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Pelikan 4001 Brilliant Black


This is the first ink from the regular Pelikan line (4001) that I've tried. It's a perfectly okay black. It's not making my "favorite black inks" list, but it's perfectly fine. It's a little bit dry for me, and its performance is a little spotty on copy paper. There's nothing wrong with it, but it's not blowing my doors off.

 Brilliant Black didn't work all that well in the Monteverde Impressa that I first used it in, but it works really well in my Pelikan m800, so perhaps it really needs a wet nib to work well.

Do you have any experience with this ink? What did you think of it and what pens did you use it in?

Written Review

Close Ups!

 As I said, it's not bad but it seems like it begrudges me every line of text. Not super-pleasant.

 Just a little bit of sheen on this pool, here.

Tomoe River
 A little sheen here, too, but you expect that on Tomoe River.

 If you're looking for a great black in, get Sailor Kiwa-Guro. It's rad.

Copy Paper Test

 Pretty good behavior, but not great.


Water Test and Review Video

You can find this ink at your favorite Pelikan distributor. I suggest getting a sample (Anderson Pens link), but a bottle is 2oz for $12, so it's not a big loss if you don't love it.

Post Comment
indigogarden said...

This was the first ink that I used in a fountain pen and I used it happily for my first year. It is very friendly with cheap paper and I still use it with a fine nib when writing in Moleskine notebooks. The ink works well with this paper. I agree that it is a basic black with no sheen or shading. Sometimes, that is what you want. These days I love my Take-sumi or Noodler's Black, but I still keep the Brilliant Black around. It is inexpensive and useful.

Unknown said...

I'm retired now, but when I was working I always had a pen inked with black. My favorite ink for appearance was Aurora Black, but it didn't dry fast enough and smeared as i wrote (as I am a lefty). The fastest drying ink was Waterman Black, but it wasn't dark enough for my taste. Pelikan Brilliant Black was the compromise: almost as dark as the Aurora and almost as fast-drying as the Waterman. As a consequence, it was my regular black ink for about six years.