This is a real pocket pen - small and lightweight. When closed, it is a petite 9.5cm
With the cap on, the pen from cap to nib becomes a regular 14cm. The barrel diameter is approx. 0.8cm
I don't have a scale to measure its weight but I can say that it is light but not feather weight - it has a nice feel to it.
Some says the pen is made by Ohto and has a marked resemblance to the Tasche.
But with its no decoration design, it is definitely distinctly Muji.
I used to work with a Muji 'pioneer' (Muji started out as a house brand of Seiyu Japan.) According to him, the Muji approach is to allow the user to personalise the item hence the item is often kept free of "embellishments". For eg, a baby bib will be without decoration so as to allow the mother to sew hers on it. Muji designers do not use Zen or Minimalism as a design framework although such becomes its perception in the West.
This is a photo from another website showing the similarity between Muji and Ohto (the author has a white aluminum one)
Quality of material
For about USD 20+ , this pen is well made for its value. The finishing is of good quality, very even and no rough edges.
The clip is matted black unlike the body which has a sheen.
I tried to clip the pen on my thin cotton blouse (incidentally also Muji). The clip holds the pen well.
Feel and balance
As mentioned, this is a light pocket pen. It may be a little too light for some people who prefer weighty pens.
But it works fine for me. The only qualm I have is that the cap is longer than the barrel. So to remove the cap, (if you are using a one hand operation), I need to turn the pen with the cap facing down before pulling the barrel up. This is the opposite action for most other pens.
Initially, I thought that this pen will write fine like extra fine (as with most Japanese pens). However, I am pleasantly surprised how much ink flows through the nib. The writing is dark and smooth (see picture below). It definitely writes better than my scratchy Murex (see picture below) - although I suspect that the Murex might not be functioning properly. I am getting another one to try out.
I tried to write both English and Japanese and both looks like my usual handwriting - good!
This pen uses a tiny cartridge and some says that the Ohto one works too although I haven't tried out it out myself.
Since Muji cartridges are expensive (about $1.10 for only 2 pcs), I guess I have to resort to filling the ink DYI,
I also bought myself a Muji pen tray (also in aluminum). It looks sleek (the photo does not do any justice)
I bought an extra one in white - if anyone wants it, please let me know (it goes for $10) (see the last photo. The white one shows a little on second pic on right )
I also bought a bunch of Muji notebooks and paper to try out - I guess I will be spending the next few weeks experimenting with the new "toys". My first try tells me that Muji paper appears to be working better than Moleskine. At least the ink don't seep through the pages.
On the whole, this is a value for money pen. Most importantly, it writes well though remaining understated in the looks department.
I shall be carrying the pen around next week and update my review if there is anything new.
<Note> Apologies for some photos which may look a bit off focus.
Edited by Getsurin, 05 September 2008 - 18:05.