Lamy 2000 Multipen

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Let us start this review with its conclusion – if you want/need to own a ballpoint multipen, the Lamy 2000 multi is the way to go. I have a handful of multi-pens, including the Lamy 4-pen, but none of them deliver multipen benefits while minimizing multipen compromises as nicely as the Lamy 2000.

The benefits of multipens are obvious – multiple colors conveniently located in one pen body. Everyone’s multipen use cases will be different. For me, I find it helpful to have more colors in one pen body while tutoring individual students. Getting efficient at switching colors on the fly can take a bit of practice, but with a bit of memorization and practice you should be able to switch colors without looking. For the Lamy 2000, I know that the clip represents the black refill, a 1/4 turn from the clip and away from me (I’m a lefty) is the blue refill, 180 degrees from the clip is the red refill and 1/4 turn towards me is the green refill.

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Some multipens rely on dedicated sliders for each refill. Others, like the Lamy 2000, rely on one button, a gravity-based swapping mechanism inside and color indicators on the body. The former of these systems will use long, thin refills while the latter of these systems use D1 type refills. Personally. I much prefer the one-button-gravity approach as it (a) allows for a more refined looking pen, (b) seems to allow the pen body to have a thinner diameter and, perhaps most importantly, (c) does not tie you to proprietary refills. Before elaborating on point (c), let me come back to point (b) a bit more. I don’t know what it is about fat multipens but I just do not like them. I enjoy a big ‘ol fountain pen as much as the next person. When it comes to ballpoints and other non-fountain pen types, I much prefer no-so-fat designs.

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Back to issues associated with multipen refills. I am glad to be proven wrong, but I do not know of any slider-type multiple pen refills from one brand that work in the pen body of another. Even if there are such instances, the amount of cross over with slider-type refills will be minimal compared to the variety of brands and inks available in D1 refills (here is the page from Cult Pens showing various D1 options). That brings up another factor. With single-button gravity systems that use D1 refills, your multipen is not limited to being just a ballpoint or just a gel pen. The same D1-based multipen can hold your preferred ballpoint refill (or two) along with a gel option or two. With this kind of flexibility, I may yet find a combination that turns a multipen like the Lamy 2000 into “That ONE Pen”.

Can I just get away with saying the pen is German and be done with the build quality part of the review? Maybe not, but like all of Lamy’s products, the 2000 Multipen is well made. The button mechanism has just the right amount of tension and I can correctly deploy the color I want 95% of the time without looking. (I just went 19 for 20 on a random and rapid refill selection test.) There is some mechanical rattle when you twirl the pen around that completely goes away once you deploy a refill. I have yet to met a multipen that is 100% quiet 100% of the time so I would not mark the 2000 down for this issue. Besides, the rattle provides a nice bit of white noise when twirling the pen and thinking.

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One (minor) negative point – there is a small amount of left/right wiggle to the clip. Clips on all Lamy 2000 pens (fountain, roller, ballpoint, multi) have a hinge that allows the bottom of the clip to move away from the body. This feature is helpful when securing the pen to thicker material like the front pocket of your jeans but it leads to a bit of clip wiggle perpendicular to the body of the pen.

Back to the positives. As is true for the entire Lamy 2000 line of pens, the black fiberglass (aka Makrolon) body is lightweight, sturdy and tactile. It may pick up a scratch or two here and there but those marks just make the pen yours.

Lastly, in terms of build quality and design, the body of the pen is actually two pieces. However, the seam that separates the grip area piece from the rest of the pen is barely noticeable. The pen looks and feels like one piece of fiberglass.

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The Lamy 2000 ballpoint D1 refills are among the best D1 refills I have used. Save for the green, all the colors are reasonably vibrate for ballpoint inks and each refill gives a smooth but not slippery ride. Somebody should investigate the science behind this issue, but I have yet to find a green ballpoint ink that really pops. On the positive front, the red color is nice and bright, the black is as dark as I’ve ever seen for a ballpoint and the blue is very much a true blue. I think I have a broad orange D1 Lamy refill around here somewhere that I might swap into the 2000’s green position. Lastly, the Lamy D1 refills have a small bulge near the tip the refill. This part clearly shows the color of the refill while also making sure the refill fits securely through the tip. A small but clever bit of design.

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So, there you have it. If you ask me (and by coming here, you sort of did), the Lamy 2000 multipen may be the only multipen you need. The design and build are top-notch for a multipen and the Lamy D1 refills, which you are not tied to, are among the best D1 ballpoints I have tried. The list price on this pen is around $90 but can be readily had for $75 or less with a bit of shopping around.

The Lamy 2000 Multipen was recently highlighted in the Pens and Pencils I Actually Use post.

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(non)Disclaimer:  My money…my pen…my thoughts.

11 thoughts on “Lamy 2000 Multipen

  1. You”ve got me thinking about a new purchase!

    I use my Pilot Coleto Lumio black at work, and actually love the width and design. Plus, the refills are great for width and color choice.

    In the other hand, the Lumio’s plastic body is very light, and the aesthetics are only good, not great, like the Lamy’s.

    Do you know of a D-1 refill that is liquid or gel? Could you weigh the pen, by chance?

    Thanks for another great review.

    1. Michael – Here is the list of d1 refills available from JetPens. The number of options is substantial.

      I don’t have a balance here at home, but to my hand it is clearly lighter than the Lamy 4-Pen I have. I’d put the Lamy 2000 multi around 18 grams.

  2. Thanks for another really well written and very informative review of what is an excellent pen. I have one of these and rate it very highly. I use this and the Lamy 2000 mechanical pencil all of the time, when taking notes and writing drafts of documents. I rate the Lamy M21 refills as some of the best ballpoints on the market. It can also use the Pilot Hi-Tec C slim 0.4 refill, if you prefer. Another multi-pen that is also very good is the Platinum Double R3 action. Whilst this only holds two D1 ballpoint/gel colours, it also has a 0.5mm mechanical pencil and eraser as well. It is a very cheap, and well made pen. As an aside, you can buy it in numerous colours, and if you look at some Japanese sellers’ sites, such as engeika.com, you will see that it also comes with some very interesting decorated barrels (which may not be to everyone’s taste, but are a serious attempt to do something innovative). I can’t make up my mind whether I prefer the Lamy or this pen but use both of them all of the time. What I really like about your reviews is that you test pens for the daily user and not the collector. Best wishes and keep up the great reviews.

    1. Thanks for stopping by Chandon. Glad to hear you find the reviews helpful. I’ll be sure to check out engeika.

  3. I lost one of these a few years ago and miss it sorely for most of the reasons in this review. I say most since at the time I didn’t know of alternative refills (was Jetpens around in 2008). It’s great even with the stock Lamy ballpoints. Far slicker and more subtle than other multipens.

  4. Thanks for the review. To your knowledge is it possible to use a mechanical pencil refill with this Lamy multi pen?

    1. The Lamy 2000 Multi cannot take a mechanical pencil refill, at least not without substantial hacking. The internals to support a mechanical pencil are different than those needed for simple D1 refill. Multi-pens that support a mechanical pencil typically have a long metal rod in the position dedicated to the pencil refill while the spots for the D1 refills are little more than a hole. Lamy does make another multi-pen called the Accent that does incorporate a pencil. I have an Accent and it’s pretty good but I think I bought the wrong version for me. It comes in two flavors: (1) black body with a metal grip section or (2) a silver body with a black rubber grip. I bought the first style but I find the grip section gets uncomfortable after writing for a few minutes. I will likely get the version with the rubber grip some day in the hopes that I can get a pencil in a more comfortable Lamy multi-pen.

  5. Reblogged this on KurleyMcD and commented:
    A recent addition to the collection. Love it. Will post my own thoughts at some point but this review on thatonepen.com gives an excellent description.

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