Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Review: Comparison of 4 Black Fountain Pen Inks

4 different Blacks

Noodler's Bulletproof Black was the first fountain pen ink I bought for my first fountain pen - a Lamy Safari. It's been my "go-to" ink since the beginning. It's always in at least one of my pens.

I decided to do a test to see how my 4 different black inks looked on white paper. (A Canson Universal Sketch Pad) I was too lazy to flush & fill any of my pens 4 times, so I decided to use a Brause Calligraphy Pen with a Steno Nib (love it!) to try all 4 inks. Dip/Wipe much easier than Flush/Fill.

Of the 4, from lightest to darkest: (to my eyes)

Pelikan Brilliant Black
Sailor Jentle Black
Noodler's Bulletproof Black
J. Herbin Pearle Noire

4 different Blacks after flooding with water

Then I took a second sheet of paper and blasted under the faucet - hot water, dribbled some dish soap on it.... All of the inks hung in to some degree, though the Noodler's was clearly the leader. (Hence the "Bulletproof" branding) I like the blackness of the Herbin, so I'm glad to see that it came in a close second.

No idea why I bought the Pelikan, I guess I was hoping it would be darker than the Noodler's. No Dice. Bought the Sailor hoping it would be as smooth as their Blue-Black, but so far, I'm not really seeing that. Needs to be tried in another pen or two. Loving the Herbin... Perhaps it will come to replace the Noodler's.

1 oz of Pelikan Brilliant Black: $5.50
3oz of Noodler's Bulletproof Black: $12.50
50 ml of Sailor Jentle Black: $12.75 (1.69 oz)
30 ml of J. Herbin Perle Noire: $8.75 (1.01 oz)

Prices quoted are from Pear Tree Pens

5 comments:

Murderface said...

Ya know, I'm coming around to your way of thinking on J. Herbin's pricing. Yeah, sure it's pretty much the most expensive ink per volume out there, but even 30 mL lasts a long, long time in all but the fattest nibs.

Life's too short to skimp on ink only because of its price.

More Herbin inks, starting with Perle Noire, are in my future.

Biffybeans said...

Yay Murderface! Herbin inks are really sweet.

At the rate that I go through ink, I'm going to need to leave provisions for them in my will. Each of my 12 pens are inked with a different color, and though I write an awful lot, it's about every two-three weeks or so that they all get flushed & re-filled.

Anonymous said...

Have you tried Platinum's carbon ink? That's the blackest black that I have ever used. JetPens carries it I believe.

Anonymous said...

Not to mention Namiki black ... and the smell of it ... ahhhhh

Anonymous said...

I actually like Pelikan Black a lot! I'm using it in a vintage Parker Duofold, and it's as black as black can get. However, since it's a dry ink (as most Pelikan inks are), it really requires a very wet nib to properly shine!

Regards,
DragoĊŸ

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