Friday, March 27, 2009

Review: Bic ReAction Gel Pen

Bic pens - they bring back memories of the ubiquitous Bic Stic and the Bic Click - cheap ballpoints sold by the millions as far back as I can remember. I used Bic Stic pens in high school, with their thick, gloppy ink, scratchy point and the ill-fitting caps (which I tended to lose). They got the job done without syle or fan-fare. I do have a soft-spot for Bics, particularly the Bic Click, but I wouldn't list them as go-to writing instruments.

I was looking at pens at Target, when a pack of Bic gel pens caught my eye. A four-pack for $5. "Why not?" I thought, and bought a pack to test. I have to admit, I was intrigued by the claim on the packaging: "Shock absorbing spring system" for smoother writing. Shock absorbers? I wasn't planning on taking the pen off-road, but if it made the pen write smoother, sure!

The pen has a nice feel, tapering to a wider diameter at the grip. It felt firm and secure in my hand, but the barrel lacks any sort of padding. That wasn't an issue for me, but for anyone who suffers from writer's fatigue or arthritis, this pen might not be a good choice. Quality wise - it was okay, but not on the same level as a Uni-Ball or Pilot.

The pen is a retractable, which is the type of pen I prefer. I noticed that when I started writing, there was a definite rattle in the body of the pen. When I retracted the point, the rattle disappeared, even when I shook the pen. I tried another pen from the same pack and again experienced the rattle. Apparently the shock absorber spring is loosened when the point is extended.

As to the writing experience, I was well-pleased. The pen wrote in a fairly smooth manner, laying down a nice, dark line of black ink without skipping or scratching. I say fairly smooth, because there was a moment's hesitation with the pen when I first began, but this disappeared instantly and did not recur. Still, compared to Uni-Balls and Pilots, the Bic is just a step behind.

Overall, I can recommend the Bic ReAction Gel Pen as an economical choice for a work-a-day pen. It's a good value for a buck twenty-five per pen. The gel ink appears to be of good quality and the pen has a nice feel.

Now if Bic could only fix the rattle in the suspension.


  1. These look interesting. Great job as usual. Nr

  2. I have a thing for Pilot pens. They're just niiiice and smoooooth.

    That and gel pens in a gazillion colors. I used to have the black paper and everything. I love love love colored ink. Haha.