PigPog and Cult Pens

Update: Almost two years later, things didn’t work out for Sam, but I’m (pigpogm/Michael) still working at Cult Pens.  We’ve kept expanding, and it’s a lot of fun.  The move to Devon has been great for both of us.

Regular readers will probably have noticed that many of our pen reviews mention and link to Cult Pens. At first, we just happened to buy some pens there, and linked to them because we liked the pens and the shop. Soon, they started giving us a little discount on our purchases in return for the linking, then they started sending us a few freebies to try out (always disclosed in the review). Well, the relationship is about to change a bit more.

Things aren’t fully settled yet – there’s an office move that’s trying to happen alongside it all – but all being well, as of the end of December, we’ll be working at Cult Pens.

Yes, both of us.

They’re hoping to move into new offices in Tiverton, Devon, and will be needing some help when they do. Between now and then, we’ll be moving from Nottinghamshire to Tiverton, into a house we need to find and rent. We have a lot to do. Probably not as much as Simon and Amanda, though 😉

So, what does this mean for PigPog? Not all that much, we think. PigPog will still be our site. We’ll still review pens, but now we’ll have access to a lot more of them. We’ll probably be a bit short on time for a while, with the move and new jobs, but things should settle down soon. I’m sure Simon and Amanda won’t base our performance reviews and pay reviews on how positive our pen reviews are. You’ll have to decide for yourself if you still trust our opinion on pens once we’re selling them for a living, but we’ll still try to be honest about them – we don’t want to sell crap pens.

For us personally, this is going to be a huge change. We’ll be working together as well as living together, which should be fun (unlike some married couples, we like each other). We’ll be moving from here to Tiverton, renting a new house, buying some new furniture, and taking two cats on a four hour drive to some new territory. We’ll both be starting new jobs, and dealing with an office move at the same time.

Things we’ve been holding back on recently…

  • We had a trip to Tiverton a couple of weeks ago, and met up with Simon and Amanda for a cross between a meal out and a tag-team job interview. Much better odds than most interviews, though – two of us against two of them 😉
  • We’ve not reviewed any Cult Pens stuff, because it didn’t seem fair to post a review without mentioning that this was going on, but at the same time, we couldn’t really announce anything until it was a bit more settled.
  • The UK is getting official supply of the Pilot Capless Decimo – a thinner and lighter version of the Capless fountain pen. Cult Pens has the first stock in the UK, as an exclusive. We’ll be doing a review very soon. After reading lots about the Capless, I’m looking forward to getting to actually try one.

Oh, and we’ll still try to talk about things other than pens.


1953 Coronation Pencil from F Chambers

Latest Update: Added a link to more coronation pencils at Dave’s Mechanical Pencils.

What Is It?

An oversized pencil, made in 1953 to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, on June 2nd.

1953 Coronation Pencil - Souvenir of THE CORONATION YEAR 1953


It was made by F Chambers, now know as Chambers Pencils, at their factory in Stapeford, Nottinghamshire.


I just spotted it whilst looking around on eBay, put in a nice low bid, and nobody else ever bid on it.


There isn’t a lot to say about a wooden pencil, especially one that’s not really intended for using, so we’ll just jump straight into the pics. Here’s the shiny gold presentation box it came in…

1953 Coronation Pencil - Box Closed

Opening the box shows the pencil, with its tip protected by a wad of cotton wool…

1953 Coronation Pencil - In Box

The pencil itself…

1953 Coronation Pencil - Souvenir of THE CORONATION YEAR 1953

1953 Coronation Pencil - F. CHAMBERS & CO. LTD

…includes a calendar for 1953, with the date of the coronation marked on it…

1953 Coronation Pencil - 1953 Calendar

The end – no eraser, just some shiny red and blue paint…

1953 Coronation Pencil - Top

Alongside some ordinary pencils for scale…

1953 Coronation Pencil - With Other Pencils

1953 Coronation Pencil - With Other Pencils - Points

Does it Work?

It’s not really meant to be used – it’s a bit on the big side – but it is a real pencil, and yes, it does work…

1953 Coronation Pencil - It Works!

Getting Your Own

I don’t know of any others of the same type, but you could always keep an eye on eBay – try a search for coronation pencil.


Moleskine City Books

Latest Update: The City Books should be in stores from the start of November – Moleskinerie has details of stockists in the US and Canada. Thanks, Armand!

There’s an interesting new announcement from MoleskineArt about the Moleskine City Book. It has an odd mix of features…

  • They’ll have some city information printed in them – maps, street indexes, etc.
  • Detachable sheets, much like some of the current models have.
  • Blank pages.
  • Translucent sheets for tracing – a quick way of copying a map, for example.
  • Adhesive labels.

European Cities, available later this year…

  • Amsterdam
  • Barcelona
  • Berlin
  • Dublin
  • Lisboa
  • London
  • Madrid
  • Milano
  • Paris
  • Praha
  • Roma
  • Wien

American Cities, available in spring 2007…

  • Boston
  • Chicago
  • Los Angeles
  • Miami
  • Montreal (in America? Are you sure, Modo e Modo?)
  • New York
  • San Francisco (How could they not make one for Merlin?)
  • Washington

Sounds like a great product if you live in, or are visiting, a city they cover, but I can’t see them making one for Bingham, the village we live in, any time soon, so they won’t be a lot of use to us.

Head on over to MoleskineArt’s announcement for more info – click the piccie to see the promo stuff in full size to get a much better idea of how they’ll look.

Everything Must GO!

UPDATE – The copy of Getting Things Done I had for sale is now sold. Sorry folks. But there’s plenty more to see!

In keeping with the spirit of the season, as the trees shed their leaves so must we shed books, CDs, DVDs, pens, electronics and all manner of unwanted hoo-haa. Yep, we’re having a much needed clearout of all of our stuff, and you, humble viewer, have the opportunity to obtain some of our once-treasured possessions!

Everything Must Go!

We’re being ruthless and downright cold-hearted about what we’re chucking out. Sentimentality and that misguided notion that “it might come in useful one day” (not to mention the delusional “it might be worth something one day”) has left us with a massive amount of stuff that quite frankly we do not need. So, Michael’s selling away on eBay, and I’ve set up shop at Amazon Marketplace.

Bargains by the Bucketload!

So what sort of stuff are we parting company with? Well, over on eBay, you can bid on…

  • The Original Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Game – Complete with floppy disk, microscopic space fleet and Joo Janta 200 Super-Chromatic Peril-Sensitive Sunglasses.

  • Psion Series 3a Organizer – When I started going out with Michael back in ’96, this 3a was his “system”. Since then he’s had Palm Tungstens, an iPAQ and now he’s reached his technological peak with… a filofax. My man is turning into quite the luddite. Well, he can’t use fountain pens on his Tablet PC.

  • Orange SPV Smartphone – and he’s selling off a mobile too. Presumably he’s planning to replace this with a paper cup on a a string. I’m still using my SPV, since the model that followed it turned out to be, to quote Merlin Mann, made of human ass. It’s not a bad phone, it makes calls, it takes calls, takes photos if it can be bothered…

Oh, and he’s also selling pens. Lots and lots of pens. This is because we were going to do a market stall this year, but changed our minds once we remembered just how well it went last year…

Over on Amazon Marketplace, I have about 40 different books, CDs, DVDs and videos up for grabs, including…

  • Neighbors (VHS Tape) – No, not the Aussie soap. This is a dark and utterly bizarre comedy film starring Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi. This was John Belushi’s last film, and it’s quite an oddity. Here’s the entry for Neighbors on IMDB.

  • Getting Things Done (Paperback) – What can I say? The Book about The System by The David. Michael has graciously allowed me to sell his copy, since there are plenty of GTD resources online. Like here, for example. SOLD!

  • Writing Down The Bones (Paperback) – It’s a battered little book that has spent many years travelling with me. A cracking little book which encouraged me to start writing without the hassle of the inner critic.

So, stop by Amazon or eBay now and grab yourself a great deal. Or just grab yourself. It’s really up to you.