Schön DSGN Pen Review

Ian Schön has many lovely variations of his pen but this is the basic model: the Classic. They’re manufactured in small batches in Massachusetts.

Price: $60 for this version
Ink type: ballpoint
Barrel options: polished aluminium, black anodised aluminium (this one); brass, steel, copper and titanium available at extra cost; clip available at extra cost
Refill options: Fisher Space Pen as standard; adapter for D1 refills available at extra cost
Size: 10cm (4”) closed, 14cm (5.75”) posted, 1.2cm (0.5”) diameter
Weight: 28g (1oz) (aluminium) up to 88g (3.1oz) (copper)

The design is simple and, to my eye, elegant. There are nice touches, such as the rings around the end of the cap which gives the pen a certain symmetry when capped, due to the threads at the end of the barrel, but it’s basically a simple metal tube.

As I’ve written many times before, when a design is this simple it’s important it’s executed well. With this pen, it is. Despite its light weight it feels robust. The cap screws to close and to post smoothly and securely. The tolerances are very fine. It feels, in every way, like a pen that’s been made with care and attention.

It’s quite a compact pen when capped and when uncapped but not posted it’s a little too short for my hands, except for the briefest of notes. However, when posted it’s a good comfortable length. The grip section is smooth, so might be too slippery for some, though I’ve not had any issues. It’s also long, which means the threads are well out of the way of your fingers, which is a good thing.

The included refill is a Fisher Space Pen unit. This means you ought to be able to write upside down, in space, under water or at the top of the mountain. I’ve not tested this out. However, in normal use, it’s a fairly average ballpoint and not something I’d choose to write with often. For quick notes, though, it’s fine. It’s possible to buy a converter so the pen can use D1 refills, which opens a whole range of options.

I like this pen a lot. It’s simple, it’s comfortable to use and it’s beautifully made.

Pros

Excellent manufacturing
Elegant design
Comfortable to write with

Cons

Not keen on the included refill

5 Comments

  1. This looks a great pen Ian, however I’m disappointed you haven’t tried it out upside down, underwater, in space or at the top of a mountain!!!

  2. If you are lucky, you might find some that Ian has done with vibrant colors on the barrel. He says those usually go to sellers in Japan, but he often has some with him at shows.

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