This is another Star Wars pen collection – this one from Sheaffer (which if you notice in the writing samples…I CANNOT spell correctly). I ordered these from iPenStore when they were available for pre-order. They’re now available in retail stores like Office Max (if you can find one) and likely Office Depot as well. Sheaffer put out pens for Darth Vader, R2D2, and Yoda in both fountain and rollerball. They are the Star Wars Pop Collection.
These are higher end pens than the BIC line, and thusly cost more. The barrels are plastic with idealized designs and metal accents. Darth Vader look like armor. R2D2 is almost schematic like. Yoda boasts the great phrase “Do or Do Not. There is No Try.” All three have the iconic colors. The caps post pretty securely. The rollerballs run about 5.5” long. The fountains are about 6.5”.
The fountain pens have “medium” stainless till nibs and come with classic black cartridges (though I didn’t/don’t use black in the R2D2 – he calls for blue). The rollerball is also a “medium” point in the Slim Rollerball refill. The inks are dark and smooth. The nibs are flexible but not too fragile. The chrome clips have cut outs in the “white dot” design but are sturdy.
There’s a nod to ergonomics on the grips. There’s a slightly spongy rubber grip, but the grip rotates, so it seems like the point is not secure, but it is. There is a ridge where the grip meets the barrel that can dig in. The barrel diameter is just on the good side of being too wide for comfort. And just heavy enough to be well-weighted without being too heavy.
I’ve been using these pens pretty consistently for a couple of weeks and am totally enjoying them. They not only write well but are a lot of fun. There’s a bit of jury out on the Yoda rollerball because I’ve had issues with the rollerball ink in the past drying out or running dry rather quickly. With fountain pens, it’s expected because liquid ink and finite cartridges, rollerballs I expect more from. So we’ll see how that goes.
1. How does it work? – 1 – They work great. The ink feathers only a little bit on porous paper. And liquid inks are going to smear on shiny paper no matter what. But the flows are good and pigments rich.
2. Grip and feel – 0.5 – There are ridges that dig in after a while and the “not quite too wide” can get tiring after a while. I would have preferred a slightly longer and narrower barrel.
3. Material – 1 They’re plastic barrels with chrome accents and stainless steel nibs or tips.
4. Overall Design – 1 – They’re fun, functional, and if you’re a fan, or a kid or kid-at-heart, it won’t matter. These are too awesome for words just on a visual level. The fact they also work well is almost a bonus.
5. Price Point – 0.5 – These are not cheap. They’re running in the $20 EACH range. The roller ball is often cheaper than the fountain pen, but it’s a decent average. They are refillable (already on the second cartridge of Darth) so that makes them better about the price point. But these aren’t toss away BICs.
4.0 out of 5 Bronze Pencils