Ordinary black writing-ink contains a mixture of the tannates and gallates of the proto and sesquioxide of iron. These are insoluble in water and are suspended by means of gum. Creosote or essential oils are added to prevent moulding.
Many receipts are given for inks; those found below are reliable. As a general rule, the use of vinegar, logwood, and salts of copper is not to be recommended. Inks so prepared are richer at first, but will fade and act on pens.
Most ink is pale when first written with, but becomes dark; this is owing to oxidation. Such ink lasts better than that which is very black.
When ink fades, it is from a decomposition of the organic matter; it may be restored by brushing over with infusion of galls or solution of ferrocynnide of potassium. The durability of any ink is impaired by the use of steel pens.
Ink which is blue when first used contains sulphate of indigo, or soluble Prussian blue. It is an ink which is a true solution, and not merely a suspended precipitate. The same is true of Runge's Chrome Ink.
Marking Ink, containing nitrate of silver, are not indelible they may be removed by cyanide of potassium.
Carbon inks, such as coal-tar diluted with naphtha, are indelible.
Aniline black is nearly indelible; it is turned yellowish, but not removed, by chlorine.
_To make common Black Ink._
Pour 1 gall. of boiling soft water on 7 lb. of powdered galls, previously put into a proper vessel. Stop the mouth of the vessel, and set it in the sun in summer, or in winter where it may be warmed by any fire, and let it stand 2 or 3 days. Then add 1/2 lb. of green vitriol powdered, and having stirred the mixture well together with a wooden spatula, let it stand again for 2 or 3 days, repeating the stirring, when add further to it 5 oz. of gum Arabic dissolved in a quart of boiling water; and, lastly, 2 oz. of alum, after which let the ink be strained through a coarse linen cloth for use.
Another.--A good and durable black ink may be made by the following directions: To 2 pts. of water add 3 oz. of the dark-colored, rough-skinned Aleppo galls in gross powder, and of rasped log-wood, green vitriol, and gum arabic, each, 1 oz.
This mixture is to be put in a convenient vessel, and well shaken four or five times a day, for ten or twelve days, at the end of which time it will be fit for use, though it will improve by remaining longer on the ingredients.
_Stark's Ink (Writing Fluid)._
Twelve oz. nut-galls, 8 oz. each, sulphate of indigo and copperas, a few cloves, 4 or 6 oz. of gum Arabic for a gallon of ink. The addition of the sulphate of indigo renders the ink more permanent and less liable to mould. It is blue when first written with, but soon becomes an intense black.
_Chrome Ink (Runge's Ink)._
This ink is of an excellent blue-black, does not fade, and, as it contains no gum, flows freely from the pen. It does not affect steel pens. Take 1 oz. extract of logwood, pour over it 2 qts. of boiling water, and, when the extract is dissolved, add 1 dr. of yellow chromate of potassa. This ink can be made for twenty-five gents a gallon. If put into an old inkstand, it must be thoroughly cleansed, as ordinary ink decomposes chrome ink.
_Non-corrosive Writing Fluid._
Dissolve sulphate of indigo (chemic or Saxony blue) in twelve times its weight of water, add carbonate of soda as long as any precipitate falls, dissolve this in 160 parts of boiling water, let it settle and use the clear portion. It dries nearly black, flows very freely, and will not corrode pens or paper.
_Alizarine Ink, Leonhardi._
Digest 24 parts Allepo galls with 3 parts Dutch madder and 120 parts warm water. Filter. Mix 1.2 parts solution of indigo, 5.2 parts sulphate of iron, and 2 parts crude acetate of iron solution. This ink contains no gum, cannot get mouldy; the tannate of iron is prevented from separating by the sulphate of indigo. Alizarine ink may be evaporated to dryness and formed into cakes. One part with 6 parts hot water will then form an excellent writing fluid.
_Indestructible Ink for Resisting the Action of Corrosive Substances._
On many occasions it is of importance to employ an ink indestructible by any process, and will not equally destroy the material on which it is applied. For black ink, 25 grs. of copal in powder, are to be dissolved in 200 grs. of oil of lavender, by the assistance of a gentle heat, and are then to be mixed with 2 1/2 grs. of lampblack and 1/2 gr. of indigo; for red ink use 120 grs. of oil of lavender, 17 grs. of Copal, and 60 grains of vermilion. A little oil of lavender or of turpentine may be added if the ink be found too thick. A mixture of genuine asphaltum dissolved in oil of turpentine or benzine, amber varnish and lampblack, would be still superior.
This ink is particularly useful in labelling phials, etc. containing chemical or corrosive substances.
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