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A friend introduced me to this line of pens made by papermate after years of using a Parker Vector Fountain pen. I found that a bit messy and I wanted to try some ball point pens other than bic ones because I find them a bit uncomfortable to write with.
These pens have a rounded barrel and I find are much smoother to write with than bic. They also don't start to stutter when the ink reserves start to get low...as in the ink will start to stutter when there is about 1mm of it left in the cartridge. You can get a pack of 50 of these for around £10 on ebay with free postage (i recently bought more after the 25 that I had bought and split with a friend finished). When I used to write a lot more, in the days of studying english language and literature when I had long essays to write I would write around 30 pages a week and these pens would last me about a month each.
Unfortunately I think papermate has stopped making these pens for some reason and instead are making their new Inkjoy range so if you want to buy these you will have to get them online.
I've literally never paid for a pen in my life. I attend a variety of conferences, talks, training courses etc that all tend to hand out free pens. Most are terrible but I don't really mind, I rarely use a pen to be honest. Recently I managed to acquire a few of these Paper Mate pens though and I must say, it's great!
I just did a quick Google of the price and it turns out you can get 10 for roughly £1. Maybe I'll start buying these pens?
Despite having no particular 'comfortable' hand hold designed into the pen barrel, they are really comfortable to hold, which is something that doesn't come easily to a lot of cheap pens.
When you are writing, the ink flows smoothly out of the pen and you really don't have to apply much pressure to get the ink down on the page. The nib is also really well designed, helping to create the smooth feel when you are writing. I'm sure that I could write for hours without experiencing any pains or discomfort. In short, it writes brilliantly.
One more point, you do not know your pen is running out of ink until it stops writing. The pen keeps writing in the same tone/colour until the very last word. This is something that I really appreciate as when you look back through your work, it looks ridiculous if your ink is slowly fading throughout.
Overall, a brilliant pen at a really good price. Who knows, I may even buy a few myself!
@ About @
I bought these pens as an alternative to Bic Biro's. We use these at work and not only do they feel better in your hand, they also have a finer point for neater handwriting at 0.8mm ballpoint. They are also quite a lot cheaper than Bic at around £5 for 50 pens. Brilliant. There are though, a few downfalls here: The pens are not see through like Bic so you have to open them to see how much ink you have left. And they don't come in a neat and tidy cut out box for storage.
@ Writing @
These pens have a slightly thinner point than regular biro's and this means your handwriting will look neater and uses less space on the page to write letters but does mean if you don't push hard enough on the pens you could end up with much thinner writing, and this makes it hard to read. These pens need a little pressure to write with but you won't be gripping the pen with white knuckle grip.
The pens don't drop a ton of ink over your page when you're writing and the ink is relatively smooth - so you don't get build ups of ink that leave smudges and blobs all over your page, making your document look very untidy. Perfect.
To hold these pens are very comfortable, but don't have a grip to hold onto. They have a ridge at the bottom where the pen indents towards the ballpoint which is something Bic does not have, and makes it more comfortable to use. There is also some give and flex in the body of the pen so you can wrap the palm of your hand around it and try to bend it. This allows for much more flexible writing over longer periods of time.
These pens have a lot more ink than Bic and many other biro's I have used. It takes about 90 A4 pages to drain one of these things completely, and sketching with them doing little doodles when you're bored does use up ink faster, but they still have some ink endurance. Very economical.
@ Overall @
These are better than Bic in many areas - Neater, cheaper, more comfortable (plastic can flex unlike Bic) and they have a better ball point. They also last longer too so you wont be buying them frequently. I can therefore say that I would recommend these pens over Bic. But the one flaw that I have with these pens: You can't see the ink when you're writing. You can open them up with a bit of force but this is inconvenient. Otherwise: Brilliant pens, highly recommended.
These pens are produced by Papermate, who manufacture a range other pens and items of stationary. They come in either black or blue ink, both of which I own. I bought them from my local stationary shop a few weeks ago as I had run out of other pens to use.
--- Appearance ---
The pens are made out of plastic and are 15cm long and 0.8cm in diameter. The colour of the plastic depends on the ink colour, i.e. blue ink = blue plastic etc. On the side of the barrel of the pen it has the Papermate logo, and the nib size, which in this case is medium.
The Pen has a simple lid that is perfectly secure when on, but can be pulled off quite easily.
--- Usage ---
At first, it takes a bit of scribbling to get the ink flowing through the nib, however once it starts flowing, I have found that it doesn't stop till it runs out. Once the pen starts working, the nib produces a fine line of solid ink. The nib works well to put just the right amount of ink down onto the paper.
I find that the ink dries reasonably quickly, however if you accidentally brush over it straight after writing then it can smudge a bit sometimes. Generally this isn't a problem, however when trying to do neat work then you have to be careful sometimes.
Once the lid is off, the pen is just a simple cylinder, with it coming to a point at the nib. There is no special hand grip or anything fancy, just the plain plastic. At first I found this a bit strange as I am normally used to writing with pens with thicker barrels, however after a few hours I had soon got used to it. Despite the basic design, the pens are quite comfortable to use over long periods of time.
Once the lid has been securely placed back on, it keeps the nib from drying up so when you come to use it again, you don't have to try and get it working first.
--- The Verdict ---
Overall these are quite comfortable pens that produce a good line of ink from the nib. They are easy to write with over long periods of time, which is good for long exams or when writing essays. I have been using the same pen for about 3 weeks now and it has not run out yet, despite getting a lot of use from it. When I bought them, they were £1.20 for a pack of 10 from my local stationary shop.
I am going to give these pens 5/5 as they are truly great pens if you are in need of a cheap pack of pens in black or blue.
Thanks for reading.
This review may also appear on my Blog and on Ciao under the same username.
It's always annoying when your pen bursts out all over your books, or your pen runs out even though you just bought that pen in a new pack. Thats what happened to me! My pens were up to so much mischief! So i bought the Papermate Stick 2020 M Pens, just for the simple fact that my local Asda were running low on stock and that was the only pens that they had left on the shelf. I didn't have a pen preferrence, i just wanted a pen that would work for a change and stop being so stubborn!
I bought the papermate pens from my local Asda for a few pounds, not exactly sure how much. You should be able to buy them from stationary stores and supermarkets, they're pretty much everywhere.
They come in a box of twenty pens, which has a clear window so you can see the pens and some writing and logos on the carboard. The pen itself is made of plastic, which looks quite sturdy. It has a pull-off lid which is easy to pull off and push back on. The lid has a little attatchment so you can attach the pen to something so you dont misplace it, rather handy! The lid also has a little design and has two tiny little love hearts. It has the name of the pen located on the body. The ink you chose corresponds with the colour of the pen. I bought black ink so my pens are black. You can also buy red, blue and possibly green. It's also really light and quite thin so you can transport it around easily. I have been using these pens for a while now and they haven't burst once, so you should be safe.
The ink gives you a very strong colour which is consecutive until the very last word! They stick to the paper well, most other biro pens seem to get caught in the paper and leave spaces or gaps in words, but this doesnt. The nib writes smoothly and effectively. Also, there is never any smudging which is great as your work looks really quite neat. They also last for ages.
It has no balance and rolls off the table onto the floor, and the attachment part sometimes can brake off and the lid becomes sharp and hazardous.
They are good pens, the best i've bought. They've served me well and that's why i'm doing this review on them. I will definetely be buying them again and i would recommend you to get a few for your drawer incase you dont already!