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[Pen/Pencil Review] The Avant Pro SilkScribe Gel Pen 1.0mm Black Ink

Posted by reudaly on January 7, 2013 in Review, writing instruments |

I took these at lunch on my iPhone, because apparently the photos are on the home computer.

I took these at lunch on my iPhone, because apparently the photos are on the home computer.

Before Christmas I talked about the Staples Avant pens. Staples has a whole line of these that were on sale. I picked up a couple of them. I talked about the retractable ones. Now I’m going to talk about the Avant Pro SilkScribe with 1.0mm black ink.
The SilkScribe is a capped stainless steel pen that looks pretty decent for the price point. It’s got a black plastic clip and cap top with Avant Pro stamped into the clip. The pen is 5.25” capped and 6” posted, which gives it a good length. It has a back rubber grip for some ergonomic comfort. The body is brushed stainless steel for a satin finish. The cap is wider than the body of the pen, so there’s a flair at the seal that has a shining stainless accent.
The problems are – that flair. Though it’s back pretty far, it can still dig in during long use, especially if you shift your grip around, like me. But overall it’s pretty comfortable. The pen comes with a 1.0mm ink insert. Now if you read this blog at all you know my pretty low opinion of 1.0mm points. I find them bulky and unwieldy – to be kind – and that’s with ball point. I loathe it in gel ink – why? Because all gel ink has a smear factor anyway adding a 1.0mm point magnifies that smear factor exponentially – if you’re lefty, this is a deal breaker.

Fortunately the Avant Series comes with “universal” refills for all their pens in either red, blue, or black – and in 1.0mm and 0.5mm (Why just these two sizes? I have no idea. I guess they figure there’s enough 0.7mm?). I kept the 1.0mm in just long enough for the writing sample then tossed it for a 0.5mm refill – now I’m a happy, happy camper with this pen.

The Numbers…
1. How does it work?1 It’s decent. It has a lot of smearing in the given 1.0mm but the action is smooth and the ink rich. It is refillable. So that’s a plus.
2. Grip and feel0.5 – It’s a got a decent rubber grip – and a good diameter. It’s long enough to be comfortable – has potential for digging with the flair ridge.
3. Material1 It’s an inexpensive, stainless steel pen. The barrel will last forever. The clip may be an issue but it seems sturdy, and you’ll have to go some to break it. I think, for the price, it’s a darned good quality.
4. Overall Design0.5 – It’s going to be a love it or hate it pen. That’s what it comes down to. I find it to be a good pen – once I changed out the ink – now I love it. I hated the ink it came with. *IF* the flair hits you wrong, you’re going to hate it. But for a good looking, utility pen, you can do a whole lot worse.
5. Price Point1 For a gel ink pen, it’s not bad. Full on retail it looks like they are just under $7 on line but I got this for $4.00 and the refills on sale for $1. Totally worth the sale price. You’ll have to decide about full price – but for stainless steel, it’s a pretty good deal.

4 out of 5 Bronze Pencils

Pencil 4.0

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