I needed a waterproof blue ink to replace my dwindling reserve of Noodler’s Gulf Stream Blue which is a Swisher Pens exclusive.  Except they’re out of stock.  I used to use Noodler’s Luxury Blue until they changed the formula and it became a Luxury Teal with industrial strength surfactant.  It may just be me, but Noodler’s ink have been very variable from bottle to bottle in color and flow.  Some of the waterproof — or “bulletproof” or “eternal” — Noodler’s inks have been packed with so much wetting agent/surfactant to broaden my extra fine nib’s line into the very image of bloated psychotic caterpillars.  Not a pretty image, is it?

My quest led me to Goulet Pens where I ordered sample vials of Sailor Sei Boku, and Platinum Pigment Blue, both waterproof blue inks.  These are both “nano particle” type inks.  I have both brands version of black, and Sailor’s Kiwa Guro is a very consistent and well behaved waterproof black that has replaced Noodler’s Black.  

Sailor Sei Boku is a nice ink, but more an aqua.  Platinum Pigment Blue looks almost violet on the swabs and samples I saw on web, but to my eye looks… blue!  A very nice electric blue at that.  So I ordered Platinum Pigment Blue (and a bunch of ink vials which are just the greatest).

Since the sections of Al-Stars are identical, I put the newly inked blue ink in the Ocean Blue Al-Star and put the Kiwa Guro section in the Graphite section.  

The Ocean Blue Al-Star has a .5mm self-ground italic, and the Graphite one has a factory EF nib.  The paper here is off-white but it doesn’t distort the color of the blue ink much.  Note: I am using guidesheets (4 lines per inch) as practice for another project — I can’t normally write quite so straight or uniformly.