and :thumbup: for the Surefire and Spyderco references. 2 awesome companies for sure.

- Brad -

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Neat. I had read about the bulletproof ink in a 207 and have one but never tested it.

 

 

On the Noodlers side you can add steaming hot / boiling bleach, ammonia, and vinegar (acetic acid). No effect.

 

I have yet to try hydrogen peroxide, and a mixture of H2O2 50/50 with vinegar which vigorously attacks certain materials.

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Great article! I wonder how the ubiquitous Parker Jotter ballpoint refills would fair under your tests.

 

-Mike

Good idea. I'll test one tonight, i'd bet they'd respond somewhere between the Cross BP and the Paper-Mate (no resistance to alcohol/bleach)

 

I may have some old photo chemicals left over as well, which means I can try Indicator Stop Bath (Glacial Aceitic Acid) and the hardener from Kodak Rapid Fix (Sulfuric Acid)

Edited by MacTech
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Here's a little teaser of the next chemical to be tested....

 

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Hardener.jpg

 

Cue Evil Laughter! BWAHAHAHA!

 

Well...this was fascinating, and unexpected....

I'll let the pictures do the talking....

 

91% Isopropyl Alcohol;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Checktestbefore.jpg

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Checktestafter.jpg

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Alcoholtestafter.jpg

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Alcoholtest2.jpg

 

Sulfuric Acid;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Sulfuricbefore.jpg

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Sulfuricafter.jpg

Edited by MacTech
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Cue Evil Laughter! BWAHAHAHA!

 

Mac,

 

These are great tests, thank you!! (Edited comment out. Apparently I've been using Signos for a year now and didn't know it. Never looked at the name, but I knew what I liked. WOO HOO!) Thank you for taking the time to do these tests and post your results. Great stuff.

 

Welcome to the forum, too! Nice to see a fellow flashaholic, too! ;) Love my SF's!!

 

~~King

Edited by KingJoe
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I've long been a fan of the Uni-ball Vision (which apparently uses the same ink as the signo).

 

I've also done a few tests like exposing the writing to steam, for example.

 

Three solvents I'd like to see:

* Chloroform. (Yes, it's used to knock people out in the movies... it's also a commonly used solvent for chromatography)

* Acetone (I take that back - Noodler's is unaffected.)

* Methanol/Ethanol (probably similar to Isopropyl)

* Nitromethane (as likely to eat the paper as the ink... though it would take months). Used to strip paint, and to give alcohol burning engines more kick.

* Dimethyl Sulfoxide (DMSO) My brother calls this stuff the "universal organic solvent". It's so powerful that after skin exposure to DMSO you'll begin to taste it (described as oyster or garlic like) as the stuff is absorbed through the skin and into your blood. DMSO absorbs through skin easily, and then allows other things to get through as well. I've heard if you then dip your finger in cola you'll start tasting the cola after a few minutes. It can be dangerous stuff; by itself it's pretty benign and even helpful, but it affects human tissue enough that many things your skin comes in contact with can be absorbed through the skin and into the bloodstream - be it prescription drugs (it is used in many patch drugs), cola, fruit juice, gasoline, soap, ink, poison, etc. Skin still stays intact if exposure is brief, but the protective 'barrier' of the skin is lost in the exposed area for a while.

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+3 for Surefire!

 

And Scott Clawson (Milkyspit) is the Richard Binder of Surefires.

 

I think something attracts us to bulletproof qualities...

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Thanks to you, I have bit the bullet and bought a Uni-Ball Signo 207 and two spare UMR-87 refills. Excellent ink flow, though I'm not completely won over by the squishy/slimy grip. Does not inspire confidence.

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I must now deface a couple of checks. I want to show the simple Isopropyl alcohol test to steadfast non-believer.

 

Thanks for these results. It's more than I wanted to go through, and I'm grateful you were willing.

Scribere est agere.

To write is to act.

___________________________

Danitrio Fellowship

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How about the Sulfuric Acid drain cleaner?

Hell, try Drano?

Then theres this stuff the MTA uses to clean the NYC subways...some lye based solution

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I just tested another ink for it's durability, for consistency purposes in my ink torture tests, I've decided to use 91% isopropyl alcohol and Xylene as test chemicals, as they're the easiest for me to get

 

the pen in question is a ROtring 600 Rollerball with the standard Rotring refill, compared against a Parker Jotter with Parker refill and a Zebra 701;

 

91% Isopropyl test-

Rotring 600 Rollerball; slight bleeding of a yellowish pigment around the outside edges of the letters, but no reduction in darkness of the ink, no feathering, no smearing, the letters hold up just fine, but just ooze a little yellow,

Parker Ballpoint; 99% removal of ink

Zebra 701; 85% removal of ink, faint readable lettering remains

 

Xylene test-

Rotring 600 Rollerball; no further degrading of lettering, completely unaffected

Parker Ballpoint; Completely gone, no evidence of ink remains

Zebra 701; 95% removal of ink, there is a faint, readable image, but it's almost gone

 

As I've stated before, the Zebra 701's refill holds up admirably for an inexpensive clickie ballpoint, but it ultimately has the same weakness to solvents as any other standard ballpoint refill

 

the Rotring 600 Rollerball's ink refill appears to be bulletproof**, a rather pleasant surprise, I was expecting it to have similar performance (or lack thereof) to the Bic Crystal Gel, which was utterly craptacular

 

no the Rotring 600's not a Fountain pen (although it appears to share the same barrel, anyone have a spare Rotring 600 front section/nib assembly they'd like to sell? ;) ), but it's definitely a nice pen, I'll write up a review of it this evening and put it in the pen review section

 

**see update below, for surprising results....

Edited by MacTech
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It'd be interesting to see how well the Diamine Registrar's ink fares in all this.

deirdre.net

"Heck we fed a thousand dollar pen to a chicken because we could." -- FarmBoy, about Pen Posse

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Once again, I'll let the photos do the talking first, and finish with my observations

 

*BEFORE* shot;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Inktest2baseline.jpg

 

After about 5 minutes of exposure to 91% Isopropyl alcohol;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Inktest2alcohol.jpg

Looks like the Rotring and, amazingly, the Parker Quink are doing *great*, shrugging off alcohol with ease, and a slight amount of yellowing on the Rotring ink......

 

After a 5 minute hot water rinse;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Inktest2water.jpg

a closer look at the final results;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Inktest2waterclose.jpg

 

Final thoughts on Ink Torture Test #2....

 

Once again, Noodler's inks prove their durability with flying colors, and look at how rich blue Luxury Blue is when delivered via dip-pen

as expected, the Parker Jotter and Cross inks were the first to go, the Parker ink dissolved much faster, 90% of the damage to the Parker ink happened within the first 30 seconds, the Cross ink took almost the full 5 minutes to fade away, and once again, the Fisher ink shows surprising durability for a ballpoint, if you *have* to use a ballpoint, the Fisher refils exhibit the most durability

 

the UniBall Signo ink shows remarkable durability, right up there with Noodler's, the Signo and other rollerballs using this ink are great beater pens

 

I held out high hopes for the Rotring ink, it flows well, it's a rich, dark black, and the rollerball refill has the feel of a nice fountain pen, it passed the alcohol test well, but utterly failed at the simple water rinse, I retract my earlier statement, Rotring Rollerball ink IS NOT BULLETPROOF!, thus, the Rotring rollerball refill (RRR!) is not sutibale for my use, I want to use durable, bulletproof inks, Noodler's qualifies, as does the UniBall Signo ink, so I cut down a Signo 207 refill and dropped it into the Rotring Rollerball, voila! a well made, "bulletproof" pen that uses "bulletproof" ink

 

the Mont Blanc rollerball refill was also surprising, surprisingly *bad* paperfeel, scratchy and rough, it felt more like a cheap Bic Stic ballpoint than the supposed "luxury" brand it masquerades as, I was expecting, nay, even *hoping* that this ink would fail so I could laugh and rejoyce at the utter failure of a "poseur" pen brand, I was looking forward to emitting a hearty, Nelson Muntz-esque "HA-HAA!" at the craptacular performance of the MB ink....

 

I was wrong, say what you will about the thoroughly horrible paperfeel and gritty roller ball refill itself, i can't deny that the ink itself performed admirably well, I wonder if the ink in the MB rollerball is the same Iron Gall ink used in MB's fountain pens?

 

taking the ink itself into account, it does lay down a nice, intense black, darker than the UniBall, and right up there with Noodler's Old Manhattan, it just needs a better delivery system

 

the Parker Quink performed admirably in the alcohol bath, it performed so well that I thought it might have been cross-contaminated with some residue of the Noodler's Black i had previously run in the orange reground Waterman Kultur that I had just turned into an eyedropper pen, so that's why i used the dip pen to put down some pure, unadulterated Quink to test against

 

Biggest surprise in the test? the Mont Blanc rollerball refills, I'm torn between returning them to Staples, as they don't really fit in the Rotring 600 RB, and there's no safe way to cut the refill down to size as there is with the plastic UniBall refill, but I do like how the ink performs, then again, I can get the same performance for a quarter of the price with the UniBall refills, and they can be trimmed to fit the Rotring

 

Biggest dissapointment? the Rotring 600 Rollerball cartridge, I LOVE the 600 RB pen itself (I still want to find a FP nib and converter for it though, i'm 90% certain that the RB and FP share the same barrel and cap), but the non-bulletproof ink is a real dealbreaker for me

 

<EDIT>

I've almost done the *unthinkable* (no, not willingly used a Bic Stic... ;) ) I've *almost* removed Noodler's Luxury Blue from paper, i'd say that 75% of the ink has been removed.....

 

....although the paper's in pretty rough shape....

 

I found a bottle of "Super Clean" degreaser that i had previously used to strip the anodizing from Aircraft Aluminum, I was removing the type II anodizing from my SureFire 6P, it also removed the Type III Mil-Spec anodizing from a Executive series SureFire, it's some powerful stuff....

 

active ingredients are;

Butoxyethanol, Nonyl Phenol Polyethoxylate, Sodium Xylene Sulfonate, and Sodium Hydroxide (the active ingredient that removes the anodizing from aluminum)

 

Before;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Inktest2baseline.jpg

 

After;

http://homepage.mac.com/mactechg4/.Pictures/Inktest2superclean.jpg

 

I can finally point at the Mont Blanc ink and say [Nelson Muntz] HA-HAA![/Nelson], the Super Clean *Super-Obliterated* the horribly overpriced, underperforming Mont Blanc ink, it was outperformed by the Fisher Space Pen BALLPOINT ink, even the lowly $2 Uni-Ball Signo outperformed it, admittedly the Signo *WAS* hit hard and did lose some intensity, but nowhere near as bad as the Mont Blanc

 

and Noodler's Old Manhattan Black stands proud and tall, unaffected by whatever I throw at it....

 

Edited by MacTech
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Ink Micrography - observations of how ink interacts with paper on the microscopic level;

 

I've been playing around with my inexpensive Radio Shack hand-held microscope, I zoomed the magnification out to 100X, and observed how the ink interacted with the paper fibers;

 

Paper-Mate ballpoint; the ink is *clearly* just lying on the surface, i'd say about 30% of the paper fibers are stained with ink, and there are distinct areas of paper fibers untouched by the ink, even in the ink path itself

 

Zebra 701 ballpoint; even worse performance, only about 15% of the paper fiber is stained, not sure if this is due to the refill being a fine point, or just a characteristic of the ink, because the Zebra ink withstands chemicals and water better than the Paper Mate

 

Uni-Ball Signo Medium point; 98% of the paper fibers in the ink path have been stained, and it's clear that the ink has sunken into the paper fibers, the only fibers without ink on them are those on the surface, they're aren't many though

 

Fisher Bullet; this one looks closer to the Uni-Ball than the other ballpoints, it appears that some of the Fisher ink has actually sunken into the paper fibers, but there are also lots of unstained fibers in the ink path as well, probably 35% coverage

 

Waterman Fine Point Kultur with Noodler's Old Manhattan Black; 100% coverage, *ALL* paper fibers in the ink path have been stained by the ink, it looks rich and dark, all the light from the tiny incandescent bulb in the microscope is absorbed into the ink, no shiny spots or unstained paper fibers

 

Rotring 600 with Fine point Uni-Ball Signo refill; 99% ink coverage, not as intensely black as the Noodler's, but no unstained fibers either, where there were unstained fibers in the Uni-Ball medium point, there are only "partially" stained fibers in the Rotring/UniBall sample

 

Lamy 2000 with Noodler's OMB; do the words "Quantum Singularity" mean anything to you, if anything, we're talking 105% coverage, all light from the microscope bulb is absorbed, it's difficult to make out any detail in the paper fibers in the ink path, they're....just....black no lighter spots, no unstained fibers, total ink coverage

 

I also looked at some of my work orders with the crappy paper under 100X magnification, and it's clear that the paper is lower quality, you can count the individual wood pulp fibers, and see where small amounts of OMB has run off in different directions following the "grain" of the pulp, by means of comparison, the "good" paper has a much smoother finish, the individual paper fibers are much harder to discern, they have a more "rounded off" appearance, whereas the crappy paper has "sharper" fibers

 

I'll try to get some pictures of the ink micrography, but it's going to be tough as I have no USB microscope, and I'll have to jury-rig together my RS microscope and digicam, probably with liberal use of duct tape or something....

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  • 1 month later...

Have you tested uni-ball Vision Elites yet? I'd like to know how your tests fair with that ink.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

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Vision Elite is supposed to use the same ink as the Uni-Ball Signo that was tested.

RAPT

Pens:Sailor Mini, Pelikan Grand Place, Stipula Ventidue with Ti Stub nib, Pelikan M605 with Binder Cursive Italic, Stipula Ventidue with Ti M nib, Vintage Pilot Semi-flex, Lamy Vista, Pilot Prera

For Sale:

Saving for: Edison Pearl

In my dreams: Nakaya Piccolo, custom colour/pattern

In transit:

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Fantastic tests and enlightening results - particularly the ballpoint and rollerball results. I've used some of the Uniball pens for awhile and the ink does appear to be pretty reliable when I need one.

 

One ink that would be very interesting to see is the Pilot G-2 refills - as I use them in a Waterman rollerball body with some regularity when not using a fountain pen. I seem to recall something on the packaging about archival qualities but I might be mistaken. Nevertheless, I know that it is a popular rollerball among many here on FPN so I suspect others may also enjoy seeing those results.

A pen a day keeps the doctor away...

 

Parker "51" flighter; Parker 75 cisele; Conway Stewart Dandy Demonstrator; Aurora 88P chrome; Sailor Sapporo ; Lamy 2000; Lamy 27 double L; Lamy Studio; Pilot Murex; Pilot Sesenta (Red/Grey); Pilot Capless (black carbonesque); Pilot Custom 74 Demonstrator; Pilot Volex; Waterman Expert 2000 (slate blue)

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