Here are some of the questions I get the most. If you don't see what's on your mind, please feel free to reach out and contact Dan.
Where can I find information on ordering and shipping, returns, or payment stuff?
You can find this information under the Helpful Stuff tab at top or just click Policies of Parus Pen.
Will I get the pen in the photographs?
You'll always receive the exact item in the photographs. The only pens I have multiples of are six white circuit board pens that have one of two identical circuit board patterns.
Do the pens come with a refill installed?
Your pen will always arrive at your door ready to write with a quality refill. I like Schmidt Technology ballpoint pen and rollerball refills. I load most of my ballpoint pens with the Schmidt P900 and rollerball pens with the Schmidt Safety Ceramic RollingBall SRC 888. I offer most of pens in medium or fine tips with blue or black ink. For more about the stroke size of fine and medium tips please see my blog post What Is the Best Tip Size?
Which refill do I need?
You've finished your tome and need a refill? A Parus Pen ballpoint click pen or ballpoint twist pen requires either a G2 ("Parker-style") or a C1 ("Cross-style") refill. Please see my post Which Ballpoint Pen Refill Do I Need? for more information and to easily match yours to the ballpoint pen refill photographs. Your Parus Pen rollerball pen requires a standard rollerball pen refill sometimes just called euro, European, safety, or international.
Do you make the pens, bottle stoppers, and bottle cap openers yourself?
I'm a sole proprietorship, so I make each item one at a time on my lathe using traditional techniques and tools. I also photograph all the items, maintain the website, and ship the products to you. I do have a crack team of four-legged companions to keep me company though they spend an inordinate amount of time sleeping. See more on the About Parus Pen page under the Helpful Stuff tab at top.
Why buy handmade when mass produced is less expensive?
The decision to purchase handmade comes down to things that are harder to value like an item's uniqueness or meaning to a gift recipient. Handmade items like pens with resin barrels have a one-of-a-kind pattern of swirls and colors never to be exactly repeated. Handmade items like pens with antler barrels tell the outdoors enthusiast gift recipient you've given thought to who they are and what they enjoy. You may not have the time, skill, or equipment necessary to make a loved one a pen of their favorite color, but you cared enough about the gift recipient to search one out.
Where do you get your materials?
The sources of my materials vary.
Antler: I use antlers that I or others find as sheds. I also buy antlers from legally harvested animals. For more about making pens out of antlers please see my post Are Writing Pens Made from Deer Antlers?
Wood: Some domestic species I harvest and cure myself. Other domestics and exotics I purchase from reputable suppliers adhering to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna & Flora (CITES). For more about wood species please see Trappings of a Penmaker.
Colorful Resin: I purchase some resin blanks specifically made for penmakers. However, I prefer to cast my own resin pen blanks. I use a two-part liquid urethane that accepts dyes and other enhancements well. I cast my pen blanks under 60 psi of pressure in a specialized chamber to ensure no bubbles are in my castings.
Hybrid Resin: I make a variety of hybrid pen blanks using natural items I gather (acorn caps, wasp nests, grapevine, burl, etc.) in combination with the two-part urethane resin and process previously described. An additional process called stabilization is usually necessary with the friable natural materials. This involves another specialized resin drawn under vacuum into the material held in a vacuum chamber. The treated material is then heat set to a solid increasing its density. For more about making pens from hybrid resin pen blanks please see my post Hybrid Pen Blanks.
Clear Resin: I cast my own pen blanks of thin items like currency or postage stamps inside of clear resin. I pressure cast these as well to ensure crystal clear viewing of the encapsulated items.
Will my new pen from Parus Pen leak or explode on an airplane?
Although odd things can happen, there shouldn't be a need to worry. I use high quality ballpoint pen and rollerball pen refills from Schmidt Technology of Germany. For a more complete explanation of this topic please see my post Will My Pen Leak or Explode on an Airplane?
What's the difference between the different types of hardware on a pen?
I use pen components plated with a variety of precious and/or noble metals in order to offer a selection of price points. I limit the metal components I use to those I know have "good" to the "best" durability. You will find that the price of a pen generally corresponds with the metal plating used on the hardware. For example, assume two pens require the same amount of time to craft. One is paired with chrome hardware and the second with rhodium hardware. The latter will be priced higher because of its superior durability and luster. For more about pen hardware please see my post Are Precious Metals Used on Writing Pens?