Yet Another Ink Test for Waterproof-ness – Nine Inks in a Soak Test

Submitted by LPC member Rick and also posted on FPN

Once again it is time for another test to see how your favourite ink holds up to a soaking in water. I’ve done a couple of these in the past and it is long past time I made another.

More than a year ago I wrote out on a page of Rhodia lined paper a sample of nine inks that were in my pens at the time – Noodler’s Heart of Darkness, FPN Van Gogh Starry Night Blue, Diamine Blue Black, Parker Penman Sapphire, Parker Quink Washable Blue from a vintage (c 1950s) bottle in my collection, Noodler’s Zhivago, Private Reserve Avacado, Private Reserve Black Cherry and Noodler’s Baystate Blue. As it has been over a year I have no idea what ink was in what pen or what nib size, please don’t ask.

This morning while cleaning off my desk I found that page (better late than never) and scanned it using my Epson Stylus CX4800. For what it’s worth the colours look accurate on my monitor.

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Then I cut the page in half

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And submerged it in a laundry tub of warm tap water and let it soak for five minutes. I didn’t agitate the page in the tub or run water from the tap over the page.

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After five minutes under water I removed the page and carefully hung it to dry

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Before taping it back together and once again scanning the page. Again the colours here look accurate on my monitor.

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So what have I learned? Once again, as expected, Noodler’s held out the best to my little test.

The HOD looks unchanged, the Baystate Blue looks almost as good, Zhivago lost it’s green tint leaving behind black. The FPN Starry Night Blue (by Noodler’s, but not marketed as waterproof / bulletproof) changed colour to a greyish black but is perfectly readable.

The Penman Sapphire fared the worse this time, it is all but gone, a few more minutes in the water and it may have disappeared altogether.

The vintage Quink Washable Blue is still legible as is the PR Black Cherry.

The PR Avacado surprised me by changing colour from a dark green before the test to a red after soaking, faded but still legible. Red? Maybe need to do some paper towel chromatography on the Avacado to see the colours that are in this ink. But that’s for another day.

Hope you find this little test useful.