I recently discovered that of all the pen reviews I’ve written over the years, I never actually used or reviewed the office supply closet staple, the Pilot G-2 gel pen. Partly I think it was because I had never found one in an office supply shop that was narrower than the 0.7mm width. I just prefer a finer line from a gel or rollerball. So, on my last trip into Office Depot, I crawled around on the bottom shelf until I found a 4-pack of 0.5mm Pilot G-2s. For the record, the finer points are kept on the bottom shelf at Office Depot. Why? I have no idea.
The G-2 has a rubber grip area and is a retractable pen. I didn’t find the grip to be as comfortable as the more silicone-based grips found on pens made for the Japanese market like the Uni-Ball Signo DX and the Zebra Sarasa. I don’t have a preference for retractables though I can see the appeal. In the case of the G-2s, I used two out of the pack and one had noticeable vibration in the spring causing some feedback in the tip when I wrote that I did not like. For a budget pen though, I suppose most people wouldn’t notice or care. I just don’t like the tip to wiggle or give when writing so it bothered me. The second G-2 I pulled from the pack had less of this give so it seems to be a quality control issue.
The ink writes smoothly and dries before I can smear it which is a big plus for a left-hander.
When compared with the one retractable pen I reach for again and again — the Zebra Sarasa — I find the G-2 to be lacking. The spring-loaded clip on the Sarasas are far more functional though no more aesthetically lacking than the G-2 clip. I have never noticed any give in the points on the Sarasa as a result of the retractable spring. And finally, the Sarasas are available in a far wider range of point sizes and colors.
That said, if you can convince your office manager to order Pilot G-2s instead of Bic Stics, you’ll probably have a better day at work but you are all good pen junkies and bring your own pens to work already, don’t you?
Its only sold in black, blue and red in the US and as mentioned before can be purchased in the larger 0.7mm and 1.0mm sizes. (4-pack sells for about $4.79)