I made my own ink for the apocalypse


Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/03/31/i-made-my-own-ink-for-the-apoc.html


This is definitely a Wonderful Thing. :purple_heart: I don’t think I have walnuts around but maybe I can find something else.


I was going with a stash of these but I like Meg’s ideas better. Keep up the good work.


Don’t come near me!


okaaay but can you use walnuts to build wifi?


Why not charcoal ink? Should be blacker than walnut husk and plentiful.


I made my own ink for the apocalypse

…from the blood of those who did not properly prepare for the apocalypse.


Semi related article I saw the other day:


Ah, so in-flight wifi will evolve us from couch potatoes to plane potatoes…


Just like Wall-E predicted!

Well, plane potatoes are just a stepping stone to space spuds but… to infinity and beyond.


I’ll have no need for ink while I have buckets o’ soup.


Iron gall ink was the standard home made ink, if memory serves. Usedfrom the 4th century to modern times.

Some iron - oak galls (some use acorns) and spirits.


What about mushrooms. If memory serves (and it might well not!) some commonly found mushrooms result in a deep, dark broth when boiled. These are wide domed varieties found growing in nutrient rich beds such as cow dung. Anyway, maybe that broth could be further refined into a nice, black ink. It may require a fixative.



I have very clear childhood memories of the walnut hulls in my grandmother’s yard (and in her basement, where she dried the walnuts before opening them) staining my hands and clothes dark brown. I’m not the least bit surprised you can make ink from them.


I kind of wish there was a book that would cover how to create all sorts of needed things after a collapse of civilization. There was a recent book that claimed to be about that: The Knowledge: How to Rebuild Civilization in the Aftermath of a Cataclysm but it really wasn’t – instead the book was mostly about how complex things are and how you couldn’t build x without a source of y which in turn needed a supply of z. So more of an argument that we shouldn’t let civilization be destroyed in the first place. Which is a worthy goal, I’ll admit, but not necessarily under our control.


It’s a bit more complicated than your instruction, but it is still the best ink for documents. Seriously, some important documents are still signed in this ink. So are some labels for type specimens in biology.

Ink is a really complicated business.


Margaret Morgan’s portrait of Sigmund Freud, Pubic hair on linen. 1993


Put’s a limit on how much one can write unless you have hirsute friends after the Apocalypse.


This one looks pretty good:
Survival Hacks: Over 200 Ways to Use Everyday Items for Wilderness Survival

I took a look at the index, and it seems to include useful items of all sorts, not just backwoodsy stuff.