The Aurora Optima Nero Perla was inked up soon after it arrived on November 7th. Aurora Black seemed appropriate as its inaugural ink. It’s the only Aurora ink that I have (there are only two and the other is blue) and it’s been awhile since I used it. In addition, the color of the ink and pen compliment each other nicely.
I used the pen regularly and it lasted a month and a day, going dry on December 8th. (It’s taken me awhile to write up these notes.)
Aurora Black is a nice dark, saturated black color. It has a wetter flow than many other inks that I use, but the line remains true to the nib size and the ink is well behaved. There’s no noticeable feathering, although I only used very good paper with this combination.
My Seven Seas Writer and Crossfield notebooks saw most of the usage and they have Tomeo River Paper. The ink is a little slow drying for my tastes, especially on this paper and in a medium nib. I use the Writer for Journalling and similar writing so this wasn’t a problem since I could give the page time to dry. The Crossfield gets used for notes, where I pay less attention to such things, but managed to avoid smudging the ink.
A Write Notepads wire bound notebook also got some use. This is probably the least fountain pen friendly paper that I use on a regular basis. The ink soaked into the paper and dried relatively quickly although there was considerable show-through and even some minor bleed-through if I made multiple passes over one spot. I use this book for note taking and rarely use anything other than a fine or extra fine for this very reason, so this wasn’t unexpected. While I did use the Optima for some note taking the fact is I rarely use a medium nib for note taking so this really isn’t going to be a frequent task for this pen.
The Aurora Optima looks small but it is extremely comfortable in my hand. The long section certainly helps as does the girth of the pen. There’s just enough weight to give the pen a solid feel.
The pen has a reserve reservoir that holds some extra ink for when the main reservoir is empty. Since there’s a ink window this seemed more of a gimmick rather than a feature. I may have been a little harsh. The Aurora black ink clung to the window making it look full as the pen went dry. Holding the pen up to the light still showed solid black in the window. I lowered to plunger to scrap the ink off the window and to release the ink reserver. I got an additional A5 page (approximately) after this. Lowering the plunger was a bit scary but there wasn’t enough ink left to force any out of the nib.
I thought the pen was extremely easy to clean. While the nib unit can easily be unscrewed for cleaning I don’t like doing this for routine cleaning and just worked the plunger a few times. After letting the pen sit nib down overnight I noticed additional Aurora Black ink through the window and gave it another quick cleaning.
I’ve already refilled the Aurora Optima, just not with Aurora Black.