Every year, Lamy release a limited edition color of their popular Al-Star line, along with a companion ink of the same color. This year, I'm especially excited for the limited edition color: Pacific Blue. I'm admittedly a huge fan of turquoise and teal, and this pen is a delicious, shiny color that fits my bill perfectly. Pair that with an equally gorgeous turquoise ink, and we're all set for a killer combo.
The Pacific Blue Al-Star
You might love the new color, or it might make you cringe. Either way, it's impossible to miss. This is a loud, shocking, electric blue with subtle green undertones that set it off. Obviously, the color is inspired from the Pacific Ocean, and it does a great job of factoring in all the factors of the sea. When looking at this pen, it somehow looks as if it might be partially liquid while it sits on the desk. For me, it's a color that makes me extremely happy, and I love the pen for that.
Since the only difference with this Al-Star is the color, I won't spend a lot of time on the details. Check out my review of the Charged Green Al-Star from 2016. Everything holds true for this copy as well!
The Lamy Al-Star is a solid fountain pen. It's not as affordable as the Safari line, and some people enjoy the Safari line more for many great reasons, but the Al-Star hits a nice balance of design, weight, feel, and awesome colors that set it apart from the Safari. If you haven't tried out an Al-Star (or a Safari...), then I highly recommend picking up this limited edition color.
The Lamy Al-Star in Pacific Blue is $36.00 and available with an EF, F, or M nib. Remember that Lamy nibs are easy to swap out with another size as well. Each Al-Star ships with a single blue cartridge, or you can purchase a cartridge-converter separately.
Lamy Pacific Blue ink
The other half of this year's Lamy special edition combo is the Pacific Blue ink. You might have heard, but it's no secret that Pacific Blue is, in fact, the same ink as Lamy Turquoise. I don't understand why Lamy released Turquoise under a limited edition moniker instead of formulating a unique ink, but that's not the point of this review. As such, keep that in mind if you already own Lamy Turquoise! You can safely skip this ink knowing that you already have it.
Lamy Pacific Blue is a beautiful turquoise ink that leans toward the lighter and blue spectrum. For example, I found that Kaweco Turquoise was a bit darker than the Lamy version. Iroshizuku ama-iro is actually very similar to Pacific Blue, but I think it has better shading qualities. Regardless, it's a gorgeous blue-green that radiates on the page! I love using this ink because of the color, and it's been difficult for me to switch back to Ama-iro over the past week. It's a great color.
Shading is great with this ink, which is something I haven't been very excited about with other Lamy inks. There isn't a massive range of variation, but it's tasteful. Again, it's intended to remind you of the Pacific ocean, so a degree of shading is expected. Lamy delivers this with high marks. The shading behavior is easy to notice in this medium nib, but it shows off a bit more in larger nibs. There's a minimal degree of shading in small nibs, but that shouldn't be a surprise.
The ink performs really well. I've not had any issues with skipping, starting, or clogging. Cleaning is a breeze, and lubrication is very balanced.
I haven't been able to detect any bleeding or feathering so far on my normal papers. There's a degree of feathering on cheap copy paper, but that is expected. Being on the light side, show-through isn't a problem in most cases. Using Rhodia paper, the opposite side of the page is completely usable after the top side is used.
Dry time is average compared to other fountain pen inks I use. It dries consistently by 15 seconds, while pooled areas take about 20 seconds to dry completely. Not bad, but not exceptional.
One unique feature with any Lamy bottled ink is the ink blotter included at the base of the bottle. This is convenient for cleaning the grip section and nib after you fill it with ink. These blotting strips do a great job and prevent you from using a tissue or paper towel to do the same job. Much less waste.
You can purchase Lamy Pacific blue in a 50ml bottle, or as a 5-pack of cartridges. Personally, I think the bottle is a better bargain. And remember — if you already own Lamy Turquoise, you don't need this!
(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)
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