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Thread: Ink Review: Reform Green

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    Junior Member ToasterPastry's Avatar
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    Default Ink Review: Reform Green

    Ink Review: Reform Green (A new old stock ink)



    Introduction: I came across several bottles of Reform black and colored inks through eBay about one year ago. A seller from Montreal had discovered several lots of this new old stock ink in a warehouse, and had begun selling off the bottles one by one. I acquired several bottles of black ink from him. Realizing my tendency for hoarding, I sold off several bottles of the black ink but kept one for personal use. The colored inks have remained stored in a lightfast container, unused, hoarded like the rest of my collection. Many of the old bottles will be nothing more than powder on the bottom of a jar. On certain days, when I have the free time, I reconstitute the powder, and fill a pen. That is how I discovered Carter’s Washable Blue. However, I have accumulated so many jars of old ink, that many of them go unused. One day, after corresponding with another ink hoarder (read: collector), I decided to pull out a bottle of Green reform ink. This is brand new, old stock ink, dating back to the 1990s. Unfortunately, I’m not the best historian with regards to Reform ink. But here is my assumption based on known information.

    The Reform company, as known as the Mutschler Fountain Pen Works, was not an ink manufacturer. This German company of Philip Mutschler and his sons, Otto and Peter, then later Sanford and Ullrich, manufactured complete pens under the Reform name, and then pen parts for other companies. Their last known pens were produced in Heidelberg in the early 1990s, before the company finally declared bankruptcy in 2003. Their tool and stamping machines were sold to Chinese companies, who currently produce pens with nibs that still say “Iridium Point Germany.”

    Based on his sample of black ink, Len, my Beligian friend, assumed that Reform ink was actually produced by Pelikan. When I started swabbing out swatches of red ink, I came to the same conclusion: Pelikan Brilliant Red and Reform Red were one and the same. When I compared, Reform Green with Pelikan Brilliant Green, again, they were the same ink.

    Therefore, Reform ink was probably produced according to the same formula, and in the same factory, as Pelikan ink. I assume that this ink was produced in the early 1990s. It is no longer bottled under the Reform name.



    Color: The color is a bright emerald green, with a hint of blue almost like the color of Kentucky Bluegrass. While I initially felt that color was a bit too bright for my tastes, I found that I enjoyed writing with this ink, and liked how it looked on the paper. It is distinctive, yet not an ink color that attracts attention to itself. The color compares very similarly to Pelikan Brilliant Green, as shown in the scan Michael Richter. My scan of Pelikan Brilliant Green is from a sample obtained from a 1940s vintage wedge-bottle design from German industrial designer Wilhelm Wagenfeld.



    Size: 32 ml bottle (1.1 fluid ounces).

    Characteristics: Water based.

    Pen: Writing samples were produced with a Japanese Well fountain pen with gold fine-flexible nib, as well as a Sheaffer flat top with gold firm nib.

    Lubricity: Adequate. The pen glides across the paper.

    Permanence: Waterproof? It’s not. Just a drop of water applied weeks after application practically melted William Blake right off the page. However, some green ink still remains. Bad news for those who enjoy writing in the rain.

    Drying time: 5 to 10 seconds.



    Flow: Excellent flow. Very little nib-creep. Does not dry or clog pens.

    Shading: The ink is relatively saturated, but there is still some small amount of shading.

    Bleedthough: On a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the worst, I would rate this as a 1 to 2. It may bleed through some papers. Though, in general, I have seen modern inks bleed more heavily, and vintage iron gallic inks barely bleed at all.

    Feathering: 1/5. It does feather on cheaper writing papers. But overall, it’s very little.

    Mixibility: Sure, why not. I accidentally had some blue ink leftover in a fountain pen, and it provided a nice color-shading to the green ink that I added (not seen in the samples enclosed).

    A few comments on the color sample figure. All of these samples were made from my green inks in my collection. I used a cotton swab and performed a swatch of color, followed by a second application to the first half, allowing it to shade. The paper was photographed in the afternoon sun.



    Conclusion:
    A very nice, well-behaved ink. The color is a bit bright for business purposes, but it doesn’t offend the eye or attract attention to itself. I work in an industry that forces individuals to write in either blue or black ink. But I’m a bit of a rebel. I feel, that as long others can read my writing, and the ink doesn’t disappear under xerography, then why does it matter. Reform Green is part of a set of colored inks that was produced for the Mutschler Fountain Pen Works in the 1990s, and branded under the Reform name. It appears very similarly to, and probably made by, Pelikan, and rebranded under the Reform name.
    Last edited by ToasterPastry; June 10th, 2010 at 07:15 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Okami's Avatar
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    see, now you're just teasing me with pretty greens that I don't know where to buy - off to eBay to search
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    The Nibsmith dannzeman's Avatar
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    Fantastic review! I really enjoy reading about the company's history and I love that you included other greens to compare it to! Bravo!

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    Member liapuyat's Avatar
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    The shape of the bottle is pretty, and that's a nice medium green with a tinge of blue. I totally understand about the hoarding

  5. #5
    Junior Member lovemy51's Avatar
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    hello TP! nice review. i like your hand-writing!

    i got to many green inks now... about 4 and i don't need that many, but i tell ya'... i like the look of the bottle!!
    lovemy51

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