Here's another Japanese design that skirts the line between "Good gosh that's clever" and "Do we really need this?"
By utilizing thin, perfectly-cylindrical leads, mechanical pencils obviate the need for sharpening. But if you were to zoom in on the tip, you'd see that even the narrowest lead can alternate between blunt and sharp as it wears down. And apparently there's a market of really anal-retentive end users who require a razor-sharp point at all times. Hence Japanese writing utensil manufacturer Uni designed the Kuru Toga, a mechanical pencil that rotates the lead in place, always presenting the pointiest bit to the writing surface:
An internal rotating gear?!? How do they think this stuff up?
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Absolutely love this pencil! However, do not lose the eraser cap because as the eraser wears down you will lose the function of lead advancement. I would also recommend the .03 Preppy fountain pen!
This is awesome! I remember having to spin the barrel of a pencil (non mechanical) to maintain it's sharpness during drafting class.