Diamine 30ml sample bottles are brilliant; a huge range of good-quality inks, at very reasonable prices, and they’re even British too. There’s just one catch – those bottles. The plastic is fairly robust, but so many pens just can’t get their sections through that tiny neck – and the bottom seems such a long way down. That’s fine if you’re filling an eye-dropper, but there’s more to nibbage than that filling system, after all.
There is another way and that’s to buy one of Diamine’s remarkable box sets; both flowers and composers come in rather nice glass cubes with a sufficiently wide neck to accommodate most pens. But they don’t sell them individually!So we needed another other way and our newest United Inkdom member has found it. Rob has explored the arcane websites of various pharmaceutical and catering suppliers and assembled a fascinating test-pack of alternative glass and plastic bottles along with the pipettes to fill them up. Scribble and Ian have been trying them out too – and you can win one of these experimenting kits as well (see below)!The results are impressive; for just a few pennies you can get all sorts of hardy alternatives. Admittedly one of the ‘biological sample’ bottles acquired a rather suspicious crack in the post, but all the glass bottles survived and Ian tested the full set for leakage without any tell-tale dribbles appearing. Our team consensus is that alternative glassware is probably the way forward. For further details and links to suppliers, see Rob’s extensive blog article.
These alternative bottles make for handy mixing kits too – all you need is a syringe or pipette and you’re ready to roll. There’s even likely to be a new purple on the scene soon as a result…You can win one of these kits too, along with a fine 30ml Diamine sample to decant into the bottle of your choice and a dip pen for testing your inky cocktail creations. Just leave a comment below telling us which colour you’d like to be able to dip a big fat nib into – we’ll pick a winner at random but we’re genuinely curious to know! NB this competition has now closed and the kit is winging its way over the Atlantic, but comments are still welcome!