Noodler’s Tiananmen – Ink Review

Noodler's Tiananmen - Ink Review
For the last in this batch of ink reviews, I have chosen Noodler’s Tiananmen, which according to the label is a “Specialty Issue”. This isn’t the only Noodler’s ink that is so described, and I’ve already reviewed a few others, but I’ve only picked up on the description now. I’ve not been able to find out what “Specialty” actually means, but the inks from this series I’ve reviewed so far (Ottoman Azure, Ottoman Rose and La Couleur Royale) have all had attractive colours and been good performers.

The Chinese consider red to be an auspicious colour, which is stated on the label for this ink. The name and label evoke the protests of 1989. While those protests led to the deaths of hundreds (or possibly thousands) the image on the label shows a symbol of hope, the so called “Tank Man” confronting a column of tanks. The label also states “One day, China will be free!” One could argue that while Western businesses continue to rely China to keep costs down and so maximise profit, that day will be a long way off but as I’m not about to start a boycott and throw away my Apple products I won’t get on my high horse just yet.

This 3 oz bottle came from my preferred Ebay supplier so I would consider the price moderate. The box and bottle are as standard. The test pen was a Pilot MR White Tiger with a medium nib.

Water resistance was minimal. Cleaning was easy enough, which was a bit of a surprise for a saturated red. The drying time was extended at more than 2 minutes, leading to easy smudging. This was less of a surprise – long drying times are something I am starting to associate with saturated inks, reds in particular.

Rhodia Dot Pad No 16

Noodler's Tiananmen - Ink Review - Rhodia Dot Pad
Performance on this paper was good. The only downside was the long dry time which led to easy smudging. The colour is a deeply saturated red with a slight hint of brown – I really like it.

Ryman Memo Block 9cm x 9cm

Noodler's Tiananmen - Ink Review - Ryman Memo
No complaints on this paper – performance was good.

Yellow Post-It

Noodler's Tiananmen - Ink Review - Post It
Good performance from this ink on the Post-It too.

Field Note – Pitch Black

Noodler's Tiananmen - Ink Review - Field Notes
Another ink falls at the feet of Field Notes paper – lots of feathering and bleed.

Mnemosyne Word Card

Noodler's Tiananmen - Ink Review - Word Card
The saturation of this ink shows through, with more than a hint of shading.


Another “Specialty” ink that proves to be a good performer. The only downside is the dry time, but that is starting to become as feature of red inks that I like (and more saturated inks in general). I really like this one, and is already near the top of my list of “good” reds.

2 thoughts on “Noodler’s Tiananmen – Ink Review”

    1. Thanks for your comment and sorry for the delay in approving it – I held it until I was in a position to respond and clarify my feelings. I think (although if anyone knows to the contrary they can correct me) that the Noodler’s inks are unique in sometimes carrying political statements which may then more overtly expressed in the associated YouTube videos. I tend to treat these more as a curiosity than anything else, even thought they don’t always correspond with my views. However, I’ve not come across anything yet that would stop me buying a particular ink. Now we are in a time of more polarised politics who knows if that will continue. To be fair I doubt that the views that are being expressed are intended to promote sales or profit – if anything I suspect they will have the opposite effect. Beside, the fall in the UK pound and the increase in postal charges to the UK mean I probably won’t be ordering much directly from the US in the near future. I do have a big backlog to get through though.

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