The Ultimate Guide to Pen Refills: How to Find the Right Ink for Your Pen (2023)

By Samantha Di Nardo

Parker Fountain pen ink refills

The Ultimate Guide to Pen Refills: How to Find the Right Ink for Your Pen (2023)

By Samantha Di Nardo

‌Are‌ ‌you‌ ‌looking‌ ‌for‌ ‌a‌ ‌new‌ ‌refill‌ ‌for‌ ‌your‌ ‌favorite‌ luxury pen?‌ ‌Are‌ ‌you‌ confused‌ ‌on‌ ‌which‌ ‌replacement‌ ‌refill‌ ‌will‌ ‌fit‌ ‌your‌ ‌pen?‌ ‌

Here’s‌ ‌the‌ ‌definitive‌ ‌guide‌ ‌to‌ ‌help‌ you‌ ‌find‌ ‌the‌ ‌right‌ ‌refill‌ ‌for‌ ‌your‌ ‌pen. If you have a gold Cross pen or a Waterman Expert pen (or any other sort of pen for that matter), this guide is for you!

It can be frustrating to spend money and wasting delivery times on a refill only to find out that it doesn’t fit. It might take some digging to figure out which brand of ink cartridge fits which pen: this article is meant to do a lot of the digging for you. 

Here's why it takes digging:

Some pen brands take standard refill sizes, so you can buy generic or off-brand pen ink cartridges (and these are usually cheaper and of exactly the same quality), but others have specific profiles and sizes that fit only their pens. 

So, what do you need to know when your Cross pen or any other luxury pen needs an ink refill?

  1. You need to know which pen cartridge types are compatible for, say, Cross pen refills.
  2. You need to know where to find them.
  3. You need to know where they're the most affordable.

By following this guide you’ll learn how to find the right refill for your pens.

How Do You Find the Right Ink Refill?

1.) Find Information on the Make and Model of the Pen

Start by identifying your pen’s model and make. Go ahead and use this information to find the right pen cartridge type that fits it perfectly. 

A good place to start would be on the manufacturer’s website. Do they mention the specific refill options that go with your pen type? 

If not, consider checking with retailers or reviewers. 

Is it a pen that’s available at Dayspring Pens? Go to the “shop by style” tab on our site, then click on the ink refill section on the far right. You will find refill options that fit your Cross, Waterman, or Parker pens. Here’s a screenshot to guide you.

SHOP BY STYLE

2.) Inspect the Refill for Any Identifying Marks

Cross rollerball ink refillCross Brand Selectip Rollerball Refills

Not sure what brand or make yours is? Check your refill for identifying marks.

Can you see a model number or manufacturer logo?

Search the web using the identifying mark and see what options you can find.

You could ask other users of luxury pens online for recommendations as well. Make use of online forums such as the fountain pen network, Reddit, and Quora

Be careful when using model numbers, though. It’s not uncommon to find similar model numbers that are designed for different pen cartridge type sizes. Check the specifications to make sure the new refill matches your pen type.

Consider Searching for Similar-Looking Ink Refills

Cross Brand Ballpoint pen ink refill

AT Cross Brand - Ballpoint Pen Refill

If you can’t find a branded refill, chances are there are no specialized refill options for your pen type. 

You can also contact the manufacturer online and see if they can offer any recommendations. Alternatively, you can search for a different refill of the same style that’s compatible with your pen.

Note: Only use this method if the first two fail. A similar-looking refill of the same style can have slight variations causing compatibility issues. 

Refill Chart Guide

 Ballpoint Refill Guide

ACME

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction
  • ACME European Length Ballpoint Refill

Aurora

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • A2 Retractable Refill
  • Standard G1

Baron Fig

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Caran d’Ache

  • Caran d’Ache 828 Refill
  • Caran d’Ache Goliath 
  • Caran d’Ache Ecridor XS
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Coles

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Conklin

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Cross

  • Cross Style C1 Refill
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction
  • Cross Matrix 8572

Dayspring Pens

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Diplomat

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Faber-Castell

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Fisher Space Pen

  • Fisher Space Pen Pressurized Refill
  • Cross Style C1 Refill
  • Fisher Pressurized Universal U Refill

Graf von Faber-Castell

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Hugo Boss

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Kaweco

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Laban

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

LAMY 

  • LAMY M16 Ballpoint Refill
  • LAMY M22 Mini Ballpoint Refill
  • LAMY M21 D1 Refill
  • LAMY M55 Tripen Marker Ballpoint Refill

Montblanc

  • Montblanc Ballpoint Refill
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Montegrappa

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Monteverde

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Ohto

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction
  • Ohto Ballpoint Refill
  • Ohto Slimline Ballpoint Refill
  • Ohto Tasche Petite No.705NP

Online

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • A2 Retractable Refill
  • King Size G1 Refill

Otto Hutt

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Fisher Space Pen Pressurized Refill

Parker

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Pelikan

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Pilot

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Platinum

  • Platinum Ballpoint Refill
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction
  • Platinum Ballpoint BSP-60 Stick Refill
  • Platinum BSP-100N Refill

Retro

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Schmidt

  • A2 Retractable Ballpoint Refill
  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction
  • Fisher Space Pen Pressurized Refill
  • Schmidt MegaLine 4889 Ballpoint Refill
  • Schmidt MegaLine 4867 Ballpoint Refill

Visconti 

  • Standard/Parker-Style G-2

Waterman

  • Waterman Ballpoint Refill
  • Waterman Titane CF Ballpoint Refill

Yard-o-Led

  • A2 Retractable Ballpoint Refill
  • Mini D-1 Size/Multifunction

Access the Ballpoint Refill Guide PDF here!

 

Rollerball Refill Guide

ACME

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Standard Capless Rollerball Refill (Schmidt P8126)

Baron Fig

  • Standard Capless Rollerball Refill (Schmidt P8126)

Caran d’Ache

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Coles

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Conklin

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Cross

  • Cross Selectip Rollerball Refill
  • Cross Slim Gel 8910 Rollerball Refill
  • Cross Ion and Matrix 8516 Rollerball Refill

Dayspring Pens

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Diplomat

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Esterbrooke

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Faber-Castell

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Faber-Castell Magnum Rollerball Refill

Kaweco 

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Parker Style G-2 Rollerball Refill

Laban

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

LAMY

  • LAMY Rollerball M62/M63 Rollerball Refill
  • LAMY M66 Retractable Rollerball Refill

Montblanc

  • Montblanc Rollerball Refill
  • Montblanc Small Rollerball Refill
  • Montblanc LeGrand Rollerball Refill
  • Montblanc Capless Rollerball Refill

Montegrappa

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Standard Capless Rollerball Refill (Schmidt P8126)
  • Schmidt Long Capless 8126 Rollerball Refill
  • Schmidt Mini 8126 Capless Rollerball Refill

Monteverde

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Monteverde J22 Mini Rollerball Refill

Ohto

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Parker Style G-2 Rollerball Refill

Otto Hutt

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Parker

  • Parker Rollerball Refill
  • Parker 5th Rollerball Refill

Pelikan

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Pelikan Level 5 Rollerball Refill
  • Pelikan 338 Rollerball Refill

Pilot

  • Pilot G-2 Gel Refill

Platinum

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Retro

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Standard Capless Rollerball Refill (Schmidt P8126)
  • Schmidt Long Capless 8126 Rollerball Refill

Sailor

  • Sailor Rollerball Refill

Schmidt

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Standard Capless Rollerball Refill (Schmidt P8126)
  • Schmidt Long Capless 8126 Rollerball Refill
  • Schmidt Mini 8126 Capless Rollerball Refill

Sheaffer

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill
  • Sheaffer Standard Rollerball Refill
  • Sheaffer Ion Rollerball 8516 Refill
  • Cross Slim Gel 8910 Rollerball Refill

S.T. Dupont

  • S.T. Dupont Rollerball Refill
  • Schmidt Mini 8126 Capless Rollerball Refill

Tombow

  • Tombow Rollerball Refill

Waterman

  • Waterman Rollerball Refill

Visconti

  • Standard Ceramic/Euro-Format Rollerball Refill

Yard-o-Led

  • Schmidt RollingSupersteel Refill

Access the Rollerball Refill Guide PDF here!

 Fountain Refill Guide

ACME

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Aurora

  • Aurora Fountain Pen Converter
  • Aurora Fountain Pen Ink Cartridge

BENU

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Caran d’Ache

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Cartier

  • Cartier Vendome Ink Cartridge
  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Cartier Fountain Pen Piston Converter

Coles

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Conklin

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Cross

  • Cross Standard Ink Converter
  • Cross Slim Ink Cartridge
  • Cross Standard Ink Cartridge

Dayspring Pens

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Diplomat

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Faber-Castell

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • 75mm Ink Converter

Franklin-Cristoph

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Graf von Faber-Castell

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Hugo Boss

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Jinhao

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Kaweco

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • Kaweco Mini Ink Converter
  • Kaweco Ink Converter

Laban

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

LAMY

  • LAMY LT10 Ink Cartridge
  • LAMY Z27 Ink Converter
  • LAMY Z28 Ink Converter

Montblanc

  • Montblanc Ink Cartridge
  • Montblanc Ink Converter

Montegrappa

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • 75mm Ink Converter
  • Montegrappa Long Ink Cartridge

Monteverde

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Namiki

  • Pilot/Namiki Ink Cartridge
  • Pilot/Namiki Ink Converter

Noodler’s

  • Noodler’s Ink Converter

Ohto

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Online

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • Online Combi Fountain Pen Ink Cartridge
  • 75mm Ink Converter

Otto Hutt

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Parafernalia

  • Parafernalia Lady Austria Ink Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Parker

  • Parker Quink Ink Cartridge
  • Parker Quink Mini Ink Cartridge
  • Parker Ink Converter

Pelikan

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • Long Standard Ink Cartridge

Pilot

  • Pilot/Namiki Ink Cartridge
  • Pilot/Namiki Ink Converter

Pineider

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Pineider Ink Level Piston Converter
  • 75mm Ink Converter

Platinum

  • Platinum Ink Cartridge
  • Platinum Ink Converter

Platignum

  • Platignum Ink Cartridge
  • Platignum Ink Converter

Retro 51

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Rotring

  • Rotring Rapidograph Ink Cartridge
  • Rotring ArtPen Ink Converter

Sailor

  • Sailor Chalana Slim Ink Cartridge
  • Sailor Jentle Ink Cartridge
  • Sailor Ink Converter

Schneider

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Schneider Ink Converter

Sheaffer 

  • Sheaffer Skrip Classic Ink Cartridge
  • Sheaffer Ink Converter
  • Standard International Cartridge

Schmidt

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

ST Dupont

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • 75mm Ink Converter

Stipula

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Regal

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Regal RC-03 Ink Converter

Tibaldi

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • 75mm Ink Converter

TWSBI

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Visconti

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter
  • 75mm Ink Converter

Waterman

  • Waterman Ink Cartridge (long)
  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Waterman Ink Converter

Worther

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Yafa

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

Yard-o-Led 

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • Standard Ink Converter

YStudio

  • Standard International Cartridge
  • YStudio Ink Converter

Zebra

  • Zebra V301 Ink Cartridge

Access the Fountain Refill Guide PDF here!

ISO Standard Refill Types

Many brands adhere to the same standards of size (ISO 12757-1:2017 and ISO 14145-1:2016) when making their pens. This is why most refill sizes have the same dimensions even though the pens are from different makers.

Are you still in doubt about the right refill replacement to use? One of these standard refill styles could be it. 

The D1 Refill

Multi-pen with D1 refillImage from: inkdependence.com

These are short and slim refills usually seen in small multi-function pens.

It’s worth noting that a lot of brands make their own D1 refill sizes. However, if your pen uses a D1 refill, you can use a refill from any brand as they are compatible. There’s a wide range of inks and color options to choose from.

The fact that D1 refill sizes are small in size means that they run out of ink more quickly. They might not serve you longer as their full-size counterparts. But, small pocket writing tools are precisely what they’re designed for.

Parker D1 pen ink refill

Image from: swarovskipenrefills.blogspot.com

Size. About 2.6 inches long and 2.3 mm in diameter. 

Ink Type. Generally, D1 pen refills are miniaturized ballpoint refills and are almost all interchangeable. There are a few that use gel ink. They get used up faster than ballpoint refills, however.

Parker-style G2 Refill

A Parker-style refill features a wide body with a long thin tip and a threaded plastic piece on the end. This refill type has an easily recognizable shape and is almost always interchangeable. 

Being one of the most common refill styles in the world, there are many Parker-style options to choose from. However, the Parker Pens Ballpoint Refills are some of our favorites. 

Size- About 3.9 inches long with a wide barrel and a long thin tip.

Ink Style- Generally, they feature ballpoint ink. You may find a few gel ink refill options as well.

Cross-style Refill

Cross-Style Ballpoint Refills

Cross Ballpoint Refill

Often referred to as the C1 refill, this Cross Ballpoint Refill features a long, thin metallic body. There’s a threaded plastic knob that allows for screwing into the pen body. 

Specs: 4.6 inches long. 

Standard Rollerball Refill

See Parker Brand Rollerball Ink Refill.

These are used in retractable gel and rollerballs. However, they aren’t always interchangeable as they can vary from one brand name to another. 

Compatibility issues between brands are often caused by varying lengths and tapered ends. Therefore, it’s best that you use a refill size from your pen’s manufacturer. 

Frequently Asked Questions...

How Do You Refill a Fountain Pen?

This is a question we get all the time, and we've made an entire How To video for it.

We hope that helps to answer the question!

What's the Difference Between Ballpoint Pen Refills and Rollerball Refills?

Simple answer: The ink types are different based primarily on the liquid used to distribute the ink dye. 

Ballpoint pen ink is oil-based that dries really quickly and doesn't smudge.

Rollerball pen ink is water-based that seeps a little deeper in the page and looks darker and bolder. 

Conclusion

Finding the right replacement refill for your pen doesn’t have to be frustrating anymore. 

With this guide by your side, you can now go ahead and explore new combinations of writing instruments and refills that fit. 

If you’re looking for an ink refill that will fit your Cross, Waterman, or Parker pens, Dayspring Pens has got you covered. 

We have a wide range of generic pen refills compatible with your favorite rollerball, ballpoint, and fountain pen ink.

Featured image: WikiMedia

sam

Sam DiNardo

Sam Di Nardo is the Lead Blogger at Dayspring Pens where she has become an expert in all things ballpoint, rollerball, and fountain pen. Her current fountain pen favorite is the Franklin Cristoph Model 20 Marietta. She lives in Virginia with her husband and their growing family. Learn more about Sam's Bio.

13 Comments

@LYNDSAY From what I can tell the manufacturer I-Mark sells both Cross and Parker style refills for ballpoint pens. This means it should be easy to determine which of these style your Inluxus takes. Looking at the refill you have, which brand refill does it look more like? Depending on if it is thin and narrow like the Cross or more round and tapered like the Parker, you can try one of those styles and see if it fits.

Samantha Di Nardo

I am looking for refills for the Inluxus ballpoint pen. It doesn’t have the original inside it. Any ideas where I can get these please?

Lyndsay

@SAMUEL MCCONKEY If your Montblanc is twist-action, then it is a ballpoint. If you have to take the cap off to write with it, it is a rollerball. Once you know the difference, you should be able to find refills for the right style online or at your local office supply store without too much trouble. Hope this helps!

Samantha Di Nardo

I have aMont Blanc rollerball or ball point pen with no cartridge. How do you tell the difference and where can I get a replacement ?
Thanks in advance.

Samuel Mcconkey

@Lisa Great question! To my understanding Schneider makes a compatible refill. I had success searching Papermate Powerpoint refill and saw a variety of generic brands that make compatible refills as well.

Samantha Di Nardo

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