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The Joy of Office Supplies

Survey: Favorite pen! Link me!

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( 47 comments — Leave a comment )
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peregrin8
Jan. 15th, 2008 10:21 pm (UTC)
Pilot Precise Rolling Ball but it is an ironically named pen. Contrary to this reviewer's never-leak experience, they leak every time if taken up in a plane, or driven over a high mountain pass.
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 03:49 am (UTC)
I don't like Fine or Extra Fine pens, but everyone loving this pen makes me want to try it!
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judithiscariot
Jan. 15th, 2008 10:29 pm (UTC)
any rollerball or gel pen in green will do quite nicely.
angela_la_la
Jan. 15th, 2008 10:35 pm (UTC)
I love this pen, and you will love that website. :) The Uniball Vision Elite ones write nicely, but they bleed through paper like mad (attention above poster: they are guaranteed plane safe! I just flew with one last week and it was fine). Full disclaimer: I am pretty loyal to Sanford pens because I grew up using them; my dad, uh, holds a patent on a lot of their inks. Hee!

I also like the Uniball Impact gel pens. They are nice when I am writing, say, a note or something long, but crappy when I am jotting stuff down on the fly because I hold my pen almost vertical and the ink doesn't flow well in that position.

I only use ballpoints when I have to, like when I'm writing on something glossy, or need my writing to be especially neat (since they slow me down).
peregrin8
Jan. 15th, 2008 10:42 pm (UTC)
oh good!

yeah, my poor beloved "Pilot" pens are the ONLY ones I have had leak all over whenever I made the mistake of flying with one. Every other brand seems to be fine!

Once, on a short flight, I realized too late that I had brought a Pilot, so I resolved to spend the entire flight writing, in hopes of alleviating the pressure differential. That is the one time it did not leak. Not recommended for ocean crossings...
(no subject) - snidegrrl - Jan. 16th, 2008 04:08 am (UTC) - Expand
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csue_n_moo
Jan. 15th, 2008 10:46 pm (UTC)
Pilot Precise V5 Rolling Ball. Yes they bleed, and I wish they had little finger grippies, but they last FOREVER. And so smoooooth.
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 04:14 am (UTC)
I always feel like I'm ripping the paper when I use those little rolling balls! I'll have to track one down and re-evaluate.
p_sunshine
Jan. 15th, 2008 11:00 pm (UTC)
Pilot G-2 in .05.
.07 is ok, but it's too thick for my taste. The grip on the G-2 is wonderful - no hand cramps at all.
rob_donoghue
Jan. 16th, 2008 12:48 am (UTC)
The .038's have just hit the shelves in office depot, and they are beyond fantastic.
(no subject) - snidegrrl - Jan. 16th, 2008 04:15 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - p_sunshine - Jan. 16th, 2008 03:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
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yoshimi
Jan. 15th, 2008 11:17 pm (UTC)
vision elite blue black
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 04:16 am (UTC)
micro or bold?

Edited at 2008-01-16 04:17 am (UTC)
(no subject) - yoshimi - Jan. 16th, 2008 11:51 am (UTC) - Expand
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life_unexamined
Jan. 15th, 2008 11:29 pm (UTC)
I've got a Waterman ball-point I love, but I couldn't tell you the model or anything.
lisajulie
Jan. 15th, 2008 11:54 pm (UTC)
favorite pen (for office purposes - commentary follows)
Pilot Better Retractable Fine (in blue).

This is a nice fine point pen, doesn't leak (including on airplanes), doesn't blot, and _retracts_ so no annoying cap to lose/drop/or in general be a poop. It goes through multiple copies of NCR paper (no more carbons, much, these days) just fine and doesn't clot up on paper that isn't perfectly smooth. Oh, and there's a medium point available, but, again, I do better with fine points.

I don't do well with gel pens or any pen with black ink. Just my personal trouble, though.

They are available by the box at Office Depot; here's a link:

http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/420869/Retractable-Ballpoint-Pens-Fine-Point-mm/

As for my _favorite_ (as in all-time favorite pen), it is a technical drawing pen with cartridges that come in a range of point sizes. Alas, the cartridges are _not_ refillable (I can so grumble), but the pen is a joy to use for scribbling, note-taking,

Again, available at Office Depot, it starts out as the Staedtler Mars Professional 4-Pen Set Black. This has the shell that holds the cartridge and lid and the selection of 4 point sizes. Once you figure out what point size works best for you, you can order refills from them.

Here's a link: http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/450784/Professional-Set-Black/.

snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 04:20 am (UTC)
Re: favorite pen (for office purposes - commentary follows)
Thanks! These are both pens I have no experience with so I am pleased to hear a review. :)

I keep a Parker Jotter (linked above) with my checkbook for getting through the check and imprinting on the carbon paper.
rob_donoghue
Jan. 16th, 2008 01:16 am (UTC)
For day to day use, the Pilot G-2. I like the fine nibs (.38 or .5) but it comes in .7 and 1.0 for those who like a heavier hand.

For slightly better than day to day use but not quite fancy use, the Pilot Pro is nice, but I go for a bit of a dirty trick. I get a Parker Jotter or retractable and put in the parker Gel cartridge. The result is a very serious and mundane looking pen with a fantastic clicking action and wonderful flow for 10 bucks or less.

For fancy stuff, I admit I tend towards Fountain pens. Rollerballs can be really very nice, but there's a dirty trick to them - since it's the refill that does the writing, there's no real guarantee that a $100 pen will write better than a $10 one. If it's a rollerball you want , then err on the side of cheap until you find one that you think writes well, make a note of the cartridge it uses, then just find a shell you like that uses it.

For the fountain pens themselves, I have a hard time suggesting anything other than a varsity disposable or a Lamy Safari for someone who's not sure what they want. These give an inexpensive point of entry so that you can try them for a while and decide if you like the feel. In general, I find it's worth going to a pen store (the one in White Flint is especially nice) and actually writing with them and seeing what you think.

If you decide to go heavy into the fountain pens, well, then matters get religious. I'm a huge rotring fan, but their business problems have killed many pen lines I love well. There's probably nothing flashier than the Pilot (sometime Namaki)Vanishing Point, the fountain pen retractable, but I admit I don't have a lot of love for mine.

As a general rule of thumb, for the first $150 dollars-ish of a fountain pens price, you're probably paying for the quality of the nib. Beyond the $150 mark, you're paying for the wrapper, and if you like that, great, but don't consider it a point of intimidation. You won't find a better nib than on the Lamy 2000, but it doesn't _look_ like an expensive pen, so its got its own particular cachet. For other options, Waterman will rarely let you down, and you can get a very good pen from them without totally breaking the bank.

Anyway, let me just reiterate - when you get to fountain pens, the subjectiveness goes through the roof, and the necessity of writing with it before buying is virtually a necessity.
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 04:29 am (UTC)
I am honestly, when it comes to fountain pens, so happy with a Varsity that it makes anything else pointless. But it's been years since I used those regularly (and man, did I use the crap out of them all through high school) and it feels like something from another life. So now I go Pilot G-2 (although as mentioned above I am having problems with the consistency of the colored ink that are making me angry) and for special occasions the Parker Jotter. What can I say! You have great taste in pens. I might have to try the gel refill when I get done with the ballpoint I have.

Jack's dad got me a Namiki fountain pen. But I can't find it. *sigh*
siobhan_sca
Jan. 16th, 2008 05:57 am (UTC)
uni-ball Vision Elite, bold, in black and in multi-color 8-packs, cuz I luuuurve color accents in my notes. (Esp orange. Duh.)
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 02:35 pm (UTC)
An excellent choice. I am always afraid of getting a huge pack of pens in case I get tired of them!
necrocannibal
Jan. 16th, 2008 06:10 am (UTC)
http://www.officedepot.com/textSearch.do?uniqueSearchFlag=true&Ntt=60153
Sanford® Uni-Ball® Rollerball Pens, Extra-Fine Point, 0.5 mm, Blue, Box of 12
they lead a short but brutal life due to chewing/loss, but the price point for a dozen is OK
necrocannibal
Jan. 16th, 2008 06:13 am (UTC)
(no subject) - yoshimi - Jan. 16th, 2008 02:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - snidegrrl - Jan. 16th, 2008 02:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - necrocannibal - Jan. 17th, 2008 06:08 am (UTC) - Expand
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(no subject) - necrocannibal - Jan. 19th, 2008 06:11 am (UTC) - Expand
professorbooty
Jan. 16th, 2008 08:22 am (UTC)
...
Bic Round Stic, medium point, black ink.

No, really.
puck_eater
Jan. 16th, 2008 03:20 pm (UTC)
Pilot V5 extra fine. Nothing better for both print and cursive. Looooove em.
turtleblues
Jan. 16th, 2008 03:23 pm (UTC)
Before this post and the comments above, I never thought about pens leaking on planes. Just in time! I was going to do my boss a "favor" and stick one of these nice new Pilot pens in with the stack of papers for his Africa trip!
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 04:14 pm (UTC)
I've never had a pen leak on a plane yet, but now of course I can't remember whether I usually take one.
(Deleted comment)
snidegrrl
Jan. 16th, 2008 04:14 pm (UTC)
You could just have 300 printed up with your name on them. use them as business cards! Keep 10 or so for yourself.
(Deleted comment)
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