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Cross Ballpoint Pens

still the best

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110 replies to this topic

#1 max dog

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 03:42

When it comes to ballpoint pens, I think Cross is still the best! 

 

Back in 1946 Cross nailed the perfect mechanism with the screw in ball point cartridge and twist propel/repel mechansim in the Century.

 

I can't stand the loose feeling ball point mechanism found in most ball point pens produced by others high end pen companies. Dont get me wrong, Montblanc, Parker, Sheaffer, Waterman etc may make great fountain pens, but when it comes to ball points, give me a Cross any day.  

 

 



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#2 WriteAway

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 03:57

For the most part, I agree with that! I own more than 60 Cross BPs, including the ATX, Century 1 & 2, Townsend, Metropolis, Solo, Radiance, and Century 2000 models, plus six FPs..

 

One issue I have encountered with the Century 1 BPs is that on some older pens (1980's), if the pen sits unused for long periods, the lubricant in the mechanism tends to dry up, making the pen difficult or impossible to open or close. This issue has been discussed in this subforum before. Maybe the new Chinese-made pens and the revised mechanism have fixed that.

 

Otherwise, I also find that Cross refills have for a long time, been among the better ballpoints, until the new rollerball/gel/hybrid inks came on the scene.


Edited by WriteAway, 12 May 2013 - 03:57.


#3 pajaro

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 19:50

I like the Cross jumbo ballpoint refill that fits in a Selectip.


"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

They took the blue from the skies and the pretty girls' eyes and a touch of Old Glory too . . .


#4 cuza

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 23:44

it's a US-made 18c gold Townsend BP with fine blue refill, if I had my druthers and there's no FP about.



#5 wesley.mijngheer

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 14:13

I have a Cross bailpoint lying around here somewhere ( it was part of a set with my Bailey fp ) and it think it writes quite well. When I need a ballpoint ( as some forms that sometimes need to be filled in are not fp-friendly ) I use that one ( or my mb ballpoint ). The only disadvantage of it is that it looks an awful lot like the fp so I try to pry of the cap, only to realise that it utilises a twisting mechanism  :P



#6 Raymond3

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 16:21

When it comes to ballpoint pens, I think Cross is still the best! 

 

Back in 1946 Cross nailed the perfect mechanism with the screw in ball point cartridge and twist propel/repel mechansim in the Century.

 

I can't stand the loose feeling ball point mechanism found in most ball point pens produced by others high end pen companies. Dont get me wrong, Montblanc, Parker, Sheaffer, Waterman etc may make great fountain pens, but when it comes to ball points, give me a Cross any day.  

 

 

 

 

After 50 years of trying lots and lots of pens, I do agree with you.  My American made Cross Townsends in both twist and roller ball model and of course several of the fantastic Signatures get almost 100% of my desk bp use, and have for more than a decade.  They fit, are classic, reliable and a pleasure to use. 

 

Two of my Townsends ball points though have never been used---the Lapis Lazuli model.  Just prefer the black, red, 18kt and pink models. 



#7 max dog

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Posted 25 May 2013 - 03:59

 

 

After 50 years of trying lots and lots of pens, I do agree with you.  My American made Cross Townsends in both twist and roller ball model and of course several of the fantastic Signatures get almost 100% of my desk bp use, and have for more than a decade.  They fit, are classic, reliable and a pleasure to use. 

 

Two of my Townsends ball points though have never been used---the Lapis Lazuli model.  Just prefer the black, red, 18kt and pink models. 

 

Lapis Lazuli Townsend :puddle: , lucky you. I like the Lapis Jade too.  Maybe one of these days I will get a Townsend in one of the Lapis finishes.  I have have the sterling Townsend fountain, roller, and bp that make a wonderful trio. 

 

Another great thing about Cross is there are a lot of nice colors/finishes to choose from, especially in the Townsend line, and you will never be stranded without a refill because Cross refills are so readily available in most stationery stores.  That's why my Centuries have always been my companions at work for well over 20 years.

 

There is something about the slim Century ball points with their classy elegance and distinction that I will never tire of.

 

Cross Classic Century 10 KT ballpoint.jpg



#8 pencils+pens

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Posted 25 May 2013 - 13:11

One issue I have encountered with the Century 1 BPs is that on some older pens (1980's), if the pen sits unused for long periods, the lubricant in the mechanism tends to dry up, making the pen difficult or impossible to open or close.

 

What is the fix for that condition? I have that problem with one of my Cross ballpoints now.



#9 WriteAway

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 02:03

 

What is the fix for that condition? I have that problem with one of my Cross ballpoints now.

I don't know of any one fix that really works. Suggestions have included small amounts of oil, penetrating oil in the mechanism, heating the barrel slightly to free the dried lube inside, and there are others, including just sending the pen back to Cross for repair/replacement. Here are just two threads that touch on this issue:

 

http://www.fountainp...sm#entry1669060

 

http://www.fountainp...oint +mechanism



#10 pencils+pens

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 01:38

Thanks.



#11 Vendome

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 12:22

I've only had a  couple of the cheaper Cross models, the Calais and Revere, (which was part of a set) and for the low price I found them to be decent quality pens.


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#12 Mike 59

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 18:04

Hi,  I have a small collection of recently made ballpoints, and the quality is high with all of them.

 They are all heavier than average ( good ), the chrome finish is as good as I have seen, and the twist actions are smooth, they work well for me.

 I would like the ink in the blue refills to be slightly darker, but the black is good, and I use these often.

 I wait for any sale items to appear, and only buy them then.

  I had seen the 'Stratford' in a local shop, and I waited almost a year for it to be half price, but a good size pen to use, I see it as a 'look-a-like' Century 2 !

 The order in my photo is (T to B ) Calais, Stratford, Century 3, and Classic Century.


Edited by Mike 59, 30 May 2013 - 18:38.


#13 RLTodd

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 00:25

I like the Cross jumbo ballpoint refill that fits in a Selectip.

 

Agree.  In a Century II.

 

I find the Townsend too top heavy, and the Century tends toward too thin (thou probably what most people use on a day to day basis.)


YMMV

#14 pajaro

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 06:16

I like the original Century Select Tip.  Wider than a Century ballpoint, and I've had them 37 years.


"Don't hurry, don't worry. It's better to be late at the Golden Gate than to arrive in Hell on time."
--Sign in a bar and grill, Ormond Beach, Florida, 1960.

 

They took the blue from the skies and the pretty girls' eyes and a touch of Old Glory too . . .


#15 gcouch

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Posted 04 June 2013 - 12:25

Cross pens are my first choice when it comes to non-FP writing instruments. The twist mechanism is wonderful to use, though I have encountered the problem with the mechanism drying up in my older pens as well. Thanks to the lifetime warranty, Cross replaced it at no cost and returned the original (it was 14k gold, which they no longer make). I think I'm more of a fan of their rollerballs than the BP, though there's no doubt in my mind that they're the best on the market. I have a Classic Century II that belonged to my great uncle that I use as my FP backup every day. I switched to Waterman once, and went right back to Cross. The quality of Cross just wasn't there. Unless something drastic happens at QC, I doubt I'll ever use anything but Cross for non-FP writing. I too would gladly use a Cross BP or RB any day of the week.

#16 WriteAway

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 01:44

The new Cross Click gel/rollerball is a good value for under $20 if you can comfortably work with the pen's thin barrel profile. Quality is what you'd expect in that price range, IMO.



#17 Scribero ergo sum

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 14:23

Will Cross ever create a gel-ballpoint refill? IMO, it would be superior to traditional ballpoint ink, which I've always found to be too thick and like writing with axle grease. But the other makers' gel-ballpoint refills are as smooth as a well-tuned fountain pen's performance.



#18 vinper

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 00:05

Cross Townsends are my undisputed favorites whether they are FPs or ballpoints.  As noted above there are times when a FP won't do, and on those occasions nothing beats a Cross ballpoint.  My preference is for Cross' fine point refills and I also enjoy the pencil converter units that turn the ballpoint into a pencil virtually instantly.  vinper



#19 Cartooner

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 13:02

What are these demon sticks?



#20 max dog

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 05:03

I have several Townsends, Century IIs, ATX, Signet, and 150th Anniversary ballpoints and they are wonderful too. 

 

In contrast to the slim Classic Century, I also enjoy using the fat and substantial Apogee ball point.  Fits just perfectly in the hand and feels so grand.  The clip can be a bit much at first, but I've gotten the hang of it if you pinch and lift it up in the middle, like you would with the clips on Visconti pens..


Edited by max dog, 08 June 2013 - 05:05.







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