4.Ever Pininfarina Cambiano pen

A Pen That Lasts Forever?

4.Ever Pininfarina Cambiano pen

Pen aficionados, this one is for you. Last year design firm Pininfarina unveiled a pen they claimed would last forever. First called the 4.Ever and now sold as either the Forever Pininfarina Cambiano or the Pininfarina Cambiano Everlasting Inkless Pen, this marvel of modern etching doesn’t require ink and is not made from graphite or any of the other usual materials.

Pininfarina, which is known for high-end car designs but does create other stuff as well, makes the tip of the pen from Ethergraph, a metal alloy. The marks it makes look more like pencil/graphite yet are as permanent as a pen. From the shape of the tip it looks like you have choice in line thickness. But no sharpening or changing the shape, apparently.

The pen itself is quite beautiful with walnut inlays and a grey or black aluminum body. At 39 grams it also appears to be a nice weight, though I haven’t touched it myself to judge the balance. Overall, it looks like the kind of upscale pen people regularly pay $100+ for, making the price of $119 (or 89 Euro) not at all out of line. From the pre-launch description I assumed it would cost a lot more (my guess was $3,000), if not because of the materials than because of the uniqueness factor.

If the claims are true, this pen will never run down or run out. I doubt any of us will be around long enough to judge if that’s true. Perhaps Pininfarina knows that it would take so long to wear down that you’ll be dead before it happens or they figure you’ll lose the pen.

Imagine what an heirloom this would make. Pass it down to your grandchildren along with your fountain pens and watch them marvel over old timey writing instruments.

I’m not quite as tempted by this as I am by some fountain pens because I’m a fan of glide and I’m not convinced this would glide the way I like. Still, considering the not-crazy-expensive price, I have a feeling that one of you may have one ready for next Month of Letters. Am I right? If you buy one, be sure to tell us all about it in the forums.

22 thoughts on “[Wayback Repost] Why do letters seem more daunting than email?”

  1. Having been a letter writer for several years now, I don’t particularly find this challenge all that difficult, other than remembering to do it every day instead of when the whim takes me to write. And since I may not have a penpal’s letter to answer, then I need to think outside my normal circle of penpals and write to others. I saw this as an opportunity to reconnect with a few old penpals that had lapsed, family members that live outside of the city, friends I haven’t seen in a while, and strangers or persons of stature. I think it’s a great challenge and maybe it will even boost the joy of those who process all this mail and deliver it to us. 🙂

  2. I love your post. And I totally agree.

    Email, tweets n twitters, FB comments all have their place and moment in time where they are the appropriate way to respond.

    However, sending a letter, postcard, or notecard is the only way to connect with someone on a more personal, even intimate, level.

    The act of sending a missive does take time, but more importantly it takes thought. What paper will I use? What will I add (stickers, washi, etc.)? What will I say? Combined these choices will be a bright spot in someone’s day. Added bonus? It was created specifically for them.

  3. Great article on postcard apps but you should also take a look at Postsnap’s easy to use postcard app.
    The app offers a number of unique features compared to the other apps reviewed including:
    – Guest checkout with Apple Pay
    – Extensive personalization options including collage layouts, stylish borders which can be adjusted in size with a slider and the option to add editable text in a variety of font types and colors and position it anywhere on the cards
    – iPhone and iPad support
    – Apple Pencil support
    – Facebook and Instagram integration
    – US postal address verification and UK postcode lookup
    Cards are printed and posted in our facilities in the UK, USA and Australia on the same or next working day and so cards typically arrive quickly. Enjoy!
    Stephen Homer

  4. I have been writing letters for several years now. My go to paper is Rhodia Premium or Rhodia Ice pads. I also Life pads too. I like them because they are not quite as slick as the Rhodia.

  5. I too love journals to pull apart for writing. For me the most important aspect of the paper is the pattern. I love to have some colour and some design on the paper. I’ve managed to find a number of nice colours and designs at one of my local “Home Sense” discount stores in the book section. Most of the small journals are a perfect size to fit in the envelopes I use. If not I just give one edge a bit of a trim (but sometimes I really like the ripped edge look too!) ;P

  6. Hi, Christmas cards & more recently a letter (a bill) from the UK to Australia have taken 3 weeks to arrive. The exterior of these envelopes were stamped with a mark such as this from the latest envelope:
    DLC 992-4
    The example quoted arrived at the Australian address on 28/07/2017, unfortunately it contained a bill dated 06/07/2017 which had to be paid within 14 days, by 20/07/2017.
    Why is the post so slow? What does the DLC 992-4 stamp signify? Would appreciate your feedback.

  7. My letter that I wrote was in September. The person who it was for still hasn’t gotten it and it’s now November….
    I don’t understand why it’s taking this long. I live in AZ and he lives in NY. I want answers.

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