Friday, August 5, 2011

The Pilots Pen

Ever flown in the cockpit of a twin engine Cessna?  It can get a little dark in there at night, even with the provided overhead light.   How about a U H1 Huey Helicopter, doing an air rescue and recovery operation at night?  No, you say.  Trust me, when your trying to write inflight notes, or intel, you want to get it down as precise as possible.  The Pilots Pen allows you to do just that.  It is constructed of a black anodized aluminum barrel, of some quality, with a clear plastic tip area that screws off to reveal an inner mechanism that houses two LED bulbs, rated at 100,000 hours of life, and which sandwiches the pen cartridge in between. 

 The bulbs are powered by a single AAA battery that sits in the upper barrel chamber, and is controlled by an on/off switch on the pen cap. 
When I received the pen in the mail, it came in a white semi-transparent case that contained the pen, two plastic light covers (red and clear), (red for night vision retention).  It also comes with four refill cartridges and a spare AAA battery.

Additionally, it comes with a detailed instruction sheet. 
Being someone who will impulsively awaken at night and write down thoughts and ultimately disturb my wife by turning on my nightstand lamp, this pen was a perfect solution.  The LED lights get extremely bright, and provide you with more than adequate lighting.  The AAA battery will last 20 hours.  So how does it write you ask?  Well the black 0.7mm cartridge was very smooth and the ink dried immediately on paper.  The grip ridges above the tip afforded good finger positioning and holding, as the rest of the barrel is extremely slippery.  It has a very sturdy metal pocket clip if carrying the pen in your shirt pocket.  The one complaint I have is, the off/on switch on the pen cap easily activates the light when the pen is carried in your pants pocket.  The pen cartridge however is activated by twisting the cap.  I think pen and light activation should be reversed.  This would help preserve battery life and eliminate butt switching on.

I find the Pilots Pen an extremely resourceful tool to have in the less-than-adequate lighting situation, as it allows you the ability to complete a writing task without interruption.  And, I find it quite a bargain at $20.00, sold on, as it is well constructed and of quality build.  I highly recommend the Pilots Pen.

1 comment:

  1. i have one and it has been very useful... highly recommend it too.