Ink Review: Rohrer & Klingner "Scabix" (1:1 Scabiosa & Salix Mix)


Rohrer & Klingner "Scabix" (1:1 Scabiosa & Salix Mix)
Pen: Pilot Custom 74 F
Paper: Rhodia Dotpad 80gsm

I was perusing Instagram one day, and came across a post by Brad Dowdy of an awesome greyish, blue-purple ink.  I didn't recognize the color, but I was in love with it nonetheless.  After I finally caught up on the Pen Addict podcast, I discovered this was Brad's "Scabix" mix - equal parts Rohrer & Klingner Scabiosa and Salix.

Both Scabiosa and Salix are Iron Gall inks.  Iron Gall ink is made from iron salts and tannic acids from vegetable sources.  They are typically blue, purple, black or brown in color and have a high level of permanence.  The ink is slightly acidic, making many folks worry about damage to their pens; however, modern Iron Gall is FAR less corrosive than vintage iron gall inks.  A true vintage Iron Gall would destroy a pen very quickly.  In modern pens, modern Iron Gall ink will not do damage so long as you practice normal pen maintenance.

One of the coolest things about Iron Gall ink is that once the air hits it, it begins to oxidize and changes color slightly, giving it a slight greyish tone.  Don't worry, it won't change dramatically; it just gives the ink some character.  Scabix (or, Saliosa if you prefer!) is a perfect mix of a blue-black ink and a grey purple.  It gives a vintage feel, which I really like - makes you think back to the inks that our constitution, or other significant documents were written with. Scabix has fairly quick dry time, and behaves amazingly well, even on cheaper paper.

Scabiosa and Salix by themselves are great inks as well - keep an eye out for reviews of them soon!  You can grab a bottle of both Salix or Scabiosa at Goulet or a similar vendor for $12.00.