The Epic Refill Reference Guide: Rollerball, Gel and Ballpoints

Lots of pens available these days accept either a “Parker-Style” G2 refills, a Pilot G2 refill (adds to the confusion for sure) and the Pilot Hi-Tec C style refills.  I thought I’d try to come up with a list of refills that fit into these categories. This is by no means a definitive list but should provide you with lots of options for your favorite non-fountain pens.

parker style refills

There are so many potential options for a “Parker-style” refill (which annoyingly enough is also referred to as a G2 though it is not necessarily compatible with a PILOT G2 style pen). The G2 refill is 98mm long and approx 5.8mm diameter on the main barrel.

Parker Style Refills

Here’s a list of most (but probably not all) of the Parker-style refills:

  • Diplomat EasyFLOW Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Faber-Castell Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Faber-Castell Scribero Gel Ink Roller Refill
  • Fisher Space Pen Refill, PR Series- Colors (Bold, Medium, Fine)
  • Fisher Space Pen – Universal Ballpoint Refill
  • Foray (Office Depot) Ballpoint Refill for Parker (Medium)
  • Kaweco Soul G2 Refill 1.0mm
  • Kaweco Sport Roller Ball Pen Refill
  • Moleskine Ballpoint Refill
  • Moleskine Gel Refill (0.5 and 0.7 mm)
  • Moleskine Roller Gel Fluorescent Refills
  • Monteverde Ceramic Gel Refill (Broad)
  • Monteverde Needle Point Refill (Fine)
  • Monteverde Soft Roll- Colored inks (Medium)
  • Monteverde Soft Roll- (Superbroad, Medium, Ultrafine)
  • OHTO Needlepoint Ballpoint Pen Refill PS-807NP
  • OHTO PS-205NP Extra-Fine 0.5mm Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Parafernalia Ballpoint Pen Refill NO LOGO
  • Parker Ballpoint Pen Refill (Broad, Medium, Fine)
  • Parker GEL Ballpoint Pen Refill (Medium)
  • Parker Quinkflow Ballpoint Pen Refill (Medium, Fine)
  • Pelikan Giant Ballpoint Pen Refill 337 (Broad, Fine, Medium)
  • Pentel KFLT8 Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Platignum Standard Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Retro 51 Tornado Roller Ball Refills (REF5P) (Made by Schmidt)
  • Schmidt 9000M EasyFlow Pen Refill
  • Schmidt P8126 Capless Rollerball (Fine)
  • Schmidt P8900 Super Bowl Refill (Fine)
  • Schmidt P900 B Ballpoint Pen Refill (Broad, Medium, Fine)
  • Schmidt P950M Megaline Pressurized Ballpoint Pen Refill (Medium)
  • Schneider Express 735 Pen Refill (Broad, Medium, Fine)
  • Schneider Slider 755 Pen Refill (Extra-Broad, Medium)
  • STABILO EASYgel Refill
  • Stabilo Ballpoint Refill
  • Tombow BR-ZLM Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Visconti Ballpoint Pen Refill AA49 1.4 (Broad)
  • Visconti Gel Refill (Broad, Medium, Fine)

Retro 1951 + Pentel EnerGel Refill Hacking

Mike Rohde of Sketchnoting fame hacked a Pentel Energel refill (normally a Pilot G-2 sized refill) to fit into his Retro 51 by trimming the end of the refill to be the right size. If you’re willing to experiment, other refills might also survive this sort of hack. I’ve hacked the end off a few refills in my time to make them fit as well. Just grab a craft or utility knife or a sturdy pair of scissors, line up the old refill and the new refill and snip. Voila.

If you love a particular sort of pen refill, you can also lengthen a refill that’s too short by adding a bit of plastic tubing to the end of the barrel. The fine folks at Karas Kustoms provide a length of plastic tubing with their Render K, RETRAKT and BOLT pens that could be used with other brands as well or you could snip off a section of an empty plastic refill to length a new refill to fit.

The best source I found for ALL the Parker-style refills was Cult Pens in the UK. They stock over 30 different styles of Parker-style refills.  Another option is Refill Finder.


European International Rollerball / Pilot G-2 style refills

G2/Schmidt/Euro Rollerball (and similar) Refills:

The Pilot G2 style refill, also described as the Schmidt/Euro Rollerball refill size are about 110mm long:

  • Caran d’Ache Fibre Tip Refill
  • Caran d’Ache Rollerball Refill
  • Faber-Castell Rollerball Pen Refill
  • Faber-Castell Fineliner Pen Refill
  • FORAY (Office Depot) Pen Refill For Schmidt Rollerball
  • Kaweco “soul” refill G2
  • Kaweco G2 Gel Roller Pen Refill
  • Hi-Tec-C Cavalier refill
  • Monteverde Fineliner Refill G52
  • Monteverde Ceramic Rollerball Refill W22
  • Monteverde Spring-Loaded Tip Fineliner Refill G62
  • OHTO Ceramic Rollerball Pen Refill
  • OHTO F-300 Fude Refill Black
  • Pentel LR7 Energel
  • Pilot Frixion Erasable Gel
  • Pilot Juice (removed from plastic retractable pen)
  • Pilot G2
  • Pilot LP2RF Gel Refill (Juice refill code)
  • Schmidt Capless Rollerball 8126 and 8127 (shorter models can work with an extension hack)
  • Schmidt FineLiner refill
  • Schmidt Safety Rollingball Ceramic refill
  • Schmidt Safety Rolling Tube refill
  • Schmidt RollingSupersteel refill
  • Schmidt RollingBall refill
  • Schneider Topball 850 Pen Refill
  • Schneider Topliner 970 Pen Refill
  • Sheaffer Fineliner Refill
  • Visconti Rollerball Pen Refill AA40 0.7
  • Zebra JT refill
  • Zebra Sarasa Clip refill (removed from plastic retractable pen)

Using a spring around the tip of the refill will help to stabilize these. Use either the spring provided by your pen manufacturer or steal one from a retractable plastic pen body to get the perfect fit.

Cult Pens has a great selection of these refills in their “Euro Refills” section.

HI Tec C style refills

Pilot Hi-Tec C Refills:

The Pilot Hi-Tec C style refills list doesn’t look as extensive as the other refill styles but the Hi-Tec C line has a huge assortment of color options and tip widths to provide quite a variety. The Pilot Hi-Tec C refills can be purchased individually or liberated from any Pilot Hi-Tec C pen including the Maica line.

  • Pilot Hi-Tec C (available in 0.25, 0.3, 0.4, 0.5)
  • Pilot G-Tec C (same as the Hi-Tec C but renamed for the American/European market)
  • Uni-ball Signo UM-100 Gel
  • Uni-ball Signo DX UM-151 Gel
  • Uni-ball Signo Broad UM-153 Gel

I’ve found that the Uni-Ball Signo refills may need to be trimmed slightly to fit but they work great. Just use scissors, a craft knife or blade to shorten the length to match the original length. I liberate Signo refills from plastic pens found around my office as well as occasionally purchasing proper refills.

D1 Refills:

D1 style refills

Then there’s the D1 sized refills. These are the super slender and used in multi-pens and mini pens. The Sharbo-X is a great example as is the Retro 51 Tornado Touch.

The D-1 mini refills are about 66-67mm long and there are quite a few refill styles to fit into these pens:

  • Acme Black 4FP Four-Function Pen Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Acme Highlighter 4FP Four-Function Pen Multi Functional Pen Refill
  • Aurora Mini Medium Point Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Caran D’ache Ecridor XS Mini Refill
  • Cross Matrix Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Cross Micro Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Kaweco D1 Soul Ballpoint Refill
  • Monteverde Soft Roll Ballpoint Pen Refill – D1 (628)
  • Ohto R-4C7NP Needle-Point Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Parker Mini Ballpoint Refills
  • Parker Vector 3-in-1 Ballpoint Refills
  • Pelikan 38 Ballpoint Refills
  • Pilot BRF-8M Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Platinum BSP-60 Series
  • Platinum BSP-100
  • Retro 1951 D-1 Ballpoint Refill
  • Rotring Tikky 3-in-1 2-Color Ballpoint Refills
  • Tombow VS Ballpoint Pen Refill – D1
  • Uni SXR-200 Jetstream Ballpoint Multi Pen Refill (0.5 and 0.7mm)
  • Zebra 4C-0.7 Ballpoint Pen Refill
  • Zebra Sharbo X Ballpoint Multi Pen Refill Component – D1
  • Zebra Sharbo X Gel Ink Multi Pen Refill Component – D1

Big thank you to Dan at Karas Kustoms for giving me his list as a starting point. Thanks to The Pen Place in Kansas City for letting me try out lots of refills. The rest of my info came from Jet Pens, Cult Pens and Refill Finder.

Monteverde is modifying some of their refills to fit pens with more proprietary sizes like Lamy. Lamy is the most finicky of all the pens. If you have good alternatives for refills for Lamy rollerball and ballpoint pens, let me know.

Don’t forget to check your local office supply or pen store (even those big box shops) and play around with the pens and refills you have. You’d be surprised what might work.

I’m working on a handy printable pocket guide of all these pen refill options but I want to make sure I haven’t left anything out or gotten anything wrong. So let me know which of these refills work for you and which don’t.

Note: I have not tried EVERY refill with every pen so your results might vary. Please leave notes in the comments about your favorite pen and refill combination for other readers. Thanks!


98 Comments on The Epic Refill Reference Guide: Rollerball, Gel and Ballpoints

  1. Malisa
    June 27, 2014 at 9:46 am (2 years ago)

    Ahhhh, that explains so much. I have a Staples brand version of Dr.Grip and could not find the right refill. This post is genius. Thank you!

    • Henri L
      August 18, 2014 at 7:24 pm (1 year ago)

      Greetings, could someone please direct me to where I could find a 95 mm (3.75 “) refill for my favorite Waterman twist fine ballpoint pen? It is of 1981/82 vintage. Thank you for your help!

  2. Doug Lane (@ModernStationer)
    June 27, 2014 at 10:11 am (2 years ago)

    Thanks for this – what an amazing resource! That said, you’re kind of torturing me by posting this the Friday before I have a crazy weekend of birthday parties, out-of-town visitors, etc. Need time to strategize now!

  3. Bob Corrigan (@bobcorrigan)
    June 27, 2014 at 11:18 am (2 years ago)

    WELL DONE. This post is destined to be referenced from every corner of the interwebs.

  4. Gerry G
    June 27, 2014 at 3:31 pm (2 years ago)

    Favorite pen hack: Pilot G2 refill in a Kaweco Rollerball pen – the ultimate pocket pen for Pilot G2 fans.

    • colddonuthole
      May 14, 2015 at 6:49 pm (9 months ago)

      This is genius! I’m trying it tonight!

  5. Pete Denison
    June 27, 2014 at 11:24 pm (2 years ago)

    I was only thinking the other day there needs to be a reference out there such as this. Thanks for putting in the hard work to create it Ana – just fantastic.

  6. creativityinthebox
    June 28, 2014 at 11:28 am (2 years ago)

    You are so my favourite. I’ve been struggling to find a pen to go with the magenta Pilot style refills I bought on impulse, but gave up when I kept buying pens the wrong size for them. Now I know which size it is, it’ll be a lot easier to narrow down my hunt. I hope. Thanks!

  7. creativityinthebox
    June 28, 2014 at 11:29 am (2 years ago)

    Reblogged this on Creativity In The Box and commented:
    Rollerball refills are a vexation unto man. Now they don’t need to be, thanks to the Well Appointed Desk, who you should all be following anyway.

  8. Carl
    June 29, 2014 at 2:06 pm (2 years ago)

    Pilot G2s and RT V5s fit Lamy Safari and Tipos, as well as the Monteverde Artista, Acme Studio, and Libelle Sienna rollerballs. Fisher Space pen refills fit Zebra F-701. My favorite hack is a Uniball Signo .38mm refill in a Retro 51 Tornado.

    • The Well-Appointed Desk
      June 29, 2014 at 4:17 pm (2 years ago)

      I’m going to go try the Signo hack in my Retro 51 right now! Thanks for the tip!

    • Steve
      April 11, 2015 at 6:21 am (10 months ago)

      Is that the retractable version of the Signo .38 or the stick version?

      • Ana
        April 11, 2015 at 8:54 am (10 months ago)

        Steve, I think its the same refill in both models. I’m pretty sure I’ve swapped between the two pen bodies in the past.

        • Steve
          April 13, 2015 at 8:54 am (10 months ago)

          When I compare the two, the stick version is longer than the retractable and the section between the pen tip and the tank is shorter. When you use the Signo .38 refill (whichever one it is) is there any cutting or trimming involved (maybe a question for Carl)? The Uni-ball Signo is my all time favorite pen and I would love to get it into a nicer pen body than the plastic one it comes in, and I’ve always liked the looks of the Retro 51 Tornado, so I will be thrilled if this hack works. I would just like to know for sure before I order the Retro 51 (since I don’t have one handy).

  9. Tim W
    July 1, 2014 at 1:46 pm (2 years ago)

    What an amazingly helpful post, Ana. Thank you! Where does the Signo 207 refill fit in here?

    • The Well-Appointed Desk
      July 1, 2014 at 5:38 pm (2 years ago)

      It looks to be consistent with the Pilot G-2/European rollerball size. So it should fit in anything that takes a standard rollerball refill or Pilot G-2 style.

  10. Andrew Young (@atmozap)
    July 7, 2014 at 3:14 pm (2 years ago)

    Thanks for the informative post! Since reading this I’ve modified a purple Pentel LR7 refill for my Retro51 – I had to tape the Schmidt end piece to it so it would retract correctly. I also bought 2 Schmidt Fineliner refills (hadn’t been able to find fineliners since Monteverde stopped making them) and put them in a Faber-Castell pen and a Parker Frontier. The latter is now a budget-priced Parker 5th technology of sorts. It also required some scotch tape padding around the barrel and end, as the normal Parker rollerball refill is quite a different shape.

      • larry english
        July 29, 2014 at 12:48 pm (2 years ago)

        the ohto probably does but it is over $10 for one on amazon, plus shipping!

        pilot, would have to try it, but the final tip has to be very very thin
        ”needlepoint” they call it


        • Ana
          July 30, 2014 at 10:24 am (2 years ago)

          It looks like Jet Pens might stock what you need. Try this one, and if you order $25 or more, shipping is free.

  11. jmreekes
    September 5, 2014 at 11:26 am (1 year ago)

    I was doing some experimenting with the P8126 for a friend trying to find compatible pens and discovered it fits Lamy rollerball pens, like the Al Star

    For Lamy rollerballs, the Schmidt P8126 (Tornado refill) will fit with a spacer as a replacement for the M62/63 and seems to work fine for the M66 for the Lamy retractable pens. The longer Schmidt 8126 is the same length as the M66 so it might work as a drop-in replacement, but the longer 8126 is still shorter than the M62/63 so a spacer would still be needed.

    The Schmidt 8126/P8126 is a way better refill than the M62/63 and M66.

    • jmreekes
      November 29, 2014 at 10:06 am (1 year ago)

      Just wanted to post a quick update about the Schmidt P8126 and Lamy rollerballs. The Schmidt P8126 will NOT for the Lamy 2000 rollerball. The P8126 is too fat. Any Pilot G2 sized refill will also fit Lamy Rollerballs, again using a spacer to fill in the backspace.

  12. jadekraut
    October 9, 2014 at 2:30 pm (1 year ago)

    Have I missed something, or do the words “Parker Rollerball” never appear in the article? From it appears that Sheaffer rollerball refills are the same size, but little else, without using a spacer.

    • Ana
      October 9, 2014 at 4:11 pm (1 year ago)

      You are correct. I don’t think I listed Parker Rollerballs in the refill guide. I’ll try to remedy that at some point. The Parker Rollerball refill seems to be a very specific size according to their web site. Very unfortunate.

      • jadekraut
        December 1, 2014 at 12:52 pm (1 year ago)

        A medium refill came with the Parker Rollerball. The line produced while writing was way too wide for me, so I purchased an official refill, which Parker called “Fine.” Even that line was too thick for my liking, so I bought Pilot VBall XFine refills (I had been using VBall throw-aways), anticipating that I would need a spacer & a bit of tape toward the bottom of the refill to assure a tighter fit. It’s worked even better than I had thought! Without any spacer at all, with simply an inch or so of tape (I used clear) wrapped near the bottom of the refill, things are snug, rattle-free, and the extra fine line allows for even small printing. Excellent!

        • jadekraut
          December 18, 2014 at 8:51 am (1 year ago)

          Update: after 2 weeks of use, the tape I put toward the bottom still kept things snug, but the cartridge moved and so a spacer was needed. I used part of the cap that came with the Parker refill, i.e., I trimmed about 2-3mm off the open end of the cap. It fit very well onto the end of the VBall refill and I will just need to transfer that spacer to any other VBall refill that I use.

  13. dhruv dayal gupta
    October 31, 2014 at 1:21 am (1 year ago)

    Mont Blanc refills are about 122mm long. is there a standardized name for them like for the D1 refills? i’d like to try some other rollerball refills in my starwalker and meisterstuck series. Please help

    • jmreekes
      October 31, 2014 at 7:53 am (1 year ago)

      I think they’re referred to as Mont Blanc style refills. Monteverde refills are nice.

      • jmreekes
        October 31, 2014 at 8:11 am (1 year ago)

        I know Mont Blanc refills have some threads near the tip of the refill to screw the refill into the pen. Pilot G2, Pilot Juice, Schmidt 888 and the other rollerball & Pilot G2 refills listed in the article are shorter than Mont Blanc refills but are the same size in every other way but they do not have the threads. Normally I would say cut a spacer to fill in the backspace and you would be good to go, but I don’t know how well the non-Mont Blanc style refills would work with out the threading.

        An easy and cheap way to experiment would be to pick a pack of Pilot G2 refills (because they are readily available almost everywhere and are cheap) and see if they would be useable in your pens without the refills having the threading. As far as making a spacer, small plastic tubing is ideal, IMO, (like the back part of cheap ballpoint pen refill) though anything that could be cut down to fit should work.

      • dhruv
        January 4, 2015 at 8:22 am (1 year ago)

        I checked some reviews on amazon that are both verified and negative. More than one person complaining that they are dry when they arrive

        • jmreekes
          January 4, 2015 at 9:14 am (1 year ago)

          Monteverde makes a nice Month Blanc style rollerball refill.

        • jmreekes
          January 4, 2015 at 10:49 am (1 year ago)

          Ignore my comment from earlier. Brain-lapse. I haven’t ordered any of the refills from Amazon but the ones I have used have been nice.

  14. Greg Hutchings
    November 3, 2014 at 4:22 am (1 year ago)

    Is there a space pen refill that would take the place of a uniball signo 207?

    • Ana
      November 3, 2014 at 11:51 am (1 year ago)

      The Uni Power Tank refills might be a good substitute. The Power Tank pens are pressurized for extreme writing conditions and look to be a standard European/Pilot G-2 size. At $1.65 per refill, its probably a safe gamble to try one and see if it works. Please drop me a line if it works and I’ll add it to the refill list.

  15. Roger Dowdy
    January 3, 2015 at 11:57 am (1 year ago)

    I’m a convert to really bold point gel pens I have a few nice Waterman ballpoint pens and would like to convert them to gel bold pens. I think that Monteverde is making a fine point gel refill that will work in a Waterman ballpoint pen. Anyone know of a bold point refill or a hack of another type so I can rescue my nice Waterman ballpoints?

    Thanks Everyone

  16. davidrea
    January 10, 2015 at 10:32 pm (1 year ago)

    Wow…inkredible! One lineup of Parker-style refills to add would be those by Itoya:

  17. jmreekes
    January 11, 2015 at 12:10 pm (1 year ago)

    I just picked up a Lamy Studio rollerball and the Schmidt p8126 refill will fit it, with a spacer to fill in the backspace.

  18. millicent
    January 11, 2015 at 4:34 pm (1 year ago)

    visualising Wayne & Garth bowing “Not Worthy”
    so much good info from you and your followers
    makes the reuse, repurpose, recycle concept so real :)

  19. Therese Karlin
    January 25, 2015 at 5:25 pm (1 year ago)

    FYI–I have a Zebra Tele-scopic pen and want several black refills for as low a price as I can get. I think the pen comes with a 1.00 (medium) point. Refills are 2 5/8″ long and come in black, red or blue ink, and .07 (fine) point or medium point. These slim refills fit multi color pens, too. Many places sell the Zebra brand 4C 2-pack of fine point–Amazon, eBay, They fit Zebra’s Tele-scopic, Styluspen, and Twist. I searched “mini pen refill” on eBay and found those, plus listings for 5- or 10-piece lots of generic medium point refills, and for Zebra fine point refills.

    Schmidt makes a fine point refill: the barrel says 628 F. The model numbers are 62811 (black ink), 62812 (blue ink), 62813 (red.) I could not find this model on any site but eBay. That listing says it fits: Aldo Domani®, Aurora®, Bexley®, Bossert & Erhard®, Colibri®, Delta®, Diplomat®, Elysee®, Faber-Castell®, Inoxcrom®, Jean Pierre Lepine®, Krone®, Marlen®, Montegrappa®, Monteverde®, Nettuno®, Omas®, Pelikan®, Retro 51®, Rotring®, Sensa®, Stipula®, Visconti®, Yafa®”

    Some websites say the Schmidt 635M (on the barrel of the refill) replaces 62811, but the M means medium point. People on Amazon were frustrated at ordering the pen and getting medium point (wanting fine) or ordering the refills and getting fine point (wanting medium.)

    Anyway, it was a long surf to find this out. Hope you add it to your guide and that it helps others.

  20. matthewhsu
    February 10, 2015 at 12:53 pm (1 year ago)

    Great resource. Thank you for putting in the time to compile this.

  21. Steve
    April 11, 2015 at 6:18 am (10 months ago)

    I picked up a Franklin Covey retractable ballpoint refill at Staples to try in my Parker Jotter. Fits perfectly, writes smoothly and lays down a nice dark line. I wasn’t expecting much but have been very impressed.

    • Steve
      April 13, 2015 at 8:47 am (10 months ago)

      A followup on this refill. It looks great, but doesn’t start up right away, so that’s a little irritating.

  22. Jo Mac
    April 12, 2015 at 3:30 pm (10 months ago)

    Can someone tell me HOW to “liberate” the refill from a Uniball Signo, please? Thanks!

    • Ana
      April 12, 2015 at 5:16 pm (10 months ago)

      Twist at the metal cone just above the tip of the pen. It should untwist so that you can remove the refill. If its sticking, try using a rubber band around the metal part to give you a little grip.

  23. Paul
    April 20, 2015 at 6:53 am (10 months ago)


    I have a lot of Parker rollerballs and love using their green refills as I do a lot of compliance review work in my job. I had a stock of 20 and am down to my final two but have now established that Parker no longer make green RB refills.

    Can anyone suggest a workable alternate to try in the Parker RBs I have?

    Many thanks.

    • Ana
      April 21, 2015 at 2:14 pm (10 months ago)

      Check out the Refill Finder guide by size. I suspect its probably a Parker sized refill and I believe Monetverde makes a green ballpoint refill but double check the site for size compatibility. Best of luck!

    • Ana
      April 23, 2015 at 12:41 pm (10 months ago)

      While I was unable to locate any green refills, it looks like Monteverde has been making refills for Parker Rollerballs. Is this the size and shape you use? These are available in blue, black or blue/black and are labelled “fine point”.

  24. Seshat
    May 4, 2015 at 11:24 am (9 months ago)

    I have another sort of dilemma: I came upon some Sanford No 51413 refills and liked them. Now I’m looking for pens that I could use these with and can’t find any resources the would match a certain refill with the proper pen. Would anybody be able to help me with that?

    • ashokdad
      May 15, 2015 at 2:36 pm (9 months ago)

      I am also interested in this kind of cross reference to pens. Did you ever find a resource?

      • Seshat
        May 26, 2015 at 7:10 pm (9 months ago)

        No, I didn’t. Would you inform me of any finds you might come across too? Thanks.

  25. ashokdad
    May 15, 2015 at 8:04 am (9 months ago)

    Any suggestions for a larger, nice pen that fits G2 refill? I dig the Schmidt P8126, but the Retro 51 is a little short for my meat-hook hands. And Karaskustoms is out of stock on INK color that I like (blue). Are you aware of anything else larger than Retro 51 that is compatible with the P8126 that has pretty good build quality? I guess my budget is </= $100 (saving my Semolians for my next grail fp…).

    • ashokdad
      May 15, 2015 at 2:34 pm (9 months ago)

      Opting in on email notifications of additional comments.

  26. Glenn Higley
    May 28, 2015 at 2:28 pm (9 months ago)

    My favorite refill hack is Cross Selectip Gel refills in a Mont Blanc 163 “Classique” Rollerball. Just put a few rounds of tape around the end of the refill to fill the gap in the barrel and a “next best thing to a fountain pen” writing experience awaits. The Cross Gel inks are far superior and write much smoother than the MB Rollerball refills, last about 5-20 times as long (no ink dry-out) and are less than half the price online. Sure you can pop the endcap of a MB Rollerball refill with pliers and syringe-fill with fountain pen ink, but why go to the bother when you can get a superior writing experience with less effort?

    I’ve also had luck using UniBall Signo and Jetstream refills, but I like the Cross ink and writing experience much more. If there’s a better refill out there, please let me know.

  27. Donna Hill
    June 22, 2015 at 2:49 pm (8 months ago)

    Coming at it from a different perspective: I love the Jetstream Uniball retractable pens in 0.7 and would love to put this refill in a nicer pen. I’ve got one in an Acme right now and it’s okay, but I’d like to put it in something else, too. Any ideas on what it will fit without any modifications?

    • Ana
      June 23, 2015 at 12:46 pm (8 months ago)

      The Uni Jetstream refills are available on Jet Pens in a D1 size which will fit in a wide variety of pens. I use D1 refills in my Sharbo-X but there’s a list on Jet Pens of 101 compatible products so that’s probably a good start.

      • Donna Hill
        June 23, 2015 at 1:03 pm (8 months ago)

        Ana, you’re awesome! I’ve used Jet Pens many times, but I didn’t know they had this feature. Thanks sooooo much!

  28. Glenn Higley
    June 22, 2015 at 9:10 pm (8 months ago)

    Thanks for guide. No Montblanc listings? I note that you tried many refills from The Pen Place – a shop I love. Are you in KC?

    • Ana
      June 23, 2015 at 12:44 pm (8 months ago)

      I am in KC and the Pen Place is a great resource. Refillfinder lists lots of Mont Blanc refills so check with them if you’re looking for something specifically.

  29. Pepe Gallardo
    July 19, 2015 at 11:29 pm (7 months ago)

    Thanks for the listing you saved us plenty of time searching compatible refills. Couple of questions: 1) Other than the monteverde capless gel refills is there any other gel or hybrid refill or hack to fit into a montblanc ballpoint? 2) Is there a way to get bolder lines and richer colors in D1 refills?

    • Ana
      July 20, 2015 at 3:30 pm (7 months ago)

      I recommend checking with Refill Finder for possible substitutions for the Montblanc ballpoint. I recommend using the refill size guide to find alternatives. As for a good alternative for D1 refills, I love the Zebra gel refills from Jet Pens. They are available in 0.4 and 0.5mm so not super wide but great color options. I hope that helps!

  30. Ken Holsgrove
    July 31, 2015 at 2:13 am (7 months ago)

    If possible, could you include Waterman in your guide?

    Thanks in advance.

    • Ana
      August 4, 2015 at 7:48 am (6 months ago)

      A great resource for Waterman refills is run by the fine folks at Goldspot Pens. Hope that helps you find your perfect refill!

  31. Rick Powell
    August 4, 2015 at 11:21 am (6 months ago)

    Where can I find an extra fine blue refill for my Parker ball pen?

    • Ana
      August 4, 2015 at 12:31 pm (6 months ago)

      I would recommend checking for Parker refills. Refillfinder is a great resource provided by the good folks at Goldspot Pens.

    • Ana
      August 4, 2015 at 12:34 pm (6 months ago)

      Parker ballpoint pens take standard Parker-style refills so you can also purchase from other manufacturers who make Parker-style refills like Monteverde Needle Point Soft Roll.

  32. Burton Urquhart
    August 8, 2015 at 2:21 pm (6 months ago)

    Sheaffer VFM Ballpoint Hack
    When my Blaze Orange VFM ball point arrived, it had a blue refill in it and I prefer a black ink version. I did not wanting to pay a premium for the Sheaffer refill, so I tried a spare Parker style G2 standard refill [Schmdit]. Low and behold it worked, though the refill was slightly more exposed at the tip and thus looked esthetically incorrect. I removed the refill and using a craft knife removed a millimeter or so from the plastic top and it now fits and looks correct. The Parker style is also available from many makers, versions, colours and types of ink and gels.

  33. Cody Hall
    August 19, 2015 at 9:24 am (6 months ago)

    Have you heard anything about a good alternative for a Lamy Safari rollerball refill? I bought my fiancé one for her birthday and she has already burnt through the one that came with it. If she keeps this pace up, it will end up being more expensive than my ink collection (might take a few years), so a cheaper option would be life saving! Great guide by the way!

    • jmreekes
      August 19, 2015 at 12:25 pm (6 months ago)

      I think Monteverde makes a Lamy compatible refill.

      The Lamy refill is supposedly a proprietary refill. However, The refill is the same size & shape as a Pilot G2, except the Lamy is longer. If you cut a small piece of plastic tubing to fill in the backspace, any Pilot G2 refill work. (Any small plastic tubing will work, cut it so the G2-size refill is the same length as the Lamy refill). If she prefers a rollerball refill, I would look at the Monteverde W22. It’s one of the nicest rollerball refills I’ve used. The Signo 207 and Pentel EnerGel will also fit.

      Self-pimping here (again), but I have a blog post about this.

      • Ana
        August 20, 2015 at 10:33 am (6 months ago)

        Thanks so much for jumping in here. I personally haven’t used and of the Lamy refills but I suspected they could take other refills with a little creative hacking.

        • jmreekes
          August 20, 2015 at 3:12 pm (6 months ago)

          You’re welcome. I’ve got an EnerGel .5mm in my Lamy 2000 and it’s awesome.

  34. Tank
    August 23, 2015 at 9:28 pm (6 months ago)

    I don’t see a Uni SXR-80. Is that also a D1 refill?

    • Ana
      August 25, 2015 at 9:54 am (6 months ago)

      There is a Jetstream refill available in a D1 size. Its the Uni SXR-200. JetPens stocks them in .05 and .07mm in blue, black and red.

  35. Ken Holsgrove
    August 25, 2015 at 12:20 pm (6 months ago)

    I’ve got a Sheaffer Levenger Connaisseur Seas rollerball, and have been looking for different refills than the standard Sheaffer, as I don’t think they are as good as other rollerballs I’ve used.

    The Pilot G2 fits, with slight modifications; you have to trim plastic off the section just below the metal tip, and lower where the larger plastic part of the tip holder fits into the main ink barrel.

    Then I came across a very through 2014 article on The Wirecutter that says the best pen of any kind is the uni-ball Jetstream. Most of the rollerball refill reviews I found were years older, not including the latest options. So I picked up a Jetstream RT refill 1.0mm and it fits without any modification. The big thing for me is the writing itself is far better than anything else I’ve ever used. The tip does stick out a little farther than the standard Sheaffer but it’s not a deal breaker for me, by far. This info should apply to all the Connaisseur variations that Sheaffer made from roughly 1986 to 2000.

    As a side note, I learned the Seas Connaisseur can easily be converted to fountain pen use with any of the standard Sheaffer Connaisseur nibs, the original Connaisseur Seas nib, a Sheaffer No Nonsense nib, or Sheaffer Balance II nib. All you have to do is remove the spring at the bottom of the barrel and screw the nib and Sheaffer cartridge or converter in.

  36. Kevin
    August 27, 2015 at 1:50 pm (6 months ago)

    So how do you get the Karas Kustoms retrakts to hold refills like Energel, Jetstream, Signo? Is the best way to plug the end? Or cut and use the spacer?

    • jmreekes
      August 27, 2015 at 10:49 pm (6 months ago)

      The easiest way would probably be to cut the refill and use the spacer. The plug from the end of a Pilot G2 works great to plug the hole but even this method may require some trimming to prevent the tip of the refill from sticking out the front of the barrel

  37. Kenneth Mc
    August 28, 2015 at 7:27 am (6 months ago)

    Nicely put together post – this refill guide is very welcome and most useful. From my experience, some careful browsing is required also. I have a Rotring Rapid Pro ballpoint. I don’t care for the supplied oil-based ballpoint refill and I wanted to try the Schmidt P8126 capless gel refill in it as I reckoned it would be smoother. The length of the ‘standard’ Parker G” refill seems to be consistent at 98mm with a diameter of 5.8 – 6.0 mm. As there is a limited range of refills to be found locally (Galway, Ireland), I have to order replacements via the web. I only discovered after it was delivered that it is too big to actually fit the Rotring – the supplied refill is the standard 5.8 mm. but the Schmidt is 7mm! It appears that the only pen the Schmidt P8126 refill will fit is the retro 51 series.

    • Kirill S
      November 5, 2015 at 5:02 pm (3 months ago)

      Hi Kenneth. The Kaweco Sport rollerball pens also can take the Schmidt P8126 refills.

  38. Keith Weir
    September 7, 2015 at 9:59 am (5 months ago)

    D1 REFILLS for the E
    Skilcraft Aviator B3 as well!!

  39. Alan Mushnick
    September 27, 2015 at 10:34 am (5 months ago)

    Is there a Jetstream RT refill that will fit a Cross pen? Is there any cross roller pen that opens with a click rather than a twist?

    • Ana
      September 28, 2015 at 11:44 am (5 months ago)

      If your pen takes a standard D1 refill, there are Jetstream options available. If your pen takes a standard G2/Euro style rollerball refill then you may be able to get a standard refill to fit. Finally, if your pen takes a Parker-style refill, you may be able to cut down a full-length G2/Euro style refill to fit. Without knowing what specific pen you have, that’s the best I can do. Most of the Jetstream refills on JetPens are under $2 so it might worth taking a chance and seeing if you can figure out how to get one to fit. Good luck and happy pen hacking!

  40. monique
    September 27, 2015 at 1:48 pm (5 months ago)

    awesome post. Im a totally new pen obsessed ”noob”.

    Is it possible for example to put 0.5mm uni jet stream refills in the uni jet stream 0.7mm pen and visa versa? i dislike the jet stream 0.5 mm pen(barrel) colours but love the 0.7 mm Ones! now i already own a 0.5mm pen and i want to be able to exchange the refills

    • Ana
      September 28, 2015 at 11:36 am (5 months ago)

      On JetPens, you can click on “compatible products” under the description tab on the product page and determine which line of refills will fit into your pen. Once determined (multi-pen or regular refill), then the 0.5 and 0.7mm should be interchangeable. Hope that helps!

  41. Michael Dao
    October 10, 2015 at 3:51 pm (4 months ago)

    Sheaffer 300 ballpoint refill
    I recently received this beautiful black lacquer pen as a gift. I love the heft, shape, and the gorgeous looks of it; however, the standard sheaffer refills have a very paltry ink flow, even the broad point. I noted above that someone was able to fit a parker style refill into his Sheaffer ballpoint, but I have tried this and the parker refill simply will not fit inside of the 300, simply due to the more narrow tunnel that won’t accommodate the fat “shoulder” of the parker refill. Which gel refills would fit the Sheaffer 300 ballpoint? Thanks.

    • Ana
      October 10, 2015 at 4:05 pm (4 months ago)

      From the refills that Levenger shows on its site for the 300, it looks like a standard Parker-style refill. If so, I would recommend to Moleskine gel refills or the Monteverde gel refills. Both of these feature a more tapered barrel shape. Best of luck!

  42. gerbss
    November 1, 2015 at 6:26 pm (3 months ago)

    Super comprehensive write-up. I don’t suppose you’ve had any experience trying to find a refill hack for a Graf von Faber Castell Intuition rollerball. It seems this model requires a refill with an unusually long neck. I’m open to adding a spring to the butt of the refill, if that’s what it takes.

    • Ana
      November 2, 2015 at 5:39 pm (3 months ago)

      You might be able to add a bit of tubing or a straw to the end of a refill to fill it out a bit. I might pop over to my local pen shop and see if they have any of those pens or refills in stock so I can take a closer look this week.

      • gerbss
        November 2, 2015 at 7:18 pm (3 months ago)

        Ana, thanks for the feedback. Just to clarify: The issue is not the overall length. I can use a spring to fill some of it. The issue is the length of the neck of the required refill, which seems a bit longer than your average Schmidt, Caran D’ache or Pilot.

  43. Cindy
    November 12, 2015 at 3:39 pm (3 months ago)

    A good refill for Lamy Safari and Al-Star pens is the Jetstream refill. If you can find the capped Jetstream (not the thin stick type one, but the one that looks like a proper capped pen), this refill is best because it has a little plastic extender on top, which you can pull out and stick into the normal clicky Jetsream refills afterwards. This extender is the perfect fit for the Lamy pens mentioned above. If you can’t find this Jetstream, then all you do is take a spring from any ballpoint pen (the wider ones, like the Jetstream springs, are perfect), put it into the Lamy barrel first, and then add the Jetstream refill – the spring takes the place of the extender, and will compress to provide a perfect fit for the pen. By using a spring, you can then put even G-2 refills etc into a Lamy Safari or Al-Star. I’ve been doing this for years with no problems at all.

  44. plastic_avatar
    December 2, 2015 at 10:23 am (2 months ago)

    Fantastic reference! Thank you!

    Anyone have any suggestion for a multi-refill pack that comes close to a Pilot G-2 (or uni ball Signo) in feel?

    I bought a Jetsream multi and the inks are terrible. They don’t flow well, and writing is rough.

    I bought a Zebra multi and its inks are a lot better. No stutters. But not as smooth and great as the Pilot or uni =(

    I just bought another Zebra for the extra inks that come in the package. I’ll jam those in the Jetsream, for now.

    Anyone with a favorite multi/ink combo, or suggestions for refills? I’m all ears =)

  45. Some guy
    December 13, 2015 at 2:20 pm (2 months ago)

    Thanks for this list!

    My favorite hack (and favorite carry pen) is a Zebra f701 with the f402 click assembly mod (replaces the plastic part from the f701 with the all metal of the f402.) Then take out the ballpoint refill it comes with, remove the little “stopper” from the end and stick that into a Zebra g301 gel refill. You also have to remove the rubber thing from inside the tip of the f701 to make the gel refill fit. Then you have a great looking, all metal pen with gel ink, that writes well. My favorite!

  46. Marc
    January 26, 2016 at 3:39 pm (2 weeks ago)

    I am searching for a refill to put in my cross slim gel rolling ball. I received the Darth Vader version for Christmas and would love to put it to use, but I can’t tolerate the 0.7mm crayon sized standard refill. I prefer a 0.5 or 0.38 but have yet to find anything that will fit or that I can modify to fit. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    • Ana
      January 27, 2016 at 7:32 am (2 weeks ago)

      It looks like the Cross Slim Gel takes a 4.375″ (11.11cm) refill that is similar, but not exact, to a G2/Euro Rollerball which is 4.39″ (11.15cm) but has a little bit of a taper towards the tip. There appears to be more plastic on the end of most G2 refills that you might be able to sand down to fit into your Darth Vader pen to get it to fit.

      Also, the Schmidt long 8126 refill is a little shorter at 4.25″ (10.8cm) and you might be able to add the extra length with a little bit of plastic tubing, bit of rubber, or a spring on the end to make up the difference. I referred to Goldspot Pens’ Refill Finder for the refill size guide. Both the Schmidt and the G2/Euro Rollerball sizes will give you a lot more options for finer tips.

      Though finding 0.38mm tips in Euro pen refills can be a bit of a challenge. I often hack refills out of my Pilot Juice, Energel Needletip and other super fine pens and then retro fit them to go into things like Karas Kustoms Render Ks, Retro 51s and Fisher Space Pens for the same reason you’re looking for an alternative refill for the Cross. I cover them with tape, springs and anything else I can find to bulk them up. Sometimes it works, sometimes I make a mess. But its usually an experiment that costs less than $2 so its a gamble I’m usually willing to take.

      • Marc
        January 27, 2016 at 7:51 am (2 weeks ago)

        Thank you so much for your guidance. I am a newbie when it comes to hacking refills. I’ve had success on a couple but haven’t tried many. I will begin my search based on your help and hopefully get something to work.


3Pingbacks & Trackbacks on The Epic Refill Reference Guide: Rollerball, Gel and Ballpoints

  1. […] The Well Appointed Desk Whichever pen is regularly in your hand, you will likely need a refill from those listed here. There is an endless amount of Googling required when searching for refills or at least trying to determine compatibility. This post from Ana at the Desk goes a long way towards solving this problem, and is destined to be a classic: The Epic Pen Refill Guide […]

  2. […] but I think it was in Exotic blanks. But I look for this reference I think that it will be useful The Epic Refill Reference Guide: Rollerball, Gel and Ballpoints | The Well-Appointed Desk also The Standard D1 Size Multi Pen Refill – there are also more links attached to the […]

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