12 Days of Inkmas: Day 10 – Lennon Tool Bar 2019 Autumn Pomelo and PenBBS 342

You know how I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect lime green ink since I started this blog? If this is your first ink review here on The Desk, I love lime green and I have been on a decade’s long hunt for the perfect ink that captures this illusive hue. Not too light to be difficult to read but not so dark that it slides into olive or forest green. Needless to say, its a challenge to find the perfect lime ink.

I thought for Inkmas, I’d make another attempt. Initially, I was planning to just review thePen BBS 342 Matcha Ice Cream ($16 for 60ml bottle) and then I decided it might be more interesting to review the Lennon Tool Bar 2019 Pomelo ($24 for 30ml bottle) . Finally, in a moment of indecision, I decided to include them both. They are quite similar in color with some slight differences.

Lenn Tool Bar Pomelo bottle

First, notably is the price. The PenBBS ink is  almost half the price for twice as much ink. All things being similar, that would and should have made my decision for me.

Pen BBS 342 and Lenn Tool Bar Pomelo bottle swatches

In swatches, Lennon Tool Bar is a little lighter overall and slightly more yellow.

Lenn Tool Bar Pomelo Tomoe River writing sample

Once it’s inked up in an EF nib though, the slight differences become almost imperceptible. Both inks appear a bit lighter when wet and dry a bit darker. The both have lovely shading and I expect that in a wider nib, the colors will be a bit darker and the differences in the hues may be more evident.

Pen BBS 342 and Lenn Tool Bar Pomelo writing sample

That said, in identical pens, the Pen BBS ink is a bit drier which might work to your advantage in wider nibs and the Pomelo is a bit wetter. The Lennon Tool Bar makes the line widths of the EF nib appear a but wider.

Lime ink comparison

As you can see, I have quite a few other inks to compare the Matcha Ice Cream and Pomelo against. The Kobe 43 Gakuen Toshi Fresh Green is probably closest in color and, as its a Sailor ink, is probably the most consistent in performance. Robert Oster Sublime is a close second though it may be a bit more vibrant.

Overall, I’d be inclined to either purchase the reasonably priced PenBBS Matcha Ice Cream or stick with the Kobe 43 which is a high quality lubricated ink from a well-known ink producer. Pomelo is lovely but all things being remarkedly similar, it’s not quite worth the price.


DISCLAIMER: Some items included in this review were provided free of charge by Vanness Pen Shop for the purpose of review. Please see the About page for more details.

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  1. I know what you mean about how hard it is to find a perfect warm green. I love that Pomelo! That’s pretty close to perfect.

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