Posts filed under FriXion

Pilot FriXion Ball Slim Biz Gel Pen Review

The FriXion is Pilot’s playground. I think that is why I like this pen so much. They nailed erasable ink technology - which no one has been able to duplicate - and they keep playing around with all kinds of barrels and colors to use it in.

The FriXion Slim Biz is the latest addition to an ever expanding lineup, and is is a nice as all who came before. The barrel is skinny, as the Slim name dictates, but has a nice feel to it due to the stainless steel material used. It is retractable as well, with a blue plastic accent between the clip and the eraser.

Erasable gel ink is the biggest feature of the FriXion of course, and you can tell that Pilot has been tweaking the formula since the pen first launched. It has never worked better in my opinion, with less pressure needed and cleaner results. The ink vanishes easily and completely, at least until you pop it in the freezer.

What impresses me most about the Slim Biz is how well the 0.38 mm refill writes. It reminds me of the Uni-ball Signo DX in fact, which is about the highest praise I can offer. The lines are sharp, clean, and mess-free. And the black ink is black. There was a time in the early days of the FriXion where the black was light in color, and even leaned a little brown. That time is gone, and this ink is great.

And you can erase it!

I like this pen a lot. At $18 it is by no means cheap, but the pen is nice and fun to use. If you have never tried a FriXion pen before, the FriXion Ball Knock is the best place to start, and you can branch out from there with different tip sizes, colors, and barrels. If you are a FriXion pro then I think you will like the Slim Biz as well.

(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)


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Posted on September 5, 2016 and filed under Pilot, FriXion, Pen Reviews.

Pilot FriXion Ball Slim 0.38 mm

We all love to have friendly arguments over our favorite pens. The Pilot G2 is better than the Uni-ball Signo 207! The Uni-ball Jetstream is better than the Pilot Acroball! The Sharpie Liquid Pencil is better than…well, it’s better than a rock I guess. Maybe.

The basis of all of these conversations is that as individuals, we all have specific needs that need to be met with our writing instruments. A pen that may be perfect for you won’t work at all for someone else. I like to use the phrase “That’s why they make more than one pen” all the time to show it’s ok no not like the same pen as someone else.

While erasable gel ink pens are a highly specific category, they are the only category where it is not ok to like a pen besides the Pilot FriXion. It is at the top of the heap, and nothing else is close in quality or performance. You may not like or have a need for erasable gel ink pens, and that’s fine, but if you do, the Pilot FriXion is the only consideration. Arguments otherwise are not being accepted at this time.

The latest FriXion to cross my desk is the Pilot FriXion Ball Slim 0.38 mm and it is as good as ever. Writing with this pen, you wouldn’t know that the ink is any different in formulation from any standard gel ink pen. That is key. It’s a gel ink pen that happens to be erasable. By friction, no less.

If you aren’t familiar with the FriXion, the ink is thermosensitive. This means the heat caused by the friction of the firm rubber eraser removes the ink from the page. It’s also possible for the ink to disappear if your paper is left in too hot of a location, such as in a car in the summer. Your notes aren’t lost forever though. Pop your notebook in the freezer and your writing reappears. It’s like magic!

I love the slim barrel design of this model. It’s very comfortable to write with for me, and the 0.38 mm tip is right up my alley. The eraser work perfectly as well. The only negative is that the refills are smaller than the 0.5 mm Ball Knock, which uses a G2 sized refill and is only slightly more expensive.

Answering the question “What is the best erasable pen on the market” is the easiest question I get in my inbox. It’s the Pilot FriXion, and nothing else is close.

Posted on November 30, 2015 and filed under FriXion, Pilot, Pen Reviews.

Pilot FriXion Ball Knock Design Series Review

(Jeff Abbott is a regular contributor at The Pen Addict. You can find more from Jeff online at Draft Evolution and Twitter.)

To be honest, I haven't used an erasable pen since 5th grade, and at that time they were horrible.

Apparently, a lot has changed. Erasable pens don't have to be incredibly difficult to use and marginally useless when it comes to writing and erasing. The Pilot FriXion is a gel ink pen that uses friction to remove the ink. I don't even pretend to understand how it all works, but I do know that the experience is much more pleasant than the previous generations of erasable pens. If I had these as a student when erasable pens were mandatory, I wouldn't have grown to hate the phrase "erasable pen" so much. Even now, I'm trying to use that phrase frequently in an attempt to rid it of the awful taste it leaves in my mouth.

The FriXion ink is surprisingly smooth when writing – very similar to other Pilot gel ink pens (but not quite) like the G2. The particular model I'm using is called the Ball Knock Design series, and it features a 0.5 mm point. When you first write with the pen, you can detect a slight drag from the point, but if you can remember to press very lightly then that issue almost disappears.

Writing with the pen is effortless. It doesn't take much pressure at all to put ink on the page, and I haven't seen any skipping or gunking that was extremely common with the old erasable pens. This part still blows my mind. I'm impressed by how well it writes for an erasable pen. It doesn't beat a Pilot Juice or an Acroball or any other permanent gel or hybrid ink, but this is an erasable ink and it's done pretty great so far.

So, it writes fairly well, but how does it erase? Well, I would sum it up as, "Meh." Erasing is easy – one or two strokes across the ink usually does the job, but it never completely disappears. You can always see the trace of what was written before, and that makes me a little perturbed. If it's supposed to be erasable, then I expect it to be erasable like a pencil. Sure, you sometimes can see the writing from an erased pencil mark, but it's much harder to detect than the FriXion ink. This is obviously a personal problem that I need to deal with; if you're in the market for an erasable ink pen, then the FriXion gets the job done with no hassle or frustration. It's a great erasable pen.

The top of the pen contains the rubber tip used for erasing, which is convenient and works well. I was stumped when I first used the pen as to how to operate the retract mechanism. Pressing on the rubber tip (where a knock normally is) doesn't do anything. After a few seconds of looking around the pen, I realized it's the clip that acts as the knock. Takes a bit of retraining to use the clip instead of the top of the pen, but it works well when I remember to use it properly the first time.

There is a tip on JetPens about the temperature-sensative nature of this ink. Apparently, erased ink will reappear if it gets cold enough (lower than 14 degress Fahrenheit), which could be fun to play with but unfortunate if you didn't want that to happen. Just something to keep in mind. I didn't test it out – I take their word for it.

Overall, this is a great pen and I'm really impressed by how far along erasable ink has come in a few years. If you're looking for an erasable pen, this is a great place to start.

(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)

Posted on January 7, 2015 and filed under FriXion, Pilot, Pen Reviews.