Advertising propaganda notwithstanding, the fountain pen inks sold today are basically the same as those sold 75 or more years ago. The trade names Quink (Parker) and Skrip (Sheaffer) of the two most popular inks on the market. It is also assumed that it is started at 1920s. At 1992, $2.8 billion in production among 450 U.S. ink producing firms was traced.
Japanese calligraphy, from Prince Shotoku's commentary on Lotus
About 45-50 centuries ago, utilization of liquid inks with reed and brushes started in china and Egypt. Chinese improved this process by introducing solid ink in the form of sticks or cakes about 1700 years ago. The Chinese again developed block printing with heavier, more gelatinous inks, predating Gutenberg's movable type in later 11th century CE.
What is fountain pen inks made of?
Generally, water is used in formation of fountain pen ink but contain various categories of additives. Dyes for color are often derived by aniline salts and vegetable dye formulas. In order to control the viscosity of the ink, neutral thickening agent like Ethylene glycol, glycerin etc are used. Phenols or other mild fungicides are also mixed to keep mold from growing in the ink. Some inks will naturally have a peculiar ammoniac or camphoric smell in the bottle. Whereas, some manufacturers add perfumes to "tart up" their inks.
What do "washable" and "permanent" mean?
Washable inks refer to those inks that can be effortlessly cleaned from clothes. Whereas, "Permanent" inks, usually blacks and blue-blacks, are so-called because they were originated not to become paler with persistent exposure to light.
What kind of ink should I use in my fountain pen?
It's better to prefer the ink manufactured by reputed companies. You can be confident in buying ink of caveats: Pelikan. You should notice their trade name because some ink may be designed for painting, hence might not support your fountain pen. The trade name 4001 (or Fount India) is original brand and best to use in your fountain pen.
Where can I find inks?
It might be difficult in finding out bottled ink of good quality because of its very grown up popularity. But if you're lucky, you can find it at few fine-pen shop and art supply store. If not then here's some address that surely helps you to solve your problem.
Vintage EVERSHARP Fountain Pen Empty Case No nib or ink sac
$55.99 (8 Bids)
Time Remaining: 10h 35m
Diamine 30 ml Bottle Fountain Pen Ink Set Famous Composers 10
Time Remaining: 16d 22h
Buy It Now for only: $99.97
MONTEVERDE NAPA IVORY FOUNTAIN PEN IN ORIGINAL BOX INK REFILLS INSTRUCTIONS
Time Remaining: 7h 33m
Buy It Now for only: $79.95
Do I have to use the same brand of ink as the pen?
Almost every pen makers recommended users to use the same brand of inks as of the pen. However, there's no any technical reason for that counsel. While, some maker may standardize their penís feed to perform better with a certain viscosity of ink but this is a rather rough calibration. Many pen makers claim to cancel your warranty if you used another brand of ink then prescribed. Therefore, they gain the fine justification to reject a warranty claim if you used other brand of ink.
How do I get ink off my hands and my clothes?
Only by washing your hand a day or two, will of course remove the ink itself from your hand. Hence, if you want it faster then using shampoo can provide you good result. Some products like Ink-Nix perform the best relating solving this problem.
Using the product like Amodex, often remove ink stains from your clothes. Saturating the stained area with hair spray or club soda also result same effect.