Birmingham Pen Gray Inks

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Today as an end to this week’s grey ink theme, I decided to take a look at 6 of Birmingham’s darker inks. All six of these inks look grey in writing, but have different undertones that can be seen in larger swabs: Slag Gray, Riddle Green, Independence Gray, Oxidized Brass, Blues for Sale, and Smoked Iron.

Swabs:

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Left to right: Slag Gray, Riddle Green, Independence Gray, Oxidized Brass, Blues for Sale, and Smoked Iron.

Writing samples:

Let's take a look at how the ink behaves on fountain pen friendly papers: Rhodia, Tomoe River, and Leuchtturm.

Water resistance: Low

Feathering: Medium-all of them feathered on Rhodia and Leuchtturm.

Show through: Medium

Bleeding: Medium-high all inks bled on Rhodia and Leuchtturm.

Other properties: low shadingno sheen, and no shimmer.

On Staples 24 lb copy paper there was lots of feathering in every nib size as well as a lot of bleeding, so I would not recommend these inks for cheap paper.

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Dry time:

ranges from 20-40 seconds.

Comparison Swabs:

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Slag Gray is similar to Birmingham Tarnished Nickel. Riddle Green is similar to Sailor Ink Studio 723. Independence Gray is close to Organics Studio Arsenic Gray. Oxidized Brass is similar to 3 Oysters Cool Gray. Blues for Sale reminds me of Birmingham Aluminum Oxide. Smoked Iron is darker than Diamine Grey. Click here to see the Birmingham inks together.

I used a Bond Travel Gear A5 notebook (Tomoe River 68gsm). Top to bottom, I used: Pelikan M400 White Tortoise-medium nib, Lamy 2000-fine nib, Pelikan M805 Stresemann-medium nib, Montegrappa Copper Mule-fine nib, Pilot Vanishing Point Galaxy-medium nib, and Pilot Vanishing Point Copper-broad nib. All of the inks had a slightly watery flow, a bit wetter than average.

I used a Bond Travel Gear A5 notebook (Tomoe River 68gsm). Top to bottom, I used: Pelikan M400 White Tortoise-medium nib, Lamy 2000-fine nib, Pelikan M805 Stresemann-medium nib, Montegrappa Copper Mule-fine nib, Pilot Vanishing Point Galaxy-medium nib, and Pilot Vanishing Point Copper-broad nib. All of the inks had a slightly watery flow, a bit wetter than average.

Overall, in writing most of these inks are very similar. I don’t actually love any of these, there’s too much feathering and bleeding for my everyday use, so I’m glad I only had samples of these inks.

Disclaimer: I purchased this ink myself, and all photos and opinions are my own. This page does not contain affiliate links, and is not sponsored in any way.