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On a lark, I picked up an interesting PILOT pen. It's some kind of micro rollerball, probably equivalent to 0.3mm or 0.5mm. PILOT made these as a series of technical pens, as an alternative to using an <XF> nib fountain pen or a stylograph. PILOT discontinued the Hi-Tecpoint line, but they did "refresh" it with their "Precise" line with V5 and V7 pen refills (0.5mm and 0.7mm respectively).

 

Anyway, while PILOT had made disposable pens that use these refill tips (incorporated into plastic bodies), there were also high quality stainless steel examples. I even saw a sterling silver one as well. What makes these rather exceptional is the tip of the pen. It has it's own "trap door" mechanism. I was able to observe this by rotating the mechanism and observing the opening end closing/opening. VERY cool! It would go a long way to help protect a refill from drying out. Also, when you install the refill, it is secured in place with a finely machined metal screw cap that "seals" it in. That must also provide some resistance to drying out.

 

Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_pen_01.jpg
Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_pen_02.jpg

 

The only caveat is... PILOT says that they no longer make the refills for this! Thankfully the example I bought came with a refill, tucked underneath the red velvet lined plastic tray in the case, still sealed. It is marked LH-25EF. The model number of this pen is LHT-300S. I contacted PILOT corporation and they do not have an equivalent replacement. I'm very dismayed by this... given how terrific the quality.

 

Now I've come to discover that sometimes there are refills that are discontinued, but because often there are plastic bits involved in the refill cartridge, it is sometimes possible to modify it to fit. I have done this a number of times with other pens. However, I don't have anything that resembles the refill requirement for this pen. And naturally, I'd prefer to use a needlepoint refill... installing a standard ballpoint would be a bit pointless (no pun intended).

 

I'll take some photos of the refill packaging and refill itself with measurements, in case it helps.

 

Does anyone here have any experience with PILOT Hi-Tecpoint pens and know of a possible refill replacement from another brand that might work, even if it requires some modifications?

Edited by MYU

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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prashant.tikekar

I have a Pilot Explorer pen which has rollerball refill which is also no longer made. It also has a plastic stopper on back just like the one in your photo. I just remove it using paper knife and fill it with few drops of pilot hi tech point ink available in 5 ml bottle here in India. (The refill has a spongy ink soaking cartridge inside similar to sketch pen.) It just works well for me. You can try this if possible.

Edited by prashant.tikekar
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^ Thanks. I looked extensively at other refills presently made that look similar... the closest is the one they use for the Tec-C. But it's not the right diameter. There is one refill that is the proper diameter, but the business end isn't shaped quite right.

 

But all is not lost, in terms of using the pen. I have a couple of PILOT pens that use the BRFN-30 (or BRFN-10F), which is a short format rollerball refill. It will fit in this Hi-Tecpoint pen with a spacer. I used the end plug from another refill (common wide Parker type) and it was a perfectly suitable spacer. Pen functioned fine and the trap door still works. It's just a shape it can't use those tremendously fine precise tipped refills.

 

I may have to see about trying to refill the refill using the method you suggest. I can't find any Pilot Tech Point ink in bottles... must be limited distribution. They do sell cartridges though. I'll have to give that a try.

Edited by MYU

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, unfortunately I've not heard back from the International group at Pilot Pen Corporation... as I expect, it's not worth their time for a discontinued pen. I guess it'll have to be a mission of experimentation, gradually over time as I discover refills of at least proper diameter... and then it becomes a game of front end shapes and length. I may just go ahead and put the only refill I have to use and then when it's exhausted, see about testing an attempt to refill it as suggested earlier.

 

My image link has been broken due to a lost image... can't edit. Posting again here:

 

Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_pen_03.jpg

 

I've discovered a Pentel needlepoint refill, the XLRN3. It seems to have the right diameter and a front section that may be compatible. The length is too long at 11.1cm, but since it is plastic I may be able to trim it to fit.

Edited by MYU

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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I have an interesting idea Pilot has a refill coded LHRF20-C4 though it seems to be a D3 like refill do you think even losing some ink capacity it will fit over the metal shell of the empty cartridge?

http://www.pilot.co.jp/products/pen/ballpen/spare/gel_ink/refill9/

the refill in question is made for the newer gen hi-techpoint pens the C slim

basically these 2

http://www.pilot.co.jp/products/pen/ballpen/multi_color/heteccslims/

Edited by Algester
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I have an interesting idea Pilot has a refill coded LHRF20-C4 though it seems to be a D3 like refill do you think even losing some ink capacity it will fit over the metal shell of the empty cartridge?

http://www.pilot.co.jp/products/pen/ballpen/spare/gel_ink/refill9/

the refill in question is made for the newer gen hi-techpoint pens the C slim

basically these 2

http://www.pilot.co.jp/products/pen/ballpen/multi_color/heteccslims/

Thank you for the idea, Algester!

The diameter does seem appropriate to get through the tip. And it might be possible to construct a "holder" for it, if the right diameter is found. Perhaps it could be possible to trim off the writing end of a refill at the base of the reservoir, and then using a drill bit make it wide enough to slide in the LHRF20 refill. It would be fun to try it out. The nice thing about this pen is that the refill chamber is capped off with a metal screw cap, rather than on a typical pen where the refill reaches back into the end of the pen. So it could work. The LHRF20 looks like it's designed for multi-pens. It would be interesting to see if there are longer equivalent refills made.

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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  • 1 month later...
I've discovered a Pentel needlepoint refill, the XLRN3. It seems to have the right diameter and a front section that may be compatible. The length is too long at 11.1cm, but since it is plastic I may be able to trim it to fit.

Well, sadly it didn't work. The XLRN3 diameter is 6.0mm. Despite PILOT claiming that their BRFN-30 is 6.0mm in diameter, it actually fit the Hi-Tecpoint. But it must be slightly more narrow, as the Pentel XLRN3 was just a tad bit too wide. This pen seems to require 5.5mm. A real shame, as this refill was a PERFECT shoe-in for the original. Thankfully it fits in place of the Pilot G2, so I was able to install the XLRN3 into a Rotring 600 Rollerball. I have to say that 0.3mm precision is very nice, akin to an <EF> nib. Anyway... I don't want to resort to putting in just a normal 1.0 or 0.7mm ballpoint in the Hi-Tecpoint. It deserves a 0.5mm at the minimum, 0.3mm preferred. I may have to try that concept of cutting a dried out LH-25EF refill and inserting a thin refill into it.

Edited by MYU

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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**** Stan **** can you please move this to the "It Writes, But It Is Not A Fountain Pen" sub section? While this pen is from Japan, it feels like this section is supposed to house topics only about fountain pens. Thanks!

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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  • 1 month later...
Reviving this topic that I started last year.


Sometime in the 1990's, PILOT released a really nice steel pen called the "Hi-Tecpoint." That model line still exists today, but in a different fashion -- plastic rollerball pens. Some are disposable and some take cartridges. But in the 1990's, they had a higher end model made of all stainless steel, that was priced at 3,000 JPY. The really cool thing about it is that this pen had a special double-door in the front tip that would help keep the refill from drying out. This pen came with a fine precision gel tip, and in the two examples I've gotten they were 0.25mm. The trouble is, that unique refill model was discontinued. I looked and looked... couldn't find a suitable replacement. Even contacted PILOT to find out more. But then, I decided to give ballpoint refills a try. You can get them in extra fine sizes. I found one made by PILOT and another by LAMY. I was actually impressed with the quality of the ink and the fine grade of the line. But it wasn't easy to get them to work. I had to do some tricks (below).


Here's what the pen looks like up close:

Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_pens-01.jpg


You extend and retract the tip by rotating the back end of the pen clockwise or counter-clockwise.

Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_open-close.jpg


As you can see, in the closed position the refill is protected. Because these refills are ballpoints, there's not much risk of them drying out... but I have occasionally found ballpoints needing just a little priming. This protection helps eliminate that.


Here's the two different refill scenarios I came up with:

Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_refill-mods.jpg


For the PILOT BRFN-30EF, I had to apply aluminum tape to the shoulders of the refill so that it wouldn't slide too far out the front. The trick was getting the spacer cut to the right length. I'd gone through a number of them... then found this one piece from a dried out refill that fit tightly into the refill chamber screw cap, so I could nudge or pull on it until I got the best fit.

For the LAMY M22, the refill cap that came with it was nearly perfect. I just had to trim it a little. Obviously its short stubby appearance means less ink than your usual refill, but at the rate I'd use it this isn't a problem.


You can see the original refill earlier in the topic [LINK].


I discovered that Pentel makes an EnerGel refill model XLRN3, which is 0.3mm. It's amazingly thin and seems to match this one. Unfortunately, it just won't fit into the Hi-Tecpoint pen. So I have that installed in a different pen (rOtring 600).


It was very rewarding to get this discontinued and essentially "worthless" PILOT Hi-Tecpoint pen working once more. I'd gotten these two examples rather inexpensively, because of this refill issue. The quality is just superb. And I like how it has this very cool "stealth" feature of a door in the tip. PILOT made something similar with the Vanishing Point, which uses a single spring loaded trap door. The Hi-Tecpoint uses two separate doors that "meet in the middle" to close off the tip. There must be metal arms from those that extend down to the rotating piece that drives the refill up and down.


Pilot_Hi-_Tecpoint_pens-02.jpg

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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Thanks, I appreciate your effort to help! But unfortunately, these refills are too wide. They're pretty much 6mm in diameter, whereas the need is to be more narrow. If there was some convenient way to use a little lathe on it and shave down the tube, it might actually work.

[MYU's Pen Review Corner] | "The Common Ground" -- Jeffrey Small

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