Auto lead rotation is a great concept and I decided to give the Kuru Toga
Roulette a try. Upon using it, however, I've realized it's not for me.
I write in small block letters and try to be very neat and precise. The slight
movement of the tip (about 1 mm) that triggers the lead rotation might sound
insignificant, but it's enough to give the pencil a spongy, slightly unstable
feeling in use. This makes it harder to write precisely and it's tiring as the
hand tries to compensate for the sponginess by varying downward pressure. If
they came up with a way to rotate the lead with no tip movement, that could be a
winner, but as it is now, it's somewhat of a gimmick IMHO.
For different writing styles, it may work well. It's probably well suited to
writing in Chinese or Japanese characters (flowing, angular strokes) or
The pencil does what it was designed to do. Lines are indeed a bit sharper and
more consistent in thickness with this pencil. Whether this is worth the awkward
feel depends on the user. Most people have a habit of rotating the pencil
anyway, when it feels like the tip of the lead has flattened out. Fit and finish
are nice, but could be better (for example an all metal barrel) for the price.
My order also included a Uni-ball Shift Pipe and a Uni-ball Alpha Gel Slim, both
of which I much prefer over the Roulette (they're also priced similarly). If you
want to try a Toga, I'd suggest going with the cheaper version first.
If anyone wants a Roulette in mint condition, look for my soon-to-be posted
listing on ebay!
This is the perfect pen to clip into the fold of a wallet. It also fits
perfectly inside the coiled wire binding of a 3 x 5" flip notepad.
I had been using the popular Inka pen in my wallet. It's slightly shorter than
this one, but much thicker. Extending the length also required unscrewing the
end cap and main cap, then reassembling the pen (like who's really going to do
all of that). This Zebra extends the tip and lengthens the body in one swift
I also have the True Utility Telepen, which is a lot shorter and thinner than
this pen, though it's actually longer than this pen when extended. The thinness,
however, makes it a little awkward to write with. Furthermore, it doesn't have a
clip, only a split ring. I keep that one on my keychain.
If you want the smallest pen possible, the Telepen would be it. This Zebra is a
good compromise - small enough to be unnoticeable in a wallet, yet large enough
to use comfortably. It's also cheaper than the others I've mentioned.