Product review: Daytone Extra Fine Inks for Fountain Pens

I recently paid a visit to Daytone industries, Indore. I wanted to visit the manufacturing facility. However, the owner informed me that he wasn’t available for a walkthrough. So, we reserved it for a later date. However, I could not stop myself from buying their assorted collection of the ‘Extra Fine’ inks for fountain pens. Since I had reserved myself a visit, I also got a nice discount from them.

Even for the asking price of roughly 900 INR, a pack of fifteen colors of inks is a deal. However, you can get yourself the inks at much lesser prices on websites like Amazon and Flipkart.

The owner informed me that he was happy to see a steady increase in demand. And, within the last 5-10 years, he has seen a trend shifting in favor of using and soliciting the use of ink (or fountain) pens.

Here, in this post, I have sampled all fifteen inks for you. Some I really liked. Some I reserved for later use.

Most of the colors are matt finish and do not shade or sheen. However, some shading naturally occurs because of a single or double pass of ink.

I especially like that, at the price point those inks are sold, you can play around with different colors. I am using Chocolate, for instance in my Pilot Custom 823. It is a relatively cheap ink for a pricey pen—a rather unlikely combination. However, in the little time I used the combination, I changed the ink. So, I didn’t, purposely, let the ink dry within the pen. I’m really not sure how will the ink behave if the pen is left unused for a long time. But I’d prefer experimenting by using a pocket-friendly pen.

In daily use, I have found the inks to be pen friendly. The inks may not always be paper friendly, insomuch as they will require a fountain pen-friendly paper. You can view more writing samples on my Instagram feed:

  • Kanwrite Heritage inked with Cerulean Blue here
  • Pilot Custom 823 in Amber inked with Sapphire Blue here.

Let me know how you find this review.


Product Review: Pelikan 4001 Blau-Schwarz (Blue-Black) Ink

Sometimes, to beat the rather mundane blue and black ink colors of your fountain pen, the easiest escape is in using a combination of the two colors. And when the ink has iron-gall-like properties, it is all the more enough to amuse yourself with.

Shade and swab

The ink has a good, rich color and shades beautifully as you write through pages. It has the right combination of the extremes of blue-black. So, it goes from the liveliest of midnight blues to the smoothest shades of blue-grey.

This is a shading ink and not a sheening one. So, despite how much amount of ink I poured on the paper, I could not find any signs of either purple or blue.

Also, I find this to be correctly leaning toward the blue-grey side. There are a few blue-blacks that I find to be bluer (and sometimes, more blue-green-black) than just blue-black.

Even on the normal notebook and photocopy paper, I don’t see any signs of feathering or bleedthrough when writing. For reference, note that I am using a Broad nib for the writing sample.

Drying time and water resistance

The ink takes anywhere between 20-35 seconds to dry depending on your paper choice. On an everyday, photocopy paper, it took 15 seconds. But on a more fountain-pen-friendly paper, it took 30-ish seconds to dry.

Even though it is a bit on the drier side, I am a bit shocked (pleasantly, that is) to see that it still takes that much time to dry. The sample was left to dry for at least one full day before testing.

It is fairly water-resistant, which means it is relatively safe to use for your office work. I would not call it waterproof, but it has much better water resistance than some of the inks I have used in the past.

The ink might look darker in the photographs, but it (perfectly) leans towards blue.

Observations and conclusion

I have used it in two pens in which the ink has behaved completely differently. For the ink tests, I used my Magna Carta Denima (M) and Guider Medium Ebonite (B) on regular photocopy paper. In Denima, the shading didn’t come through.

When the nib was sufficiently wet, I got a dark shade. But when the nib was starving, I got a lighter shade. While this should be normal for any ink-paper-pen combination, I found that the ink dried faster in my Denima. I never had such an issue with my Denima before; it never skipped and I never had a hard start before. But now I do.

On the flip side, my Guider Medium Ebonite is a gusher. It has a broad nib that writes like it is a Double Broad. Although I tuned the nib a bit, I still see that the nib is sufficiently wet to produce darker shades of letters as I write.

What surprises me is that even though the ink is drier, it doesn’t behave so when I use it in a pen with a broad nib. I can safely conclude that that is so because almost all German pens use one-size broader nibs when compared with Japanese pens. So, a medium nib on a German pen will behave like a Broad nib on a Japanese pen.

To make up for this, I assume, Pelikan has made its Blue-Black just a little bit drier. And, therefore, it doesn’t misbehave on my Guider Medium that dons a Broad nib. I’d like to reserve this ink for my Guider pen, but I will buy a wetter ink for my Denima. Maybe it is time for me to try another blue-black ink. This time, though, I am thinking of buying Japanese ink. I think it will be Pilor Iroshizuku Shin-Kai.

Overall experience

I bought this ink from My shopping experience was smooth. The site didn’t charge me anything for nationwide shipping. Even though the 30ml bottle was a bit overpriced, I didn’t mind paying extra, since there wasn’t any minimum order price to qualify for free shipping.

Although, I will say I am a bit disappointed with the ink. It is a lot drier than I expected. But I still love how it brought one of my smoothest writers back into my pocket. What’s more? The ink made me learn an invaluable lesson: use German inks for pens with Broad or Double Broad nibs. 🙂

I will be curious to know your experience with the Pelikan inks, especially the 4001 series, Blau-Schwarz ink.
Happy writing.