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J. Herbin 1670 Bleu Ocean -- Nibs & Nails!


It's another Nibs and Nails ink review! Hooray! So, go over to Right on the Nail to see the nail polish that was inspired by this neat blue ink.

The 1670 line of inks has been the perennial favorite in the fountain pen community. Each new ink has been met with much expectation. This one was a bit of an outlier. I think it was the second in the series (just after Rouge Hematite), and it wasn't an immediate hit. It didn't have as much shimmer in it, and it doesn't have a sheen to it. I know this is the second version of the ink (they did a re-formulation on it), and I know I like it. I think they added some more shimmer to the ink, but I'm not sure what else was changed. Anyway, I really like the base-color in this one. It's a really great blue. I'm probably not even going to shake the bottle next time I fill a pen from it.

Check it out below, check out the nail polish version, and let us know what you think.

Written Review

Close Ups

Copy Paper Test

There's a lot of bleed through on the copy paper from the broad nib, but much less from the medium. You're not super-likely to use this one on bad paper, anyway, so I don't think it's an issue.


Tomoe River

Not all that much glitter in the Tomoe River samples for some reason. It's there, but you really have to look for it.

Bright Sunlight

I didn't want to use too many of these pictures, but sunlight sometimes really brings out the flash in these inks. I think it did less for this ink than some others. Probably because it lacks the sheen of some other 1670 inks.


Some of the shimmer traveled on this one. That's fairly rare.

Water Drop Test & Video Review

TiScribe-HL on Kickstarter now!


And now for something totally different!

This is the first highlighter that I've reviewed on this blog, and it's the first machined highlighter that I've seen or used. I don't know what the market is for this, but it seems to be present because the kickstarter is really funded right now.

Okay, so a little bit about the project!

You might remember the previous project from Kelvin, the TiScribe fountain pen. It was a small pocket pen made from titanium, brass, or copper and it was pretty good. It was a little small for me, and it didn't post, but the work was a good proof of concept, and I hear the larger version was very popular on Kickstarter.

Well, Kelvin has taken the size of the larger version, added options like clips or (really powerful) magnets to the cap, made it post, and made it into a highlighter. It's a cool idea, and the finished product is solid.

In the pictures above and below you can see what this thing looks like. It's got o-rings at top and bottom and a few in-between.  Mine has a neodymium magnet in the cap, and it's got the power to hold the entire pen perpendicular to the metal surface that you've got it stuck to. I didn't think it was going to work with this heavy copper body, but it totally does. I hear that the production version of the pen will actually have an even larger magnet. That'll certainly do the job.

 The threads at the end are not where you're going to put your fingers, so no worries about sharp threads.

 Internals and parts:

 An o-ring keeps the refill snug in the barrel, and keeps the metal parts separated and tight. There are no rattles in this pen.

It posts! Hooray!


Copper pens are always going to be heavy. If you want a lighter one, go for the Ti option. I think that we need to judge a copper highlighter a little differently, though. You're not writing with this for pages. You're highlighting a few words and moving on. Thus, I don't think that weight is much to worry about. 

The Montblanc highlighter refill is bright and it seems to work really well on printed things. The catch is that performance is going to depend on the printer you have, the ink, and the paper you're using. Expect the same issues you'd have with any other highlighter. This one is replaceable, though, so that's cool. 

Okay, so if you like what you're seeing, you can go check it out at Kickstarter for the next couple of weeks. 

Let me know in the comments if there's room for a machined highlighter in your daily carry or desk usage. This thing is tough as nails, and very well designed, so it could be filling that void for you.

Here's the Video Review:

Cross Violet

Ink sample provided by Anderson Pens.

 Check out this purple!

As soon as I swatched this one, I knew it was going to be the stand-out of the bunch.  (The Cross Blue-Black is really cool, though. Check it out.) This is a color that is hard to capture in words, as there are so many different variants of purple. This one is a dark violet. Not as dark as Dark Lilac, but perhaps neighbors. I really like this color.

Take a look at the pics below, and give the video a watch. Let me know what you think.

Written Review

Close Ups!

Weird that the swatch bled through the Rhodia a little bit. It doesn't bleed through copy paper, but this was kind of a lot of ink. Also, it dried really quickly. I usually film the swatching at regular speed, stop it, and start a new video as a time-lapse to catch the drying phase for Instagram. This ink actually dried so fast that I didn't have time to catch that second video. Pretty awesome drying time on Rhodia!

Copy Paper Test


Color Comparisons

Video Review and Water Drop Test

**This ink sample was provided by Anderson Pens in exchange for my honest review. The review is mine alone, and all YMMV. **

New Sailor Inks on the Horizon!

So many awesome new inks!

I got these samples from Brian and Lisa this weekend, and I couldn't be more excited. We lost a bunch of cool inks when Sailor released the last set, but these are just an addition to the line. Hooray! Check out the images below, and let me know which ones are on your must-have list.