Sailor Ink Studio 573 bottle

Ink of the Week – Sailor Ink Studio 573

John BosleyFountain Pen Ink 12 Comments

I know that we all have at least one, and for me this is it. That’s right, I’m talking about a bottle of ink that you purchased and never even used. This week we’re going to take a look at Sailor Ink Studio 573. A while back I was in Washington D.C. for work and made my first trip to Farhney’s Pens. I wanted to buy something, but couldn’t decide what to get. I figured a bottle of ink would work, but then couldn’t decide which one to get. I guess I was in an indecisive mood that day, probably due to being exhausted from exploring the city. Anyway, I randomly chose a Sailor Ink Studio color that looked interesting and went on my way. It went into my ink storage when I got home and didn’t come out until this week. Let’s experience this ink together!

Sailor Ink Studio 573 doodles

Here’s a look at Sailor 573 in a variety of doodles

Sailor Ink Studio 573

To start, let’s take a look at the ink itself. Based on the color on the bottle, I expected a rich, mustard-yellow color. It’s actually more of an orangey brown. It’s not quite pumpkin orange, not quite caramel brown. I guess it is pretty close to the label color, I just expected something a little different for some reason. I like it, but am not sure if it’s much different from a few other inks that I already own like Diamine Terracotta or KWZ Honey (I think it falls somewhere between the two).

Sailor Ink Studio 573 doodles

This ink has a very interesting chromatography that I did not expect. When allowed to dissipate with water, pinks and yellows appear! The yellow is very intense and caught me off guard when I first saw it. I’m sure some people could make some really interesting art with this ink and some water.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 chromatography

This ink has a very colorful chromatography

It doesn’t have bad dry times, but like most Sailor inks is fairly wet and doesn’t dry super quickly. It does have a bit of dark sheen that shows up with wet nibs and really makes the ink pop. In other great news, it doesn’t tend to smear once it dries! This came as a surprise to me. It isn’t exactly waterproof, but a good amount of red stays behind on the pager after this ink is exposed to water, so it should still be legible if it gets wet.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 waterproof

This ink is still legible after being exposed to water.

The Pens I Used

Each week I choose five different pens to fill with the ink I’m testing. My goal is to get a variety of nib sizes and styles, as well as a mix of modern and vintage pens. Here are the pens I chose this week and some writing samples from each:

Sailor Ink Studio 573 pens used

The pens for this week (L-R): Lamy Safari, Secretary, Parker 45, Lamy 2000, Sailor Pro Gear

Lamy Safari – F nib

The fine nib in this Safari isn’t super wet and pairs nicely with this ink for writing. The ink looked lighter than with most other nibs, but still showed some shading. I also enjoyed doodling with it.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 lamy safari

Writing sample with F Lamy Safari nib

Secretary (vintage) – M nib

This vintage pen has a wetter nib that really makes this ink look great. It brings out the sheen, which helps make the ink look darker than with some of the other nibs. Probably my favorite of the week for writing.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 secretary vintage

Writing sample with vintage Secretary M flex nib

Parker 45 (vintage) – M nib

This nib started out really wet, but settled into a slightly drier writing mode after a few lines. Once it dried out a bit it really started showing the shading of this ink.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 parker 45

Writing sample with vintage Parker 45 M nib

Lamy 2000 – Custom grind Architect nib

This Lamy nib was too wet for this ink. I found it difficult to write with, which is interesting as I’ve never had that experience with this nib. I also tried doodling with it and didn’t have much luck. I guess some inks are just too wet to use with some nibs.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 lamy 2000

Writing sample with Lamy 2000 architect grind nib

Sailor Pro Gear – Zoom nib

Speaking of wet nibs, I would have thought this combo wouldn’t work very well either. Sailor Zoom nibs are pretty wet, but maybe the extra surface area made this easier to write with? It’s a huge nib and not very practical for writing, but I didn’t experience any type of flooding issues like I did with the Lamy. It was a lot of fun to doodle with and made the ink look great!

Sailor Ink Studio 573 sailor pro gear zoom nib

Writing sample with Sailor Pro Gear Zoom nib


On cheaper paper, this ink did tend to bleed a bit. I didn’t see much feathering. On good paper, it behaved very well with no observed bleedthrough or feathering. I think with a pen that’s not too wet, it would be fine to use on any paper. With a wetter nib, stick to fountain-pen-friendly paper.

Sailor Ink Studio 573 leuchtturm

Writing sample on Leuchtturm paper

Sailor Ink Studio 573 cosmo air light

Writing sample on Cosmo Air Light 75gsm paper

Sailor Ink Studio 573 Clairefontaine Basic

Writing sample on Clairefontaine Basic paper

Cleaning The Ink Out Of Pens

Inks that have red in them are usually difficult to clean out of pens. Surprisingly, this ink didn’t take too much work to get out of the pens this week. Of course, they weren’t clean with the first flush, but I had them all cleaned up fairly quickly. I would probably use this ink in any of my pens.


I am really glad that I finally used this ink! I always enjoy caramel-y, orange-y colors like this. While it is similar to Diamine Terracotta, which is a color that I already have, Sailor Ink Studio 573 is a fine ink. It has fantastic shading and doesn’t smear once it’s dry. It also has a really interesting chromatography. I’m excited to spend some time experimenting mixing it with water. It feels like an autumnal color, but I think I’d be happy to ink it up any time of year. I’m looking forward to using this “new” ink more often!

Sailor Ink Studio 573 detail

Comments 12

  1. John, I appreciate the fact that you use different pens. Here’s a suggestion: How about displaying a photo that shows the pen nibs, rather than (or in addition to) the full pen pic.

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      Marc, I try to show the pens merely as a reference in case anyone doesn’t know a particular pen by name alone. Would seeing the nibs help translate to the writing samples or just be eye candy?

  2. Wow, I really think this is a beauty! The brown makes the orange more subtle–I can’t think of another (certainly not in my own collection) like it. It’s going directly to my shopping list. Thank you, John!

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  3. This is a lovely ink. I’m curious, did you have any issues with crud ending up on any of your nibs like often happens with orange inks?

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  4. John,

    I own some fairly unattractive pens that happen to have great writing nibs, and I have some gorgeous pens with rather blah nibs. So, to answer your question, I enjoy looking at nibs more than pens, plus, sometimes they are real eye candy!

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