Back in September of 2011, I hit up the Dallas Pen Show for a whopping two hours. I would’ve spent a lot more time there if it weren’t for the fact that it was (and will be) the same weekend as FenCon -which takes over my life (in a good way). However, in my limited time at the Dallas Pen Show, I ran across a dealer who had a Monteverde One Touch ball point retractable pen (in the pretty red to black speckled variegated color scheme.
I paid the full $30 retail value for the one from his display bag because we…I…wanted to try it out and it was there. And, as I’ve said before…I’m a practical “collector” I don’t care about “mint in box”. Heck, I don’t care about BOX. If I acquire a pen, I’m gonna use it.
It’s taken this long to talk about the Monteverde One Touch because this pen lives with my convention gear. In fact, it lives in the pen loop of our Grichels receipt book. I don’t think about this pen until I’m using it to write a receipt – because that’s why I bought it. We use SquareUP to take credit cards at conventions, and I wanted a multi-purpose pen like the One Touch that would work on the touch screen for those who didn’t want to sign with their finger. I plan on using it more when I can afford an iPad…
The Monteverde One Touch WORKS. It just…works. The stylus is built into the clicking part of the retractable mechanism, so you can feel the “squishy” part of the stylus. The ball point is a standard black ink, medium (but not the new extra thick “medium” of some companies) point in a Parker Style. The refill style is kinda important to me because it means the One Touch can be converted to different inks – like gel and “Liquid Ink” (which is a converter that Monteverde has). The ink that comes with the pen is dark, smooth, and not overly smeary. This one we’ll leave as a ball point because that’s the ink that works best for two-part receipts.
Yes, it’s pricy, but for a multi-purpose pen that’s both gorgeous, works, and is pretty comfortable to write with? It’s worth it. And it is comfortable. It’s just over 5.25″ long both clicked and retracted – which is long enough to be comfortable for me. The barrel is smooth metal with subtle threads for refills that don’t get in the way. It’s got a nice diameter that doesn’t tire the hand quickly. It’s a really good, solid, ball point pen.
To the grading!
1. How does it write? – 1 – for a ball point pen, it’s nice. The retractable mechanism is smooth. The ink is also smooth, dark, and doesn’ t smear. It’s a solid ball point pen.
2. Grip and feel – 1 – the grip has nothing to irritate the fingers. It also has nothing to help GRIP with the fingers. The threading for the refills doesn’t protrude to irritate. The metal barrel is cool and slick (though that might be a detriment to some), and the diameter is comfortable to my hand.
3. Material – 1 – the pen has a painted metal barrel, a functional stylus in the clicker end, and a good quality ink refill with options. There’s not much more to say here.
4. Overall Design – 0.5 – I will knock this down a bit (though it’s darned close to a “1″. The thing about the stylus being in the clicker end (though, really, where else is it going?) does make activate the retraction mechanism when pressure is put on the stylus. If the person using the stylus has a heavy hand, ink could get on you. Being metal, the barrel will nick after a while with heavy use or being tossed in purse, which may mar the pretty finishes.
5. Price Point – 0.5 – yeah, I have to do this too. These pens run $30. That’s a chunk of change for people for a ball point pen, even with the stylus being part of it. For me it was worth having the multifunction so as not to lose either the pen or the stylus, but it will be a factor. Oh, and you have to search for them. Either order online or find them in a fine pen store or case. They’re not always visible in stores.