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Ink Samples and Anderson Pens

12/13/13
If there's one question that pen/ink bloggers get more than any other, it is something like this:

What ink should I get?
If you like this color, you should get Private Reserve's American Blue
That's a good question, but it's a hard one to answer. One of the reasons that we like fountain pens so much is that your your color and ink choices are so broad. This is a double-edged sword. It means that even when you narrow it down from "I want some ink." to "I want a blue ink." you still have to find the right one (or ones) for you. If you have unlimited funds you can just buy tons of bottles of ink until you find some that really suit you. 

If you're like the rest of us, though, the best thing to do is to buy some ink samples. This was actually one of the things that helped me to get back into the fountain pen game after an absence of several years. I'd get the occasional bottle of ink, but it was always a gamble. I don't remember where I heard about it, but I discovered that I could get ink samples sent to me in the mail. EUREKA! 

These samples are from Anderson Pens.net, and they're 3ml samples. That's the same volume as isellpens.com and 50% more than you get from the Goulet's for the same price. (Sure, it's only 1ml more, but value is value.) 

It can be a little tricky to fill some pens from the sample vial if you have a pen with a fat body or a long nib, so I generally use a syringe for that. It's cleaner and you waste far less ink that way. You can get a small one with a blunt needle at a medical supply store, or you can just get one from most ink vendors and avoid feeling weird shopping for needles.

Brace yourself for a picture frenzy. 

Omas Parker J. Herbin Stipula Scribal Workshops

Omas Black Red Grey Blue Parker Quink Black

Omas
Omas Black, Red, and Grey


Omas Parker Quink
Omas Blue, Parker Quink Black, and J. Herbin Terra de Feu

J. Herbin Stipula
J. Herbin Terra de Feu and Stipula Musk Green

I didn't like Scribal when I first tried their inks, but Lisa Anderson says I need to give them another try. 

Scribal Workshop
Left: Damselfish
Right: Siren

So, if you're not sure what to try out next then order up a bunch of samples. they're generally in the $1.25 range, and they come with enough ink to let you fill up a converter a couple of times. 

These were swatched on an Anderson Pens' Proper Pad, and I think the text was written in Noodler's Texas Pecan.

****Disclaimer: I'm not affiliated with any vendors mentioned in this post. I'm just a happy customer. I paid for these. Anderson Pens didn't provide the samples for free or anything, though they did give me one more than I ordered because they thought I might like it even though I hadn't ordered it. They're good folks.****
Post Comment
Grace McCarter said...

Hmmm I didn't know about these other companies. Thanks!