By John Dodge
CHICAGO (CBS) — Even in the digital age, a fine writing instrument still makes a statement.
One hassle is having to track down the proper refill, whether you own a Montblanc or Montegrappa.
Chadwick Parker and Joe Huang, of Big Idea Design, aimed to solve that puzzle in 2012 with a Titanium Pen that was compatible with more than 30 roller-ball pen refills.
After getting several requests for a similar pen for ballpoint users, the duo has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund the creation of a slightly modified pen that takes more than 35 ballpoint refills, including the popular Fisher Space Pen.
While Parker says the market may be smaller for ballpoints, the advantage to using them is that they tend to write on a wider variety of surfaces.
“Roller-ball or water-based gel or liquid inks don’t always play well with some surfaces,” Parker said.
Parker and Huang used Kickstarter for the first pen and raised $313,371 and delivered 5047 pens to 58 countries. They offer free shipping worldwide.
The Titanium Pen is available in two colors: raw (silver) and matte black. The pens come with an attachable rubber stylus to use on digital devices, like phones and tablets.
“The idea behind using premium materials to house the refills is to keep it for life and pass it down for generations,” Parker said.
For the current Kickstarter campaign, a $65 contribution gets you a pen, plus one Parker Space Pen refill, along with other accessories. There are additional rewards for higher contributions.
Parker and Huang are big fans of Kickstarter, having used it for a variety of projects since 2011 and have even helped others with their ideas, too.