Uni Jetstream Prime 3 Color Ballpoint Multi Pen – 0.7 mm – Navy Body

29 05 2014
Delays in getting this post done brought to you in part by: getting a new dog

Delays in getting this post done brought to you in part by: getting a new dog

Either the Uni people listen or they came to the same logical conclusions their customers do—there should be a fancy Jetstream multi pen, there should be D1 Jetstream refills—VOILÀ! Both of these things, in the same pen. Thanks to JetPens for providing this sample.

And most of all, thank you for blue, and not pink. Pink exists now though, for those of you who are not me and love pink

And most of all, thank you for blue, and not pink. Pink exists now though, for those of you who are not me and love pink

The body is metal (type unspecified), the paint job that same enchanting metallic finish typically reserved for bumper cars. But classy. Like a Ferrari bumper car.

Exactly like a Ferrari.

Exactly like a Ferrari.

Up top, we’ve got some of the most subtle multi pen markings I’ve ever seen, coupled with what I’ll assume is a curious homage to Legos. Sure, you are a fancy businessperson now, but your heart hasn’t forgotten how crucial the carefully collected gem panel was to the city-defending death ray you had Lego Anakin Skywalker man. Or whatever it was you used your Lego gems for.

Put them in treasure chests? But then where would we keep all of Lego Queen Amidala's extra hairstyles?

Put them in treasure chests? But then where would we keep all of Lego Queen Amidala’s extra hairstyles?

The knocks are so smooth, strangely smooth if you’re used to multi pen components that are pressed inward and down to deploy. They are extremely satisfying to manipulated, and probably guaranteed to drive coworkers crazy. At least they won’t drive you crazy—they never fail (not in my experience so far, no getting stuck, no randomly undeploying, just solid mechanisms).

Looks vs. comfort. Typically this is a battle that plays out over fashionable shoes.

Looks vs. comfort. Typically this is a battle that plays out over fashionable shoes.

I do question the comfort of the all-metal body, especially in the grip area, particularly if you like to grip hard. I have to catch myself when I’m writing to readjust away from a death grip, lest I press the pen uncomfortably into the base of my thumb. Maybe adding a regular grip would do nothing to alleviate this, but an Alpha Gel Grip? What you’d lose in svelte aesthetics you’d gain in heavenly grip comfort. Maybe if I suggest it enough times, it will be reality. Alpha Gel Grip Jetstream Multipen of Fanciness. Alpha Gel Grip Jetstream Multipen of Fanciness. Looks like for now, this will remain but a dream.

You could definitely fit more in here. Oh, perhaps a secret message could go in here too?

You could definitely fit more in here. Oh, perhaps a secret message would fit?

Moreso than the Uni Jetstream 4&1 multi, these refills rattle when writing. When I pick the pen up and put it back to the page I can hear it, enough to be noticeable. Not quite enough to drive me up a wall yet, but given the choice I’m inclined to go for a quieter writing experience. Or, there are some sounds that are soothing to hear when you write, like the gliding of a nib as it lays ink on the page. Refills rattling is not one of those pleasant sounds.

I almost want to ask for more colors, but knowing the track record I've experienced with non-traditional Jetstream color inks I think I'll keep my mouth shut

I almost want to ask for more colors, but knowing the track record I’ve experienced with non-traditional Jetstream color inks I think I’ll keep my mouth shut

The performance of the refills is satisfying. The colors are rich, and above all stay off my hands. The black seems to perform best of the three colors, but that might just be my imagination. Is it as good as a regular Jetstream? Perhaps not on the most microscopic, nitpicky level, but it’s much smoother and more satisfying than any other D1 ballpoint refill I’ve tried so far. Is there a bulk discount on these refills? I have a lot of mini ballpoint pens I’d like to upgrade.

Set it down like this and no one even knows about your allegiance to the plastic brick

Set it down like this and no one even knows about your allegiance to the plastic brick

Is this the best multi pen your $45 can buy? I guess it depends on how much of your childhood was dedicated to Legos. This is the sort of pen that would make a great gift to receive, but might not necessarily be a pen body you clamor to buy for yourself. The D1 refills that this body brought to pen existence are another matter entirely, and I strongly advise you to stock up and retrofit as many little pens as possible.

Uni Jetstream Prime 3 Color Ballpoint Multi Pen – 0.7mm – Navy Blue Body at JetPens





Pilot Symmetry Ballpoint Pen 0.7mm – Mint Green Body

15 01 2014
Pilot Symmetry: coming to absolutely no stores near you. Probably.

Pilot Symmetry: coming to absolutely no stores near you. Probably.

I picked up this pen so long ago that JetPens doesn’t even carry it anymore. Oops.

I don't even think anyone carries them anymore. They were apparently discontinued in 2012

I don’t even think anyone carries them anymore. They were apparently discontinued in 2012

Looking at this pen, its name needs no explanation. The Symmetry is a perfect design execution of a basic principle. It’s like a reflecting pool in pen form. I look at this pen, and I think calm, gentle, peaceful.

The next version should have a decoder ring instead of a simple alphabet, so we can decipher all of Pilot's darkest secrets

The next version should have a decoder ring instead of a simple alphabet, so we can decipher all of Pilot’s darkest secrets

Since a clip would ruin the mirror-image aesthetic, the Symmetry has an “initial ring” around the middle that serves the dual purpose of helping identify the pen as yours (in a world where more than one person in your life has a Symmetry), and keeping the pen from rolling off and away (unless you give it a big push, but why would you do that?).

An anti-lint grip would be an excellent invention. Unfortunately, this is not such an invention.

An anti-lint grip would be an excellent invention. Unfortunately, this is not such an invention. It only looks clean because I cleaned it pre-picture

The knock end has a flexible rubber that folds down when you deploy the pen. The grip is a nice rubbery sort, excellent at collecting debris on its surface. I do appreciate that the gripping material goes all the way down onto the nose cone—it makes for a more comfortable-holding pen.

It's not a Jetstream

It’s not a Jetstream

The performance of the ballpoint falls squarely in acceptable mediocrity—I’d put it above cheap, substandard ballpoints but below the Dr. Grip (and it’s not even comparable to a supersmooth ballpoint; don’t make me laugh). It’s better for drawing; if I had to do a lot of writing with a ballpoint, this wouldn’t be my first or second choice (but it does the job of writing without complaint when needed).

If you take it apart, don't lose the little plastic letter window. It WILL fall out. Pay attention

If you take it apart, don’t lose the little plastic letter window. It WILL fall out. Pay attention

It’s definitely attractive enough to be worth having around, especially if you’re a fan of Japanese pens, but if you want one now it may be a bit of a grail quest to find one. Good luck!

Pilot Symmetry Ballpoint Pen 0.7mm – Mint Green Body information page, no longer available, at JetPens





Cross Edge Nitro Blue Rollerball Pen

24 11 2013

Rollerball? Lies. The refill says gel rolling ball.

Rollerball? Lies. The refill says gel rolling ball.

I won this sweet-looking pen in a Facebook giveaway by Goldspot Pens. Thanks to them and to the gods of random drawings for bringing unto me this pen.

Compact for travelling, full force for writing

Compact for travelling, full force for writing

The look is one of total modern sophistication. It’s got a bit much going on to be minimalist, but it’s still sleek and stylish. And this nitro blue metallic fusion resin—what a color!

A blue color, to be specific.

A blue color, to be specific.

The best part is the opening mechanism: pull apart to open, push together to close. It’s the sort of mechanism you can sit there and operate over and over. Open and close. Open and close. It’s fun to do. Might drive someone listening nearby crazy though.

It looks like it lines up so perfectly, but for me that isn't a good thing.

It looks like it lines up so perfectly, but for me that isn’t a good thing.

As I should have foreseen in the name, the Cross Edge has these edges where it slides open, and those edges align perfectly to dig in the crook of my hand. Not a problem if I hold it a little lower, but somehow that’s just not how I end up holding it. The feeling is slowly driving me a little bit crazy.

Name that planet for bonus points! Name where the picture came from for quadruple points! The points mean nothing!!!

Name that planet for bonus points! Name where the picture came from for quadruple points! The points mean nothing!!!

The refill it comes with is a gel rolling ball 0.7mm tip. The black is a rich black. Performance has been mixed so far. Pretty nice on some papers, random times where the flow nearly chokes out on other papers.

See how some of the writing is thinner? It still wrote, but it was getting questionable before it kicked back into gear

See how some of the writing is thinner? It still wrote, but it was getting questionable before it kicked back into gear

When it’s working, I like how it writes, though it does do that same annoying thing that Pentel EnerGels do: ink picks up on my hands and gets redistributed onto the page (thankfully without smudging the writing).

I thought maybe this was a stylus. Nope.

I thought maybe this was a stylus. Nope. Just…STYLE.

I like the pen, just gotta watch those hard edges.

Cross Edge Nitro Blue Rollerball Pen at Goldspot Pens






Uni-ball Signo 207 Battle – Blue Ink

19 09 2013
Do not believe the faint refrains of advertising media; bolder is NOT better

Do not believe the faint refrains of advertising media; bolder is NOT better

First, a disclaimer: I only bought the bold (1.0mm) and micro (0.5mm) Uni Signo 207 gel pens new, because I already had a regular/medium (0.7mm) and an ultra micro (0.38mm) in blue in my horde. As much as I love wasting money, I decided to cheapskate it this time and so, if any incorrect conclusions are drawn because half of these pens aren’t brand-spanking-new, I apologize. Please lodge any complaints with Uni-ball, since in spite of my undying love for their Jetstream, they have not yet seen fit to shower me with freebies.

The most straightforward, boring picture of the lot. My apologies.

The most straightforward, boring picture of the lot. My apologies.

Overall, the Signo 207s are virtually identical except for two overt things: the iconic clip—

You'd be able to recognize that clip even on your grandmother's old black-and-white notebook-sized television

You’d be able to recognize that clip even on your grandmother’s old black-and-white suitcase-sized television

And the color of the labels printed on the clip and the barrel.

 Why pretty silver for the big bad 0.7 and 1.0mm pens? Why the slightly less attractive gold for the more lovely-writing 0.38mm and 0.5mm?

Why pretty silver for the big bad 0.7 and 1.0mm pens? Why the slightly less attractive gold for the more lovely-writing 0.38mm and 0.5mm?

As far as the design goes, I’m keen on everything except the grip. It’s not a mind-bendingly beautiful look, but it doesn’t need to be. They look slick, and they make the pen cup they’re in look put together. Professional yet disposable (though they are refillable, most casual pen users will likely toss them once they’re empty). My big beef is with the grip. I do not like all the little raised ovals.

Little ovals of sheer annoyance

Little ovals of sheer annoyance

It has been well established that I simply cannot learn the ideal tripod grip. I constantly revert to my ill-advised multi-finger ergonomically-challenged grasping. The little ovals get pressed into the base of my thumb, which gets annoying over time. The Premier 207 body with its Alpha Gel grip doesn’t have this problem, but this isn’t a review of that pen.

IT IS SO AMAZING UNLESS YOU ARE COLORBLIND OR FOR SOME REASON HAVE A BLACK AND WHITE COMPUTER MONITOR

IT IS SO AMAZING UNLESS YOU ARE COLORBLIND OR FOR SOME REASON HAVE A BLACK AND WHITE COMPUTER MONITOR

I almost forgot the secret bonus difference—like the G2s, it appears the tip of each different size of Signo 207 gets its own color.

Shout out to this nose cone design! Do like. Goes well with the clip.

Shout out to this nose cone design! Do like. Goes well with the clip.

So how do they all write? Doing my best to ignore the discomfort wrought unto me by these cursed little ovals, the ink flow on all these pens seems good. No problems with skipping or the pens not writing. Looking very closely, you can see a problem with uniformity of line.

Choo-choo all aboard the almost-railroading express

Choo-choo all aboard the almost-railroading express

The ink deposits thicker on the sides, thinner in the middle. It never gets to the point of full railroading, but it worries me.

Top: biggest vs. smallest. Bottom row: ultra micro vs.  micro, micro vs. medium, medium vs. bold

Top: smallest vs. biggest. Bottom row: ultra micro vs. micro, micro vs. medium, medium vs. bold

The ultra micro is thin and crisp, but there is an occasional odd feeling at the tip—it’s rare, but it’s there. It’s not scratchy…I don’t quite know how to put it. The micro strikes the right balance that the ultra micro falls just short of—the micro isn’t as thin, but there’s no weirdness to it when writing. It’s smooth, without having a large tip (which leads to messy-looking handwriting for yours truly). The 0.7 is smooth, but we’ve crossed the threshold—my handwriting doesn’t look as nice. And the bold? Now we’re totally off the rails. This pen requires DRY TIME, especially on smooth paper. And it looks SO. MESSY. No thanks.

I like Uni Signos, but the 207 isn’t my favorite in the Signo line. It doesn’t write as nicely as other models I’ve tried. But as far as the 207 goes, the 0.5mm micro Signo is the best of the bunch.

Available basically everywhere, including but not limited to office supply stores, corporate leviathans, select gas stations, the inside coat pocket of a shady individual hawking last minute back to school deals sometime in August, and multiple sources online.





Pilot B2P Bottle to Pen Gel Ink Pen – 0.7 mm – Blue Ink

13 09 2013
Now I just need a bottle made out of recycled pens and the cycle will be complete

Now I just need a bottle made out of recycled pens and the cycle will be complete

I’ve had this pen for a while, resting first in a general all-purpose “To Review” drawer, and then, around when I moved, I promoted it to the smaller, elite “Cool-Looking Pens to Review” drawer. And there it sat in all my laziness until an inquisitive nudge made me realize I still hadn’t reviewed this pen.

Warning: do not fill B2P with water. Results will not be satisfactory.

Warning: do not fill B2P with water. Results will not be satisfactory.

I like the look of it. The nigh-gimmicky plastic-bottle-reproduction body works for me, right down to the bottle label. It’s cute, it’s clever. I appreciate the feel-goodery of a product containing 89% recycled content. This is an all-around improvement over the standard G2.

Needs a tiny nutrition facts table.

Needs a tiny nutrition facts table.

But I find the hard plastic body uncomfortable to write with for any significant stretch. If you write like a normal human being, with a tripod grip, it’s likely this won’t be such a problem for you. But if you write like me, with the ungainly grip of a ridge-browed troglodyte, you may find this pen uncomfortable.

I wonder if there's a significant difference in blue vs. black Pilot G2 ink performance. Maybe my problem all along is I've been using black, when the acceptably mediocre champion is blue.

I wonder if there’s a significant difference in blue vs. black Pilot G2 ink performance. Maybe my problem all along is I’ve been using black, when the acceptably mediocre champion is blue.

Quality control, in my experience with the Pilot G2 refills, is the pen equivalent of playing Russian Roulette with a gun that’s 80% loaded full of writing-killing, poor performance bullets. Maybe I’m just a particularly unlucky punk. But in this pen-stance, the G2 refill has thus far written without any major hair-pulling problems. Nothing phenomenal, nothing atrocious. In keeping with the Be Green branding, the pen is easily refillable with any size or color G2 refill you happen to fancy (I would suggest the 0.38mm refill, as it is the only G2 that has not consistently brought me despair).

The multi-packs should come in a reused plastic water bottle, full of B2Ps. Genius. Pilot, you may now shower me with your moneydollars for this marketing gold.

The multi-packs should come in a reused plastic water bottle, full of B2Ps. Genius. Pilot, you may now shower me with your moneydollars for this marketing gold.

It may not be entirely comfortable for me, but I like the direction this B2P takes the G2. It’s a thoughtful design, both aesthetically and environmentally.

You can find these pens in box stores, at JetPens, and on Amazon.





OfficeMax Private Brand Writing Products – Review & GIVEAWAY!

27 07 2013
It's impressively difficult to accurately capture the neon vibrancy of those highlighters. Scans didn't work, and even pictures don't do it justice

It’s impressively difficult to accurately capture the neon vibrancy of those highlighters. Scans didn’t work, and even pictures don’t do it justice

A massive review, what madness! OfficeMax approached me to do a review of some of their new private brand products—they’re expanding their offerings, and sent me the trifecta of office supply supply basics to take for a spin. Thank you to OfficeMax for the free samples! We’ve got here the OfficeMax Retractable Gel Pens, Mechanical Pencils with Grip, and Pen Style Highlighters.

Blister pack of 0.7mm retractable gel pens comes with 2 black, 1 red, 1 blue, I just didn't photograph the redundant items

Blister pack of 0.7mm retractable gel pens comes with 2 black, 1 red, 1 blue, I just didn’t photograph the redundant items

I’ll start with the gel pens, since they’re my favorite of the lot. The design is clearly in the same vein as other basic level gel pens—simple, similar, and safely within that particular standard.

And as per usual, the G2 craps out. Ladies and gentlemen, can there be a pen worse for your office than the Pilot G2?

And as per usual, the G2 craps out. Ladies and gentlemen, can there be a pen worse for your office than the Pilot G2?

The ink colors are intense. I’d like to see more colors roll out with equal vibrancy, just as I’d like to see 0.5mm and perhaps even—dare I dream?—something like 0.38mm tip size. The ink flows well; no skipping or start-up problems. And though there hasn’t been blobbing, the strong ink flow is leading to some thicker lines in some of the curves. This ink also isn’t quick drying. Lefties beware. I can easily see this pen replacing Pilot’s G2 in an office (and very much hope any misguided offices that still use the G2 as their basic supply stock STOP DOING THAT), but for me the slow dry time is probably going to keep this pen out of my regular personal rotation.

Box comes with 12 assorted color #2 mechanical pencils, 0.7mm, top advancing

Box comes with 12 assorted color #2 mechanical pencils, 0.7mm, top advancing

These are the kind of mechanical pencils just made for giveaways. They aren’t fancy, but the matching eraser and grip is just the sort of touch that endears you to a freebie. I could see businesses ordering mass quantities of this pencil, getting their own company logo added on it, and giving them out to promote their company. I could see parents getting a couple boxes and throwing one of these pencils in a color-themed party favor. They are perfectly reasonable pencils (we all know that the Uni Kuru Toga has pretty much ended all competition in the pencil area, and everything else is just vying for lower tiers; this is obviously no Kuru Toga). The lead sleeve retracts, the better to protect it when thrown in a bag. The lead is held firmly in place when in use. The grip is very grippy, though it smells remarkably like a bag of cheap balloons.

Pen style chisel-tip highlighters come in a pack of 10: 3 yellow, 2 each of orange and pink, and 1 each of green, blue, and purple

Pen style chisel-tip highlighters come in a pack of 10: 3 yellow, 2 each of orange and pink, and 1 each of green, blue, and purple

There’s really not much I know to say about highlighters. Do they highlight? Yes. We’re done. The neon colors pop, in a way my mere pictures cannot capture, and you can read text beneath all the colors. The spring loaded cap reminds me of the Pilot Preppy cap, though I worry that, like the Preppy, the cap may be prone to cracking. Time will tell. The highlighter lays down a solid, juicy line with no skipping—though there is some concern with the dry time needed for such a wet line. Don’t use it to highlight in a glossy textbook unless you want to risk a mess.

Not pictured: 1 gel pen, 4 highlighters, and about 7 additional pencils.

Not pictured: 1 gel pen, 4 highlighters, and about 7 additional pencils.

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THE GIVEAWAY RULES!

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Now for the part you’ve been looking forward to: the giveaway! OfficeMax is generously providing a sample package (set of retractable gel pens, pen style highlighters, and mechanical pencils with grip) directly to one lucky reader here. Your rules as follows:

  1. To enter, just leave one comment on this post explaining why you’re excited to try OfficeMax’s new private brand writing products—any time between now and Monday, August 12th 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time. Sadly, this contest is only open to U.S. residents.
  2. One winner will be picked at random from the comments section of this post. Only one comment per person! Comments in excess of one shall be deleted. The comments will be numbered in the order they are received, i.e. the first comment is #1, the second #2, and so on. Because my blog doesn’t seem to number the comments on its own yet, and I STILL don’t have time/the willpower to fix it, I will probably just hand-number all the entries in Photoshop like I did here because this is the kind of solution that sane people come up with. The Random Integer Generator at random.org will be used to pick the number of the winner.
  3. I’ll post the contest winner on Tuesday, August 13th. Winners will have one week to email me. There’s a link to my email at the top of the right sidebar. I’ll forward your info to OfficeMax so they can send you your pens, pencils, and highlighters!

Good luck, and thanks again to OfficeMax!

Disclaimer: I received the OfficeMax products mentioned in this post from OfficeMax in order to facilitate my review. The items featured in this giveaway are also provided by OfficeMax and will be sent to the winner directly. Opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own. I have not been compensated for this post in any other way.

 





Zebra Minna Mini Ballpoint Pen with Japanese Print – 0.7 mm – Wine Red Cap

29 06 2013
I have mixed emotions about this pen

I have mixed emotions about this pen

This is a story about a pen so small that I actually lost the first one I bought (you’re welcome, cleaning people in random motel in Asheville), but so adorable that I bought another one anyway (but not so cost-effective that that was necessarily a good idea).

The American penny was just too big. Like taking pictures of the coin more than the pen.

The American penny was just too big. Like taking pictures of the coin more than the pen.

I originally owned the silver one, but it was too much of an indignity to buy the exact same thing again, so I went with the “wine red” cap on repurchase (though I can’t say that the wine I drink ever looks this particular shade of red. I guess “fruit punch red” just doesn’t have the same classy ring to it). This pen is small. Your mind will not comprehend how small it is unless you’re holding it. You see it here, next to the 1 euro-cent, or on JetPens, next to an American quarter, and you THINK you have an idea of how small it is. You’re wrong. It’s smaller than that. You could probably swallow this pen whole and not even manage to choke on it (it’ll probably get stuck somewhere past your stomach though, so, maybe don’t do that).

You also may not realize how small one of these 1 euro cent coins is. I believe the mathematical size is referred to as "unbelievably adorable" sized.

You also may not realize how small one of these 1 euro cent coins is. I believe the mathematical size is referred to as “unbelievably adorable” sized.

It’s a lovely pen to look at. Slim, minimal, elegant, and well made (at its price, it had BETTER be well made). The metal cap is smooth, with a pearlescent sort of sparkle-sheen to it, and posts perfectly. The little Japanese print provides just the right amount of accent. It’s held up well so far, being tossed in at the bottom of a bag, which makes me hopeful for its potential as an everyday carry.

I think it is a universal requirement of standard ballpoints to have some crusty ink crud visible when I take its picture

I think it is a universal requirement of standard ballpoints to have some crusty ink crud visible when I take its picture

It writes. Not a particularly enjoyable experience for me, writing for the duration of the writing sample; I found the lovely silver accents around the print to be a bit of a pain in the base of my thumb, and the writing felt a bit cramped with such a small and slender barrel. But it does what I would need it to do, which would be write in a moment of necessity. The smaller your hands, the more you would probably like writing with this pen. The refill itself, a Zebra 4C-0.7 ballpoint pen refill, is nothing spectacular.

IT'S LIKE THEY'RE SWIMMING IN WATER BEFORE YOUR VERY EYES

IT’S LIKE THEY’RE SWIMMING IN WATER BEFORE YOUR VERY EYES

At time of writing, this wee little pen is only a dollar seventy-five shy of a full ten dollars, which seems like an awful lot of money to drop on something so little that isn’t a fountain pen. Spending absurd amounts of money on fountain pens is somehow more psychologically justifiable. It’s a pretty little pen, but if I lose it again, I probably won’t be buying a third.

Zebra Minna Mini Ballpoint Pen with Japanese Print – 0.7mm – Wine Red Cap at JetPens





Uni-ball Signo 207 BLX Retractable Gel Ink Pen – 0.7 mm – 4 of 5 Colors

28 05 2013
No brown-black, sorry!

No brown-black, sorry!

When you’ve got a good pen in your lineup, it’s important to keep the body fresh and modern (or at least keep it from being the pen design equivalent of padded shoulders (or fetid swamp water)). Or, more accurately, it’s important to me, maybe you, and probably absolutely no one else in the general market.

Any scrap of novelty in standard American pens is exciting to me.

Any scrap of novelty in standard American pens is exciting to me.

As soon as I saw these babies at my local office supply store, I snatched them up. I didn’t see brown-black, but red-black, green-black, blue-black, and purple-black were all there. Compared to the regular Signo 207, there are only a few major differences, biggest of all being the BLX clip is plastic instead of metal (presumably so it could be a stealthy matte black).

Yeah, that's definitely cool enough to be worth sacrificing structural integrity.

Yeah, that’s definitely cool enough to be worth sacrificing structural integrity.

I just find plastic clips inherently suspect, as I’m certain all they’re there for is to one day break off. And why isn’t the nose cone the same matte black? Why is it glossy black? Why isn’t everything matte black? Who decides these things?

The brooding Batmanesque colors of the Signo line

The brooding Batmanesque colors of the Signo line

I do like the body; no longer a translucent barrel, the BLX features a color fade to black that isn’t too tacky. The grip is the same as the standard Signo 207.

Now, when can we expect 0.5mm? 0.38mm? Approximately never?

Now, when can we expect 0.5mm? 0.38mm? Approximately never?

One of my biggest problems I’ve had happen when writing samples for reviews with some brands of gel pens is that the dry ink will somehow come off the page onto my hand and get redistributed back on the page. Pentel’s EnerGel line is a particular offender. I didn’t have any of that happen on this writing sample with the Signo 207. The writing is smooth and the colors are gorgeous (this purple-black is my new best friend). The ink is also allegedly resistant to check washing and other such grandiose claims you can find printed on the back of a standard blister pack. Not yet being of criminal mind, I’m not sure how one goes about attempting to wash checks (and I’m pretty sure that’s one of those google searches that gets you put on a watch list), so I can neither confirm nor deny this claim of the ink’s properties in that regard.

And they are technically refillable! (I’m not sure where one necessarily gets such refills though.) The refill size is comparable to the Jetstream retractable or the Zebra Sarasa retractable refills, so you could, for example, put this refill in the body of the Zebra Airfit Jell or the Jetstream Alpha Gel Grip, and have a fantastic hybrid fancy body Signo BLX.

You can find these pens in most big box stores, at my local office supply store (Office Supplies and More), and JetPens also carries them.





Zebra Airfit LT Ballpoint Pen with Push Grip – 0.7 mm – Pearl Green Body – Black Ink

4 08 2012

One day I will collect all my best doodling ballpoint pens in one place and draw myself into oblivion

Ten points to Zebra, for making a “feminine” version of an already gender-ambiguous pen, without offending the entire human race. Many thanks to JetPens for providing this sample!

Before I froth and rave about its predecessor, let’s evaluate the Airfit LT on its own merits

It’s a standard-sized, lightweight plastic body, simplicity done well. You’ve got 3 colors, nicely balanced—mostly pearlescent mint green, with main accents translucent-clear, and just the right amount of silver shine.

It sparkles! Like fairy dust magic! …or vampires, apparently. I know when I look at sparkles, the first thing I think of is the blood-sucking undead.

I wasn’t expecting a ballpoint, for whatever reason (the reason being that I didn’t pay enough attention when reading the product description). I’m curious why, if the original Zebra Airfit is a beefed-up version of the Sarasa Push Clip, they wouldn’t outfit the ballpoint version of the Airfit with a Surari refill.

Not pictured: the Surari refill that SHOULD be the standard for the Airfit LT

It makes a difference. While this pen is decent for doodling, for writing I’m not thrilled. Surari smoothness in this pen body would be thrilling, as would having a deluxe version of the Surari (comparable to the Jetstream, which has quite the snazzy deluxe version). It’s a good pen, but it could be better.

AIRFIT BATTLE! Featuring adorable cell phone charm by Chiou!

A quick rundown of their differences: the Airfit LT is obviously thinner, and slightly shorter, with a smaller grip section. The big advantage in the LT’s design: much smoother transition between the grip and the nose cone. Very well done, and undoubtedly superior to the abrupt stop between those elements on the original Airfit. Now, what the LT gets wrong:

Pretty much this entire area here

I’m biased. I’m a HUGE fan of the clip on the Zebra Sarasa Push Clip. Really disappointed it didn’t put in an appearance on a pen of the same size. I’m willing to sacrifice some of the minimalist appeal for a clip that functional. Especially if it has accommodations for an adorable little cell phone charm.

As far as refills go, I have been unable to get the Sarasa Push Clip, Uni Signo & Jetstream multipen refills, and a handful of assorted other refills to fit, though I have not yet had a chance to try the Surari refills I have. Will have to update that later today.

While it’s a good pen, I still prefer the original Zebra Airfit (which fits Sarasa Push Clip refills and Jetstream RT refills). But I’m a sucker for that clip. If you hate the Push Clip’s clip, and want that neato airfit grip without the oversized barrel, then this is probably the pen you’ve been looking for!

Zebra Airfit LT Ballpoint Pen with Push Grip – 0.7 mm – Pearl Green Body – Black Ink at JetPens








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