I was contacted recently by BN WORKS, a company or brand I was not familiar with who invited me to review a pen they were preparing to launch on Indiegogo soon. Special thanks to them for giving me an early look.
The pen I received is called the BNdot, which is a standard size, retractable ballpoint pen that receives the Parker style refill. Mine came loaded up with the Schmidt EasyFlow 9000 which, if standard with the pen, deserves a nice thumbs up as it is one of the smoothest Parker style refills on the market in my opinion.
The model I received is an all silver, stainless steel barrel with shiny chrome accents on the tail and tip, and the clip of the pen is a matte, slightly textured silver finish as well. Overall the quality and finish of the pen is extremely clean; no nicks, dings, or imperfections in the finish anywhere.
The BNdot is a clean, modest looking pen. Nothing ornate or overly flashy about it, but it comes across as just a nice pen. There is a fine line, it seems, when companies design and produce a pen between not being overly gaudy or too plain. I'd definitely put the BNdot right in between (perhaps a bit swaying towards the plain side), but nothing about it offends, distracts, or really comes across as awkward.
The barrel is a long tube of stainless steel with no taper, and the other hardware pieces appear to be made from brass so it is solidly built. Coming in at just shy of an ounce, the pen is light to carry and write with, but not hefty.
They sent me the all stainless version, but there are also champagne gold and all black versions available.
There is a small step at the tip, but while writing I don't find that my fingers ever rest quite that far down. If you write holding a little further forward, it may be a slight annoyance. The ridge isn't sharp, so wouldn't be uncomfortable in short stints.
To extend the tip, the knock mechanism is built into the clip itself which is pretty clever. I really like this feature as it allowed for a much lower profile on the pocket and is a fun way to fidget with the pen. The "click" is audible and substantial (the way a true "clicky" pen should be), but don't get too carried away in a meeting.
The clip is also spring loaded for easy pocketing and has a little protrusion for ease of extending and retracting the tip. If there is any part of the pen that seems a bit out of place in the design, it would be that little horn sticking out about 1/2 cm from the barrel. I completely understand it's purpose as any shorter would've made the click a bit difficult. Not a huge bother.
Branding on the pen is pretty subtle, being only a small almost ghost etching into the bottom of the clip of the BN WORKS logo. Tastefully done and very minimal.
I enjoy the BNdot pen. Its a classy, simple design that I could see appealing to a broad audience. That being said, does it really stand out in a crowd? Personally, I would have to say it does not. For me personally, a bit more "character" in a pen fits my style, but for others the elegant and clean design (no fuss, but nice) may be just what you're looking for.
Thanks again to BN WORKS for sending me the sample for review! If you're interested in the BNdot, head over to their Indiegogo page to check out the project.