Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pilot Explorers... Found!

Ok, so here's the backstory.  After a night of staying out too late with a group of Russians drinking in Copenhagen. (Did I mention that I was in Copenhagen?) I woke up and stumbled into a coffee shop that was a few blocks from my hotel, it had been my regular spot all week because the espresso was REALLY (Joe and the Juice) good and they were the only place in Copenhagen not playing Adele non-stop (not that there's anything wrong with that.) After hitting my targeted heart rate, I had a few hours to kill so I took a walk.  A little while later I found a stationary store, within 30 seconds I was in there.

In the store...there was one nice fat wall of pens...ok, this could be good. So here's my entire thought process as I go through the display.

Hmmmm...I love pens...
Cool...Pilot G2's...crap only .7's biggie
Fat rollerballs...&
Fat rollerballs...
.005...nice. (review coming soon on this one)
Those Russians made my head hurt...
Fat rollerball...
Ooh, a different label on the Sign pens..
Fat rollerball...
Did I remember to put pants on this morning?
Oh, there are a couple of boxes of Pilot Explorers...
Yawn..fat rollerball...
Blah, blah, (loud screeching noise) Pilot Explorers...WHAT THE BLOODY HELL?

It's true.  No, it wasn't a cigar box full of fountain pens at an auction but it was something I havent seen in a very long time. I looked over my shoulder all nervous-like,  grabbed one and did a few test circles on the scratch paper and without even looking at the price tag (it was in Danish Kroners anyway, like I was going to be able to do any math this morning.) I fillled my sweaty little fists and headed for the checkout.

I tried to ask the owner of the store if they actually still made these and he looked at me like I had a third eye (I actually might have one that morning and if I did, it would have also been very bloodshot.)  That was a bad I asked a better one. 

"Can I call you (fine sir) to order more of these from the U.S.?

His response was "yes, but it vill be very expenshive." (that's my Danish accent)  and I did confirm that he ordered these straight from Pilot and not some guy in a third world country reading my blog that decided to craft these out of old tires and a Bic rollerball In his basement based on my demands (I am so vain.)

But to be sure let's get all scientific and see if these are legit.  (I am not really going to get scientific, those brain cells were left in a tiny glass of some unknown black liquor earlier this week.)  They match up exactly to the older Explorers that I had stashed.
 I am pretty crafty but I have no idea how to open this beast up without breaking it so we cant see the guts. 

So...if these are legit and they are being manufactured. I will be putting in a call to Pilot US this week to see what we can do.  In fact,  I will start now with an open letter to Pilot,

To whom it may concern...

You make these awesome pens...people want them in the US of A.   Fact: As far as I know you don't ship them to the US.  Can we fix that?

Kindest regards, sincerely and nothing but love,


Or... Maybe Brad from the Pen Addict and Jetpens can use his high powered position to see if we can get these back in the US.  (Brad?)

Here's the truth... It's not really for me, its for you.  Back in the day I might have worn these pens out,  but now-honestly..even the EF's write a tad too fat for me.   I will use some of these but not really for my daily arsenal.

So, let's go sign a petition or you can go all radical and feel free to occupy my comment section until this gets resolved or shoot me an email and we can discuss the ones in my hot little hand.

(Tak) Danish for thanks.


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Brad said...

I'm listening, and you know you have an explorer fan in me! Let me see what I can do.

Economy Pens said...

I want one.

Dad To Liberty, Lover of Pens said...

Ok, so I have to admit, even as a pen fanatic, I had no clue what a Pilot Explorer was/is.

And they're not the most attractive pens. If I saw them in a store, I probably wouldn't give them a second glance.

BUT, unless your photography skills are just out of this world, they look like they write impeccably (spelled right?). One of the smoothest writing pens I've ever seen.

That being said, I would love to get one, since you asked if anyone wanted to make some sort of a deal. If it's still possible, you can get to me through my blog, or email me at

I'm off to do some research on the pens now.

Lexie said...

I used to love these pens! My grandmother had a few laying around her house, and I would use them in my journals. This is the pen that I credit for causing my addiction to pens.

Brian said...

Explorers are some of my all-time favorite pens. The all plastic body and blunt angles do well clipped to a shirt collar, with nothing to poke you or react with sweat, and the release mechanism in the clip is completely algebraic. Congrats on your score!

derevaun said...

I discovered an EF Explorer today in the basement of my father-in-law, who is more or less a high-functioning hoarder. Anyway, one doodle on my notepad and I'm a believer.

FWIW, I found that you can disassemble the Explorer by gently widening the slot in the body behind the clip to allow the latter (and the plunger with it) to slide out and release the cartridge.

Anonymous said...

I have been using the Pilot Explorer Extra-Fine Black for over 20 years. Not the same one mind you but just simply can't find a replacement for it that satisfies me. I bought a bunch some years ago and still have a dozen left in reserve. One thing that is really cool about them is that they are really difficult to take apart and for that reason the empty refill can be hollowed out and can be used to store a rolled up bill. Who wants to steal a pen that doesn't work?

Anonymous said...

I have mastered the opening & refilling of my explorers but would love to get some new ones!!!

Only pen I hve used for last 20 years!

Anonymous said...

I've been addicted for years, but had to off the Explorer cold-turkey when I couldn't find them anymore. Where do we sign up for a petition? An insurrection?? Luana

Anonymous said...

I've been MISSING THESE since I left uni and suddenly found them discontinued everywhere!


BTW I'm from Malaysia tho.

Doodler said...

Oh, what I would do to get a few of these.... That sounded awful didn't it? I know it has been months since you found them, but did your connection order any more Explorers?

I will gladly sign a petition or do whatever is needed to get Pilot to wake up! We want our favorite pen back!

Lisa DelCasale said...

I just wrote to Pilot about eight days ago and search regularly for the Explorer online. I'm still willing to sign a petition. I love this pen!

Lisa DelCasale said...

I have tried three separate times at to effectuate an order, got so far as exchanging emails, and then Nothing! Good luck if you try.

A collection and insight into the pens I use and love and a few of the dead ones as they pass their last drops of ink to paper from a pen junky.