The original Movers and Shakers were great and incredibly popular, but after making a lot of them I got a lot of feedback from owners that the mechanisms would wear out. People also had feedback that the grip area needed to be longer as well as a few other little items. I started designing a new mechanism a couple years ago, but was just able to buy the machine that could make these new parts earlier this year. As most of you know, I try to make as much in my shop as possible to be able to produce the best product I can. The old click mechanisms worked well, but because they are made from brass, they didn't withstand much abuse long term. The internal parts got dented and eventually would not work. They also had a short stroke distance from advanced to retracted which led to damaged refills and ink on clothes. So what was the solution? Make my own. Stronger materials and more travel would make the ultimate click mechanism.
Now they are made from titanium and all of the parts have been enlarged to better withstand abuse, as well as give the mechanism more travel distance so the refills retract significantly far into the pen when in the retracted position. After sending a few pens out to especially fidgety people, I'm confident these new mechanisms are virtually indestructible.
A lot of people have been asking if the new mechanism will work with older pens. Sadly, it will not. We have had to enlarge all parts enough that the new mechanism just won't fit in older pens. Also, the longer stroke distance these newer mechanisms have wouldn't work with the older pens.
This question is usually the first thing people ask about.
The Mover is the slightly longer version that comes with a 0.38mm Pilot G2 with black ink refill. These allow many refills to fit and most require no modification at all. The mechanisms on these require all refills to be the same length, so some require slight trimming, but if you are determined there are lots of options.
The Shaker is slightly shorter and comes with a Schmidt Easy Flow 9000 medium point with black ink and will fit all other "Parker style" refills..
Both pens fit well in almost all hands, though if you have larger hands you might be more comfortable with a Mover. Shakers tend to fit better in shirt pockets without sticking out.
I got a lot of feedback from the first pens and I found out that there are lots of different ways people grip pens. Instead of just having the signature Tactile Turn texture on just the front of the pen, it is along the entire length of the body. This pen won't slip out of your hands! A big plus is that the texture also hides small scratches making these pens look pristine even after lots of hard use!
These new small parts that need to be made required a "Swiss" lathe. These lathes are specifically meant for small and intricate parts. I was able to buy one of these earlier this year and after a few months of prototyping we now have the process down. Here is an introduction to the machine and some footage of it cutting the internal part of the mechanism out of brass for show. The real parts are only made from titanium, but to be able to turn off the coolant and show you guys what's happening brass is the right material.
People sometimes get the impression that CNC machining is magic and if you can think it up, you can make it. That is true, but to get those ideas turned into reality requires a lot of research for tools and programming. It takes quite a bit of time to get programs and tools really sorted out and ready for production. Early on I was using a tool to do an internal groove that would make two parts before breaking. We need to be able to make thousands of parts, so that tools just wasn't going to cut it. Making one of something is hard, making thousands of something and retaining quality and holding tolerances is another level of difficulty.
We have actually been in production making parts for these pens since the beginning of September. The plan is to have pens delivered by Christmas, but because this project might attract a lot of backers I am conservatively estimating delivery to be January in a latest case scenario.
I've decided to keep the materials on this project a little more tame. The new lathe requires special material and getting some of the more exotic materials to work was going to be very hard. That said, I always select amazing materials that are proven to hold up well during daily use. I've also found a great shop to do anodizing where I can count on quality and consistency, so we have nine new colors of anodized pens!
I wanted to bring back aluminum because people love a little color in their pens! I'm using the 6061 alloy that is much easier to achieve excellent results in anodizing this time. It is strong and extremely light weight, so if you know you want a light weight pen these will be for you. Available in 9 different colors, you can certainly find the perfect pen! All parts of these pens are made from aluminum except the clip which is stainless steel and the mechanism that is titanium. The anodized aluminum colors are: black, clear (light silver), red, green, blue, gray, purple, pink, and orange.
360 brass is a beautiful material that has a fairly high copper content so it has many of the antimicrobial properties that copper does. It machines beautifully and as you see the machining videos of these pens you'll see why I like to work with it. All parts of these pens are made from brass except the clip which is stainless steel and the mechanism that is titanium.
These pens are made from 304 stainless steel, which is extremely tough and corrosion resistant and should last for generations. This is truly an heirloom quality pen that will take any abuse you can give it and still look great. All parts of these pens are made from stainless steel except the mechanism which is titanium.
145 copper, also known as Tellurium copper, is an alloy of copper that is made for machining. Obviously, the copper content in this alloy is extremely high so it has the best natural antimicrobial properties for those of you that want a pen that you can let others use and still feel like you don't have to scrub grime off every day. All parts of these pens are made from copper except the clip which is stainless steel and the mechanism that is titanium.
Titanium is tough, lightweight, and extremely corrosion resistant. All parts are grade 5, also known as 6AL-4V. After meeting some great people in the industry and having plenty of experience with the material, I have been able to bring the titanium price point down significantly. All parts of these pens are made from titanium except the clip which is stainless steel.
These pens will feature two hidden easter eggs. On the under side of the clip the Tactile Turn name will be spelled out as well as the Kickstarter K logo to denote that these pens are from the Kickstarter. All pens after these will feature the year the pens were made which will allow everyone to know where their pens fit in the timeline. The goal being that early models will now be identifiable and have extra collector status.
If you want more than one pen select the first pen you want as a reward to the right, then add the funds for whichever other pen or pens that you want. Do not add any extra funds for shipping as the $3 for people in the USA or $7 for those that are international is all you will ever need to pay for shipping. At the end of the campaign I will get all backers over to a platform where you can tell me exactly what you pledged for and you can select Mover or Shaker as well as color if you want aluminum pens.
As you see on the pledges, these are expected to be delivered by January of 2018. I am hoping to deliver all before Christmas, but because I don't know how well this campaign will do, I wanted to make sure to add in some extra time. We are keeping the machines running about 100 hours a week, and will continue to do so for quite a while. If you need a unique pen ASAP, you can go to my website and order one and have it in a few days.
These pens can fit quite a few refills, though some require slight modification. If you're familiar with the older mechanisms, lots of refills had to "plug the hole in the refill". That isn't necessary any longer because the mechanism has a much larger plunger. See these lists if you want to know what refills will work.
Risks and challenges
I'm extremely fortunate to have run several Kickstarter projects. I've run into nearly every obstacle that can be run into. Because of those obstacles and previous successful campaigns I decided it was worthwhile to begin production early to limit problems. We are on track to have all of the parts necessary to fulfill all Kickstarter orders on time no matter how well this project does.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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