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Preliminary Design

posted Jan 2, 2014, 1:04 PM by Taylor Peterson   [ updated May 20, 2015, 12:47 PM ]

   Bill of Materials
After looking at existing pens, I came up with a list of major design decisions to be made:
  • Stainless Steel vs. Aluminum
  • Tapered vs. Drafting-style tip (by drafting-style I mean like the Rotring 600 or like these pens)
  • Cylindrical vs. Hexagonal body
  • Single vs. multi-piece body
  • Replaceable vs. sealed end
  • Knurled vs. smooth grip
I currently prefer the first of each set. The reasons for this are as follows:
  • I have a big chunk of stainless which could be heat-treated to gold should we desire. As such, I could do silver or gold whereas with aluminum I could only have silver (realistically, I'm not going to pay for anodizing). Although aluminum would be easier to machine.
  • The drafting-style tip does increase visibility to the page, but I think the tapered tip looks better overall and that visibility shouldn't be an issue.
  • While I do like the hexagonal body of the Rotring pencils, a hexagonal body would require additional machining operations (aka more time) and a change in body geometry between the shaft and grip area (which might not look the best).
  • I initially thought of having the body be a single piece with a slot at the top to allow the bolt to slide out and the cartridge to be replaced. However, I think that that design would allow for the bolt to be lost and would complicate fabrication.
  • Although I don't anticipate needing a stylus nub or anything similar anytime soon, it wouldn't too much more work to give us that option. 
  • While the smooth grip might look sleeker, I think the extra grip of a knurled grip would be appreciated.
In summary, I'm thinking of a pen with the following component breakdown:
  • Bolt and bolt carriage similar to the TiBolt
  • Clip and clip screws similar to any of the above
  • Body similar to the maxmadco, but with knurling on the grip and a replaceable tip like the TiBolt as opposed to unscrewing at the middle.
  • Replaceable end like on the TiBolt but with the bevel like on the maxmadco. 
As I move on to the detailed design stage, these decisions may be changed.