Monday, May 06, 2013

Review of the Pilot Precise Rollerball Pen - Extra Fine

$21.63 on Amazon

The Pilot Precise Extra Fine is really a fine a pen! The pen is available in blue, black and red (and perhaps others).  What makes this a great pen? For years, all through high school and college I was a pencil guy and a mechanical pencil guy at that (especially in all those geology classes). I loved the precise lines you’d get with those mechanical pencils and I hated using pens because the ink would never flow evenly or it would be too sloppy looking for my own tastes.

Thus the only time I’d break down and use any sort of pen, was when I was taking a test that required a pen.

When I started working in my first office job in Maine, I was soon introduced to the world of office supplies. I was able to try just about every pen out there. From the standard Bic to the fancy roller-point pens, I tried them all. I fell back on the old mechanical pencil. I did all of my work either in pencil or on the computer. Then I actually sort of stumbled on the Pilot pens. Our secretary ordered a box of them by accident and offered them to me when she realized that she had a mistake.

At first all I managed to do was get little blue spots all over me (since it is a roller tip, if you let it either touch your skin or anything else, the ink will bleed out onto whatever), but I soon discovered that it was a great pen (minus the ink spots of course). My job involved a lot of editing (you never can edit a land use permit too many times) and this pen made quick order. A big complaint I had while I was using other pens was that the editing that you scribbled in on a page, would often cover up or smudge around with the text that you were editing. That’s why I went back to the mechanical pencils, you could write quite small and it wouldn’t smudge or cover the other text.

But, the Pilot is precise enough so that you can write quite small without smudging (the better the paper, the more precise you can write) and within a few seconds, the ink dries enough so that you do not have to worry about smudging it (except for glossy papers, where the ink takes significantly longer to dry).

The pens are not refillable, but it takes quite sometime for the ink to run out. With regular use, I’ve found that they last at least a year or so before finally kicking the bucket and running out of ink.

They will occasionally explode (the ink reservoir I am talking about – not the whole pen!) when you expose them to extreme temperatures. I have lost a few pens that way in my car – either through it being very hot or very cold.

If you’re in an office, you aren’t going to be paying for a pen, but if you want these for home (and you’re not one of those office supply cleptos) then they are about $1.25 a pen, or about $14 for a pack of 12.

I’m sure that everyone has got a favorite pen – the Pilot Precise Extra Fine pen is mine. I make sure I don’t leave home without it. I liked it so much that when I started working here in Boston, they weren’t able to get the pen, so I went out and got it myself and brought it in for me to use. A small price to pay for then pen that you will be using all the time.

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