Review – Poquitos Part 2 – Monteverde Ballpoint/Stylus and Fountain Pen

I had the regular Yafa brand Poquitos for quite some time before ever even hearing about the brand Monteverde, which is one of the many brands of “inexpensive” luxury pens that Yafa owns. Monteverde mainly has their own line of pens that could be completely separated from Yafa, but recently I discovered Monteverde was releasing a set of pens under the same name and similarly styled to the Yafa Poquito. This, of course, confused me, until I found out the companies’ relationship. The two Monteverde Poquitos have both similarities and differences when compared to the regular Yafa versions. Let’s take a look.

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First up is the fountain pen, which is styled very similarly to the original Poquito, but because it is a fountain pen, it is slightly larger, a little longer, and about twice as thick. The tip of the cap has the same “stylus” as on the smaller pens, and the clip is almost identical. The pen is also made of brass, but seems to be painted better, and Poquito is written right on the cap.

Being a fountain pen, it accepts cartridges (of the standard international variety), but there are no converters designed for it. Some small converters can be finagled into working, but none are advertised as doing so. The nib (which is only available in medium) and feed are relatively dry, but that is the case with many pens with similar nib and feed types (plastic, iridium point, German made) and many inks are designed to work well with this type of pen. The section is stainless steel (I think) and gets slick upon prolonged use. And the pen is too short to hold comfortably without posting. But the pen is still super small, and is absolutely ideal for taking quick notes provided one finds an ink that works well with it.

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In addition to their release of the fountain pen, Monteverde also released a new version of the regular ballpoint Poquito, called the Poquito Stylus (and funnily enough, they also released the Poquito Stylus XL which is almost the size of the Largo). The pen has the same writing and mechanism end as the Yafa Poquito (which is the only part that the Poquitos share). But on the other end, a touch-screen stylus of average size replaces the old hard “stylus” point, which was really useless. This new stylus works quite well, though it can be a bit broad at times. The clip design has also changed. It works just as well, and looks a little nicer, in my opinion, but is more likely to damage the item it is clipped onto. The ballpoint itself is identical to the older pen, with refills being the same.

Overall, the Monteverde versions of the Poquito pens are quite small, and quite functional. They haven’t really fixed any of the problems with the standard Yafa versions, but the added benefits of a fountain pen and stylus (for the people that like to use them) are great. All of the Poquitos are hardy little pens that serve well, and can go almost anywhere. The Monteverde versions just add a little more style and a little more usage variation.

 

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Review – Poquitos Part 1 – Yafa Ballpoint and Pencil

Some things are better small, and the Yafa Poquito, being one of the first pens I got, proved that to me. It was exceptional for my small hands at the time. But how does the set compare now?

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The Yafa Poquito pens have metal bodies that come in various colors. The top of the pen is a bit of a rounded-off cone, and the top of the pencil has a small steel button. The clips are tight and almost identical, with the pen’s being pointed, and the pencil’s being round. The bodies of both utensils taper from the middle to each end, with the center band being separate in the pen and attached to the mechanism in the pencil. The metal tip of the pencil is also part of the mechanism, whereas in the pen it is part of the body. The bodies are quite solid, but the paint will wear off with time and a bit of use. Consider getting a silver or brass one to fix that if you mind.

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The pencil takes .7mm lead, and what it comes with it fairly standard, sometimes broken in transit. The mechanism is easy to use and quite sturdy. It would stand up to a bit of abuse. There is no play once the lead has been extruded, it doesn’t have “shocks” as it were, but the mechanism is separate from the pen body, and this creates a squeak now and then.

The pen is a smooth-writing fine cartridge. It is a ballpoint so there are occasional globs and hard starts. If left out for some time, the pen will be quite hard to start, but in this case a while is so long a time that one would expect it to. When it does flow, it is very smooth, and has almost no issues. It is not quite black, and waterproof, as most ballpoint blacks are.

The Poquitos pack quite a bit of punch for their size, being less than 4 inches long (and they still manage to fit relatively comfortably in the hand). And while they do have some flaws, they are far from from deal-breaking for having a pen or pencil there when you really need it. They serve best as backups and are miles ahead of small pens that don’t allow one to comfortably hold them or have very little ink. I’d say that in that category, Poquitos are at least worth a look.