Whiskey Barrel Pen on Kickstarter with a Curious Twist

Whiskey Barrel Pen Bolt Action

Whiskey Barrel Pen Bolt Action

I’m not the worlds most knowledgeable person when it comes to the ins and outs of Kickstarter, but finding this pen led me down an interesting path the other day.  The Whiskey Barrel pens caught my attention because I’m a big fan of wood pens as well as Jack Daniels, and although I’ve never owned a gun I have been shooting before and enjoyed it, so the grip here is kind of a cool touch which makes this a perfect storm pen for me.  As I researched a little more about the project though, I came across something odd.

Whiskey Barrel Pen

Whiskey Barrel Pen

If you read the entire Kickstarter project description, you will find that the person asking for funding also has a website that they promote on the page.  Of course I wanted to go check out their site and see what was going on there, but to my surprise I came across two of the same exact pens there on their site already for sale.  The Kickstarter project does offer multiple other variations so its not a one for one match between thier website and the Kickstarter project, but its still odd nonetheless.    I don’t know why someone would fund the project on Kickstarter and wait until August to get the pen when they could go directly to this person’s retail website and just buy the pens there.

Maybe I’m missing something but this doesn’t seem to be in the spirit of what Kickstarter is all about.  It actually turned me off a bit on picking up one of these pens now that I’ve seen this.  I was kind of hoping that this might be a once and done run for these pens making them a little more unique.  I was on the fence about posting this if its really just a miss-use of Kickstarter to promote an already existing product.  On the other hand I learn a lot and come across a lot in writing this blog that I hope I can share with all of our readers to help them make better purchase decisions, so I think that in this case its  a good lesson learned.  Although I don’t think there is any malicious intent here by the project owner, its just not what I was expecting.

©2015, Brian Greene. All rights reserved.


  1. 1
    David says:

    It looks like two of the four pen styles offered on Kickstarter are also offered for immediate purchase on ETSY. Each pen is supposedly made to order.

    I have a strong suspicion these are just kit pens. So he’s turning (or buying) a small cylinder of wood, assembling it with a purchased pen kit, then reselling the assembled pen. But I’m just speculating. The other pens on his site are clearly kit pens. I’ve seen those designs elsewhere before.

    So no, this “project” is probably not in keeping with what I think Kickstarter should be all about – but that’s just my opinion.

    Don’t get caught taking these bullet pens on an airplane or (gawd forbid) to school – otherwise they’ll probably put you in jail for having something that just looks gun-related.

    To get to the seller’s home site, click the links to his Bio on the Kickstarter page.

  2. 2
    plumskiter says:

    I’m just a little turned off (no make that a lot) by a pen based on a gun. Would never consider owning sucha travesty.

  3. 3
    less says:

    I’ve forgotten where I’ve seen the kit available for purchase, but this is a kit pen. The bolt action, along with the rest of the guts of the pen are a kit which the maker then turns a sleeve of wood/acrylic/other material to a specified size and fits it over a sleeve. The whiskey barrel blanks are also available for purchase. Again I can’t remember where I saw these available, but ti was probably in one of my late night browsing of pen turning websites.

    I will give this guy some credit, while getting a good turn on something this simple is easy, he does a very good and consistent job, at least in his photos on etsy.

    It might be that he’s trying to get a large enough order on the guts to get a better price. I know that the more you buy the better the price on them.

    Honestly, the bolt action on these is neat, but the look of the pen is a god awful mess. A plain clip would go better. There is just too much going on in this pen for me to like it.

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