Monday, December 10, 2012

Noodler's Green Marine ink review

I think it's bad form to start any review with the conclusion but I'm afraid I can't help it in this case. In a nutshell, I absolutely love Noodler's Green Marine and it is definitely the best green ink I have tested so far. If your tastes are similar to mine, you can stop right here and confidently buy yourself a bottle or a sample. If not, read on to find out more about this ink.

Before I start, I'll just mention that I tested a sample of this ink (and not a whole bottle) in my long-suffering Pilot Varsity.

If you buy a bottle of Noodler's Green Marine, it will come to no surprise that it costs the usual $12.50 for 3oz / 90ml, or $0.14 per milliliter.

Color and saturation
One of the reasons why I like Green Marine so much is the dark color. I've been looking for a dark green ink and this one is almost exactly what I was hoping for. While it comes very close to Noodler's Gruene Cactus and Noodler's Hunter Green, it is darker than both of these, with Hunter the lightest and Gruene Cactus in the middle. As for the saturation, it is on the high side, as you can see (scroll to the bottom for the samples).

The second reason why Noodler's Green Marine brings me so much joy is the shading. I certainly wasn't expecting it but this ink really likes to shade, even with the Varsity's medium/fine nib. To me, shading gives an ink character and personality and this one has plenty of both.

None that I could see.

Because this is a dark ink, a small amount of ghosting is inevitable on cheap paper. However, the reverse side remains usable. I can attest to this because I've been using this ink daily at work for the past couple of weeks on cheap copy paper.

Flow and lubrication
Number three reason for loving Green Marine is the way it flows. I never tire of saying it: I am a big fan of wet flowing inks. On a scale of 1-10, I would rate this one a 8/9. It flows beautifully in the Varsity and glides like butter across the paper. It makes me want to pick up the pen to write something, even when I don't have anything to jot down.

Drying time
Noodler's Green Marine isn't perfect in all aspects, but nothing in this universe of ours is. Perhaps as a consequence of its wetness, it dries rather slowly on high quality, glossy paper such as the Rhodia 80g I tested it on. As you can see from the sample, it took close to 40 seconds to dry and even then it still smeared easily when I rubbed it. I suggest giving it ample time to dry if using it on more expensive (and less absorbent) paper.

On the other hand, it dries fairly quickly on regular copy paper, under 10 seconds. Either way, this doesn't bother me in the least; the benefits outweigh the slight inconvenience of a longer drying time on specific types of paper.

Smearing when dry
While there's no smearing on photocopy paper, Noodler's Green Marine is likely to smear if rubbed, when used on paper such as my Rhodia 80g, even after it has had ample time to dry (like 2-3 weeks). But many dark, saturated inks also have the same tendency so this isn't a quirk exclusive to this ink.

Water resistance
Here's another surprising fact about Noodler's Green Marine. Though it isn't marked as water resistant in any way, it is a lot more water resistant than most regular inks I've tested. Just look at the sample. It's amazing. After being exposed to running water for more than a minute, only a little ink washed off and the text and drawings remained perfectly legible. If this is a "hidden" feature and I'm ignorant of it, someone please let me know. In any case, it makes me even happier to get this unexpected bonus.

If I sound ecstatic about this ink, it's because I am. Noodler's Green Marine may well be the perfect green ink I've been searching for. I just love how it flows and glides on paper. I love its dark color and nice shading. To top it all off, a little water won't intimidate it. If you are looking for a dark green ink, I don't see how you could go wrong with Noodler's Green Marine. I highly recommend it!

Here are the two writing samples on photocopy and Rhodia 80g paper respectively.

Noodler's Green Marine on photocopy

Noodler's Green Marine on Rhodia


  1. An excellent review, thank you. I do have to admit, though, based just on color this isn't going to top my favorite green for me, Private Reserve Avacado. This is going to sound strange but the Noodler's Green Marine is just, well, too green for me.

  2. Well, there you go, I'm not a big fan of Avocado myself :)

  3. Peninkcillin, you have pointed out the one thing that drives me crazy about my favorite green. You spelled Avocado correctly but Private Reserve insists upon spelling it Avacado. I have never found out why but it just doesn't look right to me.

  4. I've been using Noodler's Eel Green for a couple of years now, but I think I'll have to keep an eye out for this one.
    Nice blog you have here too, by the way!

  5. Good grief. I didn't realize that. I guess that makes me dislike it just a tiny bit less.

  6. I love love love green marine! It was my second bottle of ink I ever bought, and I haven't looked back since. Great review!

  7. Thanks! I'm glad I'm not the only one. But I guess if you like dark green inks you can't go wrong with this one.