Rohrer & Klingner Inks, Part 1

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Rohrer & Klingner Leipzig Co. was a cooperation between Johann Adolf Rohrer and Felix Arthur Klingner in 1907, in the German city Leipzig. The company specializes in making inks using natural materials and methods, and today, already the fifth generation of employees are keeping the company running.

Rohrer & Klingner produces 2 kinds of inks which are safe to use with fountain pens: writing ink and document ink. Many of their other ink types are pigmented inks, and not likely suitable for fountain pens. In this new series of ink introduction, I’ll be talking about the writing inks that come in 18 different colours, and I will run through them in alphabetical order. As this is just an overview, I am not going into the depth of the ink, but just providing a description of each ink and my own thoughts of each.

I’d like to extend my thanks to Fook Hing Trading Co. for generously sponsoring me this entire set of inks to showcase on OFP. As usual, all opinions here are my own.


R&K-Alt-Bordeaux-swabAlt-Bordeaux • Old Bordeaux • Bordeaux Vieux • Bordeaux Antico

This ink is reminiscent of wine, and judging by the name given to it, it is not surprising why they named this ink as such. Bordeaux is a region in France most famous for its vineyards, and those of us who drink wine would most definitely have heard of Bordeaux wine. Alt-Bordeaux ink on its own, being a dark colour, looks like rich wine in the glass bottle itself.

When swabbed, you can see the colour hues falling somewhere among red, pink, and magenta. I felt that this is quite a special one, as the colour of the dried ink looks like muted wine stain. “Alt” is a German word meaning “old”. Indeed, the colour of the ink resembles old wine stained on paper.

Alt-Bordeaux flows well (moderately wet) but has medium-low water resistance. There is still the original ink spot visible after my water-resistance test, but faint.


R&K-Alt-Goldgrun-swabAlt-Goldgrün • Old Golden Green • Vert d’Or Vieux • Verde d’Oro Antico

Alt-Goldgrün is another special ink, one which I feel is the most interesting of all the Rohrer & Klingner inks. This time, despite having an “alt” meaning old, this ink looks far from muted. It is a rather bright, almost-apple-green-but-not-quite-there colour. The first image that comes to my mind when I see this ink is apples mixed with brown, fallen leaves. It is not as bright as apple green, but the amount of muting does not dampen its vibrance too much.

What is special about this ink is the way it separates into golden-green and a darker, almost blue-green component. When I clean my nib on an absorbent tissue paper, the ink spreads out and separates into the distinct colours. Many inks do separate on tissue paper, but this is the most distinct separation I have encountered so far.

The ink flows well too, but water resistance cannot be counted on – almost all the ink washed off, leaving a pale brownish spot on the round label.


R&K-Blau-Permanent-swabBlau Permanent • Permanent Blue • Bleu Permanent • Blue Permanente

Despite its name, this blue ink is not really a permanent ink, nor is it a document ink, nor is it a pigmented or iron-gall ink. Despite it being non-permanent, I found that the water resistance of Blau Permanent surpasses all the other blue inks in the Rohrer & Klingner. A significant portion of the blue ink is retained on the paper after the water resistance test, so one could imagine that our handwriting can still be preserved if we drop our notebook into the sea or the sink. And the reason I am saying that it is not permanent, is because you can still see some bleeding of the ink colour after the water interacts with it. Permanent inks should not show bleeding!

This blue is a standard medium blue, reminding me of Pilot Iroshizuku Tsuyu-kusa, but both inks have their own characteristics. Blau Permanent is a more settled, quieter blue, while Tsuyu-kusa is a little brighter. When observed under bright light, Blau Permanent shows a hint of purplish shading at the edges of each stroke, which you might delight in when using the ink in a pen with generous ink flow.

Rohrer & Klingner has 18 inks in total, and today I reviewed the first 3 of the range. I hope you enjoyed it so far, and stay tuned for the other ink colours that are coming out soon. Each day, after reviewing the 3 inks of the day, I will be giving away the 3 inks that I have reviewed in the post to a lucky reader.

Meanwhile, here’s the giveaway of a set of these 3 inks I talked about today! Just enter the contest using the Rafflecopter app below. Gain entry chances by:

  1. Leaving a comment (compulsory)
  2. Subscribing to my blog via email (optional)
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  4. Liking Fook Hing Trading Co. on Facebook (optional)

Contest ends on 19 Dec, midnight, Singapore time (GMT+8).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

40 Responses

  1. Cody H 20 December 2015 / 3:08 AM

    R&K inks have really surprised me with some great colours! Thanks for the giveaway!

  2. rdcalhoon 19 December 2015 / 11:24 PM

    I am a big fan of Alt Golgdrun. Thanks of the chance.

  3. Derek 19 December 2015 / 5:48 PM

    Alt Goldgrun is the standout (in terms of color) for me in the series. Waiting for your take on Scabiosa – got it a few weeks ago and was very pleasantly surprised with it, despite not being a big fan of purple inks.

    • Maybelline T. 19 December 2015 / 5:50 PM

      Going through it in alphabetical order, so haven’t gotten to S yet! I’m also looking forward to the later inks!

  4. fehim 19 December 2015 / 4:30 PM

    Thank you for the giveaway

  5. stu elman 19 December 2015 / 12:58 PM

    A few weeks ago I got my first 3 set of R & K inks from Massdrop. One of the inks is the bordeaux. I absolutely love the color. I ordered the magenta and green along with it. The bordeaux is as you say. It is just beautiful. It is a rich color, not really red, not really purple, or pink. It’s a great mix of them all. My favorite aspect of these inks is that the inks all flow very well. In 3 different pens, each one slides right across the paper with no effort at all.

    • Maybelline T. 19 December 2015 / 5:52 PM

      Yes indeed, bordeaux is a really special colour. I love the red-magenta-purple series of inks, so the bordeaux definitely catches my attention.

  6. Charles 19 December 2015 / 10:00 AM

    Beautiful inks, thanks for the giveaway.

  7. diane mueller 19 December 2015 / 6:48 AM

    THank you for introducing me to another place to spend money on pens!!!!

  8. Peveril 19 December 2015 / 1:55 AM

    What a lot of inks to go through! I look forward to reading more.

  9. sfeng121 19 December 2015 / 12:37 AM

    those are some nice purty colors

  10. Michael Simon 18 December 2015 / 11:45 PM

    Beautiful inks. As usual, great informative descriptions–thanks.

  11. Jahir Hussain 18 December 2015 / 11:01 PM

    Good Inks. Would like to try them one of these days.

  12. gytan 18 December 2015 / 10:20 PM

    The ink look awesome!

  13. A Phang 18 December 2015 / 9:52 PM

    Awesome stuff there! Thanks for sharing the (ink) love! 🙂

  14. nultylynch 18 December 2015 / 9:25 PM

    I need to try that green!

  15. Michelle Suratos 18 December 2015 / 8:08 PM

    The first three inks all look great! I am intrigued by bordeaux. Looking forward to reading the review of the other colors.

  16. J.A.M. 18 December 2015 / 8:05 PM

    I’ve tried Alt-Goldgrun and I love it! The name just fits so well! Would love to try the other colors.

  17. Wee How 18 December 2015 / 8:04 PM

    Really like the green

  18. Shubhranshu das 18 December 2015 / 6:53 PM

    Alt-Greengrun. .. one of the more interesting inks available… found that stubs and italic nibbed pens give really nice results…

  19. GaryV 18 December 2015 / 6:28 PM

    Thanks for sharing the inks through the giveaway! Have never tried these, so would love to win a bottl

  20. Chun Ting 18 December 2015 / 5:35 PM

    Salix is my everyday ink for official documents, like the powdery navy colour and water resistance. I think alt-goldgrun is not very legible for everyday use.

  21. Philip Ong 18 December 2015 / 5:22 PM

    Thanks for the review Maybelline, the alt-goldgrun looks most interesting though the permanent blue is more practical

  22. Thea 18 December 2015 / 5:20 PM

    Great article and a generous giveaway by Fook Hing Trading Company!

  23. Yinn 18 December 2015 / 5:01 PM

    Awesome! I just started using alt goldgrun the other day and find the shading amazing !

  24. AKMA 18 December 2015 / 4:57 PM

    All three are handsome inks, but the Alt-Goldgrün does look particularly interesting.

  25. Julian 18 December 2015 / 4:51 PM

    I really love the Alt-Bordeaux! when I use to do wine classes in school I always try drawing with the wine spillage on paper. really love the colour on this ink.

  26. Chris 18 December 2015 / 4:41 PM

    awesome! cant wait to hear your thoughts on salix.

  27. JW 18 December 2015 / 4:41 PM

    definite favorite would be the old golden green. it reminds me of iroshizuku’s chiku-rin, which i already love!

    • Maybelline T. 19 December 2015 / 5:54 PM

      Good point, although someone else said that the Permanent is just a version of blue ink in their series that is more waterproof than the other blues…

  28. SanYong 18 December 2015 / 4:22 PM

    Thanks for coming up with such informative articles! Love to see more such blog post from ya! 🙂 I’m love the Blau Permanent! My favorite shade of blue!

  29. ClarenceT 18 December 2015 / 4:14 PM

    I LOVE using smaragdgrun.

  30. buntyw 18 December 2015 / 4:09 PM

    Old Golden Green!

  31. mehandiratta 18 December 2015 / 3:29 PM

    Thank you for amazing start on Rohrer and klingner inks… Can’t wait more for others to come..

I would love to hear your thoughts!