The Great Turquoise Ink Test

With great in quotes! This has taken me forever! I had a hoot setting it up and doing it. Photographing it not so much.

Turquoise Ink Test 28

I used 7 inks:

  1. Iroshizuku Ku-Jaku (Peacock)
  2. Kaweco Paradise Blue
  3. Edelstein Aquamarine
  4. Lamy Turquoise
  5. Iroshizuku Amo-Iro (Sky Blue–probably should not have been included)
  6. Robert Oster Bondi Blue
  7. Robert Oster Fire & Ice

The seven pens were:

  1. Franklin-Christoph Pocket 66 1.1 stub with Ku-Jaku
  2. Edison Beaumont 1.1 wih Paradise Blue (cartridge syringed into a converter)
  3. Lamy Safari 1.1 with Edelstein Aquamarine
  4. Visconti Opera smooth cursive italic with Lamy Turquoise
  5. Sailor Pro-Color Fine with Amo-Iro (again, should not be in here but too late now!)
  6. Platinum 3776 Medium with Robert Oster Bondi Blue
  7. Twsbi Mini Classic 1.1 with Robert Oster Fire & Ice
Turquoise Ink Test The Pens
Left to Right: Lamy Safari; Franklin-Christoph Pocket 66; Visconti Opera; Sailor Pro-Color; Twisbi Mini Classic; Edison Beaumont; Platinum 3776

Turquoise Ink Test The Pens Uncapped

I ended up using eight papers and decided to call a halt after eight. Here they are:

  1. Tamoe River Paper:Turquoise Ink Test Tomoe River Paper
  2. Clairefontaine:Turquoise Ink Test Clairefontaine
  3. Life Noble Notebook:Turquoise Ink Test Life Noble Note
  4. Tsubame Fools Cream Section Notebook:Turquoise Ink Test Tsubame Fools Cream Paper
  5. Rhodia Dot Pad:Turquoise Ink Test Rhodia Dot Pad
  6. Mnem0syne:

    Turquoise Ink Test Mnemosyne
    A typo! or do you call it a hando? Also, a piece of fluff. Sigh. The photos are killing me!
  7. Midori MD Notebook:Turquoise Ink Test Midori MD Notebook
  8. Leuchtturm 1917:Turquoise Ink Test Leuchtturm

The only thing this test did is confirm my bias: Lamy Turquoise is the best turquoise ink hands down! Also confirms my strong dislike of the Kaweco ink. This particular colour is interesting but the ink itself is sludgy and horrible. I have used it in cartridge and extracted ink form in a number of pens and dislike it. A lot.


Noodler’s Habenero

I am not entirely sure how I am going to do these reviews at this point but I will just start and see what happens. It makes sense (in my ink journal) to write on one side only and to put additional pens/nibs inked with particular ink on the facing page. I do plan on adding scans/photographs of the inks.

Gourmet Pens describes Habanero as high shading with medium to high saturation. A fairly wet flow in a rich warm colour. I don’t seem to obtain even a quarter of the shading that is shown on the Gourmet Pens review even using a stub nib. It may be because my bottle is quite old. Possibly I should have given it a good shake before inking. Or, it might need a 1.5 or 1.9 stub to really show its paces. Regardless, I do like the colour which most definitely looks like blood in my TWISBI classic barrel. It doesn’t strike me as a particularly useful ink and an entire page of it is a bit much.

Iroshizuku Tsuyu-Kusa

I have seen some people comment that this ink is too pale or pastel like or unsaturated and it is hard to quarrel with that view; regardless, I like it a lot more than I thought I would (my constant refrain with blue ink!) It is definitely, absolutely blue. Uncomplicated. It doesn’t seem to shade much, if at all, and has no sheen. It is simple and unpretentious. I can readily see it as a good journalling ink. You could go for many pages without getting over whelmed or affected by its visual presence. There is a time and place for simplicity.

Iroshizuku Yama-Guri

Wild Chestnut. This ink is as dark as Montblanc Toffee Brown but has a blackish undertone. It is a very earthy looking ink. Definitely reminds me of forest floor material. I don’t see much shading and in terms of ranking would put it behind the Montblanc and Noodlers–not every day that a Pilot ink ends up third but all things considered, including the price, that is where I put this one. If you were to chose this ink, it would be for its organic look. I can definitely see the lure of that, it is just not super exciting.

Noodler’s Kiowa Pecan

One of those rare inks that is an amazing shader regardless of nib size. As per this quote: Lots of golden shading–or is that lots of chocolate shading in a dark gold/bronze ink. (Sorry, do not know the attribution. Tried searching and still couldn’t find it.) According to, this is a variable combination ink which means each individual bottle contains slightly different variables resulting in a different ink for each bottle!

I cannot say enough good things about this ink. It is a delight.

Noodler’s Legal Lapis

One of the oldest inks I own. Bought back when I was Zentangling. It has an “old-fashioned” look to it. It doesn’t strike me as incredibly well shading and it does seem a bit dry but neither of these are problematic. The vintage look is adequate compensation. I am a bit worried that it might stain. I had a very difficult time getting it out of my Pocket 66 and have still not gotten it completely out which bums me no end. It is supposed to be bullet proof and might be a good ink for work. Many deem this a black ink with hints of blue, green and grey. I have always seen it as blue. notes that in terms of colour, the ink is supposed to mimic the old fashioned iron gall inks used in the 19th century. If that is its aim, I think it has hit the target dead on.

Sailor Jentle Tokiwa-Matsu

Pine Green. It makes me laugh that I have two full bottles of this ink but it took months before I inked anything with it! Obviously, I was greatly attracted to it! It is one of the winter inks. It is supposed to have nice shading. I inked it in my new Kaweco stub which has given me nothing but grief from the moment I purchased it. I just haven’t had time to take it back to the store.

At first blush, the ink looks as good on paper as it did in the store but I need to use it in a pen that actually writes before I can comment much.

Waterman Tender Purple

I intended to get Waterman Imperial Purple but it was out of stock so I settled for a sample of Tender Purple, purchased at the same time as my sample of Noodler’s Violet. This is my first Waterman ink. I find it cold and blue-ish with little or no shading. There is nothing at all about this ink that tempts me to buy a full bottle. Simply not distinctive enough. Not at all unpleasant or misbehaved but quite mediocre. I will try to score a sample of the Imperial in the future.

Noodler’s Violet

Originally I liked this ink but was doubtful it would be good for everyday usage. I have since come to change my mind. I thought it might be a bit “cutesy” or “feminine”. It might just be saved from this by how dark it is. I would have called it Pansy rather than Violet. It is a purple black and looks good in my Lamy Lilac. It is true that I can’t see too many men grabbing this or liking it but I don’t think it is over the top.

I reserved my original opinion but after spending more time with it, I have decided it is worth it to get a full bottle. I would like to get some Lamy Lilac ink but it has not been in stock. This will do as a substitute for now and has made it as a perfect pairing.

Rohrer & Klingner Alt Goldgrun

Ah, at last! Something the crowd goes crazy over and I can join in the mob. I am going crazy over this ink too. It has been a grail ink for some time and I finally coughed up for a bottle. The bottle and label are boring. The ink is anything but. The shading is wicked crazy. I just can’t stop looking at it when I write with it. It is even crazier after it dries. Woo-hoo! So far, it is hands down my favourite green.

I don’t know much about the company and this is the only ink I have from them. Haven’t heard (or remembered) any other inks in their line. Brad Dowdy writes “this colour has almost a cult following and after using it, I can see why…it is truly a unique colour”. Azizah also noted that it is one of her favourite inks. This crowd has some esteemed members.

The closest match for me is De Atramentis Sahara Grey but Alt Goldgrün is darker and easier to read and takes first place for sure.