Some random thoughts on the acquisition and subsequent non-use of a specific ink.
Anyone who is a fountain pen enthusiast or hobbyist comes across these ink brands sooner or later. These are not ultra special or luxury brands. Rather, they are brands that have a lot of chatter about them in the fountain pen communities. Not merely the brands, but specific inks within them also get widely discussed . In the Iroshizuku series from Pilot, Kon-peki and Yama-budo get a lot of mentions. In Noodler’s Inks, Baystate Blue is infamous for its go-everywhere, stain-everything property.
A somewhat lesser talked about, but definitely well-known ink is the Noodler’s Ink Apache Sunset. I acquired mine many moons ago (see what I did there!), and it lay unused for a while before I ventured to use a tiny bit of it in one pen. For you see, while these inks have their particular cachet, they themselves are not easy to come by. Procuring them involves knowing the right people or being part of the right communities – which means WhatsApp or Telegram groups here. It also involves knowing a little bit about the more trustworthy individuals from whom you can buy without fear of getting price-gouged.
For many items (this includes pens, nibs, inks, paper, notebooks, notepads, accessories) very often the chase is more engaging than the item itself. After a long and involved acquisition process, after the initial taking a picture and sharing in the community, they lie unused, or used merely once. All of us have far too many pens, inks, paper, and everything else connected with the hobby to actually end up using everything.
And so the bottle languished for a while before I ended up using it in a single pen. One thing that you always read about Noodler’s Inks is how you have to be really careful while opening the bottle – they are filled to the brim and could easily spill if handled without much care. I opened mine with the care and delicate touch used by a bomb disposal specialist defusing an explosive device in a crowded city center.
As you can see, my caution was justified, and a not a single drop was spilt. After a few initial scribblings, which consisted mostly of writing my name, the name of the ink and the pen it was in, a series of vertical and horizontal lines, and finally a series of interconnected but incomplete lower case letter ‘s’s the ink did not see much use. All that changed when I got some good paper – this refers to paper specifically made to be used with fountain pens. The ink was beautiful on them, and rapidly found itself in more pens and being used in more situations. Today, it’s one of my regular note-taking inks, and cheers up many a dreary meeting!
The ink bottle holds 3 ounces – around 90 ml. Considering even the most capacious of my fountain pens holds hardly a couple of milliliters of ink, that’s a lot of ink, and I am not going to finish off the bottle. I also have a bunch of sample vials. If you have a hankering to use this ink, hit me up and I’ll be happy to swap samples with you.
Here’s a detailed review of the ink from superstar Ink Reviewer, Kelli :