Nov 4, 20166099 views

EDC Pens--What's in Your Bag?

What pens do you carry around on a daily basis? I've assembled a list with writing samples from the pens currently in the bag that follows me to court, to the office, and everywhere in between. I use each pen a little differently. I'll run through it and hopefully you'll have your own to add in the comments (include photos if you can, I'm always on the lookout for awesome new pens!).
Currently in my bag are the following:
Left to Right in first photo:
(6) 1960s Parker Ballpoint with the Blue Gel Parker Refill (my personal favorite) (Retail ~$100). I have a bunch of these, but I always keep at least one in my bag and one in my office. It looks classy, but doesn't have a nib that a client can mangle. Thus, this is the pen I lend the most often. Every fountain pen user needs a lending pen--trust me.
(5) 1944 Parker "51" single jewel with Sterling Silver cap and fine nib (almost XF), Ink is Pilot Iroshizuku Tsuki-Yo (I think, it's been a while since I filled it). (Retail ~$150 with a Sterling Cap, less for many other variants). This is my signature pen. This is the only pen I own that can handle my fast/flowing signature consistently, so when I have things to sign, this is my go to pen. Plus, it can sit for two weeks with the cap on and write instantly afterwards--really a fantastic pen, everyone should own one. Overall performance wise, you can't really beat it.
(4) Grifos Bog Oak - totally stock (for now) with a Medium Bock stainless steel nib. Ink is Mont Blanc Limited Edition JFK Navy (which half the time looks gray). (~$200 on Massdrop, Retail is higher). I use this pen to take down phone messages quickly. Its no-nonsense firm medium makes it perfect for quick on-the-go jotting down of notes.
(3) Wahl-Eversharp Decoband in Lapis Blue with Fine (almost M) "Superflex" nib. Ink is Limited Edition Mont Blanc Honore de Balzac (laugh it up, that's the name) blue/turquoise, possibly my new favorite ink (which had been Waterman Inspired/South Seas Blue). (Retail $850). This is my "WOW FACTOR" pen. the bright red feed and enormous size (it's bigger in every dimension than a Mont Blanc 149) screams work of art. I use this pen for client meetings/note taking. It's definitely a pen "to be seen with," but it helps that it's also a dream to write with.
(2) Pelikan M205 Aquamarine "FrankenPelikan" with a 1910s size 2 Sheaffer "long tines" wet noodle nib. Ink is Pelikan's Edelstein Aquamarine which came with the set. Also a fantastic ink (although a little on the dry side, like many Pelikan inks). (~$150 on Massdrop for the set, retail is higher, another $300 for the custom nib job). This pen lives in my Levenger international pocket briefcase--so anytime I have that out, this is the pen I use.
(1) Pilot Custom 912. This is the newest edition to the EDC bag. It has a custom ground FA nib which got some extra flex treatment and a nearly needlepoint nib (XXF). I think they also worked the feed because I've seen no issues with railroading even with heavy flex use--and railroading is a common problem in the stock pen. Ink is the same as in the Decoband, Mont Blanc Honore de Balzac blue/turquoise (amazing ink for a flexible nib pen...SHADING and even a little sheen sometimes). (~$370 including the extra nib work). This pen has replaced my trusty 1920s Wahl Pen in my Levenger Pad Folio for in-court note taking, so it will be getting lots of use--although, it is the least smooth out of my EDC pens due to the extremely fine nib, usable every day, but not butter like some prefer.

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Photo with Caps off!
You'll note the Grifos and Decoband are not posted--deliberate. The Decoband is obnoxiously large when posted, practically the length of a lightsaber, so I never post it. The Grifos doesn't post carefully enough around the wood for me to be comfortable posting it--never a scratch shall be risked!
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Of course, the writing samples:
For some reason the Pilot sample looks like a broader line than you'd see in real life--it's unbelievably thin in person. Color is slightly off as well, colors are a little more vivid in person. Otherwise, the below shows you a pretty good comparison. Paper is a lined Rhodia pad, letter size--bright white.
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So, what pens do refuse to leave home without?
Do you have suggestions for pens I should be carrying, but don't (yet)?
Leave it in the comments!
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aadewitt, ltopper, and 27 others
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Montblanc starwalker
I share you, Today I bring following 5 pens.
Pilot Custom 845 B / Pilot Blue Black Montblanc Meisterstück 149 F / Pelikan Blue Black Visconti Homo Sapiens Bronze Oversize F / Pelikan Blue Black Visconti Opera Typhoon Blue M / Pilot Blue Black TWSBI Diamond 580 RB + Pilot #5 14k nib SM / Iroshizuku Yuyake
Favourite one is Opera Tuphoon, even it has stainless steel nib. It’s certainity a very hard pen tip, but it’s a reliable pen that can be handled roughly, with a wide tolerance that allows me to comfotability write.
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A nib of TWSBI is interchangeable with Pilot #5 14k nib wich is isntalled with Custom 74 or Heritage 91 without any difficult processing. A feed is remained as original TWSBI, then ink is fed very wet, and the nib is getting more flexibility. I love the taste of this.
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This is my current crop. I'm really enjoying the twsbi go!
Right is I am carrying a Nemosine Fission in Gunmetal Gray with a 0.8 stub nib, a nice, smooth and moderately wet writer that weighs a metric ton and is suitable to be used as a shotgun slug ; a Parker 61 in sweet Burgundy color, Medium nib, and damn good looks ; and an extremely vintage Montblanc 22 in Extra Fine, with the most flexible nib to date.
Love this thread. One of the following is always in my pocket, pretty much in this order of frequency: Madmaxco stainless bolt-action (slightly modified with a thin rubber grip), Lamy 2000, EF nib, Riind (such a fine writer!) Lamy Al-Star
I only carry one at a time and only to work, after work and weekend they stay home. Pilot Vanishing Point(F) Karas Kustom Retrakt- Pilot Precise V7 RT refill
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My EDC: Waterman Carene (M) Lamy 2000 (M) Platinum Century 3776 (M/F) Pilot Custom 74 (M) Waterman Expert (M)
Current "EDC"
1) Lamy AL Star F - lives in my lab coat 2) Platinum 3776 Chartres Fine - in my shirt pocket most days 3) Sheaffer Pop R2D2 Medium - in my backpack 4) Pentel Energel 0.5mm black/needle - also lives in my lab coat
If you couldn't tell, I write small, so <0.5mm nibs/points are a must. The 'D2 is my "sign" pen. Lot of blue because ... government job.
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My Pelican M-800 is my EDC; always stuck in my shirt. Then there's a Lamy Safari w/Lamy fuel color ink, Nemosine Singularity w/Private Reserve red ink and a Conklin Duragraph w/Stub Nib and blue ink are on my desk and used every day. There's a;so a Bexley in my backpack that gets used frequently.
My current rotation...visconti rembrandt, bamboo ranga, esterbrook, stipula etruria rainbow, montblanc andy warhol and visconti opera bronze
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I always have four pens in my daily rotation, which pens those are change on a weekly basis most of the time. I carry one in my pocket, and three in a Nock Lookout 3 pen case that stays in my book bag.
Pocket: - I ALWAYS have my Karas Kustoms Fountain K in my pocket. Like turn around and go back home to get it sort of always. Indestructible pen, excellent nib. And a great way to show off...
Nock Lookout: Here are the other pens I have in my current rotation: - 1930's Shaffer Balance White Dot that my grandfather found in a desk drawer after my grandmother passed away. I refurbished it myself, and now it writes like a dream while also being a reminder of my grandmother. - TWSBI 580AL. I just like this pen. Piston filler so it holds a ton of ink for taking notes (I'm an EE student) and the fine nib writes well on a wide range of paper to boot. - Monteverde Invincia in carbon fiber with the Goulet 1.1mm stub. I usually have at least one stub in my rotation, and this nib is awesome.
Seeing lots of Lamy 2000s and I have to agree. It's just so convenient to cap/un-cap and the spring mechanism of the clip is really easy to use.
These days I find myself using my Lamy 2000 more and more... so smooth. Also a Lamy Al-Star with a 1.1 stub nib. In the pen loop on my journal is a Pilot Metropolitan EF.
Normal daily, EF Visconti homo sapiens with Robert Oster fire and ice. On duty, EF Lamy 2000 (usually Pelikan Edelstein Smoky Quartz) and a fisher space pen ballpoint backup.
In my backpack right now, a vintage oversize hero pen with a twsbi broad, a waterman 52 1/2 v with a Greg minuskin needlepoint wet noodle ideal, an eversharp 707 full flex, a lingmo Lorelei with baystate blue, a Noodlers konrad with a custom feed and zebra comic g dip pen nib, and a Lamy 2000 F with platinum citrus black iron gall.
In my desk I have a Scheaffer statesman snorkel, platinum 3776 soft fine (my iron gall mule) and an American pencil company Venus inked. Plus a bunch of Chinese pens I'm testing (Delike brass pen with the waverly/architect "bent nib" is so far an absolutely ludicrously good pen, even better than the Kaweco brass sport it imitates, for $15)
Honeybadgers
Any chance you have a writing sample of the Waterman? Sounds like an awesome collection!
I find that I gravitate back to three pens; Pilot Metropolitan 'white tiger', feels good and writes so smooth OHTO Dude, I like that it looks more modern and doesn't roll when laid down Levenger True Writer Element, the heavy brass case feels so good in the hand and looks clasic
They all have fine nibs, though the Levenger is closer to med., and I use Diamine ink in all of them.
If I'm going EDC sleek, I've got a Stipula Passoporto. But I've found that it leaks a bit in the heat of summer. I just bought a Kaweco Liliput and will give that a try. I like that its brass. If its off to a meeting or for notes I've got a Sailor Pro Gear slim demonstrator or a Pelikan M205 demonstrator.
I own a Pilot Vanishing Point, Pelikan 405, Stipula Passporto, and a Regal Queen Elizabeth. My everyday carry is a Sheafffer White Dot Snorkel from 1954 though. It has the original lifetime fine nib and writes better than anything else I've used before. I never let anyone use it out of fear of my nib getting ruined. I recently purchased a Sheaffer White Dot desk pen from the 1920's for $8 at an antique store.
Today in my bag: -Kaweco Sport: gold fine nib -Namisu Nova: Bock fine nib, but it writes more like a medium. I may need to adjust it. -Pilot Metropolitan: EF nib
As far as ink goes, I don't remember what it is, but it is as black as the nightmares of the fish at the bottom of the ocean near the elder god of HP Lovecraft's fever dreams.
Usually I am carrying two pens daily. One rollerball and one fountain. Rolling my collections. Today had: 1, Montblanc rollerball with Coffee Brown refill. 2. Modified and tuned to perfection Jinhao 159 with FPR nib #35 with Montblanc Toffee ink.
The benefit of being retired.. well, 2 benefits, 1. - I don't have to carry nothin' nowhere anymore... I can have it all within reach ;) And 2. - I have ample time to read and reply to posts from my "pen pal peeps" out there :) As the commercial says... "I don't always drink beer, but when I do... " So - when I do venture out in the world.. I usually grab a Kaweco filled with ink that is suitable for general use papers. I really love the Kaweco and being able to stick it in pants or vest pocket - I have a Tasche and a Rook, but the Kaweco just feels more sturdy. I also like that, as an eyedropper, it does't need to be filled as often, and I can change the nib size in a flash. If I had to have EDC's when I went to work, I would be soooo weighed down...
Lamy 2K w F nib; Twsibi vac mini w/ B nib; Pilot VP w. M nib & Lamy rollerball for forms with cabonpaper. Unflashy workhorses suited for a healthcare setting.
Copying from a previous discussion
https://www.massdrop.com/buy/retrakt-pen https://www.massdrop.com/buy/pilot-metropolitan-retro-pop-gel-ballpoint-set https://www.massdrop.com/buy/karas-kustoms-blackout https://www.massdrop.com/buy/urban-survival-gear-tiscribe-pens https://www.massdrop.com/buy/machine-era-solid-brass-pen Along with a few other assorted pens that I have picked up over the years.
And my favorite ever freebie find, a .925 Sterling Silver Tiffany Pen.(link to a review of the specific model I found, not my site nor my review)https://unroyalwarrant.com/2014/09/26/tiffany-co-sterling-silver-roller-ball-pen-review/ I don't carry it often anymore at work (working in a Warehous environment instead of an office).
What a delightful note in this less-than-delightful day. Thank you for your time and care in sharing this! Of course, I now have both pen and ink envy - the ink I can easily resolve, but the pen (of course based on my personal writing style preference I ended up right at the top of the price heap) will have to wait. It's good to have aspirations. Of the current collection, my favorites are all in the lower price range - all my Lamy Safaris, and the Kaweco sport. Cheers!
In my pocket, I usually carry one of these four,
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left to right: Tombow Airpress, Tornado Breakaway, Tombow XPA or Lamy Pico. I my pack you'd always find a Rhodia Exabook or Transotype Sensebook plus whatever fountain pens I have in rotation, which currently are:
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How odd, Tombow doesn't seem to sell the XPA anywhere else but in Europe, not even the Japan market. Do you have the Zoom 2000?
MrSharkbait
Unfortunately no. Just can't justify the 2000's price tag. I got the XPA from cult pens, where it was on clearance at a time when I was buying a cart full from cultpens anyway.
I often wear polo shirts or t-shirts with pockets. The pockets in them are much shorter than the pockets in dress shirts, so I like correspondingly shorter pens. I have an Ohto Tasche and Ohto Rook that write nicely and fit the bill. Moving up a bit from the Ohtos, I have a TWSBI Diamond Mini with a 1.1 mm stub nib. It writes very nicely, and the stub nib makes my handwriting look great.
About ten years ago I bought a Pelican M205 Demonstrator because I wanted a piston-filler, and I like the techy Demonstrator look. At that time I kept a day planner, and the bold nib in the Pelican was just too big to use, so I bought a custom-ground nib from Richard Binder. The regular side was ground to a 0.9 mm cursive italic, that writes like a dream and really makes my handwriting pop, but the nice thing about the nib is that the top side is ground to a fine point. I would keep notes and other writing using the cursive side, then just roll the pen over to write in my day planner.
Alas, that demonstrator suffered a tragic and ignoble end caused by the owner's negligence, the details of which I would prefer not to go into. I finally replaced it earlier this year with the Pelican M205 "Coffee and Cream" from a recent Massdrop. The old custom nib (which lived through the unfortunate "accident") fit right in, and now it is most often my EDC pen - light and compact for t-shirts, a little bit classy, and I get comments on my signature when I use it.
JRRClocks
Binder is a nib master! Although I have no nibs currently that he's worked on, I've had the pleasure of testdriving at least one. Glad to see you could save it!
The only pen I EDC is a Parker Jotter with a Fisher cartridge in it. Occasionally (depending on my pants) I'll carry a Bullet as well, this is usually for work because coworkers can't be trusted (food service, Fisher cartridges are bae when company pens and markers are dollar store crap and you have to write on greasy, wet, wax, and sometimes all of the above paper. Seriously recommend them for anyone who has to write on not-fun surfaces ever, they are totally worth the price.)
In my bag for school things vary a lot. Lately I've switched over to wholly digital notetaking with a Surface, but I've always carried blue gel pens usually Pilot G2, sometimes Uniball 207s, Vision/Elites, and recently their new Air. The G2 has been a standby since middle school and I still have some of the same pens from then, actually. I dislike the longer drying time on the Pilot ink, but I prefer the color and I'm a careful writer. Rollerballs in general I like for the e
I favor 0.7 for gel, but 1.0 for ballpoint, personally. I rarely use ballpoint for anything I'm going to have to go back and study extensively later, but prefer it for things like sketching and brainstorming. Rollerballs basically end up pulling academic duty almost exclusively. I usually pack a pencil in there too for any scantron exams I might have forgotten about; these occasionally see some use if I feel like sketching something while I'm out.
The G2 was a staple of my education, until my dad gave me a parker gel (same model as above), and I dove head first into pens.
If you like the G2, anything that takes Parker gel refills will be right up your alley
Thanks for the recommendation! Was actually thinking about those for my Jotter, but love the Fisher cartridges and already have a box of G2s to finish up haha
Thanks for the post. I guess I should also care a "loaner" ballpoint too. Whenever someone asks to borrow a pen, I usually loan them my Lamy Safari and I make sure that I get it back. And I have gotten a few people into fountain pens because of that.
These are my daily carry - can't leave home without them - pens and what they are filled with now:
Lamy Safari - fine point: Papier Plume Forget me not Montblanc Vintage 144 - fine point: Montblanc Irish Green Franklin Christoph Panther - Matsuyama medium italic stub: Franklin Christoph Midnight Emerald Pilot Vanishing Point with 1.0 stub nib: Montblanc Royal Blue TWSBI Diamond 580 with medium nib: Pilot Iroshizuku Tsuyu-Kusa Lamy 2000 with medium nib: Montblanc Lavender Purple Lamy Studio with 14K fine nib: L'Artisan Pastellier Bleu Atlantique Delta Horsepower with 1.1 fusion nib: Pilot Iroshizuku Chiku-Rin (my "highlighter" color)
I made a pen case for them to fit in which fits great in my bag or my briefcase.
DrPenfection
Nice collection! the 144 is a great pen! Does yours have a semi-flex nib? Love to see photos.
I used to loan out a lami safari, but I gave it to my son. Can't have him using a ballpoint his whole life!

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DrPenfection
Hi! Where did you get the 14k Lamy studio nib? I would like to buy a gold nib for my safari, like one of the emporium ones, yet I dont know where are they softer than the normal lamy steel ones?
Mine aren't fancy or expensive, and they must do double duty as art supplies. I carry two zebra stainless steel ballpoint pens (one black ink, one blue ink), Two Pilot Metropolitan Fine nib fountain pens (again, one blue ink, one black), two Kaweco Sport fountain pens, one with an EF nib and invisible ink, the other with a 1.1 calligraphy nib and black ink (soon to be green, for the holidays). Recently, I added a Pentel brush pen to my daily carry repertoire. I have not yet purchased a converter for it, as I'm still going through the cartridges that came with the pen. I also carry a water brush with diluted ink, several lead holders, and a variety of other writing and drawing tools. For the most part, I use Noodler's Heart of Darkness when I need black ink, Noodler's Bay state Blue or Bad Belted Kingfisher for blue, and Noodler's Blue Ghost for Invisible Ink (fun for leaving notes in Hubby's lunch, writing "secret" notes to my nephew, or making UV-reactive drawings). Different tools to suit a different budget and purpose.
Great post! I don't carry anything fancy, but I do love these two:
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Karas Kustoms EDK Pen Machine Era Pen | Original
I'm also a HUGE fan of the Fisher Bullet Space Pen. I have it in black and find it to be the perfect "pocket pen".
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MikeMD
I'm happy to contribute. Just to be clear my most basic belief is that Pens Are Personal. This means that one should look for a good, reliable, well-made pen THAT SPEAKS To YOU. For me this winds up being a whole bunch of PARKERs, but it might be entirely different for you. So whatever the brand or model you're certain to enjoy the search ... I promise!
MikeMD
I've been mostly carrying lately a "triumvirate" of... - Tactile Turn FP, black polycarbonate with brass cap. - Conklin Heritage - Noodler Ahab