Livescribe 3 ink, rattle and slip…

Generic Refills for Livescribe 3 are now available at our eBay listing.

We’ve been using the Livescribe 3 (LS3) for a little while now.  The OEM ink is much better than the OEM ink for the Pulse, Echo or Sky but it still has a high coefficient of friction.  What does this mean? It means that the ink flows out of the ball point slowly which keeps the ball from rolling easily across the page.  We were happy to start using our new Generic Refills for Livescribe 3 because as you know, our premium German ink is silky smooth! This really helps improve the writing experience with the Livescribe 3 pen.

One thing we noticed right away with the OEM refills and unfortunately with our Generic Refills too:  Livescribe has designed the end of the LS3 to be a little too wide for their own refills as well as other ball point pen refills.  In addition, the end of the pen is metallic so every time you the pen touches the paper, there is a little click or rattle.  If you shake the LS3 with one of our Generic Refills or the OEM refill,  it sounds like a baby’s rattle!! This is not really acceptable for such an expensive pen as the LS3!

Some of our customers have told us that they use a single layer of Scotch tape on their refills to mostly eliminate the metal-on-metal click.  Please be careful when doing this!  The refill fits into a pressure sensor and it must be able to tell the pen when it is not touching the paper. More than one layer of Scotch tape can prevent the refill from moving properly and your Livescribe writing will look like a complete scrawl… the infrared camera gets stuck in the on position and its reading dot patterns where ever its pointed, regardless of whether you are touching the refill tip to the paper or not!

We are investigating a sturdier alternative to Scotch tape.  One of our other worries is that a piece of Scotch tape will break off and foul the sensor, deep inside the pen.  This would not be good!

Finally, those of you with smaller hands may be having trouble gripping the Livescribe pen.  We think its because the barrel is completely round like the original Pulse pen.  On top of that, the plastic barrel is quite slippery to the touch.  This might cause you to grip more tightly and that will cause hand fatigue.  It might be possible to use a silicone pen grip to help solve this problem. More details to follow.

The Livescribe 3 is an amazing piece of technology but its not perfect.  Hopefully, Livescribe will pay more attention to the aesthetics of writing and address these concerns.  It won’t do any good for those of us that have already purchased the Livescribe 3 (one problem with being an early adopter!) but could make the next iteration of the pen better for all of us!

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