Pens, Pens, Pens

by Deanna Chapman

My pen addiction may be nowhere near the levels of Brad Dowdy and Myke Hurley, who host The Pen Addict podcast, but I’ve been look for a good everyday, cheap pen to use. Uni-ball and Pilot seem to be king at any office supply store you go to. Last week, I decided to stop by Staples and see if they had the new Uni-ball Signo 307’s I had heard a bit about. And they did have them in their medium, 0.7 tips. I also picked up some Pilot 0.5 G–2’s. And while they’re a bit hard to exactly compare with the different tip sizes, I happened to also have the micro point (read: 0.5) Uni-ball Signo 207’s and the 0.7 of the G–2’s. Anyway, I just feel the need to get my thoughts out about this even though I’ve never written a single thing about pens before, so here goes nothing.

I’ll start with The Uni-ball Signo’s since I heard about those more recently (which I can thank Brad Dowdy for). I got a couple 2-packs of the Signo 207 micro points off of Amazon, one in black and one in blue. I immediately loved the pens and how they felt in my hand. I did notice, however, that the pens would skip once in a while, which was already way better than the cheap, free pens I would tend .to use. I also love the 0.5 size since it doesn’t make my handwriting look too messy like some thicker points will. The dry time was also great on the 0.5. Then, I saw Brad’s review on the 307’s and when he noted that they were “skip-free” pens, I was eager to see if I could find them. When I picked them up, I was a bit disappointed they were only in the medium point, but bought them anyway. The flow for the pen is fantastic and my only real complaint is that the 0.7 takes a bit longer to dry and I had accidentally smudged some words. Overall, I do agree that this pen is meant to be a slight improvement upon the 207. The ink they use to prevent fraud is also a plus considering I recently had a check stolen. Guess I’m lucky I wrote out the check with the 207.

Onto the Pilot G–2’s. It was the pen a lot of my friends would use in high school when we actually had to take notes by hand and I was always jealous when I was the one who didn’t have those pens until I found a couple laying around that someone had left behind. Instead of asking if I could buy more of the pens, I just asked if I could buy refills for the 0.7 G–2 I had found. For the longest time, I loved this pen and it was my favorite pen to use. That was true until I discovered that 0.5 Signo 207. I loved the G–2, but similar to the Signo 307, I noticed it would take a while to dry and my writing appeared to be messier with a 0.7 point rather than a 0.5. This time around, I bought the 0.5 point G–2’s in an assorted pack that includes black, blue, red, and green pens. I’m a sucker for pens that write in a color other than black, so this pack was pretty appealing (and on sale). The issues I had with the 0.7 are pretty much solved with the 0.5, although the G–2’s will still skip once in a while. And as I’ve mentioned earlier, considering I’m used to using really terrible pens that were usually promo pens from random companies, the G–2 was a big step above those and overall, I’m happy with the 0.5 G–2.

If it seems like I haven’t really come to a conclusion, it’s because I haven’t. If the Uni-ball Signo 307’s had been available in a 0.5 point, I think that would be the winner, but since they were in the 0.7, it’s essentially a tie for me. The Signo 207 micro point and the Pilot G–2 0.5 are much easier to write with in my pitch black Field Notes since I can get a thinner line with them, but when I have space to write a tad larger, I love the 307’s smooth flow. For those interested, I use my Field Notes to make my day-to-day to do lists and to keep track of things I need to check out at some point and I currently use a Roland branded Journalbooks (which I somehow ended up with for free so I have no clue which of their notebooks it actually is) to write out post ideas (most of the time) and any longer lists I’d like to keep track of. I’m still waiting for a good moment to crack open my Baron Fig Confidant, which I did in fact buy because of hearing it mentioned on The Pen Addict and on Brad Dowdy’s site by the same name (same goes for the Field Notes). My apologies if I rambled a bit, but this was something I had the sudden urge to write about.