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Reviews Written by kof...

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Zebra Tect 2way Drafting Pencil - 0.5 mm - White Body - ZEBRA MA42-W
  Honestly mystified by..., April 5, 2014
Honestly mystified by all the reviews that say this pencil feels fragile/cheap. I bought mine in 2011 and other than some rubbing out of the text, it still looks like new now in 2014. I'll be upfront and say I haven't ever used this pencil for drafting, just day-to-day note-taking and drawing, but it's done me well these last few years.

The shaker mechanism gives it a nice heft and helps keep the center of balance relatively low, so it's easy to control. As a result, I've actually found it to be more comfortable to use than my fancy alpha-gel kurutoga pencil. Both the shaker and the clicky lead advance work well and haven't broken on me yet. The eraser is a tiny nub of a thing like basically every draft pencil out there, so get a nice eraser and you're golden. :)
Uni-ball Signo UM-151 Gel Ink Pen - 0.38 mm - Emerald - UNI UM151.31
  Bought this because the..., April 4, 2014
Bought this because the color caught my eye and because I've always been a fan of these pens. The color is lovely blue-green shade that catches the eye but is still very readable even in large chunks. Definitely recommended :)
Uni-ball Signo UM-151 Gel Ink Pen - 0.28 mm - Mandarin Orange - UNI UM15128.38
  Got one of these for..., April 4, 2014
Got one of these for grading papers. It is very, very bright and, although recognizable orange, almost indistinguishable from red at a glance. Has all the characteristics I love in UM-151s but also had the unfortunate tendency to blob at times. Not a huge deal, but still annoying at times.
Pilot Juice Gel Ink Pen - 0.38 mm - 12 Color Set - PILOT LJU-120UF-12C
  My previous favorite..., April 4, 2014
My previous favorite gel pens were the Uniball UM-151s because they had waterproof ink, sturdy cone tips, and nice rubberized grips, but they're a little expensive. The Pilot Juice have similar characteristics and are slightly cheaper so I decided to take a chance on them.

Overall I'm pretty satisfied with my purchase. The pens write smoothly (I, at least, haven't noticed any scratchiness) and, while the ink isn't 100% waterproof (a small amount will run off when soaking in water) it's very very close. They do feel a little cheaper and lighter than the UM-151s, but that's to be expected at ~75% of the price. The case is obviously flimsier than the hard plastic one used on the UM-151s but it's actually held up pretty well to being banged around in my backpack everyday. And although I thought the holes for looping in lanyards on the clip was ridiculous at first, it ended up being really useful for tying them up next to sign-up sheets and the like.

My only problem is the inclusion of apple green and blue-black. The former is too light to be read at the 0.38mm thickness and pretty much useless. The blue and blue-black are both usable pens, but the colors are very very similar in real life, and I didn't see the point in having both of them. I ended up buying a leaf green and violet pen to replace them so the set is perfect for me now, but I wish they'd be included in the first place.
P+G Mimi Pochi Friends Case - Tortoiseshell Cat - P+G MIMI MIKE
  I got this because I..., January 31, 2014
I got this because I simply could not resist how cute it was and because I conveniently needed a new coin case. It is just as cute in real life, although slightly larger than I expected - about the size of my fist and capable of holding more coins than you will probably ever need in your life.

The silicone is as soft as advertised, but does tend to pick up dust and particles while rattling around in your bag. The size of the case also means the ears are spaced a bit apart, meaning you definitely need two hands to open it up. I'd kind of expected both of these things, though, and neither is a real deal breaker, so overall 4.5(rounded to a 5)/5 :)
Ohto Tasche Fountain Pen - Fine Nib - Pink Body - OHTO FF-10T PINK
  I bought this pink Ohto..., January 31, 2014
I bought this pink Ohto Tasche to replace a silver one I'd owned for several years and then lost.

It is probably the most convenient pen I own since it closes into such a compact shape and fits perfectly into a pocket. The construction of the pen is solid and it is weighted nicely when posted. On the other hand, as several reviewers have pointed out, the nibs on the Tasche tend to be very hit or miss, and the ink it comes with is objectively TERRIBLE. If you're willing to try tuning the nib, however, it's a great cheap fountain pen.

Of note: although Ohto is a Japanese company, the 'fine' nib on this pen is MUCH closer to a medium than a fine, and writes with about the same thickness as a 0.7mm fiber tip pen.
Kuretake Zig Letter Pen CocoIro Pen Refill - Brush Type - Black - KURETAKE LP-RM-010S
  Bought this pen to practice..., May 3, 2012
Bought this pen to practice chinese calligraphy, and I'm pretty disappointed. The pen writes very wet, causing the ink to feather and bleed on cheaper paper, or take a small eternity to dry on higher quality paper. The brush part is made of synthetic fiber and holds its shape surprisingly while still giving lots of nice variation. Unfortunately, it's also super thin and really really hard to control. I'll probably end up buying on the normal fine/extra fine refills next time.
Zebra Tect 2way Drafting Pencil - 0.5 mm - White Body - ZEBRA MA42-W
  I bought this to replace..., May 3, 2012
I bought this to replace a staedtler 925 which jammed and died, and it's served me well. It's got a mostly plastic construction and does feel a little flimsy at times, but it hasn't shown any major signs of wear after a year of pretty much constant usage. The shaker and click mechanism feel solid, and I haven't yet had issues with jams etc. A good little pencil overall.
Ohto Tasche Fountain Pen - Fine Nib - Silver Body - OHTO FF-10T SILVER
  I'd been coveting one..., May 3, 2012
I'd been coveting one of these pens for awhile because they are super pretty but was wary of actually getting one because of all the subpar reviews. I ended up finally biting the bullet and getting one and have to say I'm actually pretty impressed. Like the previous reviewers have said, it's pretty much unusable out of the box, but if you bend the tines slightly the writing improves significantly. I will admit it took awhile to get it just right, but now it's one of my go to pens.
Sailor Clear Candy Fountain Pen - Medium Fine Nib - Trademark & Body - SAILOR 11-0103-310
  I used to own a sailor..., May 3, 2012
I used to own a sailor manhattaner's and loved it until I lost it while abroad, so I bought the clear candy as a replacement for it since it seemed to be of a similar style.
I have to say though, the clear candy didn't really live up to my expectations. On the whole, the pen seems very sturdy and well constructed; however, it writes very scratchy and, unless I'm super careful with it, any movement seems to cause ink to leak out from the nib - I've barely written with it at all and already almost all the ink in the cartridge is gone.

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