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MATINAE PENS – TUL Retractable Gel Pen

I discovered the TUL .7 mm medium point retractable gel pens while looking for TUL Disc Planner refill pages at Office Depot (TUL is an Office Depot brand).  I have purchased several sets of these pens for the ink color assortment and because some of the limited-edition sets are visually lovely.  The question is, do they do their job as writing instruments?

The “basic” color set is all plastic except for the metal pocket clip and the pen tip i.e. the end of the cartridge from which the ink flows.  What keeps the whole cartridge from flying out of the barrel is the nose cone, which for the TUL is plastic as well.

The grip is a perforated rubber (preferred) for no slippage and is of moderate size so there should be little hand fatigue when there is considerable writing to accomplish.

The clicker/thrust mechanism easily depresses and retracts when operated and features a clear flat-topped outer case, revealing the pen/ink color in the assorted color sets.  The special edition black ink sets do not have the clear outer casing likely for aesthetic reasons.

When writing, the ink flow is smooth, and the tip does not skip nor leave ink blobs.  Any skips observed would likely be from having a tad bit too much coffee when writing.  The ink colors are rich especially in the solid barrel limited edition assorted set. 

Though the colors are great and the tip rolls smoothly there are two issues with the TUL, ink longevity and overall construction.  I have pitched at least one full set in the last year because the ink dried out.  Critics may say that the pens are not being used enough and that is a possibility, however, there are sets from other brands that I have had multiple years that did not dry out as quickly as the TUL.  In terms of construction, though the grip is quite suitable, the pen feels and sounds flimsy as one can hear the cartridge rattling around inside the barrel when writing.

The TUL is a basic pen, with great colors, think “great gowns, beautiful gowns”.  If this is a writer’s pen of choice, I recommend keeping plenty on hand because they will run out quickly and if heavy handed, you may break a few. ✍🏾✍🏾.75

Photos: MsThorns

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