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OXO Good Grips™ Retractable Ballpoint Pen, Black 2/Pack


Last December Office Supply Geek wrote a fantastic review of OXO Good Grips™ Retractable Ballpoint Pen, sold exclusively at Staples. At the time, my local Staples was still not carrying the item, so I despite being fairly interested in the product I wasn’t able to get my hands on one immediately after reading OSG’s review.

Time, as it often does, got away from me and I kind of forgot about the pens I had so desperately wanted to snag and moved on to other things. Then something interesting happened: last Sunday I replaced the “secret weapon”/subject of my pen thief post who couldn’t make it to his twice monthly trivia brunch. Not only did my team finally beat those smug opponents, but my three teammates gave me the prize – a $100 gift card to Staples! So brace yourself for a host of reviews on products purchased with my winnings. When I first pulled the product out of the package its barrel design reminded me of Sharbo X, but exhale; I didn’t have my glasses on and this pen ain’t no dupe for the Sharbo X. This product is not a multipen! It is, however, a fairly decent ballpoint pen. I am not usually a fan of retractable pens and the OXO Good Grips™ Retractable Ballpoint Pen’s mechanism does nothing to make me a convert. Sports fans, I am not a delicate flower when it comes pens, with a long history of breaking numerous pens by getting a tad overzealous with the twisting mechanism. That said, there’s nothing particularly tricky about the twisting mechanism here and if you like that style of pen you’ll be pleased with its performance in this case. The barrel is all black, which I love, and seems to be a bit duplicitous material wise. The top portion of the pen is the hard plastic of many pens, but the bottom part is cushy goodness, which apparently Good Grips™ is known for. I don’t have a lot to say about the cushy goodness, except my hand felt wonderful using the pen, though I wondered how durable the cushy goodness will be if the pen makes it into heavy rotation. The ink is ballpoint and the pen is hackable/refillable. The pen writes fine and looks pretty nice in the hand, though I’ll be honest, I wasn’t entirely wowed over by its design. I had hoped for a thicker barrel to distinguish the pen from similar models that are much cheaper. While I scored mine for 50% off, even at $3.74, it still seems a bit pricey, it wasn’t exactly an instant favorite. Most likely, I’ll probably pass these onto my boyfriend who will probably think they’re pretty snazzy.

The Bottom Line:

  • Nice sleek design
  • hackable
  • steady ink flow
  • comfortable grip provides great writing experience
  • a bit pricey, normally $7.00
  • barrel too thin for my tastes
  • comes in black or blue ballpoint ink.
5 Comments leave one →
  1. 10/19/2010 7:59 pm

    One thing I like about this pen is I still occasionally tuck clip ballpoints in my pocket. Because this one retracts when the clip is exposed, it saves me from the inkstain that otherwise threatens to expose my geekery and ruin my clothing.

  2. Dan permalink
    10/23/2010 6:36 pm

    I didn’t like how the plastic pocket clip literally pops off of the pen if only moderate pressure is applied… kind of cheap if you ask me.

    And how thick do you need your pens!? I’ve tried this pen myself and it’s already on the thick side of the normal range of pen grip diameters… If you like something obnoxiously thick, go try a pilot dr. grip. They have a very over-sized grip in my opinion.

    One of the most popular model pens in the US is the pilot G2 pen. Most pens are either right on par with the diameter of the G2’s grip or somewhere in between the G2 and the Bic round stic as far as pen diameters are concerned.

  3. 10/24/2010 2:42 am

    And how thick do you need your pens!? I’ve tried this pen myself and it’s already on the thick side of the normal range of pen grip diameters… If you like something obnoxiously thick, go try a pilot dr. grip. They have a very over-sized grip in my opinion.

    The Lamy Vista Clear is around the barrel gauge I tend to like the best. My least favorite pen is – wait for it – the pilot G2. I like the ink, but not the barrel design, shape or size.

    I expected the good grip to be a tad bigger because I assumed the barrel would be thicker, similar to their kitchenware, which is clunkier and designed for ease of use. Thanks for checking out my blog and commenting!!!

  4. Howard Richard permalink
    11/06/2010 2:11 am

    Well, I too just got these after being curious; got a Staples “Rewards Premier” coupon for a pair of em at 30% off (and they were already on sale…) so I tried it. Agreed with you and OSG–too flimsy for the price; grip is a bit grippy but way too hard (why does it feel soft to others? just feels matted to me- though I AM one of those who likes the Dr Grip COG double thick grip…). And writing I thought was ordinary and for a pen posted at 1.0mm point, I thought it wrote MUCH more like a fine point. I wouldn’t be buying more, I don’t think.


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