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October 2, 2008

Blast from the past: World's best tiny pen


This post originally appeared nearly four years ago, on December 1, 2004.

I figure there's a whole new group out there who might never have happened on this essential item, so here's a reprise.

The only thing that's changed is the price — back then it was $1.95 but these days it'll set you back $8.49.

Here's the post.

    World's best tiny pen

    My attention was drawn to this subject by an item in the latest iteration of Kevin Kelly's "Cool Tools," a weekly email newsletter featuring all manner of interesting, oftimes very useful things you never knew existed.

    The "Ever Ready" pen (below),


    from the Derringer Wallet Pen Company, was what caught my eye.

    The fellow recommending it said he found it really handy, and that he always had something to write with since he'd started carrying this pen.

    He said the really good thing about it was that it clips into his wallet so he never has to remember where he put it.

    I investigated, and learned that the 4" long stainless steel Derringer wallet pen, available with black ink, sells for $6 on the company's website [now defunct].

    Wait a minute.

    I went downstairs and got my wallet, and measured it: it's 3.88" long.

    So this pen would protrude from my wallet.

    Unlike the pen I've got in my wallet already, which is almost invisible unless you know it's there.

    I use — and have done so for many years — a Swiss Army Knife pen refill, Victorinox model number 30422 (top).

    It costs $1.95.

    It's a replacement pen for the one that comes as original equipment in Swiss Army Knives.

    91mm (2.75") long, with a gray, curved top that fits snugly into the body of a Swiss Army Knife, these handy little pens come in blue or black ink.

    There's also an even smaller (2" long) version that fits the smaller, key-chain size knives.

    I don't recommend it because it's very difficult to grasp and write with.

    Now, you are not going to want to copy out "Moby Dick" with my little pen, but for quick notes, sudden flights of fancy or inspiration, phone numbers, and the like, you can't beat it.

    And I always have a pen.

    So often no one does, and I don't think I do, until I realize hey, I do have one.

    People smirk and scoff but they're very glad when they see it writes just fine.

    A life-saver.

    I'd always paid $3 or so for one at my local outdoor store until one day I went in to get a replacement and they were out.

    It took over six weeks for them to call and tell me that they'd gotten more in.

    By then I'd long since discovered I could get it


    faster, cheaper and easier online.

    I'm gonna send a copy of this post to Kevin Kelly to send on to the guy who tipped him off to the Derringer.

October 2, 2008 at 03:01 PM | Permalink


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That movie is fantastic, by the way. :)

Posted by: laura | Oct 2, 2008 7:09:53 PM

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