Uni-ball Jetstream Color Series Ballpoint Pens – 0.5mm – Light Blue & Purple

17 05 2012

Angels are weeping right now, Uni-ball, and they are not tears of joy.

I’m not particularly subtle when it comes to my feelings about the Jetstream line of pens. I constantly shoehorn in mentions of them. I rank them somewhere between a writing utensil and a god (perhaps on par with Hercules, or something that writes in a combination of butter and black gold). I hold the Jetstream to a high standard, because that’s what the Jetstream delivers. That said, I’m not sure these are Jetstream pens.

They are perhaps wolves in pens’ clothing

They look like Jetstream pens. Exactly like the black 0.5mm Jetsteam I so dearly love—that same slick and sweeping modern design, attractively and accurately color-coded to match the ink inside.

The purple seems to be coming out too dark in several of these pictures. This is a more accurate representation of what this purple looks like. Pretty close to what Wikipedia terms “Mardi Gras” purple

Really spot-on with the color. You have no idea how much I appreciate that.

This is shattering every fundamental truth I ever knew about the universe, Uni-ball. The sky is blue, the earth orbits around the sun, Pilot G2s are generally pretty terrible, and the Jetstream writes like an oil-based miracle. THAT IS THE WAY THE WORLD IS SUPPOSED TO WORK

Let’s not kid ourselves—even on Clairefontaine paper there, this ink performance isn’t up to snuff. The tip is an absolute mess, and I think that’s where all the problems are coming from.


Picture it: the ink gums up at the tip, leading to blobs. Blobs that don’t get transferred to the page lead to slight, jerky resistance as they get worked around the surface of the ballpoint, and all this inconsistency and uneven distribution of ink leads to the occasional ghosting.

These two are up to no good

It wants to be smooth, really it does. But something about the formulation for colorful inks is having this terrible side effect. This is a ballpoint pen. Maintenance is not part of the repertoire for a ballpoint pen this inexpensive. I shouldn’t have to be cleaning off the tip of a ballpoint pen. I’d also like to note that in handwriting this post, the blue pen just started having the pen equivalent of agonal breathing, and I had to switch back to the purple.

I thought maybe using bottom-barrel paper might bring out some kind of desperate last-minute hat-trick-miracle, but no.

What is going on here, Uni-ball? Whatever it is, it’s not okay, and should NOT be called a Jetstream.

Take those nametags off right now, you rank impostors!

You can either find a way to fix this ink, or don’t dare call this thing a Jetstream. Your choice.


So, where do we go from here, my fellow penficionados? I suggest stockpiling canned goods, and buy up more REAL Jetstreams.

Real Jetstream Ballpoint Pens at JetPens

But it’s your money, you can do whatever you want.
Uni-ball Jetstream Color Series Ballpoint Pen – 0.5 mm – Light Blue Body – Light Blue Ink at JetPens
Uni-ball Jetstream Color Series Ballpoint Pen – 0.5 mm – Purple Body – Purple Ink at JetPens

P.S. Many thanks to JetPens for providing these sample pens free of charge!




10 responses

17 05 2012

It’s officially a G2 world now. All your JetStreams are belong to us. Also you can get Uni Signo .38 at Office Max now.

17 05 2012
Azizah A. (@GourmetPens)

I am appalled. I never expected this insanity!!!! Noooo!!! They held so much potential…

18 05 2012
Christine Witt (Brush Dance)

Bummmmmer. I cannot tolerate globs of ink around the ballpoint tip. This is a real shame.

21 05 2012
Monday Morning Review Round-up | The European Paper Company

[…] No Pen Intended: Sailor A.S. Manhattaner’s NY Artists Guild Fountain Pen & Uni-ball Jetstream Color Series Ballpoint  […]

12 11 2012

Glad to have you confirm my experience with the jetstream purple ink, but kind of sad too – i was really looking forward to a multicolor jetstream world. Thanks for reviewing pens. I obsess over writing instruments for some reason. I’ll have to remember to check your blog before my next purchase.

6 02 2014
Jetstream BLX 1.0mm – Green Black, Blue Black, and Purple Black | No Pen Intended

[…] I first saw the Jetstream BLX in a big box store, on a special Uni-ball endcap display. I immediately texted my local pen store (“I saw Uni-ball Jetstream BLX colors in an evil boxstore; when r u getting them so I can buy?”) and brought another Jetstream into my life. Would it be like the glorious Jetstream standard, or would it be a crushing disappointment like the newer color series? […]

15 04 2014
Uni Jetstream 4&1 4 Color Ballpoint Multi Pen and Pencil – Purple | No Pen Intended

[…] had some problems recently with certain Jetstream color models not living up to the Jetstream name—consider this pen redemption. All colors perform smooth and vibrant, as […]

4 08 2014
Cartridge Replacement Blog

Considering A Economy Ballpoint Stick Oilbased Pen Black Ink

[…] y terrible, and the Jetstream writes like an oil-based miracle. THAT IS THE WAY […]

12 11 2014
Schneider Assortment – Top Quality German Pens | No Pen Intended

[…] XB and F; XB is undeniably smoother, but the F is still pretty slick. We must ask, as seen with the Jetstream Color, do alternate ink colors impact performance? For the purple Slider Memo XB, a resounding […]

15 11 2016

It’s no wonder I haven’t heard much about colored Jetstream pens.

Also, I thoroughly enjoy your writing style.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: