Guide to Affordable Pens
A follower asked me about affordable pens and I figured it would be easier to make a post about it, so here you go:
1. Pilot G-2 - A click-pen with nice, even inkflow and doesn’t bleed through pages. This pen is refillable and comes in 0.5 mm, 0.7 mm, and 1.0 mm, and a multitude of different colors. While this pen is favorited amongst many buyers, a problem a lot of them often run into is that the ink is splotchy and erratic. About $1.37 each.
2. Uni-Ball Signo DX - Also a click-pen with even inkflow and does not bleed through. While people have said that the Pilot G-2 is the best gel pen, others who have used the Uni-Ball Signo DX argue that they are far inferior to the latter. This pen comes in 0.28 mm, 0.38 mm, and 0.5 mm. About $2.50 each.
3. Muji Gel Ink Ballpoint Pen - This pen comes in a wide variety of colors and the sizes 0.38 mm, 0.5 mm, and 0.7 mm for only four colors. It writes smoothly and has a fine tip. While the ink does not build up and splotch, there have been complaints about the ink refusing to work after some use. About $2.00 each.
4. Zebra Sarasa Push Clip - This pen is comfortable to use and hold, but is not as smooth as the Hi-Tec C pens. However, what it lacks in smoothness it makes up for with the fact that it does not blob or smear, most likely due to the 0.3 mm tip it comes with, along with a huge variety of colors. About $2.20 each.
*Gel pens are technically a roller ball pen variant that has thicker ink, so if you’re going for a pen that doesn’t bleed through, these would be ideal.
Roller Ball Pens
1. Hi-Tec C - This is one of my favorite roller ball pens because of the famous fine point and rich ink. It comes in a wide variety of colors and the sizes vary from 0.3 mm, 0.4 mm, and 0.5 mm. One issue with this pen, however, is that the ink occasionally splotches over long use and starts skipping, as in, if you are writing a word it will stop producing ink in the middle of writing. About $3.30 each.
2. Morning Glory - This pen has quite a distinctive design and the ink itself does not bleed through as the Hi-Tec C often does. It also does not skip, splotch, or streak, writes smoothly, and dries quickly. The stroke is easy to control and you do not need to press too hard while writing. The lines are very clean for a liquid ink pen. It is available in 13 colors and 0.38 mm. About $2.00 each.
3. Zebra R-301 - This pen only comes in 0.7 mm, and blue and black ink, but it writes dark and bold. It is light and clean, so writing for a long time is not a problem, but the plastic grip is uncomfortable. It feels great to write with and the ink is plentiful, and dries quickly. Some have made complaints that this pen’s cap rattles too much whilst writing and it feathers on most types of papers. About $3.99 each.
4. Uni-ball Jetstream Finepoint Pen - Does not skip, smudge, feather, splotch, or bleed, and has an easy-to-hold grip and available in the generic red, blue, and black. Also, this pen offers great precision for those who write small, is comfortable to hold, and very reliable as it does not seem to dry out. It is only available in 0.7 mm. About $3.00 each.
1. Uni-ball Jetstream - This pen glides effortlessly across paper and produces even inkflow which dries quickly (even though ballpoint pens usually get stuck on the page or drags friction across the paper) so that you can write with your regular writing pressure and will be fine. This pen comes in 0.38 mm, 0.5 mm, 0.7 mm, and 1.0 mm. About $2.50 each.
2. Zebra Surari Emulsion Ink Pen - This is a ballpoint pen but it produces gel ink, so I was ambiguous about where to put it. It has thin lines, smooth inkflow, and oil-based ink, comes in 0.5 mm and 0.7 mm, and many different colors. A reviewed tested this pen against others when coming in contact with water, ethanol (hand sanitizer), and rubbing alcohol, and reported that this worked best in adversity compared to two other pens. About $1.65 each.
3. Pentel Vicuna Super Smooth Ballpoint Pen - This pen comes with pitch-black ink and writes super smooth (as the name suggests), clean, and dark. It comes in black, blue, and red, and 0.7 mm. About $3.43 each.
4. BIC Cristal Soft - I’m just going to be upfront about it and say that I hate BIC’s ballpoint pens because the ink does not come out evenly and I usually have to press down hard to get it out, but one day I had to pleasure of picking up a BIC Cristal Soft that somebody had left at my workplace and it wrote surprisingly smoothly and easily. It’s light and the ink doesn’t build up or splotch, and has a hexagonal barrel for comfortable handling. This comes in red, black, and blue, and 1.2 mm and 0.45 mm. About $0.50 each.
1. Staedtler Pigment Liner 308 - I just purchased one of these pens myself and was far more satisfied with it than I was with the famous Staedtler Triplus Fineliner 334. It is advertised to be good for both writing and drawing, but I do not draw so I really wouldn’t know for that aspect. However, the ink comes out evenly and easily, and I was impressed with the multitude of different sizes it comes in: 0.3 mm - 2 mm, 0.05 mm, 1.20 mm, 0.90 mm, 0.10 mm, 0.20 mm, 0.30 mm, 0.40 mm, 0.50 mm, 0.60 mm, and 0.70 mm. About $3.30 each.
2. Staedtler Triplus Fineliner 334 - We all know this one, and its trademark ergonomic triangular barrel. While the previous liner only comes in black, this one comes in up to 36 different colors but only one size of 0.3 mm. It is adored by the studyblr community for its dry-safe guarantee and water-based ink. However, I’ve bought much too many sets of these and I can let you know firsthand that after long use the tip will begin to push into the metal and become unable to write. About $1.30 each.
3. Stabilo Point 88 - Another studyblr favorite, this pen also uses water-based ink and does not bleed through the pages, is easy to hold due to its lightweightedness, and produces clean, sharp lines. In contrast to the Staedtler Triplus Fineliner 334, this pen is shaped hexagonally. This is available in 30 different colors and 0.4 mm. About $0.80 each.
4. Sharpie Pen - I love this pen. I used to carry this pen around with me, one in each pocket, until I tragically washed my jacket with the pens still in and just never got around to purchasing them again because of lack of money. This pen does not bleed through the pages or blotch, and is smooth with a very fine point. It does not smear and it comes in many different colors, although I personally just prefer black. About $2.00 each.