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  Absolutely fantastic. I..., July 31, 2012
Absolutely fantastic.

I really did not expect much, after using so many different mechanical pencils, I really did not expect much from Rotring except an overpriced but pleasant looking pencil. I was wrong.

Writing with this pencil just exudes pure joy from your hand. The knurling on the grip is very fine yet very precise, no sharp edges and no mismatching in the pattern at all, very uniform and very nice. The quality of this pencil can be immediately seen and felt in your hand.

Quality & Writeability:
Even the knurling at the top where the lead indicator is, has been well done, albeit of a rougher pattern. The cutout for to display the lead hardness is also nice, it has clearly been beveled or grinder to remove sharp edges (a nice touch which I would not expect to ever be done by a cheap pencil or any pencils which have not explicitly been designed for quality). The smooth action from turning the indicator and the apparent tight fit also attest to the quality of this pencil.

The clip is very strong, even a little tight, but well made and should not bend out easily from use, and the subtle Rotring imprint is a nice touch.

There is no play in the lead sleeve, so you do not need to extend the lead far away from the pencil to write with it. In fact, it seems to write finer and more clearly than other mechanical pencils I have, due to the way it holds the lead. I have not used it long, but there has been no breakage and I expect none.

The eraser is small and for emergencies as with all professional drafting/mechanical pencils, but still larger than the competition (Pentel, Uni) which is nice. The diameter of the loading sleeve is also fully open, with no restrictions, so it's easy to load without trying to feed in each piece of lead. It also came preloaded with x4 pieces of lead which was a nice touch (it appears to be HB lead). The cap is also finely engraved with 0.5, again no glaring paint, and is quite strong so should not bend easily by accident (e.g. with some Uni pencils).

Stylistically this pencil is top of the line. No glaring nickel plated plastic, faux aluminum coating, or stickers of any kind. Everything is subtle, no glaring display of the brand, or giant lead size labels: this pencil screams professional, and I'm proud to display it in my pocket of engineering geekiness. You will create the immediate impression of professionalism and no-nonsense business by using this pencil.

Nevertheless, due to the all metal construction, this pencil is also significantly heavy. Because I rest the pencil in the cradle of my thumb and index finger, the weight does not bother me much. If I were a writer that holds the pencil upright, this might be fatiguing with extended use. The weight is also an advantage though, if you are used to ultra light pencils which you have to physically press downward to write with, this will definitely be a pleasurable experience for you. No pressure at all is needed with this pencil, allowing finer control and less hand fatigue initially.

Durability? This pencil should last forever. There is nothing to show rubbing/wear either. The only part that could possibly wear off is the 0.5 red printing near the clip on the side, but your hand never rubs here and the printing is with a thicker almost embossed ink, so there is really no chance of wear.

Pocket Wear:
I have had no issues so far with this pencil poking through my pocket either. I can only assume this is because the barrel length to clip top is somewhat shorter than the majority of my other pencils and pens (Uni, Pentel, Namiki, Parker, were all longer by comparison of what I have off hand)

I have tried other $30+ pencils, and I can truthfully say this is the first one which I can say is well worth the price, with which the quality is clearly appropriate to its cost, if not above it's price bracket. I could easily value this pencil at $50+.

I only wish other manufacturers paid as much attention to the design, detail, writeability, style, and finishing touches as Rotring. This is my new favorite pencil, without a doubt.
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