Ink Review #850: Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-kai


Most of the time I just review whatever inks are next on my list, but sometimes I like to do a theme for the week. This week’s theme is blue-black inks. Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-kai, aka “Deep Sea” is an ink I use often, and I was surprised when I realized I’ve never actually reviewed it. A pen friend was very kind and gave me my bottle, but you can find this ink for sale at Pen Chalet.


The color:

Shin-kai is a medium blue-black.



In large swabs on Tomoe River paper the ink looks more blue with some red sheen.


Writing samples:

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

Dry time: 15 seconds

Water resistance: Medium-some of the ink washed away but you might still be able to read what was written.

Feathering: Low-there was a little bit of feathering in the flex nib on Leuchtturm paper.

Show through: Medium

Bleeding: Low-there was some bleeding in the flex nib.

Other properties: medium shading, low sheen, and no shimmer. The sheen is only visible in large nibs on Tomoe River paper.

On Staples 24 lb copy paper the ink feathered in all nib sizes and had a little bit of bleeding.

Comparison Swabs:


Shin-kai is similar to Lamy Blue-Black, but I do prefer Shin-kai. Click here to see the Pilot inks together, and click here to see the blue-black inks together.

Longer Writing:


I used a Lamy AL-star Pacific Blue with a fine nib on Tomoe River paper. The ink had a lovely wet flow.

Overall, I love this ink, and use it often. I love the color, shading, wet flow, and quick dry time. Since I only have the small 15 ml bottle, I’ll buy a full-size bottle when it’s gone.

Disclaimer: This ink was given to me by a pen friend. All photos and opinions are my own. This page does contain affiliate links, but this post is not sponsored in any way.