In my experience with the new generation of “erasable” pens, the Pilot FriXion Point (and the Pilot FriXion Color-Pencil-Like erasable gel pens, but that’s another review) is the first pen I tried. It was so impressive and so much fun, I spent several lunch breaks writing things out, holding the paper above a lighter to erase everything, then throwing the paper in the freezer to show my coworkers the resurrected writings later.
Much like the Uni Fanthom, the Pilot FriXion Point is a lightweight pen made almost entirely of plastic. The design on the Japanese FriXion Points I ordered from JetPens has an enjoyable simplicity and classiness; the Pilot FriXion Point available in American stores is inexplicably covered in tribal tattoos that are vaguely reminiscent of flames. I ask again: Pilot, why do you hate America?
There is a design flaw that all models share: the eraser gets tucked securely away beneath the posted cap, protecting you from ever using it effectively while writing without taking off the cap and risking it falling off tables / into the clutches of wily domesticated animals.
The eraser is such a BIG FREAKING DEAL, you would think it would have been impossible for this design to make it to production. I have a hard time imagining that no one at any point in the design process expressed concern about the position of the eraser. What was the reasoning that let this fly out? No one will notice? No one will want to erase anyway? No one will want to use the eraser when they can use STOVES AND FIRE to erase?
Pilot has addressed this issue in other FriXion models, but would it really be so hard to fix this on the FriXion point as well? Just put the button with the tip size written on it where the eraser currently is, and vice-versa. Problem solved.
Aside from achieving the stupidest position for an eraser, the Pilot FriXion Point gets top marks in all other categories. It writes smooth, both fast and slow, has consistent and rich ink, and does what it claims to do—erase. Just don’t be afraid of erasing with it; erase with vigor! You have to, to generate the heat needed to set off the chemical reaction that “erases” the ink. You don’t need to erase like you’re trying to rip the page off, mind you, but you’re also not trying to erase a pencil mark off a butterfly’s wing.
While this isn’t my favorite FriXion model due to the much-stressed design issue, it does have the highly desirable trait of being easily available in physical big-box stores. I’ve even seen them in the likes of Rite Aid and CVS! The eraser thing is annoying, but you don’t need that particular eraser; anything that will generate friction and thus, heat, will work. You can even use your finger (though I don’t recommend it; it kind of hurts). Or leave your note on top of the toaster oven while making breakfast. Or take your note outside in Texas.
Like I said, these are available all over the place, or, at least the 0.5mm FriXion Point and its color variants are available all over the place. If the place sells pens, there’s a good chance you can find the 0.5mm tattooed FriXion Point there. But for the 0.4mm goodness: