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[Pen/Pencil Review] The UNI Kuru Toga .05mm Mechanical Pencil

Posted by reudaly on September 5, 2011 in Review, writing instruments |

My husband ordered a UNI Kuru Toga .05mm pencil and then gave it to me. It’s an intriguing concept, I have to admit, and I was happy to give it a shot. Of course, being ordered by my husband, he bought the black body. I would’ve gone for the green…

UNI (Uni-Ball) designed the Kuru Toga with one unique feature…automatically rotating lead. Doesn’t sound like much, does it? But it’s not something any pencil THAT I’VE SEEN has done. Sure there are many “self-advancing” lead pencils, but this isn’t that.

See, I wasn’t ever a huge fan of self-advancing pencils. I kinda like to click the top. But I’m intrigued by the automatically rotating lead. I’m a heavy-handed writer, so I so tend to wear lead flat on the writing surface pretty quickly – especially since I like leads in the “B” end of the family. So I’m constantly shifting the pencil to even out the lead.

I don’t have to do that with the Kuru Toga. When you lift the pencil off the paper, it twists the lead incrementally so the lead wears evenly as you write. The theory – which I am seeing in practice – is that my lead is lasting longer and breaking less frequently. This will not prevent breaking from weight-bearing writing (which is also an issue with me) but it does keep the lead from snapping at the uneven points – as when you write on one side of the lead until it makes a sharp point. There’s less diameter there, and a greater instance of breakage.

This new method also lowers the likelihood of ripping through paper with a sharp point of pencil lead. (Yeah, I’ve NEVER done that!) Which I think would also lead to greater ability to erase completely if the more uniform point of the lead doesn’ t leave etched grooves in the paper from those same sharp points.

My husband didn’t really care for the Kuru Toga because of the body of the pencil itself. It’s plastic with a ribbed finger guard. He thought the pencil was too light – and definitely too light for him. But he is the drafting pencil connoisseur and is used to metal barreled pencils.

As for me…I’m fine with the plastic barrel. But I’m used to these kinds of mechanical pencils. I found it fit comfortably in my hand. The hardware didn’t seem flimsy to me. I like the smoked grip that lets you see the clutch mechanism.

Since my husband passed it down to me, it’s been sitting on my desk as my “go to” notes pencil when I need to jot something down. I think it’s a solid, reliable pencil. So, since he didn’t care for it much and I do, we’ll compromise at a solid 3.5 bronze pencils.

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