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Pen Refills

The refill is the heart of a pen. This is where ink meets paper and will determine how effortlessly your pen glides across the page and what kind of line you draw. All of my pens use standard ink refills that are readily available from office supply stores. The one thing that I noticed while researching refills is that there is a wide range in personal preferences. What works best for me may not be your favorite. I will ship your pen with a top quality refill installed. Try it out and see how you like it. I've mentioned some well-regarded alternatives below if you want to experiment.
History:Laszlo Biro created a viable ballpoint refill in 1938 after others had experimented with the idea dating back to 1888. In 1945 ballpoint pens made their first commercial appearance in the United States and rapidly replaced fountain pens as the writing instrument of choice.
Ballpoint:
Ballpoint refills contain a metal ball at the tip that rolls as it moves on the paper. A thick oil-based ink containing dyes is coated on the rolling metal ball and transferred onto the paper as you write. Gravity aids the flow of the thick waxy ink, so the refill must be held upright when used. The thickness of the ink prevents the ink from drying out when the pen is not being used.
Gel:
Gel ink refills use a water-soluble gel-like ink containing pigments instead of dyes. The gel is able to hold a higher concentration of pigments in solution, yet still flows more rapidly than a ballpoint's ink. This results in a darker and bolder line using less pressure than a ballpoint. The pigments used in gel refills are available in multiple different vivid colors.
Rollerball:
The rollerball refills use a water-soluble liquid ink containing dyes. The thinner liquid ink of rollerballs flows easily past the ball, causing a prominent line with very little pressure on the pen tip. It allows for a smooth writing experience much like writing with a fountain pen. Rollerball refills historically had a greater tendency to dry-out when exposed to air. That is why you usually find them in capped pens. They have made improvements in this regard over the last few years.

For Pens Taking Parker-Style Ballpoint Refills:

For pens that take Parker style refills, I recommend the Schmidt easyFLOW 9000M (also marketed by Private Reserve), which is made in Germany. This is considered by many to be the finest ballpoint refill available, and I agree. That is why I include it in all my pens that take Parker-style refills unless a different refill is requested. Schmidt uses a lower viscosity ink that flows more readily and has re-engineered the cartridge to prevent the ink from spilling or drying out. The result is a refill that writes like a rollerball, but has the convenience of a ballpoint. I carry the easyFLOW 9000 refills in both black and blue ink. Please let me know which you would prefer with your pen. I have also recently tried the Monteverde Soft Roll refills and find them to be very good. If you prefer a thinner point, their extra fine version is excellent.  For those who prefer a gel refill, Monteverde makes an excellent Parker-style gel refills in multiple different colors. Visit your local office supply store. The Parker-style refill is the most common refill type for pens so you'll have lots of choices. I stock a limited supply of refills if you have difficulty finding what you want elsewhere.

For Pens Taking Cross-Style Ballpoint Refills:

Cross-style ballpoint refills are thinner than Parker-style, so most of the thinner diameter pens take Cross-style refills. I find less difference among brands in these refills than with the Parker-style. My favorite is still the Private Reserve brand from Germany. These write smoothly with no skipping. The Monteverde Broad Point is also a nice writing refill. I also find the Dyacom-branded ballpoint refills to write really well. These are made in Taiwan using German ink and Swiss tungsten carbide rolling balls. The Fisher Space Pen refill is pressurized and has many good reviews online. Having tried it, I don't think it is worth the premium price it carries unless you routinely need to write upside down or have a space mission coming up. I have a few of these if you'd like to try one. Cross also makes a "Broad Point" refill that writes smoothly and leaves a wider darker line that many like.

For Pens Taking Rollerball Refills:

Schmidt makes two safety ceramic roller refills (Schmidt 5888F and Schmidt 888F) that get high praise. The fine points are often preferred in rollerballs because the high flow rate of the liquid ink leaves a wider, darker line. These rollerball pens will also take Monteverde Fineliner refills. These are fine point felt-tip style refills that come in multiple different colors.