It’s no secret, I’m a fan of Pilot. And pens like the new Pilot E95S show you why. Sure, I’m a retailer of theirs and you should always take what I say about products I sell with that in mind, but I try to be pretty honest and objective despite that. I won’t go saying that the E95S is the best pen ever made, but I will say that it’s a pretty unique pen and one that I was more impressed with once I had it in my hands than I was just looking at pictures.

The E95S is known in Japan as the Elite 95S, which for copyright/trademark purposes had to be named something different in the US. So the “Elite” became “E”. The pen comes in two different color options: black with gold trim and burgundy and gold with gold trim. The black one is pretty straight-laced, but the burgundy/gold is really interesting. That’s actually the color I like more, but it’s a personal preference thing.

Pilot E95s - Overview

It’s a small pen, a really small pen! Only measuring 119mm long (4.7in) closed, it kind of looks like a stick of mascara or lipstick or something! But when you open up and post the pen, it lengthens up quite a bit to 147mm (5.8in), which is about the length of a ‘normal’ pen. This makes it a nice, compact pen. It’ll be a little too short for bigger-handed folks like me unless you post it, but the almost effortless sliding cap actually makes it a pleasure to do so.

The E95S is really light, too, only weighing about as much as a Lamy Safari, even though this pen is made of metal. It’s a cartridge/converter pen that uses the proprietary Pilot/Namiki cartridges and comes with a Pilot Con-20 squeeze converter. It’ll also fit the similar squeeze converter that fits the Parallel and Metropolitan (that’s not available apart from these pens). Here’s the thing though, the Con-50 won’t fit in it, the metal band around the converter is too wide to fit in the pen. And the Con-70 is just way too big, don’t even think about it.

Pilot E95s - Exploded
Pilot E95s comes with the Pilot Con-20 converter and accepts Pilot/Namiki cartridges

Now let’s talk about how it writes. It’s awesome. I really haven’t met a Pilot nib I don’t like at this point, they just really know how to do their nibs (which they make in-house). And this nib is cool, it’s 14k gold and inlaid into the pen body which gives it a really unique and kind of vintage look. It’s also smooth and has a lot of spring to it. Press the nib and you can get some line variation, but I’d go easy on this because it’s not advertised as a soft or flex nib at all. Don’t overdo it. But wow, that EF nib especially is really, really small, and writes with a little bit of tooth which is perfectly alright and expected given how thin a line it draws. The fine and medium nibs are very smooth, and the medium in particular is a nice, wet writer.

Pilot E95s - Inlaid Nib

Here are my personal thoughts on the pen, take it or leave it:
Take it:

  • Very light, portable Incredibly easy (and fun) to cap/uncap 
  • Classy looking, definitely looks the price 
  • Price is great, at $170 list ($136 at GouletPens.com) it’s a very affordable 14k gold nib pen
  • Inlaid EF, F, and M nib is unique, looks cool, and writes really nicely 

Leave it:

  • Con-20 limitation means you’ll never be able to see your ink level 
  • Because the pen is light, I wonder how well it’ll hold up to abuse. Treat it well
  • Short length means it pretty much has to be posted to be usable, by most hands 

The Pilot E95S might not be the easiest name to remember, but one glance at the pen and it’ll definitely stand out to you. If you’re in the market for a Pilot Vanishing Point, Pilot Stargazer, or Pilot Falcon, basically a gold-nib pen that’s really convenient as a pocket pen, I would certainly give this one a look. Pick one up for $136 at GouletPens.com, and if you have any questions be sure to ask in the comments below.

Write On, 
Brian Goulet