A legacy of using it too much at school in my teens, I generally find blue-black inks rather boring, but not all. The name Cosmico brings to mind night skies full of stars. Unsurprisingly this ink could be considered a match for the Feel A Riveder Le Stelle, which represented exactly that.
From the swab test I could see sheen so I knew in advance this would be a thicker ink, and potentially one that would be slow to dry (or so I thought). In some respects the colour comes across more as a dark indigo ink rather than blue-black.
As soon as I looked at the writing I could see little variation in a strong colour as well as some hints of sheen. The first pass of the cotton bud actually put down more ink than I was expecting. Sheening inks tend to be more viscous. The second pass almost makes the ink look like a dark purple and where I started that swipe, there must have been an excess of ink as you can see a red sheen. The third pass adds more depth and the hints of bronze, while the 4th pass just results in sheen.
All of the pens worked well on the Midori MD paper, though the two broad nibs did need priming. The only real shading that can be seen is from the OMAS nib, but only the first four lines, not the latter two. This is because I did not realise I would need to leave the pen for a few minutes after dipping the nib for that to help draw the ink through from the converter. Net result the pen suddenly ran dry. Having fixed things and done the test below on the Oxford Optik paper I returned to the Midori MD and wrote two additional lines, at which point the letters were more saturated with ink. Even the lighter ink from the Pelikano only shows a little shading. I am also not sure why that wrote a little dryer here considering it is normally a wet nib, especially as the flow was strong with the other pens.
All four pens worked well with the Oxford Optik paper, though if you are after shading then you need to look closely. The ink blot at the bottom was done to show the sheen that Blu Cosmico can produce.
Shading and Sheen
This is quite a saturated ink with the result that while there is some shading it is not obvious unless you look closely at your writing. Net result this is a very business like ink.
As with most other blue sheening inks, here a metallic red can be seen on suitable paper where the ink has pooled.
Flow and Consistency
Unsurprising for a sheening ink, this one has a comparatively high level of viscosity with the result it not only stays at the end of the converter when inverted, but once the ink has dropped to the bottom there is still a reasonable amount of blue left stuck to the side of the converter. I suspect this ink could be a troublesome one to clean once it has been in a pen for a while.
What is quite surprising is the ink’s ability to flow. Despite being a sheener and also drying quickly, all four pens never struggled to put the ink down.
When writing you see nice moist letters and so it is a surprise that this ink does dry very quickly unless pooled.
While I only have a sample vial of this ink you can see from the above picture that it normally comes in a four sided glass bottle which holds 90ml. Thought has obviously gone in to the design of these bottles with the view that the owners may keep them in boxes or draws for not only do the bottles neatly and safely stack upon one another but the cap comes with a label showing a good representation of the ink contained within. The front label also shows the colour, which could be useful once the bottle is near empty.
Not being a fan of blue-blacks, I did not have that many test swabs to compare with, however I did find a few purple inks that were not that far off until you put the cards alongside, at which point you can see a big difference.
The above three inks are all closes to Blu Cosmico, however none of them quite have the reddish tinge. I considered the ScriBo ink might actually be a dark purple, but when looking at my Col-O-Ring decks it very quickly became obvious it was not.
I am still not sure whether this Robert Oster is a blue or purple ink despite it’s lavender name. It is the closest I have to Blu Cosmico.
At £35 for 90ml this is reasonably priced for a luxury ink. Slightly more expensive then Pelikan Edelstein, regular Montblanc, and Graf von Faber Castell, but also slightly cheaper than Pilot Iroshizuku and Sailor Manyo. Sailor Shikiori and non-base Montblanc inks are considerably more expensive.
Thing is, as with most 50ml+ size bottles, you are not going to run out of ink any time soon, in fact you will probably not be looking to replace a bottle of this size for years unless you are a prodigious writer with just a couple of bottles.
Much to my surprise I quite like this ink. It is less a blue-black, more a dark indigo. It writes like a wet ink but dries quickly. It may not give much shading, but that is not necessarily a bad thing, especially if you are looking for an alternative colour to black for business use. I am not a sheen fan, but when Blu Cosmico does so it is only in small quantities. One thing that has crossed my mind is that the addition of a mix of different coloured glitter particles could make this ink write like a night sky as long as the shimmering element were to be left comparatively light in quantity.
- The Well Appointed Desk Col-o-ring ink testing cards.
- Midori MD A5 paper (cream page writing sample).
- Oxford Optik A5 paper (white page writing sample).
- Rhodia Dotpad No. 16 (drying tests).
- J. Herbin glass dip pen with the tip slightly smoothed (used the writing on the ink test cards).
- Franklin-Christoph 451 CDLI with a Mike Masuyama Needlepoint steel nib.
- OMAS 360 GM with a broad 18k gold nib.
- Franklin-Christoph 19 ‘1911’ with a broad SIG steel nib.
- Pelikan Pelikano with a starter/A steel nib (also used for the drying test and writing in the pocket book).