I have always had a pen or a pencil in my pocket, or at least for as long as I can remember.

  1. Pilot G2
  2. Retro 51
  3. Pilot Metropolitan
  4. TWSBI Eco
  5. Pencils
  6. Fisher Spacepen.

Let me preface this with what I have concluded with being a good pocket pen, and this is not the same as a “mini pen”. A lot of people prefer a smaller pen as their pocket pen. I’m not one of them. Because my pants have larger pockets.

  • It should have a cap, because retractable pens often get a lot of shit inside it, that can cause some mess like it soaking up a lot of ink. And sometimes you twist / click the mechanism that can destroy pants.
  • It should be low maintenance. We all have many writing instruments that require a lot of up keep, like fountain pens or pencils. The thing I have in my pocket should be something that always works
  • The cap should be tight enough for you to trust that it won’t come off
  • THe construction should be solid enough so that you don’t feel it will break.

Of the items on the list above, I personally have only been happy with the Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen and the Spacepen. None of them are perfect, but both of them are built in a way where I can trust that they never spill ink in my pants. The Metropolitan required a little bit too much up keep (aka too low ink capacity) and the Spacepen refill is not my favourite. But I might try to replace it with a Retro 51 refill, or something similar.