Big Idea Design Ti Arto pen review

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The look and feel of your favorite writing instrument is important, but even more important is the ink refill. You can have the coolest looking pen on the planet, but if it doesn’t write well, it will never become your favorite pen. When you find a refill that writes well, but won’t fit in the body of your favorite pen, it’s a real bummer. Enter the Big Idea Design Ti Arto pen. It can accept over 200 different types, styles and brands of refills. Chances are your favorite is one of them. Let’s check it out.

What is the Ti Arto Pen?

The Big Idea Design Ti Arto Pen is a machined pen that is made of Grade 5 Titanium and has been designed to accept over 200 different in cartridge refill types/styles.

What’s in the box?

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Ti Arto pen
Uniball Signo 207 0.5mm black gel ink refill installed
Pen cap tool and keyring
Protective microfiber black felt sleeve
2 O-rings

Design and features

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The Ti Arto is 5.19 x .43 x .43 in and weighs in at 1.29 oz. The body grip, mechanism, and cap are made of Grade 5 Titanium. The pocket clip is made of Grade 4 Titanium, and internal cap nut is made of 6061 Aluminum.

The Ti Arto is only available in the color you see above. It’s a lighter colored Titanium that almost looks silver. I like it.

I also like the finish on the pen. It’s smooth and sleek without being slippery.

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When the cap is unscrewed, it reveals a grooved grip that has a comfortable feel.

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The cap posts to the back of the pen so there’s no worry of misplacing it. The threads on both sides of the pen are very smooth and best of all, the pen does not rattle regardless of the position: capped or posted.

Even with the cap posted on the back, the Ti Arto is a nice length and has a good balance in your hand.

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Speaking of the pen cap, a special tool is included with the pen that is used to tighten the interior nut for the top cap which holds the pocket clip.

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The look and feel of the Big Idea Design Ti Arto pen is great. But that’s only the start. What really sets this pen apart from all the other pens I’ve reviewed is the unique mechanism that holds the refills in place.

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The mechanism reminds me of a drill chuck that holds drill bits in place or those large pencil lead holders.

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The Ti Arto that was sent to me shipped with a Uniball Signo refill, but this pen can accept almost any refill you can throw at it.

To change refills, you just unscrew the grip and remove the mechanism.

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The mechanism is the holder that fits into the grip. It has a smaller diameter than the grip and as the grip is tightened, the mechanism compresses to grip the tip of the refill in such a way that you can customize how much of the tip you want extending from the end of the pen. It’s a genius design and I can’t believe we haven’t seen pens use this idea until now. At least I haven’t seen others that have a similar design.

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I tried quite a few refills in the Ti Arto including a Pilot G2, Jetstream SXR-7, Kaweco G2, Fisher Space Pen and a few others. They all worked perfectly. To see if your favorite refill will work with this pen, check out the list on Big Idea Design’s Ti Arto info page.

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Depending on the refill used, there’s a small gap between the grip and the body of the pen that can be left as is, or you can use one of the included O-rings to fill it.

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It might be fun to get different colored O-rings to customize the look of the pen.

I am wondering how long the O-rings will last since the cap does rub against them when posting and unposting. Time will tell.

Final thoughts

I really really REALLY like the Big Idea Design Ti Arto pen. I can easily say that it’s currently my favorite pen. This pen is extremely well made, looks great, feels great and writes great because it works with my favorite refills. It’s not overly expensive and it will definitely outlast me. It’s a keeper.

Update 06/04/17

It’s been about 5 months since I posted this review and this pen is still my favorite. I use it every day. The only thing that would make it better would be if it was a clicky style pen that didn’t have a screw on cap. But even without those two differences, I love this pen. I have a feeling that my next favorite pen will be from Big Idea Designs too. They just make great pens.

Source: The sample for this review was provided by Big Idea Design. Please visit their site for more info.


Product Information

Manufacturer:Big Idea Design
  • Can accept over 200 refill types
  • Easy to remove/install refills
  • Nice balance
  • None

15 thoughts on “Big Idea Design Ti Arto pen review”

  1. Gadgeteer Comment Policy - Please read before commenting
  2. I’m afraid that I also have a thing for pens. Every time you say that you REALLY like a pen, I wind up buying one. I now have one of these on order. I look for one that feels good in my hand (which is usually thin) and can take different inks.

      1. I have had the pen now for about a week. It feels good in my hand, looks good, and takes all my refills. It is my main pen now because of those qualities. But. It does not operate with one hand which is another thing I like in my pens. If you move around a lot and have to keep uncaping and recaping the pen using both hands that could be inconvenient.

        1. I agree about the lack of one-handedness. I usually just need to uncap it when I get to work and recap to go home. But I can see how it could be annoying to have to screw-on, screw-off multiple times a day 😉

          1. It’s still a great pen and the only one I am using. When I first opened the box the spare o-rings fell into my carpet, never to be seen again. I sent a note to the company and they immediately sent me three spares.

  3. a collet…who’d of thunk it
    that’s really clever

    I suppose this is a rhetorical question…how many pens does one person need?

  4. Just took delivery of one from the international store. Very nice. For some reason it shipped Hong Kong – Germany – Australia. But as shipping was free I can’t complain 🙂

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