Four Pens I Can’t Put Down

Four favorites

I have a pretty short attention span when it comes to pens— using a favorite for awhile, then moving on to something different/newer/shinier. Later on, I re-discover the old favorite and bring it back into the pen fold. So there’s always been a pretty decent turnover rate in my day-to-day pen usage.

Four pens

Until now.

I just can’t get enough of these four favorites.

Throughout the course of a week (or day…or hour), I find opportunities to use all of these exceptionally well-made machined pens. I cart them to and from work, journal with them, fill out my datebook(s), and make grocery lists.

They’re just so good.

Ti2 Techliner Shorty

The Ti2 Techliner Shorty (Gonzodized finish) by Ti2 Design is the newest of the bunch and features neodymium magnets, as well as an unconventional nosecone, that make this pen extra fascinating. With an Uni-ball Signo UMR-85N 0.5 mm black refill installed, this has become my go-to Field Notes pen for tracking work and home to-dos.

Karas Kustoms Retrakt

This stunning and classic looking two-tone Retrakt, by Karas Kustoms, arrived in November, and I immediately outfitted it with a Pilot Juice 0.38 mm blue-black refill. The line is super sharp— perfect for jotting down appointments and making entries in my One Line A Day journal. Killer looks, killer performance. Plus knurling. Cannot resist the knurling.

Mover & Shaker

I’ve been using my TactileTurn Mover and Shaker pens since they arrived following Will Hodges’ successful Kickstarter campaign. I should’ve reviewed these long ago, but they’re so good and trouble-free that I almost take them for granted. I’m currently using a Pilot G2 0.38 mm black refill in the Mover (top/red), and a 0.5 mm black Moleskine refill in the Shaker (bottom/raw aluminum). When I’m in the mood for a ballpoint, I swap a Parker-style Schmidt EasyFlow 9000 into the Shaker. They’re rock solid, with a finely grooved grip section for interest and texture.

Four favorites

Each of these pens deserves its own review, and I promise to do so in the near future. But for now, I just wanted to heap some praise where praise is due— on Mike Bond of Ti2 Design, Dan Bishop of Karas Kustoms, and Will Hodges of TactileTurn.

They’ve all run successful and well-managed Kickstarter projects and continue to turn out pens that exemplify attention to detail and good old quality workmanship.

And they’re all really nice guys.

Four favorites

Four favorites. Four pens I just can’t put down.


I purchased all of four pens with my very own allowance.

There are no affiliate links in this post, just happy pen smiles.

8 thoughts on “Four Pens I Can’t Put Down

  1. Great post and great pens! I just recently picked up a gonzodized shorty Techliner and a dark red Shaker myself, and they are both absolutely stunning. I’ve been using them with a 0.38 mm black Signo UMR refill and a burgundy Fisher Space Pen refill, respectively.

  2. I love my Techliner. I also have a Kickstarter pen, called Takumi. It fits any kind of refill out there. It is exceedingly light to hold and I use Uni DX refills in it. I believe their website is up and they are selling black and silver. I have a really nice dark green from their Kickstarter project. The DX black green refill is almost a perfect match to the pen!

    • Very interesting pen! Thanks for commenting as I wasn’t aware of it. I’m trying to be super picky about what I buy this year, but this is something to think about!

  3. How much wider/thicker in girth are the tactile turn mover/shaker compared to the Retrakt?
    I have a Retrakt and really don’t think I want a pen much wider.. But the Shaker looks like a shorter more elegant Retrakt…

    • The Retrakt measures 0.39″ whereas the Shaker measures 0.46″ (in the straight grip region), so the Shaker IS a bit thicker. Personally, the Retrakt fits my hand/grip JUST a little bit better than the Shaker. Hope this helps!

  4. I love your blog. I don’t remember how I found it but I always check it when I am in the blogosphere! Your posts are always so well done and I have taken your advice on a number of pens and have yet to be disappointed! So I have ordered a dark red TactileTurn Mover. Perhaps this will be my EDC along with my trusty Kaweco Sport (love it, writes like butter!) for 2015. Keep posting!

      • Love the Mover! Solid, robust feel. I inserted a Pilot Gel caramel refill and love the way it all works together. The multitude of refills makes this a great choice.

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