Ink eradicator:
historical overview

In the 1930's Pelikan had already developed an ink bleach that could erase ink. In the beginning it was referred to as "Radierwasser" (Eng. Erasing water) or "Tintentod" (Eng. Ink death).

Ink eradicators

Most people already know what a ink eradicator is, but who knows how they actually work?
In this edition of Teachers info we would like to give more information regarding our ink eradicators. After some historical information we will explain more about this Product in greater detail. We will also go into the subject matter of Pelikan's "Royal Blue" ink and ask ourselves if it is in anyway poisonous.
To finish of we will show how with both Pelikan's ink eradicators and Royal Blue ink, marvellous pictures can be created.

A historical overview

In the 1930's Pelikan had already developed an ink bleach that could erase ink. In the beginning it was referred to as "Radierwasser" (Eng. Erasing water) or "Tintentod" (Eng. Ink death).
In 1972 Pelikan created its first ink erasing pen called "Tintentiger" (Eng. Ink Tiger).

 In 1974 the name was changed to "Tinten-Blitz" (Eng. Ink lightning). With this "Tinten-Blitz" one could erase Royal Blue ink and later write over the corrected area with a ballpoint pen.

In 1977 Pelikan released the "Pelikan-Super-Pirat". This pen had an incorporated erasing and correcting fluid in the one pen. This version is still being produced up to today and remains the most sold ink eradicator in Germany.

In the Spring of 2003 a new generation of ink eradicators was released. The Pelikan Superpirat is now available in two different tip sizes:

  • B is for erasing whole words
  • F is for erasing single letters

and the Pelikan Super Sheriff which has a multi-function tip for fine and broad erasing.
Each of the 3 Pelikan ink eradicators are available in 4 different colours.


The proper way to use the ink eradicator

In order to erase a written text, start by softly gliding over the area needing correction with the eraser tip. Whilst erasing it is wise not to do so for too long, or to push to hard as the paper otherwise becomes soft and tears. It should usually be enough to go over the area in question once or twice. It is also important to make sure that the ink on the paper dries before commencing correcting. After letting the erasing fluid dry into the paper it is alright to use the corrective ink for correction. The Pelikan ink eradicator covers a writing length of up to 500 m.


The magic of “eradicating”


The name given to the erasing fluid does not actually describe how the correcting process effectively happens. The Royal Blue ink is not erased, but dyed, or to put it another way – the inks colour pigmentation is removed.



The contents of a ink eradicator

The erasing fluid in a ink eradicator contains water, reducing agent and Soda. The erasing fluid makes the Royal Blue ink appear invisible on paper, but does not remove it entirely.

The writing ink is made the same way “Royal Blue” ink is made: with added colouring, water, preservative, a special anti drying liquid and other additives. The most important element is the choice of colour pigments. These must be immune to the eradicating ink and yet have the Royal Blue colouring.

Ingredients of “Royal Blue” ink

The “Royal Blue” ink from Pelikan is a special pigmented ink. The chemical foundation consists of „trephine methane molecules“. During the production process, this water soluble pigment does not develop clots that would later block the ink passage of a fountain pen. Active surface substances in the ink enable the mixture to glide smoothly. Further additives help the ink to dry on paper. Glycerine, Glycol or sugar help to prevent the ink from drying out resulting in crusts on the nibs point. Preservatives are also added to the ink. Because the ink is not waterproof it can be easily corrected with an ink eradicator. The ingredients of the ink were chosen baring all possible hazards and threats in mind. Even accidentally swallowing ink would not harm the average person. We do however warn against consumption as ink is not to be considered as nutrition.


The outside of the ink eradicator is plastic tube made using Polypropylene (a). Two fibre sponge tubes are placed in the plastic tube (d), one filled with the ink erasing fluid (in White) and the other with correcting ink (In Blue). A small plastic capsule in the middle of the pen prevents both of the different fluids from mixing (e).

A tip (b+c) with a lead hanging out can be found on both ends of the pen. These are in contact with the fibre tubes and draw ink through capillary suction. To prevent the ink from drying, both ends are fitted with caps.