Many thanks to Pen Chalet for providing this pen at no cost for review.
I'm no pen expert. That's no secret. But I do love a good rollerball pen and have been using them almost exclusively in my Bullet Journal lately. When Ron from Pen Chalet reached out to me and wanted to provide this pen for me to review, I jumped at the chance.
There's a lot to like about this pen, but first let's get into the particulars. The pen is pretty light, at 0.8oz when posted or when capped, and even lighter when using unposted, which I tend to do. It's about 5.5" long when capped and 5.75" long when posted. Unposted length is 4.75". It's just long enough for my hands and where I hold the pen to use unposted.
This review unit is blue with chrome accents. There's an Aurora logo shaped maker's mark in the finial. The chrome clip is tight but not so tight that it's hard to use. I hate when that happens, so this is clip makes me happy. The band on the bottom of the cap is inscribed with "Aurora" on the clip side and "Italy" on the other side. The only other accent is on the grip section, a little trim ring. It's attached and fits perfectly where the barrel screws on. On cheaper pens, these things tends to be loose and easily lost. Not so here. The body is a resin barrel. It's cigar shaped on the body end, but the cap is somewhat diagonally flattened off instead of rounded.
The cap is friction fit when posted, but when capped there's a fairly satisfying "click" as it goes into place. A rounded raised ring on the grip section fits into a plastic bit inside the cap, which creates the hold and that solid sound. That brings me to my one gripe about the pen: the grip section. That raised ring sits right where I grip the pen. It's on the bottom edge of where I like to grip it, but my fingers do hit it and do sit on it. I guess I could blame my years of pencil use over fountain pens, but I don't think I'm gripping the pen too low. I just think this is bad placement for a ring. I know the purpose if the ring, but something like the Pilot Metropolitan has a similar shape and they place the cap "click" fit closer to the body and away from the grip, and that works out fine. It doesn't cause me to not use the pen or anything, but at times it can be a minor annoyance. Your mileage may vary.
The refill is branded as Aurora, and it's a "universal" rollerball refill, which I'm not sure what that means. I don't know how universal it actually is, but there are some from Monteverde and Schmidt, the usual suspects when it comes to pen refills. I'm wondering if the Aurora branded refill is just a re-branded refill from another company. If I had to guess, I'd say Schmidt, because the ink behaves very similarly to the Schmidt refill in a Retro 51 or Baron Fig Squire.
At a list price of $85, this is a bit pricey for what ultimately comes down to rollerball body...but luckily Pen Chalet has this pen at 50% off right now. That is a pretty sweet deal and brings this pen more in line with what I'd expect to pay, even though this comes from a company as well-regarded as Aurora.
Available from Pen Chalet, $85 list, but right now 50% off ($42.50) while supplies last.