Review: Zebra Tect 2way 1000 Mechanical Pencil

Zebra tect 2way 1000

Since I started my recent drafting pencil kick, I couldn't wait to try out the Zebra Tect 2Way 1000 because I thought it was one of the coolest looking pencils on the market.  While the looks are what sold me, the feel and functionality of the pencil are what keep me coming back for more.  This is a really good pencil, but there are a few too many little things that prevent me from getting more use out of it.

One of the big selling points of the Zebra Tect 2way is the 2way-ness of it.  No, there is not an additional pen cartridge making this a multi pen, but rather there are two ways to advance the lead:  the traditional click advance, or the updated shaker mechanism.  I think I would actually like this pencil more if it was one or the other, because I am not really digging the ring around the barrel that locks the pencil into the type of lead advancement you want.  It just seems extraneous to me, or a case of trying to hard.  It does its job, but is it neccessary?  Plus, you have to shake the heck out of it to advance the lead.

Secondly, I didn't really consider that the grip would be an issue by the looks of it, but it kind of is.  The orange plastic rings encircling the grip are very firm, and they rise above the underlying metal grip higher than it appears.  That's ok for short bursts, but I could see that getting tiresome over long writing or drafting sessions.

Finally, I wish the barrel of the entire pencil was metal.  The silver grip area is, but the upper body is resin based (essentially plastic).  It does have a nice balance in the hand while writing, and as nice as it feels, it is just a little but off.  It could be mental on my part though.

That is a lot of small marks on what is otherwise a good pencil.  Unfortunately for me, those things add up, and push this one to the back of the drawer.

Click here for the XL review.

Posted on September 2, 2010 and filed under Pencil Reviews, Zebra, Mechanical Pencil.