Thursday, March 18, 2010

Conway Stewart: Benign Neglect

It suddenly occurred to me this morning that for reasons I don’t understand, as far as ink goes, Conway Stewart is a neglected brand in blog pages related to pen and ink. Thinking about it now, I can’t recall reading a single ink review for a Conway Stewart ink. What could the reason be?

A quick Google search shows that the choices are severely limited for someone looking to buy Conway Stewart ink. In addition, the available colors have shrunk from few to paltry. Two or three online stores offer blue or black, but nowhere could I find the full palette of eight colors. Pendemonium has in stock seven of them, lacking only the CS Green featured in this review. This situation makes you wonder if Conway Stewart is gradually withdrawing from the market, or if the demand for their ink has fallen off. I purchased a box of four Conway Stewart inks three years ago, and I believe it was from Classic Fountain Pens in Los Angeles. Now they don’t list Conway Stewart ink on their website. The set of four inks I got included blue, black, green and CS Green.

I’ve done little more than try the blue, black and green in an abbreviated fashion, mainly because the colors are too basic, too ‘vanilla’ for my tastes. On the other hand, the 30 ml bottle of CS Green is now almost empty. This is an ocean water blue-green that is beautiful, practical and eye-catching all at once. The occasions where it would be both acceptable and admired are enough to make it a basic, daily-use shade of ink.

The brief list of CS Green qualities in the photograph here reflect good results. On what I often consider to be a difficult 100% cotton paper (Crane stationery), the CS Green in my Pelikan 425 showed no feathering or bleed through. The flow of ink, the lubrication both good. I did something to test the waterproof qualities I’d never tried before. First, I submerged a sample in a bowl of water; a good amount of the ink washed out, but words were still legible. Next, I held the paper under running water for half a minute—still legible. Results were a heck of a lot better than someone leaving the cake out in the rain. (Mmm…Am I dating myself?)

The upshot of it all…If you can find a dealer who still has CS Green ink, buy yourself a bottle.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing the blog related to the Conway Stewart 388 Oblique. Really a great blog!!

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Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America