I picked up this bottle of Stephens Fixed Blue ink for a song considering the price of ink these days. It’s about half full. The seller packed it well but there was a tiny bit of leakage by time it got to me. Really just an insignificant amount – until it got on my fingers, where it became truly significant. It is, indeed, fixed! With much washing I was able to reduce it, not remove it!
It’s strange ink. First applied it looks decidedly purple. Also, it seemed rather weak, as if it had lost its intensity. When I looked again I did a double take. It had become fully blue and it stood out well on the paper despite having been applied with a very fine nib. I’m very pleased with it but I can’t put a date to it. “Old”. That’s near enough!
12 thoughts on “Stephens Fixed Blue”
Interesting Ink…Does fixed ink mean a kind of indeleble or premanent type of ink ??
Yes, I think it’s permanent. Someone suggested to me that as it “develops” it may be an iron gall formulation.
Fond memories of watering down the Stephen’s ink before it was put in the ink wells at junior school
I take it that was from powder? My husband remembers that too.
I really can’t remember! It was 60 years ago and not a major event. In the last year we used ink and dip pens instead of pencils to prepare for senior school.
The major event was that we produced a piece of writing and an ‘expert’ at Osmiroid matched it to the ‘ideal’ nib for us and we bought a 75 for £1.1.0 (might have been more, but it was well over a pound) to use at senior school.
I got one with a medium nib which was horrible and, despite the cost, was soon lost. I then went through senior school with a series of Platignum lever fills with italic nib mostly like this pen shttps://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Platignum-Blue-Body-and-Lever-Fill-System-Fountain-Pen/264747927573?hash=item3da434c815:g:WpEAAOSwRh9e0la~
They only cost 2/6
My husband’s school fountain pen use was very similar to yours. He had several Platignums. He lost the ones that didn’t break!
I have one with a cracked cap and a pen missing its cap, but I don’t know where! They surface periodically but don’t form part of my collection
I believe Stephens ink formula was taken over and is now produced by Ecclesiastical Stationary Supplies; ESSRI has been my everyday ink for many years. It is indeed permanent and the devil to remove when spilt. I love it.
Is that so? I was aware of ESSRI of course but I didn’t know it was the successor to Stephens. I read several reviews of this ink. Some say that it is dry and others that it clogs their pens. Despite that I understand it has a strong following. I don’t have much call for a permanent ink as my deathless prose probably isn’t deathless. I already have a blue black that I love, the Diamine variety.
here Vic Stevenson wrote about his ESSRI:
ESSRI is a dream in most Swans, great especially from fine to eef, my most used ink.
It is dry, but not very dry like Diamine’s Registrar’s.
Is the nib very wet DRI works better…
Thank you, Jens. I did come across that excellent post when I was searching for references to the ink I have. Mine is not Radiant Blue, however. ESSRI is very popular and I will try it sometime, when I have reduced the amount of ink I have – a small lake at the moment.