Ink Review: 4001 Brilliant Brown by Pelikan

This sample was received in the February 2014 Ink Drop entitled Box of Chocolates. I hadn't been exposed to brown inks before this and I ended up purchasing two of the inks featured that month. The colour of this particular brown checked a lot of the right boxes and I still enjoy using it today.

Where To Buy (No Affiliate Links)

JetPens Goulet Pens Stylus Fine Pens Cult Pens
Price / 62.5 ml Bottle $10 US $13 US $14 CAN £7.15
Price / ml $0.16 US $0.21 US $0.22 CAN £0.11
Writing Sample on Rhodia 80 gsm

Writing Sample on Rhodia 80 gsm

Writing Sample on 20lb copy paper

Writing Sample on 20lb copy paper

Back of 20lb copy paper

Back of 20lb copy paper

Writing Sample on Field Notes - Front and Back shown

Writing Sample on Field Notes - Front and Back shown

Ink Properties

Shading: Subtle shading, there are a lot of browns that do a better job of this but it is still a feature worth selecting the ink for.
Bleed Through: Field Notes shows a lot of bleed through as well as feathering. Copy paper does much better but still experiences some minor bleed through with wet nibs. 
Show Through: Absorbent papers will exhibit show through.
Saturation: Average saturation.
Sheen: None.
Water Resistance: All traces of brown are totally obliterated but there is a blue grey component that is permanent. 
Drying Time: Fairly quick drying time, 15 seconds using an EF nib on Rhodia.
Flow: Good flow.
Cleaning: Easy.

Colour Make Up

Chromatography Sample

Chromatography Sample

As can be seen above, this ink is made up of orange, peach, and blue-grey. This blue-grey shows up as having some permenancy in the water drop test on Rhodia.

Similar Inks (Images Courtesy of Goulet Pens)

Conclusions

I'm a bit fickle when it comes to brown inks, some are too red, others too grey, this one is just right. When used with ink resistant papers such as Clairefontaine Triomphe or Tomoe River, it exhibits nice subtle shading and behaves itself quite well. When you move to more absorbent papers though, the colour becomes matte and drab and the ink spreads, bleeds through, and feathers. I ended up purchasing a 30 ml bottle from JetPens and use it occasionally but I am more likely to reach for a brown that has better shading properties like Noodler's Golden Brown or my current heart throb, Diamine Ochre.

Other Reviews For This Ink

Tyler Dahl
The Fountain Pen Physicist