Posts filed under Tipo

Lamy Tipo Coffee Body Rollerball Review

When reviewing products, there is sometimes a disconnect between products I like and products I would recommend. The Lamy Tipo is the embodiment of this. I personally love the Tipo. The design is a Lamy masterpiece in my opinion, but there is a long list of issues I bring up when actually recommending this pen.

First of all, the clip design takes some getting used to. When clicking it down to engage the refill, the ball on the tip of the clip lands in a circular cut out on the barrel. Most of the time anyway. There are times when it takes two or three clicks, or a little push down to get the clip to sit correctly. And on occasion, it will bounce out randomly and retract the refill, like when putting the pen down on the table.

The end of the clip sticks out far above the barrel too. That has no impact on writing, but it may get in the way depending on how and where you carry the pen.

Grip-wise, it can be slick. The plastic ridges help, but it’s not a smooth plastic where your fingers will stick. Rather, it’s lightly textured, almost matte-like. If your fingers have a little moisture its fine, but if they are dry they slide around a bit.

The Lamy M66 rollerball refill it ships with is decent, but it’s not as good as the Schmidt P8127. It is both wetter and wider, making for a line that is not as clean.

And did I mention the sticker rage? That too.

All that being said, you think I would hate this pen. Fortunately there is one redeeming thing that makes me love it: It fits Pilot G2 refills. For me, that means it fits my favorite Pilot Juice 0.38 mm Blue Black refill. #winning

Swapping in the Juice refill changes everything about this pen. I find it comfortable to hold and use, and the writing experience is excellent. My grip settles in after a couple of lines, and the ridges are no longer slick. Maybe I still have to click the knock two or three times to engage it, but look how cool this pen looks! I genuinely love it.

I buy the Lamy Tipo for gifts frequently because it is unique looking and decently priced. The plastic barrel models are $12.50 at JetPens (look at that orange!), and the aluminum are only $2 more. I’m always sure to include a Pilot Juice pen as well, plus a note on swapping out the refill. It’s fun turning an average pen into a very good one.

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

Posted on April 4, 2016 and filed under Lamy, Tipo, Pen Reviews.

Lamy Tipo Review

The Lamy Tipo is one of Lamy's more unique takes on the rollerball refill version of their products. There are rollerball models of the Safari, Vista, and even the 2000, but I think the Tipo looks the most unique of all of them. And, it's also the most affordable. At less than $11, you have to wonder how it compares to the Retro 51 and Schmidt refills.

Well, the Tipo doesn't beat the Retro 51 and Schmidt refills, but it's still a great, quirky pen with a decent refill.

Simple design

The Tipo doesn't have a knock like most retractable pens. Like the Retro 51, it uses an alternate system to extend and retract the refill. The Retro 51 uses a twist mechanism, which lots of other pens also use. They're smooth and sure.

I'm guessing that the typical rollerball refills don't work well with a clicky knock system, but I really don't know. In Lamy's case, they went with a unique catch system that uses the clip and barrel to keep the refill extended. There's a small hole in the body, and an inversely shaped knob on the end of the clip that fits perfectly into the hole when the clip is pressed down.

It's novel, but it needs work in my opinion. It feels cheap and it doesn't breed confidence in me when I use it. Many, many times I've wondered if it's going to stay when I start writing, and I've also missed the catch several times if I'm trying to click it quickly. When extending the refill with this pen, you have to be slow and deliberate to be sure it catches. I'm being a bit dramatic to make a point. In all honesty, it catches perfectly about 95% of the time. But it just doesn't make me feel sure most of the time.

The grip on the pen is fantastic for me. It's textured with shallow grooves and has a nice width. The pen is light, with more of the weight gathering toward the tip, which makes for a pleasant writing experience.

One of the most unique aspects of the Tipo is the variety of barrel colors available. White, black, pink, orange, and turquoise. They all look vibrant in the photos, and the white one I have is no let-down. On all colors, the grip, tip section, and clip are all black.

There's a small, tasteful Lamy logo on the top of the barrel parallel to the clip. It's a nice way to brand an otherwise mysterious looking pen.

Another gripe I have with the pen is the design of the top (butt?) of the pen. It looks unfinished. There are two small holes and nothing else. It looks like some decorative piece was once attached, but fell off at some point. It would be cool to see a plastic screw on the top, similar to the Safari and Vista caps. But, that's not really a big deal. The pen still has a really clean, pleasing design. Besides, at $11 I can't really complain too much about it missing decorative elements. Get a Safari already, right? I know.

An additional delightful little detail is the packaging of the pen. It's futuristic and difficult to explain, so check out the picture:

Lamy Tipo Packaging.jpg

Writing experience

Ah, the refill. Possibly the most important aspect of the pen. Short story: it does a good job of writing. It's smooth, dark, and mostly consistent. And that's the reason it doesn't get a perfect score. It tends to skip or go a little faint every now and then. Not enough to cause any frustration, but enough to knock it down a little.

Seriously, it's a good refill and I'd like to try some more just to make sure I didn't get a one off skippy refill. The refill is half the cost of the pen, so I'd expect the quality assurance to be fairly high, but that's probably a little too optimistic.

On the plus side, you have a choice of 4 colors: black, blue, red, and green.

The line is a tiny, tiny bit thicker than the default Schmidt refill that comes with the Retro 51. So, a 0.7mm refill that seems to contain a good amount of ink in the reservoir.

A point that really makes the Tipo an even greater value is the fact that it can take G2 size refills. That opens up another world of possibilities if you aren't happy with the refill that ships with the pen. Of course, you can also trim other refills that are similar to the G2. I personally use the Pilot Juice refills instead of the G2, and the Tipo body is a lot more interesting and attractive than the Juice body. Score.

Wrap up

The Lamy Tipo is a great little pen with a unique, quirky personality. It doesn't make waves with the refill, but it provides a compelling value and looks great while doing it. If you're like me and have an urge to try every rollerball out there, don't leave this one out.

(You can find more from Jeff online at Draft Evolution, Twitter, and App.net.)

Posted on May 28, 2014 and filed under Lamy, Tipo, Pen Reviews.

Lamy Tipo Roller Ball Pen Review

Lamy Tipo Roller Ball

I can spot a Lamy a mile away. Maybe it is because I am looking at them all the time in person or online but there is no doubting that their designs are distinctive. Many of their most popular pens are built around the Safari model, and of course there are higher end designs like the Studio and the Dialog 3 (swoon). You don’t have to spend a fortune to have a great pen though, and the Lamy Tipo is the embodiment of that.

I haven’t personally used some of the higher end Lamy models but I think they really thrive in the entry level market. Where else can you get a uniquely designed, distinctive pen with a high quality roller ball ink cartridge for about $10? The Tipo, while not perfect, pushes a lot of my buttons and I am really enjoying it.

The ink cartridge was a surprise for me. The ink doesn’t bleed near as much as I anticipated it would and is comparable to the Schmidt refill used in the Retro 51. One thing that may throw people off is how the knock is integrated into the clip. For me, I think it looks cool, works great, and acts as a safety if you like to clip the pen to your shirt pocket.

If there is any downside to the pen it is that the grip is somewhat slick. The ridges help out but I wouldn’t mind a little more tackiness in that area.

Overall, using the Tipo has been a great experience and I plan on picking up another one - most likely the orange barrel like Brian recently reviewed.

Posted on August 1, 2012 and filed under Lamy, Pen Reviews, Rollerball, Tipo.