01 – Design

It all began with a unique design in post WWII France. A man named Marcel Bich had spent years working as an ink maker for fountain pens but when he saw an early ballpoint pen during the war, his interest was piqued. Unfortunately the pen alternated between leaking and clogging randomly while writing- Marcel knew there had to be a better way.




So he invested in new manufacturing equipment from Switzerland that could shape a metal ball down to an incredible .01mm tolerance. With this innovation he was able to make ballpoints that fit precisely in a pen tip so that ink could flow out but not without the user intending to write(Phaidon Design Classics 2006). To this day, the Bic design center in Paris continues innovating on this concept, experimenting with new materials and processes to increase efficiency and precision. In an age of outsourcing, Bics plants remain in France and employee over 10,000 people- a major boon to economic and social development in the country.

8 thoughts on “01 – Design

  1. Why do companies keep thinking that they need to fix what is NOT broken to stay “stylish” or “relevant”?
    Take the Bic pen. Yes the clear stick with the beautiful solid brass tip you could ice skate on. Remember that commercial? I LOVED those pens.
    In 1972 ish that beautiful brass tip became plastic and I’ve never really forgiven them but I still used them. Then they did away with the Accountant Fine Point that I divorced them for. Now they’ve changed the ink to a sissified light blue that is nothing like the original.

  2. Currently staring at the 2022 Black BIC pen, to my left there is the 2021 version (Black) and to my right a vintage 2013 (Blue). I could not help but notice that the older of the three is no longer as clear as the other two, it has still kept it transparency however it has turned a sort of yellow colour. My first thought to this was that the sun had faded it throughout years as it had been left in the sunlight, however I can vividly remember the packaging which stated that the sun would not discolour the pen, in fact it was the main selling point hence why I had bought this pen. Unless BIC inc has lied to me as well as millions of other trusty worthy customers i cannot for the life of me think the reason as to why the pen faded. Anyone have any suggestions?

  3. Not really sure
    If BIC is the right pen brand for me
    Going to the shops now will update on what i buy
    Guess what pen i got!
    Everyone should be able to get it

  4. just sat here a week later staring at the same pen, Although it is appearance is similar to the brown stuff that comes out of my anus (not a looker).

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