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

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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.

Before we begin, we want to know…

What EDC pen is on your wishlist?

Leave a comment below with your go-to pen or even a pen you've been wanting, and we'll feature your picks in a follow-up article! To get the ideas rolling, we'll start things off:


Machine Era Field Pen

Bernard Capulong: I hadn't put much thought into a pocket-friendly pen recently since most of my writing sessions tend to be on the longer side and take place at a desk, where a full-sized pen makes the most sense. But ever since getting my hands on Machine Era's latest Field Pen, I'm starting to come around. The Field Pen has practically everything I'd look for in a pocketable EDC pen: a shorter body, durable materials like solid brass or stainless steel, a robust pocket clip, and a retractable design that's much less likely to leak in my pocket. With the Field Pen, I also get to see what all the fuss is about when it comes to bolt action. It's so satisfying to deploy and definitely inspires confidence in the construction of the pen overall. Last but not least, it takes the trusty Fisher Space Pen cartridge (since the last thing you want is an EDC pen that won't write). The slight heft of the stainless steel body (1.3 oz) and ribbed mid section help make for quick, balanced, and comfortable writing too.

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Pentel EnerGel Alloy

Mikey Bautista: Being a lefty I find it hard to find pens that balance comfort, ink, smoothness of writing, and aesthetics; usually it's pick 3 and call it a day. I discovered the EnerGel line on a list of fast-drying gel pens--the type I'm most comfortable with--and found the Alloy as the standout of the set. It comes in lightweight but strong aluminum alloy in a variety of barrel colors, a subtle wave-shaped grip, and its refill even comes in my preferred tip size of 0.7mm. I also like retractable, clipped pens the most, making the Alloy the only pen I've come across that covers every single one of my needs. I'm looking forward to amassing a small pile of these.

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Tactile Turn Slider Bolt Action Pen

Ed Jelley: This pen by Tactile Turn was released a few years ago, but it still remains my most-carried pen. The short size of the Slider model (compared to the longer Glider) fits and feels great in my pocket. The pen operates with a bolt-action extension mechanism. Not only does this keep the refill fully retracted in the pen, but it’s also fun to play with as well. The clip is positioned very close to the top of the pen, allowing it to ride deep in your pocket too. The entire pen is machined with a grooved pattern for improved grip and a unique appearance that makes an otherwise simple silhouette a bit more interesting. The size, extension mechanism, and grip result in an excellent pen that’ll compliment your EDC nicely.

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Pentel Tradio Pulaman

Jonathan Tayag: I bought the Pentel Tradio Pulaman during a trip to Japan last year, and it's been in my pocket ever since. It's an inexpensive fountain pen that has a unique and smooth, almost felt tip feel. But unlike a felt-tip, it can resolve to a fine point for detail writing work. The Tradio Pulaman is a joy to write with, and it's replaced even some dedicated EDC pens I have on hand. And because it's a disposable pen, I won't be too miffed when I end up losing it. I'll pick another up and continue on where I left off.

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Tanner Goods Memori Pen

Adam Molina: One pen that I loved using was the original Machine Era Brass pen, but it slipped out of my pocket at the movie theaters never to be seen again. From then on I promised myself I’d only use pens with a pocket clip to keep them from falling out again, but the Memori Pen from Tanner Goods has me wanting to go back on that promise to myself. Sure, it doesn’t have a pocket clip, but in a way it looks like a slightly larger and more ergonomic version of that pen I lost all those months ago. It has that same brass construction that I loved and over time I’m sure it will patina just as nicely, plus the knurled section towards the tip is sure to make gripping the pen that much easier during longer writing sessions. It also accepts G2 sized ink cartridges (just like the Machine Era pen) and to top it all off the pen is made in the city I recently moved to: Portland, Oregon. How can I not support the artists behind the Memori?

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What EDC pen are you enjoying right now? Leave a comment below and we may feature your pick in the next Reader's Choice round-up!

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Discussion (49 total)

The one, the only. Fisher Space Pen. Multiple ones, for work , truck and home. Many reasons why it is so popular. Let's just go with made in the good ole USA and it just performs. When you need it, it's gonna work.
Where's the Fisher Space Pen? Best one of all!
The Zebra 701 with the Fisher Space. Pen Cartridge. The best of both worlds: sturdy dependable pen with a bullet proof smooth writing cartridge. And affordable! No financial trauma if it gets lost, just the angst of losing a good companion.
That's what I've been using for years!
The Zebra 701 or the Parker Jotter. These two have become my go to pens. I've got a lot of tactical stuff. But now that everybody and there mother knows what a tactical pen looks like. The best tactical has become, less tactical.
Lamy 2000. It is not pocketable but great writing every time.
Once I discovered fountain pens, I don't carry anything else (except a brass Fisher) now.
Using a vintage stainless steel USA made parker pen from the 1960's. Still my favorite.
I was carrying Fisher Bullet Space Pen for about a year and loved it very much. But I was interested in a fountain pen and thinking about getting one.
So I got Pilot Metropolitan few days ago. High quality with inexpensive price.I really like it.
But it's little big to put in my pocket so Space Pen still lives in my pant pocket(Metropolitan is in my bag or shirt pocket).
Work pen is a big desk pen. Pocket is space pen. Bag carries TWSBI diamond fountain pens in blue and black. And I'm content!
What no space pen? Outa your gourds.
I currently carry a Maxpedition Acantha pen for my daily use. I like the more production level stuff for those cases where I lost the pen and don't have to wait a long period for a custom pen to arrive. I am looking at the Fisher Space Pen Trekker though for just dropping in my pocket and not having to deal with the over extended clip on the Acantha, that sometimes digs into the chair I'm sitting on (my college probably hates me for scratching the plastic desk chairs by now).
Everyman Grafton with G2 0.5 refills. Love it!
maxmadco titanium. best daily use pen of all time.
I'm thinking about getting a 'Hardcore Hardware Australia TWI02'. =)
Currently carrying two Zebra 701 pens, blue and black ink and the pencil.
You have made the right choice! Zebras and Pilot G-2 0.38 are my favorites!
I use the Pilot G-2 0.38 all the time for work, it’s a great pen for jotting notes in the margins when in meetings. When I’m away from work and get to do some long form writing my go to pen is a Parker Special Editon fountain pen in Stealth Black. It’s a hefty pen that helps me make the switch from the fast pace of work to a more relaxed writing style.
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