How to Buy Pens on eBay

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How to Buy Pens on eBay

Pens are simple tools used every day around the world. Even in its simplicity, a pen can be considered a minor necessity for every purse, handbag, and briefcase. While the advent of PDAs and other smart phones have minimized the need to constantly write things down, a pen is needed for most day to day transactions.

In the times of yesteryear, quill pens were considered the height of sophistication in regards to calligraphy. Quill pens are pretty much long, sharpened bird feathers that were dipped in ink and used to write. As calligraphy and penmanship evolved, the ever growing industries realized the need for a more practical, effective, and refined approach to writing, so writing tools were improved as technology progressed.

The fountain pen became the rage of the next era, but many alternatives and classifications have been developed since then. Today, buyers can find various types of pens on the market, but they need to decide on their preferred pen type based on the pen tip and purpose the pen may be primarily used for.

Pens Used in the Past

Aside from the infamous quill pens seen in olden movies, there were a few other pen types that were commonly used in the olden days. Some of those pens are still available, but they are not widely used today or stocked in office supply stores.

Quill Pens

As stated before, quill pens were the highlight of writing tools in the early days of writing. Geese and eagle feathers were often used, but while quill pens were popular, they were not the first pen type. Reed pens were in use before quill pens were designed.

Reed Pens

Reed pens are not popular and rarely used on a wide scale. It is said that some remote parts of the world still uses reed pens to develop handwriting skills, but other than that they are almost extinct. Reed pens are made from bamboo material and reed, thus the name. They have a tapered tip with a small opening to allow ink to flow.

Nib Pens

Nib pens are also called dip pens. Constructed with a metal nib, they are similar in operation to a fountain pen. Nib pens generally have a wooden base with a dedicated receptacle. They were not ideal for long bouts of writing text because they required frequent dipping in an ink container to continue writing. Nib pens are still used but mostly within the art world and for certain design techniques, such as calligraphy and comics.

Types of Contemporary Pens and Their General Uses

Pens are now classified by their tip type and sizes. Buyers generally select particular tips and sizes based on the pen's intended use, but some buyers have a preference based on the feel of the pen and the look of the ink on the paper. Some people go as far as to say that certain pens improve their penmanship.

Fountain Pens

Fountain pens are considered top class pens; business executives and the notary public often use them. They are considered distinguished in design and function, but they have their drawbacks. Fountain pens, uses a water-based ink that flows to the nib. The ingenious design that facilitates capillary action and gravity allows the ink to then flow from an inbuilt ink basin.

Contrary to what some users may think, a fountain pen does not comprise any mobile components; the ink is instead delivered through a narrow opening onto the writing surface. There are essentially two types of ink basins for fountain pens, including refillable and disposable options. The disposable option refers to the ink cartridge,, whereas refillable fountain pens contain pistons to allow the nib to draw ink from a container. Some people refill the ink with a dropper.

Best Used

Many people carry a fountain pen to make an executive statement, but aside from improving one's image, a fountain pen is good for times when the writing requires a permanence of ink flowing into a writing surface, when smooth and easy writing is of the most importance with little effort and when a refillable cartridge is preferred, and the need for a fine point tip.

Ballpoint Pen

The ballpoint pen is generally constructed with a steel, brass, or tungsten carbide finish. A minute, hard orb is used to mete out an oil based ink that is often thick. Many people utilize ballpoint pens because the ink dries quickly when meeting paper, but their popularity can probably be more contributed to their low price range and usage longevity. Ballpoint pens are used everywhere and by everyone; students, executives, and office staff alike use them.

Best Used

Ballpoint pens are a favoured option when the pen is used often and in various conditions. They are perfect for use with carbonized documents where a little force is required to generate the carbon copy. Because of their inexpensive price range, buyers can have multiple ink colours easily available when they need to switch often. Additionally, for buyers who work in an office environment that caters to outside customers, ballpoint pens are the best option as customers are often seeking to borrow pens but rarely return them.

Rollerball Pen

A rollerball pen can be considered as a crossbreed between a fountain pen and a ballpoint pen. It was created to combine the features of ballpoint and fountain pens. The ink used in rollerball pens is generally water-based unlike the ballpoint pen, but they share similar ink distribution techniques where the ink is dispersed through a ball tip. This pen types is said to glide more smoothly over a writing surfaces because the ink is not as thick, and it absorbs faster than its ballpoint counterpart.

Best Used

Rollerball pens are best used in instances where an immutable mark is required. The ink soaks into the writing paper, so it leaves a more permanent mark. Rollerball pens provide a smoother writing with little effort, so it can be used in almost all everyday situations. These pen types are also available in a wide range of colours, so they can often be used in forms of art, to highlight various paragraphs and blocks of text, or simply to enhance the appearance of a written piece. Rollerball pens tend to also have finer tips, which may be needed for specific tasks.

Felt-Tip Pen

Many people are not aware that a felt-tip pen is the same thing that the general population refers to as a marker. These pens are not constructed the same way as regular pens; instead, they are made with a rubbery absorptive tip. The tips and pens are found in diverse sizes, which are chosen for different writing purposes from tagging to arts and

Best Used

Small markers are often used for writing on paper and for tagging items. Markers use a lot of ink with bright bold colours, so they are favoured when the writing needs to stand out. Medium sized markers are often used in the arts for drawing and colouring. They are also often used to mark ownership on various items, such as school and office supplies. Larger markers are often used to write on cardboard boxes on other items that require large bold writing. Some special felt-tip pens are made for use in meetings, lectures, and classrooms for the purpose of writing on the board. These are often called whiteboard markers..

How to Buy Pens on eBay

Buying pens on eBay is a pretty easy task. You can simply search for pens from the eBay home page and browse through the large number of listings. You should be able to find many different types of pens in diverse colours, which you can narrow down using the various filters provided. Filter options may include pen type, ink colour, and brand. Selecting specific filters allows you find your desired pen type and ink colour more quickly.

However, you can make the process even quicker by inputting the pen type, brand, and ink colour details in your initial search. In essence, if you prefer to buy a Parker blue ink ballpoint pen,, then you should input those details into the search to filter out all other options from the onset. Once you find the pen or pens that you require, read up on the items, add them to your cart, and checkout.


Buying pens is a simple task, yet it still requires ample consideration because all pens are not created equal. Some pens are more suitable for certain writing purposes than others; thus, the buyer needs to weigh the task and the various pen options before making a purchase.

Before buyers select any particular pen type, they should learn about the various types of pens available and what they are best used for. Some pens utilize water based ink, which is a bit runnier and also more permanent, while others use an oil based ink, which is less runny and good for pressure writing. These factors are but a fraction of the diversity in pen types.

Buyers can also learn about the pen types that were used in previous years; this may become handy if buyers come across vintage pens and would like to keep them as memorabilia. Despite whichever path is chosen, it is always best to purchase from a store that has a wide variety of pen types as well as ink colours. An online store such as eBay fits this bill with its ample collection. Moreover, its search engine and filters makes it easy to locate the pen or pens of choice.

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