In a recent trip to Staples to see what office supplies needed to be reviewed, I came across the STAEDTLER liquid point .3mm pens and was very interested in them. Liquid ink pens that were German engineered with .3mm points, whats not to like? With much anticipation, I threw these into my basket with a few other things and headed for the checkout.
The STAEDTLER .3mm liquid point pens have a very appealing design with a sleek gray and silver body, and a large smooth metal clip that extends over the top of the cap where you will find a large colored oval that makes it impossible to miss what color the pen is. Once you remove the cap on the STAEDTLER pen, you will find more of the vibrantly colored plastic in the grip section to indicate what color the ink is, and although the grip lacks any texture or coating to make it easier to hold onto, its still quite a comfortable and good looking grip.
Now that I’ve found myself mostly impressed with what is proudly advertised as “Precision Engineered in Germany” I thought that it was time to get onto the writing samples where I would likely be even more impressed. I usually like pens with tips that are .5mm or less, so finding a .3mm pen that I had not used before was exciting. I was ready to write with something that I assumed would pose a challenge to my previously reviewed Uniball Signo DX .38mm and the Pentel Slicci in a .4mm.
With the first stroke of this pen I was surprised at how wide of a line it put down as compared to the Signo and the Slicci pens that I have reviewed before. The writing sample above shows the width of the line as compared to these two pens. You can clearly see that the Signo .38mm is narrower and the Slicci .4mm is pretty close to the same size line as the supposed .3mm line of the STAEDTLER. Also in the writing sample, you will notice that there is a small amount of feathering with the ink, but for some reason the black doesnt seem to do it as badly or as frequently. The two good things I can say about the writing performance of these pens is that they did dry relatively quickly, at about 3 seconds or so, and the tips wrote very smoothly with no drag or friction against the paper.
Overall it is not the first time I have been disappointed by “Gernam Engineering” but this is the first time it has happened with an office supply such as a pen. My other huge letdown was with a 1999 German engineered VW Jetta that made me insane with its poor build quality. Lucky for me this was just a pack of pens that I will never use again, and only cost about $7.00, not a $20k car that I was stuck with for years. I guess thee STAEDTLER liquid points might be ok for some, but if you are looking for a .3mm that compares well to the Uniball Signo .38mm or the Pentel Slicci .4mm, then you might want to look elsewhere.