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Unique pens, that combine modern 3D printing technologies with precision machined Titanium & Aluminium.
Unique pens, that combine modern 3D printing technologies with precision machined Titanium & Aluminium.
97 backers pledged £4,071 to help bring this project to life.

About

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£4,071

97

NEW STRETCH GOAL - £5,500 - All Delux backers will have the option to upgrade their refill choice to the Pilot Hi-Tech-C mini refill! All other backers will be able to upgrade from a Zebra refill to a Rotring or MonteVerde refill (See update 4 for details)!

Hi, thank you for taking the time to view my campaign!

My name's Mike, I'm a product designer, and inventor of the DNA pen - A high quality, British made, writing instrument. Combining 3D printing and precision machining to create one of a kind pens. When designing the pen I had five key phrases in mind: Quality, Uniqueness, Reliability, Durability & Affordability.

Quality - A grip machined from a solid billet of either Aluminium or Titanium. A textured body sintered from nylon, and a lot of ergonomic design make this pen high quality and a joy to use.

Unique - One of a kind 3d printed body on every pen. Each pen also has it's own serial number to reflect this.

Reliable - Designed to work with industry standard mini refills made by almost every major brand, make this pen is as reliable as any.

Durable - With a grip machined from a solid metal billet and a body made from incredably strong sintered nylon, this pen is designed to last.

Affordable - With prices starting from just £32 for a ready to go DNA pen this is similarly priced to a number of standard high street pens, while offering uniqueness, materials and British manufacture that they do not.


So why Kickstarter?...

I've launched this campaign here on kickstarter to raise enough funding to manufacture the first batch of DNA pens. The funding is needed as the pens need to be manufactured in quantities large enough to keep cost of components down. This first batch will contain just 200 unique pens: 100 in aluminium and 100 in titanium.

...Introducing the DNA pen.
...Introducing the DNA pen.
Unique: an example of a unique structural pattern. Created one by one and 3d printed using SLS technology.
Unique: an example of a unique structural pattern. Created one by one and 3d printed using SLS technology.
Serial Number: Every pen has a serial number to ensure its design is never repeated.
Serial Number: Every pen has a serial number to ensure its design is never repeated.
Gift Box: Each pen has its own presentaion presentation box, making it a perfect gift.
Gift Box: Each pen has its own presentaion presentation box, making it a perfect gift.
Titanium or Aluminium: the grip of the pen is machined in the UK from your choice of titanium or Aluminium.
Titanium or Aluminium: the grip of the pen is machined in the UK from your choice of titanium or Aluminium.

Technical Specification...

Pen Length: 139mm

Pen Diameter: 10.5mm

Aluminium Pen Weight: 18g (including refill) - In comparison a regular disposable biro usually weighs between 5g and 8g.

Titanium Pen Weight: 20g (including refill).

compatible refills: All standard mini refills.

Mechanism: twist mechanism to extend and retract the refill. Please be aware this is also the only part of the pen that is not British made. I have used this mechanism extensively and have found it to be very reliable and quality. A new mechanism designed solely for this pen would have significantly increased production costs (and Price!), without adding much value to the final product. This is why I have chosen to buy in the mechanism. With very little choice in the way of British manufactured pen mechanisms I decided to import this component.

Please feel free to ask If you have any other questions regarding the technical aspects of the pen. 

Ergonomic: the weight and dimesions of the pen make it a pleasure to use.
Ergonomic: the weight and dimesions of the pen make it a pleasure to use.

Using the DNA pen... 

Refills: I decided to make the DNA pen compatible with the easily available mini refill. This is a standard size refill meaning almost all major brands manufacture a refill in this size.

  • Rotring
  • Zebra
  • OHTO
  • Cross
  • Schmidt
  • Monteverde
  • Lamy

These are just a few examples of the brands that manufacture refills in this standard size.

Mini refill: Plenty of choice and easily available... not to mention easy to change!
Mini refill: Plenty of choice and easily available... not to mention easy to change!

The refills are also available in all number of styles allowing you to easily find a refill that suits your writing and lifestyle. Some of the available options include...

  • Ballpoints (available as broad, medium, & fine. In a range of colours).
  • Pressurised Ballpoints
  • Ultra fine tip technical style
  • Highlighters
  • PDA styluses (please not as these are not capacitive and will therefor not work on your IPad, Iphone, or similar device).

All DNA pens come equipped with a free zebra refill. However, by upgrading to a premium aluminium or titanium pen you can choose between a range of other refills! Including these...

here are some of the refills
here are some of the refills
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The DNA pen is also designed for day to day life. With tough materials and a size that makes it convenient to carry. Thanks to the silky smooth twist mechanism, there's no cap to loose either!

Handy size: at less than 140mm in length the DNA pen is designed to be pocketable.
Handy size: at less than 140mm in length the DNA pen is designed to be pocketable.

Creating the DNA Pen...

The DNA pen was born from a simple concept, but as lot of work has gone into into making it a reality. From research, Initial concepts, Development, prototyping, and testing. However, there's still more work to be done to take the design from a working prototype to a production model. That's why I'm here on Kickstarter for your support. Here's a little bit of what I've done so far...

Development Design: Numerous notebooks were filled looking at everything from form and function through to cost and suitability to manufacture.
Development Design: Numerous notebooks were filled looking at everything from form and function through to cost and suitability to manufacture.
Prototyping: A huge number of prototypes were created to to test everything from ergonomics, clarity of patterining, suitability of mechanism, materials and even how best to overcome issues of parts not manufactured using the same processes.
Prototyping: A huge number of prototypes were created to to test everything from ergonomics, clarity of patterining, suitability of mechanism, materials and even how best to overcome issues of parts not manufactured using the same processes.
Development: the final components allowed for a reletively simple, yet efficient design. With ergonomic feel, comfortable sizing and materials that have a steady weight, and compatability with good refills. The pen was nearly ready to go.
Development: the final components allowed for a reletively simple, yet efficient design. With ergonomic feel, comfortable sizing and materials that have a steady weight, and compatability with good refills. The pen was nearly ready to go.
CAD modeling: A suitable method of using CAD to create new structural patterns in an effective way was developed. This reduced labour time and so minimised unit cost - crucial in making this product affordable.
CAD modeling: A suitable method of using CAD to create new structural patterns in an effective way was developed. This reduced labour time and so minimised unit cost - crucial in making this product affordable.
Manufacture: Precision machining was selected for unparalleled dimensional accuracy which was crucial in creating a quality product. Careful checklist of quality control were also created to ensure consistent quality in production batches.
Manufacture: Precision machining was selected for unparalleled dimensional accuracy which was crucial in creating a quality product. Careful checklist of quality control were also created to ensure consistent quality in production batches.

Production Plan...

I have created a production plan to help ensure the delivery of the rewards on time. A contingency period has also been included in case of any delays. But hopefully there won't be any and then you'll get your rewards early! A basic overview of this plan can be seen below...


Rewards...

To thank you for your support in this campaign there are a number of reward options available to suit any budget. From Classic Aluminium Edition pens through to full bespoke options. These options are outlined below...

 Thanks for taking the time to view my campaign!

Risks and challenges

Delays in the production plan - Any project, no matter how well organised, has the potential to be hit by unforseen delays. To prepare I have included contingency time within each production phase, and an additional two week contingency phase at the end. This means that if any delays occur they are unlikely to push back the expected delivery date. As such, if there are no unforseen delays in production, you'll get your reward early!

Creating enough unique designs - With each product being designed one by one, there is the risk that large order numbers could cause delays. This is why the pens will be released in batches. With an understanding of how long it takes to produce each unit I am able to calculate how long it is likely to take to maknufacture a batch of a given size. Hence, a limited number of products (100 Aluminium pens, 100 titanium pens and 5 bespoke pens).

Repetition of unique patterns - To ensure no pattern variation is ever repeated each is constructed from scratch on a CAD model, making it very unlikely that another would follow the exact same pattern. However, to further ensure each is unique, the pen will be checked against a database of previous designs based on it's pattern style and signed off as one of a kind. This will take place as part of a rigorous quality check.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About $1.67

    Thanks for your support! As a reminder of your support I'll be making a DNA pen where the structural pattern will be created from the initials of all the backers at this level. You'll get an image of this pen to remind you of the experience as well!

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £32 or more About $54

    Aluminium Edition: A uniquely patterned DNA pen with a machined aluminium grip. + Gift box + Zebra ball pen refill (Black, Blue or Red) + Unique serial number card (with a serial number ranging from 26 - 100).*** Free UK shipping******Add £4 to upgrade to Delux edition***

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  3. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £36 or more About $60

    Delux Aluminium Edition: A uniquely patterned DNA pen with a machined aluminium grip. + Gift box + choice of upgraded refill (OHTO, Rotring, Lamy, etc) + Unique serial number card (with a serial number from 1 - 25) + your own personal initials on the pen! ***Free UK Shipping***

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    Reward no longer available 25 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £39 or more About $65

    Titanium Edition: A uniquely patterned DNA pen with a machined Titanium grip. + Gift box + zebra ball pen refill (Black, Blue or Red) + Unique serial number card (with a serial number ranging from 26 - 100).***Free UK Shipping******Add £4 to upgrade to Delux edition***

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  5. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £43 or more About $72

    Delux Titanium Edition: A uniquely patterned DNA pen with a machined Titanium grip. + Gift box + choice of upgraded refill (OHTO, Rotring, Lamy, etc.) + Unique serial number card (early serial numbers 1 - 25) + your own personal initials on the pen! ***Free UK Shipping***

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    Reward no longer available 25 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £89 or more About $149

    Bespoke Edition. I'll work with you to create a pen with a pattern designed to your own personal specification!
    ***Free worldwide shipping***

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Funding period

- (35 days)