First off, I love Sharpies. How much? This much:
So my wife bought me a huge pack of what she thought was Sharpies but turned out to be Shoupies. I didn’t notice until after a few hours of use, only because I tried to put the wrong cap on it. They are dead-ringers for Sharpies, but for some reason they won’t “wear” Sharpie caps.
Sorry about the blur factor, but you can see the resemblance.The “ar” and the “ou” are obviously meant to look like one another. The Sharpie has very little writing on it: “SHARPIE fine point AP (logo) permanent Marker.”
The Shoupie has quite a bit more: “SP (logo) Tou Wen Zi Series No.95000 SHOUPIE fine point permanent market. Permanent on Most Surfaces. Quick Drying. Recap When Not In Use. Do Not Shake. Not For Letter Writing Or Cloth. Made In China” let me repeat part of that “Not For Letter Writing Or Cloth.” that seems weird.
So, being the picky pen person I am, I couldn’t help but do a side by side:
Well, the first thing you can notice is the line is thicker. I looked at the felt tips and they are the same size, but the shoupies felt seems to be softer and gives quite a bit more when even lightly pressed. You can see this easily in the dot test, it is possible to make fine marks but you have to be very careful.
The Shoupie tip doesn’t seem to have as fine of “action” either. Look at the curves of the wavy line and the drawing of the hand, you can see it in the turn of the line where the Shoupie seems to stick a little.
The black box test the Shoupie hands down wins. At first I thought it was just releasing more ink in the line, I flipped the paper over and there was no more bleed-through than with the Sharpie. You can still see it in the scanned version, but there is no comparison in real life. Shoupie FTW.
The Sharpie wins the water test, and here you start to see a real drawback to the Shoupie. The line is already staring to fade. Both these pens were tested fresh, first time I have used either of them. I capped the Shoupie and it seemed to work fine for me later, but it is always scary to get that weak of a line in only a couple of minutes.
Final Thoughts: The Shoupie is pretty much what you would expect from a Sharpie clone. While I am disappointed in the line quality in the water test I am not surprised. I was surprised by the black box test. For $3.99 at a flea market for a 14 pack I think it is still a bargain. I have been using them on the series of paintings I am working on and they have been outperforming the Sharpies due to the soft felt and dark ink. So pick up a pack if you see them around, I wouldn’t kick them out of my pen case.
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