Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Noodler's inks from the New England Pen Show

As promised to many friends on The Fountain Pen Network (FPN), here are photos of all the Noodler's inks I tried out at the New England Pen Show in Boston this past Sunday. Inks were all tested in the provided Platinum Preppy brush pens, already filled with the inks. All are, of course, Noodler's inks.

Noodler's inks tested at Boston Pen Show 2009, part 1

PART 1 (View large for close-up)
Emperor's Purple (Kung te-cheng)
La Reine Mauve
Concord Bream
Borealis Black
Mandalay Maroon (V-Mail series)

Noodler's inks tested at Boston Pen Show 2009, part 2

PART 2 (View large for close-up)
Baystate Blue
Dark Matter
Midway Blue
North African Violet (V-Mail series)
Luxury Blue

Noodler's inks tested at Boston Pen Show 2009, part 3

PART 3 (View large for close-up)
All of these are from the V-Mail series:
GI Green
Midway Blue
Operation Overland Orange
Rabaoul Red
Midway Blue (I tested this one a lot, and ended up buying it. More photos of this ink in a pen coming shortly.)

Check out the cool orange tint on the edges of GI Green! That color is way too light for me, but the green-to-orange effect is pretty groovy. If you like it as much as I do, check out this ink review on the Fountain Pen Network. It REALLY shows off this ink.

The whole New England Pen show was a blast, but the Noodler's table was among the most giddy kind of fun. I really appreciate the savvy FPN members who gave me the excellent advice of bringing my own ink journal and getting samples of as many Noodler's inks as I could in there. I didn't try a lot of colors just because I'm not inclined to like them. I did try to get all the V-Mail series, just for fun, even though I'm not likely to buy an orange ink.

For my blog readers who are only into the letter part and this fountain pen and ink talk is making your eyes glaze over, sorry about that. But I gotta geek out here, because fountain pens and fountain pen inks are among my favorite parts of letter-writing.

Before I close, a little more on this special brand-new V-mail series of ink.

I spoke with Nathan Tardif, the maker of Noodler's ink, about these brand-new inks. First he was talking with someone else about them, so I listened in. Then I joked, "have you tested V-mail ink on a V-mail?" And he then said no, the inks were only 48 hours old, and showed me his printed sheet of info.

Apparently the V-mail series are prototypes, produced as a test batch for the NE Pen Show. He may start making more based on how folks react to these.

I believe he called them "vintage-style" inks, and said they are made from the same reverse-engineered dyes that he obtained for Boston Brahmin Black (the NE Pen show limited edition ink, that folks who attended the show got for free. I posted photos of the snazzy bottle in my blog post yesterday). He explained something I don't quite understand, having to do with mimicking vintage inks made by a pen company in the midwest (ummm.... Iowa? Ohio? I can't remember and I'm sure someone will dress me down because it's obvious who they're mimicking but I have no idea) that he can't name by name because they still exist.

ANYWAY. These new inks are "water-resistant," Nathan says, although they smeared when I smudged with saliva (my non-scientific test).

I bought Midway Blue, which is a very bright, very saturated light blue - a color almost like turquoise, that I never would have thought I'd like, except I saw it in person and loved it. Like I said, more photos of this ink actually in a pen (where, in my humble opinion, it looks much better than in a brush/highlighter pen) coming soon.

Other colors were GI Green (looked surprisingly light and minty to me), Operation Overland Orange, Rabaoul Red, Mandalay Maroon, North African Violet. There was a brown I didn't even try so I didn't write down the name.

The fact that a brand-new series of Noodler's ink would be making its debut at the NE Pen show was a total surprise!