Sumi Ink (am I crazy?)

rockanon

Gravity Guru
Hi All,

I know airbrushes will "blow just about any liquid", and I know inks work particularly well when formulated for airbrushing (any high flow).

But what about Japanese Sumi Ink? I have a lot of this lying around, it's mostly for dip style fountain / quill pens.

Since the ink has a high carbon content, am I risking potential damage to the airbrush internals blowing this kind of ink?

I suspect the partials might be kind of large, but I'd plan to use a 0.4mm or larger needle since those blow just about anything.

Would love to hear if anyone's tried Sumi Ink before or should I steer clear?

Thanks in advance.
 
I cannot offer any good advice but I am keen to know the answer.

Sumi ink has some interesting characteristics which could make for some nice artwork, its quite opaque usually and does not mix with other layers of ink.

I should imagine (but may be assuming wrongly) the particle size will vary with the quality, it is generally viewed as a quality ink though because of the long process of making it and its expensive.

Its consistency does not seem to dissimilar to india ink and flows well with dip pen. It also does not dry too fast so could be good in an airbrush.

Regards

Richard
 
Partical size should not be an issue they grind that stuff to a nub if your mixing it right.
But being a solid bar stock bits could become dislodged
Filter over the cup and Give it a go. You may need a touch of wetting agent / surfactant in there for the edges of the lines and shading sitting on top of your substrates
 
Partical size should not be an issue they grind that stuff to a nub if your mixing it right.
But being a solid bar stock bits could become dislodged
Filter over the cup and Give it a go. You may need a touch of wetting agent / surfactant in there for the edges of the lines and shading sitting on top of your substrates
The Sumi Ink for Manga is usually a dipping well of liquid ink. The premium sumi ink, as you mention, is sold in blocks. Both inks are basically made from candle wick soot and a binder (the bricks being i think animal fat).

I've still been reading up on this, but I think there might be some health hurdles atomizing candle ash. It's definitely possible to blow, but Im not sure how safe it would be (even with PPE) as it can be an eye irritant. I've also found if I let the ink dry on my calligraphy nibs it creates a very tough shell. Solvents will remove this, but i dunno how corrosive removing the dried carbon would be on my airbrush chrome finishes.
 
The Sumi Ink for Manga is usually a dipping well of liquid ink. The premium sumi ink, as you mention, is sold in blocks. Both inks are basically made from candle wick soot and a binder (the bricks being i think animal fat).

I've still been reading up on this, but I think there might be some health hurdles atomizing candle ash. It's definitely possible to blow, but Im not sure how safe it would be (even with PPE) as it can be an eye irritant. I've also found if I let the ink dry on my calligraphy nibs it creates a very tough shell. Solvents will remove this, but i dunno how corrosive removing the dried carbon would be on my airbrush chrome finishes.
As for Sumi liquid manga ink I know little off it.
When I seen Sumi i got over excited. Because it was something I had wittnesed dug into a long time ago. I loved how the Japanese turn random things into an art form. And drying ink blocks for 15 years like fine scotch then hallmarked like gold bars.
Carbon paraffin soot on it own is not corrosive. In it's powder form it has the ability to hold moisture and it's conductivity could get an electrolysis thing going on, but there shouldn't be enough residue left in your brush for that to ever happen. Carbon is pretty much inert and humans have been sucking in the fumes of burnt candles for years so not a lot there. It would be emulsifiers, preservatives, anti-coagulants and maybe wetting agents that you inhale not a lot of those are aromatic enough these days to squeeze though a good fitting auto paint respirator. And have long lasting effects If you have ever tailgated an old desil truck up a long hill you would be at a greater risk. I think
But the ingredients list on the back of the bottle will tell you a lot
Any weird name ending in "ene" "ane" is worth a google or take a picture and post it up.
 
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