Pentel Stylo/PulaMan. The tip of this pen might look a little strange. The felt tip of pen is centered and sandwiched by two sections. The longer section gives a little more resistance when a downward pressure is applied. The reason it looks like this is because in 1978, this pen was designed to be a cheaper replacement for fountain pens. The tip of this pen resembles a fountain pen, and it was named PulaMan. (Pula is short for plastic, and this pen is also nicknamed plastic fountain pen). It was during the time when ballpoint pens were on the rise and fountain pens were declining. To get more students to use fountain pen, companies like Sailor came out with a popular beginner fountain pen “Candy” during 70’s, and PulaMan was Pentel’s response. The pen writes smoothly and provides a wide range of line widths, similar to a fountain pen.
In 1993, Pentel released Tradio, which is an upgraded design of PulaMan. It has a better tip, and a replaceable core. Even with the newly designed Tradio, Pentel still keeps the original design of PulaMan from 1978. In the States, the pen is called Stylo.
Tradio is more like a product line by Pentel now. Pentel is re-using the same Tradio body with Energel refill, PulaMan plastic fountain pen refill and also an actual fountain pen. Tradio was supposed to be plastic fountain pen, but there’s also a version with actual fountain pen? Now that’s confusing!