Pens

These days, more and more pens being designed specifically with EDC in mind. An ideal EDC pen has a small footprint, is built to last, and can easily be carried. Lots of EDC pens allow the cap to fit onto the back of the pen (or “post”) to extend an otherwise short pen into something comfortable to write with. Several designs integrate keychain loops so that you never leave the house without a pen on you.

Tactical pens are seen in plenty of tactical and survivalist EDCs, and for good reason. Extending their usefulness beyond writing, many tactical pens double as glass breakers and self defense tools for emergencies. Design details on tactical pens include aggressively knurled sections and ridges for grip, at least one pointed end, and refills that can write under the harshest conditions.

Not all pens have to be “tactical” to be tough. Several makers improve upon your favorite everyday pen by machining new bodies entirely from metal. These pens have more heft, a premium feel in hand, and increased duratbility that blow disposable plastic pens out of the water. Machined pens can accept tons of different refills, so you can be sure to find something to suit your writing style.

In today’s world of smartphones, note taking apps, and the increasing use of technology in every day life, I strongly believe that there is still a place for analog writing tools. Not everyone carries a pen or pencil and paper, but it can be a valuable addition to your EDC that may have more utility than you had thought. There are plenty of reasons why you should revisit analog.

Have you ever had to borrow a pen? Not unlike the feeling when I first started carrying a knife, you may not know how much you will use one until you start carrying one. Whether it is signing a receipt, jotting down a phone number, or taking notes at work or school, there is no shortage of uses for a pen.


Zerohour Apex Bolt Action Pen

"Zerohour’s Apex Bolt is a titanium ballpoint bolt action pen. It uses Fisher Space pen cartridges, so it can write underwater and upside down. It also has a ceramic tip for breaking glass, and..." (via TheAwesomer)

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Nitecore NTP20 Tactical Pen

When you want to carry a truly tactical pen, it should be one that excels at both writing and self-defense tasks. But too often, what we get focuses on one task over the other. You might find something closer to a kubotan that can sort of scribble something down, or decent jotters that are tactical in aesthetics only. Nitecore's new NTP20 tactical pen aims to strike the perfect balance. Their updated pen design gives you a versatile writing tool that fits your everyday needs while giving you the edge you need to defend yourself or get out of an emergency situation.

As a pen, the NTP20 is quite versatile. It's compatible with eight different ink refills, from Parker to Schneider as well as Apex and Senator cartridges. This gives you a wide range of inks and ink styles to choose from, letting you set up the NTP20 to write the way you want it. The body of the pen is made out of a premium titanium alloy which also helps keep the pen light in hand and in pocket weighing only 1.33 ounces. And at six inches long, it's not too big to carry around.  It even has a streamlined clip at the top to aid in pocket carry, with a ceramic ball underneath that makes for a smooth draw that doesn't catch upon your clothing.

The lightness of the pen makes it easy to write with as well, and the grip areas channeled into the body also help you keep your hands on it. Those same grip surfaces help the NTP20 perform its tactical functions. The shape of the pen and its added length give added leverage during defensive use, while its ultra-hard tungsten tip can break glass in an emergency situation.

The attractive styling of the Nitecore NTP20 draws less attention to its tactical applications when you're writing with it or carrying it, making it easier to EDC as well. Grab one for your loadout at the link below.

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Klarus TP20 Penlight

When you think of a penlight, you probably picture a flashlight that's long and slim like its namesake: the humble pocket pen. The convenient form factor makes it both easy to carry and use for up-close inspection work. With their new TP20, Klarus made the penlight even better by taking the name literally. They've combined a rugged titanium tactical pen with a powerful LED flashlight in a lightweight, streamlined design. Now you can write and light with just a single tool in your EDC.

The Klarus TP20's precision CNC-machined titanium body makes it far more discreet than other tactical pens with sharp edges and aggressive styling. While it may not look the part, it's still a useful tactical pen thanks to the tungsten strike bezel that helps with aggressive poking and prodding. It also pulls escape tool duty, doubling as an emergency glass breaker.

And during normal use, you'll find that the TP20 is worthy on its own as a writing implement. A grip section channeled into the side of the body makes the pen easy to hold when jotting things down. The pen accommodates both Schmidt P950M and Fisher space pen pressurized ink cartridges, so it's ready to write anywhere, anytime as well. At 5.9” long it's not too big for your pockets and only weighs an impressive 1.62 ounces when you consider it comes with a light on the back end.

But it's the built-in penlight that sets the TP20 apart. The top of the pen contains a light module featuring a CREE XP-G3 LED that has a max output of 130 lumens.  It'll throw that light out to about 98 feet, with a runtime of a half hour thanks to its micro-USB rechargeable 10180 battery. A simple twist of the crown of the light lets you switch the light on and off, and choose between high and low modes. That low mode brings the light down to a much more economical 8 lumens, extending its useful life to a full five hours.

The TP20's pen and light combination is already novel, but it's also important to note that you can take them apart as well.  By simply unscrewing the light from the pen assembly, you can use both independently from each other when the situation demands it.

The Klarus TP20 marries everything good about having a penlight and a tactical pen into one convenient and useful package. Free up your pockets, consolidate your carry, and pick one of these up for yourself today at the link below.

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Akinak Titanium Tactical Pen

"We love the grippy texture on the body of WarmKnives‘ handmade writing instrument. This particular pen is made entirely of titanium, which makes it durable and..." (via TheAwesomer)

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Fenix Halberd T5Ti Tactical Pen

They say the pen is mightier than the sword. But all too often with tactical pens, designers take that as a challenge. What you get is less of a writing instrument and more of an intimidation tool that draws way too much unwanted attention. The new Fenix T5Ti Halberd tactical pen is different. It's the perfect choice for someone who wants to carry a tactical pen a bit more discreetly. It features a useful tactical design made of premium materials that also looks as good as it writes.

It all starts with the Fenix Halberd's CNC-finished TC4 titanium alloy body. It has a thoughtful ergonomic shape that sits well in your hand as you write. Unlike most tactical pens, it's not blacked out and covered in wicked sharp edges. To the untrained eye, the Halberd will look like a classy pen in your hand, and that's a good thing. At 5.4 inches long, it's the right size for both writing and tactical use. The titanium construction lets it remain lightweight in your pockets at a mere 1.4 ounces. It's also strong and resistant against the elements, making it a pen that you can take anywhere. And because of its pressurized Schmidt P950M ink cartridge, you can write anywhere with it too.

Plus, the machined grip surfaces on the body give you solid control even when things get wet or slippery. That's important for tactical use, which brings us to the other half of the equation. The solid construction of the pen lets you leverage it as a striking tool. It also features a tungsten strike bezel tip that can help when you need to poke and prod in an aggressive manner. The strong tip also functions as a glass breaker, making the pen useful as a rescue tool in an emergency.

If you're looking for a defensive tactical pen that can look good and write well, the Fenix Halberd is for you. It's available in grey, blue, and purple titanium finishes. You can pick one up bundled with Fenix's legendary bombproof E01 flashlight at the link below.

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Makerset Field Pen Compact

For some essentials, bigger doesn't always mean better. Take it from the team behind Machine Era, who has only improved its durable metal EDC gear by shaving off ounces and inches with every new product. They're continuing the trend under a new name, Makerset, with their smallest pen to date. Don't let its size fool you—the new Field Pen Compact is big on features despite its smaller shape. It manages to fit everything you'd want from an EDC pen like full metal construction, multiple refill compatibility, and a precision click mechanism into a tiny, pocket-friendly design.

True to its name, the Field Pen Compact measures in at just 4.19” long. It's short enough to fit into more places in your carry, but long enough to rest comfortably in the hand. Combined with the natural heft of its brass or stainless steel construction, it strikes a nice balance when writing.

Comfort and balance aren't the only things that factor into a great writing experience: the type of ink refill matters too. The Field Pen Compact accommodates D1 cartridges, including write-anywhere pressurized refills like you'd find in a Fisher Space Pen. You can also swap out refills easily thanks to the Compact's quick change cartridge assembly that's accessible in seconds with a quick twist.

The Field Pen Compact even sports a click mechanism, which is impressive when you consider its size. The metal-on-metal click mechanism also comes with a lifetime warranty in the rare event it breaks from regular use. Rounding out its features is a high-strength aluminum pocket clip for easy pocket carry that doubles as an anti-roll feature.

You can pre-order your own Field Pen Compact in brass, stainless steel, or black DLC at the fully funded Kickstarter before the project ends on Saturday, 12pm PDT at the link below.

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Boker Plus Rocket Pen

As something you can carry with you everywhere, your EDC pen shouldn't draw unwanted attention for its tactical features. Designed by Darriel Caston, the new Boker Plus Rocket Pen is a daily jotter that's just as home in the bug out bag as it is in the boardroom. It pairs sleek, understated styling with a robust bolt action mechanism and a sturdy aluminum build that's tough enough for EDC.

Unlike most traditional tactical pens with prominent points and aggressive knurling all over, the Rocket takes a lower profile approach with its smooth aluminum barrel. To be more accurate, the 5.2” body is actually shaped like an oval. The added width affords a more comfortable and secure grip. But more importantly, it allows for the Rocket's bolt action mechanism to sit completely flush with the body when not deployed. Paired with the body's smooth surface, it makes retrieving the pen from your pocket quick and easy—no more protruding bolt to snag on your pants.

To round out its EDC-worthy feature set, the Rocket accommodates write-anywhere Fisher Space Pen cartridges and similarly sized Parker refills. It also features a deep-carrying pocket clip to make the pen discreet even when you're not using it. For a more incognito bolt action pen, check out the Boker Plus Rocket at the link below.

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Ko-Axis Rail Pen

"TEC Accessories‘ unique writing instrument has a flat shape that’s well-balanced and won’t roll off your desk. Its twin-rail design smoothly retracts its writing tip, and features an..." (via TheAwesomer)

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Reader's Choice: 5 Excellent EDC Pens

Recently our team of writers let you know what EDC pens were on our radar. After asking you what your go-to EDC pens were, we assembled this list of the most recommended picks. This guide outlines the top EDC pens according to you, the community. Read on top learn about the best writing instruments for every day carry.

Staff Picks: 5 EDC Pens We're Using Right Now

Now that we're well into the year, you've probably had enough time with new pickups and additions to your EDC. Since your gear can be so personal, part of the fun is figuring out what's working for you right now and how it might differ from someone else's go-to kit. Today, we're highlighting our favorite pens at the moment, all picked by our staff for several different reasons: pocket friendliness, smooth writing, durability, and more. If you've been on the hunt for a new everyday jotter, be sure to check these out.

The Best CRKT Gear on Sale Right Now

CRKT makes solid everyday carry gear, especially when it comes to unique and innovative designs at affordable price points. And right now, a handful of those designs are on sale at Amazon to get you even more bang for your buck. Whether you're looking for a special last-minute gift for a fellow EDCer or you're looking to treat yourself to another knife for the collection, we've got you covered in this round-up.

BigiDesign Ti Arto EDC Pen

When a new product has “EDC” in the name, we tend to take notice. Especially when it’s from the folks at BigiDesign. They’re known for their streamlined pocket tools, and of course, pens. The Ti Arto EDC is an updated (and improved) version of their Ti Arto pen from last year that accepted over 200 different pen refills. This updated version is lighter weight, easier to use, and adjusts to the length of various refills with a simple twist.

The Ti Arto EDC takes into consideration the feedback that BigiDesign received on their last pen. The result is a simpler yet more functional version that seamlessly adapts to accept over 750 refills (yes, you read that right) without any play in the tip of the pen. The Arto EDC achieves this thanks to the clutch mechanism in the grip, coupled with the screw-to-adjust body that lengthens or shortens depending on how you twist it. When capped, the pen hovers between 4.4” and 5.2”, depending on the refill inside. It’s small enough to easily fit in your pocket and stays in there securely thanks to the deep pocket carry clip.

The pen is crafted from grade 5 titanium alloy and is available in three different finishes. You can pick one up in stonewashed titanium, midnight black, or raw machined titanium. BigiDesign launches their pens through Kickstarter with an excellent project history. The Ti Arto EDC currently has over $120,000 in funding, so back with confidence. No matter what your preferred refill in, the Ti Arto EDC has you covered.

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Tactile Turn Mover and Shaker Pens

Before fidget spinners were a thing, many EDCers would keep their hands occupied with something a bit more practical: a clicky pen. But if you ever carried an average clicky pen, you'd know they're fragile, prone to leaking, and that oh-so-satisfying clicky top is nothing but a nuisance to everyone around you. Tactile Turn's Mover and Shaker pens, on the other hand, are a bit of a revelation. They're precision-machined from durable metals, take all sorts of refills, and feature a custom-made titanium clicky top unlike anything you've clicked before. The first versions were already an EDC favorite, and they've just been revised with a ton of EDC-focused improvements.

Upon first glance, it might look like the Mover and Shaker haven't changed much at all from the original versions. But in this update, the devil's in the details. They still feature that substantial yet minimal silhouette that gives it a good balance, heft in hand, and comfortable grip. The unique micro-ridged grip section now extends along the entire body of the pen for complete control. As a result of all the ridges it's even harder to distinguish where the barrel unscrews to swap out refills, giving the pen its sleek, seamless look.

The biggest and most important change is actually in the click mechanism. These new pens ditch the old brass knock mechanism for a bigger, stronger, and more durable custom titanium design. It not only stands up to repeated clicking and general wear and tear, but it offers more travel when pressing it. It also helps the refill retract further into the body of the pen to better prevent accidental leaks in your pocket. This is a welcome change for those of you especially tough on your pens who prefer the ease of use of a click mechanism instead of dealing with pen caps to lose or slightly more complicated bolt action mechanisms. The new titanium clicky isn't totally silent, though, but it's worth it for the overall enhanced performance.

Of course, the Mover and Shaker come equipped with an EDCer's best friend, a sturdy, stainless steel pocket clip. The pens come in a huge range of EDC-friendly materials, including lightweight and colorful anodized aluminum, hefty polished brass, stainless steel, copper, and polished grade 5 titanium. There's a little under a week left to get in on this fully funded Kickstarter set to deliver in January at the link below.

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Dango P01 Pioneer Bifold Wallet and Pen

Even with the latest and greatest smartphones releasing year after year, so many EDCers still swear by good ol' fashioned pen and paper. They make an unbeatable duo when it comes to fleshing out ideas and keeping tabs on things without having to swipe through app menus and folders. But unlike a smartphone, they're not always the easiest thing to slip into your pockets day in and day out. The team at Dango Products have had success with taking something easy and essential to carry—your wallet—and redesigning it to help you carry more, smarter. Their latest project, the P01 Pioneer Wallet, consolidates your pen and paper in one place, but does it in a more compact wallet-sized form factor rather than your typically bulky journal cover design.

One big reason the P01 Pioneer is able to easily carry everything in such a compact footprint is because Dango designed every component from the ground up to fit together perfectly. They've taken one of the oldest tricks in the EDC playbook of slipping a pen into the spine of your wallet, then upped the execution. The pen was custom designed to slot into the spine of the P01 so it sits flush. To get that perfect fit, it's CNC machined in the USA out of a lightweight, anodized aluminum like you'd expect to see on quality flashlights and other EDC tools. It boasts write-anywhere performance thanks to a pressurized ballpoint ink refill, and it's compatible with the crowd favorite Fisher Space Pen refill as well. The business end of the pen narrows down to a minimalist grip system of 3 silicone o-rings while the back of the pen comes to a 4-way slotted tip for multiple attachment configurations. By now the P01 campaign hit its first stretch goal, so backing the project will get you a free paracord lanyard to easily retrieve the pen.

The other part of the equation is the notebook. It's not the largest notebook you can carry, but it might be one of the most convenient ones. At a modest 24 pages, it's a good balance between portability and thinness without needing replacements too often. Not to mention it's stitched and finished in the USA then protected from excess wear and tear in the P01 wallet itself.

Of course, the P01 is still an EDCer's wallet at its core. It has some of the best elements of all the different kinds of wallets you can carry in one. For starters, it's made in the USA from premium Italian veg-tan leather for that patina after break in and familiar feel in hand. But that's where the similarities with traditional leather wallets end. The leather comes laminated with an RFID-blocking material for your security and geometric patterning give a look and ergonomic feel that lean towards the future. The P01 uses a silicone strap for extra security and versatility like you'd find on more modern minimalist wallets. It's designed to accommodate up to 20 cards as well as Dango's wallet-sized multi-tool from their earlier line of wallets, the MT02. With options for a pen, notebook, multi-tool, and cards, it's got room for a big chunk of your daily kit.

There's just a month left to back the P01 on Kickstarter. It comes in two colorways — a natural tan with silver or a fully blacked out setup, now with a free paracord lanyard as part of the campaign's first unlocked stretch goal. Check it out in more detail at the link below.

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This is a sponsored post presented by Dango Products.

mininch Xcissor Pen

As much as we appreciate a good EDC knife, it's not always necessarily the best tool for the job. And depending on where you live or work, carrying a blade isn't even an option at all. For those quick cutting tasks, a pair of scissors can get 'em done quickly, safely, and precisely. Even then, an EDC-friendly pair of scissors is surprisingly hard to come by: you've got trauma shears, ones built into bladed multi-tools, or dedicated scissors that can be dangerous to toss into a pocket or bag. With successful products like the Toolpen and Wrenchit under their belt, the innovative team at mininch are back to doing what they do best: re-designing essential tools in a pocket-friendly pen form factor. Their latest Xcissor Pen conceals a compact pair of scissors in a robust, machined stainless steel executive pen, making it an excellent office companion.

Where most pens in this class reserve the barrel of the pen for fancy deployment mechanisms or larger refills, the Xcissor opts for multi-functionality with its set of SUS420 stainless steel scissors. They're squared away until you remove the barrel of the pen, disengage the safety lock, and extend the scissors forward. Fully ambidextrous and measuring in at about 1.5” of cutting length, the scissors give you plenty to work with for easy snipping. You can even choose between a nickel plated finish to withstand corrosion, or a blacked out teflon coating for its non-stick properties.

With the scissors hidden, the Xcissor Pen is still a solid EDC jotter in its own right. It features a robust machined stainless steel construction at a modest and balanced 5.5” overall length while weighing only 2.1 oz, scissors and all. Because of the built-in scissors, the pen lacks any click or bolt action deployment. Instead it features a classic screw off cap with an integrated pocket clip. Fortunately the cap actually posts onto the back of the pen when using it so you're less likely to lose it (not to mention the better balance it provides). The pen comes with a Schmidt 635 Mini D1 ballpoint refill and accommodates similarly sized refills.

If you want a capable tool for the office but would rather not carry a knife, mininch's latest creation is shaping up to be a strong option. It's got a discreet and stylish design and two functional features that can benefit any EDC. Check it out and secure one for your EDC in your choice of silver or black color options at the Kickstarter link below.

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Valtcan Tactical Survival Pen

There are plenty of machined pens on the market, as there are tactical pens. To stand out, one needs to bring something new to the table without compromising the usefulness of either use. This is true for EDC especially, since you probably already have a ton of gear vying for valuable pocket space. Valtcan aims to do something different with their tactical survival pen by packing as much utility into a slick machined package, giving you a robust EDC option to cover your bases.

Valtcan's tactical pen comes in polished titanium, giving it that exotic sheen in addition to a nice strength-to-weight ratio. Vents are machined into the pen's body, adding a striking look while giving a better grip, and most importantly, keeping its weight down to just over 2 ounces for ease of carry. The vents also give a glimpse into the pen's internals, where the rest of its tools lie.

Screwed into the the cap lies a whistle for emergencies, while a compact one-piece multi-tool sits in the pen's rear compartment behind its rear tungsten point for glass-breaking emergencies. Unscrewing the main section lets you access the pen, which takes standard 2 3/4” mini refills like the Schmidt 635M or Lamy M21. The pen also comes with a pocket clip for ease of carry to your pocket or pack.

Whether as a pen or multi-tool the Valtcan pen's got some surprising utility under its shell. Pick one up from Amazon at the link below.

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