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Ink Review #1: Pelikan 4001 Dark Green

Pelikan 4001 Dark Green - Ink Review

Hi and welcome to another ink review at Pennonia! Before we delve into it I just want to talk a little bit about the review process. On upcoming reviews I won’t post this info but I want take a little time and talk about how I’m doing the reviews and what I came up with. ๐Ÿ™‚

Okay so I only did two “proper” reviews on the site but as part of the 2019 refocus of Pennonia I decided to take things more seriously and come up with my own standardized process because I’m sure everyone values consistency and it’s basically needed to somewhat compare inks between themselves. So actually this first post will feature the “prototype” page I have created and the actual standard post will come after the next review (although only the presentation is slightly different).

Here’s how I’m going to do my ink reviews and what elements it includes:

1. Brief presentation and personal opinion about the ink
2. Scanned writing sample + water test scan
3. Ink swatch and similar inks (naturally only those which I own)
4. Optional: Some product/studio shots if I have the time to set up the lights, camera etc.

My monitors are color calibrated so I’ll try to match the inks as closely to what I can see in real life, but it’s really hard to get them to look like as they do and not to mention that everyone’s monitor displays color slightly differently.

The scanned writing sample includes the following information:

1. Paper: For my paper I chose Rhodia 80g/m2 (DOTPAD No 16) because I think it’s a fairly accessible paper and it seems highly regarded in the eyes of most people. I’m sure it won’t satisfy everybody’s needs but I don’t want to complicate things for myself by using different brands as there are simply way too many of them.

2. Writing test: This will be done using capital and cursive handwriting. I think both are necessary because capital letters show shading more easily due to the fact you have to raise the nib a lot more than using cursive (where you can write down whole words without lifting the pen). I chose to write down one of my favorite childhood ballads: “Toldi” by Jรกnos Arany. Each review will feature one stanza. I will choose a random pen from my collection to write it and I won’t do different nib sizes.

3. Very rudimentary doodles: Literally a square drawn with lines and a square drawn with circles/loops.

4. Ink swab: Ink swabs are an integral part of most reviews and I wanted to include them in mine as well. Over at the Pen Addict slack user @Inkantadora suggested that I should turn the pen over and just drag the nib across the page instead of using a cotton swab and I have to say it’s a great idea because it’s super fast, doesn’t waste ink, no risk of contaminating your bottle and personally I think it spreads the ink more thinly so it’s not that unrealistically saturated.

5. Star rating system: Okay so the star rating system goes from 1 to 5, I don’t think I need to explain how numbered ratings work. Categories include flow, lubrication (yeah I know it can be considered the same as flow but to me lubrication means smoothness when writing, while flow refers to how much ink goes onto the paper), shade, sheen and water resistance. The only thing I want to talk about here is water resistance and how I’m doing my test. I write one line on a mini Rhodia Dotpad No 12, tear out the paper, put it into the sink and pour on it one mug of water (300 ml, simulates a spill on your desk)

Okay! So now that this is out of the way here’s the actual review

1. Introduction and personal thoughts

Pelikan doesn’t really need introduction since they are one of the most popular brands in the stationary world. The reason I chose the 4001 Dark Green is because I honestly have never seen it mentioned or talked about in discussions. Everybody is preoccupied with the latest and greatest inks on the market yet here we have an affordable and quite good ink on our hands and nobody ever recommends it. I actually have a lot of writing time with this ink because I’m using it at work at the moment (with an emerald Leuchtturm1917 and green PenBBS 350 – you gotta color match your stationary) so my impression of it is not just based on the two pages I wrote with it on the review page.

The ink comes in the standard Pelikan glass bottle so nothing fancy here, but I personally favor glass over plastic even though it’s not as convenient. The color of the ink leans towards the bluer spectrum and is true to it’s name as it is indeed dark green. Since the ink shades you’ll be able to see that if the ink pools at the end of the strokes it can look almost black but the green is always visible at the beginning of them. I’m personally neutral when it comes to the color of the ink, I neither dislike or like it. On the other hand writing with this ink is so good! I find the flow and lubrication to be really nice and writing with it is really satisfying. It doesn’t skip and is very consistent. At this point I’m ready to only use this ink in the Leuchtturm1917 notebook until I finish it. The good thing is that it’s also really cheap so anyone can try this ink out without breaking the bank.

2. Writing samples

Pelikan 4001 Dark Green - Writing sample 001
Pelikan 4001 Dark Green – Writing sample 001


Pelikan 4001 Dark Green - Writing sample 002
Pelikan 4001 Dark Green – Writing sample 002
Pelikan 4001 Dark Green - Water Test
Pelikan 4001 Dark Green – Water Test

3. Similar Inks:

4. Extra photos / scans:

Inktober – 2018 – Pelikan 4001 Dark Green

Thanks for checking out the review! I hope it was helpful and informative! Check back again to catch up on new reviews or hang around in the Pen Addict Slack where I’ll post whenever I make a new one. See you until next time!

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