Phenolic Render K Prototype by Karas Kustoms

This is a fun one that I've had on the list to review for awhile.  The Karas Kustoms Render K, it seems, has become one of the staple pens in the community for some time and is still one of my all time favorites.  It is a pen thats design I never grow tired of and still find myself admiring while using it.  A timeless piece for sure, and kudos to Dan Bishop for creating such a neat product for us to enjoy.

This particular Render K is extremely unique and was a gift from Dan and Bill that they gave me several months ago, maybe even closer to a year.  The Delrin Render K that received some attention awhile back is rare as the amount they produced was pretty small in number, but this smooth capped, phenolic version was literally done in only a handful.  In talking to Dan, they actually only made six of these and mine was hand finished by Dan himself.  Needless to say, this one is probably the jewel of my Karas "Kollection".  Thanks dudes.

Recent Instagram Post

You may recognize the material in another pen on the market, the TWSBI Micarta.  For a little Wikipedia education on Phenolic... 

The overall dimensions of the pen are very similar to the Render K that many of us know and love, but does not have a taper in the barrel towards the end of the pen.  It is similar to the raw bar-stock version that the guys did as well, so the end is more squared off and flat.

The tip is aluminum as I'm sure machining one from phenolic would have been a chore and probably prone to breaking/cracking.  The cap is aluminum also, but is smooth (no knurling) which gives the pen an overall vintage look.  Dan and I were discussing that copper accents might be really awesome to coordinate with the phenolic... 

I'm not entirely sure of how durable phenolic is as it feels like a fiberglass/plastic/resin type material that could be prone to breaking.  This is a pen I keep at home mostly that doesn't travel too often as I don't want to lose or damage it, or test out the stresses it can take.  I have my aluminum or brass (or copper) versions to use and abuse as they can take the beating.

I review this pen not so much to discuss it's features, feel, or writing experience, but to showcase how cool the design process is with making products.  It would be easy to simply stick with making the same version of a product we've found to be successful, but its awesome when people are willing to branch out and try new things just "because".  There is also something to be said about creating a physical version of a product during testing as having it to handle and use is a different experience than seeing a drawing or rendering; it connects you with the product a bit more if that makes sense.

This was a quick review/tribute, but I thought it'd be fun to share some shots of this rare version of one of our favorites.

Now, I'd imagine if demand was high enough for something like this the guys might even consider doing a batch of them.  No promises of course, but if we created enough of a stir we might get our way.  Should we start a petition?...

Again, thanks to Dan and Bill for this little beauty.